Cutting cotton carbon emissions: findings from Warangal, India

Cotton cultivation is generally characterised by unsustainable use of resources, such as overuse of pesticides, fertilisers and water for irrigation. WWF-India is working with farmers in Warangal district to promote better management practices (BMPs) in cotton so as to reduce the environmental impact associated with the overuse of inputs and resources. WWF-India is running a pilot project to estimate the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of cotton production systems, comparing traditionally grown cotton with BMP cotton. The principal areas of GHG emission in cotton production are crop management practices, fi eld energy use and transport of fertilisers. Sources of emissions include direct emissions from N-based fertiliser application, decomposition of organic matter, combustion of fuel in watering and field preparation; and indirect emissions from production of fertilisers and pesticides, and transport of nutrients. Carbon sequestration from applying organic matter and managing crop residues are also considered in the GHG emission estimation.