The project is based on the choice of certain management practices that could help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural land and thereby mitigate the role of such systems as emitters. Agricultural soils are the main emitters of nitrous oxide (N2O) and, in turn, have the capacity to sequester atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2).
In relation with the role of agricultural management regarding climate change, the main objective of this project is to further the study of the impact of different agricultural practices on greenhouse gas emissions in rainfed and irrigated systems in Mediterranean regions.
There is an increasing amount of information in Spain on the role of agricultural management in greenhouse gas emissions from the soil to the atmosphere. However, there are still areas and practices that have not been studied in sufficient detail and for which, therefore, little is known about their impact on greenhouse gas emissions.
This project is focuses on the study of four main agronomic practices with regard to field crops: nitrogen fertilization, soil and residue management, irrigation management and cultivation system, in order to identify agricultural management strategies that can help to mitigate greenhouse gas (CO2, N2O and CH4) emissions from the spoil to the atmosphere. The project covers two of the largest agricultural regions of Spain (the Ebro Valley and the Guadalquivir Valley) and will involve researchers from eight research centres.
The project has been funded by MINECO as part of the 2013 Call by the Spanish State Programme for Research, Development and Innovation Aimed at Society’s Challenges.
The research being conducted by this project is based on sustainable agricultural practices, and therefore forms part of SDG 2, mainly contributing to the target that proposes ensuring sustainable food production systems and implementing resilient agricultural practices that increase productivity and production, strengthening the capacity for adaptation to climate change. Likewise, the practices being studied will benefit compliance with SDG 13, as it takes measures in the field of agriculture to combat one of the main focuses of climate change: the production of greenhouse gases.
Given the importance of agricultural soils for emitting greenhouse gases, the results of this project will help to establish management strategies and recommendations that are adapted to our Mediterranean agriculture systems to help mitigate greenhouse gas emissions derived from agricultural activity.