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Carbon Storage and Carbon Dioxide Emission as Influenced by Long-term Conservation Tillage and Nitrogen Fertilization in Corn-Soybean Rotation

Keywords: Conservation tillage , carbon storage , CO2-C emission , N fertilization

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Although agriculture is a victim of environmental risk due to global warming, but ironically it also contributes toglobal greenhouse gas (GHG) emission. The objective of this experiment was to determine the influence of long-termconservation tillage and N fertilization on soil carbon storage and CO2 emission in corn-soybean rotation system. Afactorial experiment was arranged in a randomized completely block design with four replications. The first factorwas tillage systems namely intensive tillage (IT), minimum tillage (MT) and no-tillage (NT). While the second factorwas N fertilization with rate of 0, 100 and 200 kg N ha-1 applied for corn, and 0, 25, and 50 kg N ha-1 for soybeanproduction. Samples of soil organic carbon (SOC) after 23 year of cropping were taken at depths of 0-5 cm, 5-10cm and 10-20 cm, while CO2 emission measurements were taken in corn season (2009) and soybean season (2010).Analysis of variance and means test (HSD 0.05) were analyzed using the Statistical Analysis System package. At 0-5 cm depth, SOC under NT combined with 200 kg N ha-1 fertilization was 46.1% higher than that of NT with no Nfertilization, while at depth of 5-10 cm SOC under MT was 26.2% higher than NT and 13.9% higher than IT.Throughout the corn and soybean seasons, CO2-C emissions from IT were higher than those of MT and NT, whileCO2-C emissions from 200 kg N ha-1 rate were higher than those of 0 kg N ha-1 and 100 kg N ha-1 rates. With any Nrate treatments, MT and NT could reduce CO2-C emission to 65.2 %-67.6% and to 75.4%-87.6% as much of IT,respectively. While in soybean season, MT and NT could reduce CO2-C emission to 17.6%-46.7% and 42.0%-74.3% as much of IT, respectively. Prior to generative soybean growth, N fertilization with rate of 50 kg N ha-1could reduce CO2-C emission to 32.2%-37.2% as much of 0 and 25 kg N ha-1 rates.


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