Soil Carbon Sequestration in the Age of Climate Change: A Review

M. Murali *

Department of Silviculture and Agroforestry, Sam Higginbottom University of Agriculture, Technology and Sciences, Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh, India.

M. Gayathri

Department of Silviculture and Agroforestry, Sam Higginbottom University of Agriculture, Technology and Sciences, Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Vikash Singh

ICAR – Directorate of Weed Research, Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, India.

Sumit Raj

Department of Soil Conservation and Water Management, CSAUA&T, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Veerendra Singh

Department of Soil Science and Agricultural Chemistry, Chandra Shekhar Azad University of Agriculture and Technology, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Chandrakant Chaubey

Department of Soil Science and Agricultural Chemistry, SVPUAT, Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Fatima Inamdar

Vishwakarma Institute of Information Technology, Pune, Maharashtra 411060, India.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Soil carbon sequestration has garnered attention as a pivotal strategy in mitigating climate change. Its relevance is accentuated by the soil's dual role in both storing carbon and supporting agriculture, thereby contributing to both environmental and food security. The purpose of this review is to analyze the various facets of soil carbon sequestration in the Indian context, specifically focusing on case studies that highlight both successes and failures in this realm. Key findings indicate that multifaceted approaches, such as agroforestry models in Tamil Nadu and community-led natural farming in Andhra Pradesh, have been effective in enhancing soil carbon stocks. These approaches are not only beneficial for carbon sequestration but also demonstrate positive implications for farm yield and biodiversity. However, the study also uncovers shortcomings in soil management practices, evident in the decline of soil carbon levels in regions such as Punjab due to monoculture and excessive fertilizer use. The consequences of such practices manifest in reduced soil fertility, emphasizing the urgent need for sustainable agricultural methods. In fragile ecosystems like the Himalayan region, soil erosion has further reduced the soil's ability to act as a carbon sink, indicating the necessity for immediate conservation efforts. These findings imply that an integrated approach, coupling agricultural innovation with policy support, can substantially improve the effectiveness of soil as a carbon sequester. Moreover, it is essential for policies to be adaptive and region-specific, accounting for the diverse geographical and climatic conditions across India. This review aims to serve as a comprehensive guide for policymakers, researchers, and agricultural practitioners, emphasizing that soil carbon sequestration is not an isolated goal but must be integrated into broader environmental and agricultural objectives.

Keywords: Agroforestry, monoculture, sequestration, sustainability

How to Cite

Murali , M., Gayathri , M., Singh , V., Raj , S., Singh , V., Chaubey , C., & Inamdar , F. (2023). Soil Carbon Sequestration in the Age of Climate Change: A Review. International Journal of Environment and Climate Change, 13(11), 1668–1677.


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