Assessment of Benefits of Conservation Agriculture on Soil Functions in Arable Production Systems in Europe
AbstractConventional farming (CONV) is the norm in European farming, causing adverse effects on some of the five major soil functions, viz. primary productivity, carbon sequestration and regulation, nutrient cycling and provision, water regulation and purification, and habitat for functional and intrinsic biodiversity. Conservation agriculture (CA) is an alternative to enhance soil functions. However, there is no analysis of CA benefits on the five soil functions as most studies addressed individual soil functions. The objective was to compare effects of CA and CONV practices on the five soil functions in four major environmental zones (Atlantic North, Pannonian, Continental and Mediterranean North) in Europe by applying expert scoring based on synthesis of existing literature. In each environmental zone, a team of experts scored the five soil functions due to CA and CONV treatments and median scores indicated the overall effects on five soil functions. Across the environmental zones, CONV had overall negative effects on soil functions with a median score of 0.50 whereas CA had overall positive effects with median score ranging from 0.80 to 0.83. The study proposes the need for field-based investigations, policies and subsidy support to benefit from CA adoption to enhance the five soil functions. View Full-Text
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Ghaley, B.B.; Rusu, T.; Sandén, T.; Spiegel, H.; Menta, C.; Visioli, G.; O’Sullivan, L.; Gattin, I.T.; Delgado, A.; Liebig, M.A.; Vrebos, D.; Szegi, T.; Michéli, E.; Cacovean, H.; Henriksen, C.B. Assessment of Benefits of Conservation Agriculture on Soil Functions in Arable Production Systems in Europe. Sustainability 2018, 10, 794.
Ghaley BB, Rusu T, Sandén T, Spiegel H, Menta C, Visioli G, O’Sullivan L, Gattin IT, Delgado A, Liebig MA, Vrebos D, Szegi T, Michéli E, Cacovean H, Henriksen CB. Assessment of Benefits of Conservation Agriculture on Soil Functions in Arable Production Systems in Europe. Sustainability. 2018; 10(3):794.Chicago/Turabian Style
Ghaley, Bhim B.; Rusu, Teodor; Sandén, Taru; Spiegel, Heide; Menta, Cristina; Visioli, Giovanna; O’Sullivan, Lilian; Gattin, Isabelle T.; Delgado, Antonio; Liebig, Mark A.; Vrebos, Dirk; Szegi, Tamas; Michéli, Erika; Cacovean, Horia; Henriksen, Christian B. 2018. "Assessment of Benefits of Conservation Agriculture on Soil Functions in Arable Production Systems in Europe." Sustainability 10, no. 3: 794.
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