We research grower innovations that build soil carbon

We measure and validate these farming systems & practices through the three lenses of economic viability, soil carbon science and adoptability. Our guiding principle is high impact, co-designed & collaborative research for communication and adoption.

We conduct high impact research to solve real world problems, by addressing knowledge gaps and contributing to the existing agricultural soil carbon evidence-base. Co-designed research is an iterative and dynamic process between researchers and farmers. At SoilCQuest 2031 we believe everyone has a role to play in research.

By collaborating with farmers, academia, industry and government, we support and enable research and the translation & integration of research across all sectors.

On-farm research

trials with growers

Down to Earth: Estimating Carbon Stocks with Remote Sensing Tools
SoilCQuest 2031 and Downforce Technologies partnered in a research project to test Downforce’s software for estimating soil organic carbon percentages (SOC%) under different farm management practices.

Downforce Technologies is ISO 14064-2 certified, making them the first company globally to offer ISO-certified remote soil organic carbon measurement and land management assessments.

Multiyear Intercropping Trial with grower Grant Sims at Pine Grove, northern VIC

SoilCQuest 2031 is undertaking a small plot trial in collaboration with cover crop expert grower Grant Sims from Down Under Covers.
Established in April 2022 and run over four growing seasons & years, this trial is exploring the effects of two intercropping combinations- canola & vetch and canola & faba beans compared to a monoculture crop.
In addition to this the effect of differing fertiliser regimes will be assessed with a more biological- based fertiliser regime of Bio Fert, Guano and Vermi cast, compared to local standards of MAP.

Research Trial for Climate Resilient Soils Network project 2020- 2021
The results highlight the challenge of both spatial and temporal soil heterogeneity, which in this case reverted or did not allow for detecting (short-term) changes in soil carbon content, soil aggregation or crop yield.

The adaptive research optimized a cross scale learning-by-doing approach including small plot trials, field scale strip trials and paddock scale trials.

To demonstrate the ultimate effectiveness of microbial management on soil properties, multi-season, spatially stratified and more in-depth coverage of soil heterogeneity are required than what was undertaken in this project.

The 2021 season was in no way rainfall limited so water use efficiency data was not able to be examined as initially planned. Yet, as part of the project, we were able to show the success of legume-cereal intercropping for nitrogen provision to minimise expensive nitrogen fertilisation for both the intercropped and subsequent growing period.

In this project one plot and three paddock-scale trials were conducted to investigate the influence of various microbial inoculants and farming systems on soil properties and agricultural yields with the aim to increase water use efficiency, boost soil carbon and climate resilience in agricultural systems.

SoilCQuest 2031 through the Climate Resilient Soils Network would like to thank the following people and groups for the amazing support over the period of this project:

    • Collaborating farmers Luke & Alex Wood, Stuart & Ellen McDonald & Steve Nicholson
    • Landcare networks Central West Lachlan Landcare, Mid Lachlan Landcare, Little River Landcare, Central Tablelands Landcare & Weddin Landcare
    • Industry supporters Kilter Rural, David Hardwick, Sumitomo Chemicals, Loam Bio, Top Soil Organics
    • Australian National University
    • The Ian Potter Foundation
    • The many farmers in Central NSW and beyond that continually give us support for our work.

Supporting farmers

trial & adopt practices

SoilCQuest 2031 brings research to the paddock to support big & small farming operations to build soil carbon for resilience and productivity.

We communicate research findings and facilitate pathways for farmers to build their capacity so they are supported to trial and adopt soil carbon- building practices.

Support Our Work

SoilCQuest is an independent, for purpose, not-for-profit organisation bringing science and agriculture together to increase soil carbon for profitable farming systems to respond to climate change. Your donation will support our research endeavours, enabling us to champion farming as a solution to climate impact through initiatives, including our Carbon Farmscapes Program.

Gifts made to SoilCQuest are tax deductible.