Increasing Microbial Biomass is the Key to Sequestering Carbon in Soil

By Judith Fitzpatrick, Ph.D Prolific Life Sciences, Inventor of Microbiometer

Reducing the 20% of CO2 contributed by agricultural practice and carbon sequestration (CSQ) the storage of soil organic carbon (SOC) in soil, are strategies for remediation of global warming that could have enormous impact on this goal.

The methods proposed for monitoring the success of CSQ have focused on measurement of SOC by dry combustion. SOC is the stably stored bodies of dead microbes and the by-products of microbial digestion, Dry combustion has 2 big drawbacks, high cost and low sensitivity because SOC increases slowly and about 10 years are required to confirm CSQ. Too bad if you were on the wrong track!

Approximately 90% of farms in the U.S. are conventional, with typically less than 100 ug microbial biomass carbon/g of soil (MBC). However, regenerative farming increases this to at least 200 ug MBC/g soil.

An increase of 100 ug MBC /g by converting to regenerative practices would increase the total microbial carbon by 80 million metric tons, which corresponds to 293 million metric tons of CO2 – 50 times the amount of CO2 emitted per year in the U.S.

soil health, soil microbiome,

Moreover, as SOC is 60-80% the bodies of dead microbes, as long as the increase is maintained or increased, CSQ is increasing and many other MBC benefits such as decreased erosion, increased drought resistance and decreased need for pesticides are being attained.

The microBIOMETER® test enables using MBC as a standard as it replaces expensive MBC testing and includes fungal to bacterial ratio (F:B). It can be done on site or in labs, correlates 92% with Chloroform Fumigation Extraction (CFE) and costs less than $10. We have demonstrated that the F:B ratio correlates >90% with the inverse of the metabolic quotient (q): numerous studies confirm that a high F:B ratio and low q are associated with CSQ.

Adoption of MBC testing as a standard for carbon sequestration progression should improve implementation of regenerative agriculture and CSQ.

The microBIOMETERs are available in Iowa and throughout the Midwest through RegenAgriTech, and RegenIOWA. In support of its goal of converting 1 Million Acres of conventional farmland to Regenerative Farmland, RegenIOWA is engaging with citizen farmer scientist to test local farm land for farmers and encourage the conversion to Regenerative farming and RegenAgriTech practices for benefits in yield, profit, soil, animal and farmer/family health.

For information how you can acquire a microBIOMETER at an approximate cost of $225.00, send us an email (RegenIowaNow “at” or call us at 319-330-9805. The MBC test saves the farmer approximately $65 per test and is complete on site in about 10 minutes versus 1-2 weeks when sent to a lab.

Published by Elizabethp

RegenIowa restores the indigenous soil ecosystem and seeks to convert 1 million acres from conventional, fertilizer based farming to biological farming by 2025, in Iowa. This is done with soil conditioning, minerals and a combination of a broad biodiversity of local fungi, protozoans, bacteria, microscopic insects and other soil life. This microbiome cycles plant nutrients which feeds plants the way nature intended. Mitigating climate change and better food are additional benefits.

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