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SOIL INORGANIC CARBON



  Apr 16, 2024

SOIL INORGANIC CARBON



1. What is soil inorganic carbon?

• Soil inorganic carbon refers to carbon contained in the mineral component of soil, primarily in the form of carbonate minerals such as calcium carbonate. This form of carbon can also exist as trapped carbon dioxide within soil pores or dissolved in water.

2. How is soil inorganic carbon formed?

• Soil inorganic carbon is primarily formed through the weathering of carbonate-containing rocks and the reaction of soil minerals with atmospheric carbon dioxide. These processes can lead to the accumulation of carbonates in the soil.

3. Why is soil inorganic carbon important?

• Soil inorganic carbon plays a crucial role in regulating the pH of the soil, buffering against acidity, and maintaining nutrient balance. It is also significant for its role in the carbon cycle, acting as both a source and sink of carbon dioxide, thus impacting climate change.

4. What are the environmental impacts of the mobilization of soil inorganic carbon?

• The increased mobility of soil inorganic carbon, often caused by acidification from pollution and intensive agricultural practices, can lead to the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, affecting climate regulation. It also diminishes the soil’s ability to neutralize acids and maintain nutrient levels, which can compromise plant growth and soil health.

5. How can we manage soil inorganic carbon effectively?

• Effective management of soil inorganic carbon involves adopting land practices that minimize disturbance and degradation, such as optimizing irrigation and fertilization to reduce excessive leaching and runoff. Additionally, incorporating organic materials like compost can enhance soil structure, increase pH, and boost carbonate content, helping to increase the storage of inorganic carbon in soils.

By understanding and managing soil inorganic carbon, we can better preserve soil health and contribute to broader environmental goals, including climate change mitigation.


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