In traditional agriculture soils are ploughed in order to support the mineralization of plant nutrients and to create a favourable soil structure for the growth of the crop roots. Ploughing however can also have adverse effects on soils, especially under hot and humid climate conditions. In this climatic context, tillage supports the fast decomposition of organic matter in the soil, it can contribute to the deterioration of the soil structure and support soil erosion. In contrast, conservation tillage is an approach to reduce mechanical tillage and incorporate the crop residues into the soil and thereby support biological processes.
GIZ (2010): Conservation Agriculture: Nachhaltiger Wirtschaften ohne Pflug? Dokumentation des Fachgesprächs vom 29.April 2010 in Bonn.
Neubert, S. (2011). Environmental Benefits of Conservation Agriculture. A literature review with special consideration of Zambia. Aid by Trade Foundation.
GIZ (1984): Soil tillage in the Tropics and Subtropics