Efficiency of Sequestering Carbon in Agricultural Soils, The

Gregory R. Pautsch, Lyubov A. Kurkalova, Bruce A. Babcock, Catherine L. Kling
August 2000  [00-WP 246]

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Pautsch, G.R., L.A. Kurkalova, B.A. Babcock, and C.L. Kling. 2000. "Efficiency of Sequestering Carbon in Agricultural Soils, The." Working paper 00-WP 246. Center for Agricultural and Rural Development, Iowa State University.


Agricultural tillage practices are important human-induced activities that can alter carbon emissions from agricultural soils and have the potential to significantly contribute to reductions in greenhouse gas emission. This paper investigates the expected costs of sequestering carbon in agricultural soils under different subsidy and market-based policies. Using the detailed National Resources Inventory data, the authors estimate the probability that farmers adopt conservation tillage practices based on a variety of exogenous characteristics and profit from conventional practices. Using these estimates, along with physical models of carbon sequestration, the authors estimate the subsidy costs of achieving increased carbon sequestration with alternative subsidy schemes.