The risks of sugarcane management on soil microbes and their relationships with soil physicochemical factors and biogeochemical processes have not been described from an integrated perspective for different agronomic practices. Here, we provide a platform for multi-analytical interactions between ecologists analyzing the soil microbes at multiple ecological levels and geoscientists measuring the release of greenhouse gases and the physicochemical soil factors including labile fractions from soil organic matter in tropical sugarcane management systems. We compile the benefits and risks of nutrient management and soil amendments as well as of crop residue and harvest management in sugarcane soils on belowground microbial life and biogeochemical processes mediated by soil microbial communities, and we demonstrate that the massive planting of the crop brings environmental risks that include a potential impact on tropical soil ecosystem sustainability. We emphasize that soil management and harvest management are critical for supporting the sustainable development of biofuel production in tropical areas.
Part of the book: Sugarcane