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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Solutions to Water and Soil Quality Issues: Nutrients

Authors
item Meisinger, John
item Sharpley, Andrew

Submitted to: National Animal Waste Initiative Workshop
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: September 13, 1999
Publication Date: August 12, 2000
Citation: Meisinger, J.J., Sharpley, A.N. 2000. Solutions to water and soil quality issues: nutrients[abstract]. National Animal Waste Initiative Workshop. p. 1.

Technical Abstract: The Clean Water Act of 1972 has resulted in the identification and treatment of many point sources of pollution. Increased attention, however, is being directed towards agricultural nonpoint sources of water degradation. Most environmental concerns center on nonpoint transport of the nutrients nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P), which are essential inputs for optimum crop and animal production. Due to differing mobilities in soil, N concerns usually center on nitrate movement through soil to ground water or ammonia losses to the atmosphere, while P concerns focus on surface runoff losses. The recent intensification and specialization of agricultural production systems has resulted in the transfer of nutrients from grain-producing areas to animal-producing areas, an accumulation of P and N in soils, and an increased potential for nutrient movement from agricultural landscapes into the nation's waters. Reducing nutrient movement for animal agriculture will involve the development and implementation of site-specific manure nutrient management plans and best management practices (BMP's), which are underpinned by scientifically sound data. In order to minimize soil and water quality impacts of manure nutrients, there is a need for research on: i) the fundamental fate and transformations of manure nutrients, ii) development of an array of specific nutrient management 'tools', iii) development of techniques to identify high nutrient loss areas on a landscape, and iv) development of a whole-farm 'systems' approach to manure management.

Last Modified: 10/22/2014