Organic agriculture and carbon fixation

Evaluating the claims of a US field study

This report examines the claims made in a long-term field study on organic farming carried out by the Rodale Institute in the United States, which concludes that organic farming can remove "up to 1,000 pounds of carbon per acre-foot" from the atmosphere. In metric terms this means fixation of about 1100 kg of carbon per hectare. Although these figures could not be precisely verified, a literature study and independent experts confirm that organic farming can fix 2 to 4 times more carbon in soils than conventional agriculture. This means that up to 1% of the Netherlands� climate control commitment could be covered if the Dutch government�s target of 10% organic farming acreage is attained in 2010.

Report in Dutch

Delft, October 2005