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Lawns with Healthy Soils for Climate Restoration
For a greener Massachusetts capturing more carbon dioxide and retaining more water.

Fight climate change with lawns that capture more carbon dioxide, sequestering more carbon in the soil while polluting less and requiring less water. 

For every 1 ton of liquid carbon that grass plants push into the ground through photosynthesis, the grass draws 3.67 tons of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere.


For a local context, there are nearly 160 acres of green space in Somerville. If our lawns and the soils below were healthy, our lawns could build an inch of soil a year and capture nearly 88,000 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. 

In Massachusetts, we have more than 2,000 square miles of lawns; we can make a difference if we all pledge not to spread fertilizer on our lawns. 

Allow grass roots to grow deep into the soil of established lawns by stopping the spread of quick-release fertilizer.

We are Heather and Olivia, ORI Fall Interns. Work with us to promote sustainable environmental practices with non-polluting lawns with healthy soils capturing more carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and holding more clean water in our communities. 

Join us in making the pledge to stop the spread of fertilizers and polluting herbicides and pesticides to revitalize established lawns and restore healthy soils.  

The Healthy Soils bill on Beacon Hill involves much more than agriculture, it involves our neighborhood green spaces.  Together, we can create healthier communities beginning with soil and lawns that capture carbon. 


Why stop using fertilizer?

Healthy, natural lawns take carbon out of the atmosphere, which helps fight global warming.

Stop spreading fertilizer that runs off into waterways, causing harmful algal blooms.

Let water percolate through the turf of natural lawns with healthy soils to recharge groundwater that cools rivers during summer.

Make the pledge. Add your voice to ours. Let’s work together for a greener Massachusetts drawing more CO2 from the air. 

For more information:

Why Stop Using Quick-release Fertilizer?
What is Slow-release Fertilizer?
The four most recommended slow-release fertilizers are Gro-sure All Purpose 6 months Feed, ChemPak Slow Release Feed+ Forget Garden Plant Year Long Fertilizer, Osmocote Controlled Release Plant Feed, and Miracle-Gro All Purpose Continuous Slow Release Plant Food.

How does fertilization affect my lawn’s soil food web?

Natural pest repellent lost with fertilizer application

What is soil compaction, and what does it have to do with fertilizer?

How does fertilizing affect water use

Harmful Algal Blooms, Eutrophication and Dead Zones

MA Towns with people pledging to steward lawns capturing more carbon

What’s happening to the climate in your yard? Four articles posted at ORI’s Boston Book Festival 2020 Marketplace



Where We're Working On This
Lawns with Healthy Soils for Climate Restoration. See where we're actively working on this.

How You Can Help
The Ocean River Institute provides individuals around the world with specific opportunities to make a difference saving wildlife, protecting ecosystems, in environmental education, science, and conservation.