California Pays Farmers to Add Nutrients to Soil

June 21, 2017 by Shanna Edberg

California’s Healthy Soils Initiative has set aside $7.5 million for a program paying farmers to add nutrients to the soil, such as by adding compost or planting cover crops that return organic matter to the soil. This measure could help the soil and the plants grown in it absorb millions of tons of carbon dioxide every year. It will also help crop growth, which has deteriorated over generations of tillage and monocropping. Healthier soils also help with water retention and filtration, reducing water runoff and improving water quality while helping to control erosion.

Climate Protection: Sequesters carbon dioxide Resilience: Controls erosion; helps with flood management Food & Water: Increases crop yields; improves water quality Health, Well-Being, & Safety: Reduces dust and air pollution

This post is part of a series on examples of ​multisolving, or climate-smart policies that simultaneously work to mitigate climate change while providing co-benefits such as the ones described above. The multiple benefits analysis was done using the ​FLOWER framework.