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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

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Fractionation of AgroResources and Environment lab

10 May 2017 - A review on the mechanisms of storage and loss of carbon in soils

10 May 2017 - A review on the mechanisms of storage and loss of carbon in soils
Soil carbon stocks depend both on carbon inputs and outputs. They are the consequence of interconnected mechanisms, acting at fine spatial scales, which stabilize/destabilize soil organic carbon.

The 4 per 1000 international initiative supports States and non-governmental stakeholders in their efforts towards a better management of soil carbon stocks. We are involved in the CarboSMS consortium which federates French researchers working on these mechanisms and their action on carbon stocks in a local or global change setting (land use, agricultural practices, climatic and soil conditions).

We have organized a seminar dedicated to this issue in 2016 and published this review in collaboration with 11 French labs. We present recent advances in understanding of the biotic and abiotic mechanisms involved in soil organic carbon stabilization / destabilization. We also explain how agricultural practices influence these mechanisms, and consequently soil carbon stocks.

Finally, review addresses upscaling issues. We examine how to integrate the recent knowledge on stabilization/destabilization mechanisms in global models and how to account for it in the definition of new indicators in order to enhance the prediction of soil organic carbon stocks.

Read: Dignac M-F, Derrien D, Barré P, Barot S, Cécillon ., Chenu .,  Chevallier T, Freschet GT, Garnier P, Guenet B, Hedde M, Klumpp K,  Lashermes G, Maron P-A, Nunan N, Roumet C, Basile-Doelsch I, 2017. Increasing soil carbon storage: mechanisms, effects of agricultural practices and proxies. A review. Agronomy for Sustainable Development. DOI

Contact: Dr Gwenaëlle Lashermes,