Science.gov

Sample records for agriculture environmental benefits

  1. Utilization of FGD gypsum in agriculture for environmental benefits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This paper will discuss the utilization of FGD gypsum in agriculture for environmental benefits. Gypsum (CaSO4 .2H2O) has been used as an agricultural soil amendment for over 250 years. It is a soluble source of calcium and sulfur for crops and has been shown to improve soil physical and chemical pr...

  2. CONSERVATION AGRICULTURE: ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS OF REDUCED TILLAGE AND SOIL CARBON MANAGEMENT IN WATER LIMITED AREAS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural carbon (C) sequestration may be one of the most cost effective ways to slow processes of global warming and enhance plant available water. Numerous environmental benefits and enhanced water use efficiency result from agricultural activities that sequester soil C and contribute to crop p...

  3. Applications of remote sensing to precision agriculture with dual economic and environmental benefits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seielstad, George; Laguette, Soizik; Seelan, Santhosh K.; Lawrence, Rick; Nielsen, Gerald A.; Clay, David; Dalsted, Kevin

    2002-01-01

    In the U.S. Northern Great Plains, growing seasons are short but extremely productive. Farms and ranches are large, so many of precision agriculture's early adopters reside in the region. Crop yield maps at season's end reveal sizable variations across fields. Farm management relying upon uniform chemical applications is ineffective and wasteful. We provided information about crop and range status in near- real-time, so that in-season decisions could be made to optimize final yields and minimize environmental degradation. We created learning communities, in which information is shared among scientists, farmers, ranchers, and data providers. The new information for agricultural producers was satellite and aerial imagery. Value-added information was derived from ETM+, AVHRR, IKONOS, and MIDOS sensors. The emphasis was on reducing the time between acquisition of data by a satellite and delivery of value-added products to farmers and ranchers. To distribute large spatial data sets in short times to rural users we relied upon satellite transmission (Direct PC). Results include: (1) management zone delineation, (2) variable-rate fertilizer applications, (3) weed detection, (4) irrigation efficiency determination, (5) detection of insect infestation, (6) specification of crop damage due to inadvertent chemical application, and (7) determination of livestock carrying capabilities on rangelands.

  4. Agriculture, Environmental Education Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Project I-C-E, Green Bay, WI.

    This agriculture guide, for use at the secondary level, is one of a series of guides, K-12, which were developed by teachers to help introduce environmental education into the total curriculum. Environmental problems are present in every community where agriculture education is offered, and therefore many agriculture teachers have included some…

  5. Changes in historical Iowa land cover as context for assessing the environmental benefits of current and future conservation efforts on agricultural lands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gallant, Alisa L.; Sadinski, Walt; Roth, Mark F.; Rewa, Charles A.

    2011-01-01

    Conservationists and agriculturists face unprecedented challenges trying to minimize tradeoffs between increasing demands for food, fiber, feed, and biofuels and the resulting loss or reduced values of other ecosystem services, such as those derived from wetlands and biodiversity (Millenium Ecosystem Assessment 2005a, 2005c; Maresch et al. 2008). The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-234, Stat. 923, HR 2419, also known as the 2008 Farm Bill) reauthorized the USDA to provide financial incentives for agricultural producers to reduce environmental impacts via multiple conservation programs. Two prominent programs, the Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) and the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), provide incentives for producers to retire environmentally sensitive croplands, minimize erosion, improve water quality, restore wetlands, and provide wildlife habitat (USDA FSA 2008a, 2008b; USDA NRCS 2002). Other conservation programs (e.g., Environmental Quality Incentives Program, Conservation Stewardship Program) provide incentives to implement structural and cultural conservation practices to improve the environmental performance of working agricultural lands. Through its Conservation Effects Assessment Project, USDA is supporting evaluation of the environmental benefits obtained from the public investment in conservation programs and practices to inform decisions on where further investments are warranted (Duriancik et al. 2008; Zinn 1997).

  6. Benefits to world agriculture through remote sensing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buffalano, A. C.; Kochanowski, P.

    1976-01-01

    Remote sensing of agricultural land permits crop classification and mensuration which can lead to improved forecasts of production. This technique is particularly important for nations which do not already have an accurate agricultural reporting system. Better forecasts have important economic effects. International grain traders can make better decisions about when to store, buy, and sell. Farmers can make better planting decisions by taking advantage of production estimates for areas out of phase with their own agricultural calendar. World economic benefits will accrue to both buyers and sellers because of increased food supply and price stabilization. This paper reviews the econometric models used to establish this scenario and estimates the dollar value of benefits for world wheat as 200 million dollars annually for the United States and 300 to 400 million dollars annually for the rest of the world.

  7. INTEGRATING SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE, ECOLOGY, AND ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Current agricultural practices are contributing to environmental degradation, which also threatens the sustainability of agricultural production. cology has the potential to contribute significantly to the development of a sustainable and environmentally sound agriculture. owever...

  8. Environmental benefits of chemical propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hayes, Joyce A.; Goldberg, Benjamin E.; Anderson, David M.

    1995-01-01

    This paper identifies the necessity of chemical propulsion to satellite usage and some of the benefits accrued through monitoring global resources and patterns, including the Global Climate Change Model (GCM). The paper also summarized how the satellite observations are used to affect national and international policies. Chemical propulsion, like all environmentally conscious industries, does provide limited, controlled pollutant sources through its manufacture and usage. However, chemical propulsion is the sole source which enables mankind to launch spacecraft and monitor the Earth. The information provided by remote sensing directly affects national and international policies designed to protect the environment and enhance the overall quality of life on Earth. The resultant of chemical propulsion is the capability to reduce overall pollutant emissions to the benefit of mankind.

  9. Evaluating the Benefits of Peri-Urban Agriculture.

    PubMed

    Brinkley, Catherine

    2012-08-01

    By uniting literature from farmland preservation, growth management, food systems, economics, bioengineering, and environmental studies, this article provides an overview and valuation of the services that farms provide for urban areas. This article first analyzes the mission statements of 130 nationally accredited land trusts to ascertain the criteria used in preserving farmland. Land trusts present uniform preference for parcels that provide ecosystem services, wildlife habitat, viewsheds, local heritage, and agricultural productivity. The list of benefits provided by land trusts was compared to a literature review drawing from farmland amenity, agritourism, farmland preservation, and ecosystems studies to reveal the range of market values for the various benefits of farmland. The market value of farmland services varies from -$37,541 to 124,000 per acre depending on the method of analysis and location of the farm. This research has strong implications for land-use planning, economic opportunities, and ecosystems infrastructure in peri-urban areas. PMID:25324593

  10. Evaluating the Benefits of Peri-Urban Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Brinkley, Catherine

    2014-01-01

    By uniting literature from farmland preservation, growth management, food systems, economics, bioengineering, and environmental studies, this article provides an overview and valuation of the services that farms provide for urban areas. This article first analyzes the mission statements of 130 nationally accredited land trusts to ascertain the criteria used in preserving farmland. Land trusts present uniform preference for parcels that provide ecosystem services, wildlife habitat, viewsheds, local heritage, and agricultural productivity. The list of benefits provided by land trusts was compared to a literature review drawing from farmland amenity, agritourism, farmland preservation, and ecosystems studies to reveal the range of market values for the various benefits of farmland. The market value of farmland services varies from −$37,541 to 124,000 per acre depending on the method of analysis and location of the farm. This research has strong implications for land-use planning, economic opportunities, and ecosystems infrastructure in peri-urban areas. PMID:25324593

  11. Benefits of Supervised Agricultural Experience Programs: A Synthesis of Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, David L.; Dyer, James E.

    1997-01-01

    A review of literature from 1964 to 1993 identified the benefits of supervised agricultural experience (SAE) programs, including agriculture knowledge and positive work attitudes. Classroom, SAE, and Future Farmers of America complemented each other. The research base is state specific and fragmented and lacks cohesiveness. (SK)

  12. The benefits of improved technologies in agricultural aviation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lietzke, K.; Abram, P.; Braen, C.; Givens, S.; Hazelrigg, G. A., Jr.; Fish, R.; Clyne, F.; Sand, F.

    1977-01-01

    The results are present for a study of the economic benefits attributed to a variety of potential technological improvements in agricultural aviation. Part 1 gives a general description of the ag-air industry and discusses the information used in the data base to estimate the potential benefits from technological improvements. Part 2 presents the benefit estimates and provides a quantitative basis for the estimates in each area study. Part 3 is a bibliography of references relating to this study.

  13. Environmental benefits vs. costs of geologic mapping

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bhagwat, S.B.; Berg, R.C.

    1992-01-01

    Boone and Winnebago Counties, Illinois, U.S.A., were selected for this study, required by the Illinois State Senate, because mapping and environmental interpretations were completed there in 1981. Costs of geologic mapping in these counties in 1990 dollars were $290,000. Two estimates of costs of statewide mapping were made, one extrapolated from Boone and Winnebago Counties ($21 million), the other estimated on the basis of differences between the Boone/Winnebago program and proposed mapping program for the State of Illinois ($55 million). Benefits of geologic information come in the form of future avoided costs for environmental cleanup. Only the quantifiable data, available from a few sites, were included. Data collection, based on 55 personal interviews in Boone and Winnebago Counties, were grouped into four cumulative categories with increasing variability. Geologic maps alone cannot account for all avoided costs of future cleanup. Therefore, estimated benefits were reduced by 50, 75, and 90 percent in three scenarios. To account for delays in proper utilization of knowledge gained from a mapping program, a 10-yr delay in benefit realization was assumed. All benefits were converted to 1990 dollars. In benefit category 4, benefit-cost ratios for Boone/Winnebago Counties ranged between 5 and 55. Statewide projection of benefits was based on county areas and an aquifer contamination potential score for each county. Statewide benefit-cost ratio in benefit category 4 ranged from 1.2 to 14 ($21 million mapping costs) and from 0.5 to 5.4 ($55 million mapping costs). ?? 1992 Springer-Verlag New York Inc.

  14. Environmental benefits of underground coal gasification.

    PubMed

    Liu, Shu-qin; Liu, Jun-hua; Yu, Li

    2002-04-01

    Environmental benefits of underground coal gasification are evaluated. The results showed that through underground coal gasification, gangue discharge is eliminated, sulfur emission is reduced, and the amount of ash, mercury, and tar discharge are decreased. Moreover, effect of underground gasification on underground water is analyzed and CO2 disposal method is put forward. PMID:12046301

  15. Environmental behavior and analysis of agricultural sulfur.

    PubMed

    Griffith, Corey M; Woodrow, James E; Seiber, James N

    2015-11-01

    Sulfur has been widely used for centuries as a staple for pest and disease management in agriculture. Presently, it is the largest-volume pesticide in use worldwide. This review describes the sources and recovery methods for sulfur, its allotropic forms and properties and its agricultural uses, including development and potential advantages of nanosulfur as a fungicide. Chemical and microbial reactivity, interactions in soil and water and analytical methods for determination in environmental samples and foodstuffs, including inexpensive analytical methods for sulfur residues in wine, beer and other food/beverage substrates, will be reviewed. The toxicology of sulfur towards humans and agriculturally important fungi is included, with some restrictions on use to promote safety. The review concludes with areas for which more research is warranted. PMID:26108794

  16. How sustainable agriculture can address the environmental and human health harms of industrial agriculture.

    PubMed Central

    Horrigan, Leo; Lawrence, Robert S; Walker, Polly

    2002-01-01

    The industrial agriculture system consumes fossil fuel, water, and topsoil at unsustainable rates. It contributes to numerous forms of environmental degradation, including air and water pollution, soil depletion, diminishing biodiversity, and fish die-offs. Meat production contributes disproportionately to these problems, in part because feeding grain to livestock to produce meat--instead of feeding it directly to humans--involves a large energy loss, making animal agriculture more resource intensive than other forms of food production. The proliferation of factory-style animal agriculture creates environmental and public health concerns, including pollution from the high concentration of animal wastes and the extensive use of antibiotics, which may compromise their effectiveness in medical use. At the consumption end, animal fat is implicated in many of the chronic degenerative diseases that afflict industrial and newly industrializing societies, particularly cardiovascular disease and some cancers. In terms of human health, both affluent and poor countries could benefit from policies that more equitably distribute high-protein foods. The pesticides used heavily in industrial agriculture are associated with elevated cancer risks for workers and consumers and are coming under greater scrutiny for their links to endocrine disruption and reproductive dysfunction. In this article we outline the environmental and human health problems associated with current food production practices and discuss how these systems could be made more sustainable. PMID:12003747

  17. How sustainable agriculture can address the environmental and human health harms of industrial agriculture.

    PubMed

    Horrigan, Leo; Lawrence, Robert S; Walker, Polly

    2002-05-01

    The industrial agriculture system consumes fossil fuel, water, and topsoil at unsustainable rates. It contributes to numerous forms of environmental degradation, including air and water pollution, soil depletion, diminishing biodiversity, and fish die-offs. Meat production contributes disproportionately to these problems, in part because feeding grain to livestock to produce meat--instead of feeding it directly to humans--involves a large energy loss, making animal agriculture more resource intensive than other forms of food production. The proliferation of factory-style animal agriculture creates environmental and public health concerns, including pollution from the high concentration of animal wastes and the extensive use of antibiotics, which may compromise their effectiveness in medical use. At the consumption end, animal fat is implicated in many of the chronic degenerative diseases that afflict industrial and newly industrializing societies, particularly cardiovascular disease and some cancers. In terms of human health, both affluent and poor countries could benefit from policies that more equitably distribute high-protein foods. The pesticides used heavily in industrial agriculture are associated with elevated cancer risks for workers and consumers and are coming under greater scrutiny for their links to endocrine disruption and reproductive dysfunction. In this article we outline the environmental and human health problems associated with current food production practices and discuss how these systems could be made more sustainable. PMID:12003747

  18. The limitations of environmental management systems in Australian agriculture.

    PubMed

    Cary, John; Roberts, Anna

    2011-03-01

    The efficacy of government-supported programs to encourage improved management of land and water systems associated with agricultural land in Australia has been mixed. The broad approach of Australian governments is reviewed briefly. Evidence is presented from case assessments of a program to promote adoption of environmental management systems (EMSs) to improve environmental outcomes from agricultural practices. EMSs are systems implemented to manage the environmental impacts and ameliorate environmental risk associated with business activity. Data are presented on reported EMS activity and experience of four selected groups of farmers in Victoria, south-eastern Australia, representing broad-acre cropping, beef and dairy farming. The pro-environmental behaviours of farmers were mediated through voluntary adoption of government and industry sponsored EMSs, often with financial incentives and other support. Findings from the study were that adoption of EMS practices with sufficient public benefits is unlikely to occur at sufficient scale for significant environmental impact. Farmers more readily adopted practices which were financially beneficial than those which had a positive environmental impact. Although the focus on voluntary market-based instrument (MBI) type programs is popular in western countries, enforcing regulation is an important, but usually politically unpopular, component of land use policy. The comparative advantage of EMSs differed for the industries studied, but overall there were insufficient market drivers for widespread EMS adoption in Australia. Environmental outcomes could be more effectively achieved by directly funding land management practices which have highest public net benefits. Having a clear and unambiguous management objective for a particular land management policy is more likely to achieve outcomes than having multiple objectives as occurs in a number of international programs currently. PMID:21084146

  19. Climate change mitigation for agriculture: water quality benefits and costs.

    PubMed

    Wilcock, Robert; Elliott, Sandy; Hudson, Neale; Parkyn, Stephanie; Quinn, John

    2008-01-01

    New Zealand is unique in that half of its national greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory derives from agriculture--predominantly as methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O), in a 2:1 ratio. The remaining GHG emissions predominantly comprise carbon dioxide (CO2) deriving from energy and industry sources. Proposed strategies to mitigate emissions of CH4 and N2O from pastoral agriculture in New Zealand are: (1) utilising extensive and riparian afforestation of pasture to achieve CO2 uptake (carbon sequestration); (2) management of nitrogen through budgeting and/or the use of nitrification inhibitors, and minimizing soil anoxia to reduce N2O emissions; and (3) utilisation of alternative waste treatment technologies to minimise emissions of CH4. These mitigation measures have associated co-benefits and co-costs (disadvantages) for rivers, streams and lakes because they affect land use, runoff loads, and receiving water and habitat quality. Extensive afforestation results in lower specific yields (exports) of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), suspended sediment (SS) and faecal matter and also has benefits for stream habitat quality by improving stream temperature, dissolved oxygen and pH regimes through greater shading, and the supply of woody debris and terrestrial food resources. Riparian afforestation does not achieve the same reductions in exports as extensive afforestation but can achieve reductions in concentrations of N, P, SS and faecal organisms. Extensive afforestation of pasture leads to reduced water yields and stream flows. Both afforestation measures produce intermittent disturbances to waterways during forestry operations (logging and thinning), resulting in sediment release from channel re-stabilisation and localised flooding, including formation of debris dams at culverts. Soil and fertiliser management benefits aquatic ecosystems by reducing N exports but the use of nitrification inhibitors, viz. dicyandiamide (DCD), to achieve this may under some circumstances

  20. Environmental audits -- Defining measurable value and benefits

    SciTech Connect

    Murphy, P.

    1998-07-01

    It is well accepted that historically traditional find and fix environmental audits are at best, short-term solutions. Such reactive thinking does not effectively identify the cause(s), are often short-lived and when facilities are re-evaluated, tend to frustrate any serious environmental stewardship program. More proactive thinking embraces the identifying and aggressive follow-up toward closure of causes. In any organization where audits are a part of proactive environmental company policies, even the latter progressive approach may not be a high enough plateau. Progressive audit programs include also, the essential ingredient to evaluate program strengths, avoiding the disastrous perceptions that audit is an evaluation of job performances. Establishment of baseline trust emphasizing the positive as well as deficiencies reinforces cooperation and builds winning relationships. Assurances of the sustainability of compliance through employee efforts though, cannot be guaranteed no matter what the regulation or how strong the company policy. Guarantees are few, but a more assured reinforcement of sustained buy-in can be through the identification and communication of audit value and benefits. Value and benefits are often thought of in terms of helping facilities achieve and maintain compliance while avoiding notices of violation and fines. While these among other objectives are the foundation reasons for assessing, a deeper, big picture analysis of employee effort and measurable value is required. Skillful audit teams use their perspective to identify opportunities and take on non-traditional roles to assist facilities transcend corrective action toward and maintenance of compliance. A measurable value and benefits driven approach in association with compliance objectives, enhanced by strong communication, reinforces the very foundation of trust and stewardship within the organization.

  1. 7 CFR 3201.8 - Determining life cycle costs, environmental and health benefits, and performance.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 15 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Determining life cycle costs, environmental and... FOR DESIGNATING BIOBASED PRODUCTS FOR FEDERAL PROCUREMENT General § 3201.8 Determining life cycle costs, environmental and health benefits, and performance. (a) Providing information on life cycle...

  2. 7 CFR 3201.8 - Determining life cycle costs, environmental and health benefits, and performance.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 15 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Determining life cycle costs, environmental and... FOR DESIGNATING BIOBASED PRODUCTS FOR FEDERAL PROCUREMENT General § 3201.8 Determining life cycle costs, environmental and health benefits, and performance. (a) Providing information on life cycle...

  3. 7 CFR 3201.8 - Determining life cycle costs, environmental and health benefits, and performance.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 15 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Determining life cycle costs, environmental and... FOR DESIGNATING BIOBASED PRODUCTS FOR FEDERAL PROCUREMENT General § 3201.8 Determining life cycle costs, environmental and health benefits, and performance. (a) Providing information on life cycle...

  4. Children's environmental health in agricultural settings.

    PubMed

    Karr, Catherine

    2012-01-01

    Children residing in rural settings may encounter environmental hazards derived from agricultural production activities. Health consequences of organic dusts, farm chemicals including pesticides, machinery noise, excess sun exposure, and zoonotic infectious agents have been clearly described among farm-working adults. The author reviews the related evidence base on child health with a life-stage perspective on their differential exposure and vulnerabilities. Methemoglobinemia among infants consuming nitrate-contaminated well water, neurodevelopmental health impacts associated with early life exposure to organophosphate pesticides, and diarrheal disease due to zoonotic infectious agents are well-described pediatric concerns. There is suggestive but more limited evidence for respiratory health consequences from air contaminants associated with confined animal feeding operations and hearing deficits for children exposed to machinery-related noise. Many contaminants of concern for children in these environments remain largely understudied-diesel exhaust, biomass burning, solvents, veterinary antibiotics, and silica-containing particulate matter. Overall, the state of knowledge and programmatic activities on agriculturally derived environmental contaminants and child health is immature and much less complete than for working adults. This overview provides a context for research, policy, and programmatic needs. PMID:22490026

  5. Plastic mulching in agriculture. Trading short-term agronomic benefits for long-term soil degradation?

    PubMed

    Steinmetz, Zacharias; Wollmann, Claudia; Schaefer, Miriam; Buchmann, Christian; David, Jan; Tröger, Josephine; Muñoz, Katherine; Frör, Oliver; Schaumann, Gabriele Ellen

    2016-04-15

    Plastic mulching has become a globally applied agricultural practice for its instant economic benefits such as higher yields, earlier harvests, improved fruit quality and increased water-use efficiency. However, knowledge of the sustainability of plastic mulching remains vague in terms of both an environmental and agronomic perspective. This review critically discusses the current understanding of the environmental impact of plastic mulch use by linking knowledge of agricultural benefits and research on the life cycle of plastic mulches with direct and indirect implications for long-term soil quality and ecosystem services. Adverse effects may arise from plastic additives, enhanced pesticide runoff and plastic residues likely to fragment into microplastics but remaining chemically intact and accumulating in soil where they can successively sorb agrochemicals. The quantification of microplastics in soil remains challenging due to the lack of appropriate analytical techniques. The cost and effort of recovering and recycling used mulching films may offset the aforementioned benefits in the long term. However, comparative and long-term agronomic assessments have not yet been conducted. Furthermore, plastic mulches have the potential to alter soil quality by shifting the edaphic biocoenosis (e.g. towards mycotoxigenic fungi), accelerate C/N metabolism eventually depleting soil organic matter stocks, increase soil water repellency and favour the release of greenhouse gases. A substantial process understanding of the interactions between the soil microclimate, water supply and biological activity under plastic mulches is still lacking but required to estimate potential risks for long-term soil quality. Currently, farmers mostly base their decision to apply plastic mulches rather on expected short-term benefits than on the consideration of long-term consequences. Future interdisciplinary research should therefore gain a deeper understanding of the incentives for farmers

  6. Viewpoint. Community-Supported Agriculture: Opportunities for Environmental Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Donahue, Timothy P.

    1994-01-01

    Describes the Community Farm of Ann Arbor, Michigan, in the context of critical social, economic, and environmental issues related to agriculture and the rural environment and the emerging movement for community-supported agriculture (CSA) in the United States. Discusses how CSA works, biodynamic agriculture, and opportunities for environmental…

  7. Benefits for agriculture and the environment from urban waste.

    PubMed

    Sortino, Orazio; Montoneri, Enzo; Patanè, Cristina; Rosato, Roberta; Tabasso, Silvia; Ginepro, Marco

    2014-07-15

    Soluble bio-based substances (SBO) that have been isolated from urban biowaste have recently been reported to enhance plant leaf chlorophyll content and growth. The same SBO have also been shown to enhance the photochemical degradation of organic pollutants in industrial effluent. These findings suggest that SBO may promote either C fixation or mineralization, according to operating conditions. The present work aims to investigate SBO performance, as a function of source material. Thus, three materials have been sampled from a municipal waste treatment plant: (i) the digestate of the anaerobic fermentation of a humid organic fraction, (ii) a whole vegetable compost made from gardening residues and (iii) compost made from a mixture of digestate, gardening residues and sewage sludge. These materials were hydrolyzed at pH13 and 60°C to yield SBO that display different chemical compositions. These products were applied to soil at 30, 145 and 500 kg ha(-1) doses for tomato cultivation. Soil and plant leaf chemical composition, plant growth, leaf chlorophyll content and CO2 exchange rate as well as fruit quality and production rate were measured. Although it did not affect the soil's chemical composition, SBO were found to significantly increase plant photosynthetic activity, growth and productivity up to the maximum value achieved at 145 kg ha(-1). The effects were analyzed as a function of SBO chemical composition and applied dose. The results of this work, compared with those of previous works, indicate that urban biowaste, if properly exploited, may furnish conjugate economic and environmental benefits, within a friendly sustainable ecosystem. PMID:24797739

  8. The Benefits of Improving Indoor Environmental Quality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lamping, Jerry

    2012-01-01

    As school funding levels nationwide continue to plummet amid public demands for increased student performance, an expanding body of research in the field of indoor environmental quality (IEQ) is providing greater statistical validity about the relationship between environmental conditions in school facilities and student achievement. Since the…

  9. Valuing the Environmental Benefits of Urban WaterConservation

    SciTech Connect

    Coughlin, Katie M.; Bolduc, Chris A.; Chan, Peter T.; Dunham-Whitehead, C.; Van Buskirk, R.D.

    2007-05-01

    This report documents a project undertaken for theCalifornia Urban Water Conservation Council (the Council) to create a newmethod of accounting for the diverse environmental benefits of raw watersavings. The environmental benefits (EB) model was designed to providewater utilities with a practical tool that they can use to assign amonetary value to the benefits that may accrue from implementing any ofthe Council-recommended Best Management Practices. The model treats onlyenvironmental services associated directly with water, and is intended tocover miscellaneous impacts that are not currently accounted for in anyother cost-benefit analysis.

  10. Assessing multiregion avian benefits from strategically targeted agricultural buffers.

    PubMed

    Evans, Kristine O; Burger, L Wes; Riffell, Sam; Smith, Mark D

    2014-08-01

    Mounting evidence of wildlife population gains from targeted conservation practices has prompted the need to develop and evaluate practices that are integrated into production agriculture systems and targeted toward specific habitat objectives. However, effectiveness of targeted conservation actions across broader landscapes is poorly understood. We evaluated multiregion, multispecies avian densities on row-crop fields with native grass field margins (i.e., buffers) as part of the first U.S. agricultural conservation practice designed to support habitat and population recovery objectives of a national wildlife conservation initiative. We coordinated breeding season point transect surveys for 6 grassland bird species on 1151 row-crop fields with and without native grass buffers (9-37 m) in 14 U.S. states (10 ecoregions) from 2006 to 2011. In most regions, breeding season densities of 5 of 6 targeted bird species were greater in the 500-m surrounding survey points centered on fields with native grass buffers than in landscapes without buffers. Relative effect sizes were greatest for Northern Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus), Dickcissel (Spiza americana), and Field Sparrow (Spizella pusilla) in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley and Eastern Tallgrass Prairie regions. Other species (e.g., Eastern Meadowlark [Sturnella magna], Grasshopper Sparrow [Ammodramus savannarum]) exhibited inconsistent relative effect sizes. Bird densities on fields with and without buffers were greatest in the Central Mixed-grass Prairie region. Our results suggest that strategic use of conservation buffers in regions with the greatest potential for relative density increases in target species will elicit greater range-wide population response than diffuse, uninformed, and broadly distributed implementation of buffers. We recommend integrating multiple conservation practices in broader agricultural landscapes to maximize conservation effectiveness for a larger suite of species. PMID:24779636

  11. Teaching Materials for Environmental Related Courses in Agriculture Occupations Programs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bohning, Kermit B.; Stitt, Thomas R.

    The lesson plans were designed to provide the practicing applied biological and agricultural occupations teacher with a series of units setting down a basic foundation in Environmental Education. Nine lesson plans cover (1) ecosystems and agriculture, (2) biotic communities and food chains, (3) energy and nutrient flow, (4) land use and supply,…

  12. Motivational Postures and Compliance with Environmental Law in Australian Agriculture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartel, Robyn; Barclay, Elaine

    2011-01-01

    Motivational posture theory is applied and extended to the context of Australian agriculture and environmental regulation. Regulatory failure in this area has been observed but little was known of the compliance attitudes and behaviours of farmers prior to this study. Agriculture covers over 60% of Australia's land surface so this information is…

  13. Using Natural Settings for Environmental Education: Perceived Benefits and Barriers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simmons, Deborah

    1998-01-01

    Teachers judged four types of outdoor settings for potential benefits and barriers to their use in environmental education. Factor analysis or responses showed six benefit and barrier factors: (1) appropriateness of teaching setting; (2) teacher confidence; (3) worries; (4) need for training; (5) hazards; and (6) difficulty of teaching…

  14. Hands-On Activities and Challenge Tests in Agricultural and Environmental Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poudel, D. D.; Vincent, L. M.; Anzalone, C.; Huner, J.; Wollard, D.; Clement, T.; DeRamus, A.; Blakewood, G.

    2005-01-01

    Many agricultural and environmental problems are interrelated and overlapping. Several agencies, including nonprofit organizations, have developed programs to educate schoolchildren about agricultural and environmental issues; however, programs that integrate both agricultural and environmental learning, especially among middle and high school…

  15. Tracking environmental dynamics and agricultural intensification in southern Mali

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tappan, G.; McGahuey, M.

    2007-01-01

    The Office de la Haute Valle??e du Fleuve Niger (OHVN) zone in southern Mali is a small but important agricultural production region. Against a background of environmental degradation including decades of declining rainfall, soil erosion, and human pressure on forest resources, numerous farming communities stand out through the use of improved soil and water management practices that have improved agricultural and environmental conditions. Field surveys conducted in 1998-2001 indicated that environmental and agricultural conditions have improved in the past decade. In an effort to better quantify environmental trends, we conducted a study using medium- and high-resolution remotely sensed images from 1965 to 2001 in order to analyze land use and land cover trends in 21 village territories. The trends show clear indications of agricultural intensification and diversification among villages that have received assistance from the OHVN agricultural development agency. Some communities have improved environmental conditions by protecting their forest resources through community management actions. Four decades of remotely sensed images played a practical role in tracking and quantifying environmental and agricultural conditions over time.

  16. Atmospheric deposition of nitrogen: Potential benefits to agricultural production

    SciTech Connect

    Coveney, E.A.; Medeiros, W.H.; Moskowitz, P.D.

    1986-11-01

    Effects of indirect fertilization on agricultural lands by atmospheric deposition are examined for the four most valuable crops in the US: corn, soybean, wheat, and pasture grasses. A literature search was conducted to find suitable dose-response functions for the effects of fertilization on yield of each crop. Predicted yield changes were computed from the deposition of nitrogen to the soil in addition to nitrogen applied in accordance with current agronomic practices using these dose-response functions. Low to high nitrogen inputs from atmospheric deposition (1 to 7 kg/ha) are expected to increase the average yield of corn by 0.2 to 1.1%, soybean by 0.1 to 0.7%, wheat by 0.1 to 0.4%, and pasture grasses by 1.6 to 14%. Pasture land is predicted to receive the greatest impact because it is usually unfertilized.

  17. Impacts of antibiotic use in agriculture: what are the benefits and risks?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Antibiotic drugs provide clear benefits for food animal health and welfare, while simultaneously providing clear risks due to enrichment of resistant microorganisms. There is no consensus, however, on how to evaluate benefits and risks of antibiotic use in agriculture, or the impact on public health...

  18. Dual discounting in cost-benefit analysis for environmental impacts

    SciTech Connect

    Kula, Erhun; Evans, David

    2011-04-15

    Discounting has been a long-established intertemporal efficiency tool in cost-benefit analysis which focuses on project selection at communal level with a view to maximising the social welfare. However, with the relentless growth in environmental stress that, in good parts, stems from investment projects the established criterion in discounting appears to be inadequate especially when environmental issues are taken into consideration. This paper looks at how dual focus on efficiency and sustainability can be achieved by using dual discounting, i.e. discounting environmental benefits separately and differently from other costs and benefits and applies this alternative criterion to an afforestation scheme in the United Kingdom which contains carbon sequestration in addition to timber benefits.

  19. Quantification of biophysical adaptation benefits from Climate-Smart Agriculture using a Bayesian Belief Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Nijs, Patrick J.; Berry, Nicholas J.; Wells, Geoff J.; Reay, Dave S.

    2014-10-01

    The need for smallholder farmers to adapt their practices to a changing climate is well recognised, particularly in Africa. The cost of adapting to climate change in Africa is estimated to be $20 to $30 billion per year, but the total amount pledged to finance adaptation falls significantly short of this requirement. The difficulty of assessing and monitoring when adaptation is achieved is one of the key barriers to the disbursement of performance-based adaptation finance. To demonstrate the potential of Bayesian Belief Networks for describing the impacts of specific activities on climate change resilience, we developed a simple model that incorporates climate projections, local environmental data, information from peer-reviewed literature and expert opinion to account for the adaptation benefits derived from Climate-Smart Agriculture activities in Malawi. This novel approach allows assessment of vulnerability to climate change under different land use activities and can be used to identify appropriate adaptation strategies and to quantify biophysical adaptation benefits from activities that are implemented. We suggest that multiple-indicator Bayesian Belief Network approaches can provide insights into adaptation planning for a wide range of applications and, if further explored, could be part of a set of important catalysts for the expansion of adaptation finance.

  20. Environmental Co-Benefit Opportunities of Solar Energy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernandez, R. R.; Armstrong, A.; Burney, J. A.; Easter, S. B.; Hoffacker, M. K.; Moore, K. A.

    2015-12-01

    Solar energy reduces greenhouse gas emissions by an order of magnitude when substituted for fossil fuels. Nonetheless, the strategic deployment of solar energy—from single, rooftop modules to utility-scale solar energy power plants—can confer additional environmental co-benefits beyond its immediate use as a low carbon energy source. In this study, we identify a diverse portfolio of environmental co-benefit opportunities of solar energy technologies resulting from synergistic innovations in land, food, energy, and water systems. For each opportunity, we provide a demonstrative, quantitative framework for environmental co-benefit valuation—including, equations, models, or case studies for estimating carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-eq) and cost savings ($US) averted by environmental co-benefit opportunities of solar energy—and imminent research questions to improve certainty of valuations. As land-energy-food-water nexus issues are increasingly exigent in 21st century, we show that environmental co-benefit opportunities of solar energy are feasible in numerous environments and at a wide range of spatial scales thereby able to contribute to local and regional environmental goals and for the mitigation of climate change.

  1. Ecological risk assessment benefits environmental management

    SciTech Connect

    Fairbrother, A.; Kapustka, L.A.; Williams, B.A.; Glicken, J.

    1994-12-31

    The ecological risk assessment process in its ideal form is an unbiased approach for assessing the probability of harm to the environment as a consequence of a given action. This information can then be combined with other societal values and biases in the management of such risks. However, as the process currently is understood, decision makers often are accused of manipulating information in order to generate decisions or achieve buy in from the public in support of a particular political agenda. A clear understanding of the nature of the risk management process can help define areas where information should be free from social or personal bias, and areas where values and judgments are critical. The authors do not propose to discuss the individual`s decision-making process, but rather to address the social process of risk communication and environmentally-related decision-making, identifying which parts of that process require bias-free, scientifically generated information about the consequences of various actions and which parts need an understanding of the social values which underlie the informed choices among those possible actions.

  2. Estimating environmental benefits of energy programs

    SciTech Connect

    Baechler, M.C.; Schrock, D.W.

    1995-07-01

    Three national reporting programs that either collect or report information on energy savings and the associated emissions reductions from DSM programs are the Conservation Verification Protocols (CVP), the Greenhouse Gas Voluntary Reporting Program (VRP), and the Green Lights Program. The CVP were enacted to report the atmospheric emissions reductions of S0{sub 2} and N0{sub 2}. The VRP was mandated in the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPAct) Section 1605(b) to report CO{sub 2}, emissions reductions. Green Lights is a program designed to reduce emissions by encouraging energy-efficient lighting. In this paper we concentrate on how the verification methods, default emission factors and reporting mechanisms affect the accuracy of the reported energy and emissions savings. Additionally, we focus on the dynamic nature of predicted emissions reductions to gauge the accuracy of predictions over time. If conservation programs are designed to affect existing powerplants, if no load growth is anticipated, and if existing plants will not require replacement, a simple static analysis based on an existing resource mix may be acceptable. This approach is enhanced by defining base case, intermediate, and peak resources. However, if today`s decisions will affect tomorrow`s resource decisions, or if the estimates will be used to establish important milestones (such as emission credits), it is prudent to conduct an analysis that captures most incumbent uncertainties. These uncertainties include future resource decisions and the regional character of energy resources, which may not be captured by national estimates and simple extrapolation techniques. While some estimation methods, such as use of default emission factors, produce reasonable national average numbers, the estimates may not be applicable to specific regions. The environmental and economic value of programs may be misstated.

  3. Multiple benefits arising from novel management of agricultural ditches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jonczyk, Jennine; Barber, Nick; Quinn, Paul

    2016-04-01

    The opportunity to modify the function and dynamics of farm ditches is very high. There are many kilometres of ditch that could offer multiple benefits to pollution control and lowering flood risk. However, there is first a perception problem to overcome, in that most farmers wish to remove water from the land quickly and are irritated by the accumulation of sediment. Hence, we have built a series of demonstration ditches where the new operation of the ditch can be shown to trap substantial amounts of sediment and nutrients and also not cause any local flooding or water logging problems. The ditch itself is radically changed in shape and is widened as much as possible and usually has a flat bottom. The ditch will also contain a series of leaky barriers that will retain flow during storm events. In very large events an overflow structure is required. These features do have to be engineered to a good level of safety to avoid failure. Sediment must also be recovered from the ditch frequently (at least annually) which again could be a role fulfilled by the farmer. We will show a number of example ditch designs and the data captured in experiments. One feature typically captures 50% of the suspended sediment, 30% of total phosphorus and 20% of the nitrate in a single storm.

  4. The benefits of improved technologies in agricultural aviation. [economic impact and aircraft configurations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1978-01-01

    The economic benefits attributable to a variety of potential technological improvements in agricultural aviation are discussed. Topics covered include: the ag-air industry, the data base used to estimate the potential benefits and a summary of the potential benefits from technological improvements; ag-air activities in the United States; foreign ag-air activities; major ag-air aircraft is use and manufacturers' sales and distribution networks; and estimates of the benefits to the United States of proposed technological improvements to the aircraft and dispersal equipment. A bibliography of references is appended.

  5. An environmental impact assessment system for agricultural R and D

    SciTech Connect

    Rodrigues, Geraldo Stachetti; Campanhola, Clayton; Kitamura, Paulo Choji

    2003-03-01

    A strategic planning process has been implemented at the Brazilian Agricultural Research Agency (Embrapa) to introduce sustainable agriculture concepts in all steps of Research and Development (R and D). An essential part of the devised mission statement called for the impact assessment of all technology innovation resulting from R and D, under field conditions (ex-post). However, methods for impact assessment of technology innovations at the farmstead level appropriate for the institutional context were lacking. The environmental impact assessment (EIA) system (AMBITEC-AGRO) developed to attend that demand is composed by a set of weighing matrices constructed in an electronic spreadsheet. Impact indicators are evaluated in the field in an interview/survey, and weighed according to their spatial scale and importance toward effecting environmental impacts. The results of these weighing procedures are expressed graphically in the assessment spreadsheets. Finally, the indicator evaluations are composed into an Environmental Impact Index for the agricultural technology innovation.

  6. Food production, environmental protection, and health effects in Mexican agriculture.

    PubMed

    López de Alba, F

    1990-01-01

    In countries like Mexico, where the need to increase agricultural productivity to satisfy an ever-increasing population is great, attention to environmental problems is recent. However, current public concern has forced the administration to consider environmental protection as a key strategy in the development model. The purpose of this paper is to present the efforts being made by the country, the state of research, legislation, and regulations, and the level of participation by agrichemical producers in aiming to balance protection of the environment and development in the agricultural sector, including intensive use of mechanization and agrichemicals. PMID:2248254

  7. Environmental benefits of growing perennial legumes in cropping systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Alfalfa offers several environmental benefits to farmers and society. Reduced nitrate leaching due to slower water flow and excellent nitrate removal are valuable in farm fields and at remediation sites. Improved N supply to following crops reduces energy use, economic costs, and greenhouse gas emis...

  8. Environmental Benefits and Burdens of Phosphorus Recovery from Municipal Wastewater.

    PubMed

    Bradford-Hartke, Zenah; Lane, Joe; Lant, Paul; Leslie, Gregory

    2015-07-21

    The environmental benefits and burdens of phosphorus recovery in four centralized and two decentralized municipal wastewater systems were compared using life cycle assessment (LCA). In centralized systems, phosphorus recovered as struvite from the solids dewatering liquid resulted in an environmental benefit except for the terrestrial ecotoxicity and freshwater eutrophication impact categories, with power and chemical use offset by operational savings and avoided fertilizer production. Chemical-based phosphorus recovery, however, generally required more resources than were offset by avoided fertilizers, resulting in a net environmental burden. In decentralized systems, phosphorus recovery via urine source separation reduced the global warming and ozone depletion potentials but increased terrestrial ecotoxicity and salinization potentials due to application of untreated urine to land. Overall, mineral depletion and eutrophication are well-documented arguments for phosphorus recovery; however, phosphorus recovery does not necessarily present a net environmental benefit. While avoided fertilizer production does reduce potential impacts, phosphorus recovery does not necessarily offset the resources consumed in the process. LCA results indicate that selection of an appropriate phosphorus recovery method should consider both local conditions and other environmental impacts, including global warming, ozone depletion, toxicity, and salinization, in addition to eutrophication and mineral depletion impacts. PMID:26121005

  9. Rejuvenation of agriculture in India: Cost benefits in using EO products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jayaraman, V.; Parihar, J. S.; Srivastava, S. K.

    2008-07-01

    India is looking for rejuvenating its sagging agricultural production and productivity by integrating high technology space inputs for both irrigated and rainfed areas. The Earth Observations (EO) products today serve as major inputs to policy, planning and targeted interventions, contributing to building social capitals, natural resources assets and environmental gains on the long-term basis. The benefits are mostly indirect and often difficult to quantify in terms of money. The cost benefit analysis of EO products is therefore an involved exercise and not many examples exist globally. The present paper, taking into account major national as well as some local level agriprojects in India, highlights the criticality of EO products in terms of their short-term as well as long-term economic and social values. Three aspects viz., catalytic, timeliness and enabling have been analyzed to visualize the role of EO products in a holistic fashion. In the catalytic role, EO inputs have been found to play a role in the successful implementation of major natural resources development projects. The cost of EO inputs may be of less than 2-5% to the total cost of the development projects, but the nature of such inputs are critical and catalytic. For example, a major project on reclamation of around 0.6 Mha sodic soils in Indo-Gangetic Plans costs US89 million where EO products costs less than 2%; but demonstrates their catalytic roles in terms of identification, monitoring and evaluation and as inputs to mid-course corrections. The second aspect is timeliness in terms of opportunity cost. In India, Forecasting Agricultural Output Using Space-borne, Agro-meteorological and Land Observations (FASAL) project is carried out for in-season multiple crop production forecasting in support of strategic decision on trade, price and procurements. In the past, timely forecasts from FASAL have been found to be accurate and helpful for the country to plan many of its activities, including

  10. Environmentally Sound Small-Scale Agricultural Projects. Guidelines for Planning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mohonk Trust, New Paltz, NY.

    This publication is the first of a series of manuals that present environmental guidelines for planning and implementing ecologically sustainable projects. Attention is particularly directed to the agricultural situation and needs of developing nations. Subject areas discussed include: (1) users and uses (identifying the major purposes of the…

  11. Environmental Education, Sustainable Agriculture, and CGIAR: History and Future Prospects

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nelles, Wayne

    2011-01-01

    The Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) is a global network of 15 specialized centers employing around 2,000 international scientists and 6,000 national staff in over 100 countries. CGIAR educational approaches to environmental issues have varied amid conflicting perspectives. Inadequate policies, learning resources,…

  12. Environmental and Agricultural Sciences. Georgia Core Standards for Occupational Clusters.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Georgia Univ., Athens. Dept. of Occupational Studies.

    This document lists core standards and occupational knowledge amd skills that have been identified/validated by industry as necessary to all Georgia students in secondary-level environmental and agricultural sciences programs. First, foundation skills are grouped as follows: basic skills (reading, writing, arithmetic/mathematics, listening,…

  13. ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING MANUAL FOR SALINITY MANAGEMENT IN IRRIGATED AGRICULTURE

    EPA Science Inventory

    An Environmental Planning Manual for Salinity Management in Irrigated Agriculture has been prepared. The primary focus of this manual is a delineation of the combinations of technological and institutional solutions, the various levels of planning effort, use of existing data and...

  14. Critical Thinking for Natural Resource, Agricultural, and Environmental Ethics Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quinn, Courtney; Burbach, Mark E.; Matkin, Gina S.; Flores, Kevin

    2009-01-01

    Future decision makers in natural resource fields will be required to make judgments on issues that lack clear solutions and with information complicated by ethical challenges. Therefore, natural resource, environmental, and agricultural professionals must possess the ability to think critically about the consequences of policy, economic systems,…

  15. Introduction to biochar as an agricultural and environmental amendment

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This introductory chapter justifies and outlines biochar for current and potential agricultural and environmental applications. Biochar is fine-grained, recalcitrant charcoal made from heating vegetative biomass, bones, manure solids, and other plant-derived organic residues in an oxygen-free or oxy...

  16. Zoonosis emergence linked to agricultural intensification and environmental change

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Bryony A.; Grace, Delia; Kock, Richard; Alonso, Silvia; Rushton, Jonathan; Said, Mohammed Y.; McKeever, Declan; Mutua, Florence; Young, Jarrah; McDermott, John; Pfeiffer, Dirk Udo

    2013-01-01

    A systematic review was conducted by a multidisciplinary team to analyze qualitatively best available scientific evidence on the effect of agricultural intensification and environmental changes on the risk of zoonoses for which there are epidemiological interactions between wildlife and livestock. The study found several examples in which agricultural intensification and/or environmental change were associated with an increased risk of zoonotic disease emergence, driven by the impact of an expanding human population and changing human behavior on the environment. We conclude that the rate of future zoonotic disease emergence or reemergence will be closely linked to the evolution of the agriculture–environment nexus. However, available research inadequately addresses the complexity and interrelatedness of environmental, biological, economic, and social dimensions of zoonotic pathogen emergence, which significantly limits our ability to predict, prevent, and respond to zoonotic disease emergence. PMID:23671097

  17. Implementation of AN Agricultural Environmental Information System (aeis) for the Sanjiang Plain, Ne-China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Q.; Brocks, S.; Lenz-Wiedemann, V.; Miao, Y.; Jiang, R.; Chen, X.; Zhang, F.; Bareth, G.

    2012-07-01

    The Sino-German Project between the China Agricultural University and the University of Cologne, Germany, focuses on regional agro-ecosystem modelling. One major focus of the cooperation activity is the establishment of joint rice field experiment research in Jiansanjiang, located in the Sanjiang Plain (Heilongjiang Province, north-eastern part of China), to investigate the different agricultural practices and their impact on yield and environment. An additional task is to set-up an Agricultural Environmental Information System (AEIS) for the Sanjiang Plain (SJP), which covers more than 100 000 km2. Research groups from Geography (e.g. GIS & Remote Sensing) and Plant Nutrition (e.g. Precision Agriculture) are involved in the project. The major aim of the AEIS for the SJP is to provide information about (i) agriculture in the region, (ii) the impact of agricultural practices on the environment, and (iii) simulation scenarios for sustainable strategies. Consequently, the AEIS for the SJP provides information for decision support and therefore could be regarded as a Spatial Decision Support System (SDSS), too. The investigation of agricultural and environmental issues has a spatial context, which requires the management, handling, and analysis of spatial data. The use of GIS enables the capture, storage, analysis and presentation of spatial data. Therefore, GIS is the major tool for the set-up of the AEIS for the SJP. This contribution presents the results of linking agricultural statistics with GIS to provide information about agriculture in the SJP and discusses the benefits of this method as well as the integration of methods to produce new data.

  18. From the Cover: Environmental, economic, and energetic costs and benefits of biodiesel and ethanol biofuels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, Jason; Nelson, Erik; Tilman, David; Polasky, Stephen; Tiffany, Douglas

    2006-07-01

    Negative environmental consequences of fossil fuels and concerns about petroleum supplies have spurred the search for renewable transportation biofuels. To be a viable alternative, a biofuel should provide a net energy gain, have environmental benefits, be economically competitive, and be producible in large quantities without reducing food supplies. We use these criteria to evaluate, through life-cycle accounting, ethanol from corn grain and biodiesel from soybeans. Ethanol yields 25% more energy than the energy invested in its production, whereas biodiesel yields 93% more. Compared with ethanol, biodiesel releases just 1.0%, 8.3%, and 13% of the agricultural nitrogen, phosphorus, and pesticide pollutants, respectively, per net energy gain. Relative to the fossil fuels they displace, greenhouse gas emissions are reduced 12% by the production and combustion of ethanol and 41% by biodiesel. Biodiesel also releases less air pollutants per net energy gain than ethanol. These advantages of biodiesel over ethanol come from lower agricultural inputs and more efficient conversion of feedstocks to fuel. Neither biofuel can replace much petroleum without impacting food supplies. Even dedicating all U.S. corn and soybean production to biofuels would meet only 12% of gasoline demand and 6% of diesel demand. Until recent increases in petroleum prices, high production costs made biofuels unprofitable without subsidies. Biodiesel provides sufficient environmental advantages to merit subsidy. Transportation biofuels such as synfuel hydrocarbons or cellulosic ethanol, if produced from low-input biomass grown on agriculturally marginal land or from waste biomass, could provide much greater supplies and environmental benefits than food-based biofuels. corn | soybean | life-cycle accounting | agriculture | fossil fuel

  19. Environmental, economic, and energetic costs and benefits of biodiesel and ethanol biofuels

    SciTech Connect

    Hill, J. |; Tilman, D.; Polasky, S.; Tiffany, D.

    2006-07-25

    Negative environmental consequences of fossil fuels and concerns about petroleum supplies have spurred the search for renewable transportation biofuels. To be a viable alternative, a biofuel should provide a net energy gain, have environmental benefits, be economically competitive, and be producible in large quantities without reducing food supplies. The authors use these criteria to evaluate, through life-cycle accounting, ethanol from corn grain and biodiesel from soybeans. Ethanol yields 25% more energy than the energy invested in its production, whereas biodiesel yields 93% more. Compared with ethanol, biodiesel releases just 1.0%, 8.3% and 13% of the agricultural nitrogen, phosphorus, and pesticide pollutants, respectively, per net energy gain. Relative to the fossil fuels they displace, greenhouse gas emissions are reduced 12% by the production and combustion of ethanol and 41% by biodiesel. Biodiesel also releases less air pollutants per net energy gain than ethanol. These advantages of biodiesel over ethanol come from lower agricultural inputs and more efficient conversion of feedstocks to fuel. Neither biofuel can replace much petroleum without impacting food supplies. Even dedicating all U.S. corn and soybean production to biofuels would meet only 12% of gasoline demand and 6% of diesel demand. Until recent increases in petroleum prices, high production costs made biofuels unprofitable without subsidies. Biodiesel provides sufficient environmental advantages to merit subsidy. Transportation biofuels such as synfuel hydrocarbons or cellulosic ethanol, if produced from low-input biomass, could provide much greater supplies and environmental benefits than food-based biofuels.

  20. Climate change impacts on US agriculture and forestry: benefits of global climate stabilization

    SciTech Connect

    Beach, Robert H.; Cai, Yongxia; Thomson, Allison M.; Zhang, Xuesong; Jones, Russ; McCarl, Bruce A.; Crimmins, Allison; Martinich, Jeremy; Cole, Jefferson; Ohrel, Sara; DeAngelo, B. J.; McFarland, Jim; Strzepek, K.; Boehlert, Brent

    2015-09-01

    Increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, higher temperatures, altered precipitation patterns, and other climate change impacts have already begun to affect US agriculture and forestry, with impacts expected to become more substantial in the future. There have been numerous studies of climate change impacts on agriculture or forestry, but relatively little research examining the long-term net impacts of a stabilization scenario relative to a case with unabated climate change. We provide an analysis of the potential benefits of global climate change mitigation for US agriculture and forestry through 2100, accounting for landowner decisions regarding land use, crop mix, and management practices. The analytic approach involves a combination of climate models, a crop process model (EPIC), a dynamic vegetation model used for forests (MC1), and an economic model of the US forestry and agricultural sector (FASOM-GHG). We find substantial impacts on productivity, commodity markets, and consumer and producer welfare for the stabilization scenario relative to unabated climate change, though the magnitude and direction of impacts vary across regions and commodities. Although there is variability in welfare impacts across climate simulations, we find positive net benefits from stabilization in all cases, with cumulative impacts ranging from $32.7 billion to $54.5 billion over the period 2015-2100. Our estimates contribute to the literature on potential benefits of GHG mitigation and can help inform policy decisions weighing alternative mitigation and adaptation actions.

  1. Climate change impacts on US agriculture and forestry: benefits of global climate stabilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beach, Robert H.; Cai, Yongxia; Thomson, Allison; Zhang, Xuesong; Jones, Russell; McCarl, Bruce A.; Crimmins, Allison; Martinich, Jeremy; Cole, Jefferson; Ohrel, Sara; DeAngelo, Benjamin; McFarland, James; Strzepek, Kenneth; Boehlert, Brent

    2015-09-01

    Increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, higher temperatures, altered precipitation patterns, and other climate change impacts have already begun to affect US agriculture and forestry, with impacts expected to become more substantial in the future. There have been numerous studies of climate change impacts on agriculture or forestry, but relatively little research examining the long-term net impacts of a stabilization scenario relative to a case with unabated climate change. We provide an analysis of the potential benefits of global climate change mitigation for US agriculture and forestry through 2100, accounting for landowner decisions regarding land use, crop mix, and management practices. The analytic approach involves a combination of climate models, a crop process model (EPIC), a dynamic vegetation model used for forests (MC1), and an economic model of the US forestry and agricultural sector (FASOM-GHG). We find substantial impacts on productivity, commodity markets, and consumer and producer welfare for the stabilization scenario relative to unabated climate change, though the magnitude and direction of impacts vary across regions and commodities. Although there is variability in welfare impacts across climate simulations, we find positive net benefits from stabilization in all cases, with cumulative impacts ranging from 32.7 billion to 54.5 billion over the period 2015-2100. Our estimates contribute to the literature on potential benefits of GHG mitigation and can help inform policy decisions weighing alternative mitigation and adaptation actions.

  2. Grassland-Cropping Rotations: An Avenue for Agricultural Diversification to Reconcile High Production with Environmental Quality.

    PubMed

    Lemaire, Gilles; Gastal, François; Franzluebbers, Alan; Chabbi, Abad

    2015-11-01

    A need to increase agricultural production across the world to ensure continued food security appears to be at odds with the urgency to reduce the negative environmental impacts of intensive agriculture. Around the world, intensification has been associated with massive simplification and uniformity at all levels of organization, i.e., field, farm, landscape, and region. Therefore, we postulate that negative environmental impacts of modern agriculture are due more to production simplification than to inherent characteristics of agricultural productivity. Thus by enhancing diversity within agricultural systems, it should be possible to reconcile high quantity and quality of food production with environmental quality. Intensification of livestock and cropping systems separately within different specialized regions inevitably leads to unacceptable environmental impacts because of the overly uniform land use system in intensive cereal areas and excessive N-P loads in intensive animal areas. The capacity of grassland ecosystems to couple C and N cycles through microbial-soil-plant interactions as a way for mitigating the environmental impacts of intensive arable cropping system was analyzed in different management options: grazing, cutting, and ley duration, in order to minimize trade-offs between production and the environment. We suggest that integrated crop-livestock systems are an appropriate strategy to enhance diversity. Sod-based rotations can temporally and spatially capture the benefits of leys for minimizing environmental impacts, while still maintaining periods and areas of intensive cropping. Long-term experimental results illustrate the potential of such systems to sequester C in soil and to reduce and control N emissions to the atmosphere and hydrosphere. PMID:26070897

  3. Grassland-Cropping Rotations: An Avenue for Agricultural Diversification to Reconcile High Production with Environmental Quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemaire, Gilles; Gastal, François; Franzluebbers, Alan; Chabbi, Abad

    2015-11-01

    A need to increase agricultural production across the world to ensure continued food security appears to be at odds with the urgency to reduce the negative environmental impacts of intensive agriculture. Around the world, intensification has been associated with massive simplification and uniformity at all levels of organization, i.e., field, farm, landscape, and region. Therefore, we postulate that negative environmental impacts of modern agriculture are due more to production simplification than to inherent characteristics of agricultural productivity. Thus by enhancing diversity within agricultural systems, it should be possible to reconcile high quantity and quality of food production with environmental quality. Intensification of livestock and cropping systems separately within different specialized regions inevitably leads to unacceptable environmental impacts because of the overly uniform land use system in intensive cereal areas and excessive N-P loads in intensive animal areas. The capacity of grassland ecosystems to couple C and N cycles through microbial-soil-plant interactions as a way for mitigating the environmental impacts of intensive arable cropping system was analyzed in different management options: grazing, cutting, and ley duration, in order to minimize trade-offs between production and the environment. We suggest that integrated crop-livestock systems are an appropriate strategy to enhance diversity. Sod-based rotations can temporally and spatially capture the benefits of leys for minimizing environmental impacts, while still maintaining periods and areas of intensive cropping. Long-term experimental results illustrate the potential of such systems to sequester C in soil and to reduce and control N emissions to the atmosphere and hydrosphere.

  4. Quantifying the multiple, environmental benefits of reintroducing the Eurasian Beaver

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brazier, Richard; Puttock, Alan; Graham, Hugh; Anderson, Karen; Cunliffe, Andrew; Elliott, Mark

    2016-04-01

    Beavers are ecological engineers with an ability to modify the structure and flow of fluvial systems and create complex wetland environments with dams, ponds and canals. Consequently, beaver activity has potential for river restoration, management and the provision of multiple environmental ecosystem services including biodiversity, flood risk mitigation, water quality and sustainable drinking water provision. With the current debate surrounding the reintroduction of beavers into the United Kingdom, it is critical to monitor the impact of beavers upon the environment. We have developed and implemented a monitoring strategy to quantify the impact of reintroducing the Eurasian Beaver on multiple environmental ecosystem services and river systems at a range of scales. First, the experimental design and preliminary results will be presented from the Mid-Devon Beaver Trial, where a family of beavers has been introduced to a 3 ha enclosure situated upon a first order tributary of the River Tamar. The site was instrumented to monitor the flow rate and quality of water entering and leaving the site. Additionally, the impacts of beavers upon riparian vegetation structure, water/carbon storage were investigated. Preliminary results indicate that beaver activity, particularly the building of ponds and dams, increases water storage within the landscape and moderates the river response to rainfall. Baseflow is enhanced during dry periods and storm flow is attenuated, potentially reducing the risk of flooding downstream. Initial analysis of water quality indicates that water entering the site (running off intensively managed grasslands upslope), has higher suspended sediment loads and nitrate levels, than that leaving the site, after moving through the series of beaver ponds. These results suggest beaver activity may also act as a means by which the negative impact of diffuse water pollution from agriculture can be mitigated thus providing cleaner water in rivers downstream

  5. Review of: Managing Agricultural Landscapes for Environmental Quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This volume is the proceedings of a workshop/conference that was held in Kansas City, Missouri, USA, 11-13 October 2006. The intent of the workshop was to extend the knowledge base concerning the environmental benefits of “Conservation on Cropland” to impacts beyond the edge of the field, focusing ...

  6. PRECISION AGRICULTURE MASTERS PROGRAM - EDUCATING MISSOURI CROP PRODUCERS ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF PRECISION AGRICULTURE MANAGEMENT THROUGH ON-FARM RESEARCH

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Precision Agriculture Masters (PAM) Program was initiated to enhance the transfer of technology related to precision agriculture to Missouri's crop producers. The PAM program consists of three parts: the precision agriculture knowledge network available through the Missouri Precision Agricultur...

  7. Trade in the US and Mexico helps reduce environmental costs of agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez-Melendez, Luz A.; Bennett, Elena M.

    2016-05-01

    Increasing international crop trade has enlarged global shares of cropland, water and fertilizers used to grow crops for export. Crop trade can reduce the environmental burden on importing countries, which benefit from embedded environmental resources in imported crops, and from avoided environmental impacts of production in their territory. International trade can also reduce the universal environmental impact of food production if crops are grown where they are produced in the most environmentally efficient way. We compared production efficiencies for the same crops in the US and Mexico to determine whether current crop trade between these two countries provides an overall benefit to the environment. Our economic and environmental accounting for the key traded crops from 2010 to 2014 shows that exports to Mexico are just 3% (∼16 thousand Gg) of the total production of these crops in the US, and exports to US represent roughly 0.13% (∼46 Gg) of Mexican total production of the same crops. Yields were higher in US than Mexico for all crops except wheat. Use of nitrogen fertilizer was higher in US than in Mexico for all crops except corn. Current trade reduces some, but not all, environmental costs of agriculture. A counterfactual trade scenario showed that an overall annual reduction in cultivated land (∼371 thousand ha), water use (∼923 million m3), fertilizer use (∼122 Gg; ∼68 Gg nitrogen) and pollution (∼681 tonnes of N2O emissions to the atmosphere and ∼511 tonnes of leached nitrogen) can be achieved by changing the composition of food products traded. In this case, corn, soybeans and rice should be grown in the US, while wheat, sorghum and barley should be grown in Mexico. Assigning greater economic weight to the environmental costs of agriculture might improve the balance of trade to be more universally beneficial, environmentally.

  8. Role of ecological farms in improving agricultural environmental problems

    SciTech Connect

    Huang Zhenguan; Shu, T.

    1983-01-01

    This article examines the concept of regarding the agricultural ecosystem as an entirety, integrating the energy conversion and material cycle between various biocoenosiums of plants, animals and microorganisms and that between organisms and nonorganisms which run through the entire ecosystem, and composing scientifically the environment-ecosystem for the purpose of gaining the maximum biotic yield and the best efficiency in protection of the agricultural environment. It is indicated that ''methane-fermentation'' of agricultural organisms is an important link in fully utilizing matter and energy and reducing environmental pollution, and this will partly solve the problem of fuel shortage in rural areas as well. There is a need to find models of ecological farms which suit the realities of China. Even though ecological farms are a new concept in the agricultural sciences, some forms of ecological farms have long existed in traditional agricultural production of China. For example, the peasants in some flatland areas of southern China scrape sod from the borderdikes to bed down domestic animals, the mud-bearing sod is mixed with the excrement of livestock, and after pilling and rotting, the decomposed manure is applied as organic fertilizer in farmlands. A diagram of the production structure of a fishpond is presented.

  9. Environmental Emissions Nonenergy Benefits Working Paper: ARRA Period

    SciTech Connect

    Carroll, David; Bausch, Daniel

    2015-03-01

    Weatherization reduces energy usage by low-income households, and thereby reduces the environmental impacts of the production and consumption of energy and reduces the social costs associated with those environmental impacts. The nonenergy benefits study conducted as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) evaluation focused on measuring the emissions reductions resulting from WAP program energy usage reductions and estimating the societal value of those emission reductions. While there are other environmental impacts associated with the WAP program, this study focused on emissions impacts because the 2010 National Research Council (NRC) report Hidden Costs of Energy: The Unpriced Consequences of Energy Production and Use recommended that Congress focus on emissions costs because they have the highest documented social impact costs

  10. Green roof valuation: a probabilistic economic analysis of environmental benefits.

    PubMed

    Clark, Corrie; Adriaens, Peter; Talbot, F Brian

    2008-03-15

    Green (vegetated) roofs have gained global acceptance as a technologythat has the potential to help mitigate the multifaceted, complex environmental problems of urban centers. While policies that encourage green roofs exist atthe local and regional level, installation costs remain at a premium and deter investment in this technology. The objective of this paper is to quantitatively integrate the range of stormwater, energy, and air pollution benefits of green roofs into an economic model that captures the building-specific scale. Currently, green roofs are primarily valued on increased roof longevity, reduced stormwater runoff, and decreased building energy consumption. Proper valuation of these benefits can reduce the present value of a green roof if investors look beyond the upfront capital costs. Net present value (NPV) analysis comparing a conventional roof system to an extensive green roof system demonstrates that at the end of the green roof lifetime the NPV for the green roof is between 20.3 and 25.2% less than the NPV for the conventional roof over 40 years. The additional upfront investment is recovered at the time when a conventional roof would be replaced. Increasing evidence suggests that green roofs may play a significant role in urban air quality improvement For example, uptake of N0x is estimated to range from $1683 to $6383 per metric ton of NOx reduction. These benefits were included in this study, and results translate to an annual benefit of $895-3392 for a 2000 square meter vegetated roof. Improved air quality leads to a mean NPV for the green roof that is 24.5-40.2% less than the mean conventional roof NPV. Through innovative policies, the inclusion of air pollution mitigation and the reduction of municipal stormwater infrastructure costs in economic valuation of environmental benefits of green roofs can reduce the cost gap that currently hinders U.S. investment in green roof technology. PMID:18409652

  11. Environmental, economic, and energetic costs and benefits of biodiesel and ethanol biofuels

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Jason; Nelson, Erik; Tilman, David; Polasky, Stephen; Tiffany, Douglas

    2006-01-01

    Negative environmental consequences of fossil fuels and concerns about petroleum supplies have spurred the search for renewable transportation biofuels. To be a viable alternative, a biofuel should provide a net energy gain, have environmental benefits, be economically competitive, and be producible in large quantities without reducing food supplies. We use these criteria to evaluate, through life-cycle accounting, ethanol from corn grain and biodiesel from soybeans. Ethanol yields 25% more energy than the energy invested in its production, whereas biodiesel yields 93% more. Compared with ethanol, biodiesel releases just 1.0%, 8.3%, and 13% of the agricultural nitrogen, phosphorus, and pesticide pollutants, respectively, per net energy gain. Relative to the fossil fuels they displace, greenhouse gas emissions are reduced 12% by the production and combustion of ethanol and 41% by biodiesel. Biodiesel also releases less air pollutants per net energy gain than ethanol. These advantages of biodiesel over ethanol come from lower agricultural inputs and more efficient conversion of feedstocks to fuel. Neither biofuel can replace much petroleum without impacting food supplies. Even dedicating all U.S. corn and soybean production to biofuels would meet only 12% of gasoline demand and 6% of diesel demand. Until recent increases in petroleum prices, high production costs made biofuels unprofitable without subsidies. Biodiesel provides sufficient environmental advantages to merit subsidy. Transportation biofuels such as synfuel hydrocarbons or cellulosic ethanol, if produced from low-input biomass grown on agriculturally marginal land or from waste biomass, could provide much greater supplies and environmental benefits than food-based biofuels. PMID:16837571

  12. Combining Water Quality and Cost-Benefit Analysis to Examine the Implications of Agricultural Best Management Practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rao, N. S.; Easton, Z. M.; Lee, D. R.; Steenhuis, T. S.

    2007-12-01

    Nutrient runoff from agricultural fields threatens water quality and can impair habitats in many watersheds. Agencies consider these potential risks as they determine acceptable levels of nutrient loading. For example, in the New York City (NYC) watershed, the Environmental Protection Agency's Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for phosphorus (P) has been set at 15μg P L-1 to protect against eutrophication and bacterial outbreaks. In the NYC watersheds agricultural Best Management Practices (BMPs) are the primary means to control nonpoint source P loading. BMPs include riparian buffers, filter strips, manure storage facilities, crop rotation, stripcropping, tree planting and nutrient management plans (NMPs). Water quality research on BMPs to date has included studies on site-specificity of different BMPs, short and long term BMP efficacy, and placement of BMPs with respect to critical source areas. A necessary complement to studies addressing water quality aspects of different BMPs are studies examining the cost-benefit aspects of BMPs. In general, there are installment, maintenance and opportunity costs associated with each BMP, and there are benefits, including cost share agreements between farmers and farm agencies, and increased efficiency of farm production and maintenance. Combining water quality studies and related cost-benefit analyses would help planners and watershed managers determine how best improve water quality. Our research examines the costs-benefit structure associated with BMP scenarios on a one-farm headwater watershed in the Catskill Mountains of NY. The different scenarios include "with and without" BMPs, combinations of BMPs, and different BMP placements across agricultural fields. The costs associated with each BMP scenarios are determined using information from farm agencies and watershed planning agencies. With these data we perform a cost-benefit analysis for the different BMP scenarios and couple the water quality modeling using the

  13. Systemic solutions for multi-benefit water and environmental management.

    PubMed

    Everard, Mark; McInnes, Robert

    2013-09-01

    The environmental and financial costs of inputs to, and unintended consequences arising from narrow consideration of outputs from, water and environmental management technologies highlight the need for low-input solutions that optimise outcomes across multiple ecosystem services. Case studies examining the inputs and outputs associated with several ecosystem-based water and environmental management technologies reveal a range from those that differ little from conventional electro-mechanical engineering techniques through methods, such as integrated constructed wetlands (ICWs), designed explicitly as low-input systems optimising ecosystem service outcomes. All techniques present opportunities for further optimisation of outputs, and hence for greater cumulative public value. We define 'systemic solutions' as "…low-input technologies using natural processes to optimise benefits across the spectrum of ecosystem services and their beneficiaries". They contribute to sustainable development by averting unintended negative impacts and optimising benefits to all ecosystem service beneficiaries, increasing net economic value. Legacy legislation addressing issues in a fragmented way, associated 'ring-fenced' budgets and established management assumptions represent obstacles to implementing 'systemic solutions'. However, flexible implementation of legacy regulations recognising their primary purpose, rather than slavish adherence to detailed sub-clauses, may achieve greater overall public benefit through optimisation of outcomes across ecosystem services. Systemic solutions are not a panacea if applied merely as 'downstream' fixes, but are part of, and a means to accelerate, broader culture change towards more sustainable practice. This necessarily entails connecting a wider network of interests in the formulation and design of mutually-beneficial systemic solutions, including for example spatial planners, engineers, regulators, managers, farming and other businesses, and

  14. Environmental tipping points significantly affect the cost-benefit assessment of climate policies.

    PubMed

    Cai, Yongyang; Judd, Kenneth L; Lenton, Timothy M; Lontzek, Thomas S; Narita, Daiju

    2015-04-14

    Most current cost-benefit analyses of climate change policies suggest an optimal global climate policy that is significantly less stringent than the level required to meet the internationally agreed 2 °C target. This is partly because the sum of estimated economic damage of climate change across various sectors, such as energy use and changes in agricultural production, results in only a small economic loss or even a small economic gain in the gross world product under predicted levels of climate change. However, those cost-benefit analyses rarely take account of environmental tipping points leading to abrupt and irreversible impacts on market and nonmarket goods and services, including those provided by the climate and by ecosystems. Here we show that including environmental tipping point impacts in a stochastic dynamic integrated assessment model profoundly alters cost-benefit assessment of global climate policy. The risk of a tipping point, even if it only has nonmarket impacts, could substantially increase the present optimal carbon tax. For example, a risk of only 5% loss in nonmarket goods that occurs with a 5% annual probability at 4 °C increase of the global surface temperature causes an immediate two-thirds increase in optimal carbon tax. If the tipping point also has a 5% impact on market goods, the optimal carbon tax increases by more than a factor of 3. Hence existing cost-benefit assessments of global climate policy may be significantly underestimating the needs for controlling climate change. PMID:25825719

  15. Environmental tipping points significantly affect the cost−benefit assessment of climate policies

    PubMed Central

    Cai, Yongyang; Judd, Kenneth L.; Lenton, Timothy M.; Lontzek, Thomas S.; Narita, Daiju

    2015-01-01

    Most current cost−benefit analyses of climate change policies suggest an optimal global climate policy that is significantly less stringent than the level required to meet the internationally agreed 2 °C target. This is partly because the sum of estimated economic damage of climate change across various sectors, such as energy use and changes in agricultural production, results in only a small economic loss or even a small economic gain in the gross world product under predicted levels of climate change. However, those cost−benefit analyses rarely take account of environmental tipping points leading to abrupt and irreversible impacts on market and nonmarket goods and services, including those provided by the climate and by ecosystems. Here we show that including environmental tipping point impacts in a stochastic dynamic integrated assessment model profoundly alters cost−benefit assessment of global climate policy. The risk of a tipping point, even if it only has nonmarket impacts, could substantially increase the present optimal carbon tax. For example, a risk of only 5% loss in nonmarket goods that occurs with a 5% annual probability at 4 °C increase of the global surface temperature causes an immediate two-thirds increase in optimal carbon tax. If the tipping point also has a 5% impact on market goods, the optimal carbon tax increases by more than a factor of 3. Hence existing cost−benefit assessments of global climate policy may be significantly underestimating the needs for controlling climate change. PMID:25825719

  16. Potential environmental benefits of ionophores in ruminant diets.

    PubMed

    Tedeschi, Luis Orlindo; Fox, Danny Gene; Tylutki, Thomas Paul

    2003-01-01

    A concern of the USEPA is the volatilization of NH3 from animal manure and CH4 produced from ruminal fermentation. Excess N in the environment has been associated with adverse effects on human health, and CH4 and N2O emissions are sources of greenhouse gases. The objectives of this paper are to summarize and quantify the benefits of ionophores, principally monensin, in decreasing NH3 and CH4 emissions to the environment and reducing resource utilization in cattle (Bos spp.) production. The data indicate that monensin in the diets of ruminants may decrease protein degradation in the rumen and may increase feed protein utilization by an average of 3.5 percentage units. These changes would have an effect in reducing N losses and decreasing fecal N and the amount of protein that must be fed to meet animal requirements. Additionally, CH4 is produced by enteric fermentation in ruminants, which is responsible for about 33 to 39% of CH4 emissions from agriculture. Ionophores can reduce CH4 production by 25% and decrease feed intake by 4% without affecting animal performance. The inclusion of monensin in beef and dairy cattle diets may benefit air quality by reducing CH4 and N emissions and water quality by reducing N in manure, which can potentially leave the farm through leaching into ground water and through runoff into surface water. PMID:14535299

  17. Buried Treasure: The Environmental, Economic, and Employment Benefits of Geothermal Energy (Revised)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    2004-11-01

    This new publication supplants older DOE publications regarding environmental impacts, providing updated and new information on environmental, economic, and employment benefits and impacts of geothermal energy.

  18. Environmental benefits of Boston Harbor clean-up projects

    SciTech Connect

    Connor, M.S.; Smith, W.M. )

    1990-01-09

    The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority has undertaken one of the largest public works projects in the country to control the pollution of Boston Harbor. The project includes construction of a new primary and secondary treatment plant and sludge treatment facilities, excavation of a long ocean outfall and diffuser, and a solution to the overflow of mixed sewage and stormwater during storms; it will take over twenty years and billions of dollars to construct. A comparison of the relative costs and environmental benefits of relative costs and environmental benefits of the various construction projects, and other pollution control strategies, shows that some projects are more cost-effective than others for solving specific pollution problems. The capture and treatment of combined sewer overflow (CSO) will result in a more dramatic reduction of pathogen contamination than will completion of the primary and secondary treatment plants. Although the flow of raw sewage is intermittent and relatively small, it has high concentrations of bacteria and viruses. On the other hand, the new treatment plants will be more important in reducing toxic contamination of fish and shellfish. In summary, all the planned clean-up projects appear to be necessary to reach the goal of a swimmable, fishable Boston Harbor.

  19. Economic and environmental benefits of higher-octane gasoline.

    PubMed

    Speth, Raymond L; Chow, Eric W; Malina, Robert; Barrett, Steven R H; Heywood, John B; Green, William H

    2014-06-17

    We quantify the economic and environmental benefits of designing U.S. light-duty vehicles (LDVs) to attain higher fuel economy by utilizing higher octane (98 RON) gasoline. We use engine simulations, a review of experimental data, and drive cycle simulations to estimate the reduction in fuel consumption associated with using higher-RON gasoline in individual vehicles. Lifecycle CO2 emissions and economic impacts for the U.S. LDV fleet are estimated based on a linear-programming refinery model, a historically calibrated fleet model, and a well-to-wheels emissions analysis. We find that greater use of high-RON gasoline in appropriately tuned vehicles could reduce annual gasoline consumption in the U.S. by 3.0-4.4%. Accounting for the increase in refinery emissions from production of additional high-RON gasoline, net CO2 emissions are reduced by 19-35 Mt/y in 2040 (2.5-4.7% of total direct LDV CO2 emissions). For the strategies studied, the annual direct economic benefit is estimated to be $0.4-6.4 billion in 2040, and the annual net societal benefit including the social cost of carbon is estimated to be $1.7-8.8 billion in 2040. Adoption of a RON standard in the U.S. in place of the current antiknock index (AKI) may enable refineries to produce larger quantities of high-RON gasoline. PMID:24870412

  20. Environmental care in agricultural catchments: Toward the communicative catchment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Peter

    1991-11-01

    Substantial land degradation of agricultural catchments in Australia has resulted from the importation of European farming methods and the large-scale clearing of land. Rural communities are now being encouraged by government to take responsibility for environmental care. The importance of community involvement is supported by the view that environmental problems are a function of interactions between people and their environment. It is suggested that the commonly held view that community groups cannot care for their resources is due to inappropriate social institutions rather that any inherent disability in people. The communicative catchment is developed as a vision for environmental care into the future. This concept emerges from a critique of resource management through the catchment metaphors of the reduced, mechanical, and the complex, evolving catchment, which reflect the development of systemic and people-centered approaches to environmental care. The communicative catchment is one where both community and resource managers participate collaboratively in environmental care. A methodology based on action research and systemic thinking (systemic action research) is proposed as a way of moving towards the communicative catchment of the future. Action research is a way of taking action in organizations and communities that is participative and informed by theory, while systemic thinking takes into account the interconnections and relationships between social and natural worlds. The proposed vision, methodology, and practical operating principles stem from involvement in an action research project looking at extension strategies for the implementation of total catchment management in the Hunter Valley, New South Wales.

  1. Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    SciTech Connect

    K. Rasmuson; K. Rautenstrauch

    2004-09-14

    This analysis is one of 10 technical reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN) (i.e., the biosphere model). It documents development of agricultural and environmental input parameters for the biosphere model, and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the repository at Yucca Mountain. The ERMYN provides the TSPA with the capability to perform dose assessments. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships between the major activities and their products (the analysis and model reports) that were planned in ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the ERMYN and its input parameters.

  2. Environmental and socioeconomic benefits and limitations of water harvesting techniques in semiarid regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Díaz-Pereira, Elvira; Asunción Romero-Díaz, María; de Vente, Joris

    2016-04-01

    Under climate change, sustainable management of soil and water resources is increasingly important, especially in rainfed agroecosystems of semiarid environments. Water harvesting refers to a range of techniques for the collection and management of flood or rainwater for domestic and agricultural use and for water retention in natural ecosystems. Water harvesting represents a good example of sustainable management of water resources that contribute to water and food security. However, there are often environmental and socioeconomic constraints for implementation of water harvesting techniques, so each condition asks for a specific solution. Here we aim to highlight the environmental and socioeconomic benefits, requirements and limitations of different water harvesting techniques and to characterize their implications for provisioning, regulating, supporting, and cultural ecosystem services. We reviewed 62 water harvesting techniques for semiarid regions extracted from the WOCAT (World Overview of Conservation Approaches and Technologies) database. We discuss aspects related to: i) human and environmental characteristics, ii) cost-benefit ratio during implementation and maintenance phases, iii) socioeconomic and environmental impacts at local and regional scales, and, iv) impacts on ecosystem services. Our review reveals that water harvesting represents very diverse methods of collecting and managing floodwaters and surface runoff. We grouped techniques as 'floodwater harvesting', 'macro-catchment water harvesting', 'micro-catchment water harvesting', and 'rooftop and courtyard' water harvesting. Almost half of all technologies originates from traditional knowledge. The implementation of water harvesting is generally positive on the short-term, to very positive on the long-term, while its maintenance is very positive at short and long-term. However, perception depends on the type of water harvesting and local conditions. Most relevant socioeconomic benefits from

  3. Environmental-benefit analysis of two urban waste collection systems.

    PubMed

    Aranda Usón, Alfonso; Ferreira, Germán; Zambrana Vásquez, David; Zabalza Bribián, Ignacio; Llera Sastresa, Eva

    2013-10-01

    Sustainable transportation infrastructure and travel policies aim to optimise the use of transportation systems to achieve economic and related social and environmental goals. To this end, a novel methodology based on life cycle assessment (LCA) has been developed in this study, with the aim of quantifying, in terms of CO2 emissions equivalent, the impact associated with different alternatives of waste collection systems in different urban typologies. This new approach is focussed on saving energy and raw materials and reducing the environmental impact associated with the waste collection system in urban areas, as well as allowing the design and planning of the best available technologies and most environment-friendly management. The methodology considers a large variety of variables from the point of view of sustainable urban transport such as the location and size of the urban area, the amount of solid waste generated, the level of social awareness on waste separation procedures, the distance between houses and waste collection points and the distance from the latter to the possible recovery plants and/or landfills, taking into account the material and energy recovery ratio within an integrated waste management system. As a case study, two different waste collection systems have been evaluated with this methodology in the ecocity Valdespartera located in Zaragoza, Spain, consisting of approximately 10,000 homes: (i) a system based on traditional truck transportation and manual collection, and (ii) a stationary vacuum waste collection system. Results show that, when operating at loads close to 100%, the stationary collection system has the best environmental performance in comparison with the conventional system. In contrast, when operating at load factors around 13% the environmental benefits in terms of net CO2-eq. emissions for the stationary collection system are around 60% lower in comparison with the conventional one. PMID:23792249

  4. Potential environmental benefits of prospective genetic changes in broiler traits.

    PubMed

    Leinonen, I; Williams, A G; Kyriazakis, I

    2016-02-01

    A system approach-based Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) framework, combined with a simple mechanistic model of bird energy balance was used to predict the potential effects of 15 y prospective broiler breeding on the environmental impacts of the standard UK broiler production system. The year 2014 Ross 308 genotype was used as a baseline, and a future scenario was specified from rates of genetic improvement predicted by the industry. The scenario included changes in the traits of growth rate (reducing the time to reach a target weight 2.05 kg from 34 d to 27 d), body lipid content, carcass yield, mortality and the number of chicks produced by a breeder hen. Diet composition was adjusted in order to accommodate the future nutrient requirements of the birds following the genetic change. The results showed that predicted changes in biological performance due to selective breeding could lead to reduced environmental impacts of the broiler production chain, most notably in the Eutrophication Potential (by 12%), Acidification Potential (by 10%) and Abiotic Resource Use (by 9%) and Global Warming Potential (by 9%). These reductions were mainly caused by the reduced maintenance energy requirement and thus lower feed intake, resulting from the shorter production cycle, together with the increased carcass yield. However, some environmental benefits were limited by the required changes in feed composition (e.g., increased inclusion of soy meal and vegetable oil) as a result of the changes in bird nutrient requirements. This study is the first one aiming to link the mechanistic animal modeling approach to predicted genetic changes in order to produce quantitative estimates of the future environmental impacts of broiler production. Although a more detailed understanding on the mechanisms of the potential changes in bird performance and their consequences on feeding and husbandry would be still be needed, the modeling framework produced in this study provides a starting point for

  5. Energy, Economic, and Environmental Benefits of the Solar America Initiative

    SciTech Connect

    Grover, S.

    2007-08-01

    The President's Solar America Initiative (SAI) was launched in January 2006 as part of the administration's Advanced Energy Initiative. The SAI is being led by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Solar Energy Technologies Program (SETP), with NREL providing analytical and technical support. The SAI has a goal of installing 5-10 GW of photovoltaic (PV) systems in the United States by 2015 and 70-100 GW of PV systems in the United States by 2030. To make PV cost-competitive with other energy resources, this requires that the installed cost of PV fall from approximately $8/Wdc in 2005 to $3.3/Wdc in 2015 and $2.5/Wdc in 2030. This report presents estimates of the potential energy, economic, and environmental benefits that could result should the SAI PV installation goals be achieved.

  6. Analyzing the Barriers and Benefits toward Instructional Technology Infusion in North Carolina and Virginia Secondary Agricultural Education Curricula.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alston, Antoine J.; Miller, W. Wade

    2002-01-01

    The purpose of this research study was to identify the potential barriers and benefits of instructional technology infusion in North Carolina and Virginia secondary agricultural education curricula. Focus is placed on determining the future role that instructional technology will play in secondary agricultural curricula and determining the…

  7. Pectic oligosaccharides from agricultural by-products: production, characterization and health benefits.

    PubMed

    Babbar, Neha; Dejonghe, Winnie; Gatti, Monica; Sforza, Stefano; Elst, Kathy

    2016-08-01

    Pectin containing agricultural by-products are potential sources of a new class of prebiotics known as pectic oligosaccharides (POS). In general, pectin is made up of homogalacturonan (HG, α-1,4-linked galacturonic acid monomers) and rhamnogalacturonan (RG, alternate galacturonic acid and rhamnose backbone with neutral side chains). Controlled hydrolysis of pectin containing agricultural by-products like sugar beet, apple, olive and citrus by chemical, enzymatic and hydrothermal can be used to produce oligo-galacturonides (GalpOS), galacto-oligosaccharides (GalOS), rhamnogalacturonan-oligosaccharides (RGOS), etc. However, extensive research is needed to establish the role of POS, both as a prebiotic as well as therapeutic agent. This review comprehensively covers different facets of POS, including the nature and chemistry of pectin and POS, potential agricultural residual sources of pectin, pre-treatment methods for facilitating selective extraction of pectin, identification and characterization of POS, health benefits and important applications of POS in food and feed. This review has been compiled to establish a platform for future research in the purification and characterization of POS and for in vivo and in vitro studies of important POS, so that they could be commercially exploited. PMID:25641325

  8. Environmental benefits of transport and stationary fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, David; Hörmandinger, Günter

    The potential environmental benefits of using fuel cells in cars, buses and stationary combined heat and power (CHP) plants of different sizes have not been well-researched. This environmental analysis was conducted for the UK on a `full fuel cycle' basis, encompassing all greenhouse gas and regulated pollutant emissions for the supply chain and end-use technology under consideration. Solid polymer fuel cells (SPFCs) with methanol or natural gas reformers were analysed for cars, SPFCs and phosphoric acid fuel cells (PAFCs) with on-board hydrogen for buses. CHP plants were PAFCs or solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). Each option was compared with one or more conventional technologies. In all cases fuel cell technologies have substantially reduced emissions in comparison with conventional technologies. Regulated emissions are lowest, by up to two orders of magnitude, and those that do occur are primarily in the fuel supply chain. The fuel cell technologies are more efficient in all cases, and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are reduced broadly in line with energy savings. Methane emissions increase due to fuel switching, e.g. from petrol to natural gas powered buses, but from a very low base. The study pinpoints some areas in which alternative approaches could be made - the methods for generating and transporting hydrogen have a significant bearing on energy consumption and emissions. However, it is clear that from an overall emissions perspective the use of fuel cells in transport and power generation is highly beneficial.

  9. Potential Environmental Benefits from Increased Use of Bioenergy in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Shuyang; Freedman, Bill; Gao, Jixi

    2007-09-01

    Because of its large population and rapidly growing economy, China is confronting a serious energy shortage and daunting environmental problems. An increased use of fuels derived from biomass could relieve some demand for nonrenewable sources of energy while providing environmental benefits in terms of cleaner air and reduced emissions of greenhouse gases. In 2003, China generated about 25.9 × 108 metric tons of industrial waste (liquid + solid), 14.7 × 108 metric tons/year (t/y) of manure (livestock + human), 7.1 × 108 t/y of crop residues and food-processing byproducts, 2 × 108 t/y of fuelwood and wood manufacturing residues, and 1.5 × 108 t/y of municipal waste. Biofuels derived from these materials could potentially displace the use of about 4.12 × 108 t/y of coal and 3.75 × 106 t/y of petroleum. An increased bioenergy use of this magnitude would help to reduce the emissions of key air pollutants: SO2 by 11.6 × 106 t/y, NOX by 1.48 × 106 t/y, CO2 by 1.07 × 109 t/y, and CH4 by 50 × 106 t/y. The reduced SO2 emissions would be equivalent to 54% of the national emissions in 2003, whereas those for CO2 are 30%. It is important to recognize, however, that large increases in the use of biomass fuels also could result in socioeconomic and environmental problems such as less production of food and damage caused to natural habitats.

  10. Potential environmental benefits from increased use of bioenergy in China.

    PubMed

    Fan, Shuyang; Freedman, Bill; Gao, Jixi

    2007-09-01

    Because of its large population and rapidly growing economy, China is confronting a serious energy shortage and daunting environmental problems. An increased use of fuels derived from biomass could relieve some demand for nonrenewable sources of energy while providing environmental benefits in terms of cleaner air and reduced emissions of greenhouse gases. In 2003, China generated about 25.9 x 10(8) metric tons of industrial waste (liquid + solid), 14.7 x 10(8) metric tons/year (t/y) of manure (livestock + human), 7.1 x 10(8) t/y of crop residues and food-processing byproducts, 2 x 10(8) t/y of fuelwood and wood manufacturing residues, and 1.5 x 10(8) t/y of municipal waste. Biofuels derived from these materials could potentially displace the use of about 4.12 x 10(8) t/y of coal and 3.75 x 10(6) t/y of petroleum. An increased bioenergy use of this magnitude would help to reduce the emissions of key air pollutants: SO(2 )by 11.6 x 10(6) t/y, NO(X) by 1.48 x 10(6) t/y, CO2 by 1.07 x 10(9) t/y, and CH4 by 50 x 10(6) t/y. The reduced SO(2) emissions would be equivalent to 54% of the national emissions in 2003, whereas those for CO2 are 30%. It is important to recognize, however, that large increases in the use of biomass fuels also could result in socioeconomic and environmental problems such as less production of food and damage caused to natural habitats. PMID:17638052

  11. Agricultural-to-hydropower water transfers: sharing water and benefits in hydropower-irrigation systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tilmant, A.; Goor, Q.; Pinte, D.

    2009-03-01

    This paper presents a methodology to assess agricultural-to-hydropower water transfers in water resources systems where irrigation crop production and hydropower generation are the main economic activities. In many countries, water for crop irrigation is often considered as a static asset: irrigation water is usually allocated by a system of limited annual rights to use a prescribed volume of water. The opportunity cost (forgone benefits) of this static management approach may be important in river basins where large irrigation areas are present in the upstream reaches. Temporary reallocation of some (or all) of the irrigation water downstream to consumptive and/or non-consumptive users can increase the social benefits if the sum of the downstream productivities exceeds those of the upstream farmers whose entitlements are curtailed. However, such a dynamic allocation process will be socially acceptable if upstream farmers are compensated for increasing the availability of water downstream. This paper also presents a methodology to derive the individual contribution of downstream non-consumptive users, i.e. hydropower plants, to the financial compensation of upstream farmers. This dynamic management approach is illustrated with a cascade of multipurpose reservoirs in the Euphrates river basin. The analysis of simulation results reveals that, on average, the annual benefits obtained with the dynamic allocation process are 6% higher that those derived from a static allocation.

  12. Agricultural livelihoods in coastal Bangladesh under climate and environmental change--a model framework.

    PubMed

    Lázár, Attila N; Clarke, Derek; Adams, Helen; Akanda, Abdur Razzaque; Szabo, Sylvia; Nicholls, Robert J; Matthews, Zoe; Begum, Dilruba; Saleh, Abul Fazal M; Abedin, Md Anwarul; Payo, Andres; Streatfield, Peter Kim; Hutton, Craig; Mondal, M Shahjahan; Moslehuddin, Abu Zofar Md

    2015-06-01

    Coastal Bangladesh experiences significant poverty and hazards today and is highly vulnerable to climate and environmental change over the coming decades. Coastal stakeholders are demanding information to assist in the decision making processes, including simulation models to explore how different interventions, under different plausible future socio-economic and environmental scenarios, could alleviate environmental risks and promote development. Many existing simulation models neglect the complex interdependencies between the socio-economic and environmental system of coastal Bangladesh. Here an integrated approach has been proposed to develop a simulation model to support agriculture and poverty-based analysis and decision-making in coastal Bangladesh. In particular, we show how a simulation model of farmer's livelihoods at the household level can be achieved. An extended version of the FAO's CROPWAT agriculture model has been integrated with a downscaled regional demography model to simulate net agriculture profit. This is used together with a household income-expenses balance and a loans logical tree to simulate the evolution of food security indicators and poverty levels. Modelling identifies salinity and temperature stress as limiting factors to crop productivity and fertilisation due to atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations as a reinforcing factor. The crop simulation results compare well with expected outcomes but also reveal some unexpected behaviours. For example, under current model assumptions, temperature is more important than salinity for crop production. The agriculture-based livelihood and poverty simulations highlight the critical significance of debt through informal and formal loans set at such levels as to persistently undermine the well-being of agriculture-dependent households. Simulations also indicate that progressive approaches to agriculture (i.e. diversification) might not provide the clear economic benefit from the perspective of

  13. PRELIMINARY ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT OF ENERGY CONVERSION PROCESSES FOR AGRICULTURAL AND FOREST PRODUCT RESIDUES. VOLUME 1

    EPA Science Inventory

    A preliminary assessment was made of the environmental impacts of several types of conversion processes for producing energy or fuels from agricultural and forestry residues. Fifteen examples were selected to represent various combinations of agricultural residues and conversion ...

  14. Translational research in agricultural biology - enhancing crop resistivity against environmental stress alongside nutritional quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural security, including producing nutritious food, is needed to make agriculture sustainable. All kinds of genetically engineered (transgenic) lines have been developed, including transgenic lines that have promise of withstanding environmental extremes (abiotic and biotic) and others that...

  15. Agricultural pollution control under Spanish and European environmental policies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MartíNez, Yolanda; Albiac, José

    2004-10-01

    Nonpoint pollution from agriculture is an important environmental policy issue in Spain and the European Union. Agricultural pollution in Spain is being addressed by the National Irrigation Plan and by the European Water Framework Directive. This article contributes to the ongoing policy decision process by analyzing nonpoint pollution control and presenting results on the efficiency of abatement measures. Results question the reliance of the Water Framework Directive on water pricing as a pollution instrument for reaching good status for all waters because higher water prices close to full recovery cost advocated by the directive appear to be inefficient as an emission control instrument. Another important result is that abatement measures based on input taxes and standards on nitrogen appear to be more suitable than the National Irrigation Plan subsidies designed to promote irrigation investments. The results also contribute with further evidence to the discussion on the appropriate instrument base for pollution control, proving that nonpoint pollution control instruments cannot be assessed accurately without a correct understanding of the key underlying biophysical processes. Nonpoint pollution is characterized by nonlinearities, dynamics, and spatial dependency, and neglect of the dynamic aspects may lead to serious consequences for the design of measures. Finally, a quantitative assessment has been performed to explore discriminating measures based on crop pollution potential on vulnerable soils. No significant welfare gains are found from discriminating control, although results are contingent upon the level of damage, and discrimination could be justified in areas with valuable ecosystems and severe pollution damages.

  16. Estimating the benefits of land imagery in environmental applications: a case study in nonpoint source pollution of groundwater

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bernknopf, Richard L.; Forney, William M.; Raunikar, Ronald P.; Mishra, Shruti K.

    2012-01-01

    Moderate-resolution land imagery (MRLI) is crucial to a more complete assessment of the cumulative, landscape-level effect of agricultural land use and land cover on environmental quality. If this improved assessment yields a net social benefit, then that benefit reflects the value of information (VOI) from MRLI. Environmental quality and the capacity to provide ecosystem services evolve because of human actions, changing natural conditions, and their interaction with natural physical processes. The human actions, in turn, are constrained and redirected by many institutions and regulations such as agricultural, energy, and environmental policies. We present a general framework for bringing together sociologic, biologic, physical, hydrologic, and geologic processes at meaningful scales to interpret environmental implications of MRLI applications. We set out a specific application using MRLI observations to identify crop planting patterns and thus estimate surface management activities that influence groundwater resources over a regional landscape. We tailor the application to the characteristics of nonpoint source groundwater pollution hazards in Iowa to illustrate a general framework in a land use-hydrologic-economic system. In the example, MRLI VOI derives from reducing the risk of both losses to agricultural production and damage to human health and other consequences of contaminated groundwater.

  17. Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    SciTech Connect

    Kaylie Rasmuson; Kurt Rautenstrauch

    2003-06-20

    This analysis is one of nine technical reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN) biosphere model. It documents input parameters for the biosphere model, and supports the use of the model to develop Biosphere Dose Conversion Factors (BDCF). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the repository at Yucca Mountain. The ERMYN provides the TSPA with the capability to perform dose assessments. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships between the major activities and their products (the analysis and model reports) that were planned in the biosphere Technical Work Plan (TWP, BSC 2003a). It should be noted that some documents identified in Figure 1-1 may be under development and therefore not available at the time this document is issued. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003b) describes the ERMYN and its input parameters. This analysis report, ANL-MGR-MD-000006, ''Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'', is one of the five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. This report defines and justifies values for twelve parameters required in the biosphere model. These parameters are related to use of contaminated groundwater to grow crops. The parameter values recommended in this report are used in the soil, plant, and carbon-14 submodels of the ERMYN.

  18. Economic and environmental benefits of landfill gas utilisation in Oman.

    PubMed

    Abushammala, Mohammed Fm; Qazi, Wajeeha A; Azam, Mohammed-Hasham; Mehmood, Umais A; Al-Mufragi, Ghithaa A; Alrawahi, Noor-Alhuda

    2016-08-01

    Municipal solid waste disposed in landfill sites decomposes under anaerobic conditions and produces so-called landfill-gas, which contains 30%-40% of carbon dioxide (CO2) and 50%-60% of methane (CH4). Methane has the potential of causing global warming 25 times more than CO2 Therefore, migration of landfill-gas from landfills to the surrounding environment can potentially affect human life and environment. Thus, this research aims to determine municipal solid waste generation in Oman over the years 1971-2030, to quantify annual CH4 emissions inventory that resulted from this waste over the same period of time, and to determine the economic and environmental benefits of capturing the CH4 gas for energy production. It is found that cumulative municipal solid waste landfilled in Oman reaches 3089 Giga gram (Gg) in the year 2030, of which approximately 85 Gg of CH4 emissions are produced in the year 2030. The study also found that capturing CH4 emissions between the years 2016 and 2030 could attract revenues of up to US$333 million and US$291 million from the carbon reduction and electricity generation, simultaneously. It is concluded that CH4 emissions from solid waste in Oman increases enormously with time, and capture of this gas for energy production could provide a sustainable waste management solution in Oman. PMID:26922087

  19. The Benefits and Barriers toward Diversity Inclusion regarding Agricultural Science Teachers in Texas Secondary Agricultural Education Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    LaVergne, Douglas D.; Larke, Alvin, Jr.; Elbert, Chanda D.; Jones, Wash A.

    2011-01-01

    This study analyzed Texas secondary agricultural education teachers' (n = 232) attitudes toward diversity inclusion in Texas secondary agricultural education programs. Using a web-based questionnaire, the researcher employed a nonproportional stratified random sampling technique. Researchers used descriptive statistics to report demographic and…

  20. Risk-cost-benefit analysis of atrazine in drinking water from agricultural activities and policy implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tesfamichael, Aklilu A.; Caplan, Arthur J.; Kaluarachchi, Jagath J.

    2005-05-01

    This study provides an improved methodology for investigating the trade-offs between the health risks and economic benefits of using atrazine in the agricultural sector by incorporating public attitude to pesticide management in the analysis. Regression models are developed to predict finished water atrazine concentration in high-risk community water supplies in the United States. The predicted finished water atrazine concentrations are then used in a health risk assessment. The computed health risks are compared with the total economic surplus in the U.S. corn market for different atrazine application rates using estimated demand and supply functions developed in this work. Analysis of different scenarios with consumer price premiums for chemical-free and reduced-chemical corn indicate that if the society is willing to pay a price premium, risks can be reduced without a large reduction in the total economic surplus and net benefits may be higher. The results also show that this methodology provides an improved scientific framework for future decision making and policy evaluation in pesticide management.

  1. Carbon sequestration and environmental benefits from no-till systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural carbon (C) sequestration may be one of the most cost-effective ways to slow processes of global warming. Information is needed on the mechanism and magnitude of gas generation and emission from agricultural soils with specific emphasis on tillage mechanisms. This work reviews the scient...

  2. Agricultural-to-hydropower water transfers: sharing water and benefits in hydropower-irrigation systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tilmant, A.; Goor, Q.; Pinte, D.

    2009-07-01

    This paper presents a methodology to assess agricultural-to-hydropower water transfers in water resources systems where irrigation crop production and hydropower generation are the main economic activities. In many countries, water for crop irrigation is often considered as a static asset: irrigation water is usually allocated by a system of limited annual rights to use a prescribed volume of water, which remains to a large extent independent of the availability of water in the basin. The opportunity cost (forgone benefits) of this static management approach may be important in river basins where large irrigation areas are present in the upstream reaches. Continuously adjusting allocation decisions based on the hydrologic status of the system will lead to the temporary reallocation of some (or all) of the irrigation water downstream to consumptive and/or non-consumptive users. Such a dynamic allocation process will increase the social benefits if the sum of the downstream productivities exceeds those of the upstream farmers whose entitlements are curtailed. However, this process will be socially acceptable if upstream farmers are compensated for increasing the availability of water downstream. This paper also presents a methodology to derive the individual contribution of downstream non-consumptive users, i.e. hydropower plants, to the financial compensation of upstream farmers. This dynamic management approach is illustrated with a cascade of multipurpose reservoirs in the Euphrates river basin. The analysis of simulation results reveals that, on average, the annual benefits obtained with the dynamic allocation process are 6% higher that those derived from a static allocation.

  3. Agricultural Chemicals and Radiation. Ag Ed Environmental Education Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tulloch, Rodney W.

    The document is designed to be used as a resource in teaching vocational agriculture high school students about the environment. Agricultural chemicals are the major focus, with some attention to radiation. The importance of safety in agricultural chemical use is stressed, with descriptions of the pesticide label; protective clothing; respiratory…

  4. Environmental effects of planting biomass crops at larger scales on agricultural lands

    SciTech Connect

    Tolbert, V.R.; Downing, M.E.

    1995-09-01

    Increasing from research-scale to larger-scale plantings of herbaceous. and short rotation woody crops on agricultural land in the United States has raised questions about the positive and negative environmental effects of farmland conversion. Research currently underway at experimental plot scales enables us examine runoff quality and quantity, erosion, and changes in soil characteristics associated with these energy crops compared to conventional row crops. A study of the fate of chemicals applied to the different crop types will enhance our knowledge of uptake, release, and off-site movement of nutrients and pesticides. Ongoing biodiversity studies in the North Central US allow us to compare differences in scale of plantings on bird and small mammal populations and habitat use. Plantings of 50--100 or more contiguous acres are needed to allow both researchers and producers to determine the benefits of including temporal energy crop rotations in the landscape. Results from these larger-scale plantings will help identify (1) the monitoring requirements needed to determine environmental effects of larger-scale plantings, (2) the best methods to determine the environmental effects of rotation length and the best crop management strategies for full-scale production. Because of the variations in soils, temperature, rainfall and other climatic conditions, as well as differences in the types of energy crops most suited for different regions, monitoring of large-scale plantings in these different regions of the US will be required to predict the environmental effects of regional agricultural land-use shifts for full-scale plantings.

  5. Environmental effects of planting energy crops at larger scales on agricultural lands

    SciTech Connect

    Tolbert, V.R.; Downing, M.

    1995-09-01

    Increasing from research-scale to larger-scale plantings of herbaceous and short rotation woody crops on agricultural land in the United States has raised questions about the positive and negative environmental effects of farmland conversion. Research currently underway at experimental plot scales enables us examine runoff quality and quantity, erosion, and changes in soil characteristics associated with these energy crops compared to conventional row crops. A study of the fate of chemicals applied to the different crop types will enhance our knowledge of uptake, release, and off-site movement of nutrients and pesticides. Ongoing biodiversity studies in the North Central US allow us to compare differences in scale of plantings on bird and small mammal populations and habitat use. Plantings of 50--100 or more contiguous acres are needed to allow both researchers and producers to determine the benefits of including temporal energy crop rotations in the landscape. Results from these larger-scale plantings will help identify (1) the monitoring requirements needed to determine environmental effects of larger-scale plantings, (2) the best methods to determine the environmental effects of rotation length and the best crop management strategies for full-scale production. Because of the variations in soils, temperature, rainfall and other climatic conditions, as well as differences in the types of energy crops most suited for different regions, monitoring of large-scale plantings in these different regions of the US will be required to predict the environmental effects of regional agricultural land-use shifts for full-scale plantings.

  6. Environmental Fate of Double-Stranded RNA in Agricultural Soils

    PubMed Central

    Dubelman, Samuel; Fischer, Joshua; Zapata, Fatima; Huizinga, Kristin; Jiang, Changjian; Uffman, Joshua; Levine, Steven; Carson, David

    2014-01-01

    A laboratory soil degradation study was conducted to determine the biodegradation potential of a DvSnf7 dsRNA transcript derived from a Monsanto genetically modified (GM) maize product that confers resistance to corn rootworm (CRW; Diabrotica spp.). This study provides new information to improve the environmental assessment of dsRNAs that become pesticidal through an RNAi process. Three agricultural soils differing in their physicochemical characteristics were obtained from the U.S., Illinois (IL; silt loam), Missouri (MO; loamy sand) and North Dakota (ND; clay loam), and exposed to the target dsRNA by incorporating insect-protected maize biomass and purified (in vitro-transcribed) DvSnf7 RNA into soil. The GM and control (non-GM maize) materials were added to each soil and incubated at ca. 22°C for 48 hours (h). Samples were collected at 12 time intervals during the incubation period, extracted, and analyzed using QuantiGene molecular analysis and insect bioassay methods. The DT50 (half-life) values for DvSnf7 RNA in IL, MO, and ND soils were 19, 28, and 15 h based on QuantiGene, and 18, 29, and 14 h based on insect bioassay, respectively. Furthermore, the DT90 (time to 90% degradation) values for DvSnf7 RNA in all three soils were <35 h. These results indicate that DvSnf7 RNA was degraded and biological activity was undetectable within approximately 2 days after application to soil, regardless of texture, pH, clay content and other soil differences. Furthermore, soil-incorporated DvSnf7 RNA was non-detectable in soil after 48 h, as measured by QuantiGene, at levels ranging more than two orders of magnitude (0.3, 1.5, 7.5 and 37.5 µg RNA/g soil). Results from this study indicate that the DvSnf7 dsRNA is unlikely to persist or accumulate in the environment. Furthermore, the rapid degradation of DvSnf7 dsRNA provides a basis to define relevant exposure scenarios for future RNA-based agricultural products. PMID:24676387

  7. 16 CFR 260.4 - General environmental benefit claims.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... service has no negative environmental impact. Because it is highly unlikely that marketers can... may convey that the product has no negative environmental impact. Because it is highly unlikely that... negative environmental impact. Because it is highly unlikely that the marketer can substantiate...

  8. 16 CFR 260.4 - General environmental benefit claims.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... service has no negative environmental impact. Because it is highly unlikely that marketers can... may convey that the product has no negative environmental impact. Because it is highly unlikely that... negative environmental impact. Because it is highly unlikely that the marketer can substantiate...

  9. Use of biofuels as an option for environmental benefits

    SciTech Connect

    Grozev, O.; Delkov. A.; Krustev, T.; Angelov, I.

    1996-12-31

    There are options in Bulgaria for increasing wood use as an energy source. According to the data of the Committee of Forests, the mean annual wood biomass increment is estimated over 11 mln dense m{sup 3}. In the same time, the foreseen cut is about 6.4 mln m{sup 3}, but the real harvested amounts are 4.5 to 5 mln m{sup 3}. Planning confirms the usage of coppice forests must be increased several times and the harvested biomass could be appropriately used in chemical products as a renewable fuel. Additional woodfuel production is possible within the frame of 1.553 mln m{sup 3}: from the forests for reconstruction - 558,000 m{sup 3}, from the forests for overgrowth and convertion - 552,000 m{sup 3}, from the high-stem forests through thinnings - 25,000 m{sup 3} coniferous and 418,000 m{sup 3} deciduous. About 3% from the forests in Bulgaria are already dead due to disease, wilting, fire, stand destruction, loss of regenerative abilities, etc., which is about 2 mln m{sup 3} dry wood mass. One of the most important biomass reserves is the small-sized timber obtained during the timber production and the primary treating in the wood-cutting areas and store houses and in the woodworking and furniture plants whose amount is 1.2 mln m{sup 3}. Bioenergetical initiatives must be connected with the possibilities for more effective utilization of the wood during the combustion: more efficient kilns for charcoal production, charcoal packaging (e.g., briquettes and granules), improved woodfuel cook stoves, improved use of charcoal for industry (e.g., steel), etc. It will be started working in these directions in our country because the wood in Bulgaria is still burnt in the most primitive ways. It is completely real and possible to extend the biomass utilization as an energetical source in Bulgaria. The introduction of the proper technologies friendly to the environment recently unknown in Bulgaria will provide environmental benefits to the nature and the society in the country.

  10. Modeling analysis of the benefits of Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) for sustainable agriculture in arid regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartlett, M. S.; Vico, G.; Porporato, A. M.

    2012-12-01

    In view of the pressing needs to sustainably manage water and soil resources, especially in arid and semi-arid regions, here we propose a new carbon assimilation model that couples a simple yet mechanistic description of Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) photosynthesis to the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum. The model captures the full coupling of the CAM photosynthetic pathway with fluctuations in environmental conditions (cycles of light availability and air humidity, changes in soil moisture as driven by plant transpiration and rainfall occurrence). As such, the model is capable of reproducing the different phases of CAM, including daytime stomatal closure and photosynthesis from malic acid, afternoon stomatal opening for direct carbon assimilation, and nighttime stomatal opening for CO2 uptake and malic acid synthesis. Thanks to its versatility, our model allows us to relate CAM productivity, for both obligate and facultative CAM plants, to various soil moisture conditions including hydroclimatic scenarios of rainfall frequency and intensity as well as different night-time conditions of temperature, wind speed, and humidity. Our analyses show the potential productive benefits of CAM cultivation in dryland environments as feedstock and possible biofuel source, in terms of sustainable water use and economic benefits. In particular, the model is used to explore conditions where CAM plant resiliency to water stress makes these plants a more sustainable alternative to C3 and C4 species for potential deficit irrigation.

  11. Risk-Cost-Benefit Analysis Of Atrazine In Drinking Water From Agricultural Activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aklilu, T. A.; Jagath, K. J.; Arthur, C. J.

    2004-12-01

    This study provides a new methodology for investigating the trade-offs between the health risks and economic benefits of using atrazine in the agricultural sector and a more holistic insight to pesticide management issues. Regression models are developed to predict the stream atrazine concentrations and finished water atrazine concentration at high-risk community water supplies in the US using surface water. The predicted finished water atrazine concentrations are then used in health risk assessment. The computed health risks are compared with the total surplus in the US corn market for different atrazine application rates using the demand and supply functions developed in this work. Analysis of different scenarios with consumer price premiums (preferences) for chemical-free to reduced chemical corn provided interesting results on the potential for future pesticide and land use management. This is an interdisciplinary work that has attempted to integrate and consider the interaction between weed sciences, economics, water quality, human health risk and human reaction to changes in different pesticide use scenarios. The results showed that this methodology provides a scientific framework for future decision-making and policy evaluation in pesticide management, especially when better regional and national data are available.

  12. Mitigating Environmental Risks of Wastewater Reuse for Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Al-Busaidi, Ahmed; Ahmed, Mushtaque

    2016-04-01

    Low rainfall and overexploitation of conventional water resources present a critical problem in many regions of the Middle East and North Africa. Therefore, there is a dire need for judicious management of existing water supplies, including incorporating the use of non-conventional water resources. Treated wastewater has shown high potential for reuse in agricultural production, which can thereby contribute to the conservation of surface water and groundwater resources. Therefore, the aim of the study was to optimize treated wastewater reuse in conjunction with other available water resources by taking into consideration their quantity and quality, in addition to the agronomic, environmental, and economic components. It was a joint project between three countries (Oman, Jordan and Tunisia) and funded by USAID. In Oman, the study was done in open field at Sultan Qaboos University. Three types of crops (sweet corn, okra and maize) were grown and irrigated by four types of water (A: 50% groundwater and 50% treated wastewater, B: 100% groundwater, C: 75% treated wastewater and 25% groundwater, and D: 100% treated wastewater). Soil physicochemical properties did not show significant differences with treated wastewater irrigation as compared to groundwater. Heavy metals concentrations for both waters (treated wastewater & groundwater) were very close to each other. However, some significant differences were found between some treatments which could be an indicator for long term changes in soil chemical properties. On other hand, some chemical properties significantly increased (p<0.05) when treated wastewater was applied such as soil electrical conductivity, total carbon and some major elements (N, K, Mg). Soil biological analysis indicated that treated wastewater had no effect in contaminating soil horizons. Whereas, crop physical analysis showed significant increases in plant productivity when plants were irrigated with treated wastewater. The good supply of different

  13. Environmental footprints of Mediterranean versus Western dietary patterns: beyond the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Dietary patterns can substantially vary the resource consumption and environmental impact of a given population. Dietary changes such as the increased consumption of vegetables and reduced consumption of animal products reduce the environmental footprint and thus the use of natural resources. The adherence of a given population to the Mediterranean Dietary Pattern (MDP) through the consumption of the food proportions and composition defined in the new Mediterranean Diet pyramid can thus not only influence human health but also the environment. The aim of the study was to analyze the sustainability of the MDP in the context of the Spanish population in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, agricultural land use, energy consumption and water consumption. Furthermore, we aimed to compare the current Spanish diet with the Mediterranean Diet and in comparison with the western dietary pattern, exemplified by the U.S.A. food pattern, in terms of their corresponding environmental footprints. Methods The environmental footprints of the dietary patterns studied were calculated from the dietary make-up of each dietary pattern, and specific environmental footprints of each food group. The dietary compositions were obtained from different sources, including food balance sheets and household consumption surveys. The specific environmental footprints of food groups were obtained from different available life-cycle assessments. Results The adherence of the Spanish population to the MDP has a marked impact on all the environmental footprints studied. Increasing adherence to the MDP pattern in Spain will reduce greenhouse gas emissions (72%), land use (58%) and energy consumption (52%), and to a lower extent water consumption (33%). On the other hand, the adherence to a western dietary pattern implies an increase in all these descriptors of between 12% and 72%. Conclusions The MDP is presented as not only a cultural model but also as a healthy and environmentally

  14. Apex simulation: environmental benefits of agroforestry and grass buffers for corn-soybean watersheds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Agricultural Policy Environmental Extender (APEX) model is used to simulate the effects of vegetative filter strips on runoff and pollutant loadings from agricultural watersheds. A long-term paired watershed study under corn (Zea mays L-soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.] rotation with agroforestr...

  15. APEX simulation: environmental benefits of agroforestry and grass buffers on corn-soybean watersheds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Agricultural Policy Environmental Extender (APEX) model has the ability to simulate the effects of vegetative filter strips on runoff and pollutant loadings from agricultural watersheds. The objectives of this study were to calibrate and validate the APEX model for three adjacent watersheds and...

  16. The Benefits of Teaching and Learning about Agriculture in Elementary and Junior High Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Knobloch, Neil A.; Ball, Anna L.; Allen, Crystal

    2007-01-01

    The beliefs and mental images that teachers have about agriculture likely influence what and how they integrate agriculture into their instruction. The purpose of this action research study was to explore the beliefs and needs of elementary and junior high school teachers in regard to integrating agriculture into their classrooms. The sample…

  17. GMOs in animal agriculture: time to consider both costs and benefits in regulatory evaluations

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    In 2012, genetically engineered (GE) crops were grown by 17.3 million farmers on over 170 million hectares. Over 70% of harvested GE biomass is fed to food producing animals, making them the major consumers of GE crops for the past 15 plus years. Prior to commercialization, GE crops go through an extensive regulatory evaluation. Over one hundred regulatory submissions have shown compositional equivalence, and comparable levels of safety, between GE crops and their conventional counterparts. One component of regulatory compliance is whole GE food/feed animal feeding studies. Both regulatory studies and independent peer-reviewed studies have shown that GE crops can be safely used in animal feed, and rDNA fragments have never been detected in products (e.g. milk, meat, eggs) derived from animals that consumed GE feed. Despite the fact that the scientific weight of evidence from these hundreds of studies have not revealed unique risks associated with GE feed, some groups are calling for more animal feeding studies, including long-term rodent studies and studies in target livestock species for the approval of GE crops. It is an opportune time to review the results of such studies as have been done to date to evaluate the value of the additional information obtained. Requiring long-term and target animal feeding studies would sharply increase regulatory compliance costs and prolong the regulatory process associated with the commercialization of GE crops. Such costs may impede the development of feed crops with enhanced nutritional characteristics and durability, particularly in the local varieties in small and poor developing countries. More generally it is time for regulatory evaluations to more explicitly consider both the reasonable and unique risks and benefits associated with the use of both GE plants and animals in agricultural systems, and weigh them against those associated with existing systems, and those of regulatory inaction. This would represent a shift away

  18. GMOs in animal agriculture: time to consider both costs and benefits in regulatory evaluations.

    PubMed

    Van Eenennaam, Alison L

    2013-01-01

    In 2012, genetically engineered (GE) crops were grown by 17.3 million farmers on over 170 million hectares. Over 70% of harvested GE biomass is fed to food producing animals, making them the major consumers of GE crops for the past 15 plus years. Prior to commercialization, GE crops go through an extensive regulatory evaluation. Over one hundred regulatory submissions have shown compositional equivalence, and comparable levels of safety, between GE crops and their conventional counterparts. One component of regulatory compliance is whole GE food/feed animal feeding studies. Both regulatory studies and independent peer-reviewed studies have shown that GE crops can be safely used in animal feed, and rDNA fragments have never been detected in products (e.g. milk, meat, eggs) derived from animals that consumed GE feed. Despite the fact that the scientific weight of evidence from these hundreds of studies have not revealed unique risks associated with GE feed, some groups are calling for more animal feeding studies, including long-term rodent studies and studies in target livestock species for the approval of GE crops. It is an opportune time to review the results of such studies as have been done to date to evaluate the value of the additional information obtained. Requiring long-term and target animal feeding studies would sharply increase regulatory compliance costs and prolong the regulatory process associated with the commercialization of GE crops. Such costs may impede the development of feed crops with enhanced nutritional characteristics and durability, particularly in the local varieties in small and poor developing countries. More generally it is time for regulatory evaluations to more explicitly consider both the reasonable and unique risks and benefits associated with the use of both GE plants and animals in agricultural systems, and weigh them against those associated with existing systems, and those of regulatory inaction. This would represent a shift away

  19. Investigating the Benefits of Participatory Action Research for Environmental Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bywater, Krista

    2014-01-01

    Environmental education (EE) continues to focus on enhancing people's ecological knowledge to encourage sustainable actions. This deficit approach presumes that once informed about environmental harms, people will work towards sustainable solutions for healthy societies. Yet research overwhelmingly demonstrates that knowledge of environmental…

  20. Environmental Services from Agricultural Stormwater Detention Systems in Florida

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shukla, A.; Shukla, S.; Knowles, J. M.

    2011-12-01

    Agricultural Stormwater Detention Areas (ADAs) commonly exist for the purpose of downstream flood protection in high water table regions of Florida. In addition to flood protection, they are also considered an important Best Management Practice due to their presumed effectiveness in reducing nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) loads to the Kissimmee-Lake Okeechobee-Everglades (KLE) ecosystem. The KLE ecosystem has been adversely impacted due to excessive P loads. Despite their presumed water quality effectiveness, limited data exist on actual N and P treatment efficiencies. A study was conducted at two ADAs (ADA 1 and ADA 2) located in two row crop farms to quantify the total N and P treatment efficiencies. Water, N, and P inflow and outflows at both ADAs were monitored for a year. Results from ADA 1 suggested that P treatment efficiency was below zero indicating that the ADA was a source of P rather than a sink. On the other hand, N treatment efficiency was found to be 20%. Mean inflow and outflow N concentrations for ADA 1 were 1.6 and 1.4 mg/l respectively, indicating a 9% reduction. Mean inflow and outflow P concentrations were 0.04 and 0.06 mg/l respectively, showing an increase of 67%. Although ADA 1 was effective in retaining N it was not for P. In contrast to ADA 1, the P treatment efficiency of ADA 2 was positive (20%). Nitrogen treatment efficiency of ADA 2 was 22%. Mean inflow and outflow N concentrations for ADA 2 were 4.0 and 2.0 mg/l respectively, indicating 50% reduction. A reduction of 32% was observed for P concentrations with mean inflow and outflow P concentrations of 0.5 and 0.3 mg/l respectively. No P retention at ADA 1 was mainly due to low P adsorption capacity of the soil. Analysis of surface (0-10 cm) and subsurface (10-20 cm) soil P retention characteristics suggested that ADA 1 had no remaining P storage capacity which resulted in it being a source of P. At ADA 2, a large fraction of the area still had P storage capacity which resulted in

  1. The Agricultural Policy/Environmental Extender (Apex) Model: An Emerging Tool for Landscape and Watershed Environmental Analyses

    SciTech Connect

    Gassman, Philip W.; Williams, Jimmy R.; Wang, Xiuying; Saleh, Ali; Osei, Edward; Hauck, Larry; Izaurralde, Roberto C.; Flowers, Joan

    2010-06-01

    The Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender (APEX) model was developed by the Blacklands Research and Extension Center in Temple, Texas. APEX is a flexible and dynamic tool that is capable of simulating a wide array of management practices, cropping systems, and other land uses across a broad range of agricultural landscapes, including whole farms and small watersheds.

  2. Environmental sub models for a macroeconomic model: agricultural contribution to climate change and acidification in Denmark.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Trine S; Jensen, Jørgen D; Hasler, Berit; Illerup, Jytte B; Andersen, Frits M

    2007-01-01

    Integrated modelling of the interaction between environmental pressure and economic development is a useful tool to evaluate environmental consequences of policy initiatives. However, the usefulness of such models is often restricted by the fact that these models only include a limited set of environmental impacts, which are often energy-related emissions. In order to evaluate the development in the overall environmental pressure correctly, these model systems must be extended. In this article an integrated macroeconomic model system of the Danish economy with environmental modules of energy related emissions is extended to include the agricultural contribution to climate change and acidification. Next to the energy sector, the agricultural sector is the most important contributor to these environmental themes and subsequently the extended model complex calculates more than 99% of the contribution to both climate change and acidification. Environmental sub-models are developed for agriculture-related emissions of CH(4), N(2)O and NH(3). Agricultural emission sources related to the production specific activity variables are mapped and emission dependent parameters are identified in order to calculate emission coefficients. The emission coefficients are linked to the economic activity variables of the Danish agricultural production. The model system is demonstrated by projections of agriculture-related emissions in Denmark under two alternative sets of assumptions: a baseline projection of the general economic development and a policy scenario for changes in the husbandry sector within the agricultural sector. PMID:16549237

  3. Agricultural and environmental applications of biochar: Advances and barriers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This summary chapter highlights the achieved advances in biochar research and the existing barriers to biochar application. Substantial research over the past decade on biochar production, characterization, and utilization has indicated that biochar serves as a promising agricultural and environment...

  4. Review of Soil Carbon Management: Economics, Environmental and Societal Benefits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The book provides a “big picture” look at the processes and benefits of soil carbon (c) management. The book is targeted to policy makers and gives policy recommendations in addition to providing technical information. The first section of the book contains a summary of current programs that foste...

  5. Environmental Enterprise Risk Management Benefits for a Government Contractor

    SciTech Connect

    Linda Guinn

    2012-05-01

    An often overlooked advantage that an Environmental Enterprise Risk Management System (ERMS) has to organizations is the added protection from the Civil False Claims Act (FCA) for activities under a government contract.

  6. Cover crops effect on farm benefits and nitrate leaching: linking economic and environmental analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabriel, José Luis; Vanclooster, Marnik; Garrido, Alberto; Quemada, Miguel

    2013-04-01

    Introducing cover crops interspersed with intensively fertilized crops in rotation has the potential to reduce nitrate leaching. However, despite the evident environmental services provided and the range of agronomic benefits documented in the literature, farmers' adoption of the technique is still limited because growing CC could lead to extra costs for the farm in three different forms: direct, indirect, and opportunity costs. Environmental studies are complex, and evaluating the indicators that are representative of the environmental impact of an agricultural system is a complicated task that is conducted by specialized groups and methodologies. Multidisciplinary studies may help to develop reliable approaches that would contribute to choosing the best agricultural strategies based on linking economic and environmental benefits. This study evaluates barley (Hordeum vulgare L., cv. Vanessa), vetch (Vicia villosa L., cv. Vereda) and rapeseed (Brassica napus L., cv. Licapo) as cover crops between maize, leaving the residue in the ground or selling it for animal feeding, and compares the economic and environmental results with respect to a typical maize-fallow rotation. Nitrate leaching for different weather conditions was calculated using the mechanistic-deterministic WAVE model, using the Richards equation parameterised with a conceptual model for the soil hydraulic properties for describing the water flow in the vadose zone, combined with field observed data. The economic impact was evaluated through stochastic (Monte-Carlo) simulation models of farms' profits using probability distribution functions of maize yield and cover crop biomass developed fitted with data collected from various field trials (during more than 5 years) and probability distribution functions of maize and different cover crop forage prices fitted from statistical sources. Stochastic dominance relationships are obtained to rank the most profitable strategies from a farm financial perspective

  7. Benefits of On-Site Management of Environmental Restoration Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Irwin, Michael J. ,P.E.; Wood, Craig, R.E.M.; Kwiecinski, Daniel, P.E.; Alanis, Saul

    2003-02-27

    As Sandia National Laboratories/New Mexico (SNL/NM) began assessing options under which to conduct the remediation of environmental restoration sites, it became clear that the standard routes for permanent disposal of waste contaminated with hazardous materials would be difficult. Publicly, local citizens' groups resisted the idea of large volumes of hazardous waste being transported through their communities. Regulations for the off-site disposal are complicated due to the nature of the environmental restoration waste, which included elevated tritium levels. Waste generated from environmental restoration at SNL/NM included debris and soils contaminated with a variety of constituents. Operationally, disposal of environmental restoration waste was difficult because of the everchanging types of waste generated during site remediation. As an alternative to standard hazardous waste disposal, SNL/NM proposed and received regulatory approval to construct a Corrective Action Management Unit (CAMU). By containing the remediation wastes on-site, SNL/NM's Environmental Restoration (ER) Program managed to eliminate transportation concerns from the public, worked with regulatory agencies to develop a safe, permanent disposal, and modified the waste disposal procedures to accommodate operational changes. SNL/NM accomplished the task and saved approximately $200 million over the life of the CAMU project, as compared to off-site disposal options.

  8. Potential environmental benefits from regulatory consideration of synthetic drilling muds

    SciTech Connect

    Burke, C.J.; Veil, J.A.

    1995-02-01

    When drilling exploration and production wells for oil and gas, drillers use specialized drilling fluids, referred to as muds, to help maintain well control and to remove drill cuttings from the hole. Historically, either water-based muds (WBMs) or oil-based muds (OBMs) have been used for offshore wells. Recently, in response to US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations and drilling-waste discharge requirements imposed by North Sea nations, the drilling industry has developed several types of synthetic-based muds (SBMs) that combine the desirable operating qualities of OBMs with the lower toxicity and environmental impact qualities of WBMs. This report describes the operational, environmental, and economic features of all three types of muds and discusses potential EPA regulatory barriers to wider use of SBMs.

  9. Agricultural phosphorus flow and its environmental impacts in China.

    PubMed

    Chen, M; Chen, J; Sun, F

    2008-11-01

    The transfer of nutrients from agricultural land to waters attracts the attention of policy makers as well as scientists as it plays an increasingly significant role in affecting the water environment. It is therefore essential to first understand the nutrient flow in agricultural systems and then correspondingly formulate a series of cost-effective policies and best management practices (BMPs). On the basis of an emission inventory analysis (EIA) and a nutrient full balance (NFB) calculation, this paper presents a partial substance flow analysis (SFA) method, as well as an Agricultural Phosphorus Flow Analysis (AgiPhosFA) model, to describe the phosphorus (P) flow in the agricultural systems in China and assess the impact of human activities on waters driven by agriculture and rural life. It is estimated that average P input and output were 28.9 kg ha(-1) a(-1) and 14.2 kg ha(-1) a(-1) respectively in China in 2004, while the total P utilization efficiency (Plant uptake P/P input) in agriculture was 45.7% leading to an average P surplus of 14.7 kg ha(-1) a(-1). Excessive P application through mineral fertilizer in the arable farming system has led to the accumulation of soil P and constituted a risk to the recipient water quality, whereas the grassland grazing system is confronted with a severe P deficit problem which has resulted in widespread grass degradation. Therefore it may be an efficient way to mitigate the problems simultaneously by regulating and balancing the P flows between the two systems. Uncertainties of the method and model are also discussed in terms of model conceptualization, data and parameters, and spatial and temporal variability. PMID:18649924

  10. BEYOND DATA MANAGEMENT: HOW ECOINFOMATICS CAN BENEFIT ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING PROGRAMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency’s National Coastal Assessment (NCA), which has collected benthic macroinvertebrates and demersal fishes from thousands of stations around the U.S. coasts since 1990, is taking advantage of recent developments in ecoinformatics to manage,...

  11. Unintended environmental consequences and co-benefits of economic restructuring.

    PubMed

    Liang, Sai; Xu, Ming; Suh, Sangwon; Tan, Raymond R

    2013-11-19

    Current economic restructuring policies have ignored unintended environmental consequences and cobenefits, the understanding of which can provide foundations for effective policy decisions for green economy transformation. Using the input-output life cycle assessment model and taking China as an example, we find that household consumption, fixed capital formation, and export are main drivers to China's environmental impacts. At the product scale, major contributors to environmental impacts vary across different types of impacts. Stimulating the development of seven strategic emerging industries will cause unintended consequences, such as increasing nonferrous metal ore usage, terrestrial acidification, photochemical oxidant formation, human toxicity, and terrestrial ecotoxicity. Limiting the surplus outputs in the construction materials industry and metallurgy industry may only help mitigate some of the environmental impacts caused by China's regulated pollutants, with little effect on reducing other impacts, such as marine eutrophication, terrestrial acidification, photochemical oxidant formation, and particulate matter formation. However, it will bring cobenefits by simultaneously reducing mineral ore usage, human toxicity, marine ecotoxicity, and terrestrial ecotoxicity. Sustainable materials management and integrated policy modeling are possible ways for policy-making to avoid unintended consequences and effectively utilize cobenefits. PMID:24117387

  12. Biochar soil amendment for environmental and agronomic benefits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Char(coal), and a broader term black carbon (that includes soot) has long been recognized as a normal environmental (including soil) constituent resulting from fire and industrial activities. Biochar soil amendment has received global interests as a tool for carbon sequestration in conjunction with...

  13. ASSESSMENT OF FUTURE ENVIRONMENTAL TRENDS AND PROBLEMS: AGRICULTURAL USE OF APPLIED GENETICS AND BIOTECHNOLOGIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Battelle's Columbus Laboratories will identify and define future environmental concerns arising from applying genetic engineering technology to agricultural problems. Two genetic emgineering technologies, plant tissue culture and recombinant DNA, will be considered. Potential env...

  14. Environmental Impact Assessment and Sustainable Agricultural Development--With Special Reference to Kenya.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kiragu, Consolater Wambuku; Goode, Pamela M.

    1990-01-01

    The concept of sustainable agriculture from the perspective of development in Kenya is discussed. The steps in an Environmental Impact Assessment which takes into account the physical, cultural, social, and ecological aspects of the problem are presented. (CW)

  15. Supervised Occupational Experience Record Book for Agricultural Resource Conservation, Environmental Management and Forestry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nickles, Tom

    The record book was designed to meet the occupational experience recordkeeping requirements of vocational agriculture students enrolled in forestry, environmental management, or agriculture resource conservation programs in Ohio. It provides guidelines and forms for recording on-the-job, in-the-school lab, and occupational experience project data.…

  16. Agricultural Machinery 01.0301 for Agribusiness, Natural Resources and Environmental Occupations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wright, John; And Others

    The document presents unit plans which offer lists of experiences and competencies to be learned in the area of agricultural machinery for agribusiness, natural resources, and environmental occupations. The units include: (1) safety; (2) agricultural service center; (3) component parts--bearings, gears, pulleys, clutches, and others; (4) metal…

  17. Grassland-cropping rotations: An avenue for agricultural diversification to reconcile high production with environmental quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A need to increase agricultural production across the world to ensure continued food security appears to be at odds with the urgency to reduce the negative environmental impacts of intensive agriculture. Around the world, intensification has been associated with massive simplification and uniformity...

  18. Integrated crop–livestock systems: Strategies to achieve synergy between agricultural production and environmental quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A need to increase agricultural production across the world for food security appears to be at odds with the urgency to reduce agriculture’s negative environmental impacts. We suggest that a cause of this dichotomy is loss of diversity within agricultural systems at field, farm and landscape scales....

  19. Agricultural land management options following large-scale environmental contamination.

    PubMed

    Vandenhove, Hildegarde; Turcanu, Catrinel

    2011-07-01

    The recent events at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, in Japan, have raised questions about the accumulation of radionuclides in soils, the transfer in the food chain, and the possibility for restricted land use in the foreseeable future. This article summarizes what is generally understood about the application of agricultural countermeasures as a land management option to reduce the transfer of radionuclides in the food chain and to facilitate the return of potentially affected soils to agricultural practices in the vicinity of the Fukushima plant. PMID:21608113

  20. ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT PROGRAM: AGRICULTURAL PROGRAM REPORT 1993

    EPA Science Inventory

    This document provides a comprehensive report on the EMAP Agricultural Lands 1993 Pilot Field Program, which was conducted in Nebraska. esults of the pilot monitoring effort are presented on land use and cover, crop productivity, and soil quality (physical, chemical, and biologic...

  1. Agriculture/Natural Resources Environmental Technician Task List. Occupational Analysis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henrico County Public Schools, Glen Allen, VA. Virginia Vocational Curriculum and Resource Center.

    This publication contains a worker task list and supplementary information for occupations in the agriculture and natural resources cluster of occupations. The task list were generated through the DACUM (Developing a Curriculum) process and/or by analysis by a panel of experts. Tasks are listed in 10 categories: (1) performing investigative…

  2. 75 FR 17763 - National Park Service Benefits-Sharing Final Environmental Impact Statement Record of Decision

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-04-07

    ..., Benefits-Sharing EIS, Center for Resources, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming 82190, (307..., DC; and in the office of the Superintendent, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. Dated: March 5, 2010... National Park Service National Park Service Benefits-Sharing Final Environmental Impact Statement Record...

  3. The environmental cost of reducing agricultural fine particulate matter emissions

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) revised the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) in 2006, reducing acceptable fine particulate (PM2.5) levels; state environmental protection agencies in states with non-attainment areas are required to draft State Implementation Plans (SIP) det...

  4. A targeted conservation approach for improving environmental quality: Multiple benefits and expanded opportunities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We all benefit from maintaining the quality of our water supplies, the productivity of our soils, and the quality of our outdoors for recreation. In areas of the country where agriculture is a key industry, sustaining these resources requires that we maintain healthy working landscapes and vibrant a...

  5. Potential economic benefits of adapting agricultural production systems to future climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fagre, Daniel B.; Pederson, Gregory; Bengtson, Lindsey E.; Prato, Tony; Qui, Zeyuan; Williams, Jimmie R.

    2010-01-01

    Potential economic impacts of future climate change on crop enterprise net returns and annual net farm income (NFI) are evaluated for small and large representative farms in Flathead Valley in Northwest Montana. Crop enterprise net returns and NFI in an historical climate period (1960–2005) and future climate period (2006–2050) are compared when agricultural production systems (APSs) are adapted to future climate change. Climate conditions in the future climate period are based on the A1B, B1, and A2 CO2 emission scenarios from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fourth Assessment Report. Steps in the evaluation include: (1) specifying crop enterprises and APSs (i.e., combinations of crop enterprises) in consultation with locals producers; (2) simulating crop yields for two soils, crop prices, crop enterprises costs, and NFIs for APSs; (3) determining the dominant APS in the historical and future climate periods in terms of NFI; and (4) determining whether NFI for the dominant APS in the historical climate period is superior to NFI for the dominant APS in the future climate period. Crop yields are simulated using the Environmental/Policy Integrated Climate (EPIC) model and dominance comparisons for NFI are based on the stochastic efficiency with respect to a function (SERF) criterion. Probability distributions that best fit the EPIC-simulated crop yields are used to simulate 100 values for crop yields for the two soils in the historical and future climate periods. Best-fitting probability distributions for historical inflation-adjusted crop prices and specified triangular probability distributions for crop enterprise costs are used to simulate 100 values for crop prices and crop enterprise costs. Averaged over all crop enterprises, farm sizes, and soil types, simulated net return per ha averaged over all crop enterprises decreased 24% and simulated mean NFI for APSs decreased 57% between the historical and future climate periods. Although adapting

  6. Environmental and economic benefits of variable rate nitrogen fertilization in a nitrate vulnerable zone.

    PubMed

    Basso, Bruno; Dumont, Benjamin; Cammarano, Davide; Pezzuolo, Andrea; Marinello, Francesco; Sartori, Luigi

    2016-03-01

    Agronomic input and management practices have traditionally been applied uniformly on agricultural fields despite the presence of spatial variability of soil properties and landscape position. When spatial variability is ignored, uniform agronomic management can be both economically and environmentally inefficient. The objectives of this study were to: i) identify optimal N fertilizer rates using an integrated spatio-temporal analysis of yield and site-specific N rate response; ii) test the sensitivity of site specific N management to nitrate leaching in response to different N rates; and iii) demonstrate the environmental benefits of variable rate N fertilizer in a Nitrate Vulnerable Zone. This study was carried out on a 13.6 ha field near the Venice Lagoon, northeast Italy over four years (2005-2008). We utilized a validated crop simulation model to evaluate crop response to different N rates at specific zones in the field based on localized soil and landscape properties under rainfed conditions. The simulated rates were: 50 kg N ha(-1) applied at sowing for the entire study area and increasing fractions, ranging from 150 to 350 kg N ha(-1) applied at V6 stage. Based on the analysis of yield maps from previous harvests and soil electrical resistivity data, three management zones were defined. Two N rates were applied in each of these zones, one suggested by our simulation analysis and the other with uniform N fertilization as normally applied by the producer. N leaching was lower and net revenue was higher in the zones where variable rates of N were applied when compared to uniform N fertilization. This demonstrates the efficacy of using crop models to determine variable rates of N fertilization within a field and the application of variable rate N fertilizer to achieve higher profit and reduce nitrate leaching. PMID:26747986

  7. Innovative grassland management systems for environmental and livelihood benefits

    PubMed Central

    Kemp, David R.; Guodong, Han; Xiangyang, Hou; Michalk, David L.; Fujiang, Hou; Jianping, Wu; Yingjun, Zhang

    2013-01-01

    Grasslands occupy 40% of the world’s land surface (excluding Antarctica and Greenland) and support diverse groups, from traditional extensive nomadic to intense livestock-production systems. Population pressures mean that many of these grasslands are in a degraded state, particularly in less-productive areas of developing countries, affecting not only productivity but also vital environmental services such as hydrology, biodiversity, and carbon cycles; livestock condition is often poor and household incomes are at or below poverty levels. The challenge is to optimize management practices that result in “win-win” outcomes for grasslands, the environment, and households. A case study is discussed from northwestern China, where it has been possible to reduce animal numbers considerably by using an energy-balance/market-based approach while improving household incomes, providing conditions within which grassland recovery is possible. This bottom-up approach was supported by informing and working with the six layers of government in China to build appropriate policies. Further policy implications are considered. Additional gains in grassland rehabilitation could be fostered through targeted environmental payment schemes. Other aspects of the livestock production system that can be modified are discussed. This work built a strategy that has implications for many other grassland areas around the world where common problems apply. PMID:23671092

  8. Innovative grassland management systems for environmental and livelihood benefits.

    PubMed

    Kemp, David R; Guodong, Han; Xiangyang, Hou; Michalk, David L; Fujiang, Hou; Jianping, Wu; Yingjun, Zhang

    2013-05-21

    Grasslands occupy 40% of the world's land surface (excluding Antarctica and Greenland) and support diverse groups, from traditional extensive nomadic to intense livestock-production systems. Population pressures mean that many of these grasslands are in a degraded state, particularly in less-productive areas of developing countries, affecting not only productivity but also vital environmental services such as hydrology, biodiversity, and carbon cycles; livestock condition is often poor and household incomes are at or below poverty levels. The challenge is to optimize management practices that result in "win-win" outcomes for grasslands, the environment, and households. A case study is discussed from northwestern China, where it has been possible to reduce animal numbers considerably by using an energy-balance/market-based approach while improving household incomes, providing conditions within which grassland recovery is possible. This bottom-up approach was supported by informing and working with the six layers of government in China to build appropriate policies. Further policy implications are considered. Additional gains in grassland rehabilitation could be fostered through targeted environmental payment schemes. Other aspects of the livestock production system that can be modified are discussed. This work built a strategy that has implications for many other grassland areas around the world where common problems apply. PMID:23671092

  9. Managing your investment in environmental compliance with integrated cost and benefit tracking analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Easter, C.D.

    1997-12-31

    This paper is designed to assist environmental managers in establishing an integrated approach to tracking the economic cost and benefit of compliance with environmental regulations. The Integrated Environmental Management System (IEMS) consists of a program which outlines reports, permits, data analysis and construction related projects that are necessary for compliance with federal, state and local requirements and establishes a dollar value in terms of both labor hours and capital expenditures for a given facility. This dollar value is cross-referenced with an Environmental Benefit Score (EBS) which is a ``weighted`` function of the following factors: pollution reduction, employee health and safety protection, community/public relations benefits and program/equipment durability. This system will improve the environmental budget managers` ability to efficiently apply resources to the proper project areas for maximum benefit. The data for this paper was compiled by reviewing environmental expenditure data for facilities over the previous decade and analyzing the impact in terms of the heretofore mentioned factors included in the Environmental Benefit Score (EBS). Through this process, a model program was designed which can be applied, with adjustments, to either public or private organizations. It is clear that a well managed and carefully chosen program of resource allocation is more efficient than a blanket program that attempts to broadly comply with all regulatory challenges concurrently.

  10. Using Microbial Source Tracking to Enhance Environmental Stewardship of Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Sherry; Rose, Joan; Flood, Matthew; Aw, Tiong; Hyndman, David

    2016-04-01

    Large scale agriculture relies on the application of chemical fertilizers and animal manure. It is well known that nutrients in excess of a plant's uptake and soil retention capacity can travel to nearby waterways via surface run-off and groundwater pathways, indirectly fertilizing these aquatic ecosystems. It has not yet been possible to distinguish water quality impacts of fertilizer from those derived from human and animal waste sources. However, new microbial source tracking (MST) tools allow specific identification of fecal pollution. Our objective was to examine pollution risks at the regional scale using MST, mapping and classification and regression tree analysis. We present results Bovine M2 genetic marker data from three flow regimes (baseflow, snow melt, and post-planting rain). Key landscape characteristics were related to the presence of the bovine markers and appear to be related to fate and transport. Impacts at this regional watershed scale will be discussed. Our research aims to identify the impacts of agricultural management practices on water quality by linking nutrient concentrations with fecal pollution sources. We hope that our research will provide guidance that will help improve water quality through agricultural best management practices to reduce pathogen contamination.

  11. The Impact of Policy and Institutional Environment on Costs and Benefits of Sustainable Agricultural Land Uses: The Case of the Chittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasul, Golam; Thapa, Gopal B.

    2007-08-01

    As in other mountain regions of Asia, agricultural lands in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) of Bangladesh are undergoing degradation due primarily to environmentally incompatible land-use systems such as shifting cultivation ( jhum) and annual cash crops. The suitable land-use systems such as agroforestry and timber tree plantation provide benefit to the society at large, but they might not provide attractive economic benefits to farmers, eventually constraining a wide-scale adoption of such land-use systems. Therefore, it is essential to evaluate agricultural land-use systems from both societal and private perspectives in the pursuit of promoting particularly environmentally sustainable systems. This article evaluated five major land-use systems being practiced in CHT, namely jhum, annual cash crops, horticulture, agroforestry, and timber plantation. The results of the financial analysis revealed the annual cash crops as the most attractive land use and jhum as the least attractive of the five land-use systems considered under the study. Horticulture, timber plantation, and agroforestry, considered to be suitable land-use systems particularly for mountainous areas, held the middle ground between these two systems. Annual cash crops provided the highest financial return at the cost of a very high rate of soil erosion. When the societal cost of soil erosion is considered, annual cash crops appear to be the most costly land-use system, followed by jhum and horticulture. Although financially less attractive compared to annual cash crops and horticulture, agroforestry and timber plantation are the socially most beneficial land-use systems. Findings of the alternative policy analyses indicate that there is a good prospect for making environmentally sustainable land-use systems, such as agroforestry and timber plantation, attractive for the farmers by eliminating existing legal and institutional barriers, combined with the provision of necessary support services and

  12. Meeting multiple demands: Water transaction opportunities for environmental benefits promoting adaptation to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCoy, Amy

    2015-04-01

    In arid regions, the challenge of balancing water use among a diversity of sectors expands in lock step with conditions of water stress that are exacerbated by climate variability, prolonged drought, and growing water-use demands. The elusiveness of achieving a sustainable balance under conditions of environmental change in the southwestern United States is evidenced by reductions in both overall water availability and freshwater ecosystem health, as well as by recent projections of shortages on the Colorado River within the next five years. The water sustainability challenge in this region, as well as drylands throughout the world, can therefore be viewed through the lens of water stress, a condition wherein demands on land and water -- including the needs of freshwater ecosystems -- exceed reliable supplies, and the full range of water needs cannot be met without tradeoffs across multiple uses. Water stress influences not only ecosystems, but a region's economy, land management, quality of life, and cultural heritage -- each of which requires water to thrive. With respect to promoting successful adaptation to climate change, achieving full water sustainability would allow for water to be successfully divided among water users -- including municipalities, agriculture, and freshwater ecosystems -- at a level that meets the goals of water users and the governing body. Over the last ten to fifteen years, the use of transactional approaches in the western U.S., Mexico, and Australia has proven to be a viable management tool for achieving stream flow and shallow aquifer restoration. By broad definition, environmental water transactions are an equitable and adaptable tool that brings diverse stakeholders to the table to facilitate a fair-market exchange of rights to use water in a manner that benefits both water users and the environment. This talk will present a basic framework of necessary stakeholder engagement, hydrologic conditions, enabling laws and policies

  13. ENVIRONMENTAL GOODS AND SERIVCES FROM RESTORATION ALTERNATIVES: EMERGY-BASED METHOD OF BENEFIT VALUE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Although economic benefit-cost analyses of environmental regulations has been conducted since the 1970s, an effective methodology has yet to be developed for the integrated assessment of regulatory impacts on the larger system as a whole, including its social and environmental as...

  14. Benefits, Motivations, and Barriers Related to Environmental Volunteerism for Older Adults: Developing a Research Agenda

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bushway, Lori J.; Dickinson, Janis L.; Stedman, Richard C.; Wagenet, Linda P.; Weinstein, David A.

    2011-01-01

    Interest in civic engagement focused on the natural environment has grown dramatically, as has the population of older adults. Our article explores the potential for increased environmental volunteerism among older adults to enrich the lives of volunteers while benefitting the community and environmental quality. Curiously, this convergence has…

  15. Solar Program Assessment: Environmental Factors - Solar Agricultural and Industrial Process Heat.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Energy Research and Development Administration, Washington, DC. Div. of Solar Energy.

    The purpose of this report is to present and prioritize the major environmental issues associated with the further development of solar energy as a source of process heat in the industrial and agricultural sectors. To provide a background for this environmental analysis, the basic concepts and technologies of solar process heating are reviewed.…

  16. Protecting and Promoting Indigenous Knowledge: Environmental Adult Education and Organic Agriculture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sumner, Jennifer

    2008-01-01

    Given today's pressing environmental issues, environmental adult educators can help us learn to live more sustainably. One of the models for more sustainable ways of life is organic agriculture, based in a knowledge system that works with nature, not against it. In order to understand this knowledge, we need to frame it in a way that captures all…

  17. Environmental flow deficit at global scale - implication on irrigated agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pastor, Amandine; Ludwig, Fulco; Biemans, Hester; Kabat, Pavel

    2016-04-01

    Freshwater species belong to the most degraded ecosystem on earth. At the beginning of the 21st century, scientists have developed the concept of environmental flow requirements (Brisbane declaration 2003) with the aim of protecting freshwater species in the long term. However, the ecological state of rivers is different across the world depending on their fragmentation, on the presence of dams and reservoirs and on the degree of pollution. To implement new regulations on river flow, it is necessary to evaluate the degree of alteration of rivers which we called "environmental flow deficit". The European water framework directive is still working on evaluating the ecological states of river across Europe. In this study, we calculated monthly environmental flow deficit with the global vegetation dynamic and hydrological model LPJml. Environmental flow requirements were first calculated with the Variable Monthly Flow method (Pastor et al., 2014). Then, we checked in each river basin where and when the actual flow (flow minus abstraction for irrigation) does not satisfy environmental flow requirements. We finally show examples of different river basins such as the Nile and the Amazon to show how climate and irrigation can impact river flow and harm freshwater ecosystems.

  18. Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture within the United States is varied and produces a large value ($200 billion in 2002) of production across a wide range of plant and animal production systems. Because of this diversity, changes in climate will likely impact agriculture throughout the United States. Climate affects crop, ...

  19. Indoor Environmental Quality Benefits of Apartment Energy Retrofits

    SciTech Connect

    Noris, Federico; Adamkiewicz, Gary; Delp, William W.; Hotchi, Toshifumi; Russell, Marion; Singer, Brett C.; Spears, Michael; Vermeer, Kimberly; Fisk, William J.

    2013-06-01

    Sixteen apartments serving low-income populations in three buildings were retrofit with the goal of simultaneously reducing energy consumption and improving indoor environmental quality (IEQ). Retrofit measures varied among apartments and included, among others, envelope sealing, installation of continuous mechanical ventilation systems, upgrading bathroom fans and range hoods, attic insulation, replacement of heating and cooling systems, and adding wall-mounted particle air cleaners. IEQ parameters were measured, generally for two one-week periods before and after the retrofits. The measurements indicate an overall improvement in IEQ conditions after the retrofits. Comfort conditions, bathroom humidity, and concentrations of carbon dioxide, acetaldehyde, volatile organic compounds, and particles generally improved. Formaldehyde and nitrogen dioxide levels decreased in the building with the highest concentrations, were unchanged in a second building, and increased in a third building. IEQ parameters other than particles improved more in apartments with continuous mechanical ventilation systems installed. In general, but not consistently, larger percent increases in air exchange rates were associated with larger percent decreases in indoor levels of the pollutants that primarily come from indoor sources.

  20. Benefits of improved environmental cooperation on a joint DoD/DOE facility

    SciTech Connect

    Pratt, G.K.; Gibson, J.D.

    1995-04-01

    Numerous Federal facilities within the US involve multiple government agencies that face overlapping environmental concerns. This paper highlights the benefits of looking beyond the strict letter of environmental regulations that might affect a single tenant or environmental site to cooperative environmental efforts that focus on the entire facility, consistent with the missions of participating agencies. Using Kirtland Air Force Base (AFB) as a model, seven areas of Department of Defense (DoD) and Department of Energy (DOE) environmental cooperation are discussed that span technical, regulatory compliance, and administrative issues.

  1. Agriculturally induced environmental changes in the Burren Karst, Western Ireland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drew, D.

    1996-10-01

    The Burren plateau of County Clare is a classic example of a plateau karst characterised by patchy, thin soils, a lack of defined surface drainage, and in the instance of the Burren, a rich floristic, archaeological and landscape heritage. Since accession to the European Union and, in particular, as a result of Common Agricultural Policy initiatives, attempts have been made to raise farm incomes and to modernise agriculture in areas such as the Burren. Due to the encouragement of land reclamation and silage production has largely replaced hay farming for winter fodder. These changes pose a threat to groundwater quality by enhancing the leaching of artificial fertilizers or of organic pollutants. The Burren is highly vulnerable to water pollution from silage effluent because of its thin or absent soils and its highly karstified aquifers. A full survey of silage clamps was made in the summers of 1991 and 1992. For each site data were collected to derive the following: mass of silage, effluent produced, hazard rating of site to groundwater, likely discharge of effluent to groundwater and groundwater dilution index. About 60% of clamps were considered to be high risk and 23% medium risk. About 92% of all sites probably allow some effluent to infiltrate groundwater.

  2. Bacterial-Fungal Interactions: Hyphens between Agricultural, Clinical, Environmental, and Food Microbiologists

    PubMed Central

    Frey-Klett, P.; Burlinson, P.; Deveau, A.; Barret, M.; Tarkka, M.; Sarniguet, A.

    2011-01-01

    Summary: Bacteria and fungi can form a range of physical associations that depend on various modes of molecular communication for their development and functioning. These bacterial-fungal interactions often result in changes to the pathogenicity or the nutritional influence of one or both partners toward plants or animals (including humans). They can also result in unique contributions to biogeochemical cycles and biotechnological processes. Thus, the interactions between bacteria and fungi are of central importance to numerous biological questions in agriculture, forestry, environmental science, food production, and medicine. Here we present a structured review of bacterial-fungal interactions, illustrated by examples sourced from many diverse scientific fields. We consider the general and specific properties of these interactions, providing a global perspective across this emerging multidisciplinary research area. We show that in many cases, parallels can be drawn between different scenarios in which bacterial-fungal interactions are important. Finally, we discuss how new avenues of investigation may enhance our ability to combat, manipulate, or exploit bacterial-fungal complexes for the economic and practical benefit of humanity as well as reshape our current understanding of bacterial and fungal ecology. PMID:22126995

  3. Water Quality Benefits of Constructed Wetlands Integrated Within Agricultural Water Recycling Systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Constructed wetlands have been integrated within innovative agricultural water recycling systems, and these systems are now being evaluated at three demonstration sites located in the northwest Ohio portion of the Maumee River Basin (Defiance, Fulton, and Van Wert Counties). The water recycling syst...

  4. The environmental and health impacts of tobacco agriculture, cigarette manufacture and consumption

    PubMed Central

    Novotny, Thomas E; Bialous, Stella Aguinaga; Burt, Lindsay; Curtis, Clifton; Luiza da Costa, Vera; Iqtidar, Silvae Usman; Liu, Yuchen; Pujari, Sameer

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The health consequences of tobacco use are well known, but less recognized are the significant environmental impacts of tobacco production and use. The environmental impacts of tobacco include tobacco growing and curing; product manufacturing and distribution; product consumption; and post-consumption waste. The World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control addresses environmental concerns in Articles 17 and 18, which primarily apply to tobacco agriculture. Article 5.3 calls for protection from policy interference by the tobacco industry regarding the environmental harms of tobacco production and use. We detail the environmental impacts of the tobacco life-cycle and suggest policy responses. PMID:26668440

  5. Assessment of life cycle environmental benefits of an industrial symbiosis cluster in China.

    PubMed

    Yu, Fei; Han, Feng; Cui, Zhaojie

    2015-04-01

    Reusing industrial waste may have impressive potential environmental benefits, especially in terms of the total life cycle, and life cycle assessment (LCA) has been proved to be an effective method to evaluate industrial symbiosis (IS). Circular economy and IS have been developed for decades and have been successful in China. However, very few studies about the environmental benefit assessment of IS applied by LCA in China have been conducted. In the current article, LCA was used to evaluate the environmental benefits and costs of IS, compared with a no-IS scenario for four environmental impact categories. The results showed that four environmental benefits were avoided by the 11 symbiosis performances, namely, 41.6 thousand TJ of primary energy, 4.47 million t CO2e of greenhouse gasses, 19.7 thousand t SO2e of acidification, and 81.1 t PO4(3+)e of eutrophication. Among these IS performances, the comprehensive utilization of red mud produced the most visible benefit. The results also present that energy conservation was the distinctive feature of IS in China. PMID:25339529

  6. The benefits of energy recovery: Economic, environmental and social benefits in recovering energy from waste in the manufacture of cement

    SciTech Connect

    Susel, I.

    1997-12-31

    The Nation gains substantial energy, environmental, health and economic benefits when cement kilns recycle hazardous wastes by recovering their energy value through use as fuel. These benefits include: energy conservation, amounting to more than 20 billion Btu/year, more than twice the amount EPA saves through its Green Lights program; reduced SOx and NOx emissions that would have resulted from burning coal instead of HWDF, avoiding property damages of $120 million/year; reduced fatalities due to reduced coal mining and coal transportation, with these reductions far exceeding the local population risks that EPA addresses with MACT; and a low cost of combustion which provides incentives to small quantity generators to properly dispose of their hazardous materials. If promulgated in the form proposed in 1996, the hazardous waste combustor (HWC) MACT could cause kilns to recycle less HWDF, substantially reducing these benefits, with the Nation losing far more than it gains with the MACT rule. Even in the absence of these adverse consequences, the stringent levels in EPA`s 1996 proposal are not justified by the risks they address and are not cost-effective. 17 refs.

  7. Agriculture sector resource and environmental policy analysis: an economic and biophysical approach.

    PubMed

    House, R; McDowell, H; Peters, M; Heimlich, R

    1999-01-01

    Agricultural pollution of the environment is jointly determined by economic decisions driving land use, production practices, and stochastic biophysical processes associated with agricultural production, land and climate characteristics. It follows that environmental and economic statistics, traditionally collected independently of each other, offer little insight into non-point pollutant loadings. We argue that effective policy development would be facilitated by integrating environmental and economic data gathering, combined with simulation modelling linking economic and biophysical components. Integrated data collection links economics, land use, production methods and environmental loadings. An integrated economic/biophysical modelling framework facilitates policy analysis because monetary incentives to reduce pollution can be evaluated in the context of market costs and returns that influence land use and production activity. This allows prediction of environmental and economic outcomes from alternative policies to solve environmental problems. We highlight steps taken to merge economic and biophysical modelling for policy analysis within the Economic Research Service of the United States Department of Agriculture. An example analysis of a policy to reduce agricultural nitrogen pollution is presented, with the economic and environmental results illustrating the value of linked economic and biophysical analysis. PMID:10231835

  8. Sewage sludge, compost and other representative organic wastes as agricultural soil amendments: Benefits versus limiting factors.

    PubMed

    Alvarenga, Paula; Mourinha, Clarisse; Farto, Márcia; Santos, Teresa; Palma, Patrícia; Sengo, Joana; Morais, Marie-Christine; Cunha-Queda, Cristina

    2015-06-01

    Nine different samples of sewage sludges, composts and other representative organic wastes, with potential interest to be used as agricultural soil amendments, were characterized: municipal sewage sludge (SS1 and SS2), agro industrial sludge (AIS), municipal slaughterhouse sludge (MSS), mixed municipal solid waste compost (MMSWC), agricultural wastes compost (AWC), compost produced from agricultural wastes and sewage sludge (AWSSC), pig slurry digestate (PSD) and paper mill wastes (PMW). The characterization was made considering their: (i) physicochemical parameters, (ii) total and bioavailable heavy metals (Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, Zn and Hg), (iii) organic contaminants, (iv) pathogenic microorganisms and (v) stability and phytotoxicity indicators. All the sludges, municipal or other, comply with the requirements of the legislation regarding the possibility of their application to agricultural soil (with the exception of SS2, due to its pathogenic microorganisms content), with a content of organic matter and nutrients that make them interesting to be applied to soil. The composts presented, in general, some constraints regarding their application to soil, and their impairment was due to the existence of heavy metal concentrations exceeding the proposed limit of the draft European legislation. As a consequence, with the exception of AWSSC, most compost samples were not able to meet these quality criteria, which are more conservative for compost than for sewage sludge. From the results, the composting of sewage sludge is recommended as a way to turn a less stabilized waste into a material that is no longer classified as a waste and, judging by the results of this work, with lower heavy metal content than the other composted materials, and without sanitation problems. PMID:25708406

  9. Overcoming agricultural pollution of water: The challenge of integrating agricultural and environmental policies in the European union. World Bank technical paper

    SciTech Connect

    Scheierling, S.M.

    1995-04-01

    In an effort to address the particular policy challenges posed by the agriculture/water quality dilemma, this study, focuses on the experience of the European Community (EC), where high levels of nitrate, phosphate, and pesticides in surface and groundwater are a source of increasing concern. Agricultural and water quality-related environmental policies at EC level, as well as national level, are examined, and new policy approaches that try to integrate agricultural and environmental considerations are discussed. This study thus provides insights into policy options for controlling agricultural water pollution, which might be useful in other parts of the world.

  10. Holocene-aged sedimentary records of environmental changes and early agriculture in the lower Yangtze, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atahan, P.; Itzstein-Davey, F.; Taylor, D.; Dodson, J.; Qin, J.; Zheng, H.; Brooks, A.

    2008-03-01

    Sedimentary evidence from a total of 21 AMS 14C dates and 192 pollen and charcoal and 181 phytolith samples from three study sites in the archaeologically rich lower Yangtze in China provides an indication of interactions between early agriculturalists and generally highly dynamic environmental conditions. Results suggest that environmental changes influenced agricultural development, and attest the localised environmental impacts of incipient agriculture. Evidence of human activity, in the form of indicators of deforestation and possibly food production, is apparent by ca 7000 BP (early Neolithic or Majiabang). Clearer evidence of human activity dates to ca 4700 BP (late Neolithic or Liangzhu). Extensive, profound and apparently widespread human impacts do not appear until the Eastern Zhou (Iron Age, ca 2800-2200 BP), however, which in the lower Yangtze was a period associated with technological advances in agriculture, increased urbanisation and relatively stable hydro-geomorphological conditions.

  11. CHALLENGES AND BENEFITS OF CONDUCTING ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE RESEARCH IN A SCHOOL SETTING

    PubMed Central

    GUIDRY, VIRGINIA T.; LOWMAN, AMY; HALL, DEVON; BARON, DOTHULA; WING, STEVE

    2015-01-01

    Environmental justice (EJ) research requires attention to consequences for research participants beyond those typically considered by institutional review boards. The imbalance of power between impacted communities and those who create and regulate pollution creates challenges for participation, yet research can also benefit those involved. Our community-academic partnership designed the Rural Air Pollutants and Children's Health (RAPCH) study to provide positive impacts while measuring health effects at three low-resource public middle schools near concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) in North Carolina. We evaluated perceived benefits and challenges of study involvement by interviewing school staff and community liaisons who facilitated data collection. Reported benefits included enhancement of students’ academic environment and increased community environmental awareness; challenges were associated mainly with some participants’ immaturity. Leadership from a strong community-based organization was crucial to recruitment, yet our approach entailed minimal focus on EJ, which may have limited opportunities for community education or organizing for environmental health. PMID:25085828

  12. The potential benefit of improving the dissemination of agricultural weather information to the Mississippi cotton farmer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Priddy, K. T.; Marlatt, W. E. (Principal Investigator)

    1978-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. The potential benefit of improved dissemination of weather information to the Mississippi cotton farmer was estimated at $36,000 per 1000 acres. This is 16% of production cost of cotton in 1976. On a statewide basis, the total potential savings exceeds 100 million dollars.

  13. Economic valuation of environmental benefits from wastewater treatment processes: an empirical approach for Spain.

    PubMed

    Hernández-Sancho, Francesc; Molinos-Senante, María; Sala-Garrido, Ramón

    2010-01-15

    Economic research into the design and implementation of policies for the efficient management of water resources has been emphasized by the European Water Framework Directive (Directive 2000/60/EC). The efficient implementation of policies to prevent the degradation and depletion of water resources requires determining their value in social and economic terms and incorporating this information into the decision-making process. A process of wastewater treatment has many associated environmental benefits. However, these benefits are often not calculated because they are not set by the market, due to inadequate property rights, the presence of externalities, and the lack of perfect information. Nevertheless, the valuation of these benefits is necessary to justify a suitable investment policy and a limited number of studies exist on the subject of the economic valuation of environmental benefits. In this paper, we propose a methodology based on the estimation of shadow prices for the pollutants removed in a treatment process. This value represents the environmental benefit (avoided cost) associated with undischarged pollution. This is a pioneering approach to the economic valuation of wastewater treatment. The comparison of these benefits with the internal costs of the treatment process will provide a useful indicator for the feasibility of wastewater treatment projects. PMID:19903571

  14. A framework for net environmental benefit analysis for remediation or restoration of contaminated sites.

    PubMed

    Efroymson, Rebecca A; Nicolette, Joseph P; Suter, Glenn W

    2004-09-01

    Net environmental benefits are gains in value of environmental services or other ecological properties attained by remediation or ecological restoration minus the value of adverse environmental effects caused by those actions. Net environmental benefit analysis (NEBA) is a methodology for comparing and ranking net environmental benefits associated with multiple management alternatives. A NEBA for chemically contaminated sites typically involves comparison of several management alternatives: (1) leaving contamination in place; (2) physically, chemically, or biologically remediating the site through traditional means; (3) improving ecological value through onsite and offsite restoration alternatives that do not directly focus on removal of chemical contamination; or (4) a combination of those alternatives. NEBA involves activities that are common to remedial alternatives analysis for state regulations and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, post-closure and corrective action permits under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, evaluation of generic types of response actions pertinent to the Oil Pollution Act, and land management actions that are negotiated with regulatory agencies in flexible regulatory environments (i.e., valuing environmental services or other ecological properties, assessing adverse impacts, and evaluating remediation or restoration options). This article presents a high-level framework for NEBA at contaminated sites with subframeworks for natural attenuation (the contaminated reference state), remediation, and ecological restoration alternatives. Primary information gaps related to NEBA include nonmonetary valuation methods, exposure-response models for all stressors, the temporal dynamics of ecological recovery, and optimal strategies for ecological restoration. PMID:15520889

  15. [Impact of Phosphogypsum Wastes on the Wheat Growth and CO2 Emissions and Evaluation of Economic-environmental Benefit].

    PubMed

    Li, Ji; Wu, Hong-sheng; Gao, Zhi-qiu; Shang, Xiao-xia; Zheng, Pei-hui; Yin, Jin; Kakpa, Didier; Ren, Qian-qi; Faustin, Ogou Katchele; Chen, Su-yun; Xu, Ya; Yao, Tong-yan; Ji, Wei; Qian, Jing-shan; Ma, Shi-jie

    2015-08-01

    Phosphogypsum is a phosphorus chemical waste which has not been managed and reused well, resultantly, causing environmental pollution and land-occupation. Phosphogypsum wastes were used as a soil amendment to assess the effect on wheat growth, yield and CO2 emissions from winter wheat fields. Its economic and environmental benefits were analyzed at the same time. The results showed that wheat yield was increased by 37.71% in the treatment of phosphogypsum of 2 100 kg x hm(-2). Compared with the control treatment, throughout the wheat growing season, CO2 emission was accumulatively reduced by 3% in the treatment of phosphogypsum waste of 1050 kg x hm(-2), while reduced by 8% , 10% , and 6% during the jointing stage, heading date and filling period of wheat, respectively; while CO2 emission was accumulatively reduced by 7% in the treatment of phosphogypsum waste of 2 100 kg x hm(-2) throughout the wheat growing season, as reduced by 11% , 4% , and 12% during the reviving wintering stage, heading date and filling period of wheat, respectively. It was better for CO2 emission reduction in the treatment of a larger amount of phosphogypsum waste. In the case of application of phosphogypsum waste residue within a certain range, the emission intensity of CO2 ( CO2 emissions of per unit of fresh weight or CO2 emissions of per unit of yield) , spike length, fresh weight and yield showed a significantly negative correlation--the longer the ear length, the greater fresh weight and yield and the lower the CO2 emissions intensity. As to the carbon trading, phosphogypsum utilization was of high economic and environmental benefits. Compared with the control, the ratio of input to output changed from 1: 8.3 to 1: 10.7, which in the same situation of investment the output could be increased by 28.92% ; phosphogypsum as a greenhouse gas reducing agent in the wheat field, it could decrease the cost and increase the environmental benefit totally about 290 yuan per unit of ton. The

  16. Irrigation water quality and the benefits of implementing good agricultural practices during tomato (Lycopersicum esculentum) production.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Acosta, M; Jiménez, M; Chaidez, C; León-Félix, J; Castro-Del Campo, N

    2014-07-01

    The implementation of good agricultural practices (GAP) from irrigation water to the tomato packaging process enhances the safety of fresh produce and its value throughout the food chain. The aim of the present study was to show that fresh produce farms that apply and enforce GAP could reduce the presence of Salmonella in finished produce. Samples were collected biweekly from six packing houses from the central region of Sinaloa, México, for the isolation of Salmonella spp by the ISO 6579:2002 method, and the isolated strains were serotyped and genotyped by the Kauffmman-White scheme and pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), respectively. Salmonella strains were detected in 13 (36.1 %) irrigation water samples, while only two tomato samples were positive (5.5 %). Eight different serotypes were identified in irrigation water, and Salmonella Oranienburg (34 %) was the most prevalent; however, only Salmonella Agona and Salmonella Weltevreden were present on tomatoes. Salmonella Oranienburg was the most widely dispersed and variable serotype, with 10 different PFGE profiles. Salmonella Weltevreden was isolated from both types of samples, albeit with distinct genetic profiles, implying that the sources of contamination differ. These results confirm the utility of implementing good agricultural practices to reduce Salmonella contamination in irrigation water and the packaging process. PMID:24682661

  17. The future of irrigated agriculture under environmental flow requirements restrictions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pastor, Amandine; Palazzo, Amanda; Havlik, Petr; Kabat, Pavel; Obersteiner, Michael; Ludwig, Fulco

    2016-04-01

    Water is not an infinite resource and demand from irrigation, household and industry is constantly increasing. This study focused on including global water availability including environmental flow requirements with water withdrawal from irrigation and other sectors at a monthly time-step in the GLOBIOM model. This model allows re-adjustment of land-use allocation, crop management, consumption and international trade. The GLOBIOM model induces an endogenous change in water price depending on water supply and demand. In this study, the focus was on how the inclusion of water resources affects land-use and, in particular, how global change will influence repartition of irrigated and rainfed lands at global scale. We used the climate change scenario including a radiative forcing of 8.5 W/m2 (RCP8.5), the socio-economic scenario (SSP2: middle-of-road), and the environmental flow method based on monthly flow allocation (the Variable Monthly Flow method) with high and low restrictions. Irrigation withdrawals were adjusted to a monthly time-step to account for biophysical water limitations at finer time resolution. Our results show that irrigated land might decrease up to 40% on average depending on the choice of EFR restrictions. Several areas were identified as future hot-spots of water stress such as the Mediterranean and Middle-East regions. Other countries were identified to be in safe position in terms of water stress such as North-European countries. Re-allocation of rainfed and irrigated land might be useful information for land-use planners and water managers at an international level to decide on appropriate legislations on climate change mitigation/adaptation when exposure and sensitivity to climate change is high and/or on adaptation measures to face increasing water demand. For example, some countries are likely to adopt measures to increase their water use efficiencies (irrigation system, soil and water conservation practices) to face water shortages, while

  18. Extracting Environmental Benefits from a New Canal in Nicaragua: Lessons from Panama.

    PubMed

    Condit, Richard

    2015-07-01

    Biologists have raised objections to a new canal in Nicaragua, but in this Essay I argue that dire predictions of environmental catastrophe are exaggerated. I present an alternative view based on my research experience in Panama, where Canal operations foster forest conservation. Currently in Nicaragua, the rate of forest loss is so rapid that the canal cannot make it worse. Rather, I contend, adoption of international standards in canal construction could lead to net environmental and social benefits for the country. PMID:26214182

  19. Extracting Environmental Benefits from a New Canal in Nicaragua: Lessons from Panama

    PubMed Central

    Condit, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Biologists have raised objections to a new canal in Nicaragua, but in this Essay I argue that dire predictions of environmental catastrophe are exaggerated. I present an alternative view based on my research experience in Panama, where Canal operations foster forest conservation. Currently in Nicaragua, the rate of forest loss is so rapid that the canal cannot make it worse. Rather, I contend, adoption of international standards in canal construction could lead to net environmental and social benefits for the country. PMID:26214182

  20. Exploratory benefit-cost analysis of environmental controls on hydrothermal energy

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, M.J.; Wells, K.D.; Currie, J.W.; King, M.J.

    1981-02-01

    A study of the value of environmental benefits generated by environmental regulation of hydrothermal sites was initiated to compare these benefits with the estimated costs of regulation. Primary objectives were to 1) evaluate the environmental damages caused by unregulated hydrothermal resource development, 2) use existing environmental and economic data to estimate the dollar value of preventing expected environmental damages at two sites, and 3) compare the benefits and costs of preventing the damages. The sites chosen for analyses were in the Imperial Valley at Heber and Niland, California. Reasons for this choice were 1) there is a high level of commercial interest in developing the Heber known geothermal resource area (KGRA) and the Salton Sea KGRA; 2) the potential for environmental damage is high; 3) existing data bases for these two sites are more comprehensive than at other sites. The primary impacts analyzed were those related to hydrogen sulfide (H/sub 2/S) emissions and those related to disposal of spent hydrothermal brine. (MHR)

  1. Biogeophysical benefits of no-till agriculture for mitigating heat wave impacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davin, Edouard; Seneviratne, Sonia; Ciais, Philippe; Olioso, Albert; Wang, Tao

    2014-05-01

    Changes in agricultural practices are considered a possible option to mitigate climate change[1]. In particular, reducing or suppressing tillage (no-till) may have the potential to sequester carbon in soils, which could help slow global warming[1]. On the other hand, such practices also have a direct effect on regional climate by altering the physical properties of the land surface[2]. These biogeophysical effects, however, are still poorly known. Here we show that no-till management increases the surface albedo of croplands in summer and that the resulting cooling effect is amplified during hot extremes, thus attenuating peak temperatures reached during heatwaves. Using a regional climate model accounting for the observed effects of no-till farming on surface albedo, as well as possible reductions in soil evaporation, we investigate the potential consequences of a full conversion to no-till agriculture in Europe. We find that the summer cooling from cropland albedo increase is strongly amplified during hot summer days, when surface albedo has more impact on the Earth's radiative balance due to clear-sky conditions. The reduced evaporation associated with the crop residue cover tends to counteract the albedo-induced cooling, but during hot days the albedo effect is the dominating factor. For heatwave summer days the local cooling effect gained from no-till practice is of the order of 2 degrees. The identified asymmetric impact of surface albedo change on summer temperature opens new avenues for climate engineering measures targeting high impact events rather than mean climate properties. References: [1] Smith, P., D. Martino, Z. Cai, D. Gwary, H. Janzen, P. Kumar, B. McCarl, S. Ogle, F. O'Mara, C. Rice, B. Scholes, O. Sirotenko (2007): Agriculture. In Climate Change 2007: Mitigation. Contribution of Working Group III to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [B. Metz, O.R. Davidson, P.R. Bosch, R. Dave, L.A. Meyer (eds

  2. Climate benefits of changes in agricultural practices in the context of heat wave mitigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davin, E.; Seneviratne, S. I.; Ciais, P.; Olioso, A.; Wang, T.

    2014-12-01

    About half of the terrestrial biosphere is under direct human influence through land management (i.e., agricultural areas and managed forests). Changing management practices is therefore a promising avenue for climate change mitigation. The mitigation potential arising from changes in land management practices has been mainly evaluated in terms of carbon storage and GHG emissions [2]. On the other hand, these practices can also influence climate by altering the physical properties of the land surface, but these effects have received less attention so far. Here we show that peak temperatures during heat heaves can be attenuated through cropland albedo management [2]. We first present observational evidence that a substantial summer albedo increase can be obtained by switching from conventional to no-till agriculture. Then, using a regional climate model, we investigate the biogeophysical effect of a full conversion to no-till management over Europe. The cooling effect owing to albedo increase under no-till farming appears to be strongly amplified during warm events. This is due to the low cloud cover during these events, thus leading to a more efficient radiative cooling from albedo change. This implies a strong potential of no-till farming to mitigate heat wave impacts. The reduced evaporation associated with the crop residue cover tends to counteract the albedo-induced cooling, but during hot days the albedo effect remains the dominating factor. For heatwave summer days the local cooling effect gained from no-till practice is of the order of 2 degrees. These findings strongly suggest that the biogeophysical effect of management practices should be considered in the design of climate mitigation policies involving land management. References:[1] Smith, P. et al. (2014): Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU). In Climate Change 2014: Mitigation of Climate Change. Contribution of Working Group III to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel

  3. Response of benthic algae to environmental gradients in an agriculturally dominated landscape

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Munn, M.D.; Black, R.W.; Gruber, S.J.

    2002-01-01

    Benthic algal communities were assessed in an agriculturally dominated landscape in the Central Columbia Plateau, Washington, to determine which environmental variables best explained species distributions, and whether algae species optima models were useful in predicting specific water-quality parameters. Land uses in the study area included forest, range, urban, and agriculture. Most of the streams in this region can be characterized as open-channel systems influenced by intensive dryland (nonirrigated) and irrigated agriculture. Algal communities in forested streams were dominated by blue-green algae, with communities in urban and range streams dominated by diatoms. The predominance of either blue-greens or diatoms in agricultural streams varied greatly depending on the specific site. Canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) indicated a strong gradient effect of several key environmental variables on benthic algal community composition. Conductivity and % agriculture were the dominant explanatory variables when all sites (n = 24) were included in the CCA; water velocity replaced conductivity when the CCA included only agricultural and urban sites. Other significant explanatory variables included dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN), orthophosphate (OP), discharge, and precipitation. Regression and calibration models accurately predicted conductivity based on benthic algal communities, with OP having slightly lower predictability. The model for DIN was poor, and therefore may be less useful in this system. Thirty-four algal taxa were identified as potential indicators of conductivity and nutrient conditions, with most indicators being diatoms except for the blue-greens Anabaenasp. and Lyngbya sp.

  4. Environmental challenges threatening the growth of urban agriculture in the United States.

    PubMed

    Wortman, Sam E; Lovell, Sarah Taylor

    2013-09-01

    Urban agriculture, though often difficult to define, is an emerging sector of local food economies in the United States. Although urban and agricultural landscapes are often integrated in countries around the world, the establishment of mid- to large-scale food production in the U.S. urban ecosystem is a relatively new development. Many of the urban agricultural projects in the United States have emerged from social movements and nonprofit organizations focused on urban renewal, education, job training, community development, and sustainability initiatives. Although these social initiatives have traction, critical knowledge gaps exist regarding the science of food production in urban ecosystems. Developing a science-based approach to urban agriculture is essential to the economic and environmental sustainability of the movement. This paper reviews abiotic environmental factors influencing urban cropping systems, including soil contamination and remediation; atmospheric pollutants and altered climatic conditions; and water management, sources, and safety. This review paper seeks to characterize the limited state of the science on urban agricultural systems and identify future research questions most relevant to urban farmers, land-use planners, and environmental consultants. PMID:24216408

  5. Regional variations in the health, environmental, and climate benefits of wind and solar generation.

    PubMed

    Siler-Evans, Kyle; Azevedo, Inês Lima; Morgan, M Granger; Apt, Jay

    2013-07-16

    When wind or solar energy displace conventional generation, the reduction in emissions varies dramatically across the United States. Although the Southwest has the greatest solar resource, a solar panel in New Jersey displaces significantly more sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particulate matter than a panel in Arizona, resulting in 15 times more health and environmental benefits. A wind turbine in West Virginia displaces twice as much carbon dioxide as the same turbine in California. Depending on location, we estimate that the combined health, environmental, and climate benefits from wind or solar range from $10/MWh to $100/MWh, and the sites with the highest energy output do not yield the greatest social benefits in many cases. We estimate that the social benefits from existing wind farms are roughly 60% higher than the cost of the Production Tax Credit, an important federal subsidy for wind energy. However, that same investment could achieve greater health, environmental, and climate benefits if it were differentiated by region. PMID:23798431

  6. Environmental Effects of Agricultural Practices - Summary of Workshop Held on June 14-16, 2005

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    U.S. Geological Survey

    2006-01-01

    A meeting between the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and its partners was held June 14-16, 2005, in Denver, CO, to discuss science issues and needs related to agricultural practices. The goals of the meeting were to learn about the (1) effects of agricultural practices on the environment and (2) tools for identifying and quantifying those effects. Achieving these goals required defining the environmental concerns, developing scientific actions to address assessment of environmental effects, and creating collaborations to identify future research requirements and technical gaps. Five areas of concern were discussed-emerging compounds; water availability; genetically modified organisms; effects of conservation practices on ecosystems; and data, methods, and tools for assessing effects of agricultural practices.

  7. Making the Case for Green Building: Cataloging the Benefits of Environmentally Responsible Design & Construction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Alex

    2008-01-01

    To those entrenched in the green building world, the benefits seem obvious. Why would anyone choose to build in a way that isn't comfortable, healthy, energy efficient, and environmentally responsible? Even within a single college or university project, different team members often have different reasons for promoting a green agenda. Architects…

  8. 78 FR 37568 - Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Proposed Strategies To Benefit Native Species by...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-21

    ...The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) as the lead Federal agency, with the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation as a Cooperating Agency, intends to file a draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) titled: Proposed Strategies to Benefit Native Species by Reducing the Abundance of Lake Trout in Flathead Lake, Montana. This notice also announces that the DEIS is now......

  9. The Role of Agricultural Consultants in New Zealand in Environmental Extension

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Botha, Neels; Coutts, Jeff; Roth, Hein

    2008-01-01

    The aim of this study was to understand the role that agricultural consultants in New Zealand were undertaking in the Research, Development and Extension (RD&E) system--and in particular in relation to environmental extension. New Zealand does not have a public extension service and hence there is a strong reliance on consultants and regional…

  10. Determination of arsenic and selenium in environmental and agricultural samples by hydride generation atomic absorption spectrometry

    SciTech Connect

    Hershey, J.W.; Oostdyk, T.S.; Keliher, P.N.

    1988-11-01

    Agricultural and environmental samples are digested with acid, and arsenic and selenium are determined using hydride generation atomic absorption spectrometry. Interelement interferences are eliminated by high acid concentrations or cation-exchange resins. Agreement with standard reference material is excellent. The technique is also applied to actual samples.

  11. The environmental consequences of nuclear war (SCOPE 28), Vol. 2: Ecological, agricultural, and human effects

    SciTech Connect

    Harwell, M.A.; Hutchinson, T.C.

    1986-01-01

    Offerred in this book is an appraisal of the possible environmental consequences of nuclear war. It presents a consensus among leading scientists of the effects on climate, ecosystems, and food supply. Volume 2 reviews ecosystems structure and function relevant to nuclear war effects, plant and animal responses and recovery, agricultural productivity, vulnerability of world food production and storage, estimated population affected, and research needs.

  12. Management technologies can reduce the environmental risk of pesticides in agricultural production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Pesticide use in agriculture, the potential risk posed by pesticides when they are transported beyond the intended target, and their effects on human and environmental health have been of public concern for many years. We utilized 5 years of field data, quantifying pesticide transport with runoff fr...

  13. Can foraging behavior of Criollo cattle help increase agricultural production and reduce environmental impacts in the arid Southwest?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Longterm Agroecosystem Research Network (LTAR) was formed to help the nation’s agricultural systems simultaneously increase production and reduce environmental impacts. Eighteen networked sites are conducting a Common Experiment to understand the environmental and economic problems associated wi...

  14. Economical and environmental implications of solid waste compost applications to agricultural fields in Punjab, Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Qazi, M Akram; Akram, M; Ahmad, N; Artiola, Janick F; Tuller, M

    2009-09-01

    Application of municipal solid waste compost (MSWC) to agricultural soils is becoming an increasingly important global practice to enhance and sustain soil organic matter (SOM) and fertility levels. Potential risks associated with heavy metals and phosphorus accumulations in surface soils may be minimized with integrated nutrient management strategies that utilize MSWC together with mineral fertilizers. To explore the economic feasibility of MSWC applications, nutrient management plans were developed for rice-wheat and cotton-wheat cropping systems within the Punjab region of Pakistan. Three-year field trials were conducted to measure yields and to determine the economic benefits using three management strategies and two nutrient doses. Management strategies included the application of mineral fertilizers as the sole nutrient source and application of mineral fertilizers in combination with MSWC with and without pesticide/herbicide treatments. Fertilizer doses were either based on standard N, P and K recommendations or on measured site-specific soil plant available phosphorus (PAP) levels. It was found that combining MSWC and mineral fertilizer applications based on site-specific PAP levels with the use of pesticides and herbicides is an economically and environmentally viable management strategy. Results show that incorporation of MSWC improved soil physical properties such as bulk density and penetration resistance. The PAP levels in the surface layer increased by the end of the trials relative to the initial status. No potential risks of heavy metal (Zn, Cd, Cr, Pb and Ni) accumulation were observed. Treatments comprised of MSWC and mineral fertilizer adjusted to site-specific PAP levels and with common pest management showed highest cumulative yields. A basic economic analysis revealed a significantly higher cumulative net profit and value-to-cost ratio (VCR) for all site-specific doses. PMID:19501499

  15. An objective approach to marginal benefit functions for environmental flows: an example for fluvial systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perona, P.; Burlando, P.

    2009-12-01

    Environmental flows can result from the economical competition for water allocation between traditional and non-traditional water uses. This requires the definition of convenient benefit functions (bf) associated with the use of the resource. Since the use of water by the riparian ecosystem is an intangible good, common ways based for instance on the “willingness to pay” have the dramatic weakness of not being objective with regard to the environmental rights. That is, water withdrawal from a given stream environment would depend on the importance and, in turn, on the economical value that people assign to this environment. In this work we discuss a possible objective criterion to establish benefit functions for the environmental uses of the water resource. Our approach is based on studying the optimal water allocation between the users as resulting from marginal economic analysis. That is, we show that the parameters of the marginal demand curve for the riparian ecosystem are intrinsically defined by knowing: (a) the ecological status of the riverine system in pristine conditions, and (b) the marginal benefit function of the potential competitor (e.g., exploitation activity). We solve analytically the water allocation problem for the simple case of water withdrawal from a fluvial system. We show the link between the parameters of the marginal benefit functions and the minimal environmental flow arising from classic engineering analysis, as well as their ecological meaning. This approach allows to restore a more natural variability of the streamflow regime in impounded reaches, to the cost of a profit reduction for the resource exploitation. However, on the long term, the overall idea is that the benefit for having preserved more natural environmental flow conditions since exploitation began would balance the future cost for potential restoration of the riverine corridor and the missing revenues.

  16. A Multi-module Approach to Calculation of Oyster ( Crassostrea virginica) Environmental Benefits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerco, Carl F.

    2015-08-01

    Environmental benefits are one of the motivations for management restoration of depleted bivalve populations. We describe a series of linked modules for benefits calculation. The modules include: oyster ( Crassostrea virginica) bioenergetics, materials transport via the tidal prism, and benefits quantification. Quantified benefits include carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus removal and shell production. The modules are demonstrated through application to the Great Wicomico River, a tributary of Chesapeake Bay, USA. Oysters on seven reefs (total area 2.8 × 105 m2) are calculated to remove 15.2, 6.2, and 0.2 tons per annum of carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus, respectively, from the Great Wicomico. Oyster mortality contributes 108 tons per annum dry weight shell to the reefs.

  17. The Impacts and Economic Costs of Climate Change in Agriculture and the Costs and Benefits of Adaptation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iglesias, A.; Quiroga, S.; Garrote, L.; Cunningham, R.

    2012-04-01

    This paper provides monetary estimates of the effects of agricultural adaptation to climate change in Europe. The model computes spatial crop productivity changes as a response to climate change linking biophysical and socioeconomic components. It combines available data sets of crop productivity changes under climate change (Iglesias et al 2011, Ciscar et al 2011), statistical functions of productivity response to water and nitrogen inputs, catchment level water availability, and environmental policy scenarios. Future global change scenarios are derived from several socio-economic futures of representative concentration pathways and regional climate models. The economic valuation is conducted by using GTAP general equilibrium model. The marginal productivity changes has been used as an input for the economic general equilibrium model in order to analyse the economic impact of the agricultural changes induced by climate change in the world. The study also includes the analysis of an adaptive capacity index computed by using the socio-economic results of GTAP. The results are combined to prioritize agricultural adaptation policy needs in Europe.

  18. Antibiotics Resistance in Rhizobium: Type, Process, Mechanism and Benefit for Agriculture.

    PubMed

    Naamala, Judith; Jaiswal, Sanjay K; Dakora, Felix D

    2016-06-01

    The use of high-quality rhizobial inoculants on agricultural legumes has contributed substantially to the N economy of farming systems through inputs from biological nitrogen fixation (BNF). Large populations of symbiotically effective rhizobia should be available in the rhizosphere for symbiotic BNF with host plants. The rhizobial populations should also be able to compete and infect host plants. However, the rhizosphere comprises large populations of different microorganisms. Some of these microorganisms naturally produce antibiotics which are lethal to susceptible rhizobial populations in the soil. Therefore, intrinsic resistance to antibiotics is a desirable trait for the rhizobial population. It increases the rhizobia's chances of growth, multiplication and persistence in the soil. With a large population of rhizobia in the soil, infectivity of host plants and the subsequent BNF efficiency can be guaranteed. This review, therefore, puts together findings by various researchers on antibiotic resistance in bacteria with the main emphasis on rhizobia. It describes the different modes of action of different antibiotics, the types of antibiotic resistance exhibited by rhizobia, the mechanisms of acquisition of antibiotic resistance in rhizobia and the levels of tolerance of different rhizobial species to different antibiotics. PMID:26897128

  19. Cost-benefit evaluation of a decentralized water system for wastewater reuse and environmental protection.

    PubMed

    Chen, R; Wang, X C

    2009-01-01

    This paper proposed a net benefit value (NBV) model for cost-benefit evaluation of wastewater treatment and reuse projects, and attention was mainly paid to decentralized systems which are drawing wide interests all over the world especially in the water-deficient countries and regions. In the NBV model, all the factors related to project costs are monetary ones which can be calculated by using traditional methods, while many of the factors related to project benefits are non-monetary ones which need sophisticated methods for monetization. In this regard, the authors elaborated several methods for monetization of the benefits from wastewater discharge reduction, local environment improvement, and human health protection. The proposed model and methods were applied for the cost-benefit evaluation of a decentralized water reclamation and reuse project in a newly developed residential area in Xi'an, China. The system with dual-pipe collection and grey water treatment and reuse was found to be economically ineligible (NBV > 0) when all the treated water is reused for artificial pond replenishment, gardening and other non-potable purposes by taking into account the benefit of water saving. As environmental benefits are further considered, the economic advantage of the project is more significant. PMID:19403964

  20. Organic Farming Benefits Local Plant Diversity in Vineyard Farms Located in Intensive Agricultural Landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nascimbene, Juri; Marini, Lorenzo; Paoletti, Maurizio G.

    2012-05-01

    The majority of research on organic farming has considered arable and grassland farming systems in Central and Northern Europe, whilst only a few studies have been carried out in Mediterranean agro-systems, such as vineyards, despite their economic importance. The main aim of the study was to test whether organic farming enhances local plant species richness in both crop and non-crop areas of vineyard farms located in intensive conventional landscapes. Nine conventional and nine organic farms were selected in an intensively cultivated region (i.e. no gradient in landscape composition) in northern Italy. In each farm, vascular plants were sampled in one vineyard and in two non-crop linear habitats, grass strips and hedgerows, adjacent to vineyards and therefore potentially influenced by farming. We used linear mixed models to test the effect of farming, and species longevity (annual vs. perennial) separately for the three habitat types. In our intensive agricultural landscapes organic farming promoted local plant species richness in vineyard fields, and grassland strips while we found no effect for linear hedgerows. Differences in species richness were not associated to differences in species composition, indicating that similar plant communities were hosted in vineyard farms independently of the management type. This negative effect of conventional farming was probably due to the use of herbicides, while mechanical operations and mowing regime did not differ between organic and conventional farms. In grassland strips, and only marginally in vineyards, we found that the positive effect of organic farming was more pronounced for perennial than annual species.

  1. Assessing the benefits of OHER (Office of Health and Environmental Research) research: Three case studies

    SciTech Connect

    Nesse, R.J.; Callaway, J.M.; Englin, J.E.; Klan, M.S.; Nicholls, A.K.; Serot, D.E.

    1987-09-01

    This research was undertaken to estimate the societal benefits and costs of selected past research performed for the Office of Health and Environmental Research (OHER) of the US Department of Energy (DOE). Three case studies of representative OHER and DOE research were performed. One of these, the acid rain case study, includes research conducted elsewhere in DOE. The other two cases were the OHER marine research program and the development of high-purity germanium that is used in radiation detectors. The acid rain case study looked at the research benefits and costs of furnace sorbent injection and duct injection, technologies that might reduce acid deposition precursors. Both appear to show benefits in excess of costs. We examined in detail one of the OHER marine research program's accomplishments - the increase in environmental information used by the Outer Continental Shelf leasing program to manage bidding for off-shore oil drilling. The results of an econometric model show that environmental information of the type supported by OHER is unequivocally linked to government and industry leasing decisions. The germanium case study indicated that the benefits of germanium radiation detectors were significant.

  2. Climate Change Impacts on US Agriculture and the Benefits of Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monier, E.; Sue Wing, I.; Stern, A.

    2014-12-01

    As contributors to the US EPA's Climate Impacts and Risk Assessment (CIRA) project, we present empirically-based projections of climate change impacts on the yields of five major US crops. Our analysis uses a 15-member ensemble of climate simulations using the MIT Integrated Global System Model (IGSM) linked to the NCAR Community Atmosphere Model (CAM), forced by 3 emissions scenarios (a "business as usual" reference scenario and two stabilization scenarios at 4.5W/m2 and 3.7 W/m2 by 2100), quantify the agricultural impacts avoided due to greenhouse gas emission reductions. Our innovation is the coupling of climate model outputs with empirical estimates of the long-run relationship between crop yields and temperature, precipitation and soil moisture derived from the co-variation between yields and weather across US counties over the last 50 years. Our identifying assumption is that since farmers' planting, management and harvesting decisions are based on land quality and expectations of weather, yields and meteorological variables share a long-run equilibrium relationship. In any given year, weather shocks cause yields to diverge from their expected long-run values, prompting farmers to revise their long-run expectations. We specify a dynamic panel error correction model (ECM) that statistically distinguishes these two processes. The ECM is estimated for maize, wheat, soybeans, sorghum and cotton using longitudinal data on production and harvested area for ~1,100 counties from 1948-2010, in conjunction with spatial fields of 3-hourly temperature, precipitation and soil moisture from the Global Land Data Assimilation System (GLDAS) forcing and output files, binned into annual counts of exposure over the growing season and mapped to county centroids. For scenarios of future warming the identical method was used to calculate counties' current (1986-2010) and future (2036-65 and 2086-2110) distributions of simulated 3-hourly growing season temperature, precipitation

  3. Environmental effects of growing short-rotation woody crops on former agricultural lands

    SciTech Connect

    Tolbert, V.R.; Thornton, F.C.; Joslin, J.D.

    1997-10-01

    Field-scale studies in the Southeast have been addressing the environmental effects of converting agricultural lands to biomass crop production since 1994. Erosion, surface water quality and quantity and subsurface movement of water and nutrients from woody crops, switchgrass and agricultural crops are being compared. Nutrient cycling, soil physical changes and crop productivity are also being monitored at the three sites. Maximum sediment losses occurred in the spring and fall. Losses were greater from sweetgum planted without a cover crop than with a cover crop. Nutrient losses of N and P in runoff and subsurface water occurred primarily after spring fertilizer application.

  4. South America's neoliberal agricultural frontiers: places of environmental sacrifice or conservation opportunity?

    PubMed

    Brannstrom, Christian

    2009-05-01

    Neoliberal agricultural frontiers, defined as export-oriented farming areas motivated more by global demand and land privatization than by government subsidies, present at least two major challenges for environmental researchers: estimating land change and understanding governance types and outcomes. Environmental governance, the "filter" between human and biophysical systems, is considered in terms of two models in light of empirical evidence from a neoliberal frontier in the Brazilian Cerrado (savanna) ecoregion. Land-change analysis indicates that agricultural land uses increased from 12% of the study region in 1986 to 44% in 2000 and 55% in 2005, with a corresponding loss of native Cerrado. A prominent farming organization formed in 1990 has participated in or led several environmental policy initiatives. Evidence of both governance models is found, and dilemmas facing environmental activists and managers, as well as the farming sector, are presented. For organizations representing large commercial farmers, compliance with environmental regulations may be seen as both a cost to be borne by the farming sector and as a means to establish environmental credentials. Suggestions are made for future longitudinal work on compliance, information, agenda-setting, and discursive strategies of nonstate actors in neoliberal frontiers. PMID:19580031

  5. School Indoor Environmental Quality Assessments and Interventions: Benefits of Effective Partnerships in California

    SciTech Connect

    Shendell, Derek G.; Apte, Michael G.; Kim, Janice; Smorodinsky, Svetlana

    2002-07-01

    Public, private, government, and university stakeholders have focused increasing attention on children's environmental health. Priority areas have been healthy school environments including indoor air and environmental quality (IEQ); susceptibilities of children to environmental factors and associated illness; and, understanding exposure to biological, chemical, and physical agents. As multidisciplinary teams, studies and intervention demonstrations in California public schools were conducted. A common theme among them was a ''partnership,'' the collaboration between stakeholders from the aforementioned sectors. Federal funding and local bond measures for planning, maintenance, and modernization of school facilities have recently been authorized. Therefore, beneficial ''partnerships'' should be established to conduct needed IEQ, environmental health, and productivity research, development and demonstration. This commentary describes benefits for stakeholders and five strategies for future effective collaborations.

  6. Assessment of private economic benefits and positive environmental externalities of tea plantation in China.

    PubMed

    Xue, Hui; Ren, Xiaoyi; Li, Shiyu; Wu, Xu; Cheng, Hao; Xu, Bin; Gu, Baojing; Yang, Guofu; Peng, Changhui; Ge, Ying; Chang, Jie

    2013-10-01

    Tea plantations are rapidly expanding in China and other countries in the tropical and subtropical zones, driven by relatively high private economic benefit. However, the impact of tea plantations on the regional environment, including ecosystem services and disservices are unclear. In this study, we developed an assessment framework for determining the private economic benefits and environmental externalities (the algebraic sum of the regulating services and disservices) of tea plantations in China. Our results showed that tea plantations provided private economic benefits of 5,652 yuan ha(-1) year(-1) (7.6 yuan = 1 USD in 2007) for tea farmers, plus positive environmental externalities of 6,054 yuan ha(-1) year(-1) for the society. The environmental externalities were calculated as the sum of the value of four regulating services, including carbon sequestration (392 yuan ha(-1) year(-1)); soil retention (72 yuan ha(-1) year(-1)); soil fertility protection (3,189 yuan ha(-1) year(-1)) and water conservation (2,685 yuan ha(-1) year(-1)), and three disservices, including CO2 emission (-39 yuan ha(-1) year(-1)), N2O emission (-137 yuan ha(-1) year(-1)) and nonpoint source pollution (-108 yuan ha(-1) year(-1)). Before the private optimal level, the positive environmental externalities can be maintained by private economic benefits; if a social optimal level is required, subsidies from government are necessary. PMID:23604726

  7. Automotive recycling in the United States: Energy conservation and environmental benefits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomykala, J. A.; Jody, B. J.; Daniels, E. J.; Spangenberger, J. S.

    2007-11-01

    The production and use of polymers has been growing and that trend is expected to continue. Likewise, the production of metals from ores is on the rise because of increasing demand. Recycling polymers and residual metals can result in significant energy savings and environmental benefits including a reduction in CO2 emissions. This article describes recycling options for the polymers and metals in end-of-life vehicles.

  8. Environmental factors that influence the location of crop agriculture in the conterminous United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Baker, Nancy T.; Capel, Paul D.

    2011-01-01

    Most crops are grown on land with shallow slope where the temperature, precipitation, and soils are favorable. In areas that are too steep, wet, or dry, landscapes have been modified to allow cultivation. Some of the limitations of the environmental factors that determine the location of agriculture can be overcome through modifications, but others cannot. On a larger-than-field scale, agricultural modifications commonly influence water availability through irrigation and (or) drainage and soil fertility and (or) organic-matter content through amendments such as manure, commercial fertilizer and lime. In general, it is not feasible to modify the other environmental factors, soil texture, soil depth, soil mineralogy, temperature, and terrain at large scales.

  9. Comprehensive evaluation of environmental and economic benefits of China's urban underground transportation construction projects.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiaobin; Chen, Zhilong; Guo, Dongjun

    2015-07-01

    Urban underground transportation projects are introduced to address problems of scarce green land and traffic pollution. As construction of urban underground transportation is still in its infancy, there is no definite quantitative measurement on whether the construction is beneficial and what influences it will place on the region in China. This study intends to construct a comprehensive evaluation method for evaluating social, economic and environmental benefits of urban underground transportation projects and proposes the concept, role and principle for evaluation of environmental and economic benefits. It figures out relationship between the environment and factors of city development. It also summarizes three relevant factors, including transportation, biophysics and social economy, and works out indicators to evaluate the influence of urban underground transportation construction. Based on Contingent Valuation Method (CVM), Cost of Illness Approach (CIA), Human Capital Approach (HCA), this paper constructs 13 monetization calculation models for social, economic and environmental benefits in response to seven aspects, namely, reducing noise pollution and air pollution, using land efficiently, improving traffic safety, reducing traffic congestion, saving shipping time and minimizing transportation costs. PMID:26387347

  10. SCOPE 28: Environmental consequences of nuclear war. Volume II. Ecological and agricultural effects

    SciTech Connect

    Harwell, M.A.; Hutchinson, T.C.; Cropper, W.P. Jr.; Harwell, C.C.; Grover, H.D.

    1985-01-01

    This book presents papers on the environmental and biological impacts of nuclear weapons. Topics considered include ecological principles relevant to nuclear war, the vulnerability of ecological systems to the climatic effects of nuclear war, additional potential effects of nuclear war on ecological systems, the potential effects of nuclear war on agricultural productivity, food availability after nuclear war, experiences and extrapolations from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the integration of effects on human populations.

  11. Which environmental problems get policy attention? Examining energy and agricultural sector policies in Sweden

    SciTech Connect

    Engstroem, Rebecka Nilsson, Mans Finnveden, Goeran

    2008-05-15

    Not all environmental problems get the same level of policy attention. An interesting question is thus why certain aspects receive attention and others do not. This paper studies the level of policy attention given to different environmental aspects in agriculture and energy policy in Sweden and explores empirically some factors that can explain the level of attention. The first step was to explore the link between environmental issue characteristics and the level of policy attention. The level of policy attention was measured through a content analysis of Swedish government bills. The results from the content analysis are clear and stable over the studied time period. In the agriculture sector biodiversity and toxicity are in focus whereas in the energy sector climate change and resources are given the attention. Besides these aspects, the attention is limited. These results were compared with the results from sector-wide environmental assessments of the same sectors. These assessments were based on hybrid input-output analysis and life cycle assessment methodologies. A main finding from the study is that issue importance is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for policy attention. Other explanations are needed to understand which environmental issues get attention in sectoral policy. Our assessment showed that while the level of knowledge does not provide an explanation, the presence of strong and well-organised stakeholders within the sector, with an interest in having a certain issue on the agenda, might be decisive for issue attention. Path dependency and limited attention capacity are other important factors.

  12. Strategic Environmental Assessment of Greenhouse Gas Mitigation Options in the Canadian Agricultural Sector

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noble, Bram F.; Christmas, Lisa M.

    2008-01-01

    This article presents a methodological framework for strategic environmental assessment (SEA) application. The overall objective is to demonstrate SEA as a systematic and structured policy, plan, and program (PPP) decision support tool. In order to accomplish this objective, a stakeholder-based SEA application to greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation policy options in Canadian agriculture is presented. Using a mail-out impact assessment exercise, agricultural producers and nonproducers from across the Canadian prairie region were asked to evaluate five competing GHG mitigation options against 13 valued environmental components (VECs). Data were analyzed using multi-criteria and exploratory analytical techniques. The results suggest considerable variation in perceived impacts and GHG mitigation policy preferences, suggesting that a blanket policy approach to GHG mitigation will create gainers and losers based on soil type and associate cropping and on-farm management practices. It is possible to identify a series of regional greenhouse gas mitigation programs that are robust, socially meaningful, and operationally relevant to both agricultural producers and policy decision makers. The assessment demonstrates the ability of SEA to address, in an operational sense, environmental problems that are characterized by conflicting interests and competing objectives and alternatives. A structured and systematic SEA methodology provides the necessary decision support framework for the consideration of impacts, and allows for PPPs to be assessed based on a much broader set of properties, objectives, criteria, and constraints whereas maintaining rigor and accountability in the assessment process.

  13. Siting is a constraint to realize environmental benefits from carbon capture and storage.

    PubMed

    Sekar, Ashok; Williams, Eric; Chester, Mikhail

    2014-10-01

    Carbon capture and storage (CCS) for coal power plants reduces onsite carbon dioxide emissions, but affects other air emissions on and offsite. This research assesses the net societal benefits and costs of Monoethanolamine (MEA) CCS, valuing changes in emissions of CO2, SO2, NOX, NH3 and particulate matter (PM), including those in the supply chain. Geographical variability and stochastic uncertainty for 407 coal power plant locations in the U.S. are analyzed. The results show that the net environmental benefits and costs of MEA CCS depend critically on location. For a few favorable sites of both power plant and upstream processes, CCS realizes a net benefit (benefit-cost ratio >1) if the social cost of carbon exceeds $51/ton. For much of the U.S. however, the social cost of carbon must be much higher to realize net benefits from CCS, up to a maximum of $910/ton. While the social costs of carbon are uncertain, typical estimates are in the range of $32-220 per ton, much lower than the breakeven value for many potential CCS locations. Increased impacts upstream from the power plant can dramatically change the social acceptability of CCS and needs further consideration and analysis. PMID:25187199

  14. Net environmental benefit: introducing a new LCA approach on wastewater treatment systems.

    PubMed

    Godin, D; Bouchard, C; Vanrolleghem, P A

    2012-01-01

    Life cycle assessment (LCA) allows evaluating the potential environmental impacts of a product or a service in relation to its function and over its life cycle. In past LCAs applied to wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), the system function definition has received little attention despite its great importance. This has led to some limitations in LCA results interpretation. A new methodology to perform LCA on WWTPs is proposed to avoid those limitations. It is based on net environmental benefit (NEB) evaluation and requires assessing the potential impact of releasing wastewater without and with treatment besides assessing the impact of the WWTP's life cycle. The NEB allows showing the environmental trade-offs between avoided impact due to wastewater treatment and induced impact by the WWTP's life cycle. NEB is compared with a standard LCA through the case study of a small municipal WWTP consisting of facultative aerated lagoons. The NEB and standard LCA show similar results for impact categories solely related to the WWTP's life cycle but differ in categories where wastewater treatment environmental benefit is accounted for as NEB considers influent wastewater quality whereas standard LCA does not. PMID:22508125

  15. Economic and environmental benefits of product substitution for organic solvents. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    O'Connor, S.C.

    1991-05-01

    U.S. Army installations require solvents for effective maintenance and equipment refurbishing operations. Spent solvent generation has become a significant environmental and economic concern. Of increasing concern are toxic air emissions, threshold limit values, and increasing restriction on land disposal. Coupled with these environmental issues is the rising cost of both waste disposal and new solvent purchase. This manuscript evaluates the environmental protection and economic benefits of substituting aqueous terpene-based cleaners for petroleum-based Stoddard solvent, currently used in parts cleaning. With characteristics such as low volatility, biodegradability, and reduction of land disposal, terpene cleaners have become the favored substitution alternative. This research showed that implementing terpene cleaner substitution for Stoddard solvent requires a site-specific study of each installation which will include waste recycling, disposal of sludge and rinse water, landfills, contamination of soils and economic analysis.

  16. Investigating the Environmental Effects of Agriculture Practices on Natural Resources: Scientific Contributions of the U.S. Geological Survey to Enhance the Management of Agricultural Landscapes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    U.S. Geological Survey

    2007-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) enhances and protects the quality of life in the United States by advancing scientific knowledge to facilitate effective management of hydrologic, biologic, and geologic resources. Results of selected USGS research and monitoring projects in agricultural landscapes are presented in this Fact Sheet. Significant environmental and social issues associated with agricultural production include changes in the hydrologic cycle; introduction of toxic chemicals, nutrients, and pathogens; reduction and alteration of wildlife habitats; and invasive species. Understanding environmental consequences of agricultural production is critical to minimize unintended environmental consequences. The preservation and enhancement of our natural resources can be achieved by measuring the success of improved management practices and by adjusting conservation policies as needed to ensure long-term protection.

  17. Cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit analysis of BMPs in controlling agricultural nonpoint source pollution in China based on the SWAT model.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ruimin; Zhang, Peipei; Wang, Xiujuan; Wang, Jiawei; Yu, Wenwen; Shen, Zhenyao

    2014-12-01

    Best management practices (BMPs) have been widely used in managing agricultural nonpoint source pollution (ANSP) at the watershed level. Most BMPs are related to land use, tillage management, and fertilizer levels. In total, seven BMP scenarios (Reforest1, Reforest2, No Tillage, Contour tillage, and fertilizer level 1-4) that are related to these three factors were estimated in this study. The objectives were to investigate the effectiveness and cost-benefit of these BMPs on ANSP reduction in a large tributary of the Three Gorges Reservoir (TGR) in China, which are based on the simulation results of the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) model. The results indicated that reforestation was the most economically efficient of all BMPs, and its net benefits were up to CNY 4.36×10(7) years(-1) (about USD 7.08×10(6) years(-1)). Regarding tillage practices, no tillage practice was more environmentally friendly than other tillage practices, and contour tillage was more economically efficient. Reducing the local fertilizer level to 0.8-fold less than that of 2010 can yield a satisfactory environmental and economic efficiency. Reforestation and fertilizer management were more effective in reducing total phosphorus (TP), whereas tillage management was more effective in reducing total nitrogen (TN). When CNY 10,000 (about USD 162) was applied to reforestation, no tillage, contour tillage, and an 0.8-fold reduction in the fertilizer level, then annual TN load can be reduced by 0.08, 0.16, 0.11, and 0.04 t and annual TP load can be reduced by 0.04, 0.02, 0.01 and 0.03 t, respectively. The cost-benefit (CB) ratios of the BMPs were as follows: reforestation (207 %) > contour tillage (129 %) > no tillage (114 %) > fertilizer management (96 and 89 %). The most economical and effective BMPs can be designated as follows: BMP1 (returning arable land with slopes greater than 25° to forests and those lands with slopes of 15-25° to orchards), BMP2 (implementing no tillage

  18. Environmental sustainability in an agricultural development project: a system dynamics approach.

    PubMed

    Saysel, Ali Kerem; Barlas, Yaman; Yenigün, Orhan

    2002-03-01

    Regional agricultural projects based on water resource development have many potential impacts on social and natural environments. In this research, potential long-term environmental problems of the Southeastern Anatolian Project (GAP) related to water resources, land use, land degradation, agricultural pollution and demography are analysed from a systems perspective. The analysis focuses on the totality of environmental, social and economic issues. For this purpose, a system dynamics simulation model (GAPSIM) has been developed as an experimental platform for policy analysis. GAPSIM was validated, first 'structurally', using the tests suggested by the literature and then the model 'behaviour' was tested and calibrated with respect to available data. The reference behaviour of GAPSIM reveals that, as the irrigated lands are developed, GAP faces significant water scarcity because of the increased intensity of cotton, the crop with the highest demands for water. Simulation results also indicate that two key environmental factors, pesticide and fertilizer consumption may reach undesirable levels. Alternative irrigation water release strategies, development rates of irrigated fields and farm rotation practices appear as important policy tools in achieving long-term environmental sustainability. GAPSIM promises to be not only a useful laboratory for policy makers of GAP, but also a useful generic structure applicable to other similar regional development projects. PMID:12040958

  19. Environmental indicators to assess the risk of diffuse Nitrogen losses from agriculture.

    PubMed

    Buczko, Uwe; Kuchenbuch, Rolf O

    2010-05-01

    Diffuse Nitrogen (N) loss from agriculture is a major factor contributing to increased concentrations of nitrate in surface and groundwater, and of N(2)O and NH(3) in the atmosphere. Different approaches to assess diffuse N losses from agriculture have been proposed, among other direct measurements of N loads in leachate and groundwater, and physically-based modelling. However, both these approaches have serious drawbacks and are awkward to use at a routine base. N loss indicators (NLIs) are environmental management tools for assessing the risk of diffuse N losses from agricultural fields. They range in complexity from simple proxy variables to elaborate systems of algebraic equations. Here we present an overview of NLIs developed in different parts of the world. NLIs can be categorized into source-based, transport-based, and composite approaches. Several issues demand more attention in future studies. (1) Is incorporation of leaching losses and gaseous losses into one single NLI warranted? (2) Is it sufficient to restrict the focus on the rooted soil zone without considering the vadose zone and aquifer? (3) Calibration and validation of NLIs using field data of N loss seems not sufficient. Comparisons of several different NLIs with each other needs more attention; however, the different scaling of NLIs impedes comparability. (4) Sensitivity of input parameters with regard to the final NLI output needs more attention in future studies. (5) For environmental management purposes, factors addressing management decision by farmers deserve more attention. PMID:20306042

  20. Confronting reality in strategic environmental assessment in Slovenia — Costs and benefits

    SciTech Connect

    Kontić, Branko Dermol, Urška

    2015-01-15

    We enlarge on the viewpoint published in the Environmental Impact Assessment Review in 2012 — A viewpoint on the approval context of strategic environmental assessments. Additional alerts concerning the procedural ineffectiveness of the strategic environmental assessment (SEA) process from the cost–benefit point of view are advanced. The major contribution to the long lasting, costly SEA processes, comes from ultraistic treatment of Natura 2000. The case study deals with a plan for constructing a traffic bypass around Škofljica, a town near Ljubljana. Based on their conclusions the authors propose that the following elements of the SEA procedure should be improved and optimised: –CBA for SEA should become a regular component when measuring its effectiveness. –Concretisation of expected SEA inputs to the plan should clarify its role at the earliest stage of the process. –SEA should contribute interactively to the optimisation of alternatives; cost–benefit analysis of the SEA process could support this process. –Nature protection interest should be confronted and balanced with wider development interests as formulated in the plan and should not be applied in absolute terms (e.g. Natura 2000). - Highlights: • SEA in Slovenia is ineffective and costly • SEA serves fundamentalism of nature protection through the Natura 2000 system • SEA does not support optimization and improvement of development projects.

  1. Life cycle assessment to evaluate the environmental impact of biochar implementation in conservation agriculture in Zambia.

    PubMed

    Sparrevik, Magnus; Field, John L; Martinsen, Vegard; Breedveld, Gijs D; Cornelissen, Gerard

    2013-02-01

    Biochar amendment to soil is a potential technology for carbon storage and climate change mitigation. It may, in addition, be a valuable soil fertility enhancer for agricultural purposes in sandy and/or weathered soils. A life cycle assessment including ecological, health and resource impacts has been conducted for field sites in Zambia to evaluate the overall impacts of biochar for agricultural use. The life cycle impacts from conservation farming using cultivation growth basins and precision fertilization with and without biochar addition were in the present study compared to conventional agricultural methods. Three different biochar production methods were evaluated: traditional earth-mound kilns, improved retort kilns, and micro top-lit updraft (TLUD) gasifier stoves. The results confirm that the use of biochar in conservation farming is beneficial for climate change mitigation purposes. However, when including health impacts from particle emissions originating from biochar production, conservation farming plus biochar from earth-mound kilns generally results in a larger negative effect over the whole life cycle than conservation farming without biochar addition. The use of cleaner technologies such as retort kilns or TLUDs can overcome this problem, mainly because fewer particles and less volatile organic compounds, methane and carbon monoxide are emitted. These results emphasize the need for a holistic view on biochar use in agricultural systems. Of special importance is the biochar production technique which has to be evaluated from both environmental/climate, health and social perspectives. PMID:23272937

  2. Neolithic agriculture, freshwater resources and rapid environmental changes on the lower Yangtze, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Jungan; Taylor, David; Atahan, Pia; Zhang, Xinrong; Wu, Guoxuan; Dodson, John; Zheng, Hongbo; Itzstein-Davey, Freea

    2011-01-01

    Analyses of sedimentary evidence in the form of spores, pollen, freshwater algae, dinoflagellate cysts, phytoliths and charcoal from AMS 14C-dated, Holocene-aged sequences provide an excellent opportunity to examine the responses of Neolithic agriculturalists in the lower Yangtze to changing environments. Evidence from two sites close to the southern margin of the Yangtze delta and separated by what is now Hangzhou Bay attests the critical importance to early attempts at food production of access to freshwater resources. More readily, if episodically, available freshwater resources during the early to mid-Holocene on the Hangjiahu plain may have encouraged an early reliance on rice-based agriculture, which in turn facilitated the accumulation of agricultural surpluses and cultural diversification. Cultural change was relatively attenuated and human population pressures possibly lower on the Ningshao plain, seemingly because of much more profound environmental impacts of variations in local hydrological conditions, and because predominantly saline conditions, associated with rising relative sea level, hampered the early development of irrigated agriculture. The evidence, although largely dating to the early and middle parts of the Holocene, provides a timely warning of the complexity of vulnerability to climate change-induced processes of agriculture, and indeed human activities more generally, on megadeltas in Asia.

  3. Environmental security benefits arising from Russian/Norwegian/US cooperation in the high Arctic

    SciTech Connect

    Dyer, R.S.; Moskowitz, P.D.; Czajkowski, C.J.

    1997-05-01

    Past practices associated with the civilian and military use of nuclear power in NW Russia present large environmental security risks of international concern. These risks arise from a variety of practices associated with weapons production, testing, power production and waste management. The threats presented by these activities are multimedia in nature, span political boundaries and cannot be simply or inexpensively remediated. Today, cooperative efforts are being undertaken to improve environmental security by remediating existing and potential emission sources. Initial efforts focused on the upgrade and expansion of the Murmansk Low-level Liquid Waste Treatment Facility, Murmansk, Russia. This facility handles wastes generated during the decommissioning of Russian Nuclear Navy submarines and from the operation of the Russian commercial nuclear-powered icebreaker fleet. This upgraded facility is now being constructed and is expected to be completed by March 1998. Completion of this facility will result in the cessation of any future dumping of liquid radioactive wastes into the Barents and Kara Seas. Another large environmental security risk is the LEPSE. The LEPSE is a ship docked in Murmansk, Russia, that contains {approximately}650 spent fuel elements as well as other solid and liquid wastes from Russian nuclear vessels. International efforts are now being mounted to remove the spent and damaged fuel from this ship, including the safe removal and storage/disposal of the fuel elements. This paper will summarize the environmental security problems presented by these different sources and the likely environmental security benefits associated with their remediation. 5 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.

  4. Review on water leakage control in distribution networks and the associated environmental benefits.

    PubMed

    Xu, Qiang; Liu, Ruiping; Chen, Qiuwen; Li, Ruonan

    2014-05-01

    Water supply is the primary element of an urban system. Due to rapid urbanization and water scarcity, maintaining a stable and safe water supply has become a challenge to many cities, whereas a large amount of water is lost from the pipes of distribution systems. Water leakage is not only a waste of water resources, but also incurs great socio-economic costs. This article presents a comprehensive review on the potential water leakage control approaches and specifically discusses the benefits of each to environmental conservation. It is concluded that water leakage could be further reduced by improving leakage detection capability through a combination of predictive modeling and monitoring instruments, optimizing pipe maintenance strategy, and developing an instant pressure regulation system. The environment could benefit from these actions because of water savings and the reduction of energy consumption as well as greenhouse gas emissions. PMID:25079625

  5. A survey of unmanned ground vehicles with applications to agricultural and environmental sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonadies, Stephanie; Lefcourt, Alan; Gadsden, S. Andrew

    2016-05-01

    Unmanned ground vehicles have been utilized in the last few decades in an effort to increase the efficiency of agriculture, in particular, by reducing labor needs. Unmanned vehicles have been used for a variety of purposes including: soil sampling, irrigation management, precision spraying, mechanical weeding, and crop harvesting. In this paper, unmanned ground vehicles, implemented by researchers or commercial operations, are characterized through a comparison to other vehicles used in agriculture, namely airplanes and UAVs. An overview of different trade-offs of configurations, control schemes, and data collection technologies is provided. Emphasis is given to the use of unmanned ground vehicles in food crops, and includes a discussion of environmental impacts and economics. Factors considered regarding the future trends and potential issues of unmanned ground vehicles include development, management and performance. Also included is a strategy to demonstrate to farmers the safety and profitability of implementing the technology.

  6. Public health and the potential benefits of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design.

    PubMed

    Cozens, Paul

    2007-01-01

    Studies have consistently found that safety and security are major public concerns; however, crime is rarely considered as an outcome in public health. The recent shift by planning policy towards promoting compact, 'walkable' communities close to public transport aims to redress many of the problems associated with urban sprawl. However, communities that do not feel safe are less likely to be active citizens. This paper argues that Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design has potential benefits for public health in the provision of local crime risk assessments and in delivering safer environments, which can support active living, walkable communities and public health. PMID:18093465

  7. REDUCING THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF AGRICULTURAL AND NON-AGRICULTURAL SYSTEMS: MITIGATING OFF-SITE TRANSPORT OF PESTICIDES WITH RUNOFF

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Water quality surveys have detected numerous pesticides in surface waters of urban and agricultural areas. The intense use of pesticides in highly managed turf systems and agriculture is of concern due to their potential adverse effects on the quality of surface waters, impacting drinking water reso...

  8. Global environmental impacts of agricultural expansion: The need for sustainable and efficient practices

    PubMed Central

    Tilman, David

    1999-01-01

    The recent intensification of agriculture, and the prospects of future intensification, will have major detrimental impacts on the nonagricultural terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems of the world. The doubling of agricultural food production during the past 35 years was associated with a 6.87-fold increase in nitrogen fertilization, a 3.48-fold increase in phosphorus fertilization, a 1.68-fold increase in the amount of irrigated cropland, and a 1.1-fold increase in land in cultivation. Based on a simple linear extension of past trends, the anticipated next doubling of global food production would be associated with approximately 3-fold increases in nitrogen and phosphorus fertilization rates, a doubling of the irrigated land area, and an 18% increase in cropland. These projected changes would have dramatic impacts on the diversity, composition, and functioning of the remaining natural ecosystems of the world, and on their ability to provide society with a variety of essential ecosystem services. The largest impacts would be on freshwater and marine ecosystems, which would be greatly eutrophied by high rates of nitrogen and phosphorus release from agricultural fields. Aquatic nutrient eutrophication can lead to loss of biodiversity, outbreaks of nuisance species, shifts in the structure of food chains, and impairment of fisheries. Because of aerial redistribution of various forms of nitrogen, agricultural intensification also would eutrophy many natural terrestrial ecosystems and contribute to atmospheric accumulation of greenhouse gases. These detrimental environmental impacts of agriculture can be minimized only if there is much more efficient use and recycling of nitrogen and phosphorus in agroecosystems. PMID:10339530

  9. [Environmental benefit-loss analysis of agro-ecosystem in Haihe River Basin, China].

    PubMed

    Bai, Yang; Ouyang, Zhi-yun; Zheng, Hua; Xu, Wei-hua; Jiang, Bo; Fang, Yu

    2010-11-01

    According to the connotation of ecosystem services, an evaluation index system for the agro-ecosystem services in the Haihe River basin of China was established, and the economic value of the agro-ecosystem services and environmental costs were evaluated by the methods of market valuation, shadow price, and opportunity cost. In 2005, the total environmental benefit value of the agro-ecosystem services in the basin was 180. 264 billion RMB, with the regulation value of 79.416 billion RMB (44.06%) and the supporting value of 100.848 billion RMB (55.94%). Provision and cultural services were not considered in this research. From the viewpoint of functional type, the ecosystem services value from high to low was in the order of oxygen release > water conservation > nutrient cycling > soil conservation > waste purification > environmental purification > carbon sequestration > straw returning. The environmental costs of the agro-ecosystem were quite high (42. 293 billion RMB), among which, fertilizer loss was 427.42 x 10(4) t, equivalent to 15.191 billion RMB, and greenhouse gases production was calculated as 3599.65 x 10(4) t CO2, equivalent to 27. 102 billion RMB. PMID:21361021

  10. Beyond the throwaway society: A life cycle-based assessment of the environmental benefit of reuse.

    PubMed

    Castellani, Valentina; Sala, Serenella; Mirabella, Nadia

    2015-07-01

    In the context of a circular economy, sustainable consumption is often seen as the antithesis of current consumption patterns, which have led to the definition of the so-called throwaway society. Reuse may provide a preferred alternative to other waste management options, because it promotes resource efficiency and may significantly reduce environmental impacts. To appraise the environmental benefits related to reuse of goods, a methodology adopting life cycle assessment (LCA) has been developed. A standardized procedure has been developed, identifying reference products within product category subject to reuse, and collecting reliable inventory data as a basis for calculating environmental impact through LCA. A case study on a second-hand shop is presented, and the avoided impacts are quantified. Inventory data were taken both from the literature and directly from sales and surveys submitted to customers. The results are presented, highlighting: 1) for each product category, the average avoided impacts for 1 unit of reused product considered; and 2) for the overall activities of the second-hand shop, the cumulative avoided impacts in 1 yr. In the case study, the higher contribution to avoided impacts comes from the apparel sector, due to the high amount of items sold, followed by the furniture sector, because of the high amount of environmental impacts avoided by the reuse of each single item. PMID:25557152

  11. Design-with-Nature for Multifunctional Landscapes: Environmental Benefits and Social Barriers in Community Development

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Bo; Li, Ming-Han; Li, Shujuan

    2013-01-01

    Since the early 1970s, Ian McHarg’s design-with-nature concept has been inspiring landscape architects, community and regional planners, and liked-minded professionals to create designs that take advantage of ecosystem services and promote environmental and public health. This study bridges the gap in the literature that has resulted from a lack of empirical examinations on the multiple performance benefits derived through design-with-nature and the under-investigated social aspect emanated from McHarg’s Ecological Determinism design approach. The Woodlands, TX, USA, an ecologically designed community development under McHarg’s approach, is compared with two adjacent communities that follow the conventional design approach. Using national environmental databases and multiple-year residents’ survey information, this study assesses three landscape performance metrics of McHarg’s approach: stormwater runoff, urban heat island effect, and social acceptance. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) was used to assess the development extent and land surface temperature distribution. Results show that McHarg’s approach demonstrates benefits in reducing runoff and urban heat island effect, whereas it confronts challenges with the general acceptance of manicured landscapes and thus results in a low safety perception level when residents interact with naturally designed landscapes. The authors argue that design-with-nature warrants multifunctionality because of its intrinsic interdisciplinary approach. Moreover, education and dissemination of successful examples can achieve a greater level of awareness among the public and further promote multifunctional design for landscape sustainability. PMID:24169408

  12. Benefits, environmental risks, social concerns, and policy implications of biotechnology in aquaculture

    SciTech Connect

    Kapuscinski, A.R.; Hallerman, E.M.

    1994-10-01

    Among the many methodologies encompassing biotechnology in aquaculture, this report addresses: the production of genetically modified aquatic organisms (aquatic GMOs) by gene transfer, chromosome set manipulation, or hybridization or protoplast fusion between species; new health management tools, including DNA-Based diagnostics and recombinant DNA vaccines; Marker-assisted selection; cryopreservation; and stock marking. These methodologies pose a wide range of potential economic benefits for aquaculture by providing improved or new means to affect the mix of necessary material inputs, enhance production efficiency, or improve product quality. Advances in aquaculture through biotechnology could simulate growth of the aquaculture industry to provide a larger proportion of consummer demand, and thereby reduce pressure and natural stocks from over-harvest. Judicious application of gamete cryopreservation and chromosome set manipulations to achieve sterilization could reduce environmental risks of some aquaculture operations. Given the significant losses to disease in many aquaculture enterprises, potential benefits of DNA-based health management tools are very high and appear to pose no major environmental risks or social concerns.

  13. Design-with-nature for multifunctional landscapes: environmental benefits and social barriers in community development.

    PubMed

    Yang, Bo; Li, Ming-Han; Li, Shujuan

    2013-11-01

    Since the early 1970s, Ian McHarg's design-with-nature concept has been inspiring landscape architects, community and regional planners, and liked-minded professionals to create designs that take advantage of ecosystem services and promote environmental and public health. This study bridges the gap in the literature that has resulted from a lack of empirical examinations on the multiple performance benefits derived through design-with-nature and the under-investigated social aspect emanated from McHarg's Ecological Determinism design approach. The Woodlands, TX, USA, an ecologically designed community development under McHarg's approach, is compared with two adjacent communities that follow the conventional design approach. Using national environmental databases and multiple-year residents' survey information, this study assesses three landscape performance metrics of McHarg's approach: stormwater runoff, urban heat island effect, and social acceptance. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) was used to assess the development extent and land surface temperature distribution. Results show that McHarg's approach demonstrates benefits in reducing runoff and urban heat island effect, whereas it confronts challenges with the general acceptance of manicured landscapes and thus results in a low safety perception level when residents interact with naturally designed landscapes. The authors argue that design-with-nature warrants multifunctionality because of its intrinsic interdisciplinary approach. Moreover, education and dissemination of successful examples can achieve a greater level of awareness among the public and further promote multifunctional design for landscape sustainability. PMID:24169408

  14. Valuing the benefits of improved marine environmental quality under multiple stressors.

    PubMed

    Tuhkanen, Heidi; Piirsalu, Evelin; Nõmmann, Tea; Karlõševa, Aljona; Nõmmann, Sulev; Czajkowski, Mikołaj; Hanley, Nick

    2016-05-01

    Many marine ecosystems are under increasing pressure from multiple stressors. In the Baltic Sea, these stressors include oil and chemical spills from shipping, nutrient run-off from land and the introduction of non-indigenous species. All of these pressures have been growing over recent years. Increasing pressures lead to reductions in environmental quality, which produce negative effects on human well-being. In this paper, the choice experiment method is used to estimate the benefits to people in Estonia resulting from reductions in pressure from multiple stressors in the Baltic Sea. The main results show that, firstly, respondents have a positive, statistically-significant willingness to pay to reduce each of the three stressors analysed. Secondly, the average willingness to pay for the improvement in the quality of all Estonian marine waters to achieve Good Environmental Status is around 65 euro per household per year, with a 95% confidence interval of 48-77 euro. Thirdly, the greatest share of value of this total economic benefit is derived from the willingness to pay for reductions in the risk of large scale oil and chemical spills. PMID:26881728

  15. 7 CFR 2902.8 - Determining life cycle costs, environmental and health benefits, and performance.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... Agriculture (Continued) OFFICE OF ENERGY POLICY AND NEW USES, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE GUIDELINES FOR... analytical approaches: The BEES analytical tool along with the qualifications of the independent...

  16. Environmentally sound irrigated agriculture in the arid west: New challenges for water resources planners and environmental scientists

    SciTech Connect

    Quinn, N.W.T.

    1991-04-01

    This is an exciting time for water resources planners and environmental scientists in the State and Federal Agencies in California. The growing environmental awareness of the public has raised their interest in the manner by which water is managed and allocated. Current and future impending water shortages are challenging engineers and planners to make sound policy and system operations decisions to maximize the utility of scarce water resources while ensuring that the environment within which we live is adequately protected to the satisfaction of an informed public. New and innovative decision support systems are needed to meet these challenges that are flexible, comprehensible and accurate and which allow the public a more visible role in the planning process. These changes may help to bring the agricultural and environmental communities closer together in finding solutions to water resources problems and wrest policy making for water resources management out of the hands of lawyers and the courts and restore it to those whose livelihoods are affected by the intentions of these policies. 4 refs.

  17. Environmentally-friendly agricultural practices and their acceptance by smallholder farmers in China-A case study in Xinxiang County, Henan Province.

    PubMed

    Luo, Liangguo; Qin, Lihuan; Wang, Yan; Wang, Qian

    2016-11-15

    Intensive agriculture with high inputs has resulted in rapid development of crop production in China, accompanied by negative environmental effects such as serious non-point source agricultural pollution. Implementation of environmentally-friendly agricultural practices can effectively prevent such pollution. However, the acceptance and adoption of such practices are related not only to associated risks and potential benefits, but also to farmers' attitudes to and knowledge of scientifically validated practices. In the presented study we surveyed views of a stratified sample of 150 smallholder farmers and 10 extension service experts from Xinxiang, a high grain-producing county in Henan Province, China. Their opinions were explored in personal interviews using a questionnaire with three sections. The first section mainly sought information on surveyed farmers' demographic characteristics like gender, age and education. The second section concerned their awareness of the environmental problems and losses of yields associated with customary over-fertilization practices, and their main concerns about new practices. The third section addressed farmers' attitudes to, and the extension service experts' professional evaluations of, five selected practices in terms of the importance of seven factors (time demands, costs, risks, compatibility, complexity, trialability and observability). Acceptance indices were calculated from the responses to rank farmers' willingness to accept the five environmentally-friendly agricultural practices, and thus identify the most appropriate to promote in the study area. The results show that costs, followed by risks and observability, are the more important factors affecting farmers' decisions to adopt a practice. The results also indicate that no or minimum tillage and returning straw to the field are the most appropriate practices to promote initially at large scale in Xinxiang. The others could be popularized gradually after providing

  18. Environmental assessment of anaerobically digested sludge reuse in agriculture: potential impacts of emerging micropollutants.

    PubMed

    Hospido, Almudena; Carballa, Marta; Moreira, Maite; Omil, Francisco; Lema, Juan M; Feijoo, Gumersindo

    2010-05-01

    Agricultural application of sewage sludge has been emotionally discussed in the last decades, because the latter contains organic micropollutants with unknown fate and risk potential. In this work, the reuse of anaerobically digested sludge in agriculture is evaluated from an environmental point of view by using Life Cycle Assessment methodology. More specifically, the potential impacts of emerging micropollutants, such as pharmaceuticals and personal care products, present in the sludge have been quantified. Four scenarios were considered according to the temperature of the anaerobic digestion (mesophilic or thermophilic) and the sludge retention time (20 or 10d), and they have been compared with the non-treated sludge. From an environmental point of view, the disposal of undigested sludge is not the most suitable alternative, except for global warming due to the dominance (65-85%) of the indirect emissions associated to the electricity use. Nutrient-related direct emissions dominate the eutrophication category impact in all the scenarios (>71.4%), although a beneficial impact related to the avoidance of industrial fertilisers production is also quantified (up to 6.7%). In terms of human and terrestrial toxicity, the direct emissions of heavy metals to soil dominate these two impact categories (>70%), and the contribution of other micropollutants is minimal. Moreover, only six (Galaxolide, Tonalide, Diazepam, Ibuprofen, Sulfamethoxazole and 17alpha-ethinyloestradiol) out of the 13 substances considered are really significant since they account for more than 95% of the overall micropollutants impact. PMID:20347114

  19. Rapid screening of flonicamid residues in environmental and agricultural samples by a sensitive enzyme immunoassay.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhenjiang; Zhang, Zhen; Zhu, Gangbing; Sun, Jianfan; Zou, Bin; Li, Ming; Wang, Jiagao

    2016-05-01

    A fast and sensitive polyclonal antibody-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was developed for the analysis of flonicamid in environmental and agricultural samples. Two haptens of flonicamid differing in spacer arm length were synthesized and conjugated to proteins to be used as immunogens for the production of polyclonal antibodies. To obtain most sensitive combination of antibody/coating antigen, two antibodies were separately screened by homologous and heterologous assays. After optimization, the flonicamid ELISA showed that the 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50 value) was 3.86mgL(-1), and the limit of detection (IC20 value) was 0.032mgL(-1). There was no cross-reactivity to similar tested compounds. The recoveries obtained after the addition of standard flonicamid to the samples, including water, soil, carrot, apple and tomato, ranged from 79.3% to 116.4%. Moreover, the results of the ELISA for the spiked samples were largely consistent with the gas chromatography (R(2)=0.9891). The data showed that the proposed ELISA is an alternative tool for rapid, sensitive and accurate monitoring of flonicamid in environmental and agricultural samples. PMID:26897400

  20. Environmental enhancement using short-rotation woody crops and perennial grasses as alternative agricultural crops

    SciTech Connect

    Tolbert, V.R.; Schiller, A.

    1995-12-31

    Short-rotation woody crops and perennial grasses are grown as biomass feedstocks for energy and fiber. When replacing traditional row crops on similar lands, these alternative crops can provide multiple environmental benefits in addition to enhancing rural economies and providing valuable feedstock resources. The Department of Energy is supporting research to address how these crops can provide environmental benefits to soil, water and native wildlife species in addition to providing bioenergy feedstocks. Research is underway to address the potential for biomass crops to provide soil conservation and water quality improvements in crop settings. Replacement of traditional erosive row crops with biomass crops on marginal lands and establishment of biomass plantations as filter strips adjacent to streams and wetlands are being studied. The habitat value of different biomass crops for selected wildlife species is also under study. To date, these studies have shown that in comparison with row crops biomass plantings of both grass and tree crops increased biodiversity of birds; however, the habitat value of tree plantations is not equivalent to natural forests. The effects on native wildlife of establishing multiple plantations across a landscape are being studied. Combining findings on wildlife use of individual plantations with information on the cumulative effects of multiple plantations on wildlife populations can provide guidance for establishing and managing biomass crops to enhance biodiversity while providing biomass feedstocks. Data from site-specific environmental studies can provide input for evaluation of the probable effects of large-scale plantings at both landscape and regional levels of resolution.

  1. Environmental enhancement using short-rotation woody crops and perennial grasses as alternative agricultural crops

    SciTech Connect

    Tolbert, V.R.; Schiller, A.

    1996-10-01

    Short-rotation woody crops and perennial grasses are grown as biomass feedstocks for energy and fiber. When replacing traditional row crops on similar lands, these alternative crops can provide multiple environmental benefits in addition to enhancing rural economies and providing valuable resources. The DOE is supporting research to address how these crops can provide environmental benefits to soil, water, and native wildlife species in addition to providing bioenergy feedstocks. Research is underway to address the potential for biomass crops to provide soils conservation and water quality improvements in crop settings. Replacement of traditional erosive row drops with biomass crops on marginal lands and establishment of biomass plantations as filter strips adjacent to streams and wetlands are being studied. The habitat value of different crops for wildlife species is also considered. Combining findings on wildlife use of individual plantations with information on the cumulative effects of multiple plantations on wildlife populations can provide guidance for establishing and managing biomass crops to enhance biodiversity while providing feedstocks. Data from site-specific environmental studies can provide input for evaluation of the effects of large-scale plantings at both landscape and regional levels of resolution.

  2. Biotechnology in agriculture, 1986-May 1992. Citation from agricola concerning diseases and other environmental considerations. Bibliographies and literature of agriculture (Final)

    SciTech Connect

    Bebee, C.N.

    1992-08-01

    The citations in this bibliography, Biotechnology in Agriculture, 1986 - May 1992, are selected from the AGRICOLA database and cover diseases, insects, nematodes, weeds, chemicals, and other environmental considerations. This is the 46th volume in a series of commodity-oriented listings of citations from AGRICOLA. Entries in the bibliography are subdivided into a series of section headings used in the contents of the Bibliography of Agriculture. Each item appears under every section heading assigned to the cited document. A personal author index accompanies this publication.

  3. Reducing agricultural greenhouse gas emissions: role of biotechnology, organic systems, and consumer behavior

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    All agricultural systems have environmental and societal costs and benefits that should be objectively quantified before recommending specific management practices. Agricultural biotechnology, which takes advantage of genetically engineered organisms (GEOs), along with organic cropping systems, econ...

  4. CONSTRUCTED WETLANDS IN SUPPORT OF RIPARIAN RESTORATION: WATER QUALITY BENEFITS AND HABITAT RESTORATION IN DELAWARE AGRICULTURAL AREAS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Surface water runoff from agricultural landscapes is one of the major sources of water quality impairment in the United States. With the advent of buffer strips and conservation minded tilling practices the agricultural community has made significant reductions in overland runof...

  5. Application, chemistry, and environmental implications of contaminant-immobilization amendments on agricultural soil and water quality.

    PubMed

    Udeigwe, Theophilus K; Eze, Peter N; Teboh, Jasper M; Stietiya, Mohammed H

    2011-01-01

    Contaminants such as nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), dissolved organic carbon (DOC), arsenic (As), heavy metals, and infectious pathogens are often associated with agricultural systems. Various soil and water remediation techniques including the use of chemical amendments have been employed to reduce the risks associated with these contaminants. This paper reviews the use of chemical amendments for immobilizing principal agricultural contaminants, the chemistry of contaminant immobilization, and the environmental consequences associated with the use of these chemical products. The commonly used chemical amendments were grouped into aluminum-, calcium-, and iron-containing products. Other products of interest include phosphorus-containing compounds and silicate clays. Mechanisms of contaminant immobilization could include one or a combination of the following: surface precipitation, adsorption to mineral surfaces (ion exchange and formation of stable complexes), precipitation as salts, and co-precipitation. The reaction pH, redox potential, clay minerals, and organic matter are potential factors that could control contaminant-immobilization processes. Reviews of potential environmental implications revealed that undesirable substances such as trace elements, fluoride, sulfate, total dissolved solids, as well as radioactive materials associated with some industrial wastes used as amendment could be leached to ground water or lost through runoff to receiving water bodies. The acidity or alkalinity associated with some of the industrial-waste amendments could also constitute a substantial environmental hazard. Chemical amendments could introduce elements capable of inducing or affecting the activities of certain lithotrophic microbes that could influence vital geochemical processes such as mineral dissolution and formation, weathering, and organic matter mineralization. PMID:20832118

  6. Evaluating sustainable water quality management in the U.S.: Urban, Agricultural, and Environmental Protection Practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Oel, P. R.; Alfredo, K. A.; Russo, T. A.

    2015-12-01

    Sustainable water management typically emphasizes water resource quantity, with focus directed at availability and use practices. When attention is placed on sustainable water quality management, the holistic, cross-sector perspective inherent to sustainability is often lost. Proper water quality management is a critical component of sustainable development practices. However, sustainable development definitions and metrics related to water quality resilience and management are often not well defined; water quality is often buried in large indicator sets used for analysis, and the policy regulating management practices create sector specific burdens for ensuring adequate water quality. In this research, we investigated the methods by which water quality is evaluated through internationally applied indicators and incorporated into the larger idea of "sustainability." We also dissect policy's role in the distribution of responsibility with regard to water quality management in the United States through evaluation of three broad sectors: urban, agriculture, and environmental water quality. Our research concludes that despite a growing intention to use a single system approach for urban, agricultural, and environmental water quality management, one does not yet exist and is even hindered by our current policies and regulations. As policy continues to lead in determining water quality and defining contamination limits, new regulation must reconcile the disparity in requirements for the contaminators and those performing end-of-pipe treatment. Just as the sustainable development indicators we researched tried to integrate environmental, economic, and social aspects without skewing focus to one of these three categories, policy cannot continue to regulate a single sector of society without considering impacts to the entire watershed and/or region. Unequal distribution of the water pollution burden creates disjointed economic growth, infrastructure development, and policy

  7. A Case Study of Environmental Benefits of Sensor-Based Nitrogen Application in Corn.

    PubMed

    Li, Ao; Duval, Benjamin D; Anex, Robert; Scharf, Peter; Ashtekar, Jenette M; Owens, Phillip R; Ellis, Charles

    2016-03-01

    Crop canopy reflectance sensors make it possible to estimate crop N demand and apply appropriate N fertilizer rates at different locations in a field, reducing fertilizer input and associated environmental impacts while maintaining crop yield. Environmental benefits, however, have not been quantified previously. The objective of this study was to estimate the environmental impact of sensor-based N fertilization of corn using model-based environmental Life Cycle Assessment. Nitrogen rate and corn grain yield were measured during a sensor-based, variable N-rate experiment in Lincoln County, MO. Spatially explicit soil properties were derived using a predictive modeling technique based on in-field soil sampling. Soil NO emissions, volatilized NH loss, and soil NO leaching were predicted at 60 discrete field locations using the DeNitrification-DeComposition (DNDC) model. Life cycle cumulative energy consumption, global warming potential (GWP), acidification potential, and eutrophication potential were estimated using model predictions, experimental data, and life cycle data. In this experiment, variable-rate N management reduced total N fertilizer use by 11% without decreasing grain yield. Precision application of N is predicted to have reduced soil NO emissions by 10%, volatilized NH loss by 23%, and NO leaching by 16%, which in turn reduced life cycle nonrenewable energy consumption, GWP, acidification potential, and eutrophication potential by 7, 10, 22, and 16%, respectively. Although mean N losses were reduced, the variations in N losses were increased compared with conventional, uniform N application. Crop canopy sensor-based, variable-rate N fertilization was predicted to increase corn grain N use efficiency while simultaneously reducing total life-cycle energy use, GWP, acidification, and eutrophication. PMID:27065415

  8. The environmental costs and benefits of biomass energy use in California

    SciTech Connect

    Morris, G.

    1997-05-01

    The California renewable energy industries have worked diligently during the past couple of years to develop public policies conducive to the future of renewable energy production within the context of electric market restructuring and the evolving competitive electric services industry. The state`s biomass power industry has organized itself as the California Biomass Energy Alliance (CBEA), and has participated vigorously in the regulatory and legislative processes. In order to reward biomass power generators for the special services they provide, CBEA has promoted the concept of providing incentives specifically targeted to biomass within the context of any renewables program enacted in the state. This concept has been embraced by the other renewables industry organizations, but resisted by the utilities. This study represents an effort to identify, characterize, ad quantify the environmental costs and benefits of biomass energy use in California, and to elucidate the future role of biomass power production within the context of the evolving deregulation of the California electricity industry. The report begins with a review of the development and growth of the California biomass power industry during the past 15 years. This is followed by an analysis of the biomass fuels market development during the same period. It examines trends in the types and costs of biomass fuels. The environmental performance of the mature California biomass energy industry is analyzed, and takes into account the environmental impacts of the industry, and the impacts that would be associated with disposing of the materials used as fuels if the biomass power industry were not in operation. The analysis is then extended to consider the environmental and economic consequences of the loss of biomass generating capacity since 1993. The report ends with a consideration of the future prospects for the industry in the context of restructuring.

  9. Restructuring the Indian power sector with energy conservation as the motive for economic and environmental benefits

    SciTech Connect

    Palanichamy, C.; Chelvan, R.K.; Babu, N.S.; Nadarajan, C.

    1999-12-01

    India's strong economic performance of recent years requires continuing effort from the newly formed Government to widen the ambit of economic reform. Though the Government has given higher priority for the power development projects, the Indian Power sector is struggling with formidable difficulties of meeting the heavy demands of electricity due to higher amount of power losses and energy thefts. To give a supporting hand to the Government, this paper suggests restructuring of the Power sector with energy conservation as the main motive to achieve economical and environmental benefits. The capabilities of the Energy Conservation Policies developed are illustrated via tests by three distinct ways on a State Grid alike Test System and the test results confirm the suitability of the proposed policies for real-time implementation on the Indian Power Sector.

  10. Reaping Environmental Benefits of a Global Hydrogen Economy: How Large, Fow Soon, and at What Risks?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubey, M. K.; Horowitz, L. W.; Rahn, T. A.; Kinnison, D. E.

    2004-12-01

    The Western world has taken an aggressive posture to transition to a global hydrogen economy. While numerous technical challenges need to be addressed to achieve this it is timely to examine the environmental benefits and risks of this transition. Hydrogen provides an efficient energy carrier that promises to enhance urban and regional air quality that will benefit human health. It could also reduce risks of climate change if large-scale hydrogen production by renewable or nuclear energy sources becomes viable. While it is well known that the byproduct of energy produced from hydrogen is water vapor, it is not well known that the storage and transfer of hydrogen is inevitably accompanied by measurable leakage of hydrogen. Unintended consequences of hydrogen leakage include reduction in global oxidative capacity, changes in tropospheric ozone, and increase in stratospheric water that would exacerbate halogen induced ozone losses as well as impact the earth's radiation budget and climate. We construct plausible global hydrogen energy use and leak scenarios and assess their impacts using global 3-D simulations by the Model for Ozone And Related Trace species (MOZART). The hydrogen fluxes and photochemistry in our model successfully reproduce the contemporary hydrogen cycle as observed by a network of remote global stations. Our intent is to determine environmentally tolerable leak rates and also facilitate a gradual phasing in of a hydrogen economy over the next several decades as the elimination of the use of halocarbons gradually reduces halogen induced stratospheric ozone loss rates. We stress that the leak rates in global hydrogen infrastructure and the future evolution of microbial soil sink of hydrogen that determines its current lifetime (about 2 years) are principal sources of uncertainty in our assessment.

  11. NEON: Contributing continental-scale long-term environmental data for the benefit of society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wee, B.; Aulenbach, S.

    2011-12-01

    natural-human systems cannot be understood in the absence of data about the human dimension. Another essential element is the community of tool and platform developers who create the infrastructure for scientists, educators, resource managers, and policy analysts to discover, analyze, and collaborate on problems using the diverse data that are required to address emerging large-scale environmental challenges. These challenges are very unlikely to be problems confined to this generation: they are urgent, compelling, and long-term problems that require a sustained effort to generate and curate data and information from observations, models, and experiments. NEON's long-term national physical and information infrastructure for environmental observation is one of the cornerstones of a framework that transforms science and information for the benefit of society.

  12. Cyanobacteria: A Precious Bio-resource in Agriculture, Ecosystem, and Environmental Sustainability

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Jay Shankar; Kumar, Arun; Rai, Amar N.; Singh, Devendra P.

    2016-01-01

    Keeping in view, the challenges concerning agro-ecosystem and environment, the recent developments in biotechnology offers a more reliable approach to address the food security for future generations and also resolve the complex environmental problems. Several unique features of cyanobacteria such as oxygenic photosynthesis, high biomass yield, growth on non-arable lands and a wide variety of water sources (contaminated and polluted waters), generation of useful by-products and bio-fuels, enhancing the soil fertility and reducing green house gas emissions, have collectively offered these bio-agents as the precious bio-resource for sustainable development. Cyanobacterial biomass is the effective bio-fertilizer source to improve soil physico-chemical characteristics such as water-holding capacity and mineral nutrient status of the degraded lands. The unique characteristics of cyanobacteria include their ubiquity presence, short generation time and capability to fix the atmospheric N2. Similar to other prokaryotic bacteria, the cyanobacteria are increasingly applied as bio-inoculants for improving soil fertility and environmental quality. Genetically engineered cyanobacteria have been devised with the novel genes for the production of a number of bio-fuels such as bio-diesel, bio-hydrogen, bio-methane, synga, and therefore, open new avenues for the generation of bio-fuels in the economically sustainable manner. This review is an effort to enlist the valuable information about the qualities of cyanobacteria and their potential role in solving the agricultural and environmental problems for the future welfare of the planet. PMID:27148218

  13. Cyanobacteria: A Precious Bio-resource in Agriculture, Ecosystem, and Environmental Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Singh, Jay Shankar; Kumar, Arun; Rai, Amar N; Singh, Devendra P

    2016-01-01

    Keeping in view, the challenges concerning agro-ecosystem and environment, the recent developments in biotechnology offers a more reliable approach to address the food security for future generations and also resolve the complex environmental problems. Several unique features of cyanobacteria such as oxygenic photosynthesis, high biomass yield, growth on non-arable lands and a wide variety of water sources (contaminated and polluted waters), generation of useful by-products and bio-fuels, enhancing the soil fertility and reducing green house gas emissions, have collectively offered these bio-agents as the precious bio-resource for sustainable development. Cyanobacterial biomass is the effective bio-fertilizer source to improve soil physico-chemical characteristics such as water-holding capacity and mineral nutrient status of the degraded lands. The unique characteristics of cyanobacteria include their ubiquity presence, short generation time and capability to fix the atmospheric N2. Similar to other prokaryotic bacteria, the cyanobacteria are increasingly applied as bio-inoculants for improving soil fertility and environmental quality. Genetically engineered cyanobacteria have been devised with the novel genes for the production of a number of bio-fuels such as bio-diesel, bio-hydrogen, bio-methane, synga, and therefore, open new avenues for the generation of bio-fuels in the economically sustainable manner. This review is an effort to enlist the valuable information about the qualities of cyanobacteria and their potential role in solving the agricultural and environmental problems for the future welfare of the planet. PMID:27148218

  14. Monitoring of the risk of farmland abandonment as an efficient tool to assess the environmental and socio-economic impact of the Common Agriculture Policy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milenov, Pavel; Vassilev, Vassil; Vassileva, Anna; Radkov, Radko; Samoungi, Vessela; Dimitrov, Zlatomir; Vichev, Nikola

    2014-10-01

    Farmland abandonment (FLA) could be defined as the cessation of agricultural activities on a given surface of land (Pointereau et al., 2008). FLA, often associated with social and economic problems in rural areas, has significant environmental consequences. During the 1990s, millions of hectares of farmland in the new EU Member States, from Central and Eastern Europe, were abandoned as a result of the transition process from centralized and planned to market economy. The policy tools adopted gradually within the Common Agricultural Policy of the European Union (EU CAP), as well as the EU environmental and structural policies, aimed to prevent further expansion of this phenomenon and to facilitate the revival of the agriculture land, being abandoned (ComReg 1122/2009). The Agri-Environment (AGRI-ENV) component of the Core Information Service (CIS), developed within the scope of the FP7-funded project "geoland2" were designed to support the agricultural user community at pan-European and national levels by contributing to the improvement of more accurate and timely monitoring of the status of agricultural land use in Europe and its change. The purpose of the product ‘Farmland abandonment', as part of the AGRI-ENV package, is to detect potentially abandoned agriculture land, based on multi-annual SPOT data with several acquisitions per year. It provides essential independent information on the status of the agricultural land as recorded in the Land Parcel Identification System (LPIS), which is one of the core instruments of the implementation of CAP. The production line is based on object-based image analysis and benefits from the extensive availability of Biophysical parameters derived from the satellite data (geoland2). The method detects/tracks those land (or so-called reference) parcels in the LPIS, holding significant amount of land agriculture found as potentially abandoned. Reference parcels with such change are flagged and reported, enabling the National

  15. Sub-regional dimensions of agricultural and environmental nitrogen: the case of Asia.

    PubMed

    Syers, John Keith

    2005-09-01

    Asia embraces a wide range of cropping environments, largely related to the diversity of climate. To meet the high food requirements of a very large population (some 59% of the earth's total) large inputs of mineral N fertilizer are required (44.2 Tg N x yr(-1) in the mid 1990 s). However, because of the low (20%-50%) overall efficiency of use of fertilizer N, sometimes coupled with heavy use in intensively-farmed areas (for example in parts of China), losses of fertilizer N from agricultural land are expected to be high. Part of the N lost is thought to cause pollution of the atmosphere and water resources. A sub-regional approach, based on the FAO Agroecological Zone (AEZ) concept, has the potential to provide meaningful assessments of the agricultural and environmental dimensions of N. The AEZ concept can also provide the rationale for locating Sub-regional Centers of the International Nitrogen Initiative (INI) by basing the considerations, as far as practicable, on agroecological conditions. PMID:20549430

  16. Sub-regional dimensions of agricultural and environmental nitrogen: the case of Asia.

    PubMed

    Syers, John Keith

    2005-12-01

    Asia embraces a wide range of cropping environments, largely related to the diversity of climate. To meet the high food requirements of a very large population (some 59% of the earth's total) large inputs of mineral N fertilizer are required (44.2 Tg N x yr(-1) in the mid 1990s). However, because of the low (20%-50%) overall efficiency of use of fertilizer N, sometimes coupled with heavy use in intensively-farmed areas (for example in parts of China), losses of fertilizer N from agricultural land are expected to be high. Part of the N lost is thought to cause pollution of the atmosphere and water resources. A sub-regional approach, based on the FAO Agroecological Zone (AEZ) concept, has the potential to provide meaningful assessments of the agricultural and environmental dimensions of N. The AEZ concept can also provide the rationale for locating Sub-regional Centers of the International Nitrogen Initiative (INI) by basing the considerations, as far as practicable, on agroecological conditions. PMID:16512197

  17. Using agricultural practices information for multiscale environmental assessment of phosphorus risk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matos Moreira, Mariana; Lemercier, Blandine; Michot, Didier; Dupas, Rémi; Gascuel-Odoux, Chantal

    2015-04-01

    Phosphorus (P) is an essential nutrient for plant growth. In intensively farmed areas, excessive applications of animal manure and mineral P fertilizers to soils have raised both economic and ecological concerns. P accumulation in agricultural soils leads to increased P losses to surface waterbodies contributing to eutrophication. Increasing soil P content over time in agricultural soils is often correlated with agricultural practices; in Brittany (NW France), an intensive livestock farming region, soil P content is well correlated with animal density (Lemercier et al.,2008). Thus, a better understanding of the factors controlling P distribution is required to enable environmental assessment of P risk. The aim of this study was to understand spatial distribution of extractable (Olsen method) and total P contents and its controlling factors at the catchment scale in order to predict P contents at regional scale (Brittany). Data on soil morphology, soil tests (including P status, particles size, organic carbon…) for 198 punctual positions, crops succession since 20 years, agricultural systems, field and animal manure management were obtained on a well-characterized catchment (ORE Agrhys, 10 km²). A multivariate analysis with mixed quantitative variables and factors and a digital soil mapping approach were performed to identify variables playing a significant role in soil total and extractable P contents and distribution. Spatial analysis was performed by means of the Cubist model, a decision tree-based algorithm. Different scenarios were assessed, considering various panels of predictive variables: soil data, terrain attributes derived from digital elevation model, gamma-ray spectrometry (from airborne geophysical survey) and agricultural practices information. In the research catchment, mean extractable and total P content were 140.0 ± 63.4 mg/kg and 2862.7 ± 773.0 mg/kg, respectively. Organic and mineral P inputs, P balance, soil pH, and Al contents were

  18. Grassland agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture in grassland environments is facing multiple stresses from: shifting demographics, declining and fragmented agricultural landscapes, declining environmental quality, variable and changing climate, volatile and increasing energy costs, marginal economic returns, and globalization. Degrad...

  19. Assessment of nitrogen ceilings for Dutch agricultural soils to avoid adverse environmental impacts.

    PubMed

    de Vries, W; Kros, H; Oenema, O; Erisman, J W

    2001-11-01

    In the Netherlands, high traffic density and intensive animal husbandry have led to high emissions of reactive nitrogen (N) into the environment. This leads to a series of environmental impacts, including: (1) nitrate (NO3) contamination of drinking water, (2) eutrophication of freshwater lakes, (3) acidification and biodiversity impacts on terrestrial ecosystems, (4) ozone and particle formation affecting human health, and (5) global climate change induced by emissions of N2O. Measures to control reactive N emissions were, up to now, directed towards those different environmental themes. Here we summarize the results of a study to analyse the agricultural N problem in the Netherlands in an integrated way, which means that all relevant aspects are taken into account simultaneously. A simple N balance model was developed, representing all crucial processes in the N chain, to calculate acceptable N inputs to the farm (so-called N ceiling) and to the soil surface (application in the field) by feed concentrates, organic manure, fertiliser, deposition, and N fixation. The N ceilings were calculated on the basis of critical limits for NO 3 concentrations in groundwater, N concentrations in surface water, and ammonia (NH3) emission targets related to the protection of biodiversity of natural areas. Results show that in most parts of the Netherlands, except the western and the northern part, the N ceilings are limited by NH 3 emissions, which are derived from critical N loads for nature areas, rather than limits for both ground- and surface water. On the national scale, the N ceiling ranges between 372 and 858 kton year(-1) depending on the choice of critical limits. The current N import is 848 kton year(-1). A decrease of nearly 60% is needed to reach the ceilings that are necessary to protect the environment against all adverse impacts of N pollution from agriculture. PMID:12805837

  20. Environmental impacts of modern agricultural technology diffusion in Bangladesh: an analysis of farmers' perceptions and their determinants.

    PubMed

    Rahman, Sanzidur

    2003-06-01

    Farmers' perception of the environmental impacts of modern agricultural technology diffusion and factors determining such awareness were examined using survey data from 21 villages in three agro-ecological regions of Bangladesh. Results reveal that farmers are well aware of the adverse environmental impacts of modern agricultural technology, although their awareness remains confined within visible impacts such as soil fertility, fish catches, and health effects. Their perception of intangible impacts such as, toxicity in water and soils is weak. Level and duration of modern agricultural technology adoption directly influence awareness of its adverse effects. Education and extension contacts also play an important role in raising awareness. Awareness is higher among farmers in developed regions, fertile locations and those with access to off-farm income sources. Promotion of education and strengthening extension services will boost farmers' environmental awareness. Infrastructure development and measures to replenish depleting soil fertility will also play a positive role in raising awareness. PMID:12781758

  1. Trace elements assessment in agricultural and desert soils of Aswan area, south Egypt: Geochemical characteristics and environmental impacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darwish, Mohamed Abdallah Gad; Pöllmann, Hebert

    2015-12-01

    Determination of chemical elements, Al, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Mo, Ni, P, Pb, Sc, Sr, Ti, Y, and Zn have been performed in agricultural and desert soils and alfalfa (Medicago sativa) at Aswan area. Consequently, the pollution indices, univariate and multivariate statistical methods have been applied, in order to assess the geochemical characteristics of these elements and their impact on soil environmental quality and plant, and to reach for their potential input sources. The investigation revealed that the mean and range values of all element concentrations in agricultural soil are higher than those in desert soil. Furthermore, the agricultural soil displayed various degrees of enrichment and pollution of Cd, Zn, Mo, Co, P, Ti, Pb. The geochemical pattern of integrated pollution indices gave a clear image of extreme and strong pollution in the agricultural soil stations, their poor quality with high risk to human health and considered as a tocsin for an alert. In contrast, the desert soil is the good environmental quality and safe for plant, animal and human health. Alfalfa is tolerant plant and considered as a biomarker for P and Mo in polluted agricultural soil. Four geochemical associations of analyzing elements in agricultural soil and three ones in desert soil have been generated, and their enhancements were essentially caused by various anthropogenic activities and geogenic sources. The investigation also revealed that the broad extended desert soil is fruitful and promising as cultivable lands for agricultural processes in the futures.

  2. Perceived and actual environmental benefits of the Los Angeles urban forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pataki, D. E.; McCarthy, H. R.

    2011-12-01

    There has been a widespread movement to plant more trees and increase canopy cover in cities throughout the United States, in order to enhance ecosystem services provided by urban forests. The city of Los Angeles has been engaged in a widespread tree planting program with the goal of increasing tree cover, particularly in low income neighborhoods. However, the Los Angeles urban forest is almost entirely non-native, located predominately in former semi-arid shrublands and grasslands. We used multiple approaches to evaluate environmental costs and benefits of urban trees in Los Angeles, both as they are perceived by local residents, as well as actual physical impacts of urban tree processes on the environment. We conducted an internet survey of attitudes and preferences for specific tree functional types, ecosystem services, and potential costs. We also directly measured urban forest structure and function including species and functional biodiversity, transpiration, basal area increments, hydraulic architecture, and leaf gas exchange. We translated these processes into categories of ecosystem services and costs such as water use, latent heat fluxes, water use efficiency, growth rates, sensitivity to drought stress, and aesthetic traits (flowering, fruiting, etc.). We found that provision of shade by urban trees is highly valued by local residents, and in fact, the urban forest has a significant impact on surface temperatures. Aesthetics benefits are also commonly cited as desirable traits. Although aesthetic and other cultural ecosystem services are difficult to quantify, we found spatial patterns in aesthetic traits influenced by neighborhood socioeconomic variables. Local residents seemed less concerned about the water use of irrigated urban trees, but we found significant rates of transpiration in urban trees and forest plots depending on species that may be important in the local hydrologic budget, which is increasingly constrained by water shortages. There was

  3. Quantify the energy and environmental benefits of implementing energy-efficiency measures in China’s iron and steel production

    SciTech Connect

    Ma, Ding; Chen, Wenying; Xu, Tengfang

    2015-08-21

    As one of the most energy-, emission- and pollution-intensive industries, iron and steel production is responsible for significant emissions of greenhouse gas (GHG) and air pollutants. Although many energy-efficiency measures have been proposed by the Chinese government to mitigate GHG emissions and to improve air quality, lacking full understanding of the costs and benefits has created barriers against implementing these measures widely. This paper sets out to advance the understanding by addressing the knowledge gap in costs, benefits, and cost-effectiveness of energy-efficiency measures in iron and steel production. Specifically, we build a new evaluation framework to quantify energy benefits and environmental benefits (i.e., CO2 emission reduction, air-pollutants emission reduction and water savings) associated with 36 energy-efficiency measures. Results show that inclusion of benefits from CO2 and air-pollutants emission reduction affects the cost-effectiveness of energy-efficiency measures significantly, while impacts from water-savings benefits are moderate but notable when compared to the effects by considering energy benefits alone. The new information resulted from this study should be used to augment future programs and efforts in reducing energy use and environmental impacts associated with steel production.

  4. Quantify the energy and environmental benefits of implementing energy-efficiency measures in China’s iron and steel production

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Ma, Ding; Chen, Wenying; Xu, Tengfang

    2015-08-21

    As one of the most energy-, emission- and pollution-intensive industries, iron and steel production is responsible for significant emissions of greenhouse gas (GHG) and air pollutants. Although many energy-efficiency measures have been proposed by the Chinese government to mitigate GHG emissions and to improve air quality, lacking full understanding of the costs and benefits has created barriers against implementing these measures widely. This paper sets out to advance the understanding by addressing the knowledge gap in costs, benefits, and cost-effectiveness of energy-efficiency measures in iron and steel production. Specifically, we build a new evaluation framework to quantify energy benefits andmore » environmental benefits (i.e., CO2 emission reduction, air-pollutants emission reduction and water savings) associated with 36 energy-efficiency measures. Results show that inclusion of benefits from CO2 and air-pollutants emission reduction affects the cost-effectiveness of energy-efficiency measures significantly, while impacts from water-savings benefits are moderate but notable when compared to the effects by considering energy benefits alone. The new information resulted from this study should be used to augment future programs and efforts in reducing energy use and environmental impacts associated with steel production.« less

  5. Assessing the environmental costs and benefits of plantations under future carbon pricing scenarios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, R. B.; Barrett, D. J.; Farley, K.; Guenther, A.; Jobbágy, E. G.; Murray, B. C.; McCarl, B. A.; Schlesinger, W. H.

    2004-12-01

    Carbon sequestration programs are gaining attention globally as a means to offset increasing fossil fuel emissions and atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations. We are examining scenarios of C sequestration in four regions of the world: the U.S., South America, China, and Australia. The analysis uses economic models to predict where the plantations will be grown and then categorizes the other biogeochemical changes that will likely occur. The goals of the project include: 1) Evaluating the assumptions behind C sequestration programs for plantations, including the importance of rotation rates, a full accounting of carbon costs (e.g., planting and site preparation), and how the C would be stored and safeguarded. 2) Examining the scale of the process needed to make a substantial contribution to offset fossil fuel emissions (see below). The scenario we have chosen to evaluate is one that addresses the consequences of storing 1 PgC yr-1 for 50 years. 3) Determining and summarizing the evidence for other biogeochemical changes that will likely occur. Some of the factors to be evaluated include soil acidification, changes in water fluxes and water-table dynamics, nutrient losses, changes in soil fauna and biodiversity, volatile organic carbon emissions, and erosion. 4) A final goal of the project is to make concrete recommendations for where plantations may be the most beneficial in terms of C storage and other environmental benefits, such as the amelioration of salinity and groundwater upwelling in Australia.

  6. Benefits and disadvantages of self-regulation of environmental noise from military training

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luz, George A.

    2002-05-01

    In a 1981 Executive decision, the Administration's Office of Management and Budget (OMB) told the Environmental Protection Agency to end funding of the Office of Noise Abatement and Control (ONAC). This decision, coupled with a specific exemption for military equipment contained in the Noise Control Act of 1972, ensured that the military departments would be self-regulating in regard to noise. This self-regulation for noise stands in contrast to the external regulation of other pollutants, such as air and water emissions. Two possible disadvantages of self-regulation are (1) reduced funding for noise management compared with funding for externally regulated pollutants, and (2) lack of an independent and external set of standards for determining acceptable limits on community noise exposure. Three possible benefits are (1) avoiding the costs of mitigating trivial violations of external standards, (2) maintaining a long-standing policy of preventing noise problems through land use planning, and (3) enabling negotiated solutions between installations and their neighboring communities. The paper ends with an examination of a negotiated solution for a community subjected to noise from the detonation of obsolete ammunition.

  7. Change in Environmental Benefits of Urban Land Use and Its Drivers in Chinese Cities, 2000-2010.

    PubMed

    Song, Xiaoqing; Chang, Kang-Tsung; Yang, Liang; Scheffran, Jürgen

    2016-01-01

    Driven by rising income and urban population growth, China has experienced rapid urban expansion since the 1980s. Urbanization can have positive effects on the urban environment; however, improvement of urban environment quality, especially its divergence between relatively developed and undeveloped cities in China, is currently a rather rudimentary and subjective issue. This study analyzed urban environmental benefits among China's prefectural cities based on their structure of urban land use in 2000 and 2010. First, we divided 347 prefectural cities into two groups, 81 coastal and capital cities in the relatively developed group (RD) and 266 other prefectural cities in the undeveloped group (RP). Then, we defined three areas of urban environmental benefits, including green infrastructure, industrial upgrade, and environmental management, and developed an assessment index system. Results showed that all prefectural cities saw improvement in urban environmental quality in 2000-2010. Although the RD cities had higher income and more population growth, they had less improvement than the RP cities during the same period. We also found that demographic and urban land agglomeration among RD cities restrained green infrastructure expansion, making green infrastructure unsuitable as a permanent solution to environmental improvement. It is therefore urgent for China to promote balanced improvement among the three areas of urban environmental benefits and between the RD and RP cities through regional differentiation policies. PMID:27240386

  8. Change in Environmental Benefits of Urban Land Use and Its Drivers in Chinese Cities, 2000–2010

    PubMed Central

    Song, Xiaoqing; Chang, Kang-tsung; Yang, Liang; Scheffran, Jürgen

    2016-01-01

    Driven by rising income and urban population growth, China has experienced rapid urban expansion since the 1980s. Urbanization can have positive effects on the urban environment; however, improvement of urban environment quality, especially its divergence between relatively developed and undeveloped cities in China, is currently a rather rudimentary and subjective issue. This study analyzed urban environmental benefits among China’s prefectural cities based on their structure of urban land use in 2000 and 2010. First, we divided 347 prefectural cities into two groups, 81 coastal and capital cities in the relatively developed group (RD) and 266 other prefectural cities in the undeveloped group (RP). Then, we defined three areas of urban environmental benefits, including green infrastructure, industrial upgrade, and environmental management, and developed an assessment index system. Results showed that all prefectural cities saw improvement in urban environmental quality in 2000–2010. Although the RD cities had higher income and more population growth, they had less improvement than the RP cities during the same period. We also found that demographic and urban land agglomeration among RD cities restrained green infrastructure expansion, making green infrastructure unsuitable as a permanent solution to environmental improvement. It is therefore urgent for China to promote balanced improvement among the three areas of urban environmental benefits and between the RD and RP cities through regional differentiation policies. PMID:27240386

  9. Environmental impact of recycling nutrients in human excreta to agriculture compared with enhanced wastewater treatment.

    PubMed

    Spångberg, J; Tidåker, P; Jönsson, H

    2014-09-15

    Human excreta are potential sources of plant nutrients, but are today usually considered a waste to be disposed of. The requirements on wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) to remove nitrogen and phosphorus are increasing and to meet these requirements, more energy and chemicals are needed by WWTPs. Separating the nutrient-rich wastewater fractions at source and recycling them to agriculture as fertiliser is an alternative to removing them at the WWTP. This study used life cycle assessment methodology to compare the environmental impact of different scenarios for recycling the nutrients in the human excreta as fertiliser to arable land or removing them in an advanced WWTP. Three scenarios were assessed. In blackwater scenario, blackwater was source-separated and used as fertiliser. In urine scenario, the urine fraction was source-separated and used as fertiliser and the faecal water treated in an advanced WWTP. In NP scenario, chemical fertiliser was used as fertiliser and the toilet water treated in an advanced WWTP. The emissions from the WWTP were the same for all scenarios. This was fulfilled by the enhanced reduction in the WWTP fully removing the nutrients from the excreta that were not source-separated in the NP and urine scenarios. Recycling source-separated wastewater fractions as fertilisers in agriculture proved efficient for conserving energy and decreasing global warming potential (GWP). However, the blackwater and urine scenarios had a higher impact on potential eutrophication and potential acidification than the WWTP-chemical fertiliser scenario, due to large impacts by the ammonia emitted from storage and after spreading of the fertilisers. The cadmium input to the arable soil was very small with urine fertiliser. Source separation and recycling of excreta fractions as fertiliser thus has potential for saving energy and decreasing GWP emissions associated with wastewater management. However, for improved sustainability, the emissions from storage and

  10. Influence of Environmental Factors on Biotic Responses to Nutrient Enrichment in Agricultural Streams1

    PubMed Central

    Maret, Terry R; Konrad, Christopher P; Tranmer, Andrew W

    2010-01-01

    The influence of environmental factors on biotic responses to nutrients was examined in three diverse agricultural regions of the United States. Seventy wadeable sites were selected along an agricultural land use gradient while minimizing natural variation within each region. Nutrients, habitat, algae, macroinvertebrates, and macrophyte cover were sampled during a single summer low-flow period in 2006 or 2007. Continuous stream stage and water temperature were collected at each site for 30 days prior to sampling. Wide ranges of concentrations were found for total nitrogen (TN) (0.07-9.61 mg/l) and total phosphorus (TP) (<0.004-0.361 mg/l), but biotic responses including periphytic and sestonic chlorophyll a (RCHL and SCHL, respectively), and percent of stream bed with aquatic macrophyte (AQM) growth were not strongly related to concentrations of TN or TP. Pearson’s coefficient of determination (R2) for nutrients and biotic measures across all sites ranged from 0.08 to 0.32 and generally were not higher within each region. The biotic measures (RCHL, SCHL, and AQM) were combined in an index to evaluate eutrophic status across sites that could have different biotic responses to nutrient enrichment. Stepwise multiple regression identified TN, percent canopy, median riffle depth, and daily percent change in stage as significant factors for the eutrophic index (R2 = 0.50, p < 0.001). A TN threshold of 0.48 mg/l was identified where eutrophic index scores became less responsive to increasing TN concentrations, for all sites. Multiple plant growth indicators should be used when evaluating eutrophication, especially when streams contain an abundance of macrophytes. PMID:22457568

  11. African agricultural subsidy impacts food security, poverty, drought tolerance, and environmental quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galford, G. L.; Palm, C.; DeFries, R. S.; Nziguheba, G.; Droppelmann, K.; Nkonya, E.; Michelson, H.; Clark, C.; Kathewera, F.; Walsh, M.

    2011-12-01

    Malawi has spearheaded an unprecedented policy change in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) since 2005 when it started a widespread agricultural inputs subsidy program (AISP) targeting small farmer maize production with mineral fertilizer and improved seeds. Since then, the mean N fertilizer load has increased significantly, from ~ 0 to a modest 35 kg N/ha or 7 times greater than SSA's average 5 kg N/ha average. During the tenure of AISP, Malawi has transitioned from a food aid recipient to an exporter. Maize yields each year of AISP are double the long-term average (0.8 tons/ha/yr, 1960-2005). In 2007, subsidy inputs combined with good rains led to of an unprecedented increase in national average yields of 2.7 tons/ha. National-scale assessments covering, agriculture, poverty, and environment such as this one are required to understand the trade-offs between development, climate and the environment. Environmentally, N2O emissions from fertilizer are a concern. First order estimates put emissions from AISP fertilizers at 2,600 Mg N2O/year (0.81 Tg CO2-e). While globally insignificant, these emissions may be equivalent to 16% of Malawi's annual fossil fuel and deforestation emissions. However, our partial nutrient budgets indicate that crop removal is still higher than N applied and therefore little loss of N to the environment is expected. Mineral fertilizers are a rapid first step to increase soil N after 40 years of serious depletion. Once restored, the soils will support robust agroforestry and other forms of organic inputs produced on-farm. Fertilizer use increases carbon sequestration on agricultural soils and reduces pressure to clear forests, which may partially compensate for the N2O emissions. We find evidence that AISP significantly increases food security and mitigates the impacts of drought on maize production. This is the first work linking the distribution of fertilizer subsidies to local crop yields using government records, remotely-sensed time series of

  12. Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender simulation of three adjacent row-crop watersheds in the claypan region

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Agricultural Policy Environmental Extender (APEX) model can simulate crop yields, and pollutant loadings in whole farms or small watersheds with variety of management practices. The study objectives were to identify sensitive parameters and parameterize, calibrate and validate the APEX model fo...

  13. Aggregating the benefits of environmental improvements: distance-decay functions for use and non-use values.

    PubMed

    Hanley, Nick; Schläpfer, Felix; Spurgeon, James

    2003-07-01

    One of the main problems in using environmental cost-benefit analysis is deciding on the relevant population: whose benefits should we count? This is important since aggregate benefits depend on both per-person benefit and the number of beneficiaries. Yet this latter term is often hard to evaluate. Distance-decay functions are one way of addressing this problem. In this paper, we present estimates of distance-decay functions for a particular environmental improvement, namely a reduction in low flow problems on the River Mimram in Southern England. We do this both for users and non-users, in the context of a contingent valuation study of the benefits of improving low flow conditions. We test whether distance-decay effects for mean Willingness to Pay are stronger for a single environmental good (the River Mimram, in this case) than for a more inclusive set (here, all rivers in Thames region which suffer from low flow problems). Finally, we explore the impact on part-whole bias, in terms of the relationship between WTP for an individual site and WTP for a more inclusive group of sites, of allowing for distance-decay effects. PMID:12837258

  14. AN INNOVATIVE SYSTEM FOR BIOREMEDIATION OF AGRICULTURAL CHEMICALS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Agricultural chemicals (both inorganic and organic) in drainage discharge from watersheds have raised concerns about the quality of surface water resources. For example, hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico has been related to the nutrients discharging from agricultural watersheds...

  15. Effects of Vicarious Experiences of Nature, Environmental Attitudes, and Outdoor Recreation Benefits on Support for Increased Funding Allocations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kil, Namyun

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the effects of vicarious experiences of nature, environmental attitudes, and recreation benefits sought by participants on their support for funding of natural resources and alternative energy options. Using a national scenic trail user survey, results demonstrated that vicarious experiences of nature influenced environmental…

  16. Ammonia Emissions from Land-Applied Manure: Environmental and Economic Benefits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Ammonia volatilization is a major N loss process for surface-applied manures and urea fertilizers. The lost ammonia is important for both agricultural and non-agricultural ecosystems because it: a) is a direct loss of plant available N to the farmer, b) reduces the N:P ratio in manure, which accele...

  17. Agricultural Knowledge in Urban and Resettled Communities: Applications to Social-Ecological Resilience and Environmental Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shava, Soul; Krasny, Marianne E.; Tidball, Keith G.; Zazu, Cryton

    2010-01-01

    In light of globalising trends toward urbanisation and resettlement, we explore how agricultural knowledges may be adapted and applied among relocated people. Although indigenous and related forms of practice-based knowledge may be temporarily lost as people adopt commercial agricultural practices and switch to non-agricultural livelihoods, they…

  18. Environmental impacts of organic and conventional agricultural products--are the differences captured by life cycle assessment?

    PubMed

    Meier, Matthias S; Stoessel, Franziska; Jungbluth, Niels; Juraske, Ronnie; Schader, Christian; Stolze, Matthias

    2015-02-01

    Comprehensive assessment tools are needed that reliably describe environmental impacts of different agricultural systems in order to develop sustainable high yielding agricultural production systems with minimal impacts on the environment. Today, Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is increasingly used to assess and compare the environmental sustainability of agricultural products from conventional and organic agriculture. However, LCA studies comparing agricultural products from conventional and organic farming systems report a wide variation in the resource efficiency of products from these systems. The studies show that impacts per area farmed land are usually less in organic systems, but related to the quantity produced impacts are often higher. We reviewed 34 comparative LCA studies of organic and conventional agricultural products to analyze whether this result is solely due to the usually lower yields in organic systems or also due to inaccurate modeling within LCA. Comparative LCAs on agricultural products from organic and conventional farming systems often do not adequately differentiate the specific characteristics of the respective farming system in the goal and scope definition and in the inventory analysis. Further, often only a limited number of impact categories are assessed within the impact assessment not allowing for a comprehensive environmental assessment. The most critical points we identified relate to the nitrogen (N) fluxes influencing acidification, eutrophication, and global warming potential, and biodiversity. Usually, N-emissions in LCA inventories of agricultural products are based on model calculations. Modeled N-emissions often do not correspond with the actual amount of N left in the system that may result in potential emissions. Reasons for this may be that N-models are not well adapted to the mode of action of organic fertilizers and that N-emission models often are built on assumptions from conventional agriculture leading to even greater

  19. Pilot test of Pickliq{reg_sign} process to determine energy and environmental benefits & economic feasibility

    SciTech Connect

    Olsen, D.R.

    1997-07-13

    Green Technology Group (GTG) was awarded Grant No. DE-FG01-96EE 15657 in the amount of $99,904 for a project to advance GTG`s Pickliq{reg_sign} Process in the Copper and Steel Industries. The use of the Pickliq{reg_sign} Process can significantly reduce the production of waste acids containing metal salts. The Pickliq{reg_sign} Process can save energy and eliminate hazardous waste in a typical copper rod or wire mill or a typical steel wire mill. The objective of this pilot project was to determine the magnitude of the economic, energy and environmental benefits of the Pickliq{reg_sign} Process in two applications within the metal processing industry. The effectiveness of the process has already been demonstrated at facilities cleaning iron and steel with sulfuric acid. 9207 companies are reported to use sulfuric and hydrochloric acid in the USA. The USEPA TRI statistics of acid not recycled in the US is 2.4 x 10{sup 9} lbs (net) for Hydrochloric Acid and 2.0 x 10{sup 9} lbs (net) for Sulfuric Acid. The energy cost of not reclaiming acid is 10.7 x 10{sup 6} BTU/ton for Hydrochloric Acid and 21.6 x 10{sup 6} BTU/Ton for Sulfuric Acid. This means that there is a very large market for the application of the Pickliq{reg_sign} Process and the widespread use of the process will bring significant world wide savings of energy to the environment.

  20. The Agricultural Job Opportunity Benefits and Security Act of 1999. Hearing before the Subcommittee on Immigration of the Committee on the Judiciary. United States Senate, One Hundred Sixth Congress, Second Session (May 4, 2000).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Congress of the U.S., Washington, DC. Senate Committee on the Judiciary.

    This publication documents a congressional hearing on the Agricultural Job Opportunity Benefits and Security Act of 1999, which focuses on these three major concerns: the United States (US) is the home of a large and growing number of undocumented agricultural workers; the current H-2A Program is administratively burdensome, does not work well for…

  1. Crop and irrigation management strategies for saline-sodic soils and waters aimed at environmentally sustainable agriculture.

    PubMed

    Qadir, M; Oster, J D

    2004-05-01

    Irrigation has long played a key role in feeding the expanding world population and is expected to play a still greater role in the future. As supplies of good-quality irrigation water are expected to decrease in several regions due to increased municipal-industrial-agricultural competition, available freshwater supplies need to be used more efficiently. In addition, reliance on the use and reuse of saline and/or sodic drainage waters, generated by irrigated agriculture, seems inevitable for irrigation. The same applies to salt-affected soils, which occupy more than 20% of the irrigated lands, and warrant attention for efficient, inexpensive and environmentally acceptable management. Technologically and from a management perspective, a couple of strategies have shown the potential to improve crop production under irrigated agriculture while minimizing the adverse environmental impacts. The first strategy, vegetative bioremediation--a plant-assisted reclamation approach--relies on growing appropriate plant species that can tolerate ambient soil salinity and sodicity levels during reclamation of salt-affected soils. A variety of plant species of agricultural significance have been found to be effective in sustainable reclamation of calcareous and moderately sodic and saline-sodic soils. The second strategy fosters dedicating soils to crop production systems where saline and/or sodic waters predominate and their disposal options are limited. Production systems based on salt-tolerant plant species using drainage waters may be sustainable with the potential of transforming such waters from an environmental burden into an economic asset. Such a strategy would encourage the disposal of drainage waters within the irrigated regions where they are generated rather than exporting these waters to other regions via discharge into main irrigation canals, local streams, or rivers. Being economically and environmentally sustainable, these strategies could be the key to future

  2. Environmental setting of benchmark streams in agricultural areas of eastern Wisconsin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rheaume, S.J.; Stewart, J.S.; Lenz, B.N.

    1996-01-01

    Differences in land use/land cover, and riparian vegetation and instream habitat characteristics are presented. Summaries of field measurements of water temperature, pH, specific conductance and concentrations of dissolved oxygen, total organic plus ammonia nitrogen, dissolved ammonium, nitrate plus nitrte as nitrogen, total phosphorus, dissolved orthophosphate, and atrazine are listed. Concentrations of dissolved oxygen for the sampled streams ranged from 6 A to 14.3 and met the standards set by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) for supporting fish and aquatic life. Specific conductance ranged from 98 to 753 u,Scm with values highest in RHU's 1 and 3, where streams are underlain by carbonate bedrock. Median pH did not vary greatly among the four RHU's and ranged from 6.7 to 8.8 also meeting the WDNR standards. Concentrations of total organic plus ammonia nitrogen, dissolved ammonium, total phosphorus, and dissolved orthophosphate show little variation between streams and are generally low, compared to concentrations measured in agriculturally-affected streams in the same RHU's during the same sampling period. Concentrations of the most commonly used pesticide in the study unit, atrazine, were low in all streams, and most concentrations were below trn 0.1 u,g/L detection limit. Riparian vegetation for the benchmark streams were characterized by lowland species of the native plant communities described by John T. Curtis in the "Vegetation of Wisconsin." Based on the environmental setting and water-quality information collected to date, these streams appear to show minimal adverse effects from human activity.

  3. Cost-benefit analysis of water-reuse projects for environmental purposes: a case study for Spanish wastewater treatment plants.

    PubMed

    Molinos-Senante, M; Hernández-Sancho, F; Sala-Garrido, R

    2011-12-01

    Water reuse is an emerging and promising non-conventional water resource. Feasibility studies are essential tools in the decision making process for the implementation of water-reuse projects. However, the methods used to assess economic feasibility tend to focus on internal costs, while external impacts are relegated to unsubstantiated statements about the advantages of water reuse. Using the concept of shadow prices for undesirable outputs of water reclamation, the current study developed a theoretical methodology to assess internal and external economic impacts. The proposed methodological approach is applied to 13 wastewater treatment plants in the Valencia region of Spain that reuse effluent for environmental purposes. Internal benefit analyses indicated that only a proportion of projects were economically viable, while when external benefits are incorporated all projects were economically viable. In conclusion, the economic feasibility assessments of water-reuse projects should quantitatively evaluate economic, environmental and resource availability. PMID:21856067

  4. Characterization of endophytic bacteria from cucurbit fruits with potential benefits to agriculture in melons (Cucumis melo L.).

    PubMed

    Glassner, Hanoch; Zchori-Fein, Einat; Compant, Stéphane; Sessitsch, Angela; Katzir, Nurit; Portnoy, Vitaly; Yaron, Sima

    2015-07-01

    Endophytes are microorganisms that mainly colonize vegetative parts, but are also found in reproductive and disseminating organs, and may have beneficial characteristics. To identify microorganisms associated with the agriculturally important family, Cucurbitaceae, endophytes were initially determined in fruits of Cucumis melo Reticulatus Group 'Dulce' by a cultivation-independent approach based on fluorescence in situ hybridization using double labeling of oligonucleotide probes. Alpha-, Beta-, Gammaproteobacteria, Firmicutes and Actinobacteria were localized inside the fruits. Culturable bacteria were further isolated and identified from fruit tissues of 'Dulce', from fruits of other cultivated and wild-field-grown Cucurbitaceae, and from wild fruits growing under natural conditions. Low densities of culturable bacteria were detected in the investigated fruits, especially in four out of the five wild species, regardless of their growing environment. Substantial differences were observed between the wild and cultivated cucurbit taxa in regard to the number of colonized fruits as well as the type of endophytes. Bacillus was the most dominant genus of endophytes colonizing fruits of Cucurbitaceae. The antagonistic effects of isolated endophytes were assessed against cucurbit disease agents in dual-culture assays. Several bacterial isolates exhibited antagonistic properties against the tested plant pathogens. The identified bacteria may be useful for protecting plants not only in the field, but also for post-harvest. PMID:26183916

  5. Experiential Benefits, Place Meanings, and Environmental Setting Preferences Between Proximate and Distant Visitors to a National Scenic Trail

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kil, Namyun; Holland, Stephen M.; Stein, Taylor V.

    2015-05-01

    Effective management of conserved natural areas often requires a good understanding of recreation visitors who possess various values for those areas. This study examined differences in experiential benefits sought, place meanings, and environmental setting preferences between proximate and distant visitors to a publicly managed national scenic trail, which transects a variety of conserved public lands. Data were collected using on-site post-hike interviews with visitors at low, moderate, and high use trailheads. Proximate visitors sought mental and physical health more strongly than distant visitors, while distant visitors sought environmental exploration more strongly than proximate visitors. No significant difference in family bonding and achievement benefits existed between the two groups. Meanings related to place dependence, family identity, community identity, and place identity were more strongly ascribed by proximate visitors, and both groups rated ecological integrity meanings highly. Distant visitors showed stronger tendencies toward preferring a lesser level of trail development, lower level of encounters with other groups, and higher level of natural landscapes, which indicated an inclination toward natural settings. These findings indicate a managerially relevant role of the degree of proximity to environmental resources on individuals' recreation behaviors, meanings ascribed to the resources and setting conditions. Understanding differences and similarities between groups dichotomized by proximity to natural resources should advance more effective management of recreation and benefit opportunities for diverse visitor groups.

  6. Experiential benefits, place meanings, and environmental setting preferences between proximate and distant visitors to a national scenic trail.

    PubMed

    Kil, Namyun; Holland, Stephen M; Stein, Taylor V

    2015-05-01

    Effective management of conserved natural areas often requires a good understanding of recreation visitors who possess various values for those areas. This study examined differences in experiential benefits sought, place meanings, and environmental setting preferences between proximate and distant visitors to a publicly managed national scenic trail, which transects a variety of conserved public lands. Data were collected using on-site post-hike interviews with visitors at low, moderate, and high use trailheads. Proximate visitors sought mental and physical health more strongly than distant visitors, while distant visitors sought environmental exploration more strongly than proximate visitors. No significant difference in family bonding and achievement benefits existed between the two groups. Meanings related to place dependence, family identity, community identity, and place identity were more strongly ascribed by proximate visitors, and both groups rated ecological integrity meanings highly. Distant visitors showed stronger tendencies toward preferring a lesser level of trail development, lower level of encounters with other groups, and higher level of natural landscapes, which indicated an inclination toward natural settings. These findings indicate a managerially relevant role of the degree of proximity to environmental resources on individuals' recreation behaviors, meanings ascribed to the resources and setting conditions. Understanding differences and similarities between groups dichotomized by proximity to natural resources should advance more effective management of recreation and benefit opportunities for diverse visitor groups. PMID:25579621

  7. Economic valuation of environmental benefits of removing pharmaceutical and personal care products from WWTP effluents by ozonation.

    PubMed

    Molinos-Senante, M; Reif, R; Garrido-Baserba, M; Hernández-Sancho, F; Omil, F; Poch, M; Sala-Garrido, R

    2013-09-01

    Continuous release of pharmaceutical and personal care products (PPCPs) present in effluents from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) is nowadays leading to the adoption of specific measures within the framework of the Directive 2000/60/EC (Water Framework Directive). The ozonation process, normally employed for drinking water production, has also proven its potential to eliminate PPCPs from secondary effluents in spite of their low concentrations. However, there is a significant drawback related with the costs associated with its implementation. This lack of studies is especially pronounced regarding the economic valuation of the environmental benefits associated to avoid the discharge of these pollutants into water bodies. For the first time the shadow prices of 5 PPCPs which are ethynilestradiol, sulfamethoxazole, diclofenac, tonalide and galaxolide from treated effluent using a pilot-scale ozonation reactor have been estimated. From non-sensitive areas their values are -73.73; -34.95; -42.20; -10.98; and -8.67 respectively and expressed in €/kg. They represent a proxy to the economic value of the environmental benefits arisen from undischarged pollutants. This paper contributes to value the environmental benefits of implementing post-treatment processes aimed to achieve the quality standards required by the Priority Substances Directive. PMID:23747556

  8. Synchronous Environmental and Cultural Change in the Emergence of Agricultural Economies 10,000 Years Ago in the Levant

    PubMed Central

    Borrell, Ferran; Junno, Aripekka; Barceló, Joan Antón

    2015-01-01

    The commonly held belief that the emergence and establishment of farming communities in the Levant was a smooth socio-economic continuum during the Pre-Pottery Neolithic (ca. 12,000-9,000 cal BP) with only rare minor disruptions is challenged by recently obtained evidence from this region. Using a database of archaeological radiocarbon dates and diagnostic material culture records from a series of key sites in the northern Levant we show that the hitherto apparent long-term continuity interpreted as the origins and consolidation of agricultural systems was not linear and uninterrupted. A major cultural discontinuity is observed in the archaeological record around 10,000 cal BP in synchrony with a Holocene Rapid Climate Change (RCC), a short period of climatic instability recorded in the Northern Hemisphere. This study demonstrates the interconnectedness of the first agricultural economies and the ecosystems they inhabited, and emphasizes the complex nature of human responses to environmental change during the Neolithic period in the Levant. Moreover, it provides a new environmental-cultural scenario that needs to be incorporated in the models reconstructing both the establishment of agricultural economy in southwestern Asia and the impact of environmental changes on human populations. PMID:26241310

  9. Synchronous Environmental and Cultural Change in the Emergence of Agricultural Economies 10,000 Years Ago in the Levant.

    PubMed

    Borrell, Ferran; Junno, Aripekka; Barceló, Joan Antón

    2015-01-01

    The commonly held belief that the emergence and establishment of farming communities in the Levant was a smooth socio-economic continuum during the Pre-Pottery Neolithic (ca. 12,000-9,000 cal BP) with only rare minor disruptions is challenged by recently obtained evidence from this region. Using a database of archaeological radiocarbon dates and diagnostic material culture records from a series of key sites in the northern Levant we show that the hitherto apparent long-term continuity interpreted as the origins and consolidation of agricultural systems was not linear and uninterrupted. A major cultural discontinuity is observed in the archaeological record around 10,000 cal BP in synchrony with a Holocene Rapid Climate Change (RCC), a short period of climatic instability recorded in the Northern Hemisphere. This study demonstrates the interconnectedness of the first agricultural economies and the ecosystems they inhabited, and emphasizes the complex nature of human responses to environmental change during the Neolithic period in the Levant. Moreover, it provides a new environmental-cultural scenario that needs to be incorporated in the models reconstructing both the establishment of agricultural economy in southwestern Asia and the impact of environmental changes on human populations. PMID:26241310

  10. 7 CFR 2902.8 - Determining life cycle costs, environmental and health benefits, and performance.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... analytical approaches: The BEES analytical tool along with the qualifications of the independent testing... standard for evaluating and reporting on environmental performance of biobased products D7075. Both...

  11. Lessons in Learning: Making the Environmental Grade--The Benefits of Going Green in the Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Canadian Council on Learning, 2009

    2009-01-01

    Over the past two decades, public interest in environmental issues has risen dramatically and stories about the environment are regularly featured on the front page of newspapers and are the focus of successful documentary films. Today, environmental education has become an element of many provincial curricula, with the understanding that young…

  12. Environmental Globalization, Organizational Form, and Expected Benefits from Protected Areas in Central America

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pfeffer, Max J.; Schelhas, John W.; Meola, Catherine

    2006-01-01

    Environmental globalization has led to the implementation of conservation efforts like the creation of protected areas that often promote the interests of core countries in poorer regions. The creation of protected areas in poor areas frequently creates tensions between human needs like food and shelter and environmental conservation. Support for…

  13. Balancing the health benefits and environmental risks of pharmaceuticals: Diclofenac as an example.

    PubMed

    Acuña, V; Ginebreda, A; Mor, J R; Petrovic, M; Sabater, S; Sumpter, J; Barceló, D

    2015-12-01

    Pharmaceuticals are designed to improve human and animal health, but even the most beneficial pharmaceuticals might raise some questions concerning the consequences of exposure to non-target organisms. To illustrate this situation and using diclofenac as a case-study, we analyze global consumption and occurrence data to identify hot spots of consumption without occurrence data, review the scientific literature on the harmful environmental effects to determine whether the observed concentrations in freshwater are of environmental concern, summarize the current pharmaceutical and environmental policies to highlight policy gaps, and suggest a series of research and policy recommendations, which can be summarized as follows: we need to improve the current knowledge on occurrence in freshwaters to properly implement environmental policies (i), diclofenac might pose a risk to non-target organisms in freshwater (ii); the harmful effects that some pharmaceuticals may have on the environment are not always addressed by environmental policies (iii). PMID:26454833

  14. Environmental variables controlling nitric oxide :emissions from agricultural soils in the southeast united states

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sullivan, Lee J.; Moore, Thomas C.; Aneja, Viney P.; Robarge, Wayne P.; Pierce, Thomas E.; Geron, Chris; Gay, Bruce

    Fluxes of nitric oxide (NO) were measured during the summer of 1994 (12 July to 11 August) in the Upper Coastal Plain of North Carolina in a continuing effort to characterize NO emissions from intensively managed agricultural soils in the southeastern United States. Previous work during a similar time of year on the same soil type was characterized by severe moisture stress conditions. The summer of 1994 provided a more diverse weather pattern and as a result represented a set of measurements more typical of soil temperature and soil moisture relationships for the southeastern United States. In order to ascertain NO flux response to fertilization and crop type, measurements were made on fields with three distinct fertilizer practices and crop types, namely corn, cotton, and soybean. Average NO fluxes were 21.9 ± 18.6, 4.3 ± 3.7, and 2.1 ± 0.9 ng N m -2 s -1, respectively, for corn, cotton, and soybean. NO flux increased exponentially with soil temperature when soil water content was not limiting [> 30% Water Filled Pore Space (%WFPS)]. During conditions when soil water content was limiting, NO flux was inhibited and had no relationship with soil temperature. Above a value of 30% WFPS, increasing soil water content had no effect on NO emissions (the upper limit of %WFPS could not be estimated due to a lack of data in this regime). Below 30% WFPS, increasing soil moisture increased NO production and lower soil moistures led to decreased NO flux. Increased nitrogen fertilization rates led to higher NO fluxes. However, differences in physiological growth stages between crops confound extractable nitrogen values as decomposing root biomass in the mature corn crop added an undetermined amount of available nitrogen to the soil. Interactions between soil water content, fertilizer application, and soil temperature make it very difficult to predict day-to-day variations of NO flux from our data. There appears to be no simple relation between NO flux and the environmental

  15. Exploring the benefits of growing bioenergy crops to activate lead-contaminated agricultural land: a case study on sweet potatoes.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Shu-Fen; Huang, Chin-Yuan; Chen, Kuo-Lin; Lin, Sheng-Chien; Lin, Yung-Cheng

    2015-03-01

    Phytoremediation is the most environmentally friendly remediation technology for heavy metal contaminated soil. However, the phytoremediation approach requires a long time to yield results, and the plants used must be economically profitable to maintain the sustainability of the process. Because high levels of bioethanol can be produced from sweet potatoes, an experiment was conducted by planting sweet potatoes in a lead-contaminated site to observe their growth and lead-uptake capacity, thereby enabling the evaluation of the phytoremediation efficiency of sweet potatoes. The lead content in the soil was approximately 6000 mg kg(-1), and the phytoavailable Pb content was 1766 mg kg(-1). Three starch-rich sweet potato varieties, Tainung No. 10 (TNG-10), Tainung No. 31 (TNG-31), and Tainung No. 57 (TNG-57), were used in the experiment. The results indicated that TNG-10, TNG-31, and TNG-57 had fresh root tuber yields of 94.5, 133.0, and 47.5 ton ha(-1) year(-1), produced 9450, 13,297, and 4748 L ha(-1) year(-1) of bioethanol, and removed 2.68, 7.73, and 3.22 kg ha(-1) year(-1) of lead, respectively. TNG-31 yielded the highest bioethanol production and the highest lead removal in the lead-contaminated site. Therefore, implementing phytoremediation by planting TNG-31 would decrease lead content and generate income, thereby rendering the sustainable and applicable activation of contaminated soil possible. PMID:25716522

  16. Willow biomass-bioenergy industry development in New York: Sustainability and environmental benefits

    SciTech Connect

    White, E.H.; Robison, D.J.; Abrahamson, L.P.

    1996-12-31

    Biomass-for-bioenergy cropping and production systems based on willow (and poplar) planted and managed at high densities and short (3 to 4 year) coppice harvest cycles, providing fuel for co-firing with coal (or other types of energy conversion) can be economically, ecologically and environmentally sustainable. All of these areas are crucial to the successful commercialization of this biomass-bioenergy system. Current knowledge and ongoing research and development indicate that the production and utilization systems involved are environmentally and ecologically acceptable. Therefore two of the primary constraints to commercialization have been met. The remaining constraint is economic viability based on cost of production and use, the value of environmental externalities (such as atmospheric emissions), and potential government public policy actions to promote this system of providing a locally produced and renewable farm crop and fuel. Developments needed to overcome the economic constraints are known, and should be bolstered by the environmental and ecological quality of the system.

  17. Environmental benefits of advanced oil and gas exploration and production technology

    SciTech Connect

    1999-10-01

    THROUGHOUT THE OIL AND GAS LIFE CYCLE, THE INDUSTRY HAS APPLIED AN ARRAY OF ADVANCED TECHNOLOGIES TO IMPROVE EFFICIENCY, PRODUCTIVITY, AND ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE. THIS REPORT FOCUSES SPECIFICALLY ON ADVANCES IN EXPLORATION AND PRODUCTION (E&P) OPERATIONS.

  18. The environmental benefits of cellulosic energy crops at a landscape scale

    SciTech Connect

    Graham, R.L.; Liu, W.; English, B.C.

    1995-12-31

    The objective of this paper is to present a broad overview of the potential environmental impacts of biomass energy from energy crops--particularly the cellulosic energy crops current under development. For this discussion, the term energy crop refers to a crop grown primarily to create feedstock for either making biofuels such as ethanol or burning in a heat or electricity generation facility. Cellulosic energy crops are designed to be used in cellulose-based ethanol conversion processes (as opposed to starch or sugar-based ethanol conversion processes). As more cellulose can be produced per hectare of land than can sugar or starch, the cellulose-based ethanol conversion process is a more efficient sue of land for ethanol production. Assessing the environmental impacts of biomass energy from energy crops is complex because the environmental impact of using biomass for energy must be considered in the context of alternative energy options while the environmental impact of producing biomass from energy crops must be considered in the context of alternative land-uses. Using biomass-derived energy can reduce greenhouse gas emissions or increase them; growing biomass energy crops can enhance soil fertility or degrade it. Without knowing the context of the biomass energy, one can say little about its specific environmental impacts. The primary focus of this paper is an evaluation of the environmental impacts of growing cellulosic energy crops especially at the landscape or regional scale. However, to set the stage for this discussion, the authors begin by comparing the environmental advantages and disadvantages of biomass-derived energy relative to other energy alternatives such as coal, hydropower, nuclear power, oil/gasoline, natural gas and photovoltaics.

  19. Nitrogen Losses in Runoff from Row-cropped Watersheds: Environmental Benefits of Native Prairie Filter Strips

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, X.; Helmers, M. J.; Asbjornsen, H.; Kolka, R. K.; Tomer, M. D.

    2011-12-01

    Loss of nitrogen in runoff from agricultural landscapes is a serious problem in the Midwestern United States due to inappropriate/intensive management practices. Among other best management practices, vegetative filter strips have been effectively adopted to reduce pollutant transport with agricultural runoff. In this study, twelve ephemeral watersheds at the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge in Central Iowa were used to evaluate the effectiveness of native prairie filter strips (NPFS) in reducing total nitrogen (TN) and nitrate-N (NO3-N) loss from row-cropped watersheds. Small amounts of NPFS were incorporated at different locations within the watersheds in fall 2006 using a balanced incomplete block design. A no-till 2-yr corn-soybean rotation was adopted in nonperennial areas since spring 2007. Each watershed was instrumented with an H-flume, a flow-monitoring device, and an ISCO water sampler in 2007. Runoff samples during the growing season between 2007 and 2010 were analyzed for TN and NO3-N concentrations for each individual rainfall event. The 4-year mean annual TN loss for watersheds with NPFS was 6.9 kg ha-1, approximately 85% lower than TN loss from 100% row-cropped watersheds (47.7 kg ha-1). Mean annual NO3-N loss during the growing season was 4.2 and 1.3 kg ha-1 for the watersheds with and without NPFS, respectively. The results of this study suggest that incorporation of small amounts of NPFS within annual rowcrop systems could greatly reduce TN and NO3-N loss from agricultural watersheds.

  20. Agricultural Waste.

    PubMed

    Xue, Ling; Zhang, Panpan; Shu, Huajie; Chang, Chein-Chi; Wang, Renqing; Zhang, Shuping

    2016-10-01

    In recent years, the quantity of agricultural waste has been rising rapidly all over the world. As a result, the environmental problems and negative impacts of agricultural waste are drawn more and more attention. Therefore, there is a need to adopt proper approaches to reduce and reuse agricultural waste. This review presented about 200 literatures published in 2015 relating to the topic of agricultural waste. The review examined research on agricultural waste in 2015 from the following four aspects: the characterization, reuse, treatment, and management. Researchers highlighted the importance to reuse agricultural waste and investigated the potential to utilize it as biofertilizers, cultivation material, soil amendments, adsorbent, material, energy recycling, enzyme and catalyst etc. The treatment of agricultural waste included carbonization, biodegradation, composting hydrolysis and pyrolysis. Moreover, this review analyzed the differences of the research progress in 2015 from 2014. It may help to reveal the new findings and new trends in this field in 2015 comparing to 2014. PMID:27620093

  1. Who benefits from environmental policy? An environmental justice analysis of air quality change in Britain, 2001-2011

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitchell, Gordon; Norman, Paul; Mullin, Karen

    2015-10-01

    Air quality in Great Britain has improved in recent years, but not enough to prevent the European Commission (EC) taking legal action for non-compliance with limit values. Air quality is a national public health concern, with disease burden associated with current air quality estimated at 29 000 premature deaths per year due to fine particulates, with a further burden due to NO2. National small-area analyses showed that in 2001 poor air quality was much more prevalent in socio-economically deprived areas. We extend this social distribution of air quality analysis to consider how the distribution changed over the following decade (2001-2011), a period when significant efforts to meet EC air quality directive limits have been made, and air quality has improved. We find air quality improvement is greatest in the least deprived areas, whilst the most deprived areas bear a disproportionate and rising share of declining air quality including non-compliance with air quality standards. We discuss the implications for health inequalities, progress towards environmental justice, and compatibility of social justice and environmental sustainability objectives.

  2. Animal and industrial by-products management strategies for sustainable agricultural production system and environmental quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Repeated application of broiler (Gallus gallus domesticus) litter to agricultural lands often results in soil P and heavy metal accumulations, which may pose risks to water bodies. We evaluated six different application strategies on P, N and heavy metal losses from an established bermudagrass (Cyno...

  3. ENVIRONMENTAL VARIABLES CONTROLLING NITRIC OXIDE EMISSIONS FROM AGRICULTURAL SOILS IN THE SOUTHEAST UNITED STATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Fluxes of nitric oxide (NO) were measured during the summer of 1994 (12 July to 11 August) in the Upper Coastal Plain of North Carolina in a continuing effort to characterize NO emissions from intensively managed agricultural soils in the southeastern United States. Previous work...

  4. Energetics and environmental costs of agriculture in a dry tropical region of India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, V. P.; Singh, J. S.

    1992-07-01

    The present article, based on a study of five village ecosystems, assesses the energy efficiency of rain-fed agriculture in a dry tropical environment and the impact of agricultural activity on the surrounding natural ecosystems. Agronomic yield is insufficient to meet the food requirement of the human population, hence 11.5%-49.7% of the required amount of food grains are imported from the market. Energy requirements of five studied agroecosystems are subsidized considerably by the surrounding forest in the form of fodder and firewood. Natural ecosystems supply about 80%-95% of fodder needs and 81%-100% of fuelwood needs. The output-input ratio of agriculture indicated that, on average, 4.1 units of energy are expended to obtain one unit of agronomic energy. Of this, 3.9 units are supplied by the natural ecosystem. In addition, 38% of the extracted firewood is marketed. The illegal felling and lopping of trees result in ever-increasing concentric circles of forest destruction around the villages and together with excessive grazing results in savannization. The forests can be conserved by encouraging fuelwood plantations (0.7 ha/ha cultivated land) and developing village pastures (1.6 ha/ha cultivated land) and reducing the livestock numbers. Agricultural production in the region can be stabilized by introducing improved dry farming techniques such as intercropping, planned rainwater management, and adequate use of fertilizers.

  5. Nitrogen balance as an indicator of the environmental impact: towards sustainable agricultural production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Economics is a principle driver impacting management decisions in agricultural production systems. While increasing concern has focused on preserving the natural resource base to ensure continued support for future production, little emphasis has been placed on examining how drivers alter management...

  6. PARAMETERIZING GPFARM: AN AGRICULTURAL DECISION SUPPORT SYSTEM FOR INTEGRATING SCIENCE, ECONOMICS, RESOURCE USE, AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Few farmers and ranchers adopt agricultural software such as decision support systems (DSS). While numerous decision aids are available, most are too difficult for producers to use, exclude components (e.g., economic budgeting, weeds, multicriteria decision analysis) necessary for meaningful use on...

  7. Agricultural production and nutrient runoff in the Corn Belt: Assessing dynamic environmental performance

    EPA Science Inventory

    Agricultural production in the Corn Belt region of the Upper Mississippi River Basin (UMRB) remains a leading source of nitrogen runoff that contributes to the annual hypoxic 'Dead Zone' in the Gulf of Mexico. The rise of corn production, land conversion, and fertilizer use in re...

  8. Pest Management and Environmental Quality. Course 181. Correspondence Courses in Agriculture, Family Living and Community Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cole, Herbert, Jr.; And Others

    This publication is the course book for a correspondence course in pest control with the Pennsylvania State University. It contains basic information for agricultural producers on pest management and the proper and safe use of pesticides. The course consists of eleven lessons which can be completed at one's leisure. The first nine lessons contain…

  9. SUMMARY OF BIOLOGICAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING RESULTS FROM THE AGRICULTURAL HEALTH STUDY/PESTICIDE EXPOSURE STUDY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Agricultural Health Study (AHS) is a prospective epidemiologic study of pesticide applicators and spouses in Iowa and North Carolina. Exposure to 2,4-D or chlorpyrifos was measured for a subset of applicators and their families in the AHS Pesticide Exposure Study to assess...

  10. Applications of UAV imagery for agricultural and environmental research at the USDA Southeast Watershed Research Lab

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The ARS is the USDA's in-house scientific research agency, whose mission is to conduct research to "develop and transfer solutions to agricultural problems of high national priority..." This includes enhancing the natural resource base and the environment, a dimension of particular relevance to the ...

  11. Land application of organic residuals: Public health threat or environmental benefit

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Waste residuals consist of manure and biosolids produced by concentrated animal feeding operations and municipal waste water treatment plants. All wastes need to be disposed of in a proper manner, protecting public and environmental health, but also in a sustainable fashion to ensure that no system...

  12. VALUATION OF BENEFITS FROM ENVIRONMENTAL IMPROVEMENT IN U.S. COASTAL WATERS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The purpose of this study is to estimate willingness to pay for water quality improvements in coastal waters. The United States Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Water is responsible for regulating and monitoring national water quality. In order to make sound policy d...

  13. Development of clean technologies for management of wastes from pig production and their environmental benefits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Environmental and policy issues associated with swine production are specific for each region; however, regardless of location, these issues generally include (1) land application of manure and potential discharge of manure nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) and pathogenic bacteria to surface and g...

  14. Potential environmental benefits of feed additives and other strategies for ruminant production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Environmental pollution and food safety are two important concerns that impact ruminant production around the world. The growing public concern over chemical residues in animal-derived foods and threats of antibiotic-resistant bacteria have renewed interest in exploring safer alternatives to chemic...

  15. Environmental and socio-economic vulnerability of agricultural sector in Armenia.

    PubMed

    Melkonyan, Ani

    2014-08-01

    Being a mountainous country, Armenia has undergone different kinds of natural disasters, such as droughts, floods, and storms, which have a direct influence on economy and are expected to occur more frequently in terms of climate change, raising the need to estimate economic vulnerability especially in agricultural sector. Agriculture plays a great role in national economy of Armenia, with 21% share in Gross Domestic Production (GDP). For this reason, the estimation of agricultural resources of the country, their vulnerability towards current and future climate, and assessment of economical loss of the agricultural crop production due to climate change are the main goals of the given study. Crop productivity in dependence on climatic elements - temperature, radiation, precipitation, wind field, etc. has been estimated, further on interpolating these relations for future climate conditions using climate projections in the region for the time period of 2011-2040. Data on air temperature, precipitation, relative humidity, wind speed and direction for the period of 1966-2011 have been taken from 30 stations from the measuring network of Armenian State Hydrometeorological Service. Other climatic parameters like potential and actual evapotranspiration, soil temperature and humidity, field capacity, and wilting point have been calculated with the help of an AMBAV/AMBETTI (agroclimatic) model (German Weather Service). The results showed that temperature increase accompanied with evapotranspiration increase and water availability decrease especially in low and mid-low altitudes (where the main national crop production is centralized) caused a significant shift in the phenological phases of crops, which is very important information for effective farming dates, giving an opportunity to raise efficiency of agricultural production through minimizing the yield loss due to unfavorable climatic conditions. With the help of macroeconomical analysis of the crop market, it was

  16. Reconstructing a century of agricultural land use and drivers of change from social and environmental records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sangster, Heather; Smith, Hugh; Riley, Mark; Sellami, Haykel; Chiverrell, Richard; Boyle, John

    2016-04-01

    Changes to agricultural land use practices and climate represent serious challenges to the future management of rural landscapes. In Britain, the modern rural landscape may seem comparatively stable relative to the long history of human impact. However, there have been important changes linked to the intensification of agricultural practices during the last ca. 100 years and more recently improvements in land management designed to reduce impacts on land and water resources. Few studies attempt high-resolution spatial reconstruction of historic land use change, which is essential for understanding such human-environment interactions in the recent past. Specifically, the absence of detailed spatio-temporal records of agricultural land use/land cover change at the catchment-scale presents a challenge in assessing recent developments in land use policies and management. Here, we generate a high-resolution time-series of historic land use at the catchment-scale for hydrological modelling applications. Our reconstructions focus on three catchments in England ((1) Brotherswater (NE Lake District); (2) Crose Mere (Shropshire); (3) Loweswater (NW Lake District)) spanning a range of agricultural environments subject to different levels of land use change; from intensively-farmed lowlands to upland catchments subject to lower-intensity grazing. Temporal reconstructions of changes in land management practices and vegetation cover are based on historic aerial photography (1940s-2000s) and satellite-derived land cover maps (1990, 2000, and 2007), in combination with annual records of parish-level agricultural census data (1890s-1970s) and farmer interviews, in order to produce an integrated series of digital land cover and land practice maps. The datasets are coupled with composite temperature and precipitation series produced from a number of local stations. Combined, these spatio-temporal datasets allow a comprehensive assessment of land use and management change against the

  17. THE ENVIRONMENTAL COST OF REDUCING AGRICULTURAL FINE PARTICULATE (PM2.5) DUST EMISSIONS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Revisions to the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) were promulgated by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2006, reducing acceptable fine particulate (PM2.5) levels. Non-attainment findings are scheduled for release in 2010. State environmental protection agencies in state...

  18. Assessing the Health Impacts of Air Pollution Regulations Using BenMAP, the Environmental Benefits Mapping and Analysis Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hubbell, B.; McCubbin, D.; Hallberg, A.

    2003-12-01

    The U.S. EPA Office of Air and Radiation has developed BenMAP, the environmental Benefits Mapping and Analysis Program, a new software tool for estimating the health and environmental impacts of environmental regulations. BenMAP is the US EPA's premier tool for estimating benefits associated with air pollution reduction strategies, and has recently been used in evaluating US EPA's Proposed Non-Road Diesel Vehicle Standards and the proposed Clear Skies Act legislation. BenMAP is a geographic information system (GIS) that uses modeled and monitored air quality data combined with population forecasts to develop estimates of changes in community level exposure to ambient environmental pollution (currently ambient air pollution, e.g. ozone and PM). These estimated changes in exposure to ambient pollution are used as inputs to concentration-response functions derived from the epidemiological literature, along with data on baseline incidence of health effects, i.e. county level age and cause specific mortality rates. The resulting point estimates of changes in incidence of health effects, along with their associated uncertainty distributions (currently based on reported standard errors in the literature), are then multiplied by economic unit values (represented by distributions), i.e. the cost of a hospital admission, to derive dollar estimates of health benefits. BenMAP is unique in that it uses highly detailed census and health data matched with spatially detailed environmental quality data to estimate health benefits. The program can also provide estimates of the uncertainty associated with the estimated benefits. Other features of the program include the ability to pool results from multiple studies of the same endpoint, using fixed or random effects weights, or user supplied weights. BenMAP also incorporates functions to manipulate and combine information on environmental quality from many different sources. For the current version focusing on air pollution, these

  19. Environmental mitigation at hydroelectric projects. Volume 2, Benefits and costs of fish passage and protection

    SciTech Connect

    Francfort, J.E.; Rinehart, B.N.; Sommers, G.L.; Cada, G.F.; Jones, D.W.; Dauble, D.D.; Hunt, R.T.; Costello, R.J.

    1994-01-01

    This study examines envirorunental mitigation practices that provide upstream and downstream fish passage and protection at hydroelectric projects. The study includes a survey of fish passage and protection mitigation practices at 1,825 hydroelectric plants regulated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to determine frequencies of occurrence, temporal trends, and regional practices based on FERC regions. The study also describes, in general terms, the fish passage/protection mitigation costs at 50 non-Federal hydroelectric projects. Sixteen case studies are used to examine in detail the benefits and costs of fish passage and protection. The 16 case studies include 15 FERC licensed or exempted hydroelectric projects and one Federally-owned and-operated hydroelectric project. The 16 hydroelectric projects are located in 12 states and range in capacity from 400 kilowatts to 840 megawatts. The fish passage and protection mitigation methods at the case studies include fish ladders and lifts, an Eicher screen, spill flows, airburst-cleaned inclined and cylindrical wedgewire screens, vertical barrier screens, and submerged traveling screens. The costs, benefits, monitoring methods, and operating characteristics of these and other mitigation methods used at the 16 case studies are examined.

  20. The economic value of remote sensing information: a case study of agricultural production and groundwater vulnerability using applied environmental science and hydrogeospatial methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forney, W.; Bernknopf, R. L.; Mishra, S.; Raunikar, R. P.

    2011-12-01

    William M. Forney1*, Richard L. Bernknopf1, Shruti K. Mishra2, Ronald P. Raunikar1. 1=Western Geographic Science Center, US Geological Survey, Menlo Park, California. 2=Contractor, Western Geographic Science Center, US Geological Survey, Menlo Park, California *=Contact author, wforney@usgs.gov, 650-329-4237. Does remote sensing information provide economic benefits to society and can those benefits be valued? Can resource management and policy be better informed by coupling past and present earth observations with groundwater nitrate measurements? Using an integrated assessment approach, the USGS's research applies an established conceptual framework to answer these questions as well as estimate the value of information (VOI) for remote sensing imagery. The approach uses moderate resolution land imagery (MRLI) data from the Landsat and Advanced Wide Field Sensor satellites that has been classified by the National Agricultural Statistics Service into the Cropland Data Layer (CDL). Within the constraint of the US Environmental Protection Agency's public health threshold for potable groundwater resources, we model the relationship between a population of the CDL's land uses and the evolution of nitrate (NO3-) contamination of aquifers in a case study region in northeastern Iowa. Using source data from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the USGS's National Water Quality Assessment Program, the approach uses multi-scaled, environmental science models to address dynamic, biophysical process models of nitrogen fate and transport at specific sites (wells) and at landscape scale (35 counties) in order to assess groundwater vulnerability. In addition to the ecosystem service of potable groundwater, this effort focuses on particular agricultural goods and land uses: corn, soybeans and livestock manure management. Results of this four-year study will be presented, including: 1) the integrated models of the assessment approach, 2) mapping the range of vulnerabilities

  1. How to achieve benefit from mission-oriented research: lessons from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Naval Research Laboratory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Logar, N. J.

    2006-12-01

    Does the research performed by government mission agencies contribute to improved decision-making? Climate research within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has the stated goal of providing "optimal benefit" to decision makers on all levels, and the meteorology division of Department of Defense's Naval Research Laboratory promises research directed towards application. Assuming that research can lead to benefit for decision makers with minimal guidance can lead to irrelevance, wasted effort, and missed opportunities. Moving beyond the assumption leads to critical consideration of processes creating climate and meteorological science. I report the results of contextual mapping, of research on decision processes, and of interviews with agency scientists and users of science to evaluate their science regimes. In the case of the USDA scientists do target stakeholders through formal and informal mechanisms, but much of the science does not find use due to institutional constraints, political considerations, and disciplinary inertia. The research results will provide options for closing these policy gaps, such as higher-level stakeholder interaction and better representation of diverse interests. I apply the economic concept of supply and demand to describe where supply of science provides decision support that matches user demand, and where science policies might miss opportunities or mischaracterize research as useful to a specific user. This analysis leads to increased understanding of how factors such as the definition of scientific problems, hierarchies in science decision-making structures, quality control mechanisms beyond peer review, distribution of participants in the knowledge production enterprise, and social accountability guide the process of producing useful information.

  2. Tiny stowaways: analyzing the economic benefits of a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency permit regulating ballast water discharges.

    PubMed

    Lovell, Sabrina J; Drake, Lisa A

    2009-03-01

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has proposed permitting ballast water discharges--a benefit of which would be to reduce the economic damages associated with the introduction and spread of aquatic invasive species. Research on ship-borne aquatic invasive species has been conducted in earnest for decades, but determining the economic damages they cause remains troublesome. Furthermore, with the exception of harmful algal blooms, the economic consequences of microscopic invaders have not been studied, despite their potentially great negative effects. In this paper, we show how to estimate the economic benefits of preventing the introduction and spread of harmful bacteria, microalgae, and viruses delivered in U.S. waters. Our calculations of net social welfare show the damages from a localized incident, cholera-causing bacteria found in shellfish in the Gulf of Mexico, to be approximately $706,000 (2006$). On a larger scale, harmful algal species have the potential to be transported in ships' ballast tanks, and their effects in the United States have been to reduce commercial fisheries landings and impair water quality. We examine the economic repercussions of one bloom-forming species. Finally, we consider the possible translocation within the Great Lakes of a virus that has the potential to harm commercial and recreational fisheries. These calculations illustrate an approach to quantifying the benefits of preventing invasive aquatic microorganisms from controls on ballast water discharges. PMID:18853223

  3. Tiny Stowaways: Analyzing the Economic Benefits of a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Permit Regulating Ballast Water Discharges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lovell, Sabrina J.; Drake, Lisa A.

    2009-03-01

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has proposed permitting ballast water discharges—a benefit of which would be to reduce the economic damages associated with the introduction and spread of aquatic invasive species. Research on ship-borne aquatic invasive species has been conducted in earnest for decades, but determining the economic damages they cause remains troublesome. Furthermore, with the exception of harmful algal blooms, the economic consequences of microscopic invaders have not been studied, despite their potentially great negative effects. In this paper, we show how to estimate the economic benefits of preventing the introduction and spread of harmful bacteria, microalgae, and viruses delivered in U.S. waters. Our calculations of net social welfare show the damages from a localized incident, cholera-causing bacteria found in shellfish in the Gulf of Mexico, to be approximately 706,000 (2006). On a larger scale, harmful algal species have the potential to be transported in ships’ ballast tanks, and their effects in the United States have been to reduce commercial fisheries landings and impair water quality. We examine the economic repercussions of one bloom-forming species. Finally, we consider the possible translocation within the Great Lakes of a virus that has the potential to harm commercial and recreational fisheries. These calculations illustrate an approach to quantifying the benefits of preventing invasive aquatic microorganisms from controls on ballast water discharges.

  4. Updated estimates of earnings benefits from reduced exposure of children to environmental lead

    SciTech Connect

    Salkever, D.S.

    1995-07-01

    The recent and important study by Schwartz found that almost three-fourths of the benefits of reduced lead exposure in children are in the form of earnings gains (earnings losses avoided). New data on recent trends in returns to education and cognitive skills in the labor market suggest a need to revise this estimate upward. Based on an analysis of data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, the present study estimates that an upward revision of at least 50% (or $2.5 billion per annual birth cohort) is indicated. The study also finds evidence that percentage earnings gains are considerably larger for females than for males. 21 refs., 1 fig., 2 tabs.

  5. Environmental effects of agricultural conservation within the Fort Cobb, OK, Reservoir watershed.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In response to the 2002 Farm Bill, the Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) was initiated to assess and quantify the effects and benefits of USDA conservation programs. The Fort Cobb Reservoir watershed was selected for inclusion in the national CEAP Watershed Assessment Study because of h...

  6. Evolutionary or fragmented environmental policy making? coal, power, and agriculture in the Hunter Valley, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Day, Diana G.

    1988-05-01

    Intensified surface mining, power generation, and smelting operations in the Hunter River lowlands, NSW, Australia have posed numerous new environmental management problems. Legislative controls over water, soils, and land use management have been clearly insufficient and remain so. The complex range of environmental changes is challenging government agencies as well as coal developers. While water demands are increasing in the region the proportionally greatest competitors are power generation and irrigation. Comprehensive regional water quality assessment is inadequate and divided between a number of agencies with fragmentary interests. Coal development inquiries signal further controversy over appropriate management solutions and are an ongoing phenomenon in the region. The early 1980s resource boom has been followed by lower rates of economic growth, which have resulted in disparate agency responses to major ongoing environmental questions. While issue attention cycles are often remarkably short in environmental management, matters of water, land, and air quality require intensive and ongoing monitoring and policy development.

  7. Environmental Programs within the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vitzthum, Edward F.; Gold, Roger E.

    1987-01-01

    Describes the interdisciplinary activities of the extension unit known as the Office of Environmental Programs at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Focuses on the coordination and training involved in programs dealing with pest management and water quality. (TW)

  8. IDENTIFICATION OF PREDOMINANT ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS STRUCTURING STREAM MACROINVERTEBRATE COMMUNITIES WITHIN A LARGE AGRICULTURAL CATCHMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Patterns of macroinvertebrate community composition were examined in streams within a 40,000-km2 catchment in central Michigan, USA, to identify the major environmental gradients influencing community variation. griculture and associated clay and sandy soils predominated in much ...

  9. Measurement accuracy of stereovision systems based on CCD video-photographic equipment in application to agricultural and environmental surveys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menesatti, Paolo

    1996-12-01

    Artificial vision and image analysis are increasing their role in agriculture. Using systems based on stereoscopic vision it is possible to associate to the large images information, a three dimensional space reference. So it is possible to measure distances between vision system and any point of real observed scene or calculate relative positions between different subjects of the same image. The work evaluates the possibility, the capacity and the accuracy of stereovision system as possible application in environmental and agricultural survey. The analysis was performed theoretically in function of the characteristics of some image acquisition CCD equipment, existing on the market of video-photographic device, and considering different parameters of environmental situations (field of view width, linear distance - z - between video system and the subject). Good accuracy is obtainable also by a 'standard' system (500 pixels resolution) for a z distance of 100 m and 5 m distance of the two video equipment. For a similar situation with a high performance equipment (3060 pixel resolution), it is possible to obtain an accuracy of the centimeter rank.

  10. Wastewater garden--a system to treat wastewater with environmental benefits to community.

    PubMed

    Nair, Jaya

    2008-01-01

    Many communities and villages around the world face serious problems with lack of sanitation especially in disposing of the wastewater-black water and grey water from the houses, or wash outs from animal rearing sheds. Across the world diverting wastewater to the surroundings or to the public spaces are not uncommon. This is responsible for contaminating drinking water sources causing health risks and environmental degradation as they become the breeding grounds of mosquitoes and pathogens. Lack of collection and treatment facilities or broken down sewage systems noticed throughout the developing world are associated with this situation. Diverting the wastewater to trees and vegetable gardens was historically a common practice. However the modern world has an array of problems associated with such disposal such as generation of large quantity of wastewater, unavailability of space for onsite disposal or treatment and increase in population. This paper considers the wastewater garden as a means for wastewater treatment and to improve the vegetation and biodiversity of rural areas. This can also be implemented in urban areas in association with parks and open spaces. This also highlights environmental safety in relation to the nutrient, pathogen and heavy metal content of the wastewater. The possibilities of different types of integration and technology that can be adopted for wastewater gardens are also discussed. PMID:18701794

  11. Analysis of energetic and exergetic efficiency, and environmental benefits of biomass integrated gasification combined cycle technology.

    PubMed

    Mínguez, María; Jiménez, Angel; Rodríguez, Javier; González, Celina; López, Ignacio; Nieto, Rafael

    2013-04-01

    The problem of the high carbon dioxide emissions linked to power generation makes necessary active research on the use of biofuels in gas turbine systems as a promising alternative to fossil fuels. Gasification of biomass waste is particularly of interest in obtaining a fuel to be run in gas turbines, as it is an efficient biomass-to-biofuel conversion process, and an integration into a combined cycle power plant leads to a high performance with regard to energetic efficiency. The goal of this study was to carry out an energetic, exergetic and environmental analysis of the behaviour of an integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) plant fuelled with different kinds of biomass waste by means of simulations. A preliminary economic study is also included. Although a technological development in gasification technology is necessary, the results of simulations indicate a high technical and environmental interest in the use of biomass integrated gasification combined cycle (BioIGCC) systems for large-scale power generation from biomass waste. PMID:23444152

  12. Ancillary Benefits for Caregivers of Children with Asthma Participating in an Environmental Intervention Study to Alleviate Asthma Symptoms

    PubMed Central

    Kubzansky, Laura D.; Spengler, John D.; Levy, Jonathan I.

    2009-01-01

    Providing care for children with asthma can be demanding and time-intensive with far-reaching effects on caregivers’ lives. Studies have documented childhood asthma symptom reductions and improved asthma-related quality of life (AQOL) with indoor allergen-reducing environmental interventions. Few such studies, however, have considered ancillary benefits to caregivers or other family members. Ancillary benefits could be derived from child health improvements and reduced caregiving burden or from factors such as improved living environments or social support that often accompanies intensive residential intervention efforts. As part of the Boston Healthy Public Housing Initiative (HPHI), a longitudinal single-cohort intervention study of asthmatic children, we examined trends in caregivers’ quality of life related to their child’s asthma (caregiver AQOL) using monthly Juniper Caregiver Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaires (AQLQ) for 32 primary caregivers to 42 asthmatic children aged 4 to 17 years. Longitudinal analyses were used to examine caregiver AQOL trends and their relationship to the child’s AQOL, then to consider additional predictors of caregiver AQOL. Caregiver AQLQ improved significantly over the course of the study with overall improvements significantly correlated with child AQOL (p = 0.005). However, caregiver AQOL improved most in the months before environmental interventions, while children’s AQOL improved most in the months following. Time trends in caregiver AQOL, controlling for child AQOL, were not explained by available social support or caregiver stress measures. Our findings suggest potential participation effects not adequately captured by standard measures. Future environmental intervention studies should more formally consider social support and participation effects for both children and caregivers PMID:19184446

  13. Ancillary benefits for caregivers of children with asthma participating in an environmental intervention study to alleviate asthma symptoms.

    PubMed

    Clougherty, Jane E; Kubzansky, Laura D; Spengler, John D; Levy, Jonathan I

    2009-03-01

    Providing care for children with asthma can be demanding and time-intensive with far-reaching effects on caregivers' lives. Studies have documented childhood asthma symptom reductions and improved asthma-related quality of life (AQOL) with indoor allergen-reducing environmental interventions. Few such studies, however, have considered ancillary benefits to caregivers or other family members. Ancillary benefits could be derived from child health improvements and reduced caregiving burden or from factors such as improved living environments or social support that often accompanies intensive residential intervention efforts. As part of the Boston Healthy Public Housing Initiative (HPHI), a longitudinal single-cohort intervention study of asthmatic children, we examined trends in caregivers' quality of life related to their child's asthma (caregiver AQOL) using monthly Juniper Caregiver Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaires (AQLQ) for 32 primary caregivers to 42 asthmatic children aged 4 to 17 years. Longitudinal analyses were used to examine caregiver AQOL trends and their relationship to the child's AQOL, then to consider additional predictors of caregiver AQOL. Caregiver AQLQ improved significantly over the course of the study with overall improvements significantly correlated with child AQOL (p = 0.005). However, caregiver AQOL improved most in the months before environmental interventions, while children's AQOL improved most in the months following. Time trends in caregiver AQOL, controlling for child AQOL, were not explained by available social support or caregiver stress measures. Our findings suggest potential participation effects not adequately captured by standard measures. Future environmental intervention studies should more formally consider social support and participation effects for both children and caregivers. PMID:19184446

  14. Environmental Impacts of the Annual Agricultural Drawdown in Southern Miami-Dade County

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kearns, E. J.; Renshaw, A.; Bellmund, S.

    2008-05-01

    Water managers annually manipulate groundwater storage in Southern Miami-Dade County at the end of the wet season to support agricultural interests. The so-called "agricultural drawdown" in Southern Miami-Dade County involves a 0.8 ft (0.24 m) reduction in groundwater stages via the release of large volumes of water each fall to Biscayne Bay. An average of 21.4 billion gallons (65,800 ac-ft or 8.1x107 m3) of freshwater are released each year from the Biscayne Aquifer via the C-103 and C-102 canals during the drawdown in anticipation of the winter growing season. The side-effects of this groundwater drawdown and loss of stored water are felt primarily by the environment in, and adjacent to, southern Biscayne Bay. Without the rapid drainage of freshwater, these large volumes of water would gradually leak into Biscayne Bay and its low-lying coastal wetlands, providing freshwater flows further into the dry season. The rapid and sudden release of water from the Biscayne Aquifer within a few weeks of the end of the wet season brings about an artificially early start to the dry season. The following dry season is thus unnaturally dry, leading to long periods of dry marshes and high salinities along the shoreline. The result threatens productive estuarine fish and shellfish habitat, enhances predation of nearshore species by marine fish, encourages exotic plant species within the coastal wetland zone, and promotes a loss of wading bird foraging habitat during nesting season. The threat of saltwater intrusion into the Biscayne Aquifer is enhanced by this operational practice as well, since sea levels are at their seasonal maximums in October and November. The effects of the agricultural drawdown, the possible enhancements to the coastal ecosystem that could be realized by its elimination, and its future within the context of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan's Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands project will be explored.

  15. Innovative use of controlled availability fertilizers with high performance for intensive agriculture and environmental conservation.

    PubMed

    Shoji, Sadao

    2005-12-01

    A variety of slow release fertilizers, controlled release (availability) fertilizers (CAFs), and stability fertilizers have been developed in response to the serious drawbacks of the conventional fertilizers since the early 1960's. Of these fertilizers, CAFs which are coated with resin are consumed in the largest quantity in the world. Selecting CAFs with higher performance, the author will discuss about: 1) Innovation of agro-technologies for various field crops including new concepts of fertilizer application, 2) high yielding of field crops, 3) enhancing quality and safety of farm products, and 4) controlling the adverse effect of intensive agriculture on the environment. PMID:16512212

  16. Innovative use of controlled availability fertilizers with high performance for intensive agriculture and environmental conservation.

    PubMed

    Shoji, Sadao

    2005-09-01

    A variety of slow release fertilizers, controlled release (availability) fertilizers (CAFs), and stability fertilizers have been developed in response to the serious drawbacks of the conventional fertilizers since the early 1960's. Of these fertilizers, CAFs which are coated with resin are consumed in the largest quantity in the world. Selecting CAFs with higher performance, the author will discuss about: 1) Innovation of agro-technologies for various field crops including new concepts of fertilizer application, 2) high yielding of field crops, 3) enhancing quality and safety of farm products, and 4) controlling the adverse effect of intensive agriculture on the environment. PMID:20549445

  17. Reduced grazing pressure delivers production and environmental benefits for the typical steppe of north China

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yingjun; Huang, Ding; Badgery, Warwick B.; Kemp, David R.; Chen, Wenqing; Wang, Xiaoya; Liu, Nan

    2015-01-01

    Degradation by overgrazing is common in many areas of the world and optimising grassland functions depends upon finding suitable grazing tactics. This four-year study on the northern China steppe investigated combinations of rest, moderate or heavy grazing pressure early in the summer growing season, then moderate or heavy grazing in the mid and late season. Results showed that moderate grazing pressure (~550 sheep equivalent (SE) grazing days ha−1 year−1) gave the optimal balance between maintaining a productive and diverse grassland, a profitable livestock system, and greenhouse gas mitigation. Further analyses identified that more conservative stocking (~400 SE grazing days ha−1 year−1) maintained a desirable Leymus chinensis composition and achieved a higher live weight gain of sheep. Early summer rest best maintained a desirable grassland composition, but had few other benefits and reduced incomes. These findings demonstrate that reducing grazing pressure to half the current district stocking rates can deliver improved ecosystem services (lower greenhouse gases and improved grassland composition) while sustaining herder incomes. PMID:26553566

  18. Reduced grazing pressure delivers production and environmental benefits for the typical steppe of north China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yingjun; Huang, Ding; Badgery, Warwick B; Kemp, David R; Chen, Wenqing; Wang, Xiaoya; Liu, Nan

    2015-01-01

    Degradation by overgrazing is common in many areas of the world and optimising grassland functions depends upon finding suitable grazing tactics. This four-year study on the northern China steppe investigated combinations of rest, moderate or heavy grazing pressure early in the summer growing season, then moderate or heavy grazing in the mid and late season. Results showed that moderate grazing pressure (~550 sheep equivalent (SE) grazing days ha(-1) year(-1)) gave the optimal balance between maintaining a productive and diverse grassland, a profitable livestock system, and greenhouse gas mitigation. Further analyses identified that more conservative stocking (~400 SE grazing days ha(-1) year(-1)) maintained a desirable Leymus chinensis composition and achieved a higher live weight gain of sheep. Early summer rest best maintained a desirable grassland composition, but had few other benefits and reduced incomes. These findings demonstrate that reducing grazing pressure to half the current district stocking rates can deliver improved ecosystem services (lower greenhouse gases and improved grassland composition) while sustaining herder incomes. PMID:26553566

  19. Tradeoff between environmental impacts and economic benefits?: A case study of the Finnish and British pulp and paper industries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valtonen, Mikko

    2001-02-01

    Due to the increased used paper collection rates in Western Europe, more recycled fibre will be used in the manufacture of paper. This will affect both the environmental and economic performance of the pulp and paper industry. The potential for the increase of the collection rate varies significantly in different countries in western Europe. In some countries the collection rate is already close to 70% (Austria, Germany; in others it is around 45% (Italy, United Kingdom). With the increased demand for recycled fibre also the collection will increase. When the collection of waste paper is increased something has to be done with the collected paper. Different utilisation modes results in different emission profiles. They also have different economic consequences. In this article the environmental and economic impacts of an increased paper collection rate are studied with three alternative scenarios. These scenarios are drawn using a dynamic material flow modelling such as Joined Time Projection (JTP). The results show, that a clear trade off between harmful environmental impacts and economic benefits exists.

  20. Economic and environmental impacts of the corn grain ethanol industry on the United States agricultural sector

    SciTech Connect

    Larson, J.A.; English, B.C.; De La Torre Ugarte, D. G.; Menard, R.J.; Hellwinckel, C.M.; West, Tristram O.

    2010-09-10

    This study evaluated the impacts of increased ethanol production from corn starch on agricultural land use and the environment in the United States. The Policy Analysis System simulation model was used to simulate alternative ethanol production scenarios for 2007 through 2016. Results indicate that increased corn ethanol production had a positive effect on net farm income and economic wellbeing of the US agricultural sector. In addition, government payments to farmers were reduced because of higher commodity prices and enhanced net farm income. Results also indicate that if Conservation Reserve Program land was converted to crop production in response to higher demand for ethanol in the simulation, individual farmers planted more land in crops, including corn. With a larger total US land area in crops due to individual farmer cropping choices, total US crop output rose, which decreased crop prices and aggregate net farm income relative to the scenario where increased ethanol production happened without Conservation Reserve Program land. Substantial shifts in land use occurred with corn area expanding throughout the United States, especially in the traditional corn-growing area of the midcontinent region.

  1. The impact of environmental and agricultural pollutants on the prevalence of allergic diseases in people from Qassim, KSA

    PubMed Central

    Elshabrawy, Walaa Othman; Ismail, Hisham Abdel-Sadek; Hassanein, Khaled Mohamed

    2014-01-01

    Background There are multiple environmental factors that influence a sensitized (IgE antibody positive) patient’s predisposition to manifest allergic symptoms following allergen exposure. The majority of allergens are known to induce morbidity with chronic symptoms such as rhinitis, pruritis, dermatitis and urticaria. Aim To study the impact of environmental and agricultural pollutants with different pollens on the immunological, hematological and biochemical markers and to determine the prevalence of sensitization to allergens among exposed individuals as well as to identify the eliciting allergens. Subjects and Methods Ninety six highly exposed individuals to environmental and agricultural pollution in addition to 20 as controls were selected. A solid phase enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and the EUROLINE test kit were used for the quantitative determination of total IgE concentration and semi-quantitative in vitro assay of human IgE antibodies to some of the inhalant, ingestant and contactant allergens in serum samples, respectively. Percentage and absolute eosinophil counts and biochemical parameters were analyzed. Results Thirteen (13.5%) out of the 96 studied highly exposed subjects were manifesting allergic symptoms. Higher significant total serum IgE levels and absolute eosinophil counts in groups 1 and 3 of the highly exposed individuals compared to the control group were found (p1=0.00, p3=0.001 and p1=0.016, p3=0.028, respectively). Higher sensitization with inhalant Timothy grass, Aspergillus fumigatus, Der. Farinae and Olive; ingestant Egg yolk, Mango, Strawberry and Codfish and with contactant Latex/plastic and Crude oil was found in the studied groups compared with the controls. Conclusion The present data suggest that the highly exposed subjects to pollution are at high risk of developing an allergy. For the screening of those with suspected allergen sensitization, the determination of specific IgE antibodies is a suitable marker of type I

  2. Enantioseparation and determination of the chiral phenylpyrazole insecticide ethiprole in agricultural and environmental samples and its enantioselective degradation in soil.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qing; Shi, Haiyan; Gao, Beibei; Tian, Mingming; Hua, Xiude; Wang, Minghua

    2016-01-15

    An effective method for the enantioselective determination of ethiprole enantiomers in agricultural and environmental samples was developed. The effects of solvent extraction, mobile phase and thermodynamic parameters for chiral recognition were fully investigated. Complete enantioseparation of the ethiprole enantiomers was achieved on a Lux Cellulose-2 column. The stereochemical structures of ethiprole enantiomers were also determined, and (R)-(+)-ethiprole was first eluted. The average recoveries were 82.7-104.9% with intra-day RSD of 1.7-8.2% in soil, cucumber, spinach, tomato, apple and peach under optimal conditions. Good linearity (R(2)≥0.9991) was obtained for all the matrix calibration curves within a range of 0.1 to 10 mg L(-1). The limits of detection for both enantiomers were estimated to be 0.008 mg kg(-1) in soil, cucumber, spinach and tomato and 0.012 mg kg(-1) in apple and peach, which were lower than the maximum residue levels established in Japan. The results indicate that the proposed method is convenient and reliable for the enantioselective detection of ethiprole in agricultural and environmental samples. The behavior of ethiprole in soil was studied under field conditions and the enantioselective degradation was observed with enantiomer fraction values varying from 0.494 to 0.884 during the experiment. The (R)-(+)-ethiprole (t1/2=11.6 d) degraded faster than (S)-(-)-ethiprole (t1/2=34.7 d). This report is the first describe a chiral analytical method and enantioselective behavior of ethiprole, and these results should be extremely useful for the risk evaluation of ethiprole in food and environmental safety. PMID:26556749

  3. Environmental attitudes and drift reduction behavior among commercial pesticide applicators in a U.S. agricultural landscape.

    PubMed

    Reimer, Adam P; Prokopy, Linda S

    2012-12-30

    Pesticide drift is a significant environmental problem in rural regions, and can result in losses to certain non-target crops and livestock, water and air pollution, and threats to human health. While state agencies seek to control the harmful effects of pesticides through licensing and certificate programs, the adoption rates of drift-reducing practices by commercial applicators remain highly variable. In order to effectively target outreach efforts to commercial applicators, managers need to better understand current use patterns and the motivations behind the adoption and non-adoption of preferred practices. Using a web and mail survey, this study explored environmental attitudes, awareness and concern for pesticide drift, and current practice adoption for drift reduction by commercial pesticide applicators in Indiana. Researchers surveyed three distinct applicator types: industrial weed management (utility right-of-way), agriculture, and aerial (which are mostly spraying in an agricultural setting). Overall, applicators exhibited positive environmental attitudes, but low concern for pesticide drift in the geographic areas where they operate. Adoption rates for several drift reduction technologies were high, particularly for equipment and spray modifications such as low-drift spray nozzles (88%) and increased spray droplet size (92%). Applicators were less familiar with specialty equipment (such as band sprayers, 13% adoption rate) and methods for identifying sensitive sites such as bee colonies and organic crops. Among the three groups, industrial weed management applicators had the lowest adoption rates. Applicators were motivated to adopt drift-reduction practices by the desire to be a good neighbor and a desire to be a good land steward. There is potential for use of more innovative, voluntary approaches to raise awareness of sites sensitive to pesticide drift in rural landscapes. PMID:23062271

  4. Performance and life cycle environmental benefits of recycling spent ion exchange brines by catalytic treatment of nitrate.

    PubMed

    Choe, Jong Kwon; Bergquist, Allison M; Jeong, Sangjo; Guest, Jeremy S; Werth, Charles J; Strathmann, Timothy J

    2015-09-01

    Salt used to make brines for regeneration of ion exchange (IX) resins is the dominant economic and environmental liability of IX treatment systems for nitrate-contaminated drinking water sources. To reduce salt usage, the applicability and environmental benefits of using a catalytic reduction technology to treat nitrate in spent IX brines and enable their reuse for IX resin regeneration were evaluated. Hybrid IX/catalyst systems were designed and life cycle assessment of process consumables are used to set performance targets for the catalyst reactor. Nitrate reduction was measured in a typical spent brine (i.e., 5000 mg/L NO3(-) and 70,000 mg/L NaCl) using bimetallic Pd-In hydrogenation catalysts with variable Pd (0.2-2.5 wt%) and In (0.0125-0.25 wt%) loadings on pelletized activated carbon support (Pd-In/C). The highest activity of 50 mgNO3(-)/(min - g(Pd)) was obtained with a 0.5 wt%Pd-0.1 wt%In/C catalyst. Catalyst longevity was demonstrated by observing no decrease in catalyst activity over more than 60 days in a packed-bed reactor. Based on catalyst activity measured in batch and packed-bed reactors, environmental impacts of hybrid IX/catalyst systems were evaluated for both sequencing-batch and continuous-flow packed-bed reactor designs and environmental impacts of the sequencing-batch hybrid system were found to be 38-81% of those of conventional IX. Major environmental impact contributors other than salt consumption include Pd metal, hydrogen (electron donor), and carbon dioxide (pH buffer). Sensitivity of environmental impacts of the sequencing-batch hybrid reactor system to sulfate and bicarbonate anions indicate the hybrid system is more sustainable than conventional IX when influent water contains <80 mg/L sulfate (at any bicarbonate level up to 100 mg/L) or <20 mg/L bicarbonate (at any sulfate level up to 100 mg/L) assuming 15 brine reuse cycles. The study showed that hybrid IX/catalyst reactor systems have potential to reduce resource consumption and

  5. Traditional Agriculture and Permaculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pierce, Dick

    1997-01-01

    Discusses benefits of combining traditional agricultural techniques with the concepts of "permaculture," a framework for revitalizing traditions, culture, and spirituality. Describes school, college, and community projects that have assisted American Indian communities in revitalizing sustainable agricultural practices that incorporate cultural…

  6. Environmentally Sound Small-Scale Agricultural Projects: Guidelines for Planning. Revised Edition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Altieri, Miguel; Vukasin, Helen L., Ed.

    Environmental planning requires more than finding the right technology and a source of funds. Planning involves consideration of the social, cultural, economic, and natural environments in which the project occurs. The challenge is to develop sustainable food systems that have reasonable production but do not degrade the resource base and upset…

  7. INTEGRATING INNOVATIVE BIOMARKERS OF ENVIRONMENTALLY INDUCED DISEASE FOR CHILDREN IN AGRICULTURAL COMMUNITIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The proposed study is a supplement to our EPA/NIEHS funded Center for Child Environmental Health Risks Research (CHC). We propose to develop an integrative tool for evaluating the importance of knowledge of biomarkers of susceptibility and early response for establishing the e...

  8. Biochars multifunctional role as a novel technology in the agricultural, environmental, and industrial sectors

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Biochar is utilized around the globe as an amendment to increase soil health characteristics and improve the environmental quality of water and soils systems. This rapid rise in using biochars is in response to the anticipated need to increase food production for future global nutrition demands. A...

  9. [Agricultural activity and environmental externality: an analysis of the use of pesticides in the Brazilian savannah].

    PubMed

    Soares, Wagner Lopes; Porto, Marcelo Firpo

    2007-01-01

    This paper discusses the negative externalities associated with the intensive use of pesticides in the Brazilian savannah. These externalities are mainly related to impacts on the environment and on human health (rural workers and families, consumers), the costs of which end up being socialized. The externality considered in the present paper is of soil and water contamination by pesticides. The data source is the questionnaire of the Basic Municipal Information Research applied in 2003. Maps are used in order to associate contaminated areas with agricultural activity. Some risk factors associated with soil and water contamination by pesticides such as seasonal crop area, air pollution by burning and weed proliferation, were obtained through a logistic regression. The study concludes that the results can be helpful to formulate policies and aid in the design of regulating instruments and the definition of priority areas where preventive actions should be implemented. PMID:17680064

  10. Review and analysis of parameters for assessing transport of environmentally released radionuclides through agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    Baes, C.F. III; Sharp, R.D.; Sjoreen, A.L.; Shor, R.W.

    1984-09-01

    Most of the default parameters incorporated into the TERRA computer code are documented including a literature review and systematic analysis of element-specific transfer parameters B/sub v/, B/sub r/, F/sub m/, F/sub f/, and K/sub d/. This review and analysis suggests default values which are consistent with the modeling approaches taken in TERRA and may be acceptable for most assessment applications of the computer code. However, particular applications of the code and additional analysis of elemental transport may require alternative default values. Use of the values reported herein in other computer codes simulating terrestrial transport is not advised without careful interpretation of the limitations and scope these analyses. An approach to determination of vegetation-specific interception fractions is also discussed. The limitations of this approach are many, and its use indicates the need for analysis of deposition, interception, and weathering processes. Judgement must be exercised in interpretation of plant surface concentrations generated. Finally, the location-specific agricultural, climatological, and population parameters in the default SITE data base documented. These parameters are intended as alternatives to average values currently used. Indeed, areas in the United States where intensive crop, milk, or beef production occurs will be reflected in the parameter values as will areas where little agricultural activity occurs. However, the original information sources contained some small error and the interpolation and conversion methods used will add more. Parameters used in TERRA not discussed herein are discussed in the companion report to this one - ORNL-5785. In the companion report the models employed in and the coding of TERRA are discussed. These reports together provide documentation of the TERRA code and its use in assessments. 96 references, 78 figures, 21 tables.

  11. Optimization of integrated water quality management for agricultural efficiency and environmental conservation.

    PubMed

    Fleifle, Amr; Saavedra, Oliver; Yoshimura, Chihiro; Elzeir, Mohamed; Tawfik, Ahmed

    2014-01-01

    The scarcity of water resources in Egypt has necessitated the use of various types of lower quality water. Agricultural drainage water is considered a strategic reserve for meeting increasing freshwater demands. In this study, a novel model series was applied to a drainage basin in the Nile Delta to optimize integrated water quality management for agriculture and the aquatic environment. The proposed model series includes a waste load allocation model, an export coefficient model, a stream water quality model, and a genetic algorithm. This model series offers an optimized solution for determining the required removal levels of total suspended solids (TSS), the chemical oxygen demand (COD) at point and non-point pollution sources, and the source flows that require treatment to meet a given water quality target. The model series was applied during the summer and winter to the El-Qalaa basin in the western delta of the Nile River. Increased pollutant removal and treated fractions at point and non-point sources reduced violations of the TSS standards from 732.6 to 238.9 mg/L in summer and from 543.1 to 380.9 mg/L in winter. Likewise, violations of the COD standards decreased from 112.4 mg/L to 0 (no violations) in summer and from 91.7 mg/L to no violations in winter. Thus, this model is recommended as a decision support tool for determining a desirable waste load allocation solution from a trade-off curve considering costs and the degree of compliance with water quality standards. PMID:24671393

  12. Water Framework Directive catchment planning: a case study apportioning loads and assessing environmental benefits of programme of measures.

    PubMed

    Crabtree, Bob; Kelly, Sarah; Green, Hannah; Squibbs, Graham; Mitchell, Gordon

    2009-01-01

    Complying with proposed Water Framework Directive (WFD) water quality standards for 'good ecological status' in England and Wales potentially requires a range of Programmes of Measures (PoMs) to control point and diffuse sources of pollution. There is an urgent need to define the benefits and costs of a range of potential PoMs. Water quality modelling can be used to understand where the greatest impact in a catchment can be achieved through 'end of pipe' and diffuse source reductions. This information can be used to guide cost-effective investment by private water companies and those with responsibilities for agricultural, industrial and urban diffuse inputs. In the UK, river water quality modelling with the Environment Agency SIMCAT model is regarded as the best current approach to support decision making for river water quality management and planning. The paper describes how a SIMCAT model has been used to conduct a trial WFD integrated catchment planning study for the River Ribble catchment in the North West of England. The model has been used to assess over 80 catchment planning scenarios. The results are being used support a national assessment of the cost-effectiveness of proposed PoMs. PMID:19213994

  13. Environmental risk, resilience and migration: implications for natural resource management and agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deshingkar, Priya

    2012-03-01

    This letter probes the causal links between migration, remittances and resilience to environmental change. Three case studies have been chosen, Western Mexico, the Central Plateau of Burkina Faso and Eastern India, where satellite imagery shows recent regeneration of vegetative cover and where there is evidence of high rates of migration. The findings are analysed through a framework that draws on concepts of ecological anthropology, new economics of labour theories and livelihood analyses of migration drivers and impacts.

  14. Environmental assessment for Kelley Hot Spring geothermal project: Kelley Hot Spring Agricultural Center

    SciTech Connect

    Neilson, J.A.

    1981-04-01

    The environmental impacts of an integrated swine production unit are analyzed together with necessary ancillary operations deriving its primary energy from a known geothermal reservoir in accordance with policies established by the National Energy Conservation Act. This environmental assessment covers 6 areas designated as potentially feasible project sites, using as the basic criteria for selection ground, surface and geothermal water supplies. The six areas, comprising +- 150 acres each, are within a 2 mile radius of Kelley Hot Springs, a known geothermal resource of many centuries standing, located 16 miles west of Alturas, the county seat of Modoc County, California. The project consists of the construction and operation of a 1360 sow confined pork production complex expandable to 5440 sows. The farrow to finish system for 1360 sows consists of 2 breeding barns, 2 gestation barns, 1 farrowing and 1 nursery barn, 3 growing and 3 finishing barns, a feed mill, a methane generator for waste disposal and water storage ponds. Supporting this are one geothermal well and 1 or 2 cold water wells, all occupying approximately 12 acres. Environmental reconnaissance involving geology, hydrology, soils, vegetation, fauna, air and water quality, socioeconomic, archaelogical and historical, and land use aspects were carefully carried out, impacts assessed and mitigations evaluated.

  15. Environmental and economic evaluation of energy recovery from agricultural and forestry residues

    SciTech Connect

    1980-09-01

    Four conversion methods and five residues are examined in this report, which describes six model systems: hydrolysis of corn residues, pyrolysis of corn residues, combustion of cotton-ginning residues, pyrolysis of wheat residues, fermentation of molasses, and combustion of pulp and papermill wastes. Estimates of material and energy flows for those systems are given per 10/sup 12/ Btu of recovered energy. Regional effects are incorporated by addressing the regionalized production of the residues. A national scope cannot be provided for every residue considered because of the biological and physical constraints of crop production. Thus, regionalization of the model systems to the primary production region for the crop from which the residue is obtained has been undertaken. The associated environmental consequences of residue utilization are then assessed for the production region. In addition, the environmental impacts of operating the model systems are examined by quantifying the residuals generated and the land, water, and material requirements per 10/sup 12/ Btu of energy generated. On the basis of estimates found in the literature, capital, operating, and maintenance cost estimates are given for the model systems. These data are also computed on the basis of 10/sup 12/ Btu of energy recovered. The cost, residual, material, land, and water data were then organized into a format acceptable for input into the SEAS data management program. The study indicates that the most serious environmental impacts arise from residue removal rather than from conversion.

  16. Socio-hydrologic drivers of the Pendulum Swing between agriculture development and environmental health: a case study from Murrumbidgee River Basin, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kandasamy, J.; Sounthararajah, D.; Sivabalan, P.; Chanan, A.; Vigneswaran, S.; Sivapalan, M.

    2013-06-01

    This paper presents a case study centered on the Murrumbidgee river basin in eastern Australia that illustrates the dynamics of the balance between water extraction and use for food production and efforts to mitigate and reverse consequent degradation of the riparian environment. In particular the paper traces the history of a pendulum swing between an exclusive focus on agricultural development and food production in the initial stages and its attendant socio-economic benefits, followed by the gradual realization of the adverse environmental impacts, efforts to mitigate these with the use of remedial measures, and ultimately concerted efforts and externally imposed solutions to restore environmental health and ecosystem services. The 100 yr history of development within Murrumbidgee is divided into four eras, each underpinned by the dominance of different norms/goals and turning points characterized by their changes. The various stages of development can be characterized by the dominance, in turn, of infrastructure systems, policy frameworks, economic instruments, and technological solutions. The paper argues that, to avoid these costly pendulum swings, management needs to be underpinned by long-term coupled socio-hydrologic system models that explicitly include the two-way coupling between human and hydrological systems, including evolution of human values/norms relating to water and the environment. Such coupled human-water system models can provide insights into dominant controls of the trajectory of their co-evolution in a given system, and can also be used to interpret patterns of co-evolution of such coupled systems in different places across gradients of climatic, socio-economic and socio-cultural conditions, and in this way to help develop generalizable understanding.

  17. Socio-hydrologic drivers of the pendulum swing between agricultural development and environmental health: a case study from Murrumbidgee River basin, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kandasamy, J.; Sounthararajah, D.; Sivabalan, P.; Chanan, A.; Vigneswaran, S.; Sivapalan, M.

    2014-03-01

    This paper presents a case study centred on the Murrumbidgee River basin in eastern Australia. It illustrates the dynamics of the balance between water extraction and use for food production, and efforts to mitigate and reverse consequent degradation of the riparian environment. In particular, the paper traces the history of a pendulum swing between an exclusive focus on agricultural development and food production in the initial stages and its attendant socio-economic benefits, followed by the gradual realization of the adverse environmental impacts, subsequent efforts to mitigate these with the use of remedial measures, and ultimately concerted efforts and externally imposed solutions to restore environmental health and ecosystem services. The 100-year history of development within the Murrumbidgee is divided into four eras, each underpinned by the dominance of different values and norms and turning points characterized by their changes. The various stages of development can be characterized by the dominance, in turn, of infrastructure systems, policy frameworks, economic instruments, and technological solutions. The paper argues that, to avoid these costly pendulum swings, management needs to be underpinned by long-term coupled socio-hydrologic system models that explicitly include the two-way coupling between human and hydrological systems, including the slow evolution of human values and norms relating to water and the environment. Such coupled human-water system models can provide insights into dominant controls of the trajectory of their co-evolution in a given system, and can also be used to interpret patterns of co-evolution of such coupled systems in different places across gradients of climatic, socio-economic and socio-cultural conditions, and in this way to help develop generalizable understanding.

  18. Celtic field agriculture and Early Anthropogenic Environmental change in the Meuse-Demer-Scheldt region, NW Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van der Sanden, Germaine; Kluiving, Sjoerd; Roymans, Nico

    2016-04-01

    The field of Archaeology remains focused on historical issues while underexploring its potential contribution on currently existing societal problems, e.g. climate change. The aim of this paper is to show the relevance of archeological studies for the research of the 'human species as a significant moving agent' in terms of the changing natural environment during a much earlier time frame. This research is based on the study area of the Meuse-Demer-Scheldt region in the Netherlands and Belgium and exhibits the period from the Late Bronze Age to the Early Roman period. This period is characterized by the widespread introduction and use of an agricultural system, often referred to as the Celtic Field system that served as one of the most modifying systems in terms of anthropogenic-environmental change during this period. Emphasis in this research is given to results generated by the use of the remote sensing technology, LiDAR. New information is reported considering a correlation between singular field size and the overall surface of the agricultural complexes and secondly, the presentation of newly identified Celtic field systems in the Meuse-Demer-Scheldt region are presented. The study of the dynamics of the Celtic Field agricultural system provides evidence for a significant anthropogenic footprint on the natural environment due to land cover dominance, soil degeneration, increased soil acidification and forest clearance. Soil exhaustion forced the inhabitants to re-establish their relationship with the landscape in terms of fundamental changes in the habitation pattern and the agrarian exploitations of the land.

  19. Controlled Landfill Project in Yolo County, California for Environmental Benefits of Waste Stabilization and Minimization of Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yazdani, R.; Augenstein, D.; Kieffer, J.; Cohen, K.

    2003-12-01

    The Department of Public Works of Yolo County, California, USA has been testing an advanced approach to landfill bioreactors, controlled (or "enhanced") landfilling, at its Yolo County Central Landfill site near Davis, CA, since 1994. Overall objectives have been the management of waste landfilling for: (1) rapid completion of total gas generation; (2) maximum, high-efficiency gas capture; (3) waste volume reduction; and (4) maximum greenhouse gas and carbon sequestration benefits. Methane generation is controlled and enhanced through carefully managed moisture additions, and by taking advantage of landfill temperature elevation. The generated landfill methane, an important greenhouse gas, is recovered with high efficiency through extraction from a porous recovery layer beneath a surface geomembrane cover. Instrumentation included a total of 56 moisture and 15 temperature sensors in the two cells, gas flow monitoring by positive displacement gas meters, and accurate quantification of liquid inputs and outputs. Gas composition, waste volume reduction, base hydrostatic head, and a range of environmental compliance parameters has been monitored since 1995. Partitioning gas tracer tests using the injection of two gases at dilute concentrations in the landfill have also been initiated to compute the fraction of pore space occupied by water between the points of tracer injection and tracer measurement. There has been rapid waste volume reduction in the enhanced cell that corresponds to the solids' reduction to gas. Monitoring is planned for the next several years, until stabilization parameters are determined complete. Encouraging performance is indicated by: (1) sensor data; (2) gas generation results; (3) data from landfill cores; and (4) decomposition-related indicators including rapid volume reduction. When data are synthesized, project results have attractive implications for new approaches to landfill management. Over seven-years, methane recoveries have averaged

  20. Environmental Risk Assessment of Fluctuating Diazinon Concentrations in an Urban and Agricultural Catchment Using Toxicokinetic–Toxicodynamic Modeling

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Temporally resolved environmental risk assessment of fluctuating concentrations of micropollutants is presented. We separated the prediction of toxicity over time from the extrapolation from one to many species and from acute to sublethal effects. A toxicokinetic–toxicodynamic (TKTD) model predicted toxicity caused by fluctuating concentrations of diazinon, measured by time-resolved sampling over 108 days from three locations in a stream network, representing urban, agricultural and mixed land use. We calculated extrapolation factors to quantify variation in toxicity among species and effect types based on available toxicity data, while correcting for different test durations with the TKTD model. Sampling from the distribution of extrapolation factors and prediction of time-resolved toxicity with the TKTD model facilitated subsequent calculation of the risk of undesired toxic events. Approximately one-fifth of aquatic organisms were at risk and fluctuating concentrations were more toxic than their averages. Contribution of urban and agricultural sources of diazinon to the overall risk varied. Thus using fixed concentrations as water quality criteria appears overly simplistic because it ignores the temporal dimension of toxicity. However, the improved prediction of toxicity for fluctuating concentrations may be small compared to uncertainty due to limited diversity of toxicity data to base the extrapolation factors on. PMID:21958042

  1. Environmental risk assessment of fluctuating diazinon concentrations in an urban and agricultural catchment using toxicokinetic-toxicodynamic modeling.

    PubMed

    Ashauer, Roman; Wittmer, Irene; Stamm, Christian; Escher, Beate I

    2011-11-15

    Temporally resolved environmental risk assessment of fluctuating concentrations of micropollutants is presented. We separated the prediction of toxicity over time from the extrapolation from one to many species and from acute to sublethal effects. A toxicokinetic-toxicodynamic (TKTD) model predicted toxicity caused by fluctuating concentrations of diazinon, measured by time-resolved sampling over 108 days from three locations in a stream network, representing urban, agricultural and mixed land use. We calculated extrapolation factors to quantify variation in toxicity among species and effect types based on available toxicity data, while correcting for different test durations with the TKTD model. Sampling from the distribution of extrapolation factors and prediction of time-resolved toxicity with the TKTD model facilitated subsequent calculation of the risk of undesired toxic events. Approximately one-fifth of aquatic organisms were at risk and fluctuating concentrations were more toxic than their averages. Contribution of urban and agricultural sources of diazinon to the overall risk varied. Thus using fixed concentrations as water quality criteria appears overly simplistic because it ignores the temporal dimension of toxicity. However, the improved prediction of toxicity for fluctuating concentrations may be small compared to uncertainty due to limited diversity of toxicity data to base the extrapolation factors on. PMID:21958042

  2. Assessment of nitrate leakage and N2O emission from five environmental-friendly agricultural practices using fuzzy logic method and empirical formula.

    PubMed

    Qin, Lihuan; Wang, Yan; Wu, Yongfeng; Wang, Qian; Luo, Liangguo

    2015-06-01

    Agricultural nonpoint source pollution in China has been the major environmental problem, so environmental-friendly agricultural practices (EAPs) must be promoted to improve environmental quality. However, the most suitable practices for each agricultural region must first be identified. Thus, in the presented study a fuzzy-logic method and a revised empirical formula were used to assess nitrate leakage and N2O emissions, respectively, and to compare five EAPs in Xinxiang, a major grain-producing county in Henan Province, China. The required information was collected in face-to-face interviews with 10 extension service experts from the county, using a questionnaire to explore their opinions of the EAPs currently adopted by smallholder farmers, as well as the amounts, frequencies, varieties and proportions of nitrogen fertilizers applied annually. The results indicate that reduced tillage, soil testing and fertilizer recommendations would be the most appropriate practices to initially promote on a large scale in Xinxiang. PMID:26003184

  3. GEMAS: Mercury in European agricultural and grazing land soils - sources and environmental risk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tore Ottesen, Rolf; Birke, Manfred; Gosar, Mateja; Reimann, Clemens

    2014-05-01

    Agricultural (Ap, Ap-horizon, 0-20 cm) and grasing land soil samples (Gr, 0-10 cm) were collected from a large part of Europe (33 countries, 5.6 million km2) at an average density of 1 sample site/2500 km2. The resulting more than 2 x 2000 soil samples were air dried, sieved to <2 mm and analysed for their Hg concentrations following an aqua regia extraction. Median concentrations for Hg are 0.030 mg/kg (range: <0.003 - 1.56 mg/kg) for the Ap samples and 0.035 mg/kg (range:<0.003 - 3.12 mg/kg) for the Gr samples. Only 5 Ap and 10 Gr samples returned Hg concentrations above 0.5 mg/kg. In the geochemical maps the continental-scale distribution of the element is clearly dominated by geology. Climate plays also an important role, Hg accumulates in those areas of northern Europe where a wet and cold climate favors the build-up of organic material. Typical anthropogenic sources like coal fired power plants, chlor-alkaline factories, metal smelters and urban agglomerations are hardly visible at the continental scale but can have a major impact at the local scale.

  4. Antibiotic resistance marker genes as environmental pollutants in GMO-pristine agricultural soils in Austria.

    PubMed

    Woegerbauer, Markus; Zeinzinger, Josef; Gottsberger, Richard Alexander; Pascher, Kathrin; Hufnagl, Peter; Indra, Alexander; Fuchs, Reinhard; Hofrichter, Johannes; Kopacka, Ian; Korschineck, Irina; Schleicher, Corina; Schwarz, Michael; Steinwider, Johann; Springer, Burkhard; Allerberger, Franz; Nielsen, Kaare M; Fuchs, Klemens

    2015-11-01

    Antibiotic resistance genes may be considered as environmental pollutants if anthropogenic emission and manipulations increase their prevalence above usually occurring background levels. The prevalence of aph(3')-IIa/nptII and aph(3')-IIIa/nptIII - frequent marker genes in plant biotechnology conferring resistance to certain aminoglycosides - was determined in Austrian soils from 100 maize and potato fields not yet exposed to but eligible for GMO crop cultivation. Total soil DNA extracts were analysed by nptII/nptIII-specific TaqMan real time PCR. Of all fields 6% were positive for nptII (median: 150 copies/g soil; range: 31-856) and 85% for nptIII (1190 copies/g soil; 13-61600). The copy-number deduced prevalence of nptIII carriers was 14-fold higher compared to nptII. Of the cultivable kanamycin-resistant soil bacteria 1.8% (95% confidence interval: 0-3.3%) were positive for nptIII, none for nptII (0-0.8%). The nptII-load of the studied soils was low rendering nptII a typical candidate as environmental pollutant upon anthropogenic release into these ecosystems. PMID:26232739

  5. A generic bio-economic farm model for environmental and economic assessment of agricultural systems.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Sander; Louhichi, Kamel; Kanellopoulos, Argyris; Zander, Peter; Flichman, Guillermo; Hengsdijk, Huib; Meuter, Eelco; Andersen, Erling; Belhouchette, Hatem; Blanco, Maria; Borkowski, Nina; Heckelei, Thomas; Hecker, Martin; Li, Hongtao; Oude Lansink, Alfons; Stokstad, Grete; Thorne, Peter; van Keulen, Herman; van Ittersum, Martin K

    2010-12-01

    Bio-economic farm models are tools to evaluate ex-post or to assess ex-ante the impact of policy and technology change on agriculture, economics and environment. Recently, various BEFMs have been developed, often for one purpose or location, but hardly any of these models are re-used later for other purposes or locations. The Farm System Simulator (FSSIM) provides a generic framework enabling the application of BEFMs under various situations and for different purposes (generating supply response functions and detailed regional or farm type assessments). FSSIM is set up as a component-based framework with components representing farmer objectives, risk, calibration, policies, current activities, alternative activities and different types of activities (e.g., annual and perennial cropping and livestock). The generic nature of FSSIM is evaluated using five criteria by examining its applications. FSSIM has been applied for different climate zones and soil types (criterion 1) and to a range of different farm types (criterion 2) with different specializations, intensities and sizes. In most applications FSSIM has been used to assess the effects of policy changes and in two applications to assess the impact of technological innovations (criterion 3). In the various applications, different data sources, level of detail (e.g., criterion 4) and model configurations have been used. FSSIM has been linked to an economic and several biophysical models (criterion 5). The model is available for applications to other conditions and research issues, and it is open to be further tested and to be extended with new components, indicators or linkages to other models. PMID:21113782

  6. A Generic Bio-Economic Farm Model for Environmental and Economic Assessment of Agricultural Systems

    PubMed Central

    Louhichi, Kamel; Kanellopoulos, Argyris; Zander, Peter; Flichman, Guillermo; Hengsdijk, Huib; Meuter, Eelco; Andersen, Erling; Belhouchette, Hatem; Blanco, Maria; Borkowski, Nina; Heckelei, Thomas; Hecker, Martin; Li, Hongtao; Oude Lansink, Alfons; Stokstad, Grete; Thorne, Peter; van Keulen, Herman; van Ittersum, Martin K.

    2010-01-01

    Bio-economic farm models are tools to evaluate ex-post or to assess ex-ante the impact of policy and technology change on agriculture, economics and environment. Recently, various BEFMs have been developed, often for one purpose or location, but hardly any of these models are re-used later for other purposes or locations. The Farm System Simulator (FSSIM) provides a generic framework enabling the application of BEFMs under various situations and for different purposes (generating supply response functions and detailed regional or farm type assessments). FSSIM is set up as a component-based framework with components representing farmer objectives, risk, calibration, policies, current activities, alternative activities and different types of activities (e.g., annual and perennial cropping and livestock). The generic nature of FSSIM is evaluated using five criteria by examining its applications. FSSIM has been applied for different climate zones and soil types (criterion 1) and to a range of different farm types (criterion 2) with different specializations, intensities and sizes. In most applications FSSIM has been used to assess the effects of policy changes and in two applications to assess the impact of technological innovations (criterion 3). In the various applications, different data sources, level of detail (e.g., criterion 4) and model configurations have been used. FSSIM has been linked to an economic and several biophysical models (criterion 5). The model is available for applications to other conditions and research issues, and it is open to be further tested and to be extended with new components, indicators or linkages to other models. PMID:21113782

  7. Financial competitiveness of organic agriculture on a global scale.

    PubMed

    Crowder, David W; Reganold, John P

    2015-06-16

    To promote global food and ecosystem security, several innovative farming systems have been identified that better balance multiple sustainability goals. The most rapidly growing and contentious of these systems is organic agriculture. Whether organic agriculture can continue to expand will likely be determined by whether it is economically competitive with conventional agriculture. Here, we examined the financial performance of organic and conventional agriculture by conducting a meta-analysis of a global dataset spanning 55 crops grown on five continents. When organic premiums were not applied, benefit/cost ratios (-8 to -7%) and net present values (-27 to -23%) of organic agriculture were significantly lower than conventional agriculture. However, when actual premiums were applied, organic agriculture was significantly more profitable (22-35%) and had higher benefit/cost ratios (20-24%) than conventional agriculture. Although premiums were 29-32%, breakeven premiums necessary for organic profits to match conventional profits were only 5-7%, even with organic yields being 10-18% lower. Total costs were not significantly different, but labor costs were significantly higher (7-13%) with organic farming practices. Studies in our meta-analysis accounted for neither environmental costs (negative externalities) nor ecosystem services from good farming practices, which likely favor organic agriculture. With only 1% of the global agricultural land in organic production, our findings suggest that organic agriculture can continue to expand even if premiums decline. Furthermore, with their multiple sustainability benefits, organic farming systems can contribute a larger share in feeding the world. PMID:26034271

  8. TERRA: a computer code for simulating the transport of environmentally released radionuclides through agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    Baes, C.F. III; Sharp, R.D.; Sjoreen, A.L.; Hermann, O.W.

    1984-11-01

    TERRA is a computer code which calculates concentrations of radionuclides and ingrowing daughters in surface and root-zone soil, produce and feed, beef, and milk from a given deposition rate at any location in the conterminous United States. The code is fully integrated with seven other computer codes which together comprise a Computerized Radiological Risk Investigation System, CRRIS. Output from either the long range (> 100 km) atmospheric dispersion code RETADD-II or the short range (<80 km) atmospheric dispersion code ANEMOS, in the form of radionuclide air concentrations and ground deposition rates by downwind location, serves as input to TERRA. User-defined deposition rates and air concentrations may also be provided as input to TERRA through use of the PRIMUS computer code. The environmental concentrations of radionuclides predicted by TERRA serve as input to the ANDROS computer code which calculates population and individual intakes, exposures, doses, and risks. TERRA incorporates models to calculate uptake from soil and atmospheric deposition on four groups of produce for human consumption and four groups of livestock feeds. During the environmental transport simulation, intermediate calculations of interception fraction for leafy vegetables, produce directly exposed to atmospherically depositing material, pasture, hay, and silage are made based on location-specific estimates of standing crop biomass. Pasture productivity is estimated by a model which considers the number and types of cattle and sheep, pasture area, and annual production of other forages (hay and silage) at a given location. Calculations are made of the fraction of grain imported from outside the assessment area. TERRA output includes the above calculations and estimated radionuclide concentrations in plant produce, milk, and a beef composite by location.

  9. Economic and environmental benefits of reducing standby power lossin DVD/VCD players and copiers in China

    SciTech Connect

    Lin, Jiang; Li, Tienan; Li, Aizhen; Zhang, Guoqing

    2004-06-01

    's certification activities. Media events organized by CECP have greatly improved the country's awareness of standby power loss. Reducing standby power loss has been formally incorporated into China's energy efficiency policy portfolio and in China's collaboration with the international community on the subject of energy efficiency (IEA, 2001). In phase II of the program, CECP's main task was to assess the market for DVD/VCD (Digital Versatile/Video Disc and Video Compact Disc) players and copiers to analyze the economic and technical benefits of energy conservation potential, and to develop technical specifications for DVD/VCD players and copiers, with technical assistance from LBNL. Having built on the success of Phase I, CECP paid great attention to the appraisal of market conditions and the economic and environmental benefits of reducing standby power loss in DVD/VCD players and copiers, and solicited inputs from stakeholders before finalizing the product certification requirements. This paper summarizes the expected energy conservation and environmental benefits due to the implementation of certification programs for DVD/VCD players and copiers in China.

  10. The role of conservation agriculture in sustainable agriculture.

    PubMed

    Hobbs, Peter R; Sayre, Ken; Gupta, Raj

    2008-02-12

    The paper focuses on conservation agriculture (CA), defined as minimal soil disturbance (no-till, NT) and permanent soil cover (mulch) combined with rotations, as a more sustainable cultivation system for the future. Cultivation and tillage play an important role in agriculture. The benefits of tillage in agriculture are explored before introducing conservation tillage (CT), a practice that was borne out of the American dust bowl of the 1930s. The paper then describes the benefits of CA, a suggested improvement on CT, where NT, mulch and rotations significantly improve soil properties and other biotic factors. The paper concludes that CA is a more sustainable and environmentally friendly management system for cultivating crops. Case studies from the rice-wheat areas of the Indo-Gangetic Plains of South Asia and the irrigated maize-wheat systems of Northwest Mexico are used to describe how CA practices have been used in these two environments to raise production sustainably and profitably. Benefits in terms of greenhouse gas emissions and their effect on global warming are also discussed. The paper concludes that agriculture in the next decade will have to sustainably produce more food from less land through more efficient use of natural resources and with minimal impact on the environment in order to meet growing population demands. Promoting and adopting CA management systems can help meet this goal. PMID:17720669

  11. Performance and environmental impact of biodegradable polymers as agricultural mulching films.

    PubMed

    Touchaleaume, François; Martin-Closas, Lluís; Angellier-Coussy, Hélène; Chevillard, Anne; Cesar, Guy; Gontard, Nathalie; Gastaldi, Emmanuelle

    2016-02-01

    In the aim of resolving environmental key issues such as irreversible soil pollution by non-biodegradable and non-recoverable polyethylene (PE) fragments, a full-scale field experiment was set up to evaluate the suitability of four biodegradable materials based on poly(butylene adipate-co-terephtalate) (PBAT) to be used as sustainable alternatives to PE for mulching application in vineyard. Initial ultimate tensile properties, functional properties during field ageing (water vapour permeability and radiometric properties), biodegradability and agronomical performance of the mulched vines (wood production and fruiting yield) were studied. In spite of their early loss of physical integrity that occurred only five months after vine planting, the four materials satisfied all the requested functional properties and led to agronomic performance as high as polyethylene. In the light of the obtained results, the mulching material lifespan was questioned in the case of long-term perennial crop such as grapevine. Taking into account their mulching efficiency and biodegradability, the four PBAT-based studied materials are proven to constitute suitable alternatives to the excessively resistant PE material. PMID:26386433

  12. High throughput imaging and analysis for biological interpretation of agricultural plants and environmental interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Hyundae; Benac, Jasenka; Riggsbee, Daniel; Koutsky, Keith

    2014-03-01

    High throughput (HT) phenotyping of crops is essential to increase yield in environments deteriorated by climate change. The controlled environment of a greenhouse offers an ideal platform to study the genotype to phenotype linkages for crop screening. Advanced imaging technologies are used to study plants' responses to resource limitations such as water and nutrient deficiency. Advanced imaging technologies coupled with automation make HT phenotyping in the greenhouse not only feasible, but practical. Monsanto has a state of the art automated greenhouse (AGH) facility. Handling of the soil, pots water and nutrients are all completely automated. Images of the plants are acquired by multiple hyperspectral and broadband cameras. The hyperspectral cameras cover wavelengths from visible light through short wave infra-red (SWIR). Inhouse developed software analyzes the images to measure plant morphological and biochemical properties. We measure phenotypic metrics like plant area, height, and width as well as biomass. Hyperspectral imaging allows us to measure biochemcical metrics such as chlorophyll, anthocyanin, and foliar water content. The last 4 years of AGH operations on crops like corn, soybean, and cotton have demonstrated successful application of imaging and analysis technologies for high throughput plant phenotyping. Using HT phenotyping, scientists have been showing strong correlations to environmental conditions, such as water and nutrient deficits, as well as the ability to tease apart distinct differences in the genetic backgrounds of crops.

  13. Environmental benefits. Fact sheet

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-12-01

    Acid rain primarily affects sensitive bodies of waters, that is, those that rest atop soil with a limited ability to neutralize acidic compounds (called 'buffering capacity'). Many lakes and streams examined in a National Surface Water Survey (NSWS) suffer from chronic acidity, a condition in which water has a constant low pH level. The NSWS investigated the effects of acidic deposition in over 1,000 lakes larger than 10 acres and in thousands of miles of streams. In some sensitive lakes and streams, acidification has completely eradicated fish species, such as thebrook trout, leaving the bodies of water barren. The Canadian government has estimated that 14,000 lakes in Eastern Canada are acidic. The New Jersey Pine Barrens area endures the highest rate of acidic streams in the nation. The Mid-Atlantic Highlands are acidic primarily due to acidic deposition while streams in the Mid-Appalachians are also undergoing increasing acidification.

  14. Assessing groundwater pollution hazard changes under different socio-economic and environmental scenarios in an agricultural watershed.

    PubMed

    Lima, M Lourdes; Romanelli, Asunción; Massone, Héctor E

    2015-10-15

    This paper proposes a modeling approach for assessing changes in groundwater pollution hazard under two different socio-economic and environmental scenarios: The first one considers an exponential growth of agriculture land-use (Relegated Sustainability), while the other deals with regional economic growth, taking into account, the restrictions put on natural resources use (Sustainability Reforms). The recent (2011) and forecasted (2030) groundwater pollution hazard is evaluated based on hydrogeological parameters and, the impact of land-use changes in the groundwater system, coupling together a land-use change model (Dyna-CLUE) with a groundwater flow model (MODFLOW), as inputs to a decision system support (EMDS). The Dulce Stream Watershed (Pampa Plain, Argentina) was chosen to test the usefulness and utility of this proposed method. It includes a high level of agricultural activities, significant local extraction of groundwater resources for drinking water and irrigation and extensive available data regarding aquifer features. The Relegated Sustainability Scenario showed a negative change in the aquifer system, increasing (+20%; high-very high classes) the contribution to groundwater pollution hazard throughout the watershed. On the other hand, the Sustainability Reforms Scenario displayed more balanced land-use changes with a trend towards sustainability, therefore proposing a more acceptable change in the aquifer system for 2030 with a possible 2% increase (high-very high classes) in groundwater pollution hazard. Results in the recent scenario (2011) showed that 54% of Dulce Stream Watershed still shows a moderate to a very low contribution to groundwater pollution hazard (mainly in the lower area). Therefore, from the point of view of natural resource management, this is a positive aspect, offering possibilities for intervention in order to prevent deterioration and protect this aquifer system. However, since it is quite possible that this aquifer status (i

  15. Late Holocene environmental reconstructions and the implications on flood events, typhoon patterns, and agriculture activities in NE Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, L.-C.; Behling, H.; Lee, T.-Q.; Li, H.-C.; Huh, C.-A.; Shiau, L.-J.; Chang, Y.-P.

    2014-05-01

    In this study, we reconstructed the paleoenvironmental changes from a sediment archive of the floodplain lake in Ilan Plain of NE Taiwan on multi-decadal resolution for the last ca. 1900 years. On the basis of pollen and diatom records, we evaluated the record of past vegetation, floods, typhoons and agriculture activities of this area, which is sensitive to the hydrological conditions of the West Pacific. High sedimentation rates with low microfossil preservations reflected multiple flood events and humid climatic conditions during 100-1400 AD. A shortly interrupted dry phase can be found during 940-1010 AD. The driest phase corresponds to the Little Ice Age phase 1 (LIA1, 1400-1620 AD) with less disturbance by flood events, which enhanced the occurrence of wetlands (Cyperaceae) and diatom depositions. Humid phases with frequent typhoons are inferred by high percentages of Lagerstroemia and high ratios of planktonic/benthic diatoms, respectively, during 500-700 AD and Little Ice Age phase 2 (LIA2, 1630-1850 AD). The occurrences of cultivated Poaceae (Oryza) during 1250-1300 AD and the last ~400 years, reflect agriculture activities, which seems to implicate strongly with the environmental stability. Finally, we found flood events which dominated during the El Niño-like stage, but dry events as well as frequent typhoon events happened during the La Niña-like stage. After comparing our results with the reconstructed proxy for tropical hydrological conditions, we suggested that the local hydrology in coastal East Asia were strongly affected by the typhoon-triggered heavy rainfalls which were influenced by the variation of global temperature, expansion of the Pacific warm pool and intensification of ENSO events.

  16. Impact of the agricultural research service watershed assessment studies on the conservation effects assessment project cropland national assessment

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    USDA initiated the Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) in 2002 to analyze societal and environmental benefits gained from the increased conservation program funding provided in the 2002 Farm Bill. The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Agricultural Research Service (ARS), and...

  17. The evolution of agricultural intensification and environmental degradation in the UK: a data-driven systems dynamics approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Armstrong McKay, David I.; Dearing, John A.; Dyke, James G.; Poppy, Guy; Firbank, Les

    2016-04-01

    The world's population continues to grow rapidly, yet the current demand for food is already resulting in environmental degradation in many regions. As a result, an emerging challenge of the 21st century is how agriculture can simultaneously undergo sustainable intensification and be made more resilient to accelerating climate change. Key to this challenge is: a) finding the "safe and just operating space" for the global agri-environment system that both provides sufficient food for humanity and avoids crossing dangerous planetary boundaries, and b) downscaling this framework from a planetary to a regional scale in order to better inform decision making and incorporate regional dynamics within the planetary boundaries framework. Regional safe operating spaces can be defined and explored using a combination of metrics that indicate the changing status of ecosystem services (both provisioning and regulating), statistical techniques that reveal early warning signals and breakpoints, and dynamical system models of the regional agri-environment system. Initial attempts to apply this methodology have been made in developing countries (e.g. China [Dearing et al., 2012, 2014; Zhang et al., 2015]), but have not yet been attempted in more developed countries, for example the UK. In this study we assess the changes in ecosystem services in two contrasting agricultural regions in the UK, arable-dominated East England and pastoral-dominated South-West England, since the middle of the 20th Century. We identify and establish proxies and indices of various provisioning and regulating services in these two regions and analyse how these have changed over this time. We find that significant degradation of regulating services occurred in Eastern England in the early 1980s, reflecting a period of rapid intensification and escalating fertiliser usage, but that regulating services have begun to recover since 2000 mainly as a result of fertiliser usage decoupling from increasing wheat

  18. Environmental and health benefits from designating the Marmara Sea and the Turkish Straits as an emission control area (ECA).

    PubMed

    Viana, M; Fann, N; Tobías, A; Querol, X; Rojas-Rueda, D; Plaza, A; Aynos, G; Conde, J A; Fernández, L; Fernández, C

    2015-03-17

    Ship emissions degrade air quality and affect human health, and are increasingly becoming a matter of concern. Sulfur emission control areas (ECA), specific coastal regions where only low-sulfur fuels may be consumed by ocean-going ships, have proven to be useful tools to reduce ship-sourced air pollution along the North American, Canadian, and European North and Baltic Sea coastlines. The present work assesses the environmental and health benefits which would derive from designating an ECA in the Marmara Sea and the Turkish Straits (50 000 ships/year; 23 million inhabitants). Results show evidence that implementing an ECA would be technically viable and that it would reduce ship-sourced PM10 and PM2.5 ambient concentrations in Istanbul by 67%, and SO2 by 90%. The reduction of the air pollution burden on health was quantified as 210 hospital admissions from exposure to PM10, 290 hospital admissions from exposure to SO2, and up to 30 premature deaths annually due to ECA emission controls. Consequently, the designation of an ECA in the Marmara Sea and the Turkish Straits is evaluated as a positive, technically viable and real-world measure to reduce air pollution from ships in Turkey. PMID:25700153

  19. Simulating Sustainable P Management Practices in Tile-Drained Landscapes of Central Ohio Using the Agricultural Policy Environmental Extender (APEX)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ford, W. I., III; King, K.; Williams, M.

    2014-12-01

    Despite extensive application of conservation practices to minimize sediment P delivery to streams, hypoxic conditions and harmful algal blooms persist in receiving water bodies. Tile-drainage networks are a focal point for reducing soluble P in the food-producing Midwestern United States in that they promote higher connectivity between upland soils and stream channels which decreases soil contact time, and biogeochemical alterations. A critical next step to reduce the environmental impact and maintain sustainable agriculture is to implement best management practices (BMPs) under a holistic framework that considers adverse effects to water resources and crop production, while maintaining economic feasibility. The objective of this study was to apply a robust numerical model, the Agricultural Policy Environmental Extender (APEX), in a tile-drained landscape in Central Ohio in order to evaluate the effectiveness of a suite of BMPs on soluble and particulate P delivery to stream channels. The model was applied and evaluated at two adjacent edge-of-field sites with similar soil, topographic and management characteristics (except for tillage and tile installation on the south field in 2012, preceded by more than 20 years of no-till operations). Three years of daily discharge, total suspended solids, soluble P, soluble N (NO3 and NH4), total P, total N, and crop yields were utilized to verify the model performance. Prevalent BMPs simulated within the modeling framework included drainage water management, tillage and crop rotations, the 4Rs framework (right fertilizer source, rate, time, and placement), and bioreactors. Results of the study quantify the ability of the numerical model to simulate hydrology and P transport for surface runoff and subsurface tile drainage and highlight modifications that improve model performance. Further, results highlight BMPs that effectively reduce P loads to streams while maintaining crop yields, which can later be used to inform BMPs

  20. Sustainable intensification in agricultural systems

    PubMed Central

    Pretty, Jules; Bharucha, Zareen Pervez

    2014-01-01

    Background Agricultural systems are amended ecosystems with a variety of properties. Modern agroecosystems have tended towards high through-flow systems, with energy supplied by fossil fuels directed out of the system (either deliberately for harvests or accidentally through side effects). In the coming decades, resource constraints over water, soil, biodiversity and land will affect agricultural systems. Sustainable agroecosystems are those tending to have a positive impact on natural, social and human capital, while unsustainable systems feed back to deplete these assets, leaving fewer for the future. Sustainable intensification (SI) is defined as a process or system where agricultural yields are increased without adverse environmental impact and without the conversion of additional non-agricultural land. The concept does not articulate or privilege any particular vision or method of agricultural production. Rather, it emphasizes ends rather than means, and does not pre-determine technologies, species mix or particular design components. The combination of the terms ‘sustainable’ and ‘intensification’ is an attempt to indicate that desirable outcomes around both more food and improved environmental goods and services could be achieved by a variety of means. Nonetheless, it remains controversial to some. Scope and Conclusions This review analyses recent evidence of the impacts of SI in both developing and industrialized countries, and demonstrates that both yield and natural capital dividends can occur. The review begins with analysis of the emergence of combined agricultural–environmental systems, the environmental and social outcomes of recent agricultural revolutions, and analyses the challenges for food production this century as populations grow and consumption patterns change. Emergent criticisms are highlighted, and the positive impacts of SI on food outputs and renewable capital assets detailed. It concludes with observations on policies and

  1. Environmental economics reality check: a case study of the Abanico Medicinal Plant and Organic Agriculture Microenterprise Project.

    PubMed

    Isla, Ana; Thompson, Shirley

    2003-01-01

    This paper presents a case study of the Abanico Medicinal Plant and Organic Agriculture Microenterprise Project in the Arenal Conservation Area, Costa Rica. Microenterprise is the Sustainable Development and the Women in Development model for gender equity and environment of the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and large non-government organizations, like the World Wildlife Fund-Canada. The authors of this paper argue that debt-for-nature investment in microenterprise and ecological economic models are not distinct from neoclassical economic and development models that created the environmental, social and cultural crises in the first place. This case study shows that the world market accommodates only one model of development: unsustainable export-oriented production based on flexible labour markets, low wages, indebtedness and low cost production. Working standards in those micro-enterprises are eroded due to many factors,including indebtedness. What happened at a national level in non-industrial countries with the international debt crisis is now mirrored in individual indebtedness through microenterprise. Is current development policy creating a new form of indentured servitude? Medicinal plants, prior to commodification, were a source of women's power and upon commodification in international development projects, are the source of their exploitation. PMID:12859005

  2. Environmental concentrations of agricultural-use pesticide mixtures evoke primary and secondary stress responses in rainbow trout.

    PubMed

    Tierney, Keith B; Williams, Jessica L; Gledhill, Melissa; Sekela, Mark A; Kennedy, Christopher J

    2011-11-01

    The present study sought to determine whether environmentally realistic mixtures of agriculturally important pesticides are stressful to fish. Juvenile rainbow trout were exposed for 96 h to concentrations of a pesticide mixture found in a waterway that is the focus of salmon restoration efforts (Nicomekl River, BC, Canada). This mixture contained organochlorine, organophosphorus, phenylurea, and triazine classes of pesticides. Fish given a realistic mixture exposure (total concentration, 1.01 µg/L) had increased plasma cortisol concentration, packed red cell volume, hematocrit (Hct), as well as decreased white cell volume, leukocrit (Lct). Similar changes in Hct and Lct were apparent after exposure to a lower concentration (0.186 µg/L). Interestingly, no changes in plasma cortisol concentration, Hct, or Lct were noted after exposure to a higher concentration (13.9 µg/L). This suggests that the exposure likely impaired the mechanisms enabling the stress response. Across all exposures, plasma glucose concentration was related to plasma cortisol concentration, not to pesticide mixture concentration. This suggests that a secondary stress response may be more related to variability in individual primary stress response than to differences in pesticide exposure concentrations. In summary, the present study indicates that salmon living in agrichemical-contaminated waterways may be experiencing stress, and this may pose a threat to their survival. PMID:21898556

  3. Biogeosystem technique as a method to overcome the Biological and Environmental Hazards of modern Agricultural, Irrigational and Technological Activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalinitchenko, Valery; Batukaev, Abdulmalik; Zinchenko, Vladimir; Zarmaev, Ali; Magomadov, Ali; Chernenko, Vladimir; Startsev, Viktor; Bakoev, Serojdin; Dikaev, Zaurbek

    2014-05-01

    Modern challenge for humanity is to replace the paradigm of nature use and overcome environmental hazards of agronomy, irrigation, industry, and other human activities in biosphere. It is utterly reasonable to stop dividing biosphere on shares - the human habitat and the environment. In the 21st century it is an outdated anthropocentrism. Contradicting himself to biosphere Humankind has the problems. The new paradigm of biosphere control by methods of Biogeosystem technique is on agenda of Humankind. Key directions of Biogeosystem technique. Tillage. Single rotary milling 20…30-50…60 sm soil layer optimizes the evolution and environment of soil, creates a favorable conditions for the rhizosphere, increases the biological productivity of biosphere by 30-50% compared to the standard agricultural practices for the period up to 40 years. Recycle material. Recycling of mineral and organic substances in soil layer of 20…30-50…60 sm in rotary milling soil processing provides wastes clean return to biosphere. Direct intrasoil substances synthesis. Environmentally friendly robot wasteless nanotechnology provides direct substances synthesis, including fertilizers, inside the soil. It eliminates the prerequisites of the wastes formation under standard industrial technologies. Selective substance's extraction from soil. Electrochemical robotic nanotechnology provides selective substances extraction from soil. The technology provides recovery, collection and subsequent safe industrial use of extracted substances out of landscape. Saving fresh water. An important task is to save fresh water in biosphere. Irrigation spends water 4-5 times more of biological requirements of plants, leads to degradation of soil and landscape. The intrasoil pulse continuous-discrete paradigm of irrigation is proposed. It provides the soil and landscape conservation, increases the biological productivity, save the fresh water up to 10-20 times. The subsurface soil rotary processing and

  4. Can Schools Offer Solutions to Small-Scale Farmers in Africa? Analysis of the Socioeconomic Benefits of Primary School Agriculture in Uganda

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Okiror, John James; Oonyu, Joseph; Matsiko, Frank; Kibwika, Paul

    2011-01-01

    Agriculture;This paper discusses the factors influencing application of school gardening knowledge and skills by pupils at school and household level; and whether pupils are effective sources of information to their parents. A quasi-experimental design was used to compare cohorts of 30 pupils randomly selected from eight schools in Kumi and Tororo…

  5. Co-benefits, trade-offs, barriers and policies for greenhouse gas mitigation in the agriculture, forestry and other land use (AFOLU) sector.

    PubMed

    Bustamante, Mercedes; Robledo-Abad, Carmenza; Harper, Richard; Mbow, Cheikh; Ravindranat, Nijavalli H; Sperling, Frank; Haberl, Helmut; Pinto, Alexandre de Siqueira; Smith, Pete

    2014-10-01

    The agriculture, forestry and other land use (AFOLU) sector is responsible for approximately 25% of anthropogenic GHG emissions mainly from deforestation and agricultural emissions from livestock, soil and nutrient management. Mitigation from the sector is thus extremely important in meeting emission reduction targets. The sector offers a variety of cost-competitive mitigation options with most analyses indicating a decline in emissions largely due to decreasing deforestation rates. Sustainability criteria are needed to guide development and implementation of AFOLU mitigation measures with particular focus on multifunctional systems that allow the delivery of multiple services from land. It is striking that almost all of the positive and negative impacts, opportunities and barriers are context specific, precluding generic statements about which AFOLU mitigation measures have the greatest promise at a global scale. This finding underlines the importance of considering each mitigation strategy on a case-by-case basis, systemic effects when implementing mitigation options on the national scale, and suggests that policies need to be flexible enough to allow such assessments. National and international agricultural and forest (climate) policies have the potential to alter the opportunity costs of specific land uses in ways that increase opportunities or barriers for attaining climate change mitigation goals. Policies governing practices in agriculture and in forest conservation and management need to account for both effective mitigation and adaptation and can help to orient practices in agriculture and in forestry towards global sharing of innovative technologies for the efficient use of land resources. Different policy instruments, especially economic incentives and regulatory approaches, are currently being applied however, for its successful implementation it is critical to understand how land-use decisions are made and how new social, political and economic forces

  6. DO CHILDREN BENEFIT FROM INCREASING CIGARETTE TAXES? ACCOUNTING FOR THE ENDOGENEITY OF LUNG HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL TOBACCO SMOKE EXPOSURE

    EPA Science Inventory

    My research investigates the relationship between environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) exposure and lung function in children. I use detailed individual health data from the Third National Health and Nutrition Survey (NHANES III) to measure the effect of environmental tobacco smoke ...

  7. From "connecting the dots" to "threading the needle:" The challenges ahead in managing agricultural landscapes for environmental quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Non point source pollution from agriculture is one of the most challenging problems facing society. In this book chapter, we briefly review the development of “landscape thinking” in agriculture and how this has been incorporated into the USDA Conservation Effects Assessment Program (CEAP). We pre...

  8. A threshold area ratio of organic to conventional agriculture causes recurrent pathogen outbreaks in organic agriculture.

    PubMed

    Adl, S; Iron, D; Kolokolnikov, T

    2011-05-01

    Conventional agriculture uses herbicides, pesticides, and chemical fertilizers that have the potential to pollute the surrounding land, air and water. Organic agriculture tries to avoid using these and promotes an environmentally friendly approach to agriculture. Instead of relying on herbicides, pesticides and chemical fertilizers, organic agriculture promotes a whole system approach to managing weeds, pests and nutrients, while regulating permitted amendments. In this paper, we consider the effect of increasing the total area of agricultural land under organic practices, against a background of conventional agriculture. We hypothesized that at a regional scale, organic agriculture plots benefit from existing in a background of conventional agriculture, that maintains low levels of pathogens through pesticide applications. We model pathogen dispersal with a diffusive logistic equation in which the growth/death rate is spatially heterogeneous. We find that if the ratio of the organic plots to conventional plots remains below a certain threshold l(c), the pest population is kept small. Above this threshold, the pest population in the organic plots grows rapidly. In this case, the area in organic agriculture will act as a source of pest to the surrounding region, and will always infect organic plots as they become more closely spaced. Repeated localized epidemics of pest outbreaks threaten global food security by reducing crop yields and increasing price volatility. We recommend that regional estimates of this threshold are necessary to manage the growth of organic agriculture region by region. PMID:21420722

  9. Studies by the U.S. Geological Survey on sources, transport, and fate of agricultural chemicals

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Capel, Paul D.; Hamilton, Pixie A.; Erwin, Martha L.

    2004-01-01

    Information from these studies will help with decision-making related to chemical use, conservation, and other farming practices that are used to reduce runoff of agricultural chemicals and sediment from fields. This information also will benefit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Agriculture, local and regional water managers, and agricultural chemical manufacturers who are involved in managing chemical use and pesticide registration.

  10. Environmental benefits and risks of zero-valent iron nanoparticles (nZVI) for in situ remediation: risk mitigation or trade-off?

    PubMed

    Grieger, Khara D; Fjordbøge, Annika; Hartmann, Nanna B; Eriksson, Eva; Bjerg, Poul L; Baun, Anders

    2010-11-25

    The use of nanoscaled zero-valent iron particles (nZVI) to remediate contaminated soil and groundwater has received increasing amounts of attention within the last decade, primarily due to its potential for broader application, higher reactivity, and cost-effectiveness compared to conventional zero-valent iron applications and other in situ methods. However, the potential environmental risks of nZVI in in situ field scale applications are largely unknown at the present and traditional environmental risk assessment approaches are not yet able to be completed. Therefore, it may not yet be fully clear how to consider the environmental benefits and risks of nZVI for in situ applications. This analysis therefore addresses the challenges of comprehensively considering and weighing the expected environmental benefits and potential risks of this emerging environmentally-beneficial nanotechnology, particularly relevant for environmental engineers, scientists, and decision makers. We find that most of the benefits of using nZVI are based on near-term considerations, and large data gaps currently exist within almost all aspects of environmental exposure and effect assessments. We also find that while a wide range of decision support tools and frameworks alternative to risk assessment are currently available, a thorough evaluation of these should be undertaken in the near future to assess their full relevancy for nZVI at specific sites. Due to the absence of data in environmental risk evaluations, we apply a 'best' and 'worst' case scenario evaluation as a first step to qualitatively evaluate the current state-of-knowledge regarding the potential environmental risks of nZVI. The result of this preliminary qualitative evaluation indicates that at present, there are no significant grounds on which to form the basis that nZVI currently poses a significant, apparent risk to the environment, although the majority of the most serious criteria (i.e. potential for persistency

  11. Impact assessment of treated/untreated wastewater toxicants discharged by sewage treatment plants on health, agricultural, and environmental quality in the wastewater disposal area.

    PubMed

    Singh, Kunwar P; Mohan, Dinesh; Sinha, Sarita; Dalwani, R

    2004-04-01

    Studies were undertaken to assess the impact of wastewater/sludge disposal (metals and pesticides) from sewage treatment plants (STPs) in Jajmau, Kanpur (5 MLD) and Dinapur, Varanasi (80 MLD), on health, agriculture and environmental quality in the receiving/application areas around Kanpur and Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh, India. The raw, treated and mixed treated urban wastewater samples were collected from the inlet and outlet points of the plants during peak (morning and evening) and non-peak (noon) hours. The impact of the treated wastewater toxicants (metals and pesticides) on the environmental quality of the disposal area was assessed in terms of their levels in different media samples viz., water, soil, crops, vegetation, and food grains. The data generated show elevated levels of metals and pesticides in all the environmental media, suggesting a definite adverse impact on the environmental quality of the disposal area. The critical levels of the heavy metals in the soil for agricultural crops are found to be much higher than those observed in the study areas receiving no effluents. The sludge from the STPs has both positive and negative impacts on agriculture as it is loaded with high levels of toxic heavy metals and pesticides, but also enriched with several useful ingredients such as N, P, and K providing fertilizer values. The sludge studied had cadmium, chromium and nickel levels above tolerable levels as prescribed for agricultural and lands application. Bio-monitoring of the metals and pesticides levels in the human blood and urine of the different population groups under study areas was undertaken. All the different approaches indicated a considerable risk and impact of heavy metals and pesticides on human health in the exposed areas receiving the wastewater from the STPs. PMID:14761695

  12. 7 CFR 15a.56 - Fringe benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Fringe benefits. 15a.56 Section 15a.56 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture EDUCATION PROGRAMS OR ACTIVITIES RECEIVING OR BENEFITTING FROM... Activities Prohibited § 15a.56 Fringe benefits. (a) “Fringe benefits” defined. For purposes of this...

  13. 7 CFR 15a.56 - Fringe benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Fringe benefits. 15a.56 Section 15a.56 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture EDUCATION PROGRAMS OR ACTIVITIES RECEIVING OR BENEFITTING FROM... Activities Prohibited § 15a.56 Fringe benefits. (a) “Fringe benefits” defined. For purposes of this...

  14. 7 CFR 15a.56 - Fringe benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Fringe benefits. 15a.56 Section 15a.56 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture EDUCATION PROGRAMS OR ACTIVITIES RECEIVING OR BENEFITTING FROM... Activities Prohibited § 15a.56 Fringe benefits. (a) “Fringe benefits” defined. For purposes of this...

  15. 7 CFR 15a.56 - Fringe benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Fringe benefits. 15a.56 Section 15a.56 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture EDUCATION PROGRAMS OR ACTIVITIES RECEIVING OR BENEFITTING FROM... Activities Prohibited § 15a.56 Fringe benefits. (a) “Fringe benefits” defined. For purposes of this...

  16. 7 CFR 15a.56 - Fringe benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Fringe benefits. 15a.56 Section 15a.56 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture EDUCATION PROGRAMS OR ACTIVITIES RECEIVING OR BENEFITTING FROM... Activities Prohibited § 15a.56 Fringe benefits. (a) “Fringe benefits” defined. For purposes of this...

  17. 76 FR 49291 - Agricultural Swaps

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-08-10

    ... Commission recently promulgated a final rule defining the term ``agricultural commodity.'' See 76 FR 41048... Agricultural Swaps, 76 FR 6095, February 3, 2011. \\8\\ See Agricultural Swaps, 75 FR 59666, Sept. 28, 2010. C... specifically addressing the costs and benefits of the proposed agricultural swaps rules. \\10\\ See NPRM, 76...

  18. Biopolymers in controlled release devices for agricultural applications.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The use of biopolymers such as starch for agricultural applications including controlled release devices is growing due the environmental benefits. Recently, concerns have grown about the worldwide spread of parasitic mites (Varroa destructor) that infect colonies of honey bees (Apis mellifera L.). ...

  19. Comparison of Online Agricultural Information Services.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reneau, Fred; Patterson, Richard

    1984-01-01

    Outlines major online agricultural information services--agricultural databases, databases with agricultural services, educational databases in agriculture--noting services provided, access to the database, and costs. Benefits of online agricultural database sources (availability of agricultural marketing, weather, commodity prices, management…

  20. Future directions for agricultural phosphorus research

    SciTech Connect

    Sikora, F.J.

    1992-03-01

    Future Directions for Agricultural Phosphorus Research is a collection of papers presented at a workshop in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, on July 18 and 19, 1990. The objective of the workshop was to gather representatives of academia, government, and industry to discuss and debate research needs with phosphorus in agriculture, ranging from basic to applied research. The enclosed papers present information on current knowledge in the areas of (1) identifying phosphorus solid phases in soil, (ii) enhanced phosphorus bioavailability through microbial activity, (iii) phosphorus rock quality, (iv) environmental issues regarding phosphorus in agriculture, (v) predicting phosphorus bioavailability in soil, and (vi) fertilizer management effects on phosphorus availability. Within each paper, the authors suggest future research needs in their area. With the discussion of current knowledge and future research needs, this publication was designed to benefit organizations formulating and developing research plans concerning phosphorus in agricultural systems.

  1. But the replaced refrigerator was landfilled: A method for including environmental benefits and costs in least-cost utility planning (LCUP)

    SciTech Connect

    Bernard, M.J. III.

    1990-01-01

    We are entering a decade of enhanced environmental awareness. While considerable agreement exists that accounting for environmental externalities in least-cost utility planning is important, in actual practice environmental considerations are often given qualitative attention, at best. Given the political difficulty in deriving financial tests of demand-side projects, this is not surprising. Each step --- from energy extraction, through one or more conversions, transport and transmission, and to use --- could impact the environment considerably. So might the extraction of materials for the production and the disposal of related hardware. To mitigate these effects state and federal legislation requires such actions as land reclamation, emission controls, and improved energy conversion efficiency. For example, think about the above title. The replaced refrigerator's foam insulation and freon contain CFCs. Its metal has value. But the evaluation of the utility's high-efficiency refrigerator rebate program did not account for the cost of disposing of the refrigerator in an environmentally sound manner, i.e., it missed some costs. Understanding environmental aspects of demand-side programs and the methods to include them in planning puts most practitioners of utility planning in an unfamiliar arena. This paper describes a process of including environmental planning and environmental costs and benefits in utility planning. It is based on the classical planning process and a method for making the trade-offs among environmental and other effects of utility programs is discussed. It then discusses the types of environmental impacts that can be expected from various types of demand- and supply-side utility programs and gives a detailed example of the environmental concerns associated with an electric utility's introduction of electric vehicles in an urban area. 8 refs., 5 figs.

  2. 7 CFR 1466.36 - Environmental credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Environmental credits for conservation improvements... QUALITY INCENTIVES PROGRAM General Administration § 1466.36 Environmental credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  3. 7 CFR 1466.36 - Environmental credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Environmental credits for conservation improvements... QUALITY INCENTIVES PROGRAM General Administration § 1466.36 Environmental credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  4. 7 CFR 1466.36 - Environmental credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Environmental credits for conservation improvements... QUALITY INCENTIVES PROGRAM General Administration § 1466.36 Environmental credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  5. 7 CFR 1466.36 - Environmental credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Environmental credits for conservation improvements... QUALITY INCENTIVES PROGRAM General Administration § 1466.36 Environmental credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  6. 7 CFR 1466.36 - Environmental credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Environmental credits for conservation improvements... QUALITY INCENTIVES PROGRAM General Administration § 1466.36 Environmental credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  7. Application of integrated remote sensing and GIS technologies to geological, agricultural, water and environmental issues in far west Texas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Hongjie

    This study focuses on applying integrated remote sensing and GIS technologies to geological, agricultural, water and environmental studies in the far west Texas area. The primary technical topics that have been investigated and employed include radar image processing, speckle removal, destriping, data fusion, seamless image mosaicking technology, mask and ROI techniques, DEM processing and 3D visualization, image classification techniques, gravity and magnetic data processing, algorithm implementation for automatic image registration, ArcView/ArcInfo GIS techniques, and GIS database building. JPL/NASA's AIRSAR/TOPSAR is a multipolarimetric, multiwavelength, and interferometric airborne synthetic aperture radar capable of imaging in C-, L-, and P-bands (5.7, 24.5, and 68 cm). The study mainly focuses on its preprocessing, despeckling, and destriping. Among statistical adaptive speckle removal algorithms, G-MAP (Gamma Maximum A Posteriori) had the best performance. For banding removal, we derived a new method that we call combined principal components analysis (CPCA) that was very effective with our data. Signature differences were studied and compared at different radar wavelengths and between radar and optical (ETM+) images. Some subsurface objects (like water pipelines) were clearly visible in the radar images, especially for the P-band. Data fusion based on the color transform technique was employed to integrate Landsat 7 (30 m ETM+ data fused with the accompanying 15 m panchromatic data) and TOPSAR data after speckle and banding removal. The resulting fused image brought out new features that were not evident in the original images and helped identify many features whose origin was not clear in the original images. AIRSAR/TOPSAR and TM/ETM+ images have been successfully used for mapping the East Franklin Mountains fault scarp and related small faults within the Hueco bolson as well as the Mayfield fault scarp. Remote sensing analysis of nuclear waste disposal

  8. Environmental and petroleum resource conflicts: a simulation model to determine the benefits of petroleum production in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Goerold, W.T.

    1987-01-01

    The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), located on the Alaska North Slope, is believed to contain high petroleum production potential. This region also has outstanding wildlife and wilderness values. Currently ANWR is closed to oil and gas leasing. However, Congress is considering an Interior Department recommendation to open a portion of ANWR to oil and gas production. Environmentalists maintain that petroleum exploration and development will have severe environmental impacts. A draft study by the Interior Department reports values that are used to generate an expected present value of the net economic benefits of petroleum development in ANWR of $2.98 billion. Alternatively, using updated oil price projections and revised tax and financial assumptions, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Financial Analysis Simulation Model (AFAM) projects the expected present value of net economic benefits of oil production at between $0.32 and $1.39 billion. AFAM results indicate that, within most drilling cost scenarios, oil producers would earn an aftertax profit in 100% of the simulation trials. However, in a high-cost drilling scenario, AFAM projects aftertax losses to oil producers in 45% of the simulation trials. Although the Interior Department does not report a range of net economic benefits from oil development of ANWR, AFAM indicates that the distribution of net economic benefits across all scenarios is positively skewed. Net economic benefits from oil development range from $0 to $4.75 billion with a greater probability of benefits closer to the lower value. Decision makers considering whether or not to open ANWR to petroleum development can use these values to judge if the economic benefits outweigh the projected negative wilderness and wildlife impacts. 10 references, 9 figures, 6 tables.

  9. Effects of agricultural conservation practices on N loads in the Mississippi-Atchafalya River Basin

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A modeling framework consisting of a farm-scale model, Agricultural Policy Environmental Extender (APEX); a watershedscale model, Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT); and databases was used in the Conservation Effects Assessment Project to quantify the environmental benefits of conservation practi...

  10. Environmental damage costs from airborne pollution of industrial activities in the greater Athens, Greece area and the resulting benefits from the introduction of BAT

    SciTech Connect

    Mirasgedis, S. Hontou, V.; Georgopoulou, E.; Sarafidis, Y.; Gakis, N.; Lalas, D.P.; Loukatos, A.; Gargoulas, N.; Mentzis, A.; Economidis, D.; Triantafilopoulos, T.; Korizi, K.; Mavrotas, G.

    2008-01-15

    Attributing costs to the environmental impacts associated with industrial activities can greatly assist in protecting human health and the natural environment as monetary values are capable of directly influencing technological and policy decisions without changing the rules of the market. This paper attempts to estimate the external cost attributable to the atmospheric pollution from 'medium and high environmental burden' industrial activities located in the greater Athens area and the benefits from Best Available Techniques (BAT) introduction. To this end a number of typical installations were defined to be used in conjunction with the Impact Pathway Approach developed in the context of the ExternE project to model all industrial sectors/sub-sectors located in the area of interest. Total environmental externalities due to air pollutants emitted by these industrial activities were found to reach 211 M Euro per year, associated mainly with human mortality and morbidity due to PM{sub 10} emissions, as well as with climate change impacts due to CO{sub 2} emissions for which non-metallic minerals and oil processing industries are the main sources. The results obtained can be used as the basis for an integrated evaluation of potential BAT, taking into account not only private costs and benefits but also the environmental externalities, thus leading to policy decisions that maximize social welfare in each industrial sector/sub-sector.

  11. Political benefits as barriers to assessment of environmental costs in Brazil`s Amazonian development planning: The example of the Jatapu Dam in Roraima

    SciTech Connect

    Fearnside, P.M.; Barbosa, R.I.

    1996-09-01

    Development projects are rapidly changing the landscape in Brazilian Amazonia. Environmental impact assessments have been required since 1986, and the regulatory system is evolving as precedents are set by each new development project. The Jatapu Dam in Roraima provides an illustration of underlying impediments to assessment of environmental costs and to due consideration being given to these assessments when decisions are made. The high priority placed on the dam by the Roraima state government is unexplainable in terms of economic returns. The place of the dam in a long-term political strategy provides the best of several possible explanations, any one of which is incompatible with a {open_quotes}rational{close_quotes} weighing of economic and environmental costs and benefits. A number of lessons can be drawn from the experience of Jatapu apply to development projects in many parts of the world. 49 refs., 5 figs., 3 tabs.

  12. Agricultural Aircraft for Site-Specific Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural aircraft provide a convenient platform to aid in precision agriculture, in which pesticide, fertilizer or other field inputs are applied only where they are needed. This saves on chemical and farm resources, and reduces environmental loading. Remote sensing is used to spot areas of the ...

  13. The impacts of inherent soil properties, environmental conditions, and restoration time on ecological benefits during CRP restoration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) has numerous benefits including reduced soil erosion, increased C sequestration, and biodiversity through the conversion of highly erodible cropland to grasslands. The rate and magnitude of these changes varies and the factors that impact these changes are larg...

  14. METHODS DEVELOPMENT FOR ASSESSING AIR POLLUTION CONTROL BENEFITS. VOLUME IV. STUDIES ON PARTIAL EQUILIBRIUM APPROACHES TO VALUATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL AMENITIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The research presented in this volume of a five volume study of the economic benefits of air pollution control explores various facets of the two central project objectives that have not been given adequate attention in the previous volumes. The valuations developed in these prev...

  15. Agriculture Education. Agriculture Structures.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuttgart Public Schools, AR.

    This curriculum guide is designed for group instruction of secondary agricultural education students enrolled in one or two semester-long courses in agriculture structures. The guide presents units of study in the following areas: (1) shop safety, (2) identification and general use of hand tools, (3) power tools, (4) carpentry, (5) blueprint…

  16. Farming for Ecosystem Services: An Ecological Approach to Production Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Philip Robertson, G.; Gross, Katherine L.; Hamilton, Stephen K.; Landis, Douglas A.; Schmidt, Thomas M.; Snapp, Sieglinde S.; Swinton, Scott M.

    2014-01-01

    A balanced assessment of ecosystem services provided by agriculture requires a systems-level socioecological understanding of related management practices at local to landscape scales. The results from 25 years of observation and experimentation at the Kellogg Biological Station long-term ecological research site reveal services that could be provided by intensive row-crop ecosystems. In addition to high yields, farms could be readily managed to contribute clean water, biocontrol and other biodiversity benefits, climate stabilization, and long-term soil fertility, thereby helping meet society's need for agriculture that is economically and environmentally sustainable. Midwest farmers—especially those with large farms—appear willing to adopt practices that deliver these services in exchange for payments scaled to management complexity and farmstead benefit. Surveyed citizens appear willing to pay farmers for the delivery of specific services, such as cleaner lakes. A new farming for services paradigm in US agriculture seems feasible and could be environmentally significant. PMID:26955069

  17. Comparison of production-phase environmental impact metrics derived at the farm- and national-scale for United States agricultural commodities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costello, Christine; Xue, Xiaobo; Howarth, Robert W.

    2015-11-01

    Agricultural production is critical for human survival and simultaneously contributes to ecosystem degradation. There is a need for transparent, rapid methods for evaluating the environmental impacts of agricultural production at the system-level in order to develop sustainable food supplies. We have developed a method for estimating the greenhouse gas (GHG), land use and reactive nitrogen inputs associated with the agricultural production phase of major crop and livestock commodities produced in the United States (US). Materials flow analysis (MFA) and life cycle assessment (LCA) techniques were applied to national inventory datasets. The net anthropogenic nitrogen inputs (NANI) toolbox served as the primary accounting tool for LCA and MFA. NANI was updated to create links between nitrogen fertilizer and nitrogen fixation associated with feed crops and animal food commodities. Results for the functional units kilogram (kg) of product and kg of protein for 2002 data fall within ranges of published LCA results from farm-scale studies across most metrics. Exceptions include eutrophication potential for milk and GHGs for chicken and eggs, these exceptions arise due to differing methods and boundary assumptions; suggestions for increasing agreement are identified. Land use for livestock commodities are generally higher than reported by other LCA studies due to the inclusion of all land identified as pasture or grazing land in the US in this study and given that most of the estimates from other LCAs were completed in Europe where land is less abundant. The method provides a view of the entire US agricultural system and could be applied to any year using publically available data. Additionally, utilizing a top-down approach reduces data collection and processing time making it possible to develop environmental inventory metrics rapidly for system-level decision-making.

  18. Mining Environmental Data from a Coupled Modelling System to Examine the Impact of Agricultural Management Practices on Groundwater and Air Quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia, V.; Cooter, E. J.; Hayes, B.; Murphy, M. S.; Bash, J. O.

    2014-12-01

    Excess nitrogen (N) resulting from current agricultural management practices can leach into sources of drinking water as nitrate, increasing human health risks of 'blue baby syndrome', hypertension, and some cancers and birth defects. Nitrogen also enters the atmosphere from land surfaces forming air pollution increasing human health risks of pulmonary and cardio-vascular disease. Characterizing and attributing nitrogen from agricultural management practices is difficult due to the complex and inter-related chemical and biological reactions associated with the nitrogen cascade. Coupled physical process-based models, however, present new opportunities to investigate relationships among environmental variables on new scales; particularly because they link emission sources with meteorology and the pollutant concentration ultimately found in the environment. In this study, we applied a coupled meteorology (NOAA-WRF), agricultural (USDA-EPIC) and air quality modelling system (EPA-CMAQ) to examine the impact of nitrogen inputs from corn production on ecosystem and human health and wellbeing. The coupled system accounts for the nitrogen flux between the land surface and air, and the soil surface and groundwater, providing a unique opportunity to examine the effect of management practices such as type and timing of fertilization, tilling and irrigation on both groundwater and air quality across the conterminous US. In conducting the study, we first determined expected relationships based on literature searches and then identified model variables as direct or surrogate variables. We performed extensive and methodical multi-variate regression modelling and variable selection to examine associations between agricultural management practices and environmental condition. We then applied the regression model to predict and contrast pollution levels between two corn production scenarios (Figure 1). Finally, we applied published health functions (e.g., spina bifida and cardio

  19. Investigation of environmental change pattern in Japan. Observation of present state of agricultural land-use by analysing LANDSAT data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maruyasu, T. (Principal Investigator); Hayashi, S.

    1977-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. Species and ages of grasses in pastures were identified, and soils were classified into several types using LANDSAT data. This data could be used in a wide area of cultivation, reclamation, or management planning on agricultural land.

  20. Environmental effects of agricultural conservation: A framework for research in two watersheds in Oklahoma's Upper Washita River Basin

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture in the Upper Washita River Basin represents mixed crop-livestock systems of the Southern Plains. Research was established in two sub-watersheds, the Little Washita River Experimental Watershed and the Fort Cobb Reservoir Experimental Watershed, to quantify interactive effects of variable...

  1. Stronger management needed to protect agricultural environment

    SciTech Connect

    Cai Shikui

    1983-01-01

    This article examines environmental issues and management in developed agricultural areas of China. Agricultural environmental management is defined as the adoption of countermeasures by applying the theories and methods of environmental science and management science and abiding by economic laws and ecological laws to prevent pollution of the agricultural environment and destruction of the agro-ecology by man; to coordinate the relationship between the development of agricultural production and the protection of the agricultural environment and to satisfy increasing demands for agricultural by-products. Topics considered include the basis for developing agricultural environmental management, the present condition of the agricultural environment in China, and several management proposals.

  2. Benefits of biochar, compost and biochar-compost for soil quality, maize yield and greenhouse gas emissions in a tropical agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Agegnehu, Getachew; Bass, Adrian M; Nelson, Paul N; Bird, Michael I

    2016-02-01

    Soil quality decline represents a significant constraint on the productivity and sustainability of agriculture in the tropics. In this study, the influence of biochar, compost and mixtures of the two on soil fertility, maize yield and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions was investigated in a tropical Ferralsol. The treatments were: 1) control with business as usual fertilizer (F); 2) 10 t ha(-1) biochar (B)+F; 3) 25 t ha(-1) compost (Com)+F; 4) 2.5 t ha(-1) B+25 t ha(-1) Com mixed on site+F; and 5) 25 t ha(-1) co-composted biochar-compost (COMBI)+F. Total aboveground biomass and maize yield were significantly improved relative to the control for all organic amendments, with increases in grain yield between 10 and 29%. Some plant parameters such as leaf chlorophyll were significantly increased by the organic treatments. Significant differences were observed among treatments for the δ(15)N and δ(13)C contents of kernels. Soil physicochemical properties including soil water content (SWC), total soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen (N), available phosphorus (P), nitrate-nitrogen (NO3(-)N), ammonium-nitrogen (NH4(+)-N), exchangeable cations and cation exchange capacity (CEC) were significantly increased by the organic amendments. Maize grain yield was correlated positively with total biomass, leaf chlorophyll, foliar N and P content, SOC and SWC. Emissions of CO2 and N2O were higher from the organic-amended soils than from the fertilizer-only control. However, N2O emissions generally decreased over time for all treatments and emission from the biochar was lower compared to other treatments. Our study concludes that the biochar and biochar-compost-based soil management approaches can improve SOC, soil nutrient status and SWC, and maize yield and may help mitigate greenhouse gas emissions in certain systems. PMID:26590867

  3. PLANNING CHANGE: CASE STUDIES ILLUSTRATING THE BENEFITS OF GIS AND LAND-USE DATA IN ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING

    EPA Science Inventory

    A well-established protocol for planning environmentally sustainable development has yet to be agreed upon. Experiences from two highly-studied basins in the United States illustrate some early attempts, their successes, and the obstacles that continue to impede widespread adopt...

  4. DEMONSTRATION OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL AND DEMAND-SIDE MANAGEMENT BENEFITS OF GRID-CONNECTED PHOTOVOLTAIC POWER SYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    This study investigated the pollutant emission reduction and demand-side management potential of 16 photovoltaic (PV) systems installed across the U.S. in 1993 and 1994. The project was sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and 11 electric utilities. This ar...

  5. Financial competitiveness of organic agriculture on a global scale

    PubMed Central

    Crowder, David W.; Reganold, John P.

    2015-01-01

    To promote global food and ecosystem security, several innovative farming systems have been identified that better balance multiple sustainability goals. The most rapidly growing and contentious of these systems is organic agriculture. Whether organic agriculture can continue to expand will likely be determined by whether it is economically competitive with conventional agriculture. Here, we examined the financial performance of organic and conventional agriculture by conducting a meta-analysis of a global dataset spanning 55 crops grown on five continents. When organic premiums were not applied, benefit/cost ratios (−8 to −7%) and net present values (−27 to −23%) of organic agriculture were significantly lower than conventional agriculture. However, when actual premiums were applied, organic agriculture was significantly more profitable (22–35%) and had higher benefit/cost ratios (20–24%) than conventional agriculture. Although premiums were 29–32%, breakeven premiums necessary for organic profits to match conventional profits were only 5–7%, even with organic yields being 10–18% lower. Total costs were not significantly different, but labor costs were significantly higher (7–13%) with organic farming practices. Studies in our meta-analysis accounted for neither environmental costs (negative externalities) nor ecosystem services from good farming practices, which likely favor organic agriculture. With only 1% of the global agricultural land in organic production, our findings suggest that organic agriculture can continue to expand even if premiums decline. Furthermore, with their multiple sustainability benefits, organic farming systems can contribute a larger share in feeding the world. PMID:26034271

  6. 7 CFR 274.2 - Providing benefits to participants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Providing benefits to participants. 274.2 Section 274.2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOOD STAMP AND FOOD DISTRIBUTION PROGRAM ISSUANCE AND USE OF PROGRAM BENEFITS § 274.2 Providing benefits to participants....

  7. 7 CFR 274.2 - Providing benefits to participants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Providing benefits to participants. 274.2 Section 274.2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOOD STAMP AND FOOD DISTRIBUTION PROGRAM ISSUANCE AND USE OF PROGRAM BENEFITS § 274.2 Providing benefits to participants....

  8. 7 CFR 274.7 - Benefit redemption by eligible households.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Benefit redemption by eligible households. 274.7 Section 274.7 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOOD STAMP AND FOOD DISTRIBUTION PROGRAM ISSUANCE AND USE OF PROGRAM BENEFITS § 274.7 Benefit redemption by...

  9. 7 CFR 274.7 - Benefit redemption by eligible households.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Benefit redemption by eligible households. 274.7 Section 274.7 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOOD STAMP AND FOOD DISTRIBUTION PROGRAM ISSUANCE AND USE OF PROGRAM BENEFITS § 274.7 Benefit redemption by...

  10. Political Benefits as Barriers to Assessment of Environmental Costs in Brazil's Amazonian Development Planning: The Example of the Jatapu Dam in Roraima

    PubMed

    Fearnside; Barbosa

    1996-09-01

    Development projects are rapidly changing the landscape in Brazilian Amazonia. Environmental impact assessments have been required since 1986, and the regulatory system is evolving as precedents are set by each new development project. The Jatapu Dam in Roraima provides an illustration of underlying impediments to assessment of environmental costs and to due consideration being given to these assessments when decisions are made. The high priority placed on the dam by the Roraima state government is unexplainable in terms of economic returns. The place of the dam in a long-term political strategy provides the best of several possible explanations, any one of which is incompatible with a "rational" weighing of economic and environmental costs and benefits. A number of lessons can be drawn from the experience of Jatapu, but some of the problems have no solution. The barriers to rational decision making illustrated by Jatapu apply to development projects in many parts of the world.KEY WORDS: Jatapu Dam; Amazonia; Dams; Hydroelectric development; Brazil; Tropical forest; Environmental impact assessment PMID:8703101

  11. SPS microwave subsystem potential impacts and benefits. [environmental and societal effects of Solar Power System construction and operation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dickinson, R. M.

    1978-01-01

    The paper examines the possible environmental and societal effects of the construction, installation, and operation of the space end and earth end of the microwave power transmission subsystem that delivers satellite power system (SPS) energy (at about 5 GW per beam) to the power grid on earth. The intervening propagation medium near the earth is also considered. Separate consideration is given to the spacecraft transmitting array, propagation in the ionosphere, and the ground-based rectenna. Radio frequency interference aspects are also discussed.

  12. Methods for Valuation of Environmental Costs and Benefits of Hydroelectric Facilities : A Case Study of the Sultan River Project : Final Report.

    SciTech Connect

    BioSystems Analysis, Inc.

    1984-06-05

    The Bonneville Power Administration is required by the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act (Public Law 96-501) to include quantifiable environmental costs and benefits of alternative electric power resources in determining their cost-effectiveness. In responding to this requirement, BPA has contracted to develop and test methodologies for valuing environmental costs of various types of power resources, including hydroelectric facilities. The purpose of this study is to develop and test valuation methods for hydroelectric facilities, using the Sultan River Project as a case study. The case study approach offers several advantages and some disadvantages which should be considered in interpreting this report. Its primary advantage lies in providing a real-world example against which to test theoretical valuation approaches. Using data that were actually collected for a project that has received detailed scrutiny from its sponsor and from numerous regulatory agencies allows more realistic formulation of valuation issues and also provides a better test of the practicality and usefulness of valuation methods. On the other hand, results derived from such an approach must be used with discretion. First and most obvious, both the features of a hydroproject and its environmental impacts may vary widely from site to site. Second, it cannot be assumed that the results of these test exercises for the Sultan River Project represent any kind of generic hydroelectric environmental cost. A third caution is directed to those who may be tempted to regard this report as a definitive estimate of the environmental costs of the Sultan River Project. It is not. A fourth important point is only external or residual environmental costs are developed in this report. Finally, it should be noted that these methodologies were developed to meet the needs of BPA's process for determining resource cost-effectiveness.

  13. Evaluation of aquatic biota in relation to environmental characteristics measured at multiple scales in agricultural streams of the Midwest, 1993-2004

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hambrook Berkman, Julie A.; Scudder, Barbara C.; Lutz, Michelle A.; Harris, Mitchell A.

    2010-01-01

    This study evaluated the relations between algal, invertebrate, and fish assemblages and physical environmental characteristics of streams at the reach, segment, and watershed scale in agricultural settings in the Midwest. The 86 stream sites selected for study were in predominantly agricultural watersheds sampled as part of the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment Program. Species abundance and over 130 biological metrics were used to determine which aspects of the assemblages were most sensitive to change at the three spatial scales. Digital orthophotograph-based riparian land use/land cover was used for analyses of riparian conditions at the reach and segment scales. The percentage area of different land-use/land-cover types was also determined for each watershed. Out of over 230 environmental characteristics examined, those that best explained variation in the biotic assemblages at each spatial scale include the following: 1) reach: bank vegetative cover, fine silty substrate, and open canopy angle; 2) segment: woody vegetation and cropland in the 250-m riparian buffer, and average length of undisturbed buffer; and 3) watershed: land use/land cover (both total forested and row crop), low-permeability soils, slope, drainage area, and latitude. All three biological assemblages, especially fish, correlated more with land use/land cover and other physical characteristics at the watershed scale than at the reach or segment scales. This study identifies biotic measures that can be used to evaluate potential improvements resulting from agricultural best-management practices and other conservation efforts, as well as evaluate potential impairment from urban development or other disturbances.

  14. Multidimensional Cost–Benefit Analysis to Guide Evidence-Based Environmental Enrichment: Providing Bedding and Foraging Substrate to Pen-Housed Monkeys

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, Allyson J; Corcoran, Christopher A; Hardy, Vickie A; Miller, Leslie R; Pierre, Peter J

    2010-01-01

    Refinement of animal care and housing is an important shared goal—and challenge—of the team of research, veterinary, and animal care personnel charged with ensuring the wellbeing of laboratory animals. This study addresses 2 issues central to decision-making and implementation of environmental enhancement: methods for useful and comprehensive cost analysis and evaluation of engineering, husbandry, and facilities considerations. The study was undertaken to analyze the feasibility and cost of providing wood shavings as a floor cover for pen-housed monkeys. The beneficial effects of bedding for the welfare of laboratory-housed animals have long been validated. Our study illustrates a workable team-based procedure for comprehensive cost analysis of an important environmental enhancement and demonstrates that the animal welfare benefit is accompanied by decreased husbandry costs. An engineering solution to the potential challenge that wood shavings pose in terms of clogging water pipes was successful. Another successful outcome was the reduction in water (estimated at 192,000 gal annually) and chemicals used to clean housing areas. Emphasis on rigorous evaluation and objective measures of cost and benefit, as well as inclusion of the many factors and teams involved in animal research, holds strong potential for building a better foundation from which to contribute effective changes and improvements in laboratory animal welfare. Taken together, the findings of this study demonstrate that team-based, integrative, and scientific evaluation of environmental enhancement is an effective approach to guide selection of strategies with maximal potential for improving animal welfare. PMID:20858357

  15. Agriculture and Water Quality. Issues in Agricultural Policy. Agriculture Information Bulletin Number 548.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crowder, Bradley M.; And Others

    Agriculture generates byproducts that may contribute to the contamination of the United States' water supply. Any effective regulations to ban or restrict agricultural chemical or land use practices in order to improve water quality will affect the farm economy. Some farmers will benefit; some will not. Most agricultural pollutants reach surface…

  16. Toward a Sustainable Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Future trends in population growth, energy use, climate change, and globalization will challenge agriculturists to develop innovative production systems that are highly productive and environmentally sound. Furthermore, future agricultural production systems must possess an inherent capacity to adap...

  17. Long-term assessment of the environmental fate of heavy metals in agricultural soil after cessation of organic waste treatments.

    PubMed

    Kwon, Soon-Ik; Jang, Yeon-A; Owens, Gary; Kim, Min-Kyeong; Jung, Goo-Bok; Hong, Seung-Chang; Chae, Mi-Jin; Kim, Kwon-Rae

    2014-06-01

    The current study examined the anthropogenic accumulation and natural decrease in metal concentrations in agricultural soils following organic waste application. Three common organic wastes, including municipal sewage sludge, alcohol fermentation processing sludge, and pig manure compost (PMC), were applied annually to an agricultural soil under field conditions over 7 years (1994-2000) at a rate of 12.5, 25, and 50 ton ha(-1) year(-1) and the soil accumulation of three metals of concern (Cu, Pb, and Zn) was monitored. Subsequently, organic waste amendments ceased and the experimental plots were managed using conventional fertilization for another 10 years (2001-2010) and the natural decrease in metal concentrations monitored. Although Cu and Zn concentrations in all experimental plots did not exceed the relevant guideline values (150 mg kg(-1) for Cu and 300 mg kg(-1) for Zn), significant increases in metal concentrations were observed from cumulative application of organic wastes over 7 years. For instance, PMC treatment resulted in an increase in Cu and Zn from 9.8 and 72 mg kg(-1) to 108.2 and 214.3 mg kg(-1), respectively. In addition, the natural decrease in Cu and Zn was not significant as soils amended with PMC showed only a 16 and 19 % decline in Cu and Zn concentrations, respectively, even 10 years after amendment ceased. This research suggested that more attention must be paid during production of organic waste-based amendments and at the application stage. PMID:24026571

  18. Environmental benefits of replacing fuel oil by natural gas in the metropolitan region of Sao Paulo, Brazil

    SciTech Connect

    Kondo, S.; Assuncao, J.V. de

    1998-12-31

    The Metropolitan Region of Sao Paulo (Brazil) has a population 16.322 million people (1995 estimate) living in an area of 8,051 km2 with most of them concentrated in the city of Sao Paulo with 9.8 million people and 4.6 million cars. Although with an air quality better than some other Latin American megacities such as Mexico and Santiago do Chile, the air quality still exceeds the national air quality standards. In 2/17/1993 Brazilian Petroleum Company (PETROBRAS) and the Bolivian Petroleum Company (Yacimientos Petroliferos Fiscales Bolivianos -- YPFB) signed an agreement to bring natural gas from Bolivia to the south and southeast of Brazil. The end of the construction of the gas pipeline will be in 1999, and it will deliver 4 million Nm3/day of natural gas to COMGAS Sao Paulo State Gas Company. This amount will increase to 8.1 million Nm3/day by the year 2006, that will be sufficient to supply the Sao Paulo Metropolitan Region market need at that time. In this study an estimate of the influence in the air quality was performed supposing the substitution of fuel oil by natural gas in industry and also in diesel buses. The results showed that there will be benefits in relation to sulfur dioxide, PM10, greenhouse gases and trace elements, and negligible effects in relation to NO{sub x}, NMTOC and carbon monoxide.

  19. 7 CFR 1465.36 - Environmental services credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Environmental services credits for conservation... MANAGEMENT ASSISTANCE General Administration § 1465.36 Environmental services credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  20. 7 CFR 1465.36 - Environmental services credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Environmental services credits for conservation... MANAGEMENT ASSISTANCE General Administration § 1465.36 Environmental services credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  1. 7 CFR 1465.36 - Environmental services credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Environmental services credits for conservation... MANAGEMENT ASSISTANCE General Administration § 1465.36 Environmental services credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  2. 7 CFR 1465.36 - Environmental services credits for conservation improvements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Environmental services credits for conservation... MANAGEMENT ASSISTANCE General Administration § 1465.36 Environmental services credits for conservation improvements. NRCS recognizes that environmental benefits will be achieved by implementing...

  3. Agricultural sustainability: concepts, principles and evidence.

    PubMed

    Pretty, Jules

    2008-02-12

    Concerns about sustainability in agricultural systems centre on the need to develop technologies and practices that do not have adverse effects on environmental goods and services, are accessible to and effective for farmers, and lead to improvements in food productivity. Despite great progress in agricultural productivity in the past half-century, with crop and livestock productivity strongly driven by increased use of fertilizers, irrigation water, agricultural machinery, pesticides and land, it would be over-optimistic to assume that these relationships will remain linear in the future. New approaches are needed that will integrate biological and ecological processes into food production, minimize the use of those non-renewable inputs that cause harm to the environment or to the health of farmers and consumers, make productive use of the knowledge and skills of farmers, so substituting human capital for costly external inputs, and make productive use of people's collective capacities to work together to solve common agricultural and natural resource problems, such as for pest, watershed, irrigation, forest and credit management. These principles help to build important capital assets for agricultural systems: natural; social; human; physical; and financial capital. Improving natural capital is a central aim, and dividends can come from making the best use of the genotypes of crops and animals and the ecological conditions under which they are grown or raised. Agricultural sustainability suggests a focus on both genotype improvements through the full range of modern biological approaches and improved understanding of the benefits of ecological and agronomic management, manipulation and redesign. The ecological management of agroecosystems that addresses energy flows, nutrient cycling, population-regulating mechanisms and system resilience can lead to the redesign of agriculture at a landscape scale. Sustainable agriculture outcomes can be positive for food

  4. Emission projections for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Section 812 second prospective Clean Air Act cost/benefit analysis.

    PubMed

    Wilson, James H; Mullen, Maureen A; Bollman, Andrew D; Thesing, Kirstin B; Salhotra, Manish; Divita, Frank; Neumann, James E; Price, Jason C; DeMocker, James

    2008-05-01

    Section 812 of the Clean Air Act Amendments (CAAA) of 1990 requires the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to perform periodic, comprehensive analyses of the total costs and total benefits of programs implemented pursuant to the CAAA. The first prospective analysis was completed in 1999. The second prospective analysis was initiated during 2005. The first step in the second prospective analysis was the development of base and projection year emission estimates that will be used to generate benefit estimates of CAAA programs. This paper describes the analysis, methods, and results of the recently completed emission projections. There are several unique features of this analysis. One is the use of consistent economic assumptions from the Department of Energy's Annual Energy Outlook 2005 (AEO 2005) projections as the basis for estimating 2010 and 2020 emissions for all sectors. Another is the analysis of the different emissions paths for both with and without CAAA scenarios. Other features of this analysis include being the first EPA analysis that uses the 2002 National Emission Inventory files as the basis for making 48-state emission projections, incorporating control factor files from the Regional Planning Organizations (RPOs) that had completed emission projections at the time the analysis was performed, and modeling the emission benefits of the expected adoption of measures to meet the 8-hr ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS), the Clean Air Visibility Rule, and the PM2.5 NAAQS. This analysis shows that the 1990 CAAA have produced significant reductions in criteria pollutant emissions since 1990 and that these emission reductions are expected to continue through 2020. CAAA provisions have reduced volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions by approximately 7 million t/yr by 2000, and are estimated to produce associated VOC emission reductions of 16.7 million t by 2020. Total oxides of nitrogen (NO(x)) emission reductions attributable to the

  5. Joint environmental assessment 1997--2001 of the California Department of Food and Agriculture Curly Top Virus Control Program for Bureau of Land Management and Department of Energy

    SciTech Connect

    1997-03-01

    The DOE, Naval Petroleum reserves in California (NPRC), proposes to sign an Amendment to the Cooperative Agreement and Supplement with the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to extend the term of the Curly Top Virus Control Program (CTVCP) in California. This program involves Malathion spraying on NPRC lands to control the beet leafhopper, over a five year period from 1997 through 2001. It is expected that approximately 330 acres on Naval Petroleum Reserve Number 1 (NPR-1) and approximately 9,603 acres on Naval Petroleum Reserve Number 2 (NPR-2) will be treated with Malathion annually by CDFA during the course of this program. The actual acreage subject to treatment can vary from year to year. Pursuant to the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), as amended, the potential impacts of the proposed action were analyzed in a Joint Environmental Assessment (DOE/EA-1011) with the US Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) acting as lead agency, in consultation with the CDFA, and the DOE acting as a cooperating agency. Based on the analysis in the EA, DOE has determined that the conduct of the Curly Top Virus Control Program in California is not a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment, within the meaning of the NEPA. Therefore, the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement is not required and DOE is consequently issuing a FONSI.

  6. Costs and benefits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1975-01-01

    Two models of cost benefit analysis are illustrated and the application of these models to assessing the economic scope of space applications programs was discussed. Four major areas cited as improvable through space derived information - food supply and distribution, energy sources, mineral reserves, and communication and navigation were - discussed. Specific illustrations are given for agriculture and maritime traffic.

  7. Environmental Fate of the Herbicide Fluazifop-P-butyl and Its Degradation Products in Two Loamy Agricultural Soils: A Combined Laboratory and Field Study.

    PubMed

    Badawi, Nora; Rosenbom, Annette E; Olsen, Preben; Sørensen, Sebastian R

    2015-08-01

    The herbicide fluazifop-P-butyl (FPB) is used against grasses in agricultural crops such as potato, oilseed rape, and sugar beet. Limited information is available in scientific literature on its environmental fate, therefore extensive monitoring at two agricultural test fields was combined with laboratory studies to determine leaching and the underlying degradation and sorption processes. Water samples from drains, suction cups, and groundwater wells showed leaching of the degradation products fluazifop-P (FP) and 2-hydroxy-5-trifluoromethyl-pyridin (TFMP) following FPB treatment. Laboratory experiments with soil from each field revealed a rapid degradation of FPB to FP. The degradation was almost exclusively microbial, and further biodegradation to TFMP occurred at a slower rate. Both degradation products were sorbed to the two soils to a small extent and were fairly persistent to degradation during the two-month incubation period. Together, the field and laboratory results from this study showed that the biodegradation of FPB in loamy soils gave rise to the production of two major degradation products that sorbed to a small extent. In this study, both degradation products leached to drainage and groundwater during precipitation. It is therefore recommended that these degradation products be included in programs monitoring water quality in areas with FPB use. PMID:26147883

  8. Late Holocene environmental reconstructions and their implications on flood events, typhoon, and agricultural activities in NE Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, L.-C.; Behling, H.; Lee, T.-Q.; Li, H.-C.; Huh, C.-A.; Shiau, L.-J.; Chang, Y.-P.

    2014-10-01

    We reconstructed paleoenvironmental changes from a sediment archive of a lake in the floodplain of the Ilan Plain of NE Taiwan on multi-decadal resolution for the last ca. 1900 years. On the basis of pollen and diatom records, we evaluated past floods, typhoons, and agricultural activities in this area which are sensitive to the hydrological conditions in the western Pacific. Considering the high sedimentation rates with low microfossil preservations in our sedimentary record, multiple flood events were. identified during the period AD 100-1400. During the Little Ice Age phase 1 (LIA 1 - AD 1400-1620), the abundant occurrences of wetland plant (Cyperaceae) and diatom frustules imply less flood events under stable climate conditions in this period. Between AD 500 and 700 and the Little Ice Age phase 2 (LIA 2 - AD 1630-1850), the frequent typhoons were inferred by coarse sediments and planktonic diatoms, which represented more dynamical climate conditions than in the LIA 1. By comparing our results with the reconstructed changes in tropical hydrological conditions, we suggested that the local hydrology in NE Taiwan is strongly influenced by typhoon-triggered heavy rainfalls, which could be influenced by the variation of global temperature, the expansion of the Pacific warm pool, and the intensification of El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events.

  9. Some key environmental variables controlling nitrous oxide emissions from agricultural and semi-natural soils in Scotland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skiba, U. M.; Sheppard, L. J.; Macdonald, J.; Fowler, D.

    Soil N 2O emissions were measured from a range of mineral soils (22 sites) supporting woodlands, grassland and agriculture between 1991 and 1996 and were co-analysed in order to establish some overriding relationships between the N 2O emission and soil temperature, water content, available NH +4 and NO -3, pH and N input by fertiliser, manure and atmospheric deposition. Fluxes were measured by chamber techniques. For individual sites, nitrogen, soil temperature and water content were the key variables controlling the emission rates. Nitrogen additions by fertilisation, manure and atmospheric deposition increased the emissions of N 2O. From pasture grazed by sheep 1.7% of the N input from fertiliser and animal excreta was emitted as N 2O. For an experimental sitka spruce plantation receiving acid mist and a mixed woodland in the immediate vicinity of a poultry farm losses of N 2O were estimated at 3.7 and 0.8% of the atmospheric N deposited, respectively. In spite of the large variations in land use, soil physical and chemical characteristics of the 22 data sets collected at different years and at varying frequency, the mean flux from each site could be described by following multiple regression equation: log N 2O ( μg N m -2 h -1)=-1.04+0.165∗soil temperature+0.403∗log N input (kg N ha -1 yr -1) -0.0145∗gravimetric soil water content (% soil dry weight).

  10. Cross-resistance to fluconazole induced by exposure to the agricultural azole tetraconazole: an environmental resistance school?

    PubMed

    Rocha, Marcos Fábio Gadelha; Alencar, L P; Paiva, M A N; Melo, Luciana Magalhães; Bandeira, Silviane Praciano; Ponte, Y B; Sales, Jamille Alencar; Guedes, G M M; Castelo-Branco, D S C M; Bandeira, T J P G; Cordeiro, R A; Pereira-Neto, W A; Brandine, G S; Moreira, José Luciano Bezerra; Sidrim, José Júlio Costa; Brilhante, Raimunda Sâmia Nogueira

    2016-05-01

    This study aimed to investigate the influence of tetraconazole and malathion, both used in agricultural activities, on resistance to fluconazole, itraconazole and voriconazole in Candida parapsilosis ATCC 22019. The susceptibility to tetraconazole, malathion, fluconazole, itraconazole and voriconazole, through broth microdilution. Then, 12 independent replicates, were separated and exposed to four treatment groups, each one containing three replicates: G1: tetraconazole; G2: malathion; G3: fluconazole (positive control); G4: negative control. Replicates from G1, G2 and G3, were exposed to weekly increasing concentrations of tetraconazole, malathion and fluconazole, respectively, ranging from MIC/2 to 32 × MIC, throughout 7 weeks. The exposure to tetraconazole, but not malathion, decreased susceptibility to clinical azoles, especially fluconazole. The tetraconazole-induced fluconazole resistance is partially mediated by the increased activity of ATP-dependent efflux pumps, considering the increase in antifungal susceptibility after the addition of the efflux pump inhibitor, promethazine, and the increase in rhodamine 6G efflux and CDR gene expression in the G1 replicates. Moreover, MDR expression was only detected in G1 and G3 replicates, suggesting that MDR pumps are also involved in tetraconazole-induced fluconazole resistance. It is noteworthy that tetraconazole and fluconazole-treated replicates behaved similarly, therefore, resistance to azoles of clinical use may be a consequence of using azoles in farming activities. PMID:26864989

  11. Socio-hydrologic modeling to understand and mediate the competition for water between agriculture development and environmental health: Murrumbidgee River Basin, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Emmerik, T. H. M.; Li, Z.; Sivapalan, M.; Pande, S.; Kandasamy, J.; Savenije, H. H. G.; Chanan, A.; Vigneswaran, S.

    2014-03-01

    Competition for water between humans and ecosystems is set to become a flash point in the coming decades in many parts of the world. An entirely new and comprehensive quantitative framework is needed to establish a holistic understanding of that competition, thereby enabling the development of effective mediation strategies. This paper presents a modeling study centered on the Murrumbidgee River Basin (MRB). The MRB has witnessed a unique system dynamics over the last 100 years as a result of interactions between patterns of water management and climate driven hydrological variability. Data analysis has revealed a pendulum swing between agricultural development and restoration of environmental health and ecosystem services over different stages of basin scale water resource development. A parsimonious, stylized, quasi-distributed coupled socio-hydrologic system model that simulates the two-way coupling between human and hydrological systems of the MRB is used to mimic dominant features of the pendulum swing. The model consists of coupled nonlinear ordinary differential equations that describe the interaction between five state variables that govern the co-evolution: reservoir storage, irrigated area, human population, ecosystem health, and a measure of environmental awareness. The model simulations track the propagation of the external climatic and socio-economic drivers through this coupled, complex system to the emergence of the pendulum swing. The model results point to a competition between human "productive" and environmental "restorative" forces that underpin the pendulum swing. Both the forces are endogenous, i.e., generated by the system dynamics in response to external drivers and mediated by humans through technology change and environmental awareness, respectively. We propose this as a generalizable modeling framework for coupled human hydrological systems that is potentially transferable to systems in different climatic and socio-economic settings.

  12. If you knew what was good for you! The value of environmental enrichments with known welfare benefits is not demonstrated by sows using operant techniques.

    PubMed

    Elmore, Monica Renee Pittman; Garner, Joseph Paul; Johnson, Anna Kerr; Kirkden, Richard D; Richert, Brian Thomas; Pajor, Edmond Anthony

    2012-01-01

    This study assessed the motivation of gestating sows housed in standard, barren gestation stalls (used for breeding/implantation and/or gestation) for access to environmental enrichment. Enrichment consisted of a cotton rope or rubber mat in comparison to positive (additional food when fed at commercial levels) and negative (empty trough) controls. Although environmental enrichment may improve animal welfare, sows' valuation of enrichments is largely unknown. This study used an operant panel and obtained behavioral measures to quantify motivation. As indicated by a higher price paid and lower latencies to press the panel and enter the treatment stall (all comparisons, p < .05), sows demonstrated higher motivation for food compared with all treatments. Sows housed in gestation stalls did not demonstrate high motivation via operant responding for a cotton rope or a rubber mat; nor did they demonstrate any differences in behavioral measures (all comparisons, p > .10). Although sows' motivation for a mat did not differ from that for an empty trough, previous work has demonstrated the welfare benefits associated with comfort flooring. PMID:22742201

  13. A Farming Revolution: Sustainable Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Klinkenborg, Verlyn

    1995-01-01

    Growing realization of the economic, social, and environmental costs of conventional agriculture has led many U.S. farmers to embrace and become advocates for agricultural practices that limit the need for pesticides and chemical fertilizers, decrease soil erosion, and improve soil health. Some hope that sustainable agriculture can promote smaller…

  14. Impact of FGD gypsum soil amendment applications on soil and environmental quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This paper will discuss the utilization of FGD gypsum in agriculture for improving soil quality and other environmental benefits. Gypsum (CaSO4 .2H2O) has been used as an agricultural soil amendment for over 250 years. It is a soluble source of calcium and sulfur- for crops and has been shown to i...

  15. Ruminant Grazing of Cover Crops: Effects on Soil Properties and Agricultural Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poffenbarger, Hanna

    2010-01-01

    Integrating livestock into a cropping system by allowing ruminant animals to graze cover crops may yield economic and environmental benefits. The effects of grazing on soil physical properties, soil organic matter, nitrogen cycling and agricultural production are presented in this literature review. The review found that grazing cover crops…

  16. Seasonal Climate Forecasts and Adoption by Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garbrecht, Jurgen; Meinke, Holger; Sivakumar, Mannava V. K.; Motha, Raymond P.; Salinger, Michael J.

    2005-06-01

    Recent advances in atmospheric and ocean sciences and a better understanding of the global climate have led to skillful climate forecasts at seasonal to interannual timescales, even in midlatitudes. These scientific advances and forecasting capabilities have opened the door to practical applications that benefit society. The benefits include the reduction of weather/climate related risks and vulnerability, increased economic opportunities, enhanced food security, mitigation of adverse climate impacts, protection of environmental quality, and so forth. Agriculture in particular can benefit substantially from accurate long-lead seasonal climate forecasts. Indeed, agricultural production very much depends on weather, climate, and water availability, and unexpected departures from anticipated climate conditions can thwart the best laid management plans. Timely climate forecasts offer means to reduce losses in drought years, increase profitability in good years, deal more effectively with climate variability, and choose from targeted risk-management strategies. In addition to benefiting farmers, forecasts can also help marketing systems and downstream users prepare for anticipated production outcomes and associated consequences.

  17. 7 CFR 1430.204 - Requesting benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Requesting benefits. 1430.204 Section 1430.204... Program § 1430.204 Requesting benefits. (a) A request for benefits or contract application, under this... MILC benefits must certify the accuracy and truthfulness of the information in their...

  18. 7 CFR 1430.204 - Requesting benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Requesting benefits. 1430.204 Section 1430.204... Program § 1430.204 Requesting benefits. (a) A request for benefits or contract application, under this... MILC benefits must certify the accuracy and truthfulness of the information in their...

  19. 7 CFR 1430.204 - Requesting benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Requesting benefits. 1430.204 Section 1430.204... Program § 1430.204 Requesting benefits. (a) A request for benefits or contract application, under this... MILC benefits must certify the accuracy and truthfulness of the information in their...

  20. 7 CFR 1430.204 - Requesting benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Requesting benefits. 1430.204 Section 1430.204... Program § 1430.204 Requesting benefits. (a) A request for benefits or contract application, under this... MILC benefits must certify the accuracy and truthfulness of the information in their...

  1. Mapping intra-field yield variation using high resolution satellite imagery to integrate bioenergy and environmental stewardship in an agricultural watershed

    SciTech Connect

    Hamada, Yuki; Ssegane, Herbert; Negri, Maria Cristina

    2015-07-31

    Biofuels are important alternatives for meeting our future energy needs. Successful bioenergy crop production requires maintaining environmental sustainability and minimum impacts on current net annual food, feed, and fiber production. The objectives of this study were to: (1) determine under-productive areas within an agricultural field in a watershed using a single date; high resolution remote sensing and (2) examine impacts of growing bioenergy crops in the under-productive areas using hydrologic modeling in order to facilitate sustainable landscape design. Normalized difference indices (NDIs) were computed based on the ratio of all possible two-band combinations using the RapidEye and the National Agricultural Imagery Program images collected in summer 2011. A multiple regression analysis was performed using 10 NDIs and five RapidEye spectral bands. The regression analysis suggested that the red and near infrared bands and NDI using red-edge and near infrared that is known as the red-edge normalized difference vegetation index (RENDVI) had the highest correlation (R2 = 0.524) with the reference yield. Although predictive yield map showed striking similarity to the reference yield map, the model had modest correlation; thus, further research is needed to improve predictive capability for absolute yields. Forecasted impact using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool model of growing switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) on under-productive areas based on corn yield thresholds of 3.1, 4.7, and 6.3 Mg·ha-1 showed reduction of tile NO3-N and sediment exports by 15.9%–25.9% and 25%–39%, respectively. Corresponding reductions in water yields ranged from 0.9% to 2.5%. While further research is warranted, the study demonstrated the integration of remote sensing and hydrologic modeling to quantify the multifunctional value of projected future landscape patterns in a context of sustainable bioenergy crop production.

  2. Would banning atrazine benefit farmers?

    PubMed Central

    Ackerman, Frank; Whited, Melissa; Knight, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    Atrazine, an herbicide used on most of the US corn (maize) crop, is the subject of ongoing controversy, with increasing documentation of its potentially harmful health and environmental impacts. Supporters of atrazine often claim that it is of great value to farmers; most recently, Syngenta, the producer of atrazine, sponsored an “Atrazine Benefits Team” (ABT) of researchers who released a set of five papers in 2011, reporting huge economic benefits from atrazine use in US agriculture. A critical review of the ABT papers shows that they have underestimated the growing problem of atrazine-resistant weeds, offered only a partial review of the effectiveness of alternative herbicides, and ignored the promising option of non-chemical weed management techniques. In addition, the most complete economic analysis in the ABT papers implies that withdrawal of atrazine would lead to a decrease in corn yields of 4.4% and an increase in corn prices of 8.0%. The result would be an increase in corn growers’ revenues, equal to US$1.7 billion annually under ABT assumptions. Price impacts on consumers would be minimal: at current levels of ethanol production and use, gasoline prices would rise by no more than US$0.03 per gallon; beef prices would rise by an estimated US$0.01 for a 4-ounce hamburger and US$0.05 for an 8-ounce steak. Thus withdrawal of atrazine would boost farm revenues, while only changing consumer prices by pennies. PMID:24804340

  3. Would banning atrazine benefit farmers?

    PubMed

    Ackerman, Frank; Whited, Melissa; Knight, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    Atrazine, an herbicide used on most of the US corn (maize) crop, is the subject of ongoing controversy, with increasing documentation of its potentially harmful health and environmental impacts. Supporters of atrazine often claim that it is of great value to farmers; most recently, Syngenta, the producer of atrazine, sponsored an "Atrazine Benefits Team" (ABT) of researchers who released a set of five papers in 2011, reporting huge economic benefits from atrazine use in US agriculture. A critical review of the ABT papers shows that they have underestimated the growing problem of atrazine-resistant weeds, offered only a partial review of the effectiveness of alternative herbicides, and ignored the promising option of nonchemical weed management techniques. In addition, the most complete economic analysis in the ABT papers implies that withdrawal of atrazine would lead to a decrease in corn yields of 4.4% and an increase in corn prices of 8.0%. The result would be an increase in corn growers' revenues, equal to US$1.7 billion annually under ABT assumptions. Price impacts on consumers would be minimal: at current levels of ethanol production and use, gasoline prices would rise by no more than US$0.03 per gallon; beef prices would rise by an estimated US$0.01 for a 4-ounce hamburger and US$0.05 for an 8-ounce steak. Thus withdrawal of atrazine would boost farm revenues, while only changing consumer prices by pennies. PMID:24804340

  4. Socio-hydrologic modeling to understand and mediate the competition for water between agriculture development and environmental health: Murrumbidgee River basin, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Emmerik, T. H. M.; Li, Z.; Sivapalan, M.; Pande, S.; Kandasamy, J.; Savenije, H. H. G.; Chanan, A.; Vigneswaran, S.

    2014-10-01

    Competition for water between humans and ecosystems is set to become a flash point in the coming decades in many parts of the world. An entirely new and comprehensive quantitative framework is needed to establish a holistic understanding of that competition, thereby enabling the development of effective mediation strategies. This paper presents a modeling study centered on the Murrumbidgee River basin (MRB). The MRB has witnessed a unique system dynamics over the last 100 years as a result of interactions between patterns of water management and climate driven hydrological variability. Data analysis has revealed a pendulum swing between agricultural development and restoration of environmental health and ecosystem services over different stages of basin-scale water resource development. A parsimonious, stylized, quasi-distributed coupled socio-hydrologic system model that simulates the two-way coupling between human and hydrological systems of the MRB is used to mimic and explain dominant features of the pendulum swing. The model consists of coupled nonlinear ordinary differential equations that describe the interaction between five state variables that govern the co-evolution: reservoir storage, irrigated area, human population, ecosystem health, and environmental awareness. The model simulations track the propagation of the external climatic and socio-economic drivers through this coupled, complex system to the emergence of the pendulum swing. The model results point to a competition between human "productive" and environmental "restorative" forces that underpin the pendulum swing. Both the forces are endogenous, i.e., generated by the system dynamics in response to external drivers and mediated by humans through technology change and environmental awareness, respectively. Sensitivity analysis carried out with the model further reveals that socio-hydrologic modeling can be used as a tool to explain or gain insight into observed co-evolutionary dynamics of diverse

  5. Environmental Sensitive Areas (ESAs) changes in the Canyoles river watershed in Eastern Spain since the European Common Agriculture Policies (CAP) implementation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ángel González Peñaloza, Félix; Cerdà, Artemi

    2014-05-01

    The Enviromental Sensitive Areas (ESAs) approach to study the Land Degradation is a methodology developed by professor Costas Kosmas et al., (1999) to map environmental sensitive areas and then the impact of Land Degradation and desertification on Mediterranean Type Ecosystems (Salvati et al., 2013). This methodology has been applied mainly to the Mediterranean Belt (Lavado Contador et al., 2009), but other authors adapted the methodology to other climatic regions (Izzo et al., 2013). The ESAs methodology allows mapping changes in the distribution of the sensitive areas to Desertification as a consequence of biophysical or human chances. In the Mediterranean countries of Europe, especially Spain, suffered a dramatic change due to the application of the European Common Agricultural Policies (CAP) after 1992. The objective of the CAP was to implemented policies to improve the environmental conditions of agricultural land. This target is especially relevant in Mediterranean areas of Spain, mainly the South and the East of the country. An Environmental Sensitive Area (ESAs) model (Kosmas et al., 2009) was implemented using Geographical Information System (GIS) tools, to identify, assess, monitor and map the levels of sensitivity to land degradation in the Canyoles river watershed, which is a representative landscape of the Mediterranean belt in Eastern Spain The results show that it was found that after the implementation of CAP, the most sensitive areas have expanded. This increase in degraded areas is driven by the expansion of commercial and chemically managed crops that increased the soil erosion (Cerdà et al., 2009) and that few soil conservation strategies were applied (Giménez Morera et al., 2010). Another factor that triggered Desertification processes is the increase in the recurrencesof forest fires as a consequence of land abandonment (Cerdà and Lasanta, 2005; Cerdà and Doerr, 2007). This contributed to an increase of scrubland. Our research show an

  6. Shifting Patterns of Agricultural Diversity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Although monocultural cropping systems can provide the greatest yield efficiency in the short term, more diverse agricultural landscapes may contribute multiple ecosystem benefits. The USDA's Cropland Data Layer provides a yearly map of the agricultural lands of the continental United States broken ...

  7. Barriers to Uptake of Conservation Agriculture in southern Africa: Multi-level Analyses from Malawi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dougill, Andrew; Stringer, Lindsay; Whitfield, Stephen; Wood, Ben; Chinseu, Edna

    2015-04-01

    Conservation agriculture is a key set of actions within the growing body of climate-smart agriculture activities being advocated and rolled out across much of the developing world. Conservation agriculture has purported benefits for environmental quality, food security and the sustained delivery of ecosystem services. In this paper, new multi-level analyses are presented, assessing the current barriers to adoption of conservation agriculture practices in Malawi. Despite significant donor initiatives that have targeted conservation agriculture projects, uptake rates remain low. This paper synthesises studies from across 3 levels in Malawi: i.) national level- drawing on policy analysis, interviews and a multi-stakeholder workshop; ii.) district level - via assessments of development plans and District Office and extension service support, and; iii) local level - through data gained during community / household level studies in Dedza District that have gained significant donor support for conservation agriculture as a component of climate smart agriculture initiatives. The national level multi-stakeholder Conservation Agriculture workshop identified three areas requiring collaborative research and outlined routes for the empowerment of the National Conservation Agriculture Task Force to advance uptake of conservation agriculture and deliver associated benefits in terms of agricultural development, climate adaptation and mitigation. District level analyses highlight that whilst District Development Plans are now checked against climate change adaptation and mitigation criteria, capacity and knowledge limitations exist at the District level, preventing project interventions from being successfully up-scaled. Community level assessments highlight the need for increased community participation at the project-design phase and identify a pressing requirement for conservation agriculture planning processes (in particular those driven by investments in climate

  8. Agricultural Production.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lehigh County Area Vocational-Technical School, Schnecksville, PA.

    This brochure describes the philosophy and scope of a secondary-level course in agricultural production. Addressed in the individual units of the course are the following topics: careers in agriculture and agribusiness, animal science and livestock production, agronomy, agricultural mechanics, supervised occupational experience programs, and the…

  9. Vocational Agriculture Education. Agricultural Mechanics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Eddie; And Others

    To assist teachers in agricultural mechanics in providing comprehensive instruction to their students, this curriculum guide treats both the mechanical skills and knowlege necessary for this specialized area. Six sections are included, as follow: orientation and safety; agricultural mechanics skills; agricultural power and machinery; agricultural…

  10. A comparison of different regulatory approaches, analysis of the relative benefits of command and control, reflexive law and social licensing in ensuring oil industry compliance with environmentally sustainable practices and obligations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghanaati, Sahar

    This paper explores the relative benefits of command and control, reflexive law and social licensing in ensuring oil industry compliance with environmentally sustainable practices and obligations. Recognizing why oil sands and their development are significant, the background and development are reviewed first, and then the focus is shifted to look at its economics including the benefits, uncertainties and environmental costs of development. This paper examines how lawmakers in Canada have failed to meet their respective obligation. Drawing on environmental provisions, case law and legal scholars’ articles, books and reports, this paper examines the very problematic issue of oil sands regulation. It proposes to provide an in depth analysis of each regulatory forms and their application to the oil sands. It concludes that in order to solve the oil sands regulation challenges, a collaborative stringent enforcement of regulation from both federal and provincial governments, oil industry and public Pressure is required.

  11. Environmental Sensitive Areas (ESAs) changes in the Canyoles river watershed in Eastern Spain since the European Common Agriculture Policies (CAP) implementation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ángel González Peñaloza, Félix; Cerdà, Artemi

    2014-05-01

    The Enviromental Sensitive Areas (ESAs) approach to study the Land Degradation is a methodology developed by professor Costas Kosmas et al., (1999) to map environmental sensitive areas and then the impact of Land Degradation and desertification on Mediterranean Type Ecosystems (Salvati et al., 2013). This methodology has been applied mainly to the Mediterranean Belt (Lavado Contador et al., 2009), but other authors adapted the methodology to other climatic regions (Izzo et al., 2013). The ESAs methodology allows mapping changes in the distribution of the sensitive areas to Desertification as a consequence of biophysical or human chances. In the Mediterranean countries of Europe, especially Spain, suffered a dramatic change due to the application of the European Common Agricultural Policies (CAP) after 1992. The objective of the CAP was to implemented policies to improve the environmental conditions of agricultural land. This target is especially relevant in Mediterranean areas of Spain, mainly the South and the East of the country. An Environmental Sensitive Area (ESAs) model (Kosmas et al., 2009) was implemented using Geographical Information System (GIS) tools, to identify, assess, monitor and map the levels of sensitivity to land degradation in the Canyoles river watershed, which is a representative landscape of the Mediterranean belt in Eastern Spain The results show that it was found that after the implementation of CAP, the most sensitive areas have expanded. This increase in degraded areas is driven by the expansion of commercial and chemically managed crops that increased the soil erosion (Cerdà et al., 2009) and that few soil conservation strategies were applied (Giménez Morera et al., 2010). Another factor that triggered Desertification processes is the increase in the recurrencesof forest fires as a consequence of land abandonment (Cerdà and Lasanta, 2005; Cerdà and Doerr, 2007). This contributed to an increase of scrubland. Our research show an

  12. Capabilities of remote sensing in control of good agricultural and environmental conditions. (Polish Title: Możliwości teledetekcyjnej kontroli utrzymania gruntów rolnych w dobrej kulturze rolnej (GAEC))

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osińska-Skotak, K.; Pluto-Kossakowska, J.; Fijałkowska, A.

    2013-12-01

    Within the framework of the Common Agricultural Policy of the European Union applicants farmers receive subsidies for agricultural production. From 1 January 2009 all farmers receiving payments are required to fulfill the standards adopted by Poland in the framework of cross-compliance. Each member state sets minimum standards for good agricultural and environmental condition (GAEC) on the basis of Council Regulation (EC) No 73/2009. Compliance with these standards is monitored during the annual control campaigns conducted by ARMA in the selected areas. Control campaign mainly includes verification of applications in terms of agricultural area declared by the farmer as eligible for subsidies, as well as control of GAEC requirements. One method of control is a remote sensing method, which is based on interpretation of agricultural parcels on satellite or aerial images and it is mainly used to measure the areas to be subsidies. During this process one may also verify compliance with GAEC. The paper presents an analysis of which of the standards to maintain land in good agricultural condition can be controlled with remote sensing and provides examples of processing supporting the interpretation of satellite images for selected GAEC standards.

  13. Independent steam-electric power plants in the Anthracite region, NE Pennsylvania: Site geology, coal-refuse bank utilization, and environmental benefits

    SciTech Connect

    Inners, J.D.; Edmunds, W.E.; Laregina, J.A.

    1996-12-31

    The Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 created economic incentives that resulted in the proliferation of small independent, coal-refuse burning, steam-electric stations in Pennsylvania during the 1980`s and 1990`s. Eight such plants, ranging from 18 to 83 MW in net power output, have been operating for several years within the Anthracite region of northeastern Pennsylvania, and a ninth (having a net output of 108 MW) has recently come on line in the Lehigh Valley just to the south. All of these plants utilize circulating fluidized-bed combustion boilers in which finely crushed limestone is burned along with pulverized coal-refuse fuel. Seven are cogeneration plants that sell process steam commercially. Heat value of the pulverized coal-refuse used in the boilers ranges from 2,810 to 7,000 BTU/lb; higher values indicate washing of the fuel to remove some non-combustible material. Past episodes of bank-processing for fine coal, in addition to historic changes in coal-preparation and mining methods, give the refuse banks a complex stratigraphy in which beds vary greatly in thickness and quality. Detailed sampling and study of historic air photos are necessary to evaluate the economic potential of each individual bank. Environmental benefits of the Anthracite region`s independent power plants include: (1) removal of many black, barren piles of colliery refuse which contribute to acid-pollution and siltation of streams and (2) reclamation of strip-mined lands through disposal, compaction and grading of the alkaline ash generated by the fluidized-bed boilers.

  14. Designer policy for carbon and biodiversity co-benefits under global change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bryan, Brett A.; Runting, Rebecca K.; Capon, Tim; Perring, Michael P.; Cunningham, Shaun C.; Kragt, Marit E.; Nolan, Martin; Law, Elizabeth A.; Renwick, Anna R.; Eber, Sue; Christian, Rochelle; Wilson, Kerrie A.

    2016-03-01

    Carbon payments can help mitigate both climate change and biodiversity decline through the reforestation of agricultural land. However, to achieve biodiversity co-benefits, carbon payments often require support from other policy mechanisms such as regulation, targeting, and complementary incentives. We evaluated 14 policy mechanisms for supplying carbon and biodiversity co-benefits through reforestation of carbon plantings (CP) and environmental plantings (EP) in Australia’s 85.3 Mha agricultural land under global change. The reference policy--uniform payments (bidders are paid the same price) with land-use competition (both CP and EP eligible for payments), targeting carbon--achieved significant carbon sequestration but negligible biodiversity co-benefits. Land-use regulation (only EP eligible) and two additional incentives complementing the reference policy (biodiversity premium, carbon levy) increased biodiversity co-benefits, but mostly inefficiently. Discriminatory payments (bidders are paid their bid price) with land-use competition were efficient, and with multifunctional targeting of both carbon and biodiversity co-benefits increased the biodiversity co-benefits almost 100-fold. Our findings were robust to uncertainty in global outlook, and to key agricultural productivity and land-use adoption assumptions. The results suggest clear policy directions, but careful mechanism design will be key to realising these efficiencies in practice. Choices remain for society about the amount of carbon and biodiversity co-benefits desired, and the price it is prepared to pay for them.

  15. Decreasing nitrate-N loads to coastal ecosystems with innovative drainage management strategies in agricultural landscapes: An experimental approach

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Controlled drainage in agricultural ditches contributes to a drainage management strategy with potential environmental and production benefits. Innovative drainage strategies including spatially orientated low-grade weirs show promise to significantly improve nutrient (e.g. nitrate-N) reductions by...

  16. Reply to discussion of, "Adapting Existing Models to Examine Effects of Agricultural Conservation Programs on Stream Habitat Quality"

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Annual expenditures by the federal government in the US for agricultural conservation increased about 80% with passage of the 2002 Farm Bill. However, environmental benefits of these programs have not been quantified. A national project is underway to estimate the effect of conservation practices on...

  17. Field test results for nitrogen removal by the constructed wetland component of an agricultural water recycling system

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Wetland Reservoir Subirrigation Systems (WRSIS) are innovative agricultural water recycling systems that can provide economic and environmental benefits. A constructed wetland is a main component of WRSIS, and an important function of this constructed wetland is drainage water treatment of nitrog...

  18. Agriculture, summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baldwin, R.

    1975-01-01

    Applications of remotely sensed data in agriculture are enumerated. These include: predictions of forage for range animal consumption, forest management, soil mapping, and crop inventory and management.

  19. Mapping intra-field yield variation using high resolution satellite imagery to integrate bioenergy and environmental stewardship in an agricultural watershed

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Hamada, Yuki; Ssegane, Herbert; Negri, Maria Cristina

    2015-07-31

    Biofuels are important alternatives for meeting our future energy needs. Successful bioenergy crop production requires maintaining environmental sustainability and minimum impacts on current net annual food, feed, and fiber production. The objectives of this study were to: (1) determine under-productive areas within an agricultural field in a watershed using a single date; high resolution remote sensing and (2) examine impacts of growing bioenergy crops in the under-productive areas using hydrologic modeling in order to facilitate sustainable landscape design. Normalized difference indices (NDIs) were computed based on the ratio of all possible two-band combinations using the RapidEye and the National Agriculturalmore » Imagery Program images collected in summer 2011. A multiple regression analysis was performed using 10 NDIs and five RapidEye spectral bands. The regression analysis suggested that the red and near infrared bands and NDI using red-edge and near infrared that is known as the red-edge normalized difference vegetation index (RENDVI) had the highest correlation (R2 = 0.524) with the reference yield. Although predictive yield map showed striking similarity to the reference yield map, the model had modest correlation; thus, further research is needed to improve predictive capability for absolute yields. Forecasted impact using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool model of growing switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) on under-productive areas based on corn yield thresholds of 3.1, 4.7, and 6.3 Mg·ha-1 showed reduction of tile NO3-N and sediment exports by 15.9%–25.9% and 25%–39%, respectively. Corresponding reductions in water yields ranged from 0.9% to 2.5%. While further research is warranted, the study demonstrated the integration of remote sensing and hydrologic modeling to quantify the multifunctional value of projected future landscape patterns in a context of sustainable bioenergy crop production.« less

  20. Relation between magnetic parameters and nematode abundance in agricultural soils of Portugal--a multidisciplinary study in the scope of environmental magnetism.

    PubMed

    Lourenço, Ana; Esteves, Ivânia; Rocha, Armando; Abrantes, Isabel; Gomes, Celeste

    2015-04-01

    Soil is composed of different types of particles which are either natural or of anthropogenic origin. Anthropogenic particles are often related to the presence of heavy metals and thus provide information on soil quality. Magnetic parameters can detect the presence of such particles and may be used as a proxy for environmental pollution. This study explores the relationships between magnetic particles and the nematofauna of agricultural soils. Magnetic, pedological, microscopy and nematological analyses were conducted in soils collected from major regions of potato production in Portugal. The magnetic characterisation of soils identified regions with magnetic particles with possible anthropogenic origin. Microscopy analysis revealed the presence of spherical particles dominantly composed of Fe, O and C. A positive and significant relationship was found between saturation isothermal remanent magnetisation (SIRM) and mass-specific susceptibility (χ), confirming the importance the ferrimagnetic fraction to magnetic properties. The nematode communities were composed of nematodes belonging to four trophic groups (bacterial feeding, plant feeders, fungal feeders and omnivores/predators). The relationships between magnetic parameters and the nematodes showed that (1) S-25 has a linear correlation with number of nematodes per kilogram of soil and with plant feeders' trophic group and (2) SIRM correlates with the bacterial feeders trophic group. This study reveals that magnetic proxies may provide means for detecting regions with higher levels of pollution, possibly related to heavy metals. Due to the large background variability found in magnetic parameters, the sampling spacial mesh should to be further refined and the input of magnetic minerals needs to be locally calibrated. PMID:25740688

  1. COMMUNITY SUPPORTED AGRICULTURE

    EPA Science Inventory

    NRMRL employees at the Air Pollution Prevention and Control Division in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, are sharing in a unique community agriculture program that supports EPA environmental goals?off the job as well as on. Every Wednesday afternoon, bags of farm-fresh org...

  2. 7 CFR 1437.13 - Multiple benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Multiple benefits. 1437.13 Section 1437.13... General Provisions § 1437.13 Multiple benefits. (a) If a producer is eligible to receive payments under this part and benefits under any other program administered by the Secretary for the same crop...

  3. 7 CFR 1437.13 - Multiple benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Multiple benefits. 1437.13 Section 1437.13... General Provisions § 1437.13 Multiple benefits. (a) If a producer is eligible to receive payments under this part and benefits under any other program administered by the Secretary for the same crop...

  4. 7 CFR 760.1303 - Requesting benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 7 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Requesting benefits. 760.1303 Section 760.1303....1303 Requesting benefits. (a) If as a dairy operation or producer, your records are currently available... by FSA, you do not need to request benefits under this subpart to receive payments. FSA will...

  5. 7 CFR 1437.13 - Multiple benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Multiple benefits. 1437.13 Section 1437.13... General Provisions § 1437.13 Multiple benefits. (a) If a producer is eligible to receive payments under this part and benefits under any other program administered by the Secretary for the same crop...

  6. 7 CFR 1437.13 - Multiple benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Multiple benefits. 1437.13 Section 1437.13... General Provisions § 1437.13 Multiple benefits. (a) If a producer is eligible to receive payments under this part and benefits under any other program administered by the Secretary for the same crop...

  7. 7 CFR 1437.13 - Multiple benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Multiple benefits. 1437.13 Section 1437.13... General Provisions § 1437.13 Multiple benefits. (a) If a producer is eligible to receive payments under this part and benefits under any other program administered by the Secretary for the same crop...

  8. 7 CFR 760.1303 - Requesting benefits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 7 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Requesting benefits. 760.1303 Section 760.1303....1303 Requesting benefits. (a) If as a dairy operation or producer, your records are currently available... by FSA, you do not need to request benefits under this subpart to receive payments. FSA will...

  9. Creating a Consortium to Increase minority and Low-Income Community Participation in Alternative Energy Development, Production and Management Melinda Downing, United States Department of Energy Geraldine Herring, United States Department of Agriculture John Rosenthall, Environmental Justice Conference, Inc

    SciTech Connect

    Downing, M.

    2008-07-01

    America's desire for energy independence places a new demand on alternative fuel production. Additional interest and emphasis are being placed on alternatives such as solar, wind, biofuels and nuclear energy. The nuclear fuel production option brings a new look at risk and residual waste management for a number of communities that have traditionally remained outside the energy debate. With the Federal requirements for environmental justice and public participation in energy and environmental decision-making, proponents of alternative energy production facilities will find themselves participating in discussions of risk, production, storage and disposal of hazardous materials and waste matters with low income and minority members in communities where these facilities are located or wish to locate. The fundamental principal of environmental justice is that all residents should have meaningful and intelligent participation in all aspects of environmental decision-making that could affect their community. Impacted communities must have the resources and ability to effectively marshall data and other information in order to make informed and intelligent decisions. Traditionally, many low-income and minority communities have lacked access to the required information, decision-makers and technical advisers to make informed decisions with respect to various risks that accompany alternative energy production, hazardous materials storage and nuclear waste management. In order to provide the necessary assistance to these communities, the Departments of Energy and Agriculture have teamed with others to cerate the Alternative Energy Consortium. The Alternative Energy Consortium is a collaboration of non-profit organizations, Federal agencies, Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Serving Institutions (HBCU/MSIs), and private sector corporations (energy industry specialists) designed to explore and develop opportunities that empower minorities to own and work

  10. ALTERNATIVES FOR REDUCING INSECTICIDES ON COTTON AND CORN: ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT - SUPPLEMENT 2: PROCEDURES USED IN SETTING UP THE AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION MODEL

    EPA Science Inventory

    The procedures used in setting up the agricultural production model used in a study of alternatives for reducing insecticides on cotton and corn are described. The major analytical tool used is a spatial equilibrium model of U.S. agriculture. This is a linear programming model th...

  11. 7 CFR 274.2 - Providing benefits to participants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ..., including the specific rights to benefits in an EBT system, shall be provided as prescribed under 7 CFR 272... 7 Agriculture 4 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Providing benefits to participants. 274.2 Section 274.2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION...

  12. 7 CFR 274.2 - Providing benefits to participants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ..., including the specific rights to benefits in an EBT system, shall be provided as prescribed under 7 CFR 272... 7 Agriculture 4 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Providing benefits to participants. 274.2 Section 274.2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION...

  13. Agricultural Wastes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jewell, W. J.; Switzenbaum, M. S.

    1978-01-01

    Presents a literature review of agricultural wastes, covering publications of 1976-77. Some of the areas covered are: (1) water characteristics and impacts; (2) waste treatment; (3) reuse of agricultural wastes; and (4) nonpoint pollution sources. A list of 150 references is also presented. (HM)

  14. VOCATIONAL AGRICULTURE.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    California State Dept. of Education, Sacramento. Research Coordinating Unit.

    TO ASSIST THOSE WHO MAKE DECISIONS RELATING TO EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS IN AGRICULTURE, RECENT RESEARCH IN VOCATIONAL AGRICULTURE IS SUMMARIZED. A 1963 STUDY TREATS THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN WORK EXPERIENCE AND STUDENT CHARACTERISTICS, PLANS, AND ASPIRATIONS. STUDIES ON POST-SECONDARY EDUCATION CONCERN GUIDELINES FOR TECHNICIAN PROGRAMS, JUSTIFICATION…

  15. Environmental and social benefits of the targeted intraoperative radiotherapy for breast cancer: data from UK TARGIT-A trial centres and two UK NHS hospitals offering TARGIT IORT

    PubMed Central

    Coombs, Nathan J; Coombs, Joel M; Vaidya, Uma J; Singer, Julian; Bulsara, Max; Tobias, Jeffrey S; Wenz, Frederik; Joseph, David J; Brown, Douglas A; Rainsbury, Richard; Davidson, Tim; Adamson, Douglas J A; Massarut, Samuele; Morgan, David; Potyka, Ingrid; Corica, Tammy; Falzon, Mary; Williams, Norman; Baum, Michael; Vaidya, Jayant S

    2016-01-01

    Objective To quantify the journeys and CO2 emissions if women with breast cancer are treated with risk-adapted single-dose targeted intraoperative radiotherapy (TARGIT) rather than several weeks' course of external beam whole breast radiotherapy (EBRT) treatment. Setting (1) TARGIT-A randomised clinical trial (ISRCTN34086741) which compared TARGIT with traditional EBRT and found similar breast cancer control, particularly when TARGIT was given simultaneously with lumpectomy, (2) 2 additional UK centres offering TARGIT. Participants 485 UK patients (249 TARGIT, 236 EBRT) in the prepathology stratum of TARGIT-A trial (where randomisation occurred before lumpectomy and TARGIT was delivered simultaneously with lumpectomy) for whom geographical data were available and 22 patients treated with TARGIT after completion of the TARGIT-A trial in 2 additional UK breast centres. Outcome measures The shortest total journey distance, time and CO2 emissions from home to hospital to receive all the fractions of radiotherapy. Methods Distances, time and CO2 emissions were calculated using Google Maps and assuming a fuel efficiency of 40 mpg. The groups were compared using the Student t test with unequal variance and the non-parametric Wilcoxon rank-sum (Mann-Whitney) test. Results TARGIT patients travelled significantly fewer miles: TARGIT 21 681, mean 87.1 (SE 19.1) versus EBRT 92 591, mean 392.3 (SE 30.2); had lower CO2 emissions 24.7 kg (SE 5.4) vs 111 kg (SE 8.6) and spent less time travelling: 3 h (SE 0.53) vs 14 h (SE 0.76), all p<0.0001. Patients treated with TARGIT in 2 hospitals in semirural locations were spared much longer journeys (753 miles, 30 h, 215 kg CO2 per patient). Conclusions The use of TARGIT intraoperative radiotherapy for eligible patients with breast cancer significantly reduces their journeys for treatment and has environmental benefits. If widely available, 5 million miles (8 000 000 km) of travel, 170 000 woman-hours and 1200

  16. Can macrophyte harvesting from eutrophic water close the loop on nutrient loss from agricultural land?

    PubMed

    Quilliam, Richard S; van Niekerk, Melanie A; Chadwick, David R; Cross, Paul; Hanley, Nick; Jones, Davey L; Vinten, Andy J A; Willby, Nigel; Oliver, David M

    2015-04-01

    Eutrophication is a major water pollution issue and can lead to excessive growth of aquatic plant biomass (APB). However, the assimilation of nutrients into APB provides a significant target for their recovery and reuse, and harvesting problematic APB in impacted freshwater bodies offers a complementary approach to aquatic restoration, which could potentially deliver multiple wider ecosystem benefits. This critical review provides an assessment of opportunities and risks linked to nutrient recovery from agriculturally impacted water-bodies through the harvesting of APB for recycling and reuse as fertilisers and soil amendments. By evaluating the economic, social, environmental and health-related dimensions of this resource recovery from 'waste' process we propose a research agenda for closing the loop on nutrient transfer from land to water. We identify that environmental benefits are rarely, if ever, prioritised as essential criteria for the exploitation of resources from waste and yet this is key for addressing the current imbalance that sees environmental managers routinely undervaluing the wider environmental benefits that may accrue beyond resource recovery. The approach we advocate for the recycling of 'waste' APB nutrients is to couple the remediation of eutrophic waters with the sustainable production of feed and fertiliser, whilst providing multiple downstream benefits and minimising environmental trade-offs. This integrated 'ecosystem services approach' has the potential to holistically close the loop on agricultural nutrient loss, and thus sustainably recover finite resources such as phosphorus from waste. PMID:25669857

  17. Biosurfactants in agriculture.

    PubMed

    Sachdev, Dhara P; Cameotra, Swaranjit S

    2013-02-01

    Agricultural productivity to meet growing demands of human population is a matter of great concern for all countries. Use of green compounds to achieve the sustainable agriculture is the present necessity. This review highlights the enormous use of harsh surfactants in agricultural soil and agrochemical industries. Biosurfactants which are reported to be produced by bacteria, yeasts, and fungi can serve as green surfactants. Biosurfactants are considered to be less toxic and eco-friendly and thus several types of biosurfactants have the potential to be commercially produced for extensive applications in pharmaceutical, cosmetics, and food industries. The biosurfactants synthesized by environmental isolates also has promising role in the agricultural industry. Many rhizosphere and plant associated microbes produce biosurfactant; these biomolecules play vital role in motility, signaling, and biofilm formation, indicating that biosurfactant governs plant-microbe interaction. In agriculture, biosurfactants can be used for plant pathogen elimination and for increasing the bioavailability of nutrient for beneficial plant associated microbes. Biosurfactants can widely be applied for improving the agricultural soil quality by soil remediation. These biomolecules can replace the harsh surfactant presently being used in million dollar pesticide industries. Thus, exploring biosurfactants from environmental isolates for investigating their potential role in plant growth promotion and other related agricultural applications warrants details research. Conventional methods are followed for screening the microbial population for production of biosurfactant. However, molecular methods are fewer in reaching biosurfactants from diverse microbial population and there is need to explore novel biosurfactant from uncultured microbes in soil biosphere by using advanced methodologies like functional metagenomics. PMID:23280539

  18. Analysis of methods and models for assessing the direct and indirect economic impacts of CO/sub 2/-induced environmental changes in the agricultural sector of the US economy

    SciTech Connect

    Callaway, J.M.; Cronin, F.J.; Currie, J.W.; Tawil, J.

    1982-08-01

    The overall purpose of this research was to assist the US Department of Energy (DOE) in developing methods for assessing the direct and indirect economic impacts due to the effects of increases in the ambient concentration of CO/sub 2/ on agricultural production. First, a comprehensive literature search was undertaken to determine what types of models and methods have been developed, which could be effectively used to conduct assessments of the direct and indirect economic impacts of CO/sub 2/ buildup. Specific attention was focused upon models and methods for assessing the physical impacts of CO/sub 2/-induced environmental changes on crop yields; national and multi-regional agricultural sector models; and macroeconomic models of the US economy. The second task involved a thorough investigation of the research efforts being conducted by other public and private sector organizations in order to determine how more recent analytical methods being developed outside of DOE could be effectively integrated into a more comprehensive analysis of the direct economic impacts of CO/sub 2/ buildup. The third and final task involved synthesizing the information gathered in the first two tasks into a systematic framework for assessing the direct and indirect economic impacts of CO/sub 2/-induced environmental changes originating in the agricultural sector of the US economy. It is concluded that the direct economic impacts of CO/sub 2/ on the agricultural sector and the indirect economic impacts caused by spillover effects from agriculture to other sectors of the economy will be pervasive; however, the direction and magnitude of these impacts on producers and consumers cannot be determined a priori.

  19. The sources of deforestation - implications for sustainable agriculture in Brazil

    SciTech Connect

    Torres-Zorrilla, J.; Arnode, C.

    1992-12-01

    Agricultural equilibrium conditions are used to identify the sources of deforestation in Brazil. The rate which forestland can be converted into agricultural land and meet agricultural and environmental goals is calculated. This serves the task of determining how long agricultural land growth can be maintained until environmental targets are violated.

  20. Agricultural Microbiology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brill, Winston J.

    1981-01-01

    Elucidates strategies for applying microbiological techniques to traditional agricultural practices. Discusses the manipulation of microorganisms that live with plants and also the problems involved in the introduction of new genes into crop plants by recombinant DNA methods. (CS)