Canadian Researchers are Responding to the Gap in Regenerative Studies Complete on Canadian Soil
- Strong data is supporting perennial forage systems as a better form of carbon capture, but there are still gaps in comparisons of different forage systems on soil carbon capture overall, with clear limitations in data on Canadian soil.
- Perennial forage systems have more carbon storage than annual crop systems. Standard cereal crops return roughly 20-30% of carbon to the soil, while perennials return up to 30-50%. These increases are highest when transitioning from annual cropping to perennial forage systems.
- The AAFC in southern Ontario, conducted a study in the 1950s that compared soil carbon of corn crop for 35 years continuously with the soil of grass; also monitored for 35 years continuously. There was a difference of 37 tonnes of carbon capture per hectare between the two systems.
- This information is useful but does not take into account the environmental conditions seen in Canada, which differ from North America. The AAFC in Nappan, Nova Scotia, in conjunction with the University of Dalhousie, is currently doing a study on the role of rotational grazing and carbon sequestration in eastern Canada. The desired effect is to produce more regenerative agriculture research under Canadian conditions and for Canadian farmers.