Agriculture and forestry account for 9% of US carbon emission, says EPA. Therefore, you need to understand how to reduce and control greenhouse gases on your farm. There are several techniques that can be used to reduce carbon emissions to the environment.
Two Powerful Greenhouse Gases
Whereas other industries emphasize on reducing CO2 emission, agriculture is primarily concerned with the production of the two utmost powerful greenhouse gases, nitrous oxide, and methane.
About methane gas, cows are the main culprit. Their stomachs flip over and release methane – a lot. Synthetic and natural fertilizers source N2O, which is 300-time more powerful than CO2.
Since it is impossible to prevent cows from burping, advocates of sustainable development see improving the balance between yield and productions as the first logical step towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Since N2O is mainly formed from excess nitrogen in soils, one way to suppress emissions is to use fertilizer wisely: add just as much as needed at the right place at the right time to meet the crops/field needs.
Effective Tillage Techniques
The next-best step in climate control on your farm is to put the cultivator along with the maximum of tillage equipments. Scattering the earth with iron is like bursting a balloon – it instantaneously releases the soil stored carbon into the air. Conservational tillage will significantly reduce your carbon footprints.
The introduction of conservation tillage techniques, sideways with cropping practices such as cover crops, has the potential to make a difference when the “farm” develops as one of the climate super-heroes. This is because the soil is a great-place to “fix” carbon and prevent it from entering the atmosphere.
In farms, there are two other important carbon factors which effect the yield:
- Energy needed to dry and maintain harvested crops.
- The Farm machines
Automated grain drying, storing, and conditioning system can significantly reduce energy consumptions and carbon emission. Similar approach is applied to farm machinery which can increase yields. Excessive standstill and transport times, as well as additional field trips, increase greenhouse gas emissions, and reduce efficiency.
Moreover, to reduce ammonia emissions UK government is aiming possible ban on urea fertilizers.