Impact of Agroforestry Systems on Carbon Sequestration in Northern Haryana, India

Asha Gaur, Sharda R. Gupta


Agroforestry can be a good option for sequestering carbon in agricultural and marginal lands for climate change mitigation. The aim of this study was to analyze the impact of Populus deltoides based agroforestry systems on carbon storage in the soil – plant system in relation to site conditions. The agroforestry systems selected for the study were located at Kurukshetra (Salimpur; 30 10’ N, 76 55’ E; 268 m above MSL) and Yamunangar (Kalesar 30 21’ N, 77 34’ E, 339 m above MSL) in northern India. The basal area, plant biomass production, and litter fall increased with increase in age of trees from 3 to 7 years. The soil organic carbon pool in the Populus deltoides agroforestry systems was greater in agroforestry systems at Kalesar (22.31 to 27.82 Mg C ha-1) than at Salimpur (19.63 to 30.11 Mg C ha-1). The carbon storage in the tree component varied in the range of 18.92 to 71.02 Mg C ha-1 at Kalesar and 14.78 to 56.91 Mg C ha-1 at Salimpur. Carbon pool in wheat crop under Populus deltoides agroforestry systems was 3.70-3.53 Mg C ha-1 at Salimpur and 3.84-3.68 Mg C ha{l at Kalesar. The carbon storage in water stable soil aggregates was directly related to soil organic carbon. The macroaggregates (2 mm-250 µm) formed 3.38 to14.88% part of bulk soil at Salimpur and 10.56 to 18.82% at Kalesar; soil aggregate carbon was 0.21 to1.08% at Salimpur and 0.23 to 1.15 % at Kalesar in 0-45 cm soil depths. The silt and clay fractions of soil microaggregates (< 53 µm) at both the sites protected a large fraction of soil carbon. Illite, Kaolinite and Montmorillonite, Dolomite and Muscovite were the dominant minerals. Agroforestry enhanced carbon storage in soil and the woody biomass and can play an important role in carbon sequestration for soil improving soil health together with climate change mitigation.



Plant Biomass Carbon; Soil Organic Carbon Pool; Soil Aggregate Carbon; Soil Fractions; Clay Mineralogy; X-ray Diffraction


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