1932

Abstract

The few percent of soil organic carbon (SOC) among mineral components form the interface of climate, plant growth, soil biological processes, physical transport infrastructure, and chemical transformations. We explore maps, models, myths, motivation, means of implementation, and modalities for transformation. Theories of place relate geographic variation in SOC to climate, soil types, land cover, and profile depth. Process-level theories of biophysical change and socioeconomic theories of induced change explain SOC transitions that follow from land use change when a declining curve is bent and recovery toward SOC saturation starts. While the desirability of recovering from SOC deficits has been mainstreamed into climate policy, the effectiveness of proposed measures taken remains contested. Process-level requirements for transitions at plot and landscape scales remain uncertain. Expectations of policy-induced SOC transitions have to align with national cross-sectoral C accounting and be managed realistically with land users (farmers) and commodity supply chains (private sector, consumers).

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2023-11-13
2024-06-14
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