Conservation Agriculture is a farming system that promotes minimum soil disturbance (i.e. no tillage), maintenance of a permanent soil cover, and diversification of plant species. It enhances biodiversity and natural biological processes above and below the ground surface. This contributes to increased water and nutrient use efficiency and leads to improved and sustained crop production.
One of the greatest benefits of glyphosate is its ability to foster healthier soils by reducing the need for tillage (or ploughing). The ability to cultivate with reduced or no tillage (ploughing) thanks to the use of glyphosate has, thus, two positive environmental consequences:
- Carbon sequestration: carbon is stored in the soil instead of being released with the tillage
- Protection of soil fertility: the soil can retain higher water and moisture levels.
Glyphosate-based herbicides allow farmers to leave their soil intact while the previous year’s crop residue or organic matter remains on top of the soil. This significantly increases the amount of nutrients and microbes in the soil. In addition to creating a thriving environment for plant roots, using no-till and reduced till practices has been shown to reduce soil erosion by as much as 60% to 90%.