Resource centre on India's rural distress
 
 

Greenhouse gas emissions from man-managed grasslands similar to global croplands -Prachi Singh

-Down to Earth

Study highlight need to use sustainable management to preserve and enhance soil carbon storage of grasslands.

A new study shows that emissions of methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) from grasslands increased by a factor of 2.5 since 1750 mainly due to increased emissions from livestock. This has more than compensated for reduced emissions from the shrinking number of wild grazers, said the study published in Nature Communications.

The net carbon sink effect of grasslands (the ability of grasslands to absorb carbon and pack it in the soil) worldwide was estimated to have intensified over the last century but mainly in sparsely-grazed, natural grasslands.

Conversely, over the last decade, grasslands intensively managed by humans have become a net source of greenhouse gas emissions. In fact, it has greenhouse gas emission levels similar to those of global croplands, which represent a large source of greenhouse gases.

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