With their soil made up of predominantly organic matter, the world’s peatlands store twice as much carbon dioxide, one of the climate-changing greenhouse gases, as its forests: an estimated 550 gigatons, to be precise. } However, we must caution that the problems with planting oil palms on deep peat escalated exponentially with the areas of peat, particularly in relation to the amount of good mineral soils in the plantation. Tropical lowland peats: to conserve or develop them. Biogeosciences 9: 1053-1071. RSPO manual on best management practices for existing oil palm cultivation on peat,pp214. When these peat soils are drained, the wood fragments do not decompose easily to add on to CO2 emission. Jour. MALAYSIA International Palm Oil Sustainability Conference. (1987) which showed good FFB response to N in the first 4 years of harvests only (Table 3). window.mc4wp.listeners.push({ He has published more than 100 research articles on the topic. For example, Agus et al., (2013) found that the emission from peat oxidation under oil palm cultivation was 43 t CO2 ha-1year-1. Maintenance of correct water levels is also important since hyperacidity seems to occur only during prolonged dry spell. are overlain with substantial formations of peat soils, almost unrivalled when compared to other parts of Malaysia. The completed operation leaves a 9.5 to 11.5 m wide area free of timber and compacted to a depth of 40 to 50 cm (Figure 2). (1987). [addw2p name=”problemSoils”] Gondang. The result: dangerous, destructive peat fires that produce greenhouse gases and endangering human life and animal habitats. The peat formations in some parts of Sibu Town are well over 10 metres in depth. While high water tables are responsible for preventing the organic material from decaying, the flipside is that when these peat soils are drained, they are again exposed to oxygen. Large areas of these forests are being logged at high rates. Planting density is also increased to 160 palms ha-1 to attain optimum leaf area index of 6.0 for production by the 10th year on this poor growing medium.  Friends of the Earth (2008) estimated the CO2 emissions to be 70  tonnes ha-1year-1 under oil palm cultivation. if (!window.mc4wp) { Therefore, this part of the lecture note is extensively drawn from a paper written by Gurmit et al. Farming is a major economic activity which has been successfully carried out on peatland in Malaysia; starting with planting of vegetables and cash crops such as pineapples and tapioca or cassava during the second half  of the 20th century. They are found in peatlands (also called bogs or mires). } Estimation of GHG emissions from peat used for agriculture with special reference to oil palm. In Malaysia, peat, add' sulfate soils, soil on sandy beach deposits, saline soils and soils on ultrabasic rocks are commonly referred to as problem soils. Thus, peat soils are also known as organic soils. The amount of drainage is another critical factor that determines CO2 emission; a higher emission is linked to deeper or more intense drainage. Most oil palm roots are concentrated in the top 50 cm of the peat soil. Soil Sci., March 1984 Google Scholar EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency). As such  sapric, hemic and fibric peat may also have the following wood fragments in the soil solum:-, Photo 1: Deep peat soil in Sarawak, Malaysia without wood.Â, Photo 2: Peat soil in Sarawak, Malaysia with  decomposing wood .Â, Photo 3: Peat soil in Sarawak, Malaysia with  undecomposed wood.Â. This peat has unique characteristics, which makes it significantly different from other peat. Oil palm has been grown on wet, organic peatlands for decades, but such cultivation has taken its toll on the land, leading to productivity loss and drainage. RSS, Leading the way in conservation opportunities and efforts, To promote the market expansion of Malaysian plam oil and its products by enhancing the image of palm oil and…, sapric  (very high stage of decomposition), hemic (moderate stage of decomposition) and, Cultivated tropical peat soils have lower CO2 emission than reported. This research investigated the compressibility of natural peat soil and peat soil improved with polyurethane foam. Most of researchers conducted investigations on the dynamic loading of soft soils such as sand and clay, but only a few had discovered the behaviour of peat in terms of static and dynamic loadings. This has been a consequence of the general lack of information and experience with tropical peat. As such, mapping virgin peat soil areas is not liked by many soil surveyors. However, over the years, as development progressed, more and more mineral ( non organic)  soils were used up and the borders of the peat swamps were reached. 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