CIBO Certified Crop Advisor Pathway:
Nutrient Management Planning: An Overview
November 17, 2014
Programs such as the Chesapeake Bay Program and the Nutrient Management Act in Pennsylvania have focused attention on improving nutrient management on Commonwealth farms.
The environmental problems associated with nutrients most often are caused by animal manure. Applying manure in excess of crop needs or at the wrong time, or handling it improperly may release nutrients into the air or water, where they no longer contribute to crop production and may act as pollutants. The leaching of nitrogen through the soil can raise groundwater nitrate levels. In addition, runoff and erosion may increase nitrogen and phosphorus levels in surface waters, which can lead to eutrophication and related problems such as algae scums, odors, and loss of fish populations. Good nutrient management planning can help to avoid some of these problems.
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