Farmers who've adopted no-till farming techniques may soon find
themselves saving the world, and making a killing in the process.
The state is spending $250,000 this year to study "carbon sequestration,"
a process of trapping carbon in the ground rather than releasing
it to the atmosphere, that some experts estimate could bring state
farmers up to $150 million a year in additional revenues.
The idea is that companies required by federal legislation to
curb their greenhouse gas emissions would pay farmers for emission
credits to offset their manufacturing operations. No-till cultivation
releases less carbon than plowing up soil, so farmers practicing
no-till could sell credits for between $5 and $60 a ton, much as
manufacturers now trade sulfur dioxide emission credits.