This white paper delves into the challenge of managing emissions of commercial and manure fertilizer into our waters. Even when farmers apply fertilizer at recommended agronomic rates, only 30-50 percent of the nitrogen added to the soil is taken up by the plant, with the rest lost to surface run-off, leaching of nitrates, ammonia volatilization or bacterial competition. The paper explores the social, geographic, economic and political factors which make directly regulating farms and ranches to reduce nonpoint pollution impractical and almost impossible.
Controlling Nutrient Runoff on Farms
Dekalb, IL: American Farmland Trust
August 31, 2013
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