Powlson & Galdos (2023): Challenging claimed benefits of soil carbon sequestration for mitigating climate change and increasing crop yields: heresy or sober realism?

David S. Powlson, Marcelo V. Galdos IN: Global Change Biology, https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.16640

The two claims challenged by the authors are: 1. Sequestration of C in agricultural soils can make a substantial contribution to climate change mitigation. 2. Increasing SOC will routinely lead to increased crop yields and contribute to global food security. The authors are particularly critical of these two assertions being combined to make the claim that SOC sequestration is a “win-win” strategy. They point out that climate change and food security have both been described as “wicked problems” of “daunting complexity” so blanket solutions that claim to solve both “should prompt some degree of scepticism.”