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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Columbus, Ohio » Soil Drainage Research » Research » Research Project #441495

Research Project: Using Edge-of-Field Data and Modeling to Inform H2Ohio

Location: Soil Drainage Research

Project Number: 5080-13210-003-022-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Oct 1, 2021
End Date: Sep 30, 2026

The H2Ohio initiative, a program to protect Ohio waters) has identified ten practices that are expected to reduce nutrient, especially phosphorus delivery to Lake Erie. The specific objective of this research will be to investigate a subset of the practices and provide quantitative data on their effectiveness at reducing field scale nutrient loss.

The approach is two pronged. The field research will be conducted on our edge-of- field (EOF) network using a before-after control-impact (BACI) design. Baseline data has already been collected at the paired field locations. A field scale treatment, based on the ten H2Ohio target practices will be implemented on one field while managing the other field in the pair with prevailing practices and then measure both surface and subsurface (tile) discharge and water quality to quantify and determine the impact of the treatment practice. The treatment phase will be conducted for a minimum one crop rotation (i.e., 2 yrs for corn-soybean rotation or 3 yrs for corn-soybean-wheat rotation). The primary response variables will be discharge, nitrate-nitrogen, and dissolved and total phosphorus. The modeling portion will be conducted through a collaborative agreement. Using data already collected as part of the ARS research program and the new data being collected from practice implementation identified above, a field scale hydrology/water quality model will be parameterized and calibrated for the specific practice and location. Once calibrated, Monte Carlo simulations will be run by varying the input parameters based on the prevailing distributions of soils, soil chemistry, management, crop rotations, climate, etc. within the Western Lake Erie Basin watershed to provide a probability distribution of the field scale impact expected from the practice adoption.