Submission Date

7-20-2018

Document Type

Paper- Restricted to Campus Access

Department

Biology

Faculty Mentor

Denise Finney

Comments

Presented during the 20th Annual Summer Fellows Symposium, July 20, 2018 at Ursinus College.

Project Description

Agricultural practices are a known contributor to climate change as carbon emissions enter the atmosphere. Discovering techniques for farmers to increase carbon storage within their soils can aid in mitigating climate change and foster greater productivity. One such technique may be increasing diversity in cropping systems, as ecological studies have demonstrated a positive relationship between plant diversity and productivity. The diversity productivity relationship has been primarily studied aboveground, but belowground, root biomass plays a role in creating long-term carbon stores and may be a better indicator of carbon sequestration than aboveground biomass. We expect that increasing plant diversity will increase both the amount of roots present underground and the rooting depths that are reached to aid in carbon sequestration.

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