Scientist: Chemical Group Helps Organic Soils Store More Carbon

"Phil Robertson may be on the cusp of solving a long-standing mystery."

"Boosters of organic food often say the practice, which rejects synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, is a good method for curbing climate change because it stores more carbon in the soil. But aside from anecdotal observations, no one could really explain the dynamics behind why organic fields keep more carbon underground than conventional ones.

Robertson, a researcher at Michigan State University's Kellogg Biological Station, thinks he might have an answer: a chemical group called phenolics, a class of complex compounds that also protect plants from disease and pests."

Tiffany Stecker reports for ClimateWire June 11, 2013.

Thursday, June 13, 2013