Tag: monitoring

Press Release: Supporting accurate measurement of soil carbon

Publication of information resource on remote sensing and probe based technologies for farmers seeking to enter the voluntary carbon market.

Farm Carbon Toolkit (FCT) has published information to assist landowners and farmers when choosing how to monitor their soil carbon stocks. FCT is announcing the release of a document that breaks down the methodology and verification of some of the major remote sensing and probes based technologies that offer soil carbon quantification services. 

Many farm businesses are starting to look at baselining carbon storage on their farms. Where they are looking to enter voluntary carbon markets it is necessary to do this baselining accurately. For these businesses the costs associated with baselining soil carbon levels can be prohibitive. Responding to this cost barrier, a number of remote sensing  and novel technologies are coming onto the market. However it can be very difficult for businesses to know which technology to go with and indeed what level of accuracy is required. 

Farm Carbon Toolkit’s document reviews some of the major remote sensing and probe based technologies that are delivering soil carbon quantification services by describing the methodology and detailing any verification process the organisation has undertaken. The aim is to help farmers to make more informed decisions should they wish to measure soil carbon storage and engage in the voluntary carbon market. 

This 18 page document is set within the context of the release of the new minimum standards for the UK Soil Carbon Code, which is aligned with the Peatland Code and UK Woodland Carbon Codes. These codes set out the minimum standards for monitoring and measuring carbon stocks within peatlands, woodlands and soils which should be adhered to when entering the voluntary carbon market. 

The report can be found here.

Notes for editors:

About the Farm Carbon Toolkit

Farm Carbon Toolkit is an independent, farmer-led Community Interest Company, supporting farmers to measure, understand and act on their greenhouse gas emissions, while improving their business resilience for the future.

For over a decade, Farm Carbon Toolkit has delivered a range of practical projects, tools and services that have inspired real action on the ground. Organisations they work with include the Duchy of CornwallFirst Milk, TescoYeo Valley and WWF.  Their Farm Carbon Calculator is a leading on-farm carbon audit tool, used by over seven thousand farmers in the UK and beyond. To find out more visit www.farmcarbontoolkit.org.uk

Launch of Guide on Monitoring Soil Carbon

We’re pleased to announce the launch of a new guide for monitoring soil carbon. This practical field, farm and lab guide aims to answer key questions for robust on-farm field monitoring of soil carbon and associated indicators of soil health.

This guide has been produced as part of the Soil Carbon project and written in collaboration with Duchy College, Plymouth University, Rothamsted Research and the Farm Carbon Toolkit. It is designed and printed with kind support from the Farm Net Zero project, funded by the National Lottery Climate Action Fund.

Who is it for?

This practical guide is relevant to farmers seeking to measure and understand their soil carbon stocks – as well as landowners, advisors and researchers.

Supply chains and organisations seeking to reward farmers for improving soil carbon stocks will also find this guide helpful. However it should be noted that it’s not written as a formal standard or detailed protocol. The guide will be accompanied with detailed supplementary materials stemming from the ERDF Agri-Tech Cornwall funded “Soil Carbon Project”(2018 to 2021).

Why is this important?

Robust estimates of soil carbon stocks can be complicated. Not least because soil carbon levels are constantly in-flux with in-field variation. Estimates are also heavily influenced by the way in which we collect, process and analyse soil samples. In the Soil Carbon project, we’ve been working with research partners to investigate how soil carbon estimates are influenced by variables such as when the samples are taken, how many samples are taken and at what pattern across the field.

What does the guide cover?

The guide consists of answers to the following core questions:

  1. When to conduct your soil carbon sampling?
  2. What fields to select on your farm?
  3. How to sample within those fields?
  4. At what depths should samples be taken?
  5. How often should you repeat your sampling?
  6. How to collect and prepare your samples?
  7. What are the options for the lab analyses?
  8. What are the main soil health indicators that should be monitored?
  9. What are the outputs and benefits?