Cultivation generally leads to reduction of soil organic carbon, which, without offsetting practices, is exacerbated by corn-stover removal. A mechanistic understanding of long-term harvesting effects on soil fertility and other aspects of sustainability is essential for predictive models and monitoring procedures.
Credit or Source: W. W. Wilhelm, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska.
U.S. DOE. 2006. Breaking the Biological Barriers to Cellulosic Ethanol: A Joint Research Agenda, DOE/SC/EE-0095, U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science and Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. (p. 69) (website)