soil Carbon


research overview


To prove the business case while inspiring others with living proof that carbon farming benefits farmers, the community and our environment.


To share our work amongst multiple stakeholders and collaborators in order to most rapidly advance the global soil carbon research and verification standardization process


To have multidisciplinary, verified science to support our farming practices; to work collaboratively as part of a growing body of farmers, researchers, businesses, policy makers and NGOs; to help support global work towards carbon drawdown objectives

"Our approach is to integrate cropping system modeling and geospatial tools such as remote sensing or sensor data to understand the long-term sustainability of agricultural systems and to improve decision-making across a broad spectrum of stakeholders, from the smallholder farmer in the developing world to the industrial producer and policy maker at all scales."

Michigan State University


"Quick Carbon has developed an open-source technique to rapidly measure soil C concentrations in the field using low-cost field spectrometers and machine-learning algorithms powered by spectral and geospatial data, and our field technicians have collected over 6,000 soil samples in ten states across the continental US. Over the next two years we will use this dataset, along with publicly available soil archives, to build a fully-automated, cloud-based estimation tool, allowing land managers, researchers, and marketplace verifiers to instantly generate estimates of soil C in the field, anywhere in the United States. This novel methodology will allow the estimation of soil C stocks at landscape scales with levels of certainty that will give decision makers and marketplaces confidence in the quantification of soil stewardship and associated ecosystem service outcomes."

Yale Quick Carbon


"My approach is to integrate regional soil eco-physiography maps with actual local soil analysis in a manner that supports appropriate soil health assessment. Included in traditional soil analysis are biological attributes such as aerobic microbial respiration, presence of amino-N (organic-N) compounds and micro-aggregate stability."

Woods End Laboratories Inc.,

University of Maine School of Food and Agriculture



  • Link microbial community composition with specific functions of interest (e.g., carbon and nitrogen fixation and turnover, soil health parameters)

  • Identify biomarkers for microbial functions with established links to desirable outcomes (e.g., reduced greenhouse gas emissions, increased carbon storage, overall soil health)

  • Develop tools and guidelines for quantitative assessment of soil health biomarkers

  • Validate the approaches and apply to various agroecosystems

University of Tennessee,

Oak Ridge National Laboratory


"Kris’s work on the Caney Fork is focused on high-resolution soil carbon mapping using a novel combination of thoughtful remote sampling design (stratifi), rapid surface soil extraction, an affordable in-field spectrometer along with limited input from traditional laboratory techniques. Once parameterized for a local region, the models developed using this process have the potential to greatly reduce agricultural soil carbon inventory costs. Although potentially transformative for soil inventory and research, this process is grounded in the well-established ecosystem inventory techniques that underpin the now $750 million annual forest carbon credit market."

Skidmore College

Kristofer Covey

"My research goal is to understand ways to build resilient agroecosystems by adopting prudent and sustainable soil management practices. To achieve this goal, I closely study conservation management practices including cover cropping, no-tillage, crop rotations, biochar amendment, organic farming, and use of nitrogen efficiency enhancement products. My research uses routine soil physical, chemical and microbial analyses, as well as advanced isotopic, spectroscopic, chromatographic and wet chemical techniques to study changes in soil properties and processes in managed systems in response of natural and anthropogenic disturbances. Two major research areas my lab is currently focusing are quantification of soil health and greenhouse gas emissions from agroecosystems."

University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture


"My research interests focus on the interactions involving fungal systems in natural and synthetic environments to understand how plant and microbes interact as a final objective to build sustainable microbial systems and agroforestry ecosystem management for food and bioenergy crop production. The Fungal Genetics and biology lab that I lead uses a combination of cutting-edge technologies (from Next-Generation Sequencing, Post-Genomics, Molecular Genetics/Synthetic Biology to Microcosm Systems Biology) with specific emphasis on understanding the genetic and molecular mechanisms of the plant - fungus and microbe - fungus interactions. My research aims at tackling the scientific challenges of the U.S. DOE missions supporting the the sustainable bioenergy and bioproduct development."

Oak Ridge National Laboratory


Quick Carbon research

This summer a team of Skidmore College faculty and students collected hundreds of soil samples on the farm using their Quick Carbon technique. To learn more about their project check out the video below.

In October 2019 our team of researchers presented the work they have done on our farm over the past year.


Eric Toensmeier: A Global Toolkit of Perennial Crops & Regenerative Ag Proactices for Climate Change Mitigation & Food Security

USDA, NRCS: A Whole Farm & Ranch Greenhouse Gas Accounting System

Rodale Institute. "Regenerative Organic Agriculture and Climate Change:

A Down-to-Earth Solution to

Global Warming"

Global network of climate leaders working to solve the climate crisis through urgent action

United Nations Commission on Trade & Development. 2013 Report:

"Wake Up Before It's Too Late."

National Center for Appropriate Technology: Climate Change & Sustainable Agriculture

Caney Fork Farms

Carthage, TN

(615) 212-5234

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