Title: Mitigation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Agricultural Fields through Bioresource Management
Abstract: Efficient bioresource management can alter soil biochemistry and soil physical properties, leading to reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agricultural fields. The objective of this study was to evaluate the role of organic amendments including biodigestate (BD), biochar (BC), and their combinations with inorganic fertilizer (IF) in increasing carbon sequestration potential and mitigation of GHG emissions from potato (Solanum tuberosum) fields. Six soil amendments including BD, BC, IF, and their combinations BDIF and BCIF, and control (C) were replicated four times under a completely randomized block design during the 2021 growing season of potatoes in Prince Edward Island, Canada. An LI-COR gas analyzer was used to monitor emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O) from treatment plots. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) results depicted higher soil moisture-holding capacities in plots at relatively lower elevations and comparatively lesser volumetric moisture content in plots at higher elevations. Soil moisture was also impacted by soil temperature and rainfall events. There was a significant effect of events of data collection, i.e., the length of the growing season (p-value ≤ 0.05) on soil surface temperature, leading to increased GHG emissions during the summer months. ANOVA results also revealed that BD, BC, and BCIF significantly (p-value ≤ 0.05) sequestered more soil organic carbon than other treatments. The six experimental treatments and twelve data collection events had significant effects (p-value ≤ 0.05) on the emission of CO2. However, the BD plots had the least emissions of CO2 followed by BC plots, and the emissions increased with an increase in atmospheric/soil temperature. Results concluded that organic fertilizers and their combinations with inorganic fertilizers help to reduce the emissions from the agricultural soils and enhance environmental sustainability.