Background: The awareness that agricultural soils have potential to sequester carbon, has resulted in various initiatives to sequester organic carbon in agricultural lands. Yet, there is ongoing dialogue on the potential for sequestration in agricultural lands and a need for sharing knowledge and experiences how to make this happen.
Objectives: The EU H2020 CIRCASA project aims to address this knowledge gap. The overall objective of CIRCASA is to strengthen synergies among researchers and promote the transfer of knowledge on carbon sequestration in agricultural soils. This will be achieved through four complementary activities. The first aims at the strengthening of the international research community on soil carbon sequestration in relation to food security and climate change. The second aims at improving our understanding of agricultural soil carbon sequestration and its potential for climate change mitigation and food security. The third activity will engage with stakeholders to co-design a strategic research agenda on soil carbon sequestration in agriculture. The fourth activity aims to better structure the research cooperation in this field.
Through these activities CIRCASA will produce outcomes to contribute to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and of the Paris agreement within the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). CIRCASA will achieve these goals while benefiting from several international initiatives: The Global Alliance on Agricultural Greenhouse Gasses (GRA), the Joint Programming Initiative on Sustainable Agriculture, Food Security and Climate Change (FACCE-JPI) and the 4 per 1000 Soils for Food Security and Climate Initiative (4p1000). Further, CIRCASA will benefit from the CGIAR research programmes on Climate Change Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) and Water, Lands and Ecosystems (WLE).
Activities: ISRIC - World Soil Information is one of the partners in CIRCASA. ISRIC will lead the development of a Knowledge Information System (KIS) that will host knowledge on carbon sequestration in agricultural soils. This KIS will include meta data and data from experiments, as well as models and methodological guidelines developed by CIRCASA. ISRIC will also take part in the development of an On-line Collaborative Platform (OCP), a networking tool aiming at bringing together researchers, stakeholders and practitioners in the field. Through these activities ISRIC will support the improved exchange and accessibility of information on carbon sequestration in agricultural soils
Results: So far, ISRIC has delivered a technical report that specifies the requirements of the Knowledge Information System. Following approval by the consortium partners this report has been submitted to the European Commission (PDF). Subsequently, after discussions with INRA, an ISRIC report has been prepared to inform the decision process (PDF).
French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA) (INRA), France
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Austria
International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Colombia
Ecologic Institute, Germany
Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science (MPG), Germany
Aarhus University (AU), Denmark
Agricultural Research Centre for Development (CIRAD), France
European Commission, Joint Research Centre (JRC)
International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Nigeria
Institut de recherche pour le développement (IRD), France
Laboratoire des RadioIsotopes, Madagascar
Wageningen University & Research Wageningen Economic Research, Netherlands
ISRIC - World Soil Information, The Netherlands
University of Aberdeen, United Kingdom
University of Leeds, United Kingdom
Agricultural Research Council (ARC), South Africa
Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australia
Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (EMBRAPA), Brazil
Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), China
AgReasearch, New Zealand
Ministry For Primary Industries (MPI), New Zealand
M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University (MSU), Russian Federation
Colorado State University System (CSU System), United States
Funding: EU H2020 research project funding