Ecology, Environment and Conservation Paper

Vol 20, Issue 2, 2014; Page No.(561-565)

CARBON SEQUESTERED THROUGH BIOMASS AND SOIL ORGANIC CARBON DYNAMICS IN JATROPHA CURCAS L.

Ajay Kumar Mishra, Kshama Singh, Kailash Singh, Shalini Srivastava, Md. Sarware Alam and Sharik Ali

Abstract

Revegetation of degraded land is a big challenge in present scenario where per capita land availability is reducing drastically. According to the latest estimates about 187.8 mha (57 approximately) out of 328.73 mha land has been degraded in India. Jatropha curcas L. (Jatropha) known as a bio fuel plant, is suitable for revegetation of degraded land. However, soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics under Jatropha plantations are still not well understood. The objective of this study was to quantify soil organic carbon (SOC) and carbon sequestration potential under two-year-old Jatropha plantation spread over 300 hectares, at Barkaccha, Rajiv Gandhi South Campus (BHU), Mirzapur, Uttar Pradesh, India. Soil samples were collected periodically at three month interval (January and April) from the two soil depths i.e. 0-15 and 15-30 cm. In this study, instead of the more popular diameter at breast height (DBH), collar diameter (diameter at stem base) was used because the stem of Jatropha hardly grew at DBH level. The total plant biomass (leaves, branches and coarse roots) was quantified by multiplying the average dry biomass of one individual by the number of trees per hectare. Carbon sequestered in January and April for aboveground dry biomass were 0.85 and 0.93 tha and for belowground dry biomass were 0.17 and 0.19 tha. These results revealed that the potential of carbon sequestration in Jatropha was higher as found in crops and can be adopted to reclaim waste land and to mitigate climate change.

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