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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Implementing the Smaf for Environmental Quality Policy: Water Quality Implications in Iowa


Submitted to: Soil and Water Conservation Society
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: July 28, 2004
Publication Date: July 28, 2004
Citation: Hatfield, J.L., Karlen, D.L. 2004. Implementing the SMAF for environmental quality policy: water quality implications in Iowa [abstract]. Soil and Water Conservation Society. Available:

Technical Abstract: Environmental quality concerns resulting from nitrate leaching or phosphorus runoff have prompted a series of discussions throughout Iowa and the Midwest. Reduction of NO3- and P levels in water surrounded by farm land has increased interest in soil management practices. Increasing the quality of the soil as a mechanism for water management has the potential to improve water quality while increasing the production efficiency for producers. Increasing the adoption of conservation tillage to increase the soil organic matter content and decrease surface runoff would have a positive impact on both N and P retention on the field. The soil management assessment framework (SMAF) is a tool that may help producers assess their fields and management practices to determine the potential for improving their soils. Combining the SMAF with a nitrate leaching and phosphorus runoff indices will help producers understand the linkage between soil management and environmental quality and help them evaluate potential effects associated with alternative management practices. Implementation of this enhanced soil management assessment framework will require a widespread effort across Iowa but is anticipated to have a positive impact on both water and soil quality.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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