Carbon Sequestration And Storage
Plants of all kinds are natures way of cleaning the air of unwanted greenhouse gas or carbon. Plants are also natures way of returning clean oxygen back into the air we breathe. This is called respiration.
This process requires a dynamic, well balanced eco system. This ecosystem requires plants, air, water, and a healthy soil environment that is full of living insects, worms and especially microorganisms such as bacteria and micorrhizae fungi.
Plants capture carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere during photosynthesis. They convert the CO2 to simple sugars that plants use for energy and growth, or structural compounds such as fibers and cellulose. This is what soil scientists call carbon sequestration – or carbon storage.
When plants and plant roots die, or when plant matter such as leaves, stems and stalks are incorporated into the soil, insects, worms and microorganisms break down the sugars and other compounds. simply put, they eat them. Some of the carbon is released back to the atmosphere as CO2 by the microorganisms. However most remains in the soil as carbon storage. Some of the plant matter is harder to break down, and becomes part of the soil’s organic matter which is important for soil structure.
During this natural process of carbon sequestration plants capture CO2,(greenhouse gas,) and place it in the soil in more stable forms.