Modeling the impact of mitigation options on methane abatement from rice fields

  • A.K. MisraEmail author
  • Maitri Verma
Original Article


The enhanced concentration of methane (CH4) in the atmosphere is significantly responsible for the ominous threat of global warming. Rice (Oryza) paddies are one of the largest anthropogenic sources of atmospheric CH4. Abatement strategies for mitigating CH4 emissions from rice fields offer an avenue to reduce the global atmospheric burden of methane and hence the associated menace of climate change. Projections on population growth suggest that world rice production must increase to meet the population’s food energy demand. In this scenario, those mitigation options are advocated which address both the objectives of methane mitigation and increased production of rice simultaneously. In this paper, we have formulated a nonlinear mathematical model to investigate the effectiveness and limitations of such options in reducing and stabilizing the atmospheric concentration of CH4 while increasing rice yield. In modeling process, it is assumed that implementation rate of mitigation options is proportional to the enhanced concentration of atmospheric CH4 due to rice fields. Model analysis reveals that implementation of mitigation options not always provides “win-win” outcome. Conditions under which these options reduce and stabilize CH4 emission from rice fields have been derived. These conditions are useful in devising strategies for effective abatement of CH4 emission from rice fields along with sustainable increase in rice yield. The analysis also shows that CH4 abatement highly depends on efficiencies of mitigation options to mitigate CH4 emission and improve rice production as well as on the implementation rate of mitigation options. Numerical simulation is carried out to verify theoretical findings.


Mathematical model Methane gas Rice paddies Sensitivity analysis Stability analysis 



The authors are grateful to the handling editor and the anonymous reviewers for their useful comments, which have improved the quality of this paper. The second author thankfully acknowledges the University Grants Commission, New Delhi, India for providing financial assistance in the form of Senior Research Fellowship (20-12/2009(ii) EU-IV).


  1. Ali MA, Farouque MG, Haque M, Kabir AU (2012) Influence of soil amendments on mitigating methane emissions and sustaining rice productivity in paddy soil ecosystems of Bangladesh. J Environ Sci & Natural Resources 5(1):179–185.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Aulakh MS, Wassmann R, Bueno C, Rennenberg H (2001) Impact of root exudates of different cultivars and plant development stages of rice (Oryza sativa L.) on methane production in a paddy soil. Plant Soil 230:77–86CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bortz DM, Nelson PW (2004) Sensitivity analysis of a nonlinear lumped parameter model of HIV infection dynamics. Bull Math Biol 66:1009–1026CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bouwman AF (1991) Agronomic aspects of wetland rice cultivation and associated methane emissions. Biochemistry 15:65–88Google Scholar
  5. Cao M, Gregson K, Marshall S, Dent JB, Heal OW (1996) Global methane emissions from rice paddies. Chemosphere 33(5):879–897CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Freedman HI, So JWH (1985) Global stability and persistence of simple food chains. Math Biosci 76:69–86CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Ghosh S, Majumdar D, Jain MC (2003) Methane and nitrous oxide emissions from an irrigated rice of north India. Chemosphere 51:181–195CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Harris JM, Kennedy S (1999) Carrying capacity in agriculture: global and regional issues. Ecol Econ 29:443–461CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Holling CS (1959) The components of predation as revealed by a study of small-mammal predation of the European pine sawfly. Can Entomol 91:293–320CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Husin YA, Murdiyarso D, Khalil MAK, Rasmussen RA, Shearer MJ, Sabiham S, Sunar A, Adijuwana H (1995) Methane flux from Indonesian wetland rice: the effects of water management and rice variety. Chemosphere 31(4):3153–3180CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. IPCC (2007a) Changes in atmospheric constituents and in radiative forcing. In: Solomon S, Qin D, Manning M, Chen Z, Marquis M, Averyt KB, Tignor M, Miller HL (eds) Climate change 2007: The physical science basis. Contribution of working group I to the fourth assessment report of the intergovernmental panel on climate change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USAGoogle Scholar
  12. IPCC (2007b) Agriculture. In: Metz B, Davidson O R, Bosch PR, Dave R, Meyer LA (eds) Climate change 2007: mitigation. Contribution of working group III to the fourth assessment report of the intergovernmental panel on climate change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USAGoogle Scholar
  13. Itoh M, Sudo S, Mori S, Saito H, Yoshida T, Shiratori Y, Suga S, Yoshikawa N, Suzue Y, Mizukami H, Mochida T, Yagi K (2011) Mitigation of methane emissions from paddy fields by prolonging midseason drainage. Agric Ecosyst Environ 141:359–372CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Khosa MK, Sidhu BS, Benbi DK (2011) Methane emission from rice fields in relation to management of irrigation water. J Environ Biol 32:169–172Google Scholar
  15. LaSalle JP, Lefschetz S (1961) Stability by Lyapunov’s second method with applications. Academic Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  16. Li C, Qiu J, Frolking S, Xiao X, Salas W, Moore B III, Boles S, Huang Y, Sass R (2002) Reduced methane emissions from large-scale changes in water management of China’s rice paddies during 1980–2000. Geophys Res Lett 29(20):33CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Linquist BA, Adviento-Borbe MA, Pittelkow CM, Kessel C van, Groenigen KJ van (2012) Fertilizer management practices and greenhouse gas emissions from rice systems: A quantitative review and analysis. Field Crops Res 135:10–21CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Lu WF, Chen W, Duan BW, Guo WM, Lu Y, Lantin RS, Wassmann R, Neue HU (2000) Methane emissions and mitigation options in irrigated rice fields in southeast China. Nutr Cycl Agroecosyst 58:65–73CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Matthews R, Wassmann R (2003) Modelling the impacts of climate change and methane emission reductions on rice production: a review. Eur J Agron 19:573–598CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Minami K (1995) The effect of nitrogen fertilizer use and other practices on methane emission from flooded rice. Fertil Res 40:71–84CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Osman KA, Mustafa AM, Ali F, Yonglain Z, Fazhan Q (2012) Genetic variability for yield and related attributes of upland rice genotypes in semi arid zone (Sudan). Afr J Agric Res 7(33):4613–4619CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Perko L (2000) Differential Equations and Dynamical Systems, 3rd edn. Springer-VerlagGoogle Scholar
  23. Rao MRM (1981) Ordinary differential equations: theory and applications. East-West Press Pvt LtdGoogle Scholar
  24. Rath AK, Swain B, Ramakrishnan B, Panda D, Adhya TK, Rao VR, Sethunathan N (1999) Influence of fertilizer management and water regime on methane emission from rice fields. Agric Ecosyst Environ 76:99–107CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Rosenzweig C, Tubiello FN (2007) Adaptation and mitigation strategies in agriculture: an analysis of potential synergies. Mitig Adapt Strategies Glob Change 12:855–873CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Sass RL, Fisher FM, Wang YB, Turner FT, Jund MF (1992) Methane emission from rice fields: The effect of floodwater management. Glob Biogeochem Cycles 6(3):249–262CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Sass RL, Fisher FM, Lewis ST, Jund MF, Turner FT (1994) Methane emissions from rice fields: Effect of soil properties. Glob Biogeochem Cycles 8(2):135–140CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Schütz H, Seiler W, Conrad R (1990) Influence of soil temperature on methane emission from rice paddy fields. Biogeochemistry 11(2):77–95CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Setyanto P, Rosenani AB, Boer R, Fauziah CI, Khanif MJ (2004) The effect of rice cultivars on methane emission from irrigated rice field. Indones J Agric Sci 5(1):20–31Google Scholar
  30. Shin YK, Yun SH, Park ME, Lee BL (1996) Mitigation options for methane emission from rice fields in Korea. Ambio 25(4):289–291Google Scholar
  31. Singh SN, Verma A, Tyagi L (2003) Investigating options for attenuating methane emission from Indian rice fields. Environ Int 29:547–553CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Tyagi L, Kumari B, Singh SN (2010) Water management – a tool for methane mitigation from irrigated paddy fields. Sci Total Environ 408:1085–1090CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Xie B, Zheng X, Zhou Z, Gu J, Zhu B, Chen X, Shi Y, Wang Y, Zhao Z, Liu C, Yao Z, Zhu J (2010) Effects of nitrogen fertilizer on CH 4 emission from rice fields: multi-site field observations. Plant Soil 326:393–401CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Xu S, Jaffe PR, Mauzerall DL (2007) A process-based model for methane emission from flooded rice paddy systems. Ecol Model 205:475–491CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Yagi K, Tsuruta H, Kanda K, Minami K(1996) Effect of water management on methane emission from a Japanese rice paddy field: Automated methane monitoring. Glob Biogeochem Cycles 10(2):255–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Yagi K, Tsuruta H, Minami K (1997) Possible options for mitigating methane emission from rice cultivation. Nutr Cycl Agroecosyst 49:213–220CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Wang ZY, Xu Y C, Li Z, Guo YX, Wassmann R, Neue HU, Lantin RS, Buendia LV, Ding YP, Wang ZZ (2000) A four-year record of methane emissions from irrigated rice fields in the Beijing region of China. Nutr Cycl Agroecosyst 58:55–63CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Wassmann R, Lantin RS, Neue HU, Buendia LV, Corton TM, Lu Y (2000) Characterization of methane emissions from rice fields in Asia. III. Mitigation options and future research needs. Nutr Cycl Agroecosyst 58:23–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Wassmann R, Hosen Y, Sumfleth K (2009) Reducing Methane Emissions from Irrigated Rice. Focus 16, Brief 3, An Agenda for Negotiation in Copenhagen 2020 vision for food, agriculture and the environment. Washington, D.C, International Food Policy Research InstituteGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mathematics, Faculty of ScienceBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia

Personalised recommendations