University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Plant Sciences Departmental Seminars > Linkages between plants, soil microbes, and the carbon cycle

Linkages between plants, soil microbes, and the carbon cycle

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CPPS seminar

The last decade has witnessed an explosion of interest in the topic of soil carbon cycling. The main reason for this is that soils absorb and release greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide and methane, and act as a major global store of carbon. Indeed, the soil is the third largest global pool of carbon, after the oceanic and geological pools, and together with vegetation, it holds 2.7 times more carbon than the atmosphere. Despite the importance of soils for the carbon cycle, little is known about the factors that regulate the fluxes of carbon to and from soil, or about the role that interactions between plants and soil microbes play in regulating soil carbon sequestration. In this talk, I will illustrate, using examples from our recent research, of some of the routes by which plants and their functional traits can influence soil organisms and carbon dynamics, and how this understanding might be harnessed to enhance soil carbon sequestration in farming systems.

This talk is part of the Plant Sciences Departmental Seminars series.

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