Can Organic Farming help to Curb Greenhouse Gas Emissions?

Published Date : Jul 21, 2015

Organic farming is considered better than conventional farming in several aspects. The produce from organic farming is considered to be healthier for consumption. Also, the several processes involved in organic farming are considered to be relatively good for the environmental health. However, one aspect of organic farming that could see improvement is their impact on the greenhouse gas emissions.

Is it possible for organic farming to reduce the carbon footprint? Currently, certain standards placed by government and other official agencies want organic farmers to use techniques that reduce the greenhouse gas emissions. However, these techniques are not a compulsion for organic farmers to be implemented. This makes it doubtful if organic farming can actually help to reduce carbon emissions.

Nevertheless, several farmers around the world involved in organic farming tend to use practices for farming which do in fact help to decrease the greenhouse gas emissions. However, these are not enough. Hence, much more farmers need to adopt organic farming practices or even conventional farmers need to adopt practices that help to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions. Organic farming avoids the use of synthetic fertilizers that helps to curb carbon emissions to a certain degree.

According to recent study conducted at the Rodale Institute, if all conventional agricultural land implemented organic farming practices including tilling and seasonal rotations of crop then they could help in theory to curb 100 per cent of the annual greenhouse gas emissions.

On the other hand, certain studies contradict this. They said that this conclusion is premature since lower greenhouse gas emissions actually depend upon the quantity of fertilizer, which is used on conventional or organic farm and also on the amount of produce that has been grown per acre of land. More research is required to understand the potential of organic farming practices and how they can help to reduce these environmentally damaging carbon emissions.