We bring countries together to find ways to grow more food without growing greenhouse gas emissions.

February 20, 2018   •   News

, initiated in November 2017, has announced that its website is now up and running at https://www.circasa-project.eu/

CIRCASA aims to develop international synergies concerning research and knowledge exchange in the field of carbon sequestration in agricultural soils at European Union and global levels with active engagement of all relevant stakeholders. Specifically, it seeks to:

*   Strengthen the international research community on soil carbon sequestration in relation to climate change and food security;

*   Improve our understanding of agricultural soil carbon sequestration in different agricultural systems and pedo-climatic conditions and its potential for climate change mitigation and adaptation and for increasing food production;

*   Co-design a strategic research agenda with stakeholders on soil carbon sequestration in agriculture;

*   Better structure the international research cooperation in this field.

The Global Research Alliance is one of the major international initiatives participating in the CIRCASA project, along with 4 per 1000 – Soils for Food Security and Climate and the Joint Programming Initiative on Sustainable Agriculture, Food Security and Climate Change (FACCE-JPI). The Climate Change Agriculture and Food Security program (CCAFS) and the Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE) programs of the CGIAR, and the Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils (ITPS) of the Global Soil Partnership (GSP) are also involved, along with 23 Partners.

February 14, 2018   •   News

The Special Section ‘Frontline research in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions from paddy fields’, which contains 10 original papers, has been published online by the Soil Science and Plant Nutrition (SSPN), in association with the GRA’s Paddy Rice Group, Partners and Affiliates.

View online here

 

Preface:

Paddy fields are recognized to be a major anthropogenic source of atmospheric methane (CH4), a potent greenhouse gas with a relatively short lifetime in the atmosphere. Like other biogenic sources, CH4 is produced by the activity of CH4-producing archaea, or methanogens, as one of the terminal products in the anaerobic food web in flooded soils. Due to the large amount of CH4 emitted globally from paddy fields, mitigation of emissions from this source is very important in order to stabilize its atmospheric concentration. In addition, because of the possibility of controlling these emissions by agronomic practices, such as management of water, fertilizer, and organic matter, paddy fields appear to be one of the most promising sources for mitigating CH4 emissions.

The mechanisms and factors controlling CH4 production in flooded soils were systematically elucidated almost 50 years ago, mainly by laboratory experiments. Field measurements of the emissions from paddy fields have been conducted at various locations of the world since the early 1980s. Compilation of these data provided the emission and scaling factors for CH4 from rice cultivation in the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories. Trade-offs and synergies of mitigating CH4 emissions with N2O emissions or rice production have also been studied. As a result, an array of options that mitigate greenhouse gas emissions from paddy fields has now been proposed and demonstrated by field experiments.

However, there is a strong social need, as the next step of research advancement, to develop implementation strategies for extending the options successfully to local farmers and communities. Because the systems of rice cultivation are widely diverse depending on climate, social, and economic conditions, the options often need to be developed in accordance with those regional conditions. Also, it is necessary to improve the sharing of knowledge of the mitigation options among researchers and other stakeholders, such as policy makers and land users, in different regions of the world. These endeavors are particularly crucial to set up nationally appropriate mitigation actions for rice producing countries, in order to undertake ambitious efforts to combat climate change and meet the 2016 Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

This special section, Frontline research in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions from paddy fields, has been proposed to address the current research needs. Research papers on the issue were collected through the framework of the Paddy Rice Research Group of the Global Research Alliance on Agricultural Greenhouse Gases (GRA).

 

View the associated papers online here

February 2, 2018   •   News

The GRA’s Integrative Research Group (IRG) had a very fruitful meeting hosted by France in Paris on January 17-18. This was the group’s second annual meeting since being formed as a merger between the Inventories & Monitoring and the Soil Carbon Sequestration Cross-Cutting Groups. The meeting was attended by 34 participants, representing 14 Alliance member countries, and invited experts.

Meeting outcomes

The country representatives highlighted some of their important research activities and needs relevant to the IRG.  There was optimism about how the emerging projects from the Inventory flagship and Carbon Sequestration flagship will contribute to the on-going work of the Inventories and Carbon Sequestration Networks.  The Group decided that the current focus of the Grassland Network on carbon sequestration would be better included as one of priorities for the new Carbon Sequestration Network.  The integration of different greenhouse gas emissions for livestock production systems that involve grassland fits well within the new Farm to Region Modelling Network.  Consequently, the Grassland Network will dissolve and GRA members and partners engaged in grasslands need to participate actively in the new Carbon Sequestration and the Farm to Regional Networks to realise the great opportunities for grassland management to reduce greenhouse gas emission intensity.  The meeting ended with a stimulating discussion of how the IRG could help fill some important knowledge gaps.