Carbon Sequestration and Conservation

The Land Conservation Assistance Network can help you find assistance with your Carbon objectives.

Assistance for Farmers and Ranchers

Grasslands are one of the largest carbon sinks on the planet, capable of pulling enormous quantities of CO2 from the atmosphere and storing it in the soil. Carbon farming is the process of farming and ranching to maximize the land’s ability to lock up CO2 and other greenhouse gases, making the land more resilient to the effects of a changing climate.

Carbon farming involves implementing practices that are known to improve the rate at which CO2 is removed from the atmosphere and converted to plant material and soil organic matter. Carbon farming is successful when carbon gains resulting from enhanced land management or conservation practices exceed carbon losses.

This new market opportunity pays farmers and ranchers to preserve grasslands and lock carbon into the soil. Grassland carbon credits reward landowners for retaining soil carbon and avoiding the emissions associated with converting grassland into croplands. Grassland projects also provide ecosystem benefits such as habitat for threatened species.

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Solutions for Forest Landowners

Trees are without a doubt the best carbon capture technology in the world. They are an incredible carbon sink because - made entirely of carbon, they last for years as a standing tree, and takes years to break down after the tree dies. Reducing carbon emissions not only benefits the environment, but also has financial value. Healthy forests sequester carbon in their wood and vegetation along with the soil in which they grow. Conserving forest land promotes healthy air, water and soil, and helps to maintain the natural carbon cycle. By tapping into the carbon markets, forest landowners can get paid for the carbon their forests are storing. Forest owners who know the ecological and economic value of their forests can now add carbon sequestration as an official activity for their family forest and tap into a new revenue stream.

According to the US Forest Service, America's forests sequester 866 million tons of carbon a year, which is roughly 16% of the US annual emissions (depending on the year). Forests sequester or store carbon primarily in trees and soil. While they mainly pull carbon out of the atmosphere—making them a sink—they also release carbon dioxide. This occurs naturally, such as when a tree dies and is decomposed (thereby releasing carbon dioxide, methane, and other gases). The movement of carbon and other gases within forests and soils occurs on a cycle. Forest management can influence these cycles and enhance carbon capture.

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Carbon Credits and Sequestration (76)
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