Vidyarthy, Gopal Saran
This study was undertaken to identify farmer incentives that led them to adopt wheat crop practices in Aligarh Intensive Agricultural District Program: the association between the farmer's characteristics and adoption groups; the incentives that lead the farmers to adopt recommended wheat crop practices; relationship between identified incentives…
This instructional unit is one of 10 developed by students on various energy-related areas that deals specifically with agricultural energy practices. Its objective is for the student to be able to discuss energy use and conservation of resources in the production of agricultural products. Some topics covered are basic uses of direct energy in…
Nikolaidis, C; Mandalos, P; Vantarakis, A
Chemical fertilizers are used extensively in modern agriculture, in order to improve yield and productivity of agricultural products. However, nutrient leaching from agricultural soil into groundwater resources poses a major environmental and public health concern. The Evros region is one of the largest agricultural areas in Northern Greece, extending over 1.5 million acres of cultivated land. Many of its drinking water resources are of groundwater origin and lie within agricultural areas. In order to assess the impact of agricultural fertilizers on drinking water quality in this region, tap-water samples from 64 different locations were collected and analyzed for the presence of nitrates (NO(3)(-)), nitrites (NO(2)(-)), ammonium (NH(4)(+)), sulfate (SO(4)(-2)) and phosphate (PO(4)(-3)). These chemicals were selected based on the information that ammonium nitrate, ammonium sulfate and inorganic phosphate were the primary fertilizers used in local crop production. NO(3)(-), SO(4)(-2) and PO(4)(-3) levels exceeding accepted values were recorded in 6.25, 4.70 and 9.38% of all sampling points, respectively. NO(2)(-) and NH(4)(+) concentrations, on the other hand, were inside the permitted range. The data generated were introduced into a geographic information system (GIS) program for computer analysis and projection maps representing afflicted areas were created. Our results indicate a profound geographic correlation in the surface distribution of primary contaminants in areas of intensified agricultural production. Thus, drinking water pollution in these areas can be attributed to excessive fertilizer use from agricultural sources.
Tsiafouli, Maria A; Thébault, Elisa; Sgardelis, Stefanos P; de Ruiter, Peter C; van der Putten, Wim H; Birkhofer, Klaus; Hemerik, Lia; de Vries, Franciska T; Bardgett, Richard D; Brady, Mark Vincent; Bjornlund, Lisa; Jørgensen, Helene Bracht; Christensen, Sören; Hertefeldt, Tina D'; Hotes, Stefan; Gera Hol, W H; Frouz, Jan; Liiri, Mira; Mortimer, Simon R; Setälä, Heikki; Tzanopoulos, Joseph; Uteseny, Karoline; Pižl, Václav; Stary, Josef; Wolters, Volkmar; Hedlund, Katarina
Soil biodiversity plays a key role in regulating the processes that underpin the delivery of ecosystem goods and services in terrestrial ecosystems. Agricultural intensification is known to change the diversity of individual groups of soil biota, but less is known about how intensification affects biodiversity of the soil food web as a whole, and whether or not these effects may be generalized across regions. We examined biodiversity in soil food webs from grasslands, extensive, and intensive rotations in four agricultural regions across Europe: in Sweden, the UK, the Czech Republic and Greece. Effects of land-use intensity were quantified based on structure and diversity among functional groups in the soil food web, as well as on community-weighted mean body mass of soil fauna. We also elucidate land-use intensity effects on diversity of taxonomic units within taxonomic groups of soil fauna. We found that between regions soil food web diversity measures were variable, but that increasing land-use intensity caused highly consistent responses. In particular, land-use intensification reduced the complexity in the soil food webs, as well as the community-weighted mean body mass of soil fauna. In all regions across Europe, species richness of earthworms, Collembolans, and oribatid mites was negatively affected by increased land-use intensity. The taxonomic distinctness, which is a measure of taxonomic relatedness of species in a community that is independent of species richness, was also reduced by land-use intensification. We conclude that intensive agriculture reduces soil biodiversity, making soil food webs less diverse and composed of smaller bodied organisms. Land-use intensification results in fewer functional groups of soil biota with fewer and taxonomically more closely related species. We discuss how these changes in soil biodiversity due to land-use intensification may threaten the functioning of soil in agricultural production systems. © 2014 John Wiley
Resource Purpose:The Agricultural Best Management Practice Effectiveness Database contains the results of research projects which have collected water quality data for the purpose of determining the effectiveness of agricultural management practices in reducing pollutants ...
Karp, Daniel S; Rominger, Andrew J; Zook, Jim; Ranganathan, Jai; Ehrlich, Paul R; Daily, Gretchen C
Biodiversity is declining from unprecedented land conversions that replace diverse, low-intensity agriculture with vast expanses under homogeneous, intensive production. Despite documented losses of species richness, consequences for β-diversity, changes in community composition between sites, are largely unknown, especially in the tropics. Using a 10-year data set on Costa Rican birds, we find that low-intensity agriculture sustained β-diversity across large scales on a par with forest. In high-intensity agriculture, low local (α) diversity inflated β-diversity as a statistical artefact. Therefore, at small spatial scales, intensive agriculture appeared to retain β-diversity. Unlike in forest or low-intensity systems, however, high-intensity agriculture also homogenised vegetation structure over large distances, thereby decoupling the fundamental ecological pattern of bird communities changing with geographical distance. This ~40% decline in species turnover indicates a significant decline in β-diversity at large spatial scales. These findings point the way towards multi-functional agricultural systems that maintain agricultural productivity while simultaneously conserving biodiversity. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.
Wu, Xueping; Gebremikael, Mesfin Tsegaye; Wu, Huijun; Cai, Dianxiong; Wang, Bisheng; Li, Baoguo; Zhang, Jiancheng; Li, Yongshan; Xi, Jilong
Microbial mechanisms associated with soil organic carbon (SOC) decomposition are poorly understood. We aim to determine the effects of inorganic and organic fertilizers on soil labile carbon (C) pools, microbial community structure and C mineralization rate under an intensive wheat-maize double cropping system in Northern China. Soil samples in 0–10 cm layer were collected from a nine-year field trial involved four treatments: no fertilizer, CK; nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) fertilizers, NP; maize straw combined with NP fertilizers, NPS; and manure plus straw and NP fertilizers, NPSM. Soil samples were analyzed to determine labile C pools (including dissolved organic C, DOC; light free organic C, LFOC; and microbial biomass C, MBC), microbial community composition (using phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) profiles) and SOC mineralization rate (from a 124-day incubation experiment). This study demonstrated that the application of chemical fertilizers (NP) alone did not alter labile C fractions, soil microbial communities and SOC mineralization rate from those observed in the CK treatment. Whereas the use of straw in conjunction with chemical fertilizers (NPS) became an additional labile substrate supply that decreased C limitation, stimulated growth of all PLFA-related microbial communities, and resulted in 53% higher cumulative mineralization of C compared to that of CK. The SOC and its labile fractions explained 78.7% of the variance of microbial community structure. Further addition of manure on the top of straw in the NPSM treatment did not significantly increase microbial community abundances, but it did alter microbial community structure by increasing G+/G- ratio compared to that of NPS. The cumulative mineralization of C was 85% higher under NPSM fertilization compared to that of CK. Particularly, the NPSM treatment increased the mineralization rate of the resistant pool. This has to be carefully taken into account when setting realistic and effective goals
Li, Jing; Wu, Xueping; Gebremikael, Mesfin Tsegaye; Wu, Huijun; Cai, Dianxiong; Wang, Bisheng; Li, Baoguo; Zhang, Jiancheng; Li, Yongshan; Xi, Jilong
Microbial mechanisms associated with soil organic carbon (SOC) decomposition are poorly understood. We aim to determine the effects of inorganic and organic fertilizers on soil labile carbon (C) pools, microbial community structure and C mineralization rate under an intensive wheat-maize double cropping system in Northern China. Soil samples in 0-10 cm layer were collected from a nine-year field trial involved four treatments: no fertilizer, CK; nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) fertilizers, NP; maize straw combined with NP fertilizers, NPS; and manure plus straw and NP fertilizers, NPSM. Soil samples were analyzed to determine labile C pools (including dissolved organic C, DOC; light free organic C, LFOC; and microbial biomass C, MBC), microbial community composition (using phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) profiles) and SOC mineralization rate (from a 124-day incubation experiment). This study demonstrated that the application of chemical fertilizers (NP) alone did not alter labile C fractions, soil microbial communities and SOC mineralization rate from those observed in the CK treatment. Whereas the use of straw in conjunction with chemical fertilizers (NPS) became an additional labile substrate supply that decreased C limitation, stimulated growth of all PLFA-related microbial communities, and resulted in 53% higher cumulative mineralization of C compared to that of CK. The SOC and its labile fractions explained 78.7% of the variance of microbial community structure. Further addition of manure on the top of straw in the NPSM treatment did not significantly increase microbial community abundances, but it did alter microbial community structure by increasing G+/G- ratio compared to that of NPS. The cumulative mineralization of C was 85% higher under NPSM fertilization compared to that of CK. Particularly, the NPSM treatment increased the mineralization rate of the resistant pool. This has to be carefully taken into account when setting realistic and effective goals
Czajkowski, K.; Ault, T.; Hayase, R.; Benko, T.
Changes in land uses/covers can have a significant effect on the temperature of the Earth's surface. Agricultural fields exhibit a significant change in land cover within a single year and from year to year as different crops are planted. These changes in agricultural practices including tillage practice and crop type influence the energy budget as reflected in differences in surface temperature. In this project, Landsat 5 and 7 imagery were used to investigate the influence of crop type and tillage practice on surface temperature in Iowa and NW Ohio. In particular, the three crop rotation of corn, soybeans and wheat, as well as no-till, conservation tillage and tradition tillage methods, were investigated. Crop type and conservation tillage practices were identified using supervised classification. Student surface temperature observations from the GLOBE program were used to correct for the effects of the atmosphere for some of the satellite thermal observations. Students took surface temperature observations in field sites near there schools using hand- held infrared thermometers.
Phelps, R. A.
Remote sensing program imagery from several types of platforms, from light aircraft to the LANDSAT (ERTS) satellites, have been utilized during the past few years, with preference for inexpensive imagery over expensive magnetic tapes. Emphasis has been on practical application of remote sensing data to increase crop yield by decreasing plant stress, disease, weeds and undesirable insects and by improving irrigation. Imagery obtained from low altitudes via aircraft provides the necessary resolution and complements but does not replace data from high altitude aircraft, Gemini and Apollo spacecraft, Skylab space station and LANDSAT satellites. Federal government centers are now able to supply imagery within about thirty days from data of order. Nevertheless, if the full potential of space imagery in practical agricultural operations is to be realized, the time span from date of imaging to user application needs to be shortened from the current several months to not more than two weeks.
Key, Georgina; Whitfield, Mike G.; Cooper, Julia; De Vries, Franciska T.; Collison, Martin; Dedousis, Thanasis; Heathcote, Richard; Roth, Brendan; Mohammed, Shamal; Molyneux, Andrew; Van der Putten, Wim H.; Dicks, Lynn V.; Sutherland, William J.; Bardgett, Richard D.
The goal of this study is to clarify research needs and identify effective practices for enhancing soil health. This was done by a synopsis of soil literature that specifically tests practices designed to maintain or enhance elements of soil health. Using an expert panel of soil scientists and practitioners, we then assessed the evidence in the soil synopsis to highlight practices beneficial to soil health, practices considered detrimental, and practices that need further investigation. A partial Spearman's correlation was used to analyse the panel's responses. We found that increased certainty in scientific evidence led to practices being considered to be more effective due to them being empirically justified. This suggests that for practices to be considered effective and put into practice, a substantial body of research is needed to support the effectiveness of the practice. This is further supported by the high proportion of practices (33 %), such as changing the timing of ploughing or amending the soil with crops grown as green manures, that experts felt had unknown effectiveness, usually due to insufficiently robust evidence. Only 7 of the 27 reviewed practices were considered to be beneficial, or likely to be beneficial in enhancing soil health. These included the use of (1) integrated nutrient management (organic and inorganic amendments); (2) cover crops; (3) crop rotations; (4) intercropping between crop rows or underneath the main crop; (5) formulated chemical compounds (such as nitrification inhibitors); (6) control of traffic and traffic timing; and (7) reducing grazing intensity. Our assessment, which uses the Delphi technique, is increasingly used to improve decision-making in conservation and agricultural policy, identified practices that can be put into practice to benefit soil health. Moreover, it has enabled us to identify practices that need further research and a need for increased communication between researchers, policy-makers, and
Ghee, Claire; Hallett, Paul; Neilson, Roy; Robinson, David; Paterson, Eric
Application of organic amendments can improve soil quality and provide crop nutrients. To optimise these agricultural benefits from organic applications, the capacity of microbe-driven nutrient and carbon cycling must be understood and exploited. Consideration is therefore required of the complex interactions between the rhizosphere, microbial biomass and organic amendment. We hypothesise that the labile C present in root exudates of plants increases the mineralisation of organic matter in soil, constituting a mechanism to promote nutrient acquisition. This mechanism is known as the 'priming effect', but is poorly understood in the context of agricultural carbon and nutrient management. Field data from the Centre of Sustainable Cropping (CSC) research platform (Dundee, Scotland, UK) are utilised to build an understanding of soil C and N fluxes between contrasting agricultural practices. The field site uses a split-plot design to compare (i) compost amended soils with reduced tillage and chemical inputs and (ii) conventionally managed soils, reflective of current UK commercial arable practice. Significant differences (p= <0.001) were identified between compost amended and conventionally managed soils at field-scale with respect to soil microbial biomass (SMB), total organic carbon (TOC) and mineral nitrogen. Investigation into the priming effect within compost amended soils was subsequently undertaken under laboratory conditions. Stable isotope analysis and measurements of soil biotic parameters were used to quantify priming resulting from Spring Barley (Hordeum vulgare cv. Optic) cultivation for (i) unamended and (ii) municipal compost incorporated soils. Compost treatments comprised amendments of 25, 50 and 150 t/Ha and planted soils were compared with unplanted controls. Soil mesocosms were maintained under controlled environmental conditions within labelling chambers supplied continuously with 13C-depleted CO2. Throughout a 41-day incubation period, soil CO2
Sheng, Ping-Ping; Li, Min; Liu, Run-Jin
Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are rich in diversity in agricultural ecosystem, playing a vital role based on their unique community structure. Host plants and environmental factors have important effects on AM fungal community structure, so do the agricultural practices which deserve to pay attention to. This paper summarized the research advances in the effects of agricultural practices such as irrigation, fertilization, crop rotation, intercropping, tillage, and pesticide application on AM fungal community structure, analyzed the related possible mechanisms, discussed the possible ways in improving AM fungal community structure in agricultural ecosystem, and put forward a set of countermeasures, i.e., improving fertilization system and related integrated techniques, increasing plant diversity in agricultural ecosystem, and inoculating AM fungi, to enhance the AM fungal diversity in agricultural ecosystem. The existing problems in current agricultural practices and further research directions were also proposed.
M'Gonigle, Leithen K; Ponisio, Lauren C; Cutler, Kerry; Kremen, Claire
Widespread evidence of pollinator declines has led to policies supporting habitat restoration including in agricultural landscapes. Yet, little is yet known about the effectiveness of these restoration techniques for promoting stable populations and communities of pollinators, especially in intensively managed agricultural landscapes. Introducing floral resources, such as flowering hedgerows, to enhance intensively cultivated agricultural landscapes is known to increase the abundances of native insect pollinators in and around restored areas. Whether this is a result of local short-term concentration at flowers or indicative of true increases in the persistence and species richness of these communities remains unclear. It is also unknown whether this practice supports species of conservation concern (e.g., those with more specialized dietary requirements). Analyzing occupancies of native bees and syrphid flies from 330 surveys across 15 sites over eight years, we found that hedgerow restoration promotes rates of between-season persistence and colonization as compared with unrestored field edges. Enhanced persistence and colonization, in turn, led to the formation of more species-rich communities. We also find that hedgerows benefit floral resource specialists more than generalists, emphasizing the value of this restoration technique for conservation in agricultural landscapes.
Bates, Hanna; Arbuckle, J. Gordon, Jr.
Agriculture's negative effect on water quality has become increasingly well documented. Farmers have a range of conservation practices available, yet rate of adoption is not optimal. Extension and other agricultural stakeholders play a key role in promotion of conservation practice adoption. We used survey data to examine relationships between…
Sheehan, Oliver; Watts, Joseph; Gray, Russell D; Atkinson, Quentin D
One of the defining trends of the Holocene has been the emergence of complex societies. Two essential features of complex societies are intensive resource use and sociopolitical hierarchy. Although it is widely agreed that these two phenomena are associated cross-culturally and have both contributed to the rise of complex societies, the causality underlying their relationship has been the subject of longstanding debate. Materialist theories of cultural evolution tend to view resource intensification as driving the development of hierarchy, but the reverse order of causation has also been advocated, along with a range of intermediate views. Phylogenetic methods have the potential to test between these different causal models. Here we report the results of a phylogenetic study that modeled the coevolution of one type of resource intensification-the development of landesque capital intensive agriculture-with political complexity and social stratification in a sample of 155 Austronesian-speaking societies. We found support for the coevolution of landesque capital with both political complexity and social stratification, but the contingent and nondeterministic nature of both of these relationships was clear. There was no indication that intensification was the "prime mover" in either relationship. Instead, the relationship between intensification and social stratification was broadly reciprocal, whereas political complexity was more of a driver than a result of intensification. These results challenge the materialist view and emphasize the importance of both material and social factors in the evolution of complex societies, as well as the complex and multifactorial nature of cultural evolution. Copyright © 2018 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.
Pardossi, Alberto; Incrocci, Luca; Incrocci, Giorgio; Malorgio, Fernando; Battista, Piero; Bacci, Laura; Rapi, Bernardo; Marzialetti, Paolo; Hemming, Jochen; Balendonck, Jos
Crop irrigation uses more than 70% of the world’s water, and thus, improving irrigation efficiency is decisive to sustain the food demand from a fast-growing world population. This objective may be accomplished by cultivating more water-efficient crop species and/or through the application of efficient irrigation systems, which includes the implementation of a suitable method for precise scheduling. At the farm level, irrigation is generally scheduled based on the grower’s experience or on the determination of soil water balance (weather-based method). An alternative approach entails the measurement of soil water status. Expensive and sophisticated root zone sensors (RZS), such as neutron probes, are available for the use of soil and plant scientists, while cheap and practical devices are needed for irrigation management in commercial crops. The paper illustrates the main features of RZS’ (for both soil moisture and salinity) marketed for the irrigation industry and discusses how such sensors may be integrated in a wireless network for computer-controlled irrigation and used for innovative irrigation strategies, such as deficit or dual-water irrigation. The paper also consider the main results of recent or current research works conducted by the authors in Tuscany (Italy) on the irrigation management of container-grown ornamental plants, which is an important agricultural sector in Italy. PMID:22574047
Swan, Michael K.
North Dakota secondary agricultural mechanics instructors were surveyed regarding instructional methods and materials, safety practices, and equipment used in the agricultural mechanics laboratory. Usable responses were received from 69 of 89 instructors via self-administered mailed questionnaires. Findings were consistent with results of similar…
A major share of the area of hypoxic growth in the Northern Gulf of Mexico has been attributed to nutrient run-off from agricultural fields, but no estimate is available for the cost of reducing Gulf hypoxic area using agricultural conservation practices. We apply the Soil and Water Assessment Tool ...
Xu, Ligang; Xu, Jin
Protecting water resources from nitrate-nitrogen (NO3-N) contamination is an important public health concern and a major national environmental issue in China. Loss of NO3-N in soils due to leaching is not only one of the most important problems in agriculture farming, but is also the main factor causing nitrogen pollution in aquatic environments. Three typical intensive agriculture farmlands in Jiangyin City in China are selected as a case study for NO3-N leaching and modeling in the soil profile. In this study, the transport and fate of NO3-N within the soil profile and nitrate leaching to drains were analyzed by comparing field data with the simulation results of the LEACHM model. Comparisons between measured and simulated data indicated that the NO3-N concentrations in the soil and nitrate leaching to drains are controlled by the fertilizer practice, the initial conditions and the rainfall depth and distribution. Moreover, the study reveals that the LEACHM model gives a fair description of the NO3-N dynamics in the soil and subsurface drainage at the field scale. It can also be concluded that the model after calibration is a useful tool to optimize as a function of the combination “climate-crop-soil-bottom boundary condition” the nitrogen application strategy resulting for the environment in an acceptable level of nitrate leaching. The findings in this paper help to demonstrate the distribution and migration of nitrogen in intensive agriculture farmlands, as well as to explore the mechanism of groundwater contamination resulting from agricultural activities. PMID:23983629
Walker, Robert; DeFries, Ruth; del Carmen Vera-Diaz, Maria; Shimabukuro, Yosio; Venturieri, Adriano
Agriculture in Amazonia has often provoked controversy, given the tremendous ecological value of the region's environment. First with ranching, and now with the soybean boom, tractors and cattle have marched across lands that for millennia supported only closed moist forest, resident ecosystems, and dispersed indigenous peoples. The present chapter considers this expansion, focusing on the Brazilian portion of the basin. Its premise is that effective Amazonian policy must be grounded on an understanding of the region's agriculture. The chapter pursues its objectives by first addressing the development initiatives that created the preconditions for Amazonia's current agricultural economy. The region is remote and has therefore required sustained government intervention to release its potential. The policy discussion is followed by descriptions of cattle ranching and soy farming. For each, market settings and trajectories of expansion are presented. Although these sectoral descriptions are data rich, they do not provide a conceptual framework for analyzing the environmental impacts of evolving market conditions. To accomplish this, the chapter invokes the classical land use model of von Thünen to explain Amazonian land cover dynamics in relation to soy-cattle linkages. It addresses these dynamics with remote sensing data from Mato Grosso, Pará, and Rondônia, and then discusses scenarios of agricultural advances on the forest. Conclusions follow, considering possible policy responses to deforestation, and the social context of agricultural intensification, with special attention to the issues of land tenure security and distributional equity.
Anna Maria Garcia; Richard B. Alexander; Jeffrey G. Arnold; Lee Norfleet; Mike White; Dale M. Robertson; Gregory Schwarz
The Conservation Effects Assessment Program (CEAP), initiated by USDA NaturalÂ Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), has the goal of quantifying the environmentalÂ benefits of agricultural conservation practices. As part of this effort, detailed farmer surveyswere compiled to document the adoption of conservation practices. Survey data showedÂ that up to 38...
Guo, Lan-ping; Zhou, Liang-yun; Mo, Ge; Wang, Sheng; Huang, Lu-qi
Based on the ecological and economic problems in Good Agriculture Practice (GAP) of Chinese material medica, we introduced the origin, concept, features and operative technology of eco-agriculture worldwide, emphasizing its modes on different biological levels of landscape, ecosystem, community, population, individual and gene in China. And on this basis, we analyzed the background and current situation of eco-agriculture of Chinese materia medica, and proposed its development ideas and key tasks, including: (1) Analysis and planning of the production pattern of Chinese material medica national wide. (2) Typical features extraction of regional agriculture of Chinese materia medica. (3) Investigation of the interaction and its mechanism between typical Chinese materia medica in each region and the micro-ecology of rhizosphere soil. (4) Study on technology of eco-agriculture of Chinese materia medica. (5) Extraction and solidification of eco-agriculture modes of Chinese materia medica. (6) Study on the theory of eco-agriculture of Chinese materia medica. Also we pointed out that GAP and eco-agriculture of Chinese material medica are both different and relative, but they are not contradictory with their own features. It is an irresistible trend to promote eco-agriculture in the GAP of Chinese material medica and coordinate ecological and economic development.
Hao, Haiguang; Li, Xiubin; Tan, Minghong; Zhang, Jiping; Zhang, Huiyuan
Based on rural household survey data from Taibus Banner, in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, China, this study separately categorizes agricultural land use intensity into labor intensity, capital intensity, the intensity of labor-saving inputs, and the intensity of yield-increasing inputs, and then analyzes their determinants at the household level. The findings reveal that within the study area: (1) labor intensity is higher and capital intensity is lower than in the major grain-producing and economically developed areas of eastern and central China; (2) the most widely planted crops are those with the lowest labor intensity (oats) and capital intensity (benne); (3) there are marked differences in agricultural land use intensity among households; a major factor affecting land use decision-making is the reduced need for labor intensity for those households with high opportunity costs, such as those with income earned from non-farming activities which alleviates financial constraints and allows for increased capital intensity. As a result, these households invest more in labor-saving inputs; (4) households with a larger number of workers will allocate adequate time to manage their land and thus they will not necessarily invest more in labor-saving inputs. Those households with more land to manage tend to adopt an extensive cultivation strategy. Total income has a positive impact on capital intensity and a negative impact on labor intensity. Households that derive a higher proportion of their total income through farming are more reliant upon agriculture, which necessitates significant labor and yield-increasing inputs. Finally, the authors contend that policy makers should clearly recognize the impacts of non-farming employment on agricultural land use intensity. In order to ensure long-term food security and sustainable agricultural development in China, income streams from both farming and non-farming employment should be balanced.
Long, Xingle; Luo, Yusen; Wu, Chao; Zhang, Jijian
In China, agriculture produces the greatest chemical oxygen demand (COD) emissions in wastewater and the most methane (CH 4 ) emissions. It is imperative that agricultural pollution in China be reduced. This study investigated the influencing factors of the CO 2 emission intensity of Chinese agriculture from 1997 to 2014. We analyzed the influencing factors of the CO 2 emission intensity through the first-stage least-square regression. We also analyzed determinants of innovation through the second-stage least-square regression. We found that innovation negatively affected the CO 2 emission intensity in the model of the nation. FDI positively affected innovation in China. It is important to enhance indigenous innovation for green agriculture through labor training and collaboration between agriculture and academia.
Baker, A.; Finlay, J. C.; Gran, K. B.; Karwan, D. L.; Engstrom, D. R.; Atkins, W.; Muramoto-Mathieu, M.
The Minnesota River Basin is an intensively-managed agricultural watershed which contributes disproportionately to downstream sediment and nutrient loading. The Le Sueur River, an actively eroding tributary to the Minnesota River, has been identified as a disproportionate contributor of sediment and nutrients to this system. In an effort to identify best practices for reduction of phosphorus (P) in the context of intensifying agriculture and climate change pressure, we coupled investigation of source sediment P chemistry with an existing fine sediment budget to create a watershed mass balance for sediment-associated P. Sediments collected from primary source areas including agricultural fields, glacial till bluffs, alluvial streambanks, ravines, and agricultural ditches were analyzed for total- and extractable-P, and sorptive properties. Preliminary integration of these data into a mass-balance suggests that less than a quarter of the total-P exported from this watershed can be attributed directly to sediment inputs, likely due to the low P concentration of most sediment sources. While sediment may supply less than 25% of the total-P exiting the Le Sueur, a high proportion of total-P load ( 66% on average) is in particulate form. This finding indicates that sorption of dissolved-P from upstream sources onto fine sediment plays a major role in determining the form and reactivity of P in the watershed. Sorption processes convert dissolved-P into particulate-P, and may substantially alter the fate and reactivity of P in downstream channels and lakes. In highly erosive rivers, as the Le Sueur, where inputs of sediment from deep soil horizons are dominant, the dynamic relationship between sediment and dissolved-P must be evaluated and incorporated into models to forecast potential for P retention and export from the landscape. By incorporating results of this mass balance and analysis of sediment sorptive properties into existing models, we can develop strategies that
Bento, Camila Bolfarini; Filoso, Solange; Pitombo, Leonardo Machado; Cantarella, Heitor; Rossetto, Raffaella; Martinelli, Luiz Antonio; do Carmo, Janaina Braga
Sugarcane is a widespread bioenergy crop in tropical regions, and the growing global demand for renewable energy in recent years has led to a dramatic expansion and intensification of sugarcane agriculture in Brazil. Currently, extensive areas of low-intensity pasture are being converted to sugarcane, while management in the remaining pasture is becoming more intensive, i.e., includes tilling and fertilizer use. In this study, we assessed how such changes in land use and management practices alter emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) such as CO 2 , N 2 O and CH 4 by measuring in situ fluxes for one year after conversion from low-intensity pasture to conventional sugarcane agriculture and management-intensive pasture. Results show that CO 2 and N 2 O fluxes increased significantly in pasture and sugarcane with tillage, fertilizer use, or both combined. Emissions were highly variable for all GHGs, yet, cumulatively, it was clear that annual emissions in CO 2 -equivalent (CO 2 -eq) were higher in management-intense pasture and sugarcane than in unmanaged pasture. Surprisingly, tilled pasture with fertilizer (management-intensive pasture) resulted in higher CO 2 -eq emissions than conventional sugarcane. We concluded that intensification of pasture management and the conversion of pasture to sugarcane can increase the emission factor (EF) estimated for sugarcane produced in Brazil. The role of management practices and environmental conditions and the potential for reducing emissions are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Teillard, Félix; Jiguet, Frédéric; Tichit, Muriel
The shape of the relationship between biodiversity and agricultural intensity determines the range of intensities that should be targeted by conservation policies to obtain the greatest environmental benefits. Although preliminary evidence of this relationship exists, the influence of the spatial arrangement of intensity on biodiversity remains untested. We conducted a nationwide study linking agricultural intensity and its spatial arrangement to a farmland bird community of 22 species. Intensity was described with a continuous indicator based on Input Cost per hectare, which was relevant for both livestock and crop production. We used the French Breeding Bird Survey to compute several descriptors of the farmland bird community along the intensity gradient and tested for the significance of an interaction effect between intensity and its spatial aggregation on these descriptors. We found that the bird community was comprised of both winner and loser species with regard to intensity. The community composition descriptors (trophic level, specialisation, and specialisation for grassland indices) displayed non-linear relationships to intensity, with steeper slopes in the lower intensity range. We found a significant interaction effect between intensity and its spatial aggregation on the grassland specialisation index of the bird community; the effect of agricultural intensity was strengthened by its spatial aggregation. We suggest that an opportunity to improve the effectiveness of conservation policies exists by targeting measures in areas where intensity is moderate to low and aggregated. The effect of the aggregation of agricultural intensity on biodiversity should be considered in other scales and taxa when developing optimal policy targeting and intensity allocation strategies. PMID:25799552
Didion, Lisa Anne; Gesel, Samantha A.; Martinez-Lincoln, Amanda; Leonard, Kaitlin
The National Center for Leadership in Intensive Intervention (NCLII), a consortium funded by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), prepares special education leaders to become experts in research on intensive intervention for students with disabilities who have persistent and severe academic (e.g., reading and math) and behavioral…
Climate change scenarios indicate that Jordan and the Middle East could suffer from reduced agricultural productivity and water availability among other negative impacts. Based on the projection models for the area, average temperature in Jordan is projected to increase between 1.2 and 1.6 °C by 2050. Projections for precipitation trends are projected to decrease by 16% by the year 2050. Evaporation is likely to increase due to higher temperatures. This is likely to increase the incidence of drought potential since precipitation is projected to decrease. The dominant form of agriculture system in Jordan is based on intensive tillage. This form of tillage has resulted in large losses of organic soil carbon, weaker soil structure, and cause compaction. It has negative effects on soil aeration, root development and water infiltration among other factors. There is a need to transform farming practices to conservation agriculture to sequester carbon so that climate change mitigation becomes an inherent property of future farming systems. Conservation Agriculture, a system avoiding or minimizing soil disturbance, combined with soil cover and crop diversification, is considered to be a sustainable production system that can also sequester carbon unlike tillage agriculture. Conservation agriculture promotes minimal disturbance of the soil by tillage (zero tillage), balanced application of chemical inputs and careful management of residues and wastes. This study was conducted to develop a clear understanding of the impacts and benefits of the two most common types of agriculture, traditional tillage agriculture and conservation agriculture with respect to their effects on land productivity and on soil carbon pools. The study results indicated that conservation agriculture contributed to the reduction of the farming systems' greenhouse gas emissions and enhance its role as carbon sinks. Also, it was found that by shifting to conservation agriculture labor cost needed for
Mojarradi, Gholamreza; Karamidehkordi, Esmail
This paper presents an analysis of the factors influencing the practical training quality of agricultural higher education programmes from the senior students' perspective. The study was conducted in two public universities located in the north-west of Iran using a cross-sectional survey and structured interviews with a randomised sample of 254…
Shaw, Angela; Strohbehn, Catherine; Naeve, Linda; Domoto, Paul; Wilson, Lester
Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) educational courses provide produce growers with the fundamental information for producing and processing safe produce. To determine the effectiveness of the current 7-hour GAP course provided in Iowa, growers were surveyed before and 7-14 days after the course to determine changes in knowledge and opinions.…
Sheehan, Oliver; Gray, Russell D.; Atkinson, Quentin D.
One of the defining trends of the Holocene has been the emergence of complex societies. Two essential features of complex societies are intensive resource use and sociopolitical hierarchy. Although it is widely agreed that these two phenomena are associated cross-culturally and have both contributed to the rise of complex societies, the causality underlying their relationship has been the subject of longstanding debate. Materialist theories of cultural evolution tend to view resource intensification as driving the development of hierarchy, but the reverse order of causation has also been advocated, along with a range of intermediate views. Phylogenetic methods have the potential to test between these different causal models. Here we report the results of a phylogenetic study that modeled the coevolution of one type of resource intensification—the development of landesque capital intensive agriculture—with political complexity and social stratification in a sample of 155 Austronesian-speaking societies. We found support for the coevolution of landesque capital with both political complexity and social stratification, but the contingent and nondeterministic nature of both of these relationships was clear. There was no indication that intensification was the “prime mover” in either relationship. Instead, the relationship between intensification and social stratification was broadly reciprocal, whereas political complexity was more of a driver than a result of intensification. These results challenge the materialist view and emphasize the importance of both material and social factors in the evolution of complex societies, as well as the complex and multifactorial nature of cultural evolution. PMID:29555760
Faust, Derek R; Kröger, Robert; Moore, Matthew T; Rush, Scott A
Agricultural non-point sources of nutrients and sediments have caused eutrophication and other water quality issues in aquatic and marine ecosystems, such as the annual occurrence of hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. Management practices have been implemented adjacent to and in agricultural drainage ditches to promote their wetland characteristics and functions, including reduction of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment losses downstream. This review: (1) summarized studies examining changes in nutrient and total suspended solid concentrations and loads associated with management practices in drainage ditches (i.e., riser and slotted pipes, two-stage ditches, vegetated ditches, low-grade weirs, and organic carbon amendments) with emphasis on the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley, (2) quantified management system effects on nutrient and total suspended solid concentrations and loads and, (3) identified information gaps regarding water quality associated with these management practices and research needs in this area. In general, management practices used in drainage ditches at times reduced losses of total suspended solids, N, and P. However, management practices were often ineffective during storm events that were uncommon and intense in duration and volume, although these types of events could increase in frequency and intensity with climate change. Studies on combined effects of management practices on drainage ditch water quality, along with research towards improved nutrient and sediment reduction efficiency during intense storm events are urgently needed.
Aquilina, Luc; Marçais, Jean; de Dreuzy, Jean-Raynald; Labasque, Thierry; Abbott, Ben; Vergnaud, Virginie; Walter, Christian; Viville, Daniel; Chabaux, François; Pinay, Gilles
Agricultural pollution is a matter of political and scientific concern throughout the world. Intensive agriculture can cause nutrient contamination of groundwater and surface water. Nutrient pollution causes eutrophication in freshwater and estuarine ecosystems. A secondary effect of agricultural intensification is river acidification. Oxidation of chemical fertilizers such as ammonium (NH4+) to nitrate (NO3-) produces H+ ions that cause leaching of cations from soil and deeper material to maintain charge balance. Monitoring of various rivers in Brittany (western France) revealed that agriculture intensification has led to increased cation export starting in the 1980s. From the cation ratios, we deduced that cation increase comes approximately equally from dissolution of carbonate added to soil (liming practices) and silicate dissolution. Cation export represented about 30% of the soil cation exchange potential. If compensated by liming, it may constitute a non-negligible source to atmospheric CO2 (Aquilina et al., 2012). We further investigated the potential for silicate dissolution through the use of groundwater dating in various sites of Brittany. Coupling chemical analyses to groundwater ages in a large range of aquifers and a large range of depths (down to 110m) allowed us to reconstruct a chronicle for the last 50 yrs of the cation concentrations of groundwater. It clearly shows a contemporaneous increase in sodium and nitrate and a decrease in calcium, with the most dramatic changes occurring during the 70s and 80s. Using groundwater dating, we were also able to determine a silica production geochronometer. A tight and linear relationship between silica concentration and groundwater age (Figure) was observed and allowed a production rate in groundwater to be determined. Except for short residence-times (Kerrien), the silica production rate for different granitic catchments was consistent, ranging from 0.3 to 0.4 mg.L-1.yr-1. To assess the role of
Hunting, Ellard R.; Vonk, J. Arie; Musters, C. J. M.; Kraak, Michiel H. S.; Vijver, Martina G.
Agricultural practices can result in differences in organic matter (OM) and agricultural chemical inputs in adjacent ditches, but its indirect effects on OM composition and its inherent consequences for ecosystem functioning remain uncertain. This study determined the effect of agricultural practices (dairy farm grasslands and hyacinth bulb fields) on OM degradation by microorganisms and invertebrates with a consumption and food preference experiment in the field and in the laboratory using natural OM collected from the field. Freshly cut grass and hyacinths were also offered to control for OM composition and large- and small mesh-sizes were used to distinguish microbial decomposition and invertebrate consumption. Results show that OM decomposition by microorganisms and consumption by invertebrates was similar throughout the study area, but that OM collected from ditches adjacent grasslands and freshly cut grass and hyacinths were preferred over OM collected from ditches adjacent to a hyacinth bulb field. In the case of OM collected from ditches adjacent hyacinth bulb fields, both microbial decomposition and invertebrate consumption were strongly retarded, likely resulting from sorption and accumulation of pesticides. This outcome illustrates that differences in agricultural practices can, in addition to direct detrimental effects on aquatic organisms, indirectly alter the functioning of adjacent aquatic ecosystems.
Wang, Yi; Li, Yuyuan; Li, Yong; Liu, Feng; Liu, Xinliang; Gong, Dianlin; Ma, Qiumei; Li, Wei; Wu, Jinshui
High nitrogen (N) concentrations in rural domestic water supplies have been attributed to excessive agricultural N leaching into shallow groundwater systems; therefore, it is important to determine the impact of agriculture (e.g., rice production) on groundwater quality. To understand the impact of agricultural land use on the N concentrations in the shallow groundwater in subtropical central China, a large observation program was established to observe ammonium-N (NH4-N), nitrate-N (NO3-N), and total N (TN) concentrations in 161 groundwater observation wells from April 2010 to November 2012. The results indicated that the median values of NH4-N, NO3-N, and TN concentrations in the groundwater were 0.15, 0.39, and 1.38 mg N L(-1), respectively. A total of 36.3 % of the water samples were categorized as NH4-N pollution, and only a small portion of the samples were categorized as NO3-N pollution, based on the Chinese Environmental Quality Standards for Groundwater of GB/T 14848-93 (General Administration of Quality Supervision of China, 1993). These results indicated of moderate groundwater NH4-N pollution, which was mainly attributed to intensive rice agriculture with great N fertilizer application rates in the catchment. In addition, tea and vegetable fields showed higher groundwater NO3-N and TN concentrations than other agricultural land use types. The factorial correspondence analysis (FCA) suggested that the flooded agricultural land use types (e.g., single-rice and double-rice) had potential to impose NH4-N pollution, particularly in the soil exhausting season during from July to October. And, the great N fertilizer application rates could lead to a worse NO3-N and TN pollution in shallow groundwater. Hence, to protect groundwater quality and minimize NH4-N pollution, managing optimal fertilizer application and applying appropriate agricultural land use types should be implemented in the region.
Lee, B C; Westaby, J D; Chyou, P H; Purschwitz, M A
The goal of the "Safety Training for Employers and Supervisors of Adolescent Farmworkers" initiative is to improve the occupational health and safety knowledge and practices of agricultural employers and supervisors responsible for employees, ages 14 to 17 years. Surveys were sent to members of the National Council of Agricultural Employers and the Washington Growers League to measure attitudes regarding adolescent employees, current hiring and training practices, and future intentions. More than half of the respondents hire adolescents. Two-thirds were male, nearly three-quarters of the respondents had college or post-graduate degrees, and more than half were 50 years or older. The majority of respondents had positive perceptions of adolescents in terms of dependability, helpfulness, and work ethic. Among those who currently hire young workers, the most common reasons were to provide a job for children of friends and family and because they can work part-time to fill a labor demand. Among those not hiring adolescents, the most common reason was concern about child labor regulations and associated tasks (e.g., paperwork, monitoring hours). Respondents use a variety of safety training resources, especially posters and safety meetings. For the future, they expect to need more handout materials and training videos. Study results provide insights into barriers to the employment of young workers and suggest methods by which agricultural safety specialists can best assist those employers and producers who are willing to hire adolescents into agricultural work settings.
Sembiring, Sri Alem Br
This paper discusses how agricultural practices build social change in the Berastagi highlands. Agricultural products from this area are the vegetable supplier base for Medan City and other surrounding cities. The supply involves a network of trades involving many actors with many interests, as well as generating migration from other areas around and coming from different ethnicities. The migrants’ settlements are concentrated in certain areas of the region around Berastgai. This paper will illustrate the interaction between these aspects to bring about social change in Berastagi. This research uses qualitative method. Primary data were obtained through in-depth interview techniques and participant observation. Secondary data accessed from relevant agencies. This discussion shows how the pattern of social relationships changed due to changes in the goals of agricultural practices that not only oriented local markets but also exports. Competition, secrecy, and money orientation have become part of their planting activities. On the other hand, trade networks also construct them to work together in a particular context. This paper shows that agricultural activities and all things related to it reflect a broader context to see the development of small towns that also affect the development of the surrounding villages.
We study the historical origins of cross-country differences in the male-to-female sex ratio. Our analysis focuses on the use of the plough in traditional agriculture. In societies that did not use the plough, women tended to participate in agriculture as actively as men. By contrast, in societies that used the plough, men specialized in agricultural work, due to the physical strength needed to pull the plough or control the animal that pulls it. We hypothesize that this difference caused plough-using societies to value boys more than girls. Today, this belief is reflected in male-biased sex ratios, which arise due to sex-selective abortion or infanticide, or gender-differences in access to family resources, which results in higher mortality rates for girls. Testing this hypothesis, we show that descendants of societies that traditionally practiced plough agriculture today have higher average male-to-female sex ratios. We find that this effect systematically increases in magnitude and statistical significance as one looks at older cohorts. Estimates using instrumental variables confirm our findings from multivariate OLS analysis. PMID:29338023
Agricultural Education Magazine, 2002
Fourteen theme articles discuss the following: curriculum ideas and innovations in agricultural education, agricultural literacy, Supervised Agricultural Experience, active learning, locating agricultural education resources, distance and web-based instruction, principles of forest management, professional development, and service learning. (JOW)
Whittaker, Gerald; Barnhart, Bradley L; Srinivasan, Raghavan; Arnold, Jeffrey G
A major share of the area of hypoxic growth in the Northern Gulf of Mexico has been attributed to nutrient run-off from agricultural fields, but no estimate is available for the cost of reducing Gulf hypoxic area using agricultural conservation practices. We apply the Soil and Water Assessment Tool using observed daily weather to simulate the reduction in nitrogen loading in the Upper Mississippi River Basin (UMRB) that would result from enrolling all row crop acreage in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). Nitrogen loadings at the outlet of the UMRB are used to predict Gulf hypoxic area, and net cash farm rent is used as the price for participation in the CRP. Over the course of the 42 year simulation, direct CRP costs total more than $388 billion, and the Inter-Governmental Task Force goal of hypoxic area less than 5000 square kilometers is met in only two years. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Hamilton, Karin E; Umber, Jamie; Hultberg, Annalisa; Tong, Cindy; Schermann, Michele; Diez-Gonzalez, Francisco; Bender, Jeff B
The United States Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Agriculture jointly published the "Guide to Minimize Microbial Food Safety Hazards for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables," which is used as a basis for Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) audits. To understand barriers to incorporation of GAP by Minnesota vegetable farmers, a mail survey completed in 2008 was validated with visits to a subset of the farms. This was done to determine the extent to which actual practices matched perceived practices. Two hundred forty-six producers completed the mail survey, and 27 participated in the on-farm survey. Over 75% of the on-farm survey respondents produced vegetables on 10 acres or less and had 10 or fewer employees. Of 14 questions, excellent agreement between on-farm interviews and mail survey responses was observed on two questions, four questions had poor or slight agreement, and eight questions had no agreement. Ninety-two percent of respondents by mail said "they took measures to keep animals and pests out of packing and storage buildings." However, with the on-site visit only 45% met this requirement. Similarly, 81% of respondents by mail said "measures were taken to reduce the risk of wild and/or domestic animals entering into fruit and vegetable growing areas." With direct observation, 70% of farms actually had taken measures to keep animals out of the growing areas. Additional, on-farm assessments were done regarding employee hygiene, training, presence of animals, water sources, and composting practices. This validation study demonstrated the challenge of creating nonleading and concise questions that are not open to broad interpretation from the respondents. If mail surveys are used to assess GAP, they should include open-ended questions and ranking systems to better assess farm practices. To provide the most accurate survey data for educational purposes or GAP audits, on-farm visits are recommended.
García-Orenes, Fuensanta; Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; McMillan, Mary; Pereg, Lily
Agricultural land management has great influences on soil properties, in particular on microbial communities, due to their sensitivity to the perturbations of the soils. This is even more relevant in Mediterranean agricultural areas under semi-arid conditions. The Mediterranean belt is suffering from an intense degradation of its soils due to the millennia of intense land use and due to unsustainable management practices. As a consequence this area is suffering from a depletion of N content. In this work we investigated the effect of several traditional agricultural management practices on specific functional groups related to the nitrogen cycle in the soil. A field experiment was performed with orchard orange trees (citrus sinesis) in Eastern Spain to assess the long-term effects of ploughing with inorganic fertilization (PI) and ecological practices (EP) (chipped pruned branches and weeds as well as manure from sheep and goats) on microbes that can undertake nitrogen fixation and denitrification. Nine samples of soil were taken from every treatment, near the drip irrigation point and in a zone without the influence of drip irrigation (between trees row), and total DNA extracted. DNA samples were stored at minus-20°C to be analysed by qPCR. Microbial populations involved in the N biochemical cycle were analysed by targeted amplification of key functional biomarker genes: the abundance of nifH (nitrogen fixation), nirS, nirK and nosZ (denitrification) detected by quantitative PCR (qPCR) has shown significant differences between treatments with higher abundance of all four genes in soils from ecological agricultural treatments. This may indicate that the ecological treatment created conditions that are more suitable for N cyclers in the soil and a better fertility and quality status of these soils.
Lesschen, J. P.; Kuikman, P. J.; Smith, P.; Schils, R. L.; Oudendag, D.
Agriculture has a significant impact on climate, with a commonly estimated contribution of 9% of total greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions. Besides, agriculture is the main source of nitrous oxide and methane emissions to the atmosphere. On the other hand, there is a large potential for climate change mitigation in agriculture through carbon sequestration into soils. Within the framework of the PICCMAT project (Policy Incentives for Climate Change Mitigation Agricultural Techniques) we quantified the mitigation potential of 11 agricultural practices at regional level for the EU. The focus was on smaller-scale measures towards optimised land management that can be widely applied at individual farm level and which can have a positive climate change mitigating effect and be beneficial to soil conditions, e.g. cover crops and reduced tillage. The mitigation potentials were assessed with the MITERRA-Europe model, a deterministic and static N cycling model which calculates N emissions on an annual basis, using N emission factors and N leaching fractions. For the PICCMAT project the model was extended with a soil carbon module, to assess changes in soil organic carbon according to the IPCC Tier1 approach. The amount of soil organic carbon (SOC) is calculated by multiplying the soil reference carbon content, which depends on soil type and climate, by coefficients for land use, land management and input of organic matter. By adapting these coefficients changes in SOC as result of the measures were simulated. We considered both the extent of agricultural area across Europe on which a measure could realistically be applied (potential level of implementation), and the current level of implementation that has already been achieved . The results showed that zero tillage has the highest mitigation potential, followed by adding legumes, reduced tillage, residue management, rotation species, and catch crops. Optimising fertiliser application and fertiliser type are the measures with
O'Keeffe, J.; Buytaert, W.; Brozovic, N.; Mijic, A.
Changes in farming practices within Uttar Pradesh, particularly advances in irrigation technology, have led to a significant drop in water tables across the region. While the acquisition of monitoring data in India is a challenge, current water use practices point towards water overdraught. This is exacerbated by government and state policies and practices, including the subsidising of electricity, seeds and fertilizer, and an agreement to buy all crops grown, promoting the over use of water resources. Taking India's predicted population growth, increases in industrialisation and climate change into account, both farmland and the water resources it depends upon will be subject to increased pressures in the future. This research is centred around irrigation demands on water resources within Uttar Pradesh, and in particular, quantifying those demands both spatially and temporally. Two aspects of this will be presented; the quantification of irrigation water applied and the characterisation of the spatial heterogeneity of water use practices. Calculating the volumes of applied irrigation water in the absence of observed data presents a major challenge and is achieved here through the use of crop models. Regional crop yields provided by statistical yearbooks are replicated by the crop models AquaCrop and InfoCrop, and by doing so the amount of irrigation water needed to produce the published yields is quantified. In addition, proxy information, for example electrical consumption for agricultural use, is used to verify the likely volumes of water abstracted from tubewells. Statistical analyses of borehole distribution and the characterisation of the spatial heterogeneity of water use practices, particularly farmer decision making, collected during a field trip are also presented. The evolution of agricultural practices, technological advancement and water use for irrigation is reconstructed through the use of multiple regression and principle component analysis
Minton, Claire; Batten, Lesley
With consideration of an environmental concept, this paper explores evidence related to the negative impacts of the intensive care unit environment on patient outcomes and explores the potential counteracting benefits of 'nature-based' nursing interventions as a way to improve care outcomes. The impact of the environment in which a patient is nursed has long been recognised as one determinant in patient outcomes. Whilst the contemporary intensive care unit environment contains many features that support the provision of the intensive therapies the patient requires, it can also be detrimental, especially for long-stay patients. This narrative review considers theoretical and evidence-based literature that supports the adoption of nature-based nursing interventions in intensive care units. Research and theoretical literature from a diverse range of disciplines including nursing, medicine, psychology, architecture and environmental science were considered in relation to patient outcomes and intensive care nursing practice. There are many nature-based interventions that intensive care unit nurses can implement into their nursing practice to counteract environmental stressors. These interventions can also improve the environment for patients' families and nurses. Intensive care unit nurses must actively consider and manage the environment in which nursing occurs to facilitate the best patient outcomes. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Le Blanc, Pascale M; Schaufeli, Wilmar B; Salanova, Marisa; Llorens, Susana; Nap, Raoul E
This paper is a report of an investigation of whether intensive care nurses' efficacy beliefs predict future collaborative practice, and to test the potential mediating role of team commitment in this relationship. Recent empirical studies in the field of work and organizational psychology have demonstrated that (professional) efficacy beliefs are reciprocally related to workers' resources and well-being over time, resulting in a positive gain spiral. Moreover, there is ample evidence that workers' affective commitment to their organization or work-team is related to desirable work behaviours such as citizenship behaviour. A longitudinal design was applied to questionnaire data from the EURICUS-project. Structural Equation Modelling was used to analyse the data. The sample consisted of 372 nurses working in 29 different European intensive care units. Data were collected in 1997 and 1998. However, our research model deals with fundamental psychosocial processes that are not time-dependent. Moreover, recent empirical literature shows that there is still room for improvement in ICU collaborative practice. The hypotheses that (i) the relationship between efficacy beliefs and collaborative practice is mediated by team commitment and (ii) efficacy beliefs, team commitment and collaborative practice are reciprocally related were supported, suggesting a potential positive gain spiral of efficacy beliefs. Healthcare organizations should create working environments that provide intensive care unit nurses with sufficient resources to perform their job well. Further research is needed to design and evaluate interventions for the enhancement of collaborative practice in intensive care units.
Sellin Jeffries, Marlo K.; Conoan, Nicholas H.; Cox, Marc B.; Sangster, Jodi L.; Balsiger, Heather A.; Bridges, Andrew A.; Cowman, Tim; Knight, Lindsey A.; Bartelt-Hunt, Shannon L.; Kolok, Alan S.
The goal of the current study was to determine whether sediments from agriculturally-intense watersheds can act as a potential source of anti-estrogenic endocrine-disrupting compounds. The specific objectives of the current study were to determine 1) whether female fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) experience alterations in endocrine function when exposed to sediments collected from agriculturally-intense watersheds and 2) if these sediments display anti-estrogenic activity in an in vitro assay. In addition, sediment samples were analyzed for the presence of steroid hormones and pesticides associated with local agricultural practices. To accomplish this, sediments and water were collected from three sites within two agriculturally-intense Nebraska watersheds (Bow Creek and the Elkhorn River). In 2009, minnows were exposed to sediment and/or water collected from the two Bow Creek sites (East Bow Creek and the Confluence) in the laboratory, while in 2010, minnows were exposed to sediment and/or water from East Bow Creek, the Confluence and the Elkhorn River. Following the 7-d exposure period, the hepatic mRNA expression of two-estrogen responsive genes, estrogen receptor α (ERα) and vitellogenin (Vtg) was determined. In 2009, females exposed to Confluence sediments, in the presence of laboratory water or Confluence water, experienced significant reductions in ERα expression relative to unexposed and Confluence water-exposed females. The defeminization of these females suggests the presence of a biologically-available anti-estrogenic compound in sediments collected from this site. In 2010, sediments were assessed for anti-estrogenic activity on days 0 and 7 of the exposure period using a four-hour yeast estrogen screen. Lipophilic extracts (LEs) of day 0 sediments collected from the Confluence and the Elkhorn River induced significant reductions in the estrogenic reporter activity of treated yeast cultures suggesting the presence of a lipophilic anti
Lasier, Peter J.; Urich, Matthew L.; Hassan, Sayed M.; Jacobs, Whitney N.; Bringolf, Robert B.; Owens, Kathleen M.
Agricultural practices pose threats to biotic diversity in freshwater systems with increasing use of glyphosate-based herbicides for weed control and animal waste for soil amendment becoming common in many regions. Over the past two decades, these particular agricultural trends have corresponded with marked declines in populations of fish and mussel species in the Upper Conasauga River watershed in Georgia/Tennessee, USA. To investigate the potential role of agriculture in the population declines, surface waters and sediments throughout the basin were tested for toxicity and analyzed for glyphosate, metals, nutrients, and steroid hormones. Assessments of chronic toxicity with Ceriodaphnia dubia and Hyalella azteca indicated that few water or sediment samples were harmful and metal concentrations were generally below impairment levels. Glyphosate was not observed in surface waters, although its primary degradation product, aminomethyl phosphonic acid (AMPA), was detected in 77% of the samples (mean = 509 μg/L, n = 99) and one or both compounds were measured in most sediment samples. Waterborne AMPA concentrations supported an inference that surfactants associated with glyphosate may be present at levels sufficient to affect early life stages of mussels. Nutrient enrichment of surface waters was widespread with nitrate (mean = 0.7 mg NO3-N/L, n = 179) and phosphorus (mean = 275 μg/L, n = 179) exceeding levels associated with eutrophication. Hormone concentrations in sediments were often above those shown to cause endocrine disruption in fish and appear to reflect the widespread application of poultry litter and manure. Observed species declines may be at least partially due to hormones, although excess nutrients and herbicide surfactants may also be implicated.
Bhadha, J. H.; Lang, T. A.; Daroub, S. H.; Alvarez, O.; Tootoonchi, M.; Capasso, J.
In the 450,000 acres of the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) of South Florida, farming practices have long been mindful of phosphorus (P) management as it relates to sufficiency and efficiency of P utilization. Over two decades of P best management practices have resulted in 3001 metric-ton of P load reduction from the EAA to downstream ecosystems. During the summer, more than 50,000 acres of fallow sugarcane land is available for rice production. The net value of growing flooded rice in the EAA as a rotational crop with sugarcane far exceeds its monetary return. Soil conservation, improvement in tilth and P load reduction are only some of the benefits. With no P fertilizer applied, a two-year field trial on flooded rice showed improved outflow P concentrations by up to 40% as a result of particulate setting and plant P uptake. Harvested whole grain rice can effectively remove a significant amount of P from a rice field per growing season. In parts of the EAA where soils are sandy, the application of using locally derived organic amendments as potential P fertilizer has gained interest over the past few years. The use of local agricultural and urban organic residues as amendments in sandy soils of South Florida provide options to enhance soil properties and improve sugarcane yields, while reducing waste and harmful effects of agricultural production on the environment. A lysimeter study conducted to determine the effect of mill ash and three types of biochar (rice hulls, yard waste, horse bedding) on sugarcane yields, soil properties, and drainage water quality in sandy soils showed that mill ash and rice hull biochar increased soil TP, Mehlich 3-P (M3-P), and cation exchange capacity (CEC) compared to the control. TP and M3-P content remained constant after 9 months, CEC showed a significant increase over time with rich hull biochar addition. Future projects include the utilization of aquatic vegetation, such as chara and southern naiad as bio-filters in farm
Chome, G.; Baret, P. V.; Defourny, P.
The environmental impact of the so-called conventional farming system calls for new farming practices reducing negative externalities. Emerging farming practices such as no-till and new inter-cropping management are promising tracks. The development of methods to characterize crop management across an entire region and to understand their spatial dimension offers opportunities to accompany the transition towards a more sustainable agriculture.This research takes advantage of the unmatched polarimetric and temporal resolutions of Sentinel-1 SAR C- band to develop a method to identify farming practices at the parcel level. To this end, the detection of changes in backscattering due to surface roughness modification (tillage, inter-crop cover destruction ...) is used to detect the farming management. The final results are compared to a reference dataset collected through an intensive field campaign. Finally, the performances are discussed in the perspective of practices monitoring of cropping systems through remote sensing.
Favre-Bac, L; Mony, C; Ernoult, A; Burel, F; Arnaud, J-F
In intensive agricultural landscapes, plant species previously relying on semi-natural habitats may persist as metapopulations within landscape linear elements. Maintenance of populations' connectivity through pollen and seed dispersal is a key factor in species persistence in the face of substantial habitat loss. The goals of this study were to investigate the potential corridor role of ditches and to identify the landscape components that significantly impact patterns of gene flow among remnant populations. Using microsatellite loci, we explored the spatial genetic structure of two hydrochorous wetland plants exhibiting contrasting local abundance and different habitat requirements: the rare and regionally protected Oenanthe aquatica and the more commonly distributed Lycopus europaeus, in an 83 km2 agricultural lowland located in northern France. Both species exhibited a significant spatial genetic structure, along with substantial levels of genetic differentiation, especially for L. europaeus, which also expressed high levels of inbreeding. Isolation-by-distance analysis revealed enhanced gene flow along ditches, indicating their key role in effective seed and pollen dispersal. Our data also suggested that the configuration of the ditch network and the landscape elements significantly affected population genetic structure, with (i) species-specific scale effects on the genetic neighborhood and (ii) detrimental impact of human ditch management on genetic diversity, especially for O. aquatica. Altogether, these findings highlighted the key role of ditches in the maintenance of plant biodiversity in intensive agricultural landscapes with few remnant wetland habitats. PMID:26486611
He, Chun-E; Wang, Xin; Liu, Xuejun; Fangmeier, Andreas; Christie, Peter; Zhang, Fusuo
Interest in nitrogen inputs via atmospheric deposition to agricultural ecosystems has increased recently, especially on the North China Plain because of extremely intensive agricultural systems and rapid urbanization in this region. Nitrogen deposition may make a significant contribution to crop N requirements but may also impose a considerable nutrient burden on the environment in general. We quantified total N deposition at two locations, Dongbeiwang near Beijing and Quzhou in Hebei province, over a two-year period from 2005 to 2007 using an 15N tracer method, the integrated total N input (ITNI) system. Total airborne N inputs to a maize wheat rotation system at both locations ranged from 99 to 117 kg N x ha(-1) x yr(-1), with higher N deposition during the maize season (57-66 kg N/ha) than the wheat season (42-51 kg N/ha). Plant available N from deposition for maize and wheat was about 52 kg N x ha(-1) x yr(-1), accounting for 50% of the total N deposition or 31% of total N uptake by the two crop species. In addition, a correction factor was derived for the maize season to adjust values obtained from small pots (0.057 m2) compared with field trays (0.98 m2) because of higher plant density in the pots. The results indicate that atmospheric N deposition is a very important N input and must be taken into account when calculating nutrient budgets in very intensively managed agricultural ecosystems.
Reed, Jennifer L; Pipe, Andrew L
Regular physical activity helps to prevent heart disease, and reduces the risk of first or subsequent cardiovascular events. It is recommended that Canadian adults accumulate at least 150 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise per week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more, and perform muscle- and bone-strengthening activities at least 2 days per week. Individual exercise prescriptions can be developed using the frequency, intensity, time, and type principles. Increasing evidence suggests that high-intensity interval training is efficacious for a broad spectrum of heart health outcomes. Several practical approaches to prescribing and monitoring exercise intensity exist including: heart rate monitoring, the Borg rating of perceived exertion scale, the Talk Test, and, motion sensors. The Borg rating of perceived exertion scale matches a numerical value to an individual's perception of effort, and can also be used to estimate heart rate. The Talk Test, the level at which simple conversation is possible, can be used to monitor desired levels of moderate- to vigorous-intensity exercise. Motion sensors can provide users with practical and useful exercise training information to aid in meeting current exercise recommendations. These approaches can be used by the public, exercise scientists, and clinicians to easily and effectively guide physical activity in a variety of settings. Copyright © 2016 Canadian Cardiovascular Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Wolińska, Agnieszka; Górniak, Dorota; Zielenkiewicz, Urszula; Goryluk-Salmonowicz, Agata; Kuźniar, Agnieszka; Stępniewska, Zofia; Błaszczyk, Mieczysław
The aim of the study was to examine the differences in microbial community structure as a result of agricultural practices. Sixteen samples of cultivated and the same number of non-cultivated soils were selected. Gel bands were identified using the GelCompar software to create the presence-absence matrix, where each band represented a bacterial operational taxonomic unit. The data were used for principal-component analysis and additionally, the Shannon- Weaver index of general diversity, Simpson index of dominance and Simpson index of diversity were calculated. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis profiles clearly indicated differentiation of tested samples into two clusters: cultivated and non-cultivated soils. Greater numbers of dominant operational taxonomic units (65) in non-cultivated soils were noted compared to cultivated soils (47 operational taxonomic units). This implies that there was a reduction of dominant bacterial operational taxonomic units by nearly 30% in cultivated soils. Simpson dominance index expressing the number of species weighted by their abundance amounted to 1.22 in cultivated soils, whereas a 3-fold higher value (3.38) was observed in non-cultivated soils. Land-use practices seemed to be a important factors affected on biodiversity, because more than soil type determined the clustering into groups.
Druyan, Leonard M.; Shah, Kathryn P.; Chandler, Mark A.; Rind, David
The ability to forecast seasonal climate is of great practical interest. One of the most obvious benefits would be agriculture, for which various preparations (planting, machinery, irrigation, manpower) would be enabled. The expectation of being able to make such forecasts far enough in advance (on the order of 9 months) hinges on components of the system with the longest persistence or predictability. The mixed results of El Nino forecasts has raised the hope that tropical Pacific sea surface temperatures (SST) fall into this category. For agriculturally-relevant forecasts to be made, and utilized, requires several conditions. The SST in the regions that affect agricultural areas must be forecast successfully, many months in advance. The climate response to such sea surface temperatures must then be ascertained, either through the use of historical empirical studies or models (e.g., GCMS). For practical applications, the agricultural production must be strongly influenced by climate, and farmers on either the local level or through commercial concerns must be able to adjust to using such forecasts. In a continuing series of papers, we will explore each of these components. This article concerns the question of utilizing SST to forecast the climate in several regions of agricultural production. We optimize the possibility of doing so successfully by using observed SST in a hindcast mode (i.e., a perfect forecast), and we also use the globally observed values (rather than just those from the tropical Pacific, for which predictability has been shown). This then is the ideal situation; in subsequent papers we will explore degrading the results by using only tropical Pacific SSTs, and then using only
February). Are nursing outcome databases sensitive to outcome changes overtime ?, Southern Nursing Research Society 26th Annual Conference, New...FINAL 3. DATES COVERED (From - To) 1 SEP 2010- 31 AUG 2014 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Workload Intensity, the Nursing Practice Environment, and...10. SPONSOR/MONITOR’S ACRONYM(S) TriService Nursing Research TSNRP Program, 4301 Jones Bridge RD Bethesda, MD 20814 11. SPONSOR/MONITOR’S
Lantz, Björn; Ottosson, Cornelia
This article explores the differences and similarities in opinions of neonatal intensive care issues between parents, neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) healthcare professionals (nurses and physicians), and managers (neonatal unit managers and pediatric division managers). An exploratory survey (n = 624) was conducted in Sweden during 2012-2013 on the basis of a validated questionnaire composed of 92 neonatal care-related Likert items. A total of 141 parents, 443 professionals, and 40 managers completed the survey. The parents were recruited consecutively from 5 NICUs of the Västra Götaland region in Sweden and the professionals and managers from all 40 NICUs in Sweden. Data were analyzed with analysis of variances, and post hoc analyses were conducted through pairwise t tests with Bonferroni corrections. Professionals and managers differed significantly on 1 item. Parents, however, found 54 items significantly less important than professionals did, but found only 4 to be significantly more important than professionals did. In line with previous research, we found that a gap exists between views of neonatal intensive care practices, with parents on one side and professionals and managers on the other. The nature of this gap, however, differs substantially from previous research, where parents found many items to be more important than professionals did. To develop and improve neonatal intensive care, this gap must be acknowledged and addressed, both in research and in practice. NICU managers need to develop strategies and routines that allow professionals to understand and adjust to the specific priorities of individual parents and families.
Reimer, Adam P.; Weinkauf, Denise Klotthor; Prokopy, Linda Stalker
Agricultural best management practices (BMPs), or conservation practices, can help reduce nonpoint source pollution from agricultural lands, as well as provide valuable wildlife habitat. There is a large literature exploring factors that lead to a producer's voluntary adoption of BMPs, but there have been inconsistent findings. Generally, this…
Driese, K. L.; Sivanpillai, R.
Ever increasing demand for food and fiber calls for farm management strategies such as effective use of chemicals and efficient water use that will maximize productivity while reducing adverse impacts on the environment. Remotely sensed data collected by satellites are a valuable resource for farmers and ranchers for gaining insights about farm and ranch productivity. While researchers in universities and agencies have made tremendous advances, technology transfer to end-users has lagged, preventing the farmers from taking advantage of this valuable resource. To overcome this barrier, the Upper Midwest Aerospace Consortium (UMAC), a NASA funded program headed by the University of North Dakota, has been working with end-users to promote the use of remote sensing technology for sustainable agricultural practices. We will highlight the UMAC activities in Wyoming aimed at promoting this technology to sugar-beet farmers in the Big Horn Basin. To assist farmers who might not have a computer at home, we provide them to local county Cooperative Extension Offices pre-loaded with relevant imagery. Our targeted outreach activities have resulted in farmers requesting and using new and old Landsat images to identify growth anomalies and trends which have enabled them to develop management zones within their croplands.
Threeton, Mark D.; Ewing, John C.
Providing training of safe operations and behaviors in Agricultural Mechanics classrooms and laboratories is an important aspect of the agricultural education teaching and learning environment. The purpose of this survey research study was to examine current occupational safety and health practices within agricultural mechanics programs. The…
Cockburn, Myles; Mills, Paul; Zhang, Xinbo; Zadnick, John; Goldberg, Dan; Ritz, Beate
In a population-based case-control study in California's intensely agricultural Central Valley (2005–2006), the authors investigated relations between environmental pesticide/fungicide exposure and prostate cancer. Cases (n = 173) were obtained from a population-based cancer registry, and controls (n = 162) were obtained from Medicare listings and tax assessor mailings. Past ambient exposures to pesticides/fungicides were derived from residential history and independently recorded pesticide and land-use data, using a novel geographic information systems approach. In comparison with unexposed persons, increased risks of prostate cancer were observed among persons exposed to compounds which may have prostate-specific biologic effects (methyl bromide (odds ratio = 1.62, 95% confidence interval: 1.02, 2.59) and a group of organochlorines (odds ratio = 1.64, 95% confidence interval: 1.02, 2.63)) but not among those exposed to other compounds that were included as controls (simazine, maneb, and paraquat dichloride). The authors assessed the possibility of selection bias due to less-than-100% enrollment of eligible cases and controls (a critical methodological concern in studies of this kind) and determined that there was little evidence of bias affecting the estimated effect size. This study provides evidence of an association between prostate cancer and ambient pesticide exposures in and around homes in intensely agricultural areas. The associations appear specific to compounds with a plausible biologic role in prostate carcinogenesis. PMID:21447478
Matos Moreira, Mariana; Lemercier, Blandine; Michot, Didier; Dupas, Rémi; Gascuel-Odoux, Chantal
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
Greenberg, Rachel G; Smith, P Brian; Bose, Carl; Clark, Reese H; Cotten, C Michael; DeRienzo, Chris
We conducted a detailed survey to identify medication safety practices among a large network of United States neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). We created a 53-question survey to assess 300 U.S. NICU's demographics, medication safety practices, adverse drug event (ADE) reporting, and ADE response plans. Among the 164 (55%) NICUs that responded to the survey, more than 85% adhered to practices including use of electronic health records, computerized physician order entry, and clinical decision support; fewer reported adopting barcoding, formal safety surveys, and formal culture training; 137 of 164 (84%) developed at least one NICU-specific order-set with a median of 10 order-sets. Among our survey of 164 NICUs, we found that many safety practices remain unused. Understanding safety practice variation is critical to prevent ADEs and other negative infant outcomes. Future efforts should focus on linking safety practices identified from our survey with ADEs and infant outcomes. Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.
Jardé, E.; Gruau, G.
This study presents the potentiality of organic markers to trace the impact of animal manure in soils and rivers draining agricultural watersheds. As described by Gruau et al. (in this session), the analysis of long term records of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in five watersheds in Brittany (western of France) shows divergent trends which can not be explained solely by global changes. One alternative explanation could be that long- term records of DOM in rivers are controlled by human activities, and notably by agricultural practices. In Brittany, the agricultural intensification led to an over-application of animal manures to soils. This practice can strongly increase the amount of soil-water extractable organic matter, thereby leading to an increase of organic matter fluxes in agricultural landscapes and then to a contamination of river waters. Such an hypothesis deserves consideration in view of the massive manure fluxes that are disposed on agricultural land in many parts of the world. In this goal, our study aimed at determining potential sources of organic matter and molecular markers or specific distributions in rivers draining agricultural watersheds. In this study we focused on the analysis of pig slurries because of the importance of pig production in Brittany. The analysis of pig slurry evidenced the presence of coprostanol (5β) as a specific marker, originating from the bio- hydrogenation of cholesterol by anaerobic bacteria. The difference with other animal or human wastes has been evidenced by two ratios: 5β/C27 and C29/C27. After the validation of the ability of coprostanol to be a molecular marker of pig slurry, our analysis has been focused on the OM of watersheds in Brittany showing divergent evolutions. The results show a systematic relation between the C29/C27 and 5β/C27 ratios and the type of animal breeding in each watershed. This study allows us to evidence the impact of animal breeding activities in the analysed rivers. Such a study
Dawidowski, L. E.
Agriculture is a key sector of the Argentinean economy, accounting for 6 to 8 5% of the GDP in the last ten years. Argentina switched in the 90´s from an articulated co-evolution between extensive livestock and crop farming, with annual rotation of crops and livestock, to intensive decoupled practices. Under these new production schemes, ecosystems were supplied with more nutrients, generating increasing levels of wastes. Other changes have also occurred, associated with the shift of the agricultural frontier and the consequent reduction in the cattle stock. In addition, changes related to climate through the strong increase in rainfall in the 80s and 90s in the west Pampas, helped to boost agricultural development. The agriculture sector accounts for practically all NH3 emissions in Argentina, however no inventory has been thus far available. To bridge this gap and particularly to have accurate input information to run coupled atmospheric chemistry models for secondary inorganic aerosols, we estimated 2000-2012 NH3 emissions, both at national and spatially disaggregated levels. Of particular interest for us was also temporal disaggregation as crops growing and temperature exhibit strong seasonal variability. As no NH3 inventory was available we also estimated related N2O emissions to verify our estimates with those of national GHG emission inventory (NEI). National NH3 emissions in 2012 amounted to 309.9 Gg, use of fertilizers accounted for 43.6%, manure management 18,9%, manure in pasture 36,0% and agricultural waste burning 1.5%. Our N2O estimates are in good agreement with the GHG-NEI. NH3 estimates in the EDGAR database for 2008 are 84.0% higher than ours for this year, and exhibit more significant differences per category, namely 113,6% higher for use of fertilizers and about 500% higher for agricultural waste burning. Urea dominates national NH3 emissions, accounting for 32,8% of the total and its use for wheat and corn crops dominates the trend.
Kühling, Insa; Broll, Gabriele; Trautz, Dieter
The Western Siberian grain belt covers 1millionkm² in Asiatic Russia and is of global importance for agriculture. Massive land-use changes took place in that region after the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the collapse of the state farm system. Decreasing land-use intensity (LUI) in post-Soviet Western Siberia was observed on grassland due to declining livestock whilst on cropland trends of land abandonment reversed in the early 2000s. Recultivation of abandoned cropland as well as increasing fertilizer inputs and narrowing crop rotations led to increasing LUI on cropland during the last two decades. Beyond that general trend, no information is available about spatial distribution and magnitude but a crucial precondition for the development of strategies for sustainable land management. To quantify changes and patterns in LUI, we developed an intensity index that reflects the impacts of land-based agricultural production. Based on subnational yearly statistical data, we calculated two separate input-orientated indices for cropland and grassland, respectively. The indices were applied on two spatial scale: at seven provinces covering the Western Siberian grain belt (Altay Kray, Chelyabinsk, Kurgan, Novosibirsk, Omsk, Sverdlovsk and Tyumen) and at all districts of the central province Tyumen. The spatio-temporal analysis clearly showed opposite trends for the two land-use types: decreasing intensity on grassland (-0.015 LUI units per year) and intensification on cropland (+0.014 LUI units per year). Furthermore, a spatial concentration towards intensity centres occurred during transition from a planned to a market economy. A principal component analysis enabled the individual calculations of both land-use types to be combined and revealed a strong link between biophysical conditions and LUI. The findings clearly showed the need for having a different strategy for future sustainable land management for grassland (predominantly used by livestock of households
Richardson, M.; Kumar, P.
The critical zone (CZ) includes the biophysical processes occurring from the top of the vegetation canopy to the weathering zone below the groundwater table. CZ services provide a measure for the goods and benefits derived from CZ processes. In intensively managed landscapes (IML), the provisioning, supporting, and regulating services are altered through anthropogenic energy inputs to derive more productivity, as agricultural products, from these landscapes than would be possible under natural conditions. However, the energy or cost equivalents of alterations to CZ functions within landscape profiles are unknown. The valuation of CZ services in energy or monetary terms provides a more concrete tool for characterizing seemingly abstract environmental damages from agricultural production systems. A multi-layer canopy-root-soil model is combined with nutrient and water flux models to simulate the movement of nutrients throughout the soil system. This data enables the measurement of agricultural anthropogenic impacts to the CZ's nutrient cycling supporting services and atmospheric stabilizing regulating services defined by the flux of carbon and nutrients. Such measurements include soil carbon storage, soil carbon respiration, nitrate leaching, and nitrous oxide flux into the atmosphere. Additionally, the socioeconomic values of corn feed and ethanol define the primary productivity supporting services of each crop use.In the debate between feed production and corn-based ethanol production, measured nutrient CZ services can cost up to four times more than traditionally estimated CO2 equivalences for the entire bioenergy production system. Energy efficiency in addition to environmental impacts demonstrate how the inclusion of CZ services is necessary in accounting for the entire life cycle of agricultural production systems. These results conclude that feed production systems are more energy efficient and less environmentally costly than corn-based ethanol systems.
Anderson, William A.
Sustainable agriculture implies the use of products and practices that sustain production, protect the environment, ensure economic viability, and maintain rural community viability. Disagreement exists as to whether or not the products and practices of modern biotechnological support agricultural sustainability. The purpose of this study was to…
A habitat-change model was used to compare past, present, and future land cover and management practices to assess potential impacts of alternative agricultural practices on wildlife in two agricultural watersheds, Walnut Creek and Buck Creek, in central Iowa, USA. This approach ...
Rose, Miranda L; Cherney, Leora R; Worrall, Linda E
In response to the need to simultaneously address multiple domains of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) in aphasia therapy and to incorporate intensive treatment doses consistent with principles of neuroplasticity, a potentially potent treatment option termed intensive comprehensive aphasia programs (ICAPs) has been developed. To conduct an international survey of ICAPs to determine the extent of their use and to explore current ICAP practices. A 32-item online survey was distributed internationally through Survey Monkey between May and August 2012. The survey addressed ICAP staffing, philosophy, values, funding, admission criteria, activities, family involvement, outcome measures, and factors considered important to success. Twelve ICAPs responded: 8 from the United States, 2 from Canada, and 1 each from Australia and the United Kingdom. The majority of ICAPs are affiliated with university programs and are funded through participant self-pay. ICAPs emphasize individualized treatment goals and evidence-based practices, with a focus on applying the principles of neuroplasticity related to repetition and intensity of treatment. On average, 6 people with aphasia attend each ICAP, for 4 days per week for 4 weeks, receiving about 100 hours of individual, group, and computer-based treatment. Speech-language pathologists, students, and volunteers staff the majority of ICAPs. ICAPs are increasing in number but remain a rare service delivery option. They address the needs of individuals who want access to intensive treatment and are interested in making significant changes to their communication skills and psychosocial well-being in a short period of time. Their efficacy and cost-effectiveness require future investigation.
The EPA Agriculture Resource Directory offers comprehensive, easy-to-understand information about environmental stewardship on farms and ranches; commonsense, flexible approaches that are both environmentally protective and agriculturally sound.
García-Orenes, Fuensanta; Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; Zornoza, Raul; Cerdà, Artemi; Scow, Kate
Agricultural practices have proven to be unsuitable in many cases, causing considerable reductions in soil quality. Land management practices can provide solutions to this problem and contribute to get a sustainable agriculture model. The main objective of this work was to assess the effect of different agricultural management practices on soil microbial community structure (evaluated as abundance of phospholipid fatty acids, PLFA). Five different treatments were selected, based on the most common practices used by farmers in the study area (eastern Spain): residual herbicides, tillage, tillage with oats and oats straw mulching; these agricultural practices were evaluated against an abandoned land after farming and an adjacent long term wild forest coverage. The results showed a substantial level of differentiation in the microbial community structure, in terms of management practices, which was highly associated with soil organic matter content. Addition of oats straw led to a microbial community structure closer to wild forest coverage soil, associated with increases in organic carbon, microbial biomass and fungal abundances. The microbial community composition of the abandoned agricultural soil was characterised by increases in both fungal abundances and the metabolic quotient (soil respiration per unit of microbial biomass), suggesting an increase in the stability of organic carbon. The ratio of bacteria:fungi was higher in wild forest coverage and land abandoned systems, as well as in the soil treated with oat straw. The most intensively managed soils showed higher abundances of bacteria and actinobacteria. Thus, the application of organic matter, such as oats straw, appears to be a sustainable management practice that enhances organic carbon, microbial biomass and activity and fungal abundances, thereby changing the microbial community structure to one more similar to those observed in soils under wild forest coverage.
Lizotte, Richard E; Yasarer, Lindsey M W; Locke, Martin A; Bingner, Ronald L; Knight, Scott S
Watershed-scale management efforts to reduce nutrient loads and improve the conservation of lakes in agricultural watersheds require effective integration of a variety of agricultural conservation best management practices (BMPs). This paper documents watershed-scale assessments of the influence of multiple integrated BMPs on oxbow lake nutrient concentrations in a 625-ha watershed of intensive row-crop agricultural activity during a 14-yr monitoring period (1996-2009). A suite of BMPs within fields and at field edges throughout the watershed and enrollment of 87 ha into the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) were implemented from 1995 to 2006. Total phosphorus (TP), soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP), ammonium, and nitrate were measured approximately biweekly from 1996 to 2009, and total nitrogen (TN) was measured from 2001 to 2009. Decreases in several lake nutrient concentrations occurred after BMP implementation. Reductions in TP lake concentrations were associated with vegetative buffers and rainfall. No consistent patterns of changes in TN or SRP lake concentrations were observed. Reductions in ammonium lake concentrations were associated with conservation tillage and CRP. Reductions in nitrate lake concentrations were associated with vegetative buffers. Watershed simulations conducted with the AnnAGNPS (Annualized Agricultural Non-Point Source) model with and without BMPs also show a clear reduction in TN and TP loads to the lake after the implementation of BMPs. These results provide direct evidence of how watershed-wide BMPs assist in reducing nutrient loading in aquatic ecosystems and promote a more viable and sustainable lake ecosystem. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.
Bjorkhaug, Hilde; Richards, Carol Ann
Ideals of productivist agriculture in the Western world have faded as the unintended consequences of intensive agriculture and pastoralism have contributed to rural decline and environmental problems. In Norway and Australia, there has been an increasing acceptance of the equal importance of social and environmental sustainability as well as…
Gandra, Sumanth; Ellison, Richard T
Hospital-acquired infections (HAIs) are common in intensive care unit (ICU) patients and are associated with increased morbidity and mortality. There has been an increasing effort to prevent HAIs, and infection control practices are paramount in avoiding these complications. In the last several years, numerous developments have been seen in the infection prevention strategies in various health care settings. This article reviews the modern trends in infection control practices to prevent HAIs in ICUs with a focus on methods for monitoring hand hygiene, updates in isolation precautions, new methods for environmental cleaning, antimicrobial bathing, prevention of ventilator-associated pneumonia, central line-associated bloodstream infections, catheter-associated urinary tract infections, and Clostridium difficile infection. © The Author(s) 2013.
Dobbie, K. E.; McTaggart, I. P.; Smith, K. A.
Emissions of nitrous oxide from intensively managed agricultural fields were measured over 3 years. Exponential increases in flux occurred with increasing soil water- filled pore space (WFPS) and temperature; increases in soil mineral N content due to fertilizer application also stimulated emissions. Fluxes were low when any of these variables was below a critical value. The largest fluxes occurred when WFPS values were very high (70-90%), indicating that denitrification was the major process responsible. The relationships with the driving variables showed strong similarities to those reported for very different environments: irrigated sugar cane crops, pastures, and forest in the tropics. Annual emissions varied widely (0.3-18.4 kg N2O-N ha-1). These variations were principally due to the degree of coincidence of fertilizer application and major rainfall events. It is concluded therefore that several years' data are required from any agricultural ecosystem in a variable climate to obtain a robust estimate of mean N2O fluxes. The emissions from small-grain cereals (winter wheat and spring barley) were consistently lower (0.2-0.7 kg N2O-N per 100 kg N applied) than from cut grassland (0.3-5.8 kg N2O- N per 100 kg N). Crops such as broccoli and potatoes gave emissions of the same order as those from the grassland. Although these differences between crop types are not apparent in general data comparisons, there may well be distinct regional differences in the relative and absolute emissions from different crops, due to local factors relating to soil type, weather patterns, and agricultural management practices. This will only be determined by more detailed comparative studies.
Uden, Daniel R.; Allen, Craig R.; Mitchell, Rob B.; McCoy, Tim D.; Guan, Qingfeng
Conversion of native prairie to agriculture has increased food and bioenergy production but decreased wildlife habitat. However, enrollment of highly erodible cropland in conservation programs has compensated for some grassland loss. In the future, climate change and production of second-generation perennial biofuel crops could further transform agricultural landscapes and increase or decrease grassland area. Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) is an alternative biofuel feedstock that may be economically and environmentally superior to maize (Zea mays) grain for ethanol production on marginally productive lands. Switchgrass could benefit farmers economically and increase grassland area, but there is uncertainty as to how conversions between rowcrops, switchgrass monocultures and conservation grasslands might occur and affect wildlife. To explore potential impacts on grassland birds, we developed four agricultural land-use change scenarios for an intensively cultivated landscape, each driven by potential future climatic changes and ensuing irrigation limitations, ethanol demand, commodity prices, and continuation of a conservation program. For each scenario, we calculated changes in area for landcover classes and predicted changes in grassland bird abundances. Overall, birds responded positively to the replacement of rowcrops with switchgrass and negatively to the conversion of conservation grasslands to switchgrass or rowcrops. Landscape context and interactions between climate, crop water use, and irrigation availability could influence future land-use, and subsequently, avian habitat quality and quantity. Switchgrass is likely to provide higher quality avian habitat than rowcrops but lower quality habitat than conservation grasslands, and therefore, may most benefit birds in heavily cultivated, irrigation dependent landscapes under warmer and drier conditions, where economic profitability may also encourage conversions to drought tolerant bioenergy feedstocks.
Augustin, Katja; Kuhwald, Michael; Duttmann, Rainer
Several soil-pressure-models deal with the impact of agricultural machines on soils. In many cases, these models were used for single spots and consider a static machine configuration. Therefore, a statement about the spatial distribution of soil compaction risk for entire working processes is limited. The aim of the study is the development of an application for the spatial modelling of traffic lanes from agricultural vehicles including wheel load, ground pressure and wheel passages at the field scale. The application is based on Open Source software, application and data formats, using python programming language. Minimum input parameters are GPS-positions, vehicles and tires (producer and model) and the tire inflation pressure. Five working processes were distinguished: soil tillage, manuring, plant protection, sowing and harvest. Currently, two different models (Diserens 2009, Rücknagel et al. 2015) were implemented to calculate the soil pressure. The application was tested at a study site in Lower Saxony, Germany. Since 2015, field traffic were recorded by RTK-GPS and used machine set ups were noted. Using these input information the traffic lanes, wheel load and soil pressure were calculated for all working processes. For instance, the maize harvest in 2016 with a crop chopper and one transport vehicle crossed about 55 % of the total field area. At some places the machines rolled over up to 46 times. Approximately 35 % of the total area was affected by wheel loads over 7 tons and soil pressures between 163 and 193 kPa. With the information about the spatial distribution of wheel passages, wheel load and soil pressure it is possible to identify hot spots of intensive field traffic. Additionally, the use of the application enables the analysis of soil compaction risk induced by agricultural machines for long- and short-term periods.
Cormack, Barbara; Sinn, John; Lui, Kei; Tudehope, David
This survey investigated standardised feeding guidelines and nutrition policy in Australasian neonatal intensive care units and compared these with previously published surveys and international consensus nutrition recommendations. An electronic survey on enteral nutrition comprising a wide range of questions about clinical practice was e-mailed to all 25 Australasian neonatal intensive care unit directors of tertiary perinatal centres. Twenty-five surveys were distributed; 24 (96%) were completed. All respondents preferred breast milk as the first feed. For infants <1000 g, 58% started feeds at 1 mL every 4 hours and 83% started enteral feeds on day 0-2 in the absence of contraindications. The identification of bile-stained gastric aspirates significant enough to withhold feeds varied. Multicomponent breast milk fortifiers were added by 58% when enteral feeds reached 150 mL/kg day, while 21% added these earlier at 120 mL/kg day or less. Iron supplementation was started at 4 weeks by 63% and at 6 weeks by 27%. Only 42% of units had a neonatal dietitian. Of the 24 units who responded, 58% had no written enteral feeding guidelines. Enteral nutrition was initiated earlier than in the past. Great variation remains in clinical practices. Nutritional implications are discussed. Standardisation of feeding guidelines and enteral nutrition policy based on current evidence and international consensus nutrition recommendations may be beneficial and should be encouraged. © 2012 The Authors. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health © 2012 Paediatrics and Child Health Division (Royal Australasian College of Physicians).
Zhang, Xiaoxu; Xu, Xin; Liu, Yinglie; Wang, Jinyang; Xiong, Zhengqin
Our understanding of how global warming potential (GWP) and greenhouse gas intensity (GHGI) is affected by management practices aimed at food security with respect to rice agriculture remains limited. In the present study, a field experiment was conducted in China to evaluate the effects of integrated soil-crop system management (ISSM) on GWP and GHGI after accounting for carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent emissions from all sources, including methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions, agrochemical inputs and farm operations and sinks (i.e., soil organic carbon sequestration). The ISSM mainly consisted of different nitrogen (N) fertilization rates and split, manure, Zn and Na2SiO3 fertilization and planting density for the improvement of rice yield and agronomic nitrogen use efficiency (NUE). Four ISSM scenarios consisting of different chemical N rates relative to the local farmers' practice (FP) rate were carried out, namely, ISSM-N1 (25 % reduction), ISSM-N2 (10 % reduction), ISSM-N3 (FP rate) and ISSM-N4 (25 % increase). The results showed that compared with the FP, the four ISSM scenarios significantly increased the rice yields by 10, 16, 28 and 41 % and the agronomic NUE by 75, 67, 35 and 40 %, respectively. In addition, compared with the FP, the ISSM-N1 and ISSM-N2 scenarios significantly reduced the GHGI by 14 and 18 %, respectively, despite similar GWPs. The ISSM-N3 and ISSM-N4 scenarios remarkably increased the GWP and GHGI by an average of 69 and 39 %, respectively. In conclusion, the ISSM strategies are promising for both food security and environmental protection, and the ISSM scenario of ISSM-N2 is the optimal strategy to realize high yields and high NUE together with low environmental impacts for this agricultural rice field.
Wise, Edward A.
The development of a model for treating acutely depressed patients on a frequent basis in an independent practice setting is described. Strategies to collaborate with managed care organizations, employee assistance programs, and local provider networks to recruit these patients are outlined. The patients treated in the intensive outpatient program…
Nascimbene, Juri; Marini, Lorenzo; Paoletti, Maurizio G
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.
Muyanga, Milu; Jayne, T. S.
Private extension system has been at the centre of a debate triggered by inefficient public agricultural extension. The debate is anchored on the premise that the private sector is more efficient in extension service delivery. This study evaluates the private extension system in Kenya. It employs qualitative and quantitative methods. The results…
Tovar, Laura Gomez; Martin, Lauren; Cruz, Manuel Angel Gomez; Mutersbaugh, Tad
Certification within organic agriculture exhibits flexibility with respect to practices used to demonstrate that a product meets published quality standards. This case study of Mexican certified-organic agriculture finds two forms. Indigenous smallholders of southern Mexico undertake a low-input, process-oriented organic farming in which…
Agricultural non-point sources of nutrients and sediments have caused eutrophication and other water quality issues in aquatic and marine ecosystems, such as the annual occurrence of hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. Management practices have been implemented adjacent to and in agricultural drainage di...
Loos, Jacqueline; Dorresteijn, Ine; Hanspach, Jan; Fust, Pascal; Rakosy, László; Fischer, Joern
European farmland biodiversity is declining due to land use changes towards agricultural intensification or abandonment. Some Eastern European farming systems have sustained traditional forms of use, resulting in high levels of biodiversity. However, global markets and international policies now imply rapid and major changes to these systems. To effectively protect farmland biodiversity, understanding landscape features which underpin species diversity is crucial. Focusing on butterflies, we addressed this question for a cultural-historic landscape in Southern Transylvania, Romania. Following a natural experiment, we randomly selected 120 survey sites in farmland, 60 each in grassland and arable land. We surveyed butterfly species richness and abundance by walking transects with four repeats in summer 2012. We analysed species composition using Detrended Correspondence Analysis. We modelled species richness, richness of functional groups, and abundance of selected species in response to topography, woody vegetation cover and heterogeneity at three spatial scales, using generalised linear mixed effects models. Species composition widely overlapped in grassland and arable land. Composition changed along gradients of heterogeneity at local and context scales, and of woody vegetation cover at context and landscape scales. The effect of local heterogeneity on species richness was positive in arable land, but negative in grassland. Plant species richness, and structural and topographic conditions at multiple scales explained species richness, richness of functional groups and species abundances. Our study revealed high conservation value of both grassland and arable land in low-intensity Eastern European farmland. Besides grassland, also heterogeneous arable land provides important habitat for butterflies. While butterfly diversity in arable land benefits from heterogeneity by small-scale structures, grasslands should be protected from fragmentation to provide
Melland, Alice; Jordan, Phil; Wall, David; Mellander, Per-Erik; Mechan, Sarah; Shortle, Ger
The effectiveness of regulations introduced in Ireland in 2006 in response to the European Union Nitrates Directives for minimising nutrient loss to waterways from farms is being studied by Teagasc, the Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority as part of an Agricultural Catchments Programme from 2008 - 2011. The regulations in Ireland require that during winter, green cover is established and maintained on arable farms, manure is stored and not spread, ploughing is not conducted and that chemical fertiliser is not spread. The regulations also require buffer zones between fields and water courses when applying organic or chemical fertilisers and that nutrient application rates and timing match crop requirements. An upper limit for livestock manure loading of 170 kg ha-1 organic N each year is also set. The biophysical research component of the Agricultural Catchments Programme is focussed on quantifying nutrient source availability, surface and subsurface transport pathways and stream chemical water quality. A baseline description of stream ecological quality was also sought. Stream ecology was measured in autumn 2009 at 3-5 locations within four surface water catchments and at the spring emergence of a catchment underlain by karst limestone. Landuse in each catchment is dominated by medium to high intensity grassland or cereal farming and annual average rainfall ranges from 900 - 1200 mm. Surveys were conducted in 1st to 3rd order streams throughout each catchment at locations which had minimal observed point source inputs for 100m upstream, incomplete shade, a hard streambed substrate and riffle conditions suitable for the sampling methods. Benthic macroinvertebrates were identified and quantified and used to calculate the biological indices Small Stream Risk Score, Q-value, Biological Monitoring Working Party (BMWP), Average Score Per Taxa (ASPT) and EQR (Observed Q-value/Reference Q-value). Diatom community assemblages were identified from samples
Hansen, James W
Interest in integrating crop simulation models with dynamic seasonal climate forecast models is expanding in response to a perceived opportunity to add value to seasonal climate forecasts for agriculture. Integrated modelling may help to address some obstacles to effective agricultural use of climate information. First, modelling can address the mismatch between farmers' needs and available operational forecasts. Probabilistic crop yield forecasts are directly relevant to farmers' livelihood decisions and, at a different scale, to early warning and market applications. Second, credible ex ante evidence of livelihood benefits, using integrated climate–crop–economic modelling in a value-of-information framework, may assist in the challenge of obtaining institutional, financial and political support; and inform targeting for greatest benefit. Third, integrated modelling can reduce the risk and learning time associated with adaptation and adoption, and related uncertainty on the part of advisors and advocates. It can provide insights to advisors, and enhance site-specific interpretation of recommendations when driven by spatial data. Model-based ‘discussion support systems’ contribute to learning and farmer–researcher dialogue. Integrated climate–crop modelling may play a genuine, but limited role in efforts to support climate risk management in agriculture, but only if they are used appropriately, with understanding of their capabilities and limitations, and with cautious evaluation of model predictions and of the insights that arises from model-based decision analysis. PMID:16433092
Wacha, K. M.; Papanicolaou, T.; Wilson, C. G.
Field measurements and numerical models are currently being used to estimate quantities of Total Belowground Carbon Allocation (TBCA) for three representative land uses, viz. corn, soybeans, and prairie bromegrass for CRP (Conservation Reserve Program) of an agricultural Iowa sub-watershed, located within the Clear Creek Watershed (CCW). Since it is difficult to measure TBCA directly, a mass balance approach has been implemented to estimate TBCA as follows: TBCA = FS + FE+ Δ(CS + CR + CL) - FA , where the term Fs denotes soil respiration; FE is the carbon content of the eroded/deposited soil; ΔCS, ΔCR, ΔCL denote the changes in carbon content of the mineral soil, plant roots, and litter layer, respectively; and FA is the above ground litter fall of dead plant material to the soil. The terms are hypothesized to have a huge impact on TBCA within agricultural settings due to intensive tillage practices, water-driven soil erosion/deposition, and high usage of fertilizer. To test our hypothesis, field measurements are being performed at the plot scale, replicating common agricultural land management practices. Soil respiration (FS) is being measured with an EGM-4 CO2 Gas Analyzer and SRC-1 Soil Respiration Chamber (PP Systems), soil moisture and temperature are recorded in the top 20 cm for each respective soil respiration measurement, and litter fall rates (FA) are acquired by collecting the residue in a calibrated pan. The change in carbon content of the soil (ΔCS), roots (ΔCR) and litter layer (ΔCL) are being analyzed by collecting soil samples throughout the life cycle of the plant. To determine the term FE for the three representative land management practices, a funnel collection system located at the plot outlet was used for collecting the eroded material after natural rainfall events. Field measurements of TBCA at the plot scale via the mass balance approach are used to calibrate the numerical agronomic process model DAYCENT, which simulates the daily
Hubert, D J; Ullrich, D R; Murphy, T H; Lindner, J R
The purpose of this study was to gather benchmark data for the assessment of the knowledge, attitudes, and perceptions regarding agricultural safety issues and curricula held by Texas agricultural teachers with less than two full years of teaching experience (entry-year teachers). Seventy-four of 118 well-distributed teachers responded to this survey. Researchers concluded that more females were entering a traditionally male-dominated field. Overall, teachers addressed safety within units of instruction rather than as separate units. The most useful forms of new teaching resources that this group of teachers would like to see produced were safety videos and study guides, and class demonstration/simulation activities. There was a significant difference in rankings between teachers less than 26 years old and teachers more than 26 years old regarding the usefulness of transparencies as a new teaching resource (F = 5.00, p = 0.0268). Few teachers were currently CPR and first aid certified, even though most had received training and completed a general safety and/or health related course while in college. Teachers generally agreed philosophically with most practices and exhibited personal beliefs consistent with proper safety preparedness and practice in agricultural settings. However, many of these teachers failed to practice what was expected of safe tractor operators, such as wearing safety belts and allowing younger drivers to operate the equipment.
Martín-Queller, Emi; Moreno-Mateos, David; Pedrocchi, César; Cervantes, Juan; Martínez, Gonzalo
Irrigation return flows (IRF) are a major contributor of non-point source pollution to surface and groundwater. We evaluated the effects of irrigation on stream hydrochemistry in a Mediterranean semi-arid catchment (Flumen River, NE Spain). The Flumen River was separated into two zones based on the intensity of irrigation activities in the watershed. General linear models were used to compare the two zones. Relevant covariables (urban sewage, pig farming, and gypsum deposits in the basin) were quantified with the help of geographic information system techniques, accompanied by ground-truthing. High variability of the water quality parameters and temporal dynamics caused by irrigation were used to distinguish the two river reaches. Urban activity and livestock farming had a significant effect on water chemistry. An increase in the concentration of salts (240-541 microS.cm(-1) more in winter) and nitrate (average concentrations increased from 8.5 to 20.8 mg.l(-1) during irrigation months) was associated with a higher level of IRF. Those river reaches more strongly influenced by urban areas tended to have higher phosphorus (0.19-0.42 mg.l(-1) more in winter) concentrations. These results support earlier research about the significant consequences to water quality of both urban expansion and intensive agricultural production in arid and semi-arid regions. Data also indicate that salinization of soils, subsoils, surface water, and groundwater can be an unwelcome result of the application of pig manure for fertilization (increase in sodium concentration in 77.9 to 138.6 mg.l(-1)).
Waite, Ian R.
Research was conducted at 28-30 sites within eight study areas across the United States along a gradient of nutrient enrichment/agricultural land use between 2003 and 2007. Objectives were to test the application of an agricultural intensity index (AG-Index) and compare among various invertebrate and algal metrics to determine indicators of nutrient enrichment nationally and within three regions. The agricultural index was based on total nitrogen and phosphorus input to the watershed, percent watershed agriculture, and percent riparian agriculture. Among data sources, agriculture within riparian zone showed significant differences among values generated from remote sensing or from higher resolution orthophotography; median values dropped significantly when estimated by orthophotography. Percent agriculture in the watershed consistently had lower correlations to invertebrate and algal metrics than the developed AG-Index across all regions. Percent agriculture showed fewer pairwise comparisons that were significant than the same comparisons using the AG-Index. Highest correlations to the AG-Index regionally were −0.75 for Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, and Trichoptera richness (EPTR) and −0.70 for algae Observed/Expected (O/E), nationally the highest was −0.43 for EPTR vs. total nitrogen and −0.62 for algae O/E vs. AG-Index. Results suggest that analysis of metrics at national scale can often detect large differences in disturbance, but more detail and specificity is obtained by analyzing data at regional scales.
Pistocchi, Chiara; Baneschi, Ilaria; Basile, Paolo; Cannavò, Silvia; Guidi, Massimo; Risaliti, Rosalba; Rossetto, Rudy; Sabbatini, Tiziana; Silvestri, Nicola; Bonari, Enrico
Owing to increasing anthropogenic impacts, lagoons and wetlands are being exposed to environmental degradation. Therefore, the sustainable management of these environmental resources is a fundamental issue to maintain either the ecosystems and the human activity. The Massaciuccoli Lake is a coastal lake of fresh to brackish water surrounded by a marsh, which drains a total catchment of about 114 km2. Large part of the basin has been reclaimed since 1930 by means of pumping stations forcing water from the drained areas into the lake. The system is characterized by: high complexity of the hydrological setting; subsidence of the peaty soils in the reclaimed area (2 to 3 m in 70 years), that left the lake perched; reclaimed land currently devoted mainly to conventional agriculture (e.g.: maize monoculture) along with some industrial sites, two sewage treatment plants and some relevant urban settlements; social conflicts among different land users because of the impact on water quality and quantity. The interaction between such a fragile natural system and human activities leads to an altered ecological status mainly due to eutrophication and water salinisation. Hence, the present work aims at identifying and assessing the sources of nutrients (phosphorous in particular) into the lake, and characterising land use and some socio-economic aspects focusing on agricultural systems, in order to set up suitable mitigation measures. Water quantity and quality in the most intensively cultivated sub-catchment, placed 0.5 to 3 m under m.s.l. were monitored in order to underlain the interaction between water and its nutrient load. Questionnaires and interviews to farmers were conducted to obtain information about agricultural practices, farm management, risks and constraints for farming activities. The available information about the natural system and land use were collected and organised in a GIS system: a conceptual model of surface water hydrodinamics was build up and 14
The accuracy of the exposure assessment is a critical factor in epidemiological investigations of pesticide exposures and health in agricultural populations. However, few studies have been conducted to evaluate questionnaire-based exposure metrics. The Agricultural Health Study...
Lebeau, Julie; Wesselingh, Renate A; Van Dyck, Hans
Flight is an essential biological ability of many insects, but is energetically costly. Environments under rapid human-induced change are characterized by habitat fragmentation and may impose constraints on the energy income budget of organisms. This may, in turn, affect locomotor performance and willingness to fly. We tested flight performance and metabolic rates in meadow brown butterflies (Maniola jurtina) of two contrasted agricultural landscapes: intensively managed, nectar-poor (IL) versus extensively managed, nectar-rich landscapes (EL). Young female adults were submitted to four nectar treatments (i.e. nectar quality and quantity) in outdoor flight cages. IL individuals had better flight capacities in a flight mill and had lower resting metabolic rates (RMR) than EL individuals, except under the severest treatment. Under this treatment, RMR increased in IL individuals, but decreased in EL individuals; flight performance was maintained by IL individuals, but dropped by a factor 2.5 in EL individuals. IL individuals had more canalized (i.e. less plastic) responses relative to the nectar treatments than EL individuals. Our results show significant intraspecific variation in the locomotor and metabolic response of a butterfly to different energy income regimes relative to the landscape of origin. Ecophysiological studies help to improve our mechanistic understanding of the eco-evolutionary impact of anthropogenic environments on rare and widespread species. © 2016 The Author(s).
Lebeau, Julie; Wesselingh, Renate A.; Van Dyck, Hans
Flight is an essential biological ability of many insects, but is energetically costly. Environments under rapid human-induced change are characterized by habitat fragmentation and may impose constraints on the energy income budget of organisms. This may, in turn, affect locomotor performance and willingness to fly. We tested flight performance and metabolic rates in meadow brown butterflies (Maniola jurtina) of two contrasted agricultural landscapes: intensively managed, nectar-poor (IL) versus extensively managed, nectar-rich landscapes (EL). Young female adults were submitted to four nectar treatments (i.e. nectar quality and quantity) in outdoor flight cages. IL individuals had better flight capacities in a flight mill and had lower resting metabolic rates (RMR) than EL individuals, except under the severest treatment. Under this treatment, RMR increased in IL individuals, but decreased in EL individuals; flight performance was maintained by IL individuals, but dropped by a factor 2.5 in EL individuals. IL individuals had more canalized (i.e. less plastic) responses relative to the nectar treatments than EL individuals. Our results show significant intraspecific variation in the locomotor and metabolic response of a butterfly to different energy income regimes relative to the landscape of origin. Ecophysiological studies help to improve our mechanistic understanding of the eco-evolutionary impact of anthropogenic environments on rare and widespread species. PMID:27147100
Lenat, David R.
Agricultural runoff affects many streams in North Carolina. However, there is is little information about either its effect on stream biota or any potential mitigation by erosion control practices. In this study, benthic macroinvertebrates were sampled in three different geographic areas of North Carolina, comparing control watersheds with well-managed and poorly managed watersheds. Agricultural streams were characterized by lower taxa richness (especially for intolerant groups) and low stability. These effects were most evident at the poorly managed sites. Sedimentation was the apparent major problem, but some changes at agricultural sites implied water quality problems. The groups most intolerant of agricultural runoff were Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera and Trichoptera. Tolerant species were usually filter-feeders or algal grazers, suggesting a modification of the food web by addition of particulate organic matter and nutrients. This study clearly indicates that agricultural runoff can severely impact stream biota. However, this impact can be greatly mitigated by currently recommended erosion control practices.
Ruiz, Julie; Domon, Gerald
An understanding of the relationships between local populations and the landscape is crucial for reintroducing the multifunctional character of landscapes in areas of intensive agricultural use. This study proposes to identify and compare the relationships that local populations, both farmers and non-farmers, maintain with their landscapes in…
Piccoli, Ilaria; Camarotto, Carlo; Lazzaro, Barbara; Furlan, Lorenzo; Morari, Francesco
Soil structure plays a pivotal role in soil functioning and can inform of the degradation of the soil ecosystem. Intensive and repeated tillage operations have been known to negatively affect the soil structure characteristics while conservation agriculture (CA) practices were demonstrated to improve soil structure and related ecosystem services. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of conservation agriculture practices on total porosity, pore size distribution, pore architecture and morphology on silty soils of Veneto low-lying plain (North-Eastern Italy). Experimental design was established in 2010 on 4 farms in North-Eastern Italy to compare conventional intensive tillage system "IT" versus conservation agriculture "CA" (no-tillage, cover-crop and residue retention). 96 samples were collected in 2015 at four depths down to 50 cm depth, and investigated for porosity from micro to macro by coupling mercury intrusion porosimetry (MIP) (0.0074-100 µm) and x-ray computed microtomography (µCT) (>26 µm). Pore morphology and architecture were studied from 3D images analysis and MIP pore size curve. Ultramicroporosity class (0.1-5 μm) positively responded to CA after 5-yr of practices adoption while no significant effects were observed in the x-ray µCT domain (> 26 µm). Silty soils of Veneto plain showed a slow reaction to conservation agriculture because of the low soil organic carbon content and poor aggregate stability. Nevertheless the positive influence of CA on ultramicroporosity, which is strictly linked to soil organic carbon (SOC) stabilization, indicated that a virtuous cycle was initiated between SOC and porosity, hopefully leading to well-developed macropore systems and, in turn, enhanced soil functions and ecosystem services.
Deng, Ouping; Zhang, Shirong; Deng, Liangji; Zhang, Chunlong; Fei, Jianbo
Understanding of the spatial and temporal variation of the flux of atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition is essential for assessment of its impact on ecosystems. However, little attention has been paid to the variability of N deposition across urban-intensive agricultural-rural transects. A continuous 2-year observational study (from January 2015 to December 2016) was conducted to determine wet N deposition across the urban-intensive agricultural-rural transect of a small urban area in southwest China. Significantly spatial and temporal variations were found in the research area. Along the urban-intensive agricultural-rural transect, the TN and NH 4 + -N deposition first increased and then decreased, and the NO 3 - -N and dissolved organic N (DON) deposition decreased continuously. Wet N deposition was mainly affected by the districts of agro-facilities, roads and build up lands. Wet NH 4 + -N deposition had non-seasonal emission sources including industrial emissions and urban excretory wastes in urban districts and seasonal emission sources such as fertilizer and manure volatilization in the other districts. However, wet NO 3 - -N deposition had seasonal emission sources such as industrial emissions and fireworks in urban district and non-seasonal emission sources such as transportation in the other districts. Deposition of DON was likely to have had similar sources to NO 3 - -N deposition in rural district, and high-temperature-dependent sources in urban and intensive agricultural districts. Considering the annual wet TN deposition in the intensive agricultural district was about 11.1% of the annual N fertilizer input, N fertilizer rates of crops should be reduced in this region to avoid the excessive application, and the risk of N emissions to the environment.
Retamal, Jaime; Castillo, Juan; Bugedo, Guillermo; Bruhn, Alejandro
In patients with an artificial airway, inspired gases can be humidified and heated using a passive (heat and moisture exchange filter - HMEF), or an active system (heated humidifier). To assess how humidification is carried out and what is the usual clinical practice in this field in Chilean intensive care units (ICUs). A specific survey to evaluate humidification system features as well as caregivers' preferences regarding humidification systems, was carried out on the same day in all Chilean ICUs. Fifty-five ICUs were contacted and 44 of them completed the survey. From a total of 367 patients, 254 (69%) required humidification because they were breathing through an artificial airway. A heated humidifier was employed only in 12 patients (5%). Forty-three ICUs (98%) used HMEF as their routine humidification system. In 52% of surveyed ICUs, heated humidifiers were not available. In Chile the main method to humidify and heat inspired gases in patients with an artificial airway is the HMEF. Although there are clear indications for the use of heated humidifiers, they are seldom employed.
Zeweld, Woldegebrial; Van Huylenbroeck, Guido; Tesfay, Girmay; Speelman, Stijn
The introduction of sustainable practices is considered a win-win strategy for low-income countries because of its potential to simultaneously improve food security and address environmental issues. Despite the numerous studies that focus on the adoption of technological innovations, little work has been done on the socio-psychological behaviour of farmers with regard to sustainable practices. This study investigates smallholder farmers' intentions towards two practices: minimum tillage and row planting. The decomposed theory of planned behaviour is used as a theoretical framework to analyse the intentions. The findings reveal that attitudes and normative issues positively explain farmers' intentions to adopt both practices. Perceived control also has a positive significant effect on the intention to apply minimum tillage. When the intention is formed, farmers are expected to carry out their intention when opportunities arise. Moreover, perceived usefulness, social capital, and perceived ease of operation are also significant predictors of farmers' attitudes. Furthermore, social capital and training are factors that positively affect the normative issue, which in turn also positively mediates the relationship between training, social capital and intention. Finally, it is shown that neither the perceived resources nor information from the media significantly affect farmers' intentions. This paper thus confirms that social capital, personal efficacy, training and perceived usefulness play significant roles in the decision to adopt sustainable practices. In addition, willingness to adopt seems to be limited by negative attitudes and by weak normative issues. Therefore, to improve adoption of sustainable practices by smallholder farmers, attention should be given to socio-psychological issues. This could lead to improvements in farm productivity and enhance the livelihoods of smallholders. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Paradis, Daniel; Ballard, Jean-Marc; Lefebvre, René; Savard, Martine M.
Nitrate transport in heterogeneous bedrock aquifers is influenced by mechanisms that operate at different spatial and temporal scales. To understand these mechanisms in a fractured sandstone aquifer with high porosity, a groundwater-flow and nitrate transport model—reproducing multiple hydraulic and chemical targets—was developed to explain the actual nitrate contamination observed in groundwater and surface water in a study area on Prince Edward Island, Canada. Simulations show that nitrate is leached to the aquifer year-round, with 61% coming from untransformed and transformed organic sources originating from fertilizers and manure. This nitrate reaches the more permeable shallow aquifer through fractures in weathered sandstone that represent only 1% of the total porosity (17%). Some of the nitrate reaches the underlying aquifer, which is less active in terms of groundwater flow, but most of it is drained to the main river. The river-water quality is controlled by the nitrate input from the shallow aquifer. Groundwater in the underlying aquifer, which has long residence times, is also largely influenced by the diffusion of nitrate in the porous sandstone matrix. Consequently, following a change of fertilizer application practices, water quality in domestic wells and the river would change rapidly due to the level of nitrate found in fractures, but a lag time of up to 20 years would be necessary to reach a steady level due to diffusion. This demonstrates the importance of understanding nitrate transport mechanisms when designing effective agricultural and water management plans to improve water quality.
Turcotte, Martin M; Araki, Hitoshi; Karp, Daniel S; Poveda, Katja; Whitehead, Susan R
Agriculture is a dominant evolutionary force that drives the evolution of both domesticated and wild species. However, the various mechanisms of agriculture-induced evolution and their socio-ecological consequences are not often synthetically discussed. Here, we explore how agricultural practices and evolutionary changes in domesticated species cause evolution in wild species. We do so by examining three processes by which agriculture drives evolution. First, differences in the traits of domesticated species, compared with their wild ancestors, alter the selective environment and create opportunities for wild species to specialize. Second, selection caused by agricultural practices, including both those meant to maximize productivity and those meant to control pest species, can lead to pest adaptation. Third, agriculture can cause non-selective changes in patterns of gene flow in wild species. We review evidence for these processes and then discuss their ecological and sociological impacts. We finish by identifying important knowledge gaps and future directions related to the eco-evolutionary impacts of agriculture including their extent, how to prevent the detrimental evolution of wild species, and finally, how to use evolution to minimize the ecological impacts of agriculture.This article is part of the themed issue 'Human influences on evolution, and the ecological and societal consequences'. © 2016 The Author(s).
Araki, Hitoshi; Karp, Daniel S.; Poveda, Katja
Agriculture is a dominant evolutionary force that drives the evolution of both domesticated and wild species. However, the various mechanisms of agriculture-induced evolution and their socio-ecological consequences are not often synthetically discussed. Here, we explore how agricultural practices and evolutionary changes in domesticated species cause evolution in wild species. We do so by examining three processes by which agriculture drives evolution. First, differences in the traits of domesticated species, compared with their wild ancestors, alter the selective environment and create opportunities for wild species to specialize. Second, selection caused by agricultural practices, including both those meant to maximize productivity and those meant to control pest species, can lead to pest adaptation. Third, agriculture can cause non-selective changes in patterns of gene flow in wild species. We review evidence for these processes and then discuss their ecological and sociological impacts. We finish by identifying important knowledge gaps and future directions related to the eco-evolutionary impacts of agriculture including their extent, how to prevent the detrimental evolution of wild species, and finally, how to use evolution to minimize the ecological impacts of agriculture. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Human influences on evolution, and the ecological and societal consequences’. PMID:27920378
Bilevel and multi-objective optimization methods are often useful to spatially target agri-environmental policy throughout a watershed. This type of problem is complex and is comprised of a number of practicalities: (i) a large number of decision variables, (ii) at least two inte...
Killingsworth, Justin Lee
Federal legislation mandates that appropriate education be provided for all students in US public schools (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 2004; No Child Left Behind, 2001). The use of evidence-based instructional practices for special education, such as Direct Instruction and Strategy Instruction, is one example of mandated…
Pouchard, Line; Bracke, Marianne Stowell
This paper describes a survey of data practices given to the Purdue College of Agriculture. Data practices are a concern for many researchers with new governmental funding mandates that require data management plans, and for the institution providing resources to comply with these mandates. The survey attempted to answer these questions: What are…
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.
Malila, W. A.; Pestre, C. R.
Landsat data contain features that can be interpreted to produce information about crops, in support of crop estimation procedures. This paper considers ways in which detailed knowledge of agricultural practices and events might increase and improve the utilization of Landsat data in both the predictive and observational or measurement components of such procedures. Landsat observables related to agricultural practices and events throughout the cropping season are listed. Agricultural fields are identified as the preferred observational units for incorporating refined agricultural understanding, such as crop rotation patterns, into machine procedures. Uses of Landsat data from both prior seasons and the current season are considered, as is use of predictive models of crop appearance. The investigation of knowledge engineering systems tailored to through-the-season estimation problems is recommended for long range development.
Agricultural practices contribute significant amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, but little is known about their effects on net global warming potential (GWP) and greenhouse gas intensity (GHGI) that account for all sources and sinks of carbon dioxide emissions per unit area or crop yield. Se...
Divatia, Jigeeshu V; Amin, Pravin R; Ramakrishnan, Nagarajan; Kapadia, Farhad N; Todi, Subhash; Sahu, Samir; Govil, Deepak; Chawla, Rajesh; Kulkarni, Atul P; Samavedam, Srinivas; Jani, Charu K; Rungta, Narendra; Samaddar, Devi Prasad; Mehta, Sujata; Venkataraman, Ramesh; Hegde, Ashit; Bande, B D; Dhanuka, Sanjay; Singh, Virendra; Tewari, Reshma; Zirpe, Kapil; Sathe, Prachee
To obtain information on organizational aspects, case mix and practices in Indian Intensive Care Units (ICUs). An observational, 4-day point prevalence study was performed between 2010 and 2011 in 4209 patients from 124 ICUs. ICU and patient characteristics, and interventions were recorded for 24 h of the study day, and outcomes till 30 days after the study day. Data were analyzed for 4038 adult patients from 120 ICUs. On the study day, mean age, Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation (APACHE II) and sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) scores were 54.1 ± 17.1 years, 17.4 ± 9.2 and 3.8 ± 3.6, respectively. About 46.4% patients had ≥1 organ failure. Nearly, 37% and 22.2% patients received mechanical ventilation (MV) and vasopressors or inotropes, respectively. Nearly, 12.2% patients developed an infection in the ICU. About 28.3% patients had severe sepsis or septic shock (SvSpSS) during their ICU stay. About 60.7% patients without infection received antibiotics. There were 546 deaths and 183 terminal discharges (TDs) from ICU (including left against medical advice or discharged on request), with ICU mortality 729/4038 (18.1%). In 1627 patients admitted within 24 h of the study day, the standardized mortality ratio was 0.67. The APACHE II and SOFA scores, public hospital ICUs, medical ICUs, inadequately equipped ICUs, medical admission, self-paying patient, presence of SvSpSS, acute respiratory failure or cancer, need for a fluid bolus, and MV were independent predictors of mortality. The high proportion of TDs and the association of public hospitals, self-paying patients, and inadequately equipped hospitals with mortality has important implications for critical care in India.
Haute, Sam van; Sampers, Imca; Jacxsens, Liesbeth; Uyttendaele, Mieke
This paper comprises a selection tool for water disinfection methods for fresh produce pre- and postharvest practices. A variety of water disinfection technologies is available on the market and no single technology is the best choice for all applications. It can be difficult for end users to choose the technology that is best fit for a specific application. Therefore, the different technologies were characterized in order to identify criteria that influence the suitability of a technology for pre- or postharvest applications. Introduced criteria were divided into three principal components: (i) criteria related to the technology and which relate to the disinfection efficiency, (ii) attention points for the management and proper operation, and (iii) necessities in order to sustain the operation with respect to the environment. The selection criteria may help the end user of the water disinfection technology to obtain a systematic insight into all relevant aspects to be considered for preliminary decision making on which technologies should be put to feasibility testing for water disinfection in pre- and postharvest practices of the fresh produce chain.
Pennington, Brittany; Pokorski, Elizabeth A.; Kumm, Skip; Sterrett, Brittany I.
The National Center for Leadership in Intensive Intervention (NCLII), a consortium funded by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), prepares special education leaders to become experts in research on intensive intervention for students with disabilities who have persistent and severe academic (e.g., reading and math) and behavioral…
Walte, Samantha; Brown, Christerralyn; Wallace, Theresa
The National Center for Leadership in Intensive Intervention (NCLII), a consortium funded by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), prepares special education leaders to become experts in research on intensive intervention for students with disabilities who have persistent and severe academic (e.g., reading and math) and behavioral…
To better understand, implement and integrate best management practices (BMPs) in agricultural watersheds, critical information on their effectiveness is required. A representative agricultural watershed, Beasley Lake, was used to compare runoff water quality draining through an integrated system of...
Welton, Michael; Robb, Sara W; Shen, Ye; Guillebeau, Paul; Vena, John
Georgia has prostate cancer incidence rates consistently above the national average. A notable portion of Georgia's economy is rooted in agricultural production, and agricultural practices have been associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer. Statistical analyses considered county age-adjusted prostate cancer incidence rates as the outcome of interest and three agricultural variables (farmland as percent of county land, dollars spent per county acre on agriculture chemicals, and dollars spent per county acre on commercial fertilizers) as exposures of interest. Multivariate linear regression models analyzed for each separately. Data were obtained from National Cancer Institute Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) 2000-2010, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) 1987 Agriculture Survey, and 2010 US Census. In counties with equal to or greater than Georgia counties' median percent African-American population (27%), dollars per acre spent on agriculture chemicals was significantly associated (P = 0.04) and dollars spent of commercial fertilizers was moderately associated (P = 0.07) with elevated prostate cancer incidence rates. There was no association between percent of county farmland and prostate cancer rates. This study identified associations between prostate cancer incidence rates, agriculture chemical expenditure, and commercial fertilizer expenditure in Georgia counties with a population comprised of more than 27% of African Americans.
Tanner, Smadar; Katra, Itzhak; Zaady, Eli
Eolian (wind) erosion is a widespread process and a major form of soil degradation in arid and semi-arid regions. The present study examined changes in soil properties and eolian soil loss at a field scale in response to different soil treatments in two rain-fed agricultural practices. Field experiments with a boundary-layer wind tunnel and soil analysis were used to obtain the data. Two practices with different soil treatments (after harvest), mechanical tillage and stubble grazing intensities, were applied in the fallow phase of the rotation (dry season). The mechanical tillage and the stubble grazing had an immediate and direct effects on soil aggregation but not on the soil texture, and the contents of soil water, organic matter, and CaCO3. Higher erosion rates, that was measured as fluxes of total eolian sediment and particulate matter <10 μm (PM10), were recorded under mechanical tillage and grazing intensities compared with the undisturbed topsoil of the control plots. The erosion rates were higher in grazing plots than in tillage plots. The calculated soil fluxes in this study indicate potentially rapid soil degradation due to loss of fine particles by wind. The finding may have implications for long-term management of agricultural soils in semi-arid areas.
Ganz, Freda DeKeyser; Ofra, Raanan; Khalaila, Rabia; Levy, Hadassa; Arad, Dana; Kolpak, Orly; Ben Nun, Maureen; Drori, Yardena; Benbenishty, Julie
The purpose of this study was to determine whether there was a change in the oral care practices of intensive care unit (ICU) nurses for ventilated patients after a national effort to increase evidence-based oral care practices. Descriptive comparison of ICU nurses in 2004-2005 and 2012. Two convenience national surveys of ICU nurses were collected in 2004-2005 (n = 218) and 2012 (n = 233). After the results of the initial survey were reported, a national effort to increase awareness of evidence-based oral care practices was conducted that included in-service presentations; publication of an evidence-based protocol in a national nursing journal; publication of the survey findings in an international nursing journal; and reports to the local press. A repeat survey was conducted 7 to 8 years later. The same survey instrument was used for both periods of data collection. This questionnaire included questions about demographic and personal characteristics and a checklist of oral care practices. Nurses rated their perceived priority level concerning oral care on a scale from 0 to 100. An evidence-based practice (EBP)[O4] score was computed representing the sum of 14 items related to equipment, solutions, assessments, and techniques associated with the evidence. The EBP score, priority score, and oral care practices were compared between the two samples. A regression model was built based on those variables that were associated with the EBP score in 2012. There was a statistically significant increase in the use of EBPs as shown by the EBP score and in the perceived priority level of oral care. Increased EBPs were found in the areas of teeth brushing and oral assessment. Decreases were found in the use of non-evidence-based practices, such as the use of gauze pads, tongue depressors, lemon water, and sodium bicarbonate. No differences were found in the use of chlorhexidine, toothpaste, or the nursing documentation of oral care practices. A multiple regression model was
This ethnographic research study aimed at investigating factors that contributed to the decline in the number of practical assessed projects in junior secondary agricultural education assessment in Botswana. Participant-observation technique was used to gather data in the form of field notes from in-service teachers at BCA and in-school teachers…
Gamble, Donald S; Bruccoleri, Aldo G
Two categories of pesticide soil models now exist. Government regulatory agencies use pesticide fate and transport hydrology models, including versions of PRZM.gw. They have good descriptions of pesticide transport by water flow. Their descriptions of chemical mechanisms are unrealistic, having been postulated using the universally accepted but incorrect pesticide soil science. The objective of this work is to report experimental tests of a pesticide soil model in use by regulatory agencies and to suggest possible improvements. Tests with experimentally based data explain why PRZM.gw predictions can be wrong by orders of magnitude. Predictive spreadsheet models are the other category. They are experimentally based, with chemical stoichiometry applied to integral kinetic rate laws for sorption, desorption, intra-particle diffusion, and chemical reactions. They do not account for pesticide transport through soils. Each category of models therefore lacks what the other could provide. They need to be either harmonized or replaced. Some preliminary tests indicate that an experimental mismatch between the categories of models will have to be resolved. Reports of pesticides in the environment and the medical problems that overlap geographically indicate that government regulatory practice needs to account for chemical kinetics and mechanisms. Questions about possible cause and effect links could then be investigated.
Tasrip, N. E.; Mat Husin, N.; Alrazi, B.
This study content analyses the energy content in the corporate report of top 30 Malaysian energy-intensive companies. Motivated by the gap among prior corporate social responsibility and environmental reporting studies in respect of energy, this study provides evidence of Malaysian companies’ initiative to reduce energy consumption. While the evidence suggests that not all 30 companies have reported energy-related information, the findings provide an overview on the response of energy intensive companies in relation to Malaysian government initiatives on energy.
Sarkar, Atanu; Patil, Shantagouda; Hugar, Lingappa B; vanLoon, Gary
In order to support agribusiness and to attain food security for ever-increasing populations, most countries in the world have embraced modern agricultural technologies. Ecological consequences of the technocentric approaches, and their sustainability and impacts on human health have, however, not received adequate attention particularly in developing countries. India is one country that has undergone a rapid transformation in the field of agriculture by adopting strategies of the Green Revolution. This article provides a comparative analysis of the effects of older and newer paradigms of agricultural practices on ecosystem and human health within the larger context of sustainability. The study was conducted in three closely situated areas where different agricultural practices were followed: (a) the head-end of a modern canal-irrigated area, (b) an adjacent dryland, and (c) an area (the ancient area) that has been provided with irrigation for some 800 years. Data were collected by in-depth interviews of individual farmers, focus-group discussions, participatory observations, and from secondary sources. The dryland, receiving limited rainfall, continues to practice diverse cropping centered to a large extent on traditional coarse cereals and uses only small amounts of chemical inputs. On the other hand, modern agriculture in the head-end emphasizes continuous cropping of rice supported by extensive and indiscriminate use of agrochemicals. Market forces have, to a significant degree, influenced the ancient area to abandon much of its early practices of organic farming and to take up aspects of modern agricultural practice. Rice cultivation in the irrigated parts has changed the local landscape and vegetation and has augmented the mosquito population, which is a potential vector for malaria, Japanese encephalitis and other diseases. Nevertheless, despite these problems, perceptions of adverse environmental effects are lowest in the heavily irrigated area.
John T. Nowak; C. Wayne Berisford
Intensive forest management practices have been shown to increase tree growth and shorten rotation time. However, they may also lead to an increased need for insect pest management because of higher infestation levels and lower action thresholds. To investigate the relationship between intensive management practices arid insect infestation, maximum growth potential...
The responses of a selected soil microbial property to a single agricultural management practice are often inconsistent among field studies, possibly reflecting the site-specific nature of field studies. An equally compelling explanation is that in complex systems where outcomes are the result of n...
Increase in agricultural practices in the Cerrado (tropical savannah) and Amazon regions in Brazil is causing drastic changes in the nutrient and carbon cycling of native areas. Because microorganisms play a key role in biogeochemical cycling, monitoring the shifts in the microb...
Threeton, Mark D.; Ewing, John C.; Evanoski, Danielle C.
Providing safe and secure teaching and learning environments within schools is an ongoing process which requires a significant amount of attention. Therefore, this study sought to: 1) explore safety and health practices within secondary Agricultural Mechanics Education; and 2) identify the perceived obstacles which appear to hinder implementation…
Lambert, Misty D.; Torres, Robert M.; Tummons, John D.
Monitoring the stress of teachers continues to be important--particularly stress levels of beginning agriculture teachers. The study sought to describe the relationship between beginning teachers' perceived ability to manage their time and their level of stress. The Time Management Practices Inventory and the Job Stress Survey were used to measure…
An algorithm developed to estimate pesticide exposure intensity for use in epidemiologic analyses was revised based on data from two exposure monitoring studies. In the first study, we estimated relative exposure intensity based on the results of measurements taken during the app...
Sudarmadji; Pudjiastuti, Hermin
Telaga Warna and Telaga Pengilon are two volcanic lakes in the Dieng Plateau offer some unique phenomena which are interested for tourists to visit. Telaga Warna and Telaga Pengilon are located side by side in the Dieng Palteau. Those two lakes also have specific ecosystem which differ to other lakes. However as land use in the surrounding area is now gradually changing, the lake is now facing to environmental degradation. The land use in the surrounding area is for intensive agricultural which main crops are vegetable, especially potatoes. Meanwhile, the number of tourist visiting those two lakes is increasing; it may also give some impact to the lake environment. This research aims to study the impacts of agricultural practices and tourism activities to the lake environmental which lead to the environment sustainability of the lakes. The field survey was conducted to collect some data on lakes characteristics, agricultural and tourism activities. Some interviews to local people and tourists were also conducted. Some water and sediment samples were collected followed by laboratory analyses. Some secondary data from previous study was also collected. Data analysis was conducted based on qualitative and quantitative techniques. The study found that agricultural practices of potatoes plantation uses water from the Telaga Pengilon to irrigate the plant by pumping out the water using water pump and distributes the water over the plantation area. Agricultural practices lead to soil erosion, which contribute sediment to the lake carried by surface runoff. Therefore, the volume of lakes is gradually decreasing. The use of fertilizer in the agricultural practice contribute nutrient into the lake carried by surface runoff, leading to the eutrophication, due to the excess used of fertilizer. The study concludes that agricultural practices and tourism activities have some positive economic impacts to the local community, however it also give some adverse affects on the lakes
Barber, Nicholas A; Kiers, E Toby; Theis, Nina; Hazzard, Ruth V; Adler, Lynn S
Agricultural management has profound effects on soil communities. Activities such as fertilizer inputs can modify the composition of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) communities, which form important symbioses with the roots of most crop plants. Intensive conventional agricultural management may select for less mutualistic AMF with reduced benefits to host plants compared to organic management, but these differences are poorly understood. AMF are generally evaluated based on their direct growth effects on plants. However, mycorrhizal colonization also may alter plant traits such as tissue nutrients, defensive chemistry, or floral traits, which mediate important plant-insect interactions like herbivory and pollination. To determine the effect of AMF from different farming practices on plant performance and traits that putatively mediate species interactions, we performed a greenhouse study by inoculating Cucumis sativus (cucumber, Cucurbitaceae) with AMF from conventional farms, organic farms, and a commercial AMF inoculum. We measured growth and a suite of plant traits hypothesized to be important predictors of herbivore resistance and pollinator attraction. Several leaf and root traits and flower production were significantly affected by AMF inoculum. Both conventional and organic AMF reduced leaf P content but increased Na content compared to control and commercial AMF. Leaf defenses were unaffected by AMF treatments, but conventional AMF increased root cucurbitacin C, the primary defensive chemical of C. sativus, compared to organic AMF. These effects may have important consequences for herbivore preference and population dynamics. AMF from both organic and conventional farms decreased flower production relative to commercial and control treatments, which may reduce pollinator attraction and plant reproduction. AMF from both farm types also reduced seed germination, but effects on plant growth were limited. Our results suggest that studies only considering AMF
Thomas M. Williams; Charles Gresham
This report is on the fifth year results of a cooperative research project to examine water quality impacts of maximizing plantation growth on abandoned agricultural land, first reported after two years in the Ninth Southern Silvicultural Research Conference. The study, located on International Paper's Southland Experimental Forest at Bainbridge GA, examines...
Sprague, Lori A.; Gronberg, Jo Ann M.
Relations between riverine export (load) of total nitrogen (N) and total phosphorus (P) from 133 large agricultural watersheds in the United States and factors affecting nutrient transport were evaluated using empirical regression models. After controlling for anthropogenic inputs and other landscape factors affecting nutrient transport-such as runoff, precipitation, slope, number of reservoirs, irrigated area, and area with subsurface tile drains-the relations between export and the area in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) (N) and conservation tillage (P) were positive. Additional interaction terms indicated that the relations between export and the area in conservation tillage (N) and the CRP (P) progressed from being clearly positive when soil erodibility was low or moderate, to being close to zero when soil erodibility was higher, to possibly being slightly negative only at the 90th to 95th percentile of soil erodibility values. Possible explanations for the increase in nutrient export with increased area in management practices include greater transport of soluble nutrients from areas in conservation tillage; lagged response of stream quality to implementation of management practices because of nitrogen transport in groundwater, time for vegetative cover to mature, and/or prior accumulation of P in soils; or limitations in the management practice and stream monitoring data sets. If lags are occurring, current nutrient export from agricultural watersheds may still be reflecting the influence of agricultural land-use practices that were in place before the implementation of these management practices.
Human use of the landscape for crop production can degrade ecosystem services. A number of agricultural conservation practices are touted as mitigating these impacts. Many of these practices are encouraged by incentive programs such as the Conservation Reserve Program administere...
Rudolphi, Josie M; Campo, Shelly; Gerr, Fred; Rohlman, Diane S
Tractor-related incidents are the leading cause of agricultural-related fatalities in the United States. Injuries from rollovers can be prevented by equipping tractors with rollover protective structures (ROPS, an engineering approach) and by using seatbelts (a behavior-based approach). While adult farmers report low seatbelt use and frequent use of tractors without ROPS, it is unknown whether the young adult population has adopted similar tractor driving practices. This study was designed to identify tractor operating practices among young adult agricultural workers and the influence of supervisors, peers, and parents on their safety behaviors. An online survey was conducted among college students enrolled in agricultural science classes in four Midwestern colleges and universities. Participants answered questions about their tractor operating practices, the influence of supervisors, peers, parents, and individual risk taking tendencies on their workplace practices. A tractor operation safety score was estimated from participants' responses. Linear regression was used to examine the association of these influences and the tractor operation safety score. Of the 193 respondents, most (78.8%) reported that they never or rarely wear a seatbelt when operating a tractor with a ROPS. Supervisory influences, such as being negatively evaluated by a supervisor, were found to be more strongly associated with tractor operating behaviors than peer or parent influence. Young adult agricultural workers frequently reported unsafe tractor operating behaviors. Supervisors were found to have the most influence over reported behaviors of young adult agricultural workers. Copyright © 2017 The Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kuhn, Nikolaus J.; Talamondjila Naanda, Martha; Bloemertz, Lena
Agriculture is a backbone for many African economies, with an estimated 70% of Africans active in agricultural production. The sector often does not only directly contribute to, but sustains food security and poverty reduction efforts. Sustaining this productivity poses many challenges, particularly to small scale subsistence farmers (SSF) in dry land areas and semi-arid countries like Namibia. SSF in northern central Namibia mix crop and livestock production on degraded semi-arid lands and nutrient-poor sandy soils. They are fully dependent on agricultural production with limited alternative sources of income. Mostly, their agricultural harvests and outputs are low, not meeting their livelihood needs. At the same time, the land use is often not sustainable, leading to degradation. The Namibia case reveals that addressing underlying economic, social and environmental challenges requires a combination of farm level-soil management practices with a shift towards integrated landscape management. This forms the basis for SSF to adopt sustainable land management practices while building institutional foundations, like establishing SSF cooperatives. One way in which this has been tested is through the concept of incentive-based motivation, i.e. payment for ecosystem services (PES), in which some of the beneficiaries pay, for instance for farmers or land users, who provide the services. The farmers provide these services by substituting their unsustainable land and soil management and adopting new (climate smart agricultural) land use practices. Climate Smart Agricultural land use practices (CSA-LUP) are one way of providing ecosystem services, which could be fundamental to long-term sustainable soil and land management solutions in Africa. There are few PES cases which have been systematically studied from an institutional development structure perspective. This study presents lessons evolving from the notion that direct participation and involvement of local people
Plaza-Bolaños, Patricia; Padilla-Sánchez, Juan Antonio; Garrido-Frenich, Antonia; Romero-González, Roberto; Martínez-Vidal, José Luis
A comprehensive survey of the occurrence and fate of pesticides and organic contaminants in soils from an intensive agricultural area devoted to horticultural production in plastic-based greenhouses has been performed to determine if the operation under integrated pest management practices has contributed to reduce the levels of these compounds. Almería province (south-eastern Spain) was selected for the case study. 38 agricultural soil samples (each sample corresponds to an independent private greenhouse) of areas working under integrated pest management (IPM) programs have been analyzed in order to evaluate their contamination fate. Sampling was designed to cover an area of about 400 km(2). Pesticides, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), phenolic compounds and di-(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP) were monitored. The obtained results were compared to other studies reported in Spain and Europe. Among relevant persistent pesticides, DDTs and endosulfans were mainly found and the results indicated historical application, although recent application of endosulfan was rarely detected. PAHs were also found but to a lesser extent and derived from pyrogenic sources. DEHP levels were considerably higher in comparison to the other monitored analytes. The evaluation revealed that despite the use of IPM programs, pesticide and organic contaminants are still being detected in this type of agricultural soil, although at relatively low concentration levels. In general, the contamination rate was similar or lower in comparison to other agricultural areas from nearby regions or countries. However, further monitoring studies should be carried out to establish the possible reduction in contamination by the selected compounds.
Pratibha, G.; Srinivas, I.; Rao, K. V.; Shanker, Arun K.; Raju, B. M. K.; Choudhary, Deepak K.; Srinivas Rao, K.; Srinivasarao, Ch.; Maheswari, M.
Agriculture has been considered as one of the contributors to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and it continues to increase with increase in crop production. Hence development of sustainable agro techniques with maximum crop production, and low global warming potential is need of the hour. Quantifying net global warming potential (NGWP) and greenhouse gas intensity (GHGI) of an agricultural activity is a method to assess the mitigation potential of the activity. But there is dearth of information on NGWP of conservation agriculture under rainfed conditions. Hence in this study two methods such as crop based (NGWPcrop) and soil based (NGWPsoil) were estimated from the data of the experiment initiated in 2009 in rainfed semiarid regions of Hyderabad, India with different tillage practices like conventional tillage (CT), reduced tillage (RT), zero tillage (ZT) and residue retention levels by harvesting at different heights which includes 0, 10 and 30 cm anchored residue in pigeonpea-castor systems. The results of the study revealed that under rainfed conditions CT recorded 24% higher yields over ZT, but CT and RT were on par with each other. However, the yield gap between the tillage treatments is narrowing down over 5 years of study. ZT and RT recorded 26 and 11% lower indirect GHG emissions (emissions from farm operations and input use) over CT, respectively. The percent contribution of CO2 eq. N2O emission is higher to total GHG emissions in both the crops. Both NGWPcrop, NGWPsoil, GHGIcrop, and GHGIsoil based were influenced by tillage and residue treatments. Further, castor grown on pigeonpea residue recorded 20% higher GHG emissions over pigeonpea grown on castor residues. The fuel consumption in ZT was reduced by 58% and 81% as compared to CT in pigeonpea and castor, respectively. Lower NGWP and GHGI based on crop and soil was observed with increase in crop residues and decrease in tillage intensity in both the crops. The results of the study indicate that, there
Patil, S. N.; Baride, M. V.
This paper describes the impact of agricultural activities based on available groundwater regime in Yawal Taluka with special emphasis on groundwater management. The objective is to apprise the planners and administrators for effective agricultural developments. Analysis of 50 years rainfall data shows difference in the recharge of groundwater. The average depth of well has increased by 2.77mbgl, whereas the water table has declined by 9.28m during 1999-2004. Net annual ground water available in 1945 is 11,244.11Ha.m and in 2002 it stands at 10,892.83Ha.m, whereas existing ground water draft is 9164Ha.m. This reflects the utility of ground water for agriculture and other activities. Impact of agricultural development is reflected on quality and quantity of groundwater resources. The five-year progressive data for banana and sugarcane cultivation in area under study reflect that the farmers are exploiting groundwater and often use excessive fertilizers for higher yield. During 2005, the area under cultivation for banana and sugarcane had reduced because of scarcity of water. This shortage of water has lead financially sound farmers to switch over to drip irrigation. This is not practiced by small farmers due to financial constraints. The cropping and land use pattern suggest that there is an increase in agricultural activities to meet the growing demands and the production of cash crops such as banana and sugarcane has also increased. Therefore, an attempt has been made to study the impact of groundwater and agricultural practices in the area.
Cui, Z. L.; Ye, Y. L.; Ma, W. Q.; Chen, X. P.; Zhang, F. S.
Although the concept of producing higher yields with reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is a goal that attracts increasing public and scientific attention, the tradeoff between crop productivity and GHG emissions in intensive agricultural production is not well understood. In this study, we investigated 33 sites of on-farm experiments to evaluate the tradeoff between grain yield and GHG emissions using two systems (conventional practice, CP; high-yielding systems, HY) of intensive irrigation wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) in China. Furthermore, we discussed the potential to produce higher yields with lower GHG emissions based on a survey of 2938 farmers. However, in both the HY and CP systems, wheat grain yield response to GHG emissions fit a linear-plateau model, whereas the curve for grain yield from the HY system was always higher than that from the CP system. Compared to the CP system, grain yield was 44% (2.6 Mg ha-1) higher in the HY system, while GHG emissions increased by only 2.5%, and GHG emission intensity was reduced by 29%. The current intensive irrigation wheat system with farmers' practice had a median yield and maximum GHG emission rate of 6.05 Mg ha-1 and 4783 kg CO2 eq ha-1, respectively; however, this system can be transformed to maintain yields while reducing GHG emissions by 40% (5.96 Mg ha-1, and 2890 kg CO2 eq ha-1). Further, the HY system was found to increase grain yield by 41% with a simultaneous reduction in GHG emissions by 38% (8.55 Mg ha-1, and 2961 kg CO2 eq ha-1, respectively). In the future, we suggest moving the tradeoff relationships and calculations from grain yield and GHG emissions, to new measures of productivity and environmental protection using innovative management technologies. This shift in focus is critical to achieve food and environmental security.
Constanze Buhk; Martin Alt; Manuel J. Steinbauer; Carl Beierkuhnlein; Steve Warren; Anke Jentsch
The prevention of biodiversity loss in agricultural landscapes to protect ecosystem stability and functions is of major importance to stabilize overall diversity. Intense agriculture leads to a loss in species richness and homogenization of species pools, but the processes behind are poorly understood due to a lack of systematic case studies: The specific...
Singh, Manpriet; Dyson, Jeremy; Capri, Ettore
Over the last decades rainfall has become more intense in Sicily, making large proportions of steeply sloping agricultural land more vulnerable to soil erosion, mainly orchards and vineyards (Diodato and Bellocchi 2010). The prevention of soil degradation is indirectly addressed in the European Union's Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC) and Sustainable Use Directive (2009/128/EC). As a consequence, new EU compliance conditions for food producers requires them to have tools and solutions for on-farm implementation of sustainable practices (Singh et al. 2014). The Agricultural Runoff and Best Management Practice Tool has been developed by Syngenta to help farm advisers and managers diagnose the runoff potential from fields with visible signs of soil erosion. The tool consists of 4 steps including the assessment of three key landscape factors (slope, topsoil permeability and depth to restrictive horizon) and 9 mainly soil and crop management factors influencing the runoff potential. Based on the runoff potential score (ranging from 0 to 10), which is linked to a runoff potential class, the Runoff Tool uses in-field and edge-of-the-field Best Management Practices (BMPs) to mitigate runoff (aligned with advice from ECPA's TOPPS-prowadis project). The Runoff tool needs testing in different regions and crops to create a number of use scenarios with regional/crop specific advice on BMPs. For this purpose the Tool has been tested in vineyards of the Tasca d'Almerita and Planeta wineries, which are large family-owned estates with long-standing tradition in viticulture in Sicily. In addition to runoff potential scores, Visual Soil Assessment (VSA) scores have been calculated to allow for a comparison between different diagnostic tools. VSA allows for immediate diagnosis of soil quality (a higher score means a better soil quality) including many indicators of runoff (Shepherd 2008). Runoff potentials were moderate to high in all tested fields. Slopes were classified as
Kreiling, Rebecca M.; Thoms, Martin C.; Richardson, William B.
Despite much research and investment into understanding and managing nutrients across agricultural landscapes, nutrient runoff to freshwater ecosystems is still a major concern. We argue there is currently a disconnect between the management of watershed surfaces (agricultural landscape) and river networks (riverine landscape). These landscapes are commonly managed separately, but there is limited cohesiveness between agricultural landscape-focused research and river science, despite similar end goals. Interdisciplinary research into stream networks that drain agricultural landscapes is expanding but is fraught with problems. Conceptual frameworks are useful tools to order phenomena, reveal patterns and processes, and in interdisciplinary river science, enable the joining of multiple areas of understanding into a single conceptual–empirical structure. We present a framework for the interdisciplinary study and management of agricultural and riverine landscapes. The framework includes components of an ecosystems approach to the study of catchment–stream networks, resilience thinking, and strategic adaptive management. Application of the framework is illustrated through a study of the Fox Basin in Wisconsin, USA. To fully realize the goal of nutrient reduction in the basin, we suggest that greater emphasis is needed on where best management practices (BMPs) are used within the spatial context of the combined watershed–stream network system, including BMPs within the river channel. Targeted placement of BMPs throughout the riverine landscape would increase the overall buffering capacity of the system to nutrient runoff and thus its resilience to current and future disturbances.
Sarkar, Atanu; Aronson, Kristan J; Patil, Shantagouda; Hugar, Lingappa B; vanLoon, Gary W
In order to enhance food production, India has adopted modern agriculture practices and achieved noteworthy success. This achievement was essentially the result of a paradigm shift in agriculture that included high inputs of agrochemicals, water, and widespread practice of monoculture, as well as bureaucratic changes that promoted these changes. There are very few comprehensive analyses of potential adverse health outcomes that may be related to these changes. The objective of this study is to identify health risks associated with modern agricultural practices in the southern Indian state of Karnataka. This study aims to compare high-input and low-input agricultural practices and the consequences for health of people in these communities. The fieldwork was conducted from May to August, 2009 and included a survey carried out in six villages. Data were collected by in-depth personal interviews among 240 households and key informants, field observations, laboratory analyses, and data from secondary sources. The study identified four major visible impacts: occupational hazards, vector borne diseases, changing nutritional status, and inequity in development. In the high-input area, mechanization has resulted in more occurrences of serious accidents and injuries. Ecological changes due to rice cultivation in this area have further augmented mosquito breeding, and there has been a surge in the incidence of Japanese encephalitis and malaria. The traditional coarse cereals (complex carbohydrates, high protein) have been replaced by mill-polished rice (simple carbohydrate, low protein). The prevalence of overweight (BMI>25) has emerged as a new public health challenge, and this is most evident in large-landholding households, especially in the high-input agriculture areas. In all agro-ecological areas, it was observed that women faced a greater risk of both extremes of under-nutrition and being overweight. Output-driven and market-oriented modern agricultural practices have
Diaz-Guzman, Enrique; Sanchez, Juan; Arroliga, Alejandro C
During the last 5 years, new randomized trials in critically ill patients have challenged a number of traditional treatment strategies in intensive care. The authors review eight studies that helped change their medical practices.
Oreszczyn, Sue; Lane, Andy; Carr, Susan
Drawing on the UK research project, "Farmers' understandings of GM crops within local communities", this paper considers the application of the concepts of communities of practice and networks of practice in the agricultural context. A brief review of theories about communities of practice and networks of practice is given and some of…
Halstensen, Anne Straumfors; Nordby, Karl-Christian; Elen, Oleif; Eduard, Wijnand
Ochratoxin A (OTA) is a nephrotoxin frequently contaminating grains. OTA inhalation during grain handling may therefore represent a health risk to farmers, and was the subject of this study. Airborne and settled grain dust was collected during grain work on 84 Norwegian farms. Climate and agricultural practices on each farm were registered. Penicillium spp., Aspergillus spp. and OTA in settled dust were measured. Settled dust contained median 4 microg OTA/kg dust (range 2-128), correlating with Penicillium spp. (median 40 cfu/mg; range 0-32000, rs =0.33; p < 0.01). Similar levels were found across grain species, districts and agricultural practices. Penicillium levels, but not OTA levels, were higher in storage than in threshing dust (p=0.003), and increased with storage time (rs =0.51, p < 0.001). Farmers were exposed to median 1 mg/m3 (range 0.2-15) dust during threshing and median 7 mg/m3 (range 1-110) dust during storage work, equalling median 3.7 pg/m3 (range 0.6-200) and median 40 pg/m3 (range 2-14000) OTA, respectively (p < 0.001). Agricultural practices could not predict OTA, Penicillium or Aspergillus contamination. Compared to oral intake of OTA, the inhalant exposure during grain work was low, although varying by more than 1,000-fold. However, the farmers may occasionally be highly exposed, particularly during handling of stored grain.
Information on air emissions from agricultural practices, types of agricultural burning, air programs that may apply to agriculture, reporting requirements, and links to state and other federal air-quality information.
Xia, L.; Robock, A.
Crop yields are sensitive to both agricultural practice and climate changes. Under different agricultural practice scenarios, crop yield may have different climate sensitivities. Since it is important to understand how future climate changes affect agriculture productivity and what the potential adaptation strategies would be to compensate for possible negative impacts on crop production, we performed experiments to study climate sensitivity under different agricultural practice scenarios for rice, maize and wheat in the top four production provinces in China using the Decision Support System for Agrotechnology Transfer (DSSAT) crop model. The agricultural practice scenarios include four categories: different amounts of nitrogen fertilizer or no nitrogen stress; irrigation turned on or off, or no water stress; all possible seeds in the DSSAT cultivar data base; and different planting dates. For the climate sensitivity test, the control climate is from 1998 to 2007, and we individually modify four climate variables: daily maximum and minimum temperature by +2 °C and -2 °C, daily precipitation by +20% and -20%, and daily solar radiation by + 20% and -20%. With more nitrogen fertilizer applied, crops are more sensitive to temperature changes as well as precipitation changes because of their release from nitrogen limitation. With irrigation turned on, crop yield sensitivity to temperature decreases in most of the regions depending on the amount of the local precipitation, since more water is available and soil temperature varies less with higher soil moisture. Those results indicate that there could be possible agriculture adaptation strategies under certain future climate scenarios. For example, increasing nitrogen fertilizer usage by a certain amount might compensate for the negative impact on crop yield from climate changes. However, since crops are more sensitive to climate changes when there is more nitrogen fertilizer applied, if the climate changes are
Rasoulzadeh Gharibdousti, S.; Kharel, G.; Stoecker, A.; Storm, D.
One of the main causes of water quality impairment in the United States is human induced Non-Point Source (NPS) pollution through intensive agriculture. Fort Cobb Reservoir (FCR) watershed located in west-central Oklahoma, United States is a rural agricultural catchment with known issues of NPS pollution including suspended solids, siltation, nutrients, and pesticides. The FCR watershed with an area of 813 km2 includes one major lake fed by four tributaries. Recently, several Best Management Practices (BMPs) have been implemented in the watershed (such as no-tillage and cropland to grassland conversion) to improve water quality. In this study we aim to estimate the effectiveness of different BMPs in improving watershed health under future climate projections. We employed the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) to develop the hydrological model of the FCR watershed. The watershed was delineated using the 10 m USGS Digital Elevation Model and divided into 43 sub-basins with an average area of 8 km2 (min. 0.2 km2 - max. 28 km2). Through a combination of Soil Survey Geographic Database- SSURGO soil data, the US Department of Agriculture crop layer and the slope information, the watershed was further divided into 1,217 hydrologic response units. The historical climate pattern in the watershed was represented by two different weather stations. The model was calibrated (1991 - 2000) and validated (2001 - 2010) against the monthly USGS observations of streamflow recorded at the watershed outlet using three statistical matrices: coefficient of determination (R2), Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency (NS) and percentage bias (PB). Model parametrization resulted into satisfactory values of R2 (0.56) and NS (0.56) in calibration period and an excellent model performance (R2 = 0.75; NS = 0.75; PB = <1) in validation period. We have selected 19 BMPs to estimate their efficacy in terms of water and sediment yields under a combination of three Coupled Model Intercomparison Project-5 Global
Schmid, Erwin; Sinabell, Franz
The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) was fundamentally reformed in 2003. From 2005, farmers will receive decoupled income support payments instead of production premiums if basic standards for environment, food safety, animal health and welfare are met. Farmers are likely to adjust production and management practices to the new policy framework. We describe how this reform fits into the EU strategy of making agricultural production more environmentally friendly by concentrating on the financial aspects of the reforms. Using an agricultural sector model for Austria, we show that the reform will further decrease agricultural outputs, reduce farm inputs, lessen nitrogen surpluses and make environmentally friendly management practices more attractive for farmers.
Nadeu, Elisabet; Van Wesemael, Bas; Van Oost, Kristof
Over the last decades, an increasing number of studies have been conducted to assess the effect of soil management practices on soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks. At regional scales, biogeochemical models such as CENTURY or Roth-C have been commonly applied. These models simulate SOC dynamics at the profile level (point basis) over long temporal scales but do not consider the continuous lateral transfer of sediment that takes place along geomorphic toposequences. As a consequence, the impact of soil redistribution on carbon fluxes is very seldom taken into account when evaluating changes in SOC stocks due to agricultural management practices on the short and long-term. To address this gap, we assessed the role of soil erosion by water and tillage on SOC stocks under different agricultural management practices in the Walloon region of Belgium. The SPEROS-C model was run for a 100-year period combining three typical crop rotations (using winter wheat, winter barley, sugar beet and maize) with three tillage scenarios (conventional tillage, reduced tillage and reduced tillage in combination with additional crop residues). The results showed that including soil erosion by water in the simulations led to a general decrease in SOC stocks relative to a baseline scenario (where no erosion took place). The SOC lost from these arable soils was mainly exported to adjacent sites and to the river system by lateral fluxes, with magnitudes differing between crop rotations and in all cases lower under conservation tillage practices than under conventional tillage. Although tillage erosion plays an important role in carbon redistribution within fields, lateral fluxes induced by water erosion led to a higher spatial and in-depth heterogeneity of SOC stocks with potential effects on the soil water holding capacity and crop yields. This indicates that studies assessing the effect of agricultural management practices on SOC stocks and other soil properties over the landscape should
Borriello, R.; Lumini, E.; Bonfante, P.; Bianciotto, V.
Symbiotic associations between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and plant roots are widespread in natural environments and provide a range of benefits to the host plant. These include improved nutrition, enhanced resistance to soil-borne pests, diseases, and drought, as well as tolerance to heavy metals. In addition, the presence of a well developed AMF hyphal network improve the soil structure. As obligate mutualistic symbionts these fungi colonize the roots of many agricultural crops and it is often claimed that agricultural practices (use of fertilizers and biocides, tillage, dominance of monocultures and the growing of non-mycorrhizal crops) are detrimental to AMF. As a result, agro ecosystems impoverished in AMF may not get the fully expected range of benefits from these fungi. Using molecular markers on DNA extracted directly from soil and roots we studied the effects of different management practices (tillage and nitrogen fertilization) on the AMF populations colonizing an experimental agro ecosystem in Central Italy. Fungi in roots and soil were identified by cloning and sequencing a region of ~550bp of the 18S rDNA and ~600bp of the 28S rDNA. In symbiosis with the maize roots we detected only members of Glomeraceae group A that showed decrement in number under nitrogen fertilization. Instead in soil were mainly present members of two AMF groups, respectively Gigasporaceae and Glomeraceae group A. In addition only the low input management practices preserve also members of Diversisporaceae and Glomeraceae group B. From our study we can conclude that agricultural practices can directly or indirectly influence AMF biodiversity. The result of this study highlight the importance and significant effects of the long term nitrogen fertilization and tillage practices on specific groups of fungi playing a key role in arable soils. The research was founded by Biodiversity Project (IPP-CNR) and by SOILSINK (FISR-MIUR)
Crill, P. M.; Keller, M.; Weitz, A.; Grauel, B.; Veldkamp, E.
The amount of nitrous oxide (N2O) continues to increase in the atmosphere. Agricultural use of nitrogen fertilizers in the tropics is thought to be an important source of atmospheric N2O. High frequency, highly precise measurements of the N2O flux were made with an automated system deployed in N fertilized and unfertilized agricultural plots of papaya and corn in Costa Rica for an entire corn crop growth to harvest cycle. N2O fluxes were as high as 64 ng N-N2O cm-2 h-1 from fertilized versus 12 ng N-N2O cm-2 h-1 from unfertilized corn and 28 ng N-N2O cm-2 h-1 from fertilized versus 4.6 ng N-N2O cm-2 h-1 from unfertilized papaya. Fertilized corn released more N2O than fertilized papaya over the 125 days of the crop cycle, 1.83 kg N ha-1 versus 1.37 kg N ha-1. This represents a loss as N2O of 1.1 and 0.9% of the total N applied as ammonium nitrate to the corn and papaya, respectively. As has often been observed, N2O fluxes were highly variable. The fastest rates of emission were associated with fertilization and high soil moisture. A diurnal cycle in the fluxes was not evident probably due to the minimal day/night temperature fluctuations. Each chamber was measured between 509 and 523 times over the course of the experiment. This allows us to evaluate the effect on constructed mean fluxes of lowered sampling frequencies. Sampling each collar about once a day throughout the crop cycle (25% of the data set) could result in a calculated mean flux from any individual chamber that can vary by as much as 20% even though the calculated mean would probably be within 10% of the mean of the complete data set. The uncertainty increases very rapidly at lower sampling frequencies. For example, if only 10% of the data set were used which would be the equivalent of sampling every other day, a very high sampling frequency in terms of manual measurements, the calculated mean flux could vary by as much as 40% or more at any given site.
Wagena, Moges B; Easton, Zachary M
Agricultural conservation practices (CPs) are commonly implemented to reduce diffuse nutrient pollution. Climate change can complicate the development, implementation, and efficiency of agricultural CPs by altering hydrology, nutrient cycling, and erosion. This research quantifies the impact of climate change on hydrology, nutrient cycling, erosion, and the effectiveness of agricultural CP in the Susquehanna River Basin in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, USA. We develop, calibrate, and test the Soil and Water Assessment Tool-Variable Source Area (SWAT-VSA) model and select four CPs; buffer strips, strip-cropping, no-till, and tile drainage, to test their effectiveness in reducing climate change impacts on water quality. We force the model with six downscaled global climate models (GCMs) for a historic period (1990-2014) and two future scenario periods (2041-2065 and 2075-2099) and quantify the impact of climate change on hydrology, nitrate-N (NO 3 -N), total N (TN), dissolved phosphorus (DP), total phosphorus (TP), and sediment export with and without CPs. We also test prioritizing CP installation on the 30% of agricultural lands that generate the most runoff (e.g., critical source areas-CSAs). Compared against the historical baseline and with no CPs, the ensemble model predictions indicate that climate change results in annual increases in flow (4.5±7.3%), surface runoff (3.5±6.1%), sediment export (28.5±18.2%) and TN export (9.5±5.1%), but decreases in NO 3 -N (12±12.8%), DP (14±11.5), and TP (2.5±7.4%) export. When agricultural CPs are simulated most do not appreciably change the water balance, however, tile drainage and strip-cropping decrease surface runoff, sediment export, and DP/TP, while buffer strips reduce N export. Installing CPs on CSAs results in nearly the same level of performance for most practices and most pollutants. These results suggest that climate change will influence the performance of agricultural CPs and that targeting agricultural
Pérez-López, Antonio José; López-Nicolas, José Manuel; Núñez-Delicado, Estrella; Del Amor, Francisco M; Carbonell-Barrachina, Angel A
Consumers demand organic products because they believe they are more flavorful and respectful to the environment and human health. The effects of conventional, integrated, and organic farming, grown in a controlled greenhouse, on color, minerals, and carotenoids of sweet pepper fruits ( Capsicum annuum), cv. Almuden, were studied. Experimental results proved that organic farming provided peppers with the highest (a) intensities of red and yellow colors, (b) contents of minerals, and (c) total carotenoids. Integrated fruits presented intermediate values of the quality parameters under study, and conventional fruits were those with the lowest values of minerals, carotenoids, and color intensity. As an example, the concentrations of total carotenoids were 3231, 2493, and 1829 mg kg (-1) for organic, integrated, and conventional sweet peppers, respectively. Finally, organic red peppers could be considered as those having the highest antioxidant activity of all studied peppers (agricultural farming and development stage).
Leitão, Sara; José Cerejeira, Maria; Abreu, Manuela; Sousa, José Paulo
Sustainable agricultural production relies on soil communities as the main actors in key soil processes necessary to maintain sustainable soil functioning. Soil biodiversity influences soil physical and chemical characteristics and thus the sustainability of crop and agro-ecosystems functioning. Agricultural practices (e.g.: soil tillage, pesticides and fertilizer applications, irrigation) may affects negatively or positively soil biodiversity and abundances by modifying the relationships between organisms in the soil ecosystem. The present study aimed to study the influence of agricultural practices of three crops (potato, onion and maize) under Mediterranean climate conditions on soil macro- and mesofauna during their entire crop cycles. Effects on soil communities were assessed at a higher tier of environmental risk assessment comprising field testing of indigenous edaphic communities in a selected study-site located in a major agriculture region of Central Portugal, Ribatejo e Oeste, neighbouring protected wetlands. A reference site near the agricultural field site was selected as a Control site to compare the terrestrial communities' composition and variation along the crop cycle. The field soil and Control site soil are sandy loam soils. Crops irrigation was performed by center-pivot (automated sprinkler that rotates in a half a circle area) and by sprinklers. Soil macro- and mesofauna were collected at both sites (field and Control) using two methodologies through pitfall trapping and soil sampling. The community of soil macro- and mesofauna of the three crops field varied versus control site along the crops cycles. Main differences were due to arachnids, coleopterans, ants and adult Diptera presence and abundance. The feeding activity of soil fauna between control site and crop areas varied only for potato and onion crops vs. control site but not among crops. Concentration of pesticides residues in soil did not cause apparent negative effects on the soil
Pavilonis, Brian T.; Anthony, T. Renee; O’Shaughnessy, Patrick T.; Humann, Michael J.; Merchant, James A.; Moore, Genna; Thorne, Peter S.; Weisel, Clifford P.; Sanderson, Wayne T.
The objectives of this study were to characterize rural populations’ indoor and outdoor exposure to PM10, PM2.5, and endotoxin and identify factors that influence these concentrations. Samples were collected at 197 rural households over five continuous days between 2007 and 2011. Geometric mean indoor PM10 (21.2 μg m−3) and PM2.5 (12.2 μg m−3) concentrations tended to be larger than outdoor PM10 (19.6 μg m−3) and PM2.5 (8.2 μg m−3) concentrations (PM10 p= 0.086; PM2.5 p <0.001). Conversely, GM outdoor endotoxin concentrations (1.93 EU m−3) were significantly larger than indoor (0.32 EU m−3) (p<0.001). Compared to measurements from previous urban studies, indoor and outdoor concentrations of PM10 and PM2.5 in the study area tended to be smaller while, ambient endotoxin concentrations measured outside rural households were 3-10 times larger. Contrary to our initial hypothesis, seasonality did not have a significant effect on mean ambient PM10 concentrations; however, endotoxin concentrations in the autumn were almost seven-times larger than winter. Excluding home cleanliness, the majority of agricultural and housing characteristics evaluated were found to be poorly associated with indoor and outdoor particulate and endotoxin concentrations. PMID:23321860
Misyak, Sarah; Ledlie Johnson, Meredith; McFerren, Mary; Serrano, Elena
To explore Family Nutrition Program assistants' perception of farmers' markets and alternative agricultural practices for themselves and their clients. Cross-section design, survey of Virginia Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (NEP) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program-Education Family Nutrition Program assistants (n = 52) working with limited-resource populations. Twenty-one percent to 55% of FNP assistants valued alternative agricultural practices, and only 5% to 8% of FNP assistants perceived that their clients did so. Benefits to shopping at farmers' markets included supporting local economies, and food price, quality, and safety. Barriers included lack of transportation, location/convenience, hours, and food prices. Assistants rated the benefits to shopping at farmers' markets similarly for themselves and their clients, but rated many of the barriers to shopping at farmers' markets as significantly lower (P < .05) for themselves than for their clients. Future assistant trainings should address the connection between agriculture and health, and how to overcome barriers to shopping at farmers' markets for their clients. Copyright © 2014 Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Procházková, Petra; Chuchma, Filip; Středa, Tomáš
The aim of this work was the evaluation of drought severity development in the Czech Republic for the period 1971-2015 by the means of the Effective Drought Index (EDI). Annual values of the EDI index were determined using the method of effective precipitation for 14 localities spread throughout the Czech Republic (Central Europe). The seven categories were created according to obtained index values for the drought conditions determination for years during the period 1971-2015 through the percentile method. The annual index values were compared with acquired 2nd, 15th, 45th, 55th, 85th and 98th percentiles. Both the years with precipitation unfavourable conditions: 1972, 1973, 1984, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993 and 2015 and the years with precipitation favourable conditions: 1977, 1987, 1995, 2001, 2002 and 2010 were determined. Precipitation conditions in the growing season from 61st to 180th day of the year were also analysed. This evaluation was conducted during the period 1971-2015 through the ten-day index values which were compared with acquired 2nd, 15th, 45th, 55th, 85th and 98th percentiles. Dry growing seasons occurred in 1973, 1974, 1976 and 1993. Wet growing seasons occurred in 1987, 2006 and 2010. Trend analysis of annual index values was performed through the Mann-Kendall test. Highly statistically significant increasing linear trends (P < 0.01) were found for four localities (Uherský Ostroh, Vysoká, Znojmo-Oblekovice and Žatec); statistically significant increasing trends (P < 0.05) were found for three localities (Brno-Chrlice, Lednice and Lípa). Based on the extrapolation of the trend, a slightly higher effective precipitation can be expected during the year in a substantial part of the country. However, these findings do not necessarily mean an optimal supply of agricultural land with water. Precipitation exhibits considerable unevenness of distribution through time. Given the increasing evapotranspiration demands of the environment their
Bruemmer, C.; Richter, U.; Schrader, F.; Hurkuck, M.; Kutsch, W. L.
Mid-latitude peatlands are often exposed to high atmospheric nitrogen deposition when located in close vicinity to agricultural land. As the impacts of altered deposition rates on nitrogen-limited ecosystems are poorly understood, we investigated the surface-atmosphere exchange of several nitrogen and carbon compounds using multiple high-resolution measurement techniques and modeling. Our study site was a protected semi-natural bog ecosystem. Local wind regime and land use in the adjacent area clearly regulated whether total reactive nitrogen (∑Nr) concentrations were ammonia (NH3) or NOx-dominated. Eddy-covariance measurements of NH3 and ∑Nr revealed concentration, temperature and surface wetness-dependent deposition rates. Intermittent periods of NH3 and ∑Nr emission likely attributed to surface water re-emission and soil efflux, respectively, were found, thereby indicating nitrogen oversaturation in this originally N-limited ecosystem. Annual dry plus wet deposition resulted in 20 to 25 kg N ha-1 depending on method and model used, which translated into a four- to fivefold exceedance of the ecosystem-specific critical load. As the bog site had likely been exposed to the observed atmospheric nitrogen burden over several decades, a shift in grass species' composition towards a higher number of nitrophilous plants was already visible. Three years of CO2 eddy flux measurements showed that the site was a small net sink in the range of 33 to 268 g CO2 m-2 yr-1. Methane emissions of 32 g CO2-eq were found to partly offset the sequestered carbon through CO2. Our study demonstrates the applicability of novel micrometeorological measurement techniques in biogeochemical sciences and stresses the importance of monitoring long-term changes in vulnerable ecosystems under anthropogenic pressure and climate change.
Auer, Agathe; Vande Burgt, Nathan H; Abram, Florence; Barry, Gerald; Fenton, Owen; Markey, Bryan K; Nolan, Stephen; Richards, Karl; Bolton, Declan; De Waal, Theo; Gordon, Stephen V; O'Flaherty, Vincent; Whyte, Paul; Zintl, Annetta
The process of anaerobic digestion (AD) is valued as a carbon-neutral energy source, while simultaneously treating organic waste, making it safer for disposal or use as a fertilizer on agricultural land. The AD process in many European nations, such as Germany, has grown from use of small, localized digesters to the operation of large-scale treatment facilities, which contribute significantly to national renewable energy quotas. However, these large AD plants are costly to run and demand intensive farming of energy crops for feedstock. Current policy in Germany has transitioned to support funding for smaller digesters, while also limiting the use of energy crops. AD within Ireland, as a new technology, is affected by ambiguous governmental policies concerning waste and energy. A clear governmental strategy supporting on-site AD processing of agricultural waste will significantly reduce Ireland's carbon footprint, improve the safety and bioavailability of agricultural waste, and provide an indigenous renewable energy source. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry.
Field, J.; Adler, P. R.; Evans, S.; Paustian, K.; Marx, E.; Easter, M.
The sustainability of biofuel expansion is strongly dependent on the environmental footprint of feedstock production, including both direct impacts within feedstock-producing areas and potential leakage effects due to disruption of existing food, feed, or fiber production. Assessing and minimizing these impacts requires novel methods compared to traditional supply chain lifecycle assessment. When properly validated and applied at appropriate spatial resolutions, biogeochemical process models are useful for simulating how the productivity and soil greenhouse gas fluxes of cultivating both conventional crops and advanced feedstock crops respond across gradients of land quality and management intensity. In this work we use the DayCent model to assess the biogeochemical impacts of agricultural residue collection, establishment of perennial grasses on marginal cropland or conservation easements, and intensification of existing cropping at high spatial resolution across several real-world case study landscapes in diverse US agricultural regions. We integrate the resulting estimates of productivity, soil carbon changes, and nitrous oxide emissions with crop production budgets and lifecycle inventories, and perform a basic optimization to generate landscape cost/GHG frontiers and determine the most practical opportunities for low-impact feedstock provisioning. The optimization is constrained to assess the minimum combined impacts of residue collection, land use change, and intensification of existing agriculture necessary for the landscape to supply a commercial-scale biorefinery while maintaining exiting food, feed, and fiber production levels. These techniques can be used to assess how different feedstock provisioning strategies perform on both economic and environmental criteria, and sensitivity of performance to environmental and land use factors. The included figure shows an example feedstock cost-GHG mitigation tradeoff frontier for a commercial-scale cellulosic
Ghiglieri, Giorgio; Barbieri, Giulio; Vernier, Antonio; Carletti, Alberto; Demurtas, Nicola; Pinna, Rosanna; Pittalis, Daniele
SummaryThe paper describes the methodological and innovative approach, which aims to evaluate the potential risk of nitrate pollution in aquifers from agricultural practices by combining intrinsic aquifer vulnerability to contamination, according to the SINTACS R5 method, with agricultural nitrates hazard assessment, according to the IPNOA index. The proposed parametric model adopts a geographically based integrated evaluation system, comprising qualitative and semi-quantitative indicators. In some cases, the authors have modified this model, revising and adjusting scores and weights of the parameter to account for the different environmental conditions, and calibrating accordingly. The method has been successfully implemented and validated in the pilot area of the Alghero coastal plain (northwestern Sardinia, Italy) where aquifers with high productivity are present. The classes with a major score (high potential risk) are in the central part of the plain, in correspondence with the most productive aquifers, where most actual or potential pollution sources are concentrated. These are mainly represented by intensive agricultural activities, by industrial agglomerate and diffused urbanisation. For calibrating the model and optimizing and/or weighting the examined factors, the modelling results were validated by comparison with groundwater quality data, in particular nitrate content, and with the potential pollution sources census data. The parametric method is a popular approach to groundwater vulnerability assessment, in contrast to groundwater flow model and statistical method ones: it is, indeed, relatively inexpensive and straightforward, and use data commonly available or that can be estimated. The zoning of nitrate vulnerable areas provides regional authorities with a useful decision support tool for planning land-use properly managing groundwater and combating and/or mitigating desertification processes. However, a careful validation of the results is
Abdelwahab, Ossama M. M.; Bingner, Ronald L.; Milillo, Fabio; Gentile, Francesco
Soil erosion can lead to severe destruction of agricultural sustainability that affects not only productivity, but the entire ecosystem in the neighboring areas. Sediments transported together with the associated nutrients and chemicals can significantly impact downstream water bodies. Various conservation and management practices implemented individually or integrated together as a system can be used to reduce the negative impacts on agricultural watersheds from soil erosion. Hydrological models are useful tools for decision makers when selecting the most effective combination of management practices to reduce pollutant loads within a watershed system. The Annualized Agricultural Non-point Source (AnnAGNPS) pollutant loading management model can be used to analyze the effectiveness of diverse management and conservation practices that can control or reduce the impact of soil erosion processes and subsequent sediment loads in agricultural watersheds. A 506 km2 Mediterranean medium-size watershed (Carapelle) located in Apulia, Southern Italy was used as a case study to evaluate the model and best management practices (BMPs) for sediment load control. A monitoring station located at the Ordona bridge has been instrumented to continuously monitor stream flow and suspended sediment loads. The station has been equipped with an ultrasound stage meter and a stage recorder to monitor stream flow. An infrared optic probe was used to measure suspended sediment concentrations (Gentile et al., 2010 ). The model was calibrated and validated in the Carapelle watershed on an event basis (Bisantino et al., 2013), and the validated model was used to evaluate the effectiveness of BMPs on sediment reduction. Various management practices were investigated including evaluating the impact on sediment load of: (1) converting all cropland areas into forest and grass covered conditions; (2) converting the highest eroding cropland areas to forest or grass covered conditions; and (3
Diane De Steven; Richard Lowrance
In the eastern U.S. Coastal Plain and Piedmont region, diverse inland wetlands (riverine, depressional, wet flats) have been impacted by or converted to agriculture. Farm Bill conservation practices that restore or enhance wetlands can return their ecological functions and services to the agricultural landscape. We review the extent of regional knowledge regarding the...
Vicas, Simona I; Teusdea, Alin C; Carbunar, Mihai; Socaci, Sonia A; Socaciu, Carmen
The profile of glucosinolates in relation to the antioxidant capacity of five Brassica vegetables (Broccoli, Cauliflower, Kohlrabi, White and Red Cabbage) grown by organic and conventional agricultural practices in Transylvania region-Romania, were determined and compared. The qualitative and quantitative compositions of glucosinolates were determined by HPLC-PDA technique. The antioxidant capacity was comparatively determined by ABTS, DPPH, FRAP and Folin-Ciocalteu assays. The highest glucosinolates levels were found in the Broccoli samples grown under conventional practices (14.24 μmol/g dry weight), glucoraphanin, glucobrassicin and neo-glucobrassicin being the major components. The total glucosinolates content was similar in Kohlrabi and Cauliflower (4.89 and 4.84 μmol/g dry weight, respectively), the indolyl glucosinolates were predominant in Kohlrabi, while the aliphatic derivatives (sinigrin and glucoiberin) were major in Cauliflower. In Cabbage samples, the aliphatic glucosinolates were predominat against indolyl derivatives, glucoraphanin and glucoiberin being the main ones in Red Cabbage. The principal component analysis was applied to discriminate among conventional and organic samples and demonstrated non-overlaps between these two agricultural practices. Meanwhile it was shown that glucosinolates may represent appropriate molecular markers of Brassica vegetables, their antioxidant capacity being higher in organic crops, without significant differences among different Brassica varieties.
Pradhan, Aliza; Idol, Travis; Roul, Pravat K
Traditional agriculture in rainfed uplands of India has been experiencing low agricultural productivity as the lands suffer from poor soil fertility, susceptibility to water erosion and other external pressures of development and climate change. A shift toward more sustainable cropping systems such as conservation agriculture production systems (CAPSs) may help in maintaining soil quality as well as improving crop production and farmer's net economic benefit. This research assessed the effects over 3 years (2011-2014) of reduced tillage, intercropping, and cover cropping practices customized for maize-based production systems in upland areas of Odisha, India. The study focused on crop yield, system productivity and profitability through maize equivalent yield and dominance analysis. Results showed that maize grain yield did not differ significantly over time or among CAPS treatments while cowpea yield was considered as an additional yield in intercropping systems. Mustard and horsegram grown in plots after maize cowpea intercropping recorded higher grain yields of 25 and 37%, respectively, as compared to those without intercropping. Overall, the full CAPS implementation, i.e., minimum tillage, maize-cowpea intercropping and mustard residue retention had significantly higher system productivity and net benefits than traditional farmer practices, i.e., conventional tillage, sole maize cropping, and no mustard residue retention. The dominance analysis demonstrated increasing benefits of combining conservation practices that exceeded thresholds for farmer adoption. Given the use of familiar crops and technologies and the magnitude of yield and income improvements, these types of CAPS should be acceptable and attractive for smallholder farmers in the area. This in turn should support a move toward sustainable intensification of crop production to meet future household income and nutritional needs.
Pradhan, Aliza; Idol, Travis; Roul, Pravat K.
Traditional agriculture in rainfed uplands of India has been experiencing low agricultural productivity as the lands suffer from poor soil fertility, susceptibility to water erosion and other external pressures of development and climate change. A shift toward more sustainable cropping systems such as conservation agriculture production systems (CAPSs) may help in maintaining soil quality as well as improving crop production and farmer’s net economic benefit. This research assessed the effects over 3 years (2011–2014) of reduced tillage, intercropping, and cover cropping practices customized for maize-based production systems in upland areas of Odisha, India. The study focused on crop yield, system productivity and profitability through maize equivalent yield and dominance analysis. Results showed that maize grain yield did not differ significantly over time or among CAPS treatments while cowpea yield was considered as an additional yield in intercropping systems. Mustard and horsegram grown in plots after maize cowpea intercropping recorded higher grain yields of 25 and 37%, respectively, as compared to those without intercropping. Overall, the full CAPS implementation, i.e., minimum tillage, maize–cowpea intercropping and mustard residue retention had significantly higher system productivity and net benefits than traditional farmer practices, i.e., conventional tillage, sole maize cropping, and no mustard residue retention. The dominance analysis demonstrated increasing benefits of combining conservation practices that exceeded thresholds for farmer adoption. Given the use of familiar crops and technologies and the magnitude of yield and income improvements, these types of CAPS should be acceptable and attractive for smallholder farmers in the area. This in turn should support a move toward sustainable intensification of crop production to meet future household income and nutritional needs. PMID:27471508
Chenu, Claire; Cardinael, Rémi; Autret, Bénédicte; Chevallier, Tiphaine; Girardin, Cyril; Mary, Bruno
Increasing the world soils carbon stocks by a factor of 4 per mil annually would compensate the annual net increase of CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. This statement is the core of an initiative launched by the French government at the recent COP21, followed by many countries and international bodies, which attracts political attention to the storage potential of C in soils. Compared to forest and pasture soils, agricultural soils have a higher C storage potential, because they are often characterized by low C contents, and increasing their C content is associated with benefits in terms of soil properties and ecosystem services. Here we quantified, under temperate conditions, the additional C storage related to the implementation of two set of practices that are recognized to be in the framework of agroecology: conservation tillage on the one hand and agroforestry on the other hand. These studies were based on long-term experiments, a 16-years comparison on cropping systems on luvisols in the Paris area and a 18-year-old silvoarable agroforestry trial, on fluvisols in southern France, the main crops being cereals in both cases. C stocks were measured on an equivalent soil mass basis. Both systems allowed for a net storage of C in soils, which are, for the equivalent of the 0-30 cm tilled layer, of 0.55 ± 0.16 t ha- 1 yr- 1 for conservation agriculture (i.e. no tillage with permanent soil coverage with an associated plant, fescue or alfalfa) and of 0.25 ± 0.03 t ha-1 yr-1 for the agroforestry system. These results are in line with estimates proposed in a recent French national assessment concerning the potential of agricultural practices to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Compared to recent literature, they further show that practices that increase C inputs to soil through additional biomass production would be more effective to store C in soil (tree rows, cover crops in conservation agriculture) than practices, such as no-tillage, that are assumed to reduce
Fine, A.; Wilson, C. G.; Papanicolaou, T.; Schaeffer, S. M.
The balance between loss of C to the atmosphere, and the accumulation of soil organic matter is directly controlled by soil microorganisms. A key driver of microbial activity is soil moisture, but it is unclear how microbial C cycling responds to spatiotemporal shifts in hydrological conditions across a heterogeneous, dynamic landscape. We explored the relationship between soil wetness and biogeochemical cycling along landscape positions in two sloping fields of the Intensively Managed Landscape Critical Zone Observatory (IML-CZO) in Iowa, USA. Soils were collected (0-5 cm, 5-10 cm) from four positions (crest, shoulder, backslope, toeslope) along three transects identified as primary flow paths for runoff and sediment. Samples were incubated for 7 days and analyzed pre- and post-incubation for extractable dissolved organic C (DOC), microbial biomass C (MBC), microbial respiration (C-resp), and inorganic N. At both sites, field moisture, MBC, and CUE 0-5 cm increased from summit to toeslope, whereas CUE 5-10 cm decreased. The steeper and drier of the two fields (field 1) showed corresponding increases in C-resp and NO3, but decreases in DOC, moving downslope; the opposite trends were observed in the less erodible, wetter field 2. Comparing the two toeslopes (0-5 cm), field 2 had a larger labile C (DOC + MBC) pool (3.1 mg C g-1 dry soil) than field 1 (2.7 mg g-1 dry soil), but C-resp of field 1 was lower (53 and 42 ug g-1 dry soil for fields 1 and 2, respectively). No differences in MBC between depths were observed in field 1, but in field 2, MBC 5-10 cm (0.6 and 0.7 mg g-1 dry soil at crest and toeslope, respectively) was always less than MBC 0-5 cm (0.9 mg g-1 dry soil). Our findings indicate that wet, poorly drained soil conditions (such as those in lower landscape positions and at depth) decrease microbial activity and allow DOC to accumulate. Despite the relatively enhanced depositional environment of field 1, the low levels of DOC and high C-resp and MBC
Sherriff, Sophie; Rowan, John; Melland, Alice; Jordan, Phil; Fenton, Owen; hUallacháin, Daire Ó.
Soil erosion and sediment loss from land can have a negative impact on the chemical and ecological quality of freshwater resources. In catchments dominated by agriculture, prediction of soil erosion risk is complex due to the interaction of physical characteristics such as topography, soil erodibility, hydrological connectivity and climate. Robust measurement approaches facilitate the assessment of sediment loss magnitudes in relation to a range of agricultural settings. These approaches improve our understanding of critical sediment transfer periods and inform development of evidence-based and cost-effective management strategies. The aim of this study was to i) assess the efficacy of out-of-channel (ex-situ) suspended sediment measurement approaches, ii) to quantify the variability of sediment exported from five river catchments with varying hydrology and agricultural land uses over multiple years and iii) to investigate trends in relation to physical and land use characteristics when sediment data were compared between catchments. Sediment data were collected in five intensive agricultural river catchments in Ireland (3-11 km2) which featured contrasting land uses (predominantly intensive grassland or arable) and soil drainage classes (well, moderate and poor). High-resolution suspended sediment concentration data (SSC - using a calibrated turbidity proxy) were collected ex-situ and combined with in-stream discharge data measured at each catchment outlet to estimate suspended sediment yield (SSY - t km-2 yr-1). In two catchments additional in-stream turbidity monitoring equipment replicated ex-situ measurements including site specific calibration of individual in-stream and ex-situ turbidity probes. Depth-integrated samples were collected to assess the accuracy of both approaches. Method comparison results showed that true SSC values (from depth-integrated sampling) were predominantly within the 95% confidence interval of ex-situ predicted SSC consequently
Fritch, Rochelle A; Sheridan, Helen; Finn, John A; McCormack, Stephen; Ó hUallacháin, Daire
Severe declines in biodiversity have been well documented for many taxonomic groups due to intensification of agricultural practices. Establishment and appropriate management of arable field margins can improve the diversity and abundance of invertebrate groups; however, there is much less research on field margins within grassland systems. Three grassland field margin treatments (fencing off the existing vegetation "fenced"; fencing with rotavation and natural regeneration "rotavated" and; fencing with rotavation and seeding "seeded") were compared to a grazed control in the adjacent intensively managed pasture. Invertebrates were sampled using emergence traps to investigate species breeding and overwintering within the margins. Using a manipulation experiment, we tested whether the removal of grazing pressure and nutrient inputs would increase the abundance and richness of breeding invertebrates within grassland field margins. We also tested whether field margin establishment treatments, with their different vegetation communities, would change the abundance and richness of breeding invertebrates in the field margins. Exclusion of grazing and nutrient inputs led to increased abundance and richness in nearly all invertebrate groups that we sampled. However, there were more complex effects of field margin establishment treatment on the abundance and richness of invertebrate taxa. Each of the three establishment treatments supported a distinct invertebrate community. The removal of grazing from grassland field margins provided a greater range of overwintering/breeding habitat for invertebrates. We demonstrate the capacity of field margin establishment to increase the abundance and richness in nearly all invertebrate groups in study plots that were located on previously more depauperate areas of intensively managed grassland. These results from grassland field margins provide evidence to support practical actions that can inform Greening (Pillar 1) and agri
Guo, Lan-Ping; Zhang, Yan; Zhu, Shou-Dong; Wang, Gui-Hua; Wang, Xiu; Zhang, Xiao-Bo; Chen, Mei-Lan; He, Ya-Li; Han, Bang-Xing; Chen, Nai-Fu; Huang, Lu-Qi
This paper aims to summarize the achievements during the implementation process of good agricultural practice (GAP) in Chinese Materia Medica (CMM), and on basis of analyzing the existing problems of GAP, to propose further implementation of GAP in TCM growing. Since the launch of GAP in CMM growing ten years ago, it has acquired great achievements, including: (1) The promulgation of a series of measures for the administration of the GAP approval in the CMM growing; (2) The expanded planting area of CMM; (3) The increased awareness of standardized CMM growing among farmers and enterprises; (4) The establishment of GAP implementation bases for CMM growing; (5) The improvement of theory and methodology for CMM growing; (6) The development of a large group of experts and scholars in GAP approval for CMM production. The problems existing in the production include: (1) A deep understanding of GAP and its certification is still needed; (2) The distribution of the certification base is not reasonable; (3) The geo-economics effect and the backward farming practices are thought to be the bottlenecks in the standardization of CMM growing and the scale production of CMM; (4) Low comparative effectiveness limits the development of the GAP; (5) The base of breeding improved variety is blank; (6) The immature of the cultivation technique lead to the risk of production process; (7) The degradation of soil microbial and the continuous cropping obstacle restrict the sustainable development of the GAP base. To further promote the health and orderly GAP in the CMM growing, the authors propose: (1) To change the mode of production; (2) To establish a sound standard system so as to ensure quality products for fair prices; (3) To fully consider the geo-economic culture and vigorously promote the definite cultivating of traditional Chinese medicinal materials; (4) To strengthen the transformation and generalization of basic researches and achievements, in order to provide technical
Staveski, Sandra L; Pickler, Rita H; Lin, Li; Shaw, Richard J; Meinzen-Derr, Jareen; Redington, Andrew; Curley, Martha A Q
The purpose of this study was to describe how pediatric cardiac intensive care clinicians assess and manage delirium in patients following cardiac surgery. Descriptive self-report survey. A web-based survey of pediatric cardiac intensive care clinicians who are members of the Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Society. Pediatric cardiac intensive care clinicians (physicians and nurses). None. One-hundred seventy-three clinicians practicing in 71 different institutions located in 13 countries completed the survey. Respondents described their clinical impression of the occurrence of delirium to be approximately 25%. Most respondents (75%) reported that their ICU does not routinely screen for delirium. Over half of the respondents (61%) have never attended a lecture on delirium. The majority of respondents (86%) were not satisfied with current delirium screening, diagnosis, and management practices. Promotion of day/night cycle, exposure to natural light, deintensification of care, sleep hygiene, and reorientation to prevent or manage delirium were among nonpharmacologic interventions reported along with the use of anxiolytic, antipsychotic, and medications for insomnia. Clinicians responding to the survey reported a range of delirium assessment and management practices in postoperative pediatric cardiac surgery patients. Study results highlight the need for improvement in delirium education for pediatric cardiac intensive care clinicians as well as the need for systematic evaluation of current delirium assessment and management practices.
Grady, Julie R.
The purpose of this exploratory qualitative study was to investigate the practice of scientific inquiry in two secondary biology classes and one agriculture class from different schools in different communities. The focus was on teachers' interests and intentions for the students' participation in inquiry, the voices contributing to the inquiry, and students' opportunities to confront their conceptions of the nature of science (NOS). The Partnership for Research and Education in Plants (PREP) served as the context by providing students with opportunities to design and conduct original experiments to help elucidate the function(s) of a disabled gene in Arabidopsis thaliana . Transcripts of teacher and student semi-structured interviews, field notes of classroom observations and classroom conversations, and documents (e.g., student work, teacher handouts, school websites, PREP materials) were analyzed for evidence of the practice of scientific inquiry. Teachers were interested in implementing inquiry because of potential student learning about scientific research and because PREP supports course content and is connected to a larger scientific project outside of the school. Teachers' intentions regarding the implementation of inquiry reflected the complexity of their courses and the students' previous experiences. All inquiries were student-directed. The biology students' participation more closely mirrored the practice of scientists, while the agriculture students were more involved with the procedural display of scientific inquiry. All experiences could have been enhanced from additional knowledge-centered activities regarding scientific reasoning. No activities brought explicit attention to NOS. Biology activities tended to implicitly support NOS while the agriculture class activities tended to implicitly contradict NOS. Scientists' interactions contributed to implied support of the NOS. There were missed opportunities for explicit attention to NOS in all classes
Mierzejewska, Ewa J; Alsarraf, Mohammed; Behnke, Jerzy M; Bajer, Anna
The impact of agricultural practices/ activities on the environment has been falling in many areas of Europe due to the widespread exodus of inhabitants from rural areas. The associated abandonment of agricultural lands has enabled a wide range of wild animals to prosper in the countryside, including birds, ungulates and large carnivores. One consequence has been the increase in ticks and associated tick-borne diseases which now constitute a greater threat for public health than earlier. The aim of the present study was to compare tick densities in different habitats (pasture, meadow, fallow land, post-fire areas) to assess the impact of different agricultural practices on tick densities in vicinities close to human habitation. Between September 2011 and June 2014, 2985 Dermacentor reticulatus ticks were collected by conventional dragging, in the Mazowieckie (Mazovia) and Warmińsko-Mazurskie (Masuria) regions of Poland. In each region, 3 study sites were selected, each situated near surface water sources (i.e., ponds or canals). At each site, three neighboring habitats of surface area 150-600 m(2) were dragged: one on a cattle/horse pasture; the second on meadow; the third on fallow land (abandoned field or meadow), at least twice during each spring and autumn. Additionally, four post-fire areas (one in 2013 and three in 2014) were identified in the Mazowieckie region, and dragging was conducted there in spring and autumn, including in each case a 'control area' comprising intact unburned fallow land situated in close vicinity to the burned areas. Eight hundred D. reticulatus ticks were collected and the densities were compared by multifactorial ANOVA. The highest tick densities were recorded on the fallow lands, and the lowest - on the grazed pastures. Tick densities were up to 10 × times higher on the control sites compared to neighboring post-fire sites. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Estrada-Acosta, M; Jiménez, M; Chaidez, C; León-Félix, J; Castro-Del Campo, N
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.
French, Craig J; Bellomo, Rinaldo; Finfer, Simon R; Lipman, Jeffery; Chapman, Marianne; Boyce, Neil W
To determine the incidence and appropriateness of use of allogenic packed red blood cell (RBC) transfusion in Australian and New Zealand intensive care practice. Intensive care units of 18 Australian and New Zealand hospitals: March 2001. Prospective, observational, multicentre study. All admissions to participating intensive care units were screened and all patients who received a transfusion of RBC were enrolled. The indications for transfusion were recorded and compared with Australian National Health and Medical Research Council guidelines. Transfusions conforming to these guidelines were deemed appropriate. RBC transfusion in intensive care and transfusion appropriateness. 1808 admissions to intensive care units were screened: 357 (19.8%) admissions (350 patients) received an RBC transfusion while in intensive care. Overall, 1464 RBC units were administered in intensive care on 576 transfusion days. The most common indications for transfusion were acute bleeding (60.1%; 880/1464) and diminished physiological reserve (28.9%; 423/1464). The rate of inappropriate transfusion was 3.0% (44/1464). Diminished physiological reserve with haemogloblin level > or = 100 g/L was the indication in 50% (22/44) of inappropriate transfusions; no indication was provided for 31% (15/44). The rate of inappropriate transfusion in Australian and New Zealand intensive care units in 2001 was remarkably low.
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.
Chenu, Claire; Angers, Denis; Métay, Aurélie; Colnenne, Caroline; Klumpp, Katja; Bamière, Laure; Pardon, Lenaic; Pellerin, Sylvain
Though large progress has been achieved in the last decades, net GHG emissions from the agricultural sector are still more poorly quantified than in other sectors. In this study, we examined i) technical mitigation options likely to store carbon in agricultural soils, ii) their potential of additional C storage per unit surface area and iii) applicable areas in mainland France. We considered only agricultural practices being technically feasible by farmers and involving no major change in either production systems or production levels. Moreover, only currently available techniques with validated efficiencies and presenting no major negative environmental impacts were taken into account. Four measures were expected to store additional C in agricultural soils: - Reducing tillage: either a switch to continuous direct seeding, direct seeding with occasional tillage once every five years, or continuous superficial (<15 cm) tillage. - Introducing cover crops in cropping systems: sown between two cash crops on arable farms, in orchards and vineyards (permanent or temporary cover cropping) . - Expanding agroforestry systems; planting of tree lines in cultivated fields and grasslands, and hedges around the field edges. - Increasing the life time of temporary sown grasslands: increase of life time to 5 years. The recent literature was reviewed in order to determine long term (>20yrs) C storage rates (MgC ha-1 y-1,) of cropping systems with and without the proposed practice. Then we analysed the conditions for potential application, in terms of feasibility, acceptance, limitation of yield losses and of other GHG emissions. According to the literature, additional C storage rates were 0.15 (0-0.3) MgC ha-1 y-1 for continuous direct seeding, 0.10 (0-0.2) MgC ha-1 y-1for occasional tillage one year in five, and 0.0 MgC ha-1 y-1 for superficial tillage. Cover crops were estimated to store 0.24 (0.13-0.37) MgC ha-1 y-1 between cash crops and 0.49 (0.23-0.72) MgC ha-1 y-1 when
Champagne, C.; Jarvis, I.; Defourny, P.; Davidson, A.
Agricultural systems differ significantly throughout the world, making a 'one size fits all' approach to remote sensing and monitoring of agricultural landscapes problematic. The Joint Experiment for Crop Assessment and Monitoring (JECAM) was established in 2009 to bring together the global scientific community to work towards a set of best practices and recommendations for using earth observation data to map, monitor and report on agricultural productivity globally across an array of diverse agricultural systems. These methods form the research and development component of the Group on Earth Observation Global Agricultural Monitoring (GEOGLAM) initiative to harmonize global monitoring efforts and increase market transparency. The JECAM initiative brings together researchers from a large number of globally distributed, well monitored agricultural test sites that cover a range of crop types, cropping systems and climate regimes. Each test site works independently as well as together across multiple sites to test methods, sensors and field data collection techniques to derive key agricultural parameters, including crop type, crop condition, crop yield and soil moisture. The outcome of this project will be a set of best practices that cover the range of remote sensing monitoring and reporting needs, including satellite data acquisition, pre-processing techniques, information retrieval and ground data validation. These outcomes provide the research and development foundation for GEOGLAM and will help to inform the development of the GEOGLAM "system of systems" for global agricultural monitoring. The outcomes of the 2014 JECAM science meeting will be discussed as well as examples of methods being developed by JECAM scientists.
Rocha, João; Roebeling, Peter; Rial-Rivas, María Ermitas
The extensive use of fertilizers has become one of the most challenging environmental issues in agricultural catchment areas. In order to reduce the negative impacts from agricultural activities and to accomplish the objectives of the European Water Framework Directive we must consider the implementation of sustainable agricultural practices. In this study, we assess sustainable agricultural practices based on reductions in N-fertilizer application rates (from 100% to 0%) and N-application methods (single, split and slow-release) across key agricultural land use classes in the Vouga catchment, Portugal. The SWAT model was used to relate sustainable agricultural practices, agricultural yields and N-NO3 water pollution deliveries. Results show that crop yields as well as N-NO3 exportation rates decrease with reductions in N-application rates and single N-application methods lead to lower crop yields and higher N-NO3 exportation rates as compared to split and slow-release N-application methods. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Basche, A.; DeLonge, M. S.; Gonzalez, J.
-analysis improves understanding of how alternative management, notably the use of continuous cover in agricultural systems, improves water dynamics. Policies should be designed in a way that allows agricultural producers to prioritize and implement practices that offer greater water conservation while maintaining crop productivity.
Garcia, Ana Maria.; Alexander, Richard B.; Arnold, Jeffrey G.; Norfleet, Lee; White, Michael J.; Robertson, Dale M.; Schwarz, Gregory E.
Despite progress in the implementation of conservation practices, related improvements in water quality have been challenging to measure in larger river systems. In this paper we quantify these downstream effects by applying the empirical U.S. Geological Survey water-quality model SPARROW to investigate whether spatial differences in conservation intensity were statistically correlated with variations in nutrient loads. In contrast to other forms of water quality data analysis, the application of SPARROW controls for confounding factors such as hydrologic variability, multiple sources and environmental processes. A measure of conservation intensity was derived from the USDA-CEAP regional assessment of the Upper Mississippi River and used as an explanatory variable in a model of the Upper Midwest. The spatial pattern of conservation intensity was negatively correlated (p = 0.003) with the total nitrogen loads in streams in the basin. Total phosphorus loads were weakly negatively correlated with conservation (p = 0.25). Regional nitrogen reductions were estimated to range from 5 to 34% and phosphorus reductions from 1 to 10% in major river basins of the Upper Mississippi region. The statistical associations between conservation and nutrient loads are consistent with hydrological and biogeochemical processes such as denitrification. The results provide empirical evidence at the regional scale that conservation practices have had a larger statistically detectable effect on nitrogen than on phosphorus loadings in streams and rivers of the Upper Mississippi Basin.
García, Ana María; Alexander, Richard B; Arnold, Jeffrey G; Norfleet, Lee; White, Michael J; Robertson, Dale M; Schwarz, Gregory
Despite progress in the implementation of conservation practices, related improvements in water quality have been challenging to measure in larger river systems. In this paper we quantify these downstream effects by applying the empirical U.S. Geological Survey water-quality model SPARROW to investigate whether spatial differences in conservation intensity were statistically correlated with variations in nutrient loads. In contrast to other forms of water quality data analysis, the application of SPARROW controls for confounding factors such as hydrologic variability, multiple sources and environmental processes. A measure of conservation intensity was derived from the USDA-CEAP regional assessment of the Upper Mississippi River and used as an explanatory variable in a model of the Upper Midwest. The spatial pattern of conservation intensity was negatively correlated (p = 0.003) with the total nitrogen loads in streams in the basin. Total phosphorus loads were weakly negatively correlated with conservation (p = 0.25). Regional nitrogen reductions were estimated to range from 5 to 34% and phosphorus reductions from 1 to 10% in major river basins of the Upper Mississippi region. The statistical associations between conservation and nutrient loads are consistent with hydrological and biogeochemical processes such as denitrification. The results provide empirical evidence at the regional scale that conservation practices have had a larger statistically detectable effect on nitrogen than on phosphorus loadings in streams and rivers of the Upper Mississippi Basin.
McCord, Stephen A.; Heim, Wesley A.
The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta's (Delta) beneficial uses for humans and wildlife are impaired by elevated methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations in fish. MeHg is a neurotoxin that bioaccumulates in aquatic food webs. The total maximum daily load (TMDL) implementation plan aimed at reducing MeHg in Delta fish obligates dischargers to conduct MeHg control studies. Over 150 stakeholders collaborated to identify 24 management practices (MPs) addressing MeHg nonpoint sources (NPS) in three categories: biogeochemistry (6), hydrology (14), and soil/vegetation (4). Land uses were divided into six categories: permanently and seasonally flooded wetlands, flooded and irrigated agricultural lands, floodplains, and brackish-fresh tidal marshes. Stakeholders scored MPs based on seven criteria: scientific certainty, costs, MeHg reduction potential, spatial applicability, technical capacity to implement, negative impacts to beneficial uses, and conflicting requirements. Semi-quantitative scoring for MPs applicable to each land use (totaling >400 individual scores) led to consensus-based prioritization. This process relied on practical experience from diverse and accomplished NPS stakeholders and synthesis of 17 previous studies. Results provide a comprehensive, stakeholder-driven prioritization of MPs for wetland and irrigated agricultural land managers. Final prioritization highlights the most promising MPs for practical application and control study, and a secondary set of MPs warranting further evaluation. MPs that address hydrology and soil/vegetation were prioritized because experiences were positive and implementation appeared more feasible. MeHg control studies will need to address the TMDL conundrum that MPs effective at reducing MeHg exports could both exacerbate MeHg exposure and contend with other management objectives on site.
Prada, A F; Chu, M L; Guzman, J A; Moriasi, D N
Evaluating the effectiveness of agricultural land management practices in minimizing environmental impacts using models is challenged by the presence of inherent uncertainties during the model development stage. One issue faced during the model development stage is the uncertainty involved in model parameterization. Using a single optimized set of parameters (one snapshot) to represent baseline conditions of the system limits the applicability and robustness of the model to properly represent future or alternative scenarios. The objective of this study was to develop a framework that facilitates model parameter selection while evaluating uncertainty to assess the impacts of land management practices at the watershed scale. The model framework was applied to the Lake Creek watershed located in southwestern Oklahoma, USA. A two-step probabilistic approach was implemented to parameterize the Agricultural Policy/Environmental eXtender (APEX) model using global uncertainty and sensitivity analysis to estimate the full spectrum of total monthly water yield (WYLD) and total monthly Nitrogen loads (N) in the watershed under different land management practices. Twenty-seven models were found to represent the baseline scenario in which uncertainty of up to 29% and 400% in WYLD and N, respectively, is plausible. Changing the land cover to pasture manifested the highest decrease in N to up to 30% for a full pasture coverage while changing to full winter wheat cover can increase the N up to 11%. The methodology developed in this study was able to quantify the full spectrum of system responses, the uncertainty associated with them, and the most important parameters that drive their variability. Results from this study can be used to develop strategic decisions on the risks and tradeoffs associated with different management alternatives that aim to increase productivity while also minimizing their environmental impacts. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
van Oel, P. R.; Alfredo, K. A.; Russo, T. A.
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
This article describes a small-scale study that explored the relationship between the pedagogical practices characterised as "open" and the existing model of undergraduate teaching and learning at a large research-intensive university (RIU). The aim was to determine the factors that might enable (conversely impede) the greater uptake of…
Wambaugh, Julie L.; Nessler, Christina; Cameron, Rosalea; Mauszycki, Shannon C.
Purpose: The authors designed this investigation to extend the development of a treatment for acquired apraxia of speech (AOS)--sound production treatment (SPT)--by examining the effects of 2 treatment intensities and 2 schedules of practice. Method: The authors used a multiple baseline design across participants and behaviors with 4 speakers with…
Purpose: The aim of this paper is to show the association which exists among the wide range of knowledge management, knowledge sharing and HRM practices in the knowledge-intensive firms. Design/methodology/approach: The proposed literature review includes the systematic process of research in the following manner; after identifying the main area…
Qi, Xiaoxing; Wang, Raymond Yu; Li, Jianchun; Zhang, Tao; Liu, Liming; He, Yanling
Rapid population growth and environmental deterioration make ensuring food security with lower environmental costs fundamental to realizing sustainable development in China and other developing countries. The conceptual framework used in this paper integrates the major consequences of intensive agricultural land use and the diverse objectives of policymakers and farmers. It also offers an operational approach, based on farmers' diverse performance in grain production and farmland productivity, to assess food production and environmental impacts under foci-differentiated scenarios. Using data from farmer household surveys, soil surveys, land use images, and statistical yearbooks, this approach was tested using a regional case in China. The results indicate that, among all farmer types, the medium-scale farmers had a better comprehensive performance for grain production for yield, fertilizer and pesticide inputs, labor productivity, and sustainability. Therefore, grain yields can be increased and environmental costs reduced simultaneously through the use of policy instruments that encourage the transformation of trapped farmers into medium-scale farmers and balancing the proportion of single and double cropped rice. In addition, and in order to reduce grain losses caused by natural disasters and to prevent environmental degradation, robust policy measures should be developed to avoid the currently predominant cropping patterns that erode biodiversity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Climate change affects agricultural producers because agriculture and fisheries depend on specific climate conditions. Temperature changes can cause crop planting dates to shift. Droughts and floods due to climate change may hinder farming practices.
Reis, Marcelo Moreno Dos; Oliveira, Ana Paula Natividade de; Turci, Silvana Rubano Barretto; Dantas, Renato Maciel; Silva, Valéria Dos Santos Pinto da; Gross, Cátia; Jensen, Teresinha; Silva, Vera Luiza da Costa E
The study aimed to explore the knowledge, attitudes, and practices of women farmers working in tobacco production concerning the social, environmental, and health impacts of this economic activity. Focus groups were used in this qualitative study, and themes were explored until reaching saturation. The study was conducted in a municipality (county) in southern Brazil in 2013 and included 64 women farmers. The discussions revealed participants' familiarity with health problems associated with workloads in tobacco production: green tobacco sickness, pesticide poisoning, musculoskeletal disorders, and others. The discussions also revealed a concern with the negative impacts of tobacco agriculture on the environment. They also revealed apprehension concerning decisions on switching to alternatives for sustainable agricultural production, emphasizing that on-going and systematic government support would be necessary for such a transition. Women farmers identified various factors that contribute to the persistence of tobacco farming: small holdings for cultivation, lack of guarantees for marketing crops, and indebtedness to tobacco companies. The study showed that an integrated approach is needed to deal with tobacco farmers' problems, considering a balance between farmers' beliefs and government decisions. This approach, in keeping with the recommendations of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, may help strengthen policies and measures to promote health and sustainable local development.
Piemonti, A. D.; Babbar-Sebens, M.; Luzar, E. J.
Modeled watershed management plans have become valuable tools for evaluating the effectiveness and impacts of conservation practices on hydrologic processes in watersheds. In multi-objective optimization approaches, several studies have focused on maximizing physical, ecological, or economic benefits of practices in a specific location, without considering the relationship between social systems and social attitudes on the overall optimality of the practice at that location. For example, objectives that have been commonly used in spatial optimization of practices are economic costs, sediment loads, nutrient loads and pesticide loads. Though the benefits derived from these objectives are generally oriented towards community preferences, they do not represent attitudes of landowners who might operate their land differently than their neighbors (e.g. farm their own land or rent the land to someone else) and might have different social/personal drivers that motivate them to adopt the practices. In addition, a distribution of such landowners could exist in the watershed, leading to spatially varying preferences to practices. In this study we evaluated the effect of three different land tenure types on the spatial-optimization of conservation practices. To perform the optimization, we used a uniform distribution of land tenure type and a spatially varying distribution of land tenure type. Our results show that for a typical Midwestern agricultural watershed, the most optimal solutions (i.e. highest benefits for minimum economic costs) found were for a uniform distribution of landowners who operate their own land. When a different land-tenure was used for the watershed, the optimized alternatives did not change significantly for nitrates reduction benefits and sediment reduction benefits, but were attained at economic costs much higher than the costs of the landowner who farms her/his own land. For example, landowners who rent to cash-renters would have to spend ~120
Mellander, P.-E.; Melland, A. R.; Shortle, G.; Wall, D.; Mechan, S.; Buckley, C.; Fealy, R.; Jordan, P.
Eutrophication of fresh, transitional and coastal waters by excessive nutrient inputs is one of the most widespread water quality problems in developed countries. Sources of nutrient nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) can come from a multiplicity of sources and be dependent on numerous hydrological controls from catchments with both urban and agricultural landuses. Aquatic impacts are widely reported as a result of excessive nutrient transfers from land to water and include changes in ecological integrity and loss of amenity. In the European Union, the Water Framework Directive (WFD) and associated Directives are the key structures with which member states must develop national and often trans-national polices to deal with issues of water resources management. The linked Nitrates Directive is particularly concerned with integrating sustainable agriculture and good water quality objectives and is written into national polices. In Ireland this policy is the Nitrates Directive National Action Programme (NAP), Statutory Instruction 378, Good Agricultural Practise regulation, and amongst other things, sets targets and limits on the use of organic and inorganic fertilisers, soil fertility and slurry/fertiliser spreading and cultivation times. To evaluate the effectiveness of this policy, Teagasc, the Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority, is undertaking a catchment scale audit on sources, sinks, and changes in nutrient use and export over several years. The Agricultural Catchments Programme is based on a science-stakeholder-management partnership to generate knowledge and specifically to protect water quality from nitrogen and phosphorus transfers within the constraints of the requirements of modern Irish agricultural practises. Eight catchments of 5-12 km2 have been selected for the programme to represent a range of agricultural intensities and vulnerabilities to nitrogen and phosphorus loss including catchments that are situated on permeable and impermeable
Guzmán, Gema; Castillo, Carlos; Taguas, Encarnación
One of the aims of 'The Bologna Process' is to promote among the students the acquisition of practical, social and creative skills to face real-life situations and to solve the difficulties they might find during their professional life. It involves an important change in the educational system, from a traditional approach focused on teaching, towards a new one that encourages learning. Under this context, University teaching implies the design of activities addressed to the dissemination of "know-how" to solve different problems associated with two technical disciplines: Forest and Agricultural Engineering. This study presents a preliminary experience where a group of information and communication technologies (ICT) such as, audiovisual resources (videos, reports and photo gallery), virtual visits to blogs and interactive activities have been used to provide a comprehensive knowledge of the environmental and sociocultural components of the landscape in order to facilitate the decision-making process in the engineering project context . With these tools, the students must study and characterize all these aspects in order to justify the chosen solutions and the project design. This approach was followed in the analysis of the limiting factors of practical cases in projects about forestation, landscape restoration and hydrological planning. This communication shows how this methodology has been applied in Forest and Agricultural Engineering and the students' experience with these innovative tools. The use of ICTs involved a friendly framework that stimulated students' interest and made subjects more attractive, since it allowed to assess the complex relationships between landscape, history and economy. Furthermore, this type of activities promotes the interdisciplinary training and the acquisition of creative and autonomous skills which are not included in many cases into the main objectives of the subjects.
Makar, N. I.; Archer, S.; Rooks, K.; Sparks, K.; Trigg, C.; Lourie, J.; Wilkins, K.
Concerns about climate change have driven efforts to reduce or offset greenhouse gas emissions. Agricultural activity has drawn considerable attention because it accounts for nearly twelve percent of total anthropogenic emissions. Depending on the type of tillage method utilized, farm land can be either a source or a sink of carbon. Conventional tillage disturbs the soil and can release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Conservational tillage practices have been advocated for their ability to sequester carbon, reduce soil erosion, maintain soil moisture, and increase long-term productivity. If carbon credit trading systems are implemented, a cost-effective, efficient tillage monitoring system is needed to enforce offset standards. Remote sensing technology can expedite the process and has shown promising results in distinguishing crop residue from soil. Agricultural indices such as the CAI, SINDRI, and LCA illuminate the unique reflectance spectra of crop residue and are thus able to classify fields based on percent crop cover. The CAI requires hyperspectral data, as it relies on narrow bands within the shortwave infrared portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. Although limited in availability, hyperspectral data has been shown to produce the most accurate results for detecting crop residue on the soil. A new approach to using the CAI was the focus of this study. Previously acquired field data was located in a region covered by a Hyperion swath and is thus the primary study area. In previous studies, ground-based data were needed for each satellite swath to correctly calibrate the linear relationship between the index values and the fraction of residue cover. We hypothesized that there should be a standard method which is able to convert index values into residue classifications without ground data analysis. To do this, end index values for a particular data set were assumed to be associated with end values of residue cover percentages. This method may prove
Liu, Y.; Engel, B.; Collingsworth, P.; Pijanowski, B. C.
Nutrient loading from the Maumee River watershed is a significant reason for the harmful algal blooms (HABs) problem in Lake Erie. Strategies to reduce nutrient loading from agricultural areas in the Maumee River watershed need to be explored. Best management practices (BMPs) are popular approaches for improving hydrology and water quality. Various scenarios of BMP implementation were simulated in the AXL watershed (an agricultural watershed in Maumee River watershed) using Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) and a new BMP cost tool to explore the cost-effectiveness of the practices. BMPs of interest included vegetative filter strips, grassed waterways, blind inlets, grade stabilization structures, wetlands, no-till, nutrient management, residue management, and cover crops. The following environmental concerns were considered: streamflow, Total Phosphorous (TP), Dissolved Reactive Phosphorus (DRP), Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen (TKN), and Nitrate+Nitrite (NOx). To obtain maximum hydrological and water quality benefits with minimum cost, an optimization tool was developed to optimally select and place BMPs by connecting SWAT, the BMP cost tool, and optimization algorithms. The optimization tool was then applied in AXL watershed to explore optimization focusing on critical areas (top 25% of areas with highest runoff volume/pollutant loads per area) vs. all areas of the watershed, optimization using weather data for spring (March to July, due to the goal of reducing spring phosphorus in watershed management plan) vs. full year, and optimization results of implementing BMPs to achieve the watershed management plan goal (reducing 2008 TP levels by 40%). The optimization tool and BMP optimization results can be used by watershed groups and communities to solve hydrology and water quality problems.
Taylor, Sam D; He, Yi; Hiscock, Kevin M
Agricultural diffuse water pollution remains a notable global pressure on water quality, posing risks to aquatic ecosystems, human health and water resources and as a result legislation has been introduced in many parts of the world to protect water bodies. Due to their efficiency and cost-effectiveness, water quality models have been increasingly applied to catchments as Decision Support Tools (DSTs) to identify mitigation options that can be introduced to reduce agricultural diffuse water pollution and improve water quality. In this study, the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was applied to the River Wensum catchment in eastern England with the aim of quantifying the long-term impacts of potential changes to agricultural management practices on river water quality. Calibration and validation were successfully performed at a daily time-step against observations of discharge, nitrate and total phosphorus obtained from high-frequency water quality monitoring within the Blackwater sub-catchment, covering an area of 19.6 km(2). A variety of mitigation options were identified and modelled, both singly and in combination, and their long-term effects on nitrate and total phosphorus losses were quantified together with the 95% uncertainty range of model predictions. Results showed that introducing a red clover cover crop to the crop rotation scheme applied within the catchment reduced nitrate losses by 19.6%. Buffer strips of 2 m and 6 m width represented the most effective options to reduce total phosphorus losses, achieving reductions of 12.2% and 16.9%, respectively. This is one of the first studies to quantify the impacts of agricultural mitigation options on long-term water quality for nitrate and total phosphorus at a daily resolution, in addition to providing an estimate of the uncertainties of those impacts. The results highlighted the need to consider multiple pollutants, the degree of uncertainty associated with model predictions and the risk of
Baker, Nancy T.; Stone, Wesley W.; Frey, Jeffrey W.; Wilson, John T.
The study of agricultural chemicals is one of five national priority topics being addressed by the National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program in its second decade of studies, which began in 2001. Seven watersheds across the Nation were selected for the NAWQA agricultural-chemical topical study. The watersheds selected represent a range of agricultural settings - with varying crop types and agricultural practices related to tillage, irrigation, artificial drainage, and chemical use - as well as a range of landscapes with different geology, soils, topography, climate, and hydrology (Capel and others, 2004). Chemicals selected for study include nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) and about 50 commonly used pesticides. This study design leads to an improved understanding of many factors that can affect the movement of water and chemicals in different agricultural settings. 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 (Capel and others, 2004). This Fact Sheet highlights the results of the NAWQA agricultural chemical study in the Leary Weber Ditch Watershed in Hancock County, Indiana. This watershed was selected to represent a tile-drained, corn and soybean, humid area typical in the Midwest.
Azov, N A; Azova, E A
The use of an Amfit-0,2/10-01 apparatus generating low-intensity ultrahigh frequency (UHF) electromagnetic radiation improved efficiency of therapy of sick children. This treatment allowed to reduce the frequency of intake of anesthetics in the post-operative period, correct metabolic disorders in children with type 1 diabetes mellitus, reduce severity of diabetic nephropathy and polyneuropathy, prevent formation of fresh foci of lipoid necrobiosis. The results of the study indicate that the use of low-intensity UHF electromagnetic radiation may be recommended for more extensive introduction into practical clinical work of pediatric endocrinologists and surgeons.
Pure tone intensity discrimination thresholds can be elevated by the introduction of remote maskers with roved level. This effect is on the order of 10 dB [10log(ΔI/I)] in some conditions and can be demonstrated under conditions of little or no energetic masking. The current study examined the effect of practice and observer strategy on this phenomenon. Experiment 1 included observers who had no formal experience with intensity discrimination and provided training over six hours on a single masked intensity discrimination task to assess learning effects. Thresholds fell with practice for most observers, with significant improvements in 6 out of 8 cases. Despite these improvements significant masking remained in all cases. The second experiment assessed trial-by-trial effects of roved masker level. Conditional probability of a ‘signal-present’ response as a function of the rove value assigned to each of the two masker tones indicates fundamental differences among observers’ processing strategies, even after six hours of practice. The variability in error patterns across practiced listeners suggests that observers approach the task differently, though this variability does not appear to be related to sensitivity. PMID:18177156
Almberg, Kirsten S; Turyk, Mary; Jones, Rachael M; Anderson, Robert; Graber, Judith; Banda, Elizabeth; Waller, Lance A; Gibson, Roger; Stayner, Leslie T
Missouri is an agriculturally intensive state, primarily growing corn and soybeans with additional rice and cotton farming in some southeastern counties. Communities located in close proximity to pesticide-treated fields are known to have increased exposure to pesticides and may be at increased risk of adverse birth outcomes. The study aims were to assess the relationship between county-level measures of crop-specific agricultural production and adverse birth outcomes in Missouri and to evaluate the most appropriate statistical methodologies for doing so. Potential associations between county level data on the densities of particular crops and low birth weight and preterm births were examined in Missouri between 2004-2006. Covariates considered as potential confounders and effect modifiers included gender, maternal race/ethnicity, maternal age at delivery, maternal smoking, access to prenatal care, quarter of birth, county median household income, and population density. These data were analyzed using both standard Poisson regression models as well as models allowing for temporal and spatial correlation of the data. There was no evidence of an association between corn, soybean, or wheat densities with low birth weight or preterm births. Significant positive associations between both rice and cotton density were observed with both low birth weight and preterm births. Model results were consistent using Poisson and alternative models accounting for spatial and temporal variability. The associations of rice and cotton with low birth weight and preterm births warrant further investigation. Study limitations include the ecological study design and limited available covariate information. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Ngowi, A V F; Maeda, D N; Partanen, T J
Extension workers are educated locally to enable them to train farmers in using improved local farming methods and imported technology, such as pesticides, to increase crop production. However, the extension workers are not adequately trained in health aspects of pesticides and hence are unable to provide adequate services to farmers with regard to safe use of pesticides. The present study assessed the knowledge, attitudes and practices of agricultural extension workers with respect to health effects of pesticides in order to develop strategies for the control of pesticide exposure and prevention of pesticide poisoning in Tanzania. A survey of Tanzanian agricultural extensionists was undertaken in 1991-1994 using a standardized questionnaire in face-to-face interviews. Extensionists who were district agricultural officers, assistant agricultural officers, agricultural assistants, and field assistants, working in the coffee and cotton growing areas (N = 61) within a radius of 15 km of farm, estate or village under farm worker study (reported elsewhere) were included in the survey. The majority of extensionists knew that pesticides could enter the human body but only a quarter perceived pesticides as a major problem in the community they served. The majority showed awareness of potential health hazards of the different pesticides used in their service areas, but they did not recognize what pesticides were responsible for poisoning. A high proportion was familiar with first aid procedures in case of pesticide poisoning; however, many procedures described were not appropriate for pesticide poisoning. The survey indicated that training of agricultural workers in health aspects of pesticide exposure is an important task for adequate provision of service to farmers with regard to safe use of pesticides in Tanzania. Nevertheless, the appropriate role of extensionists in reducing the health impact of pesticides would be to advocate pesticides of low toxicity or non
Bakhru, Rita N; McWilliams, David J; Wiebe, Douglas J; Spuhler, Vicki J; Schweickert, William D
Early mobilization (EM) improves outcomes for mechanically ventilated patients. Variation in structure and organizational characteristics may affect implementation of EM practices. We queried intensive care unit (ICU) environment and standardized ICU practices to evaluate organizational characteristics that enable EM practice. We recruited 151 ICUs in France, 150 in Germany, 150 in the United Kingdom, and 500 in the United States by telephone. Survey domains included respondent characteristics, hospital and ICU characteristics, and ICU practices and protocols. We surveyed 1,484 ICU leaders and received a 64% response rate (951 ICUs). Eighty-eight percent of respondents were in nursing leadership roles; the remainder were physiotherapists. Surveyed ICUs were predominantly mixed medical-surgical units (67%), and 27% were medical ICUs. ICU staffing models differed significantly (P < 0.001 each) by country for high-intensity staffing, nurse/patient ratios, and dedicated physiotherapists. ICU practices differed by country, with EM practices present in 40% of French ICUs, 59% of German ICUs, 52% of U.K. ICUs, and 45% of U.S. ICUs. Formal written EM protocols were present in 24%, 30%, 20%, and 30%, respectively, of those countries' ICUs. In multivariate analysis, EM practice was associated with multidisciplinary rounds (odds ratio [OR], 1.77; P = 0.001), setting daily goals for patients (OR, 1.62; P = 0.02), presence of a dedicated physiotherapist (OR, 2.48; P < 0.001), and the ICU's being located in Germany (reference, United States; OR, 2.84; P < 0.001). EM practice was also associated with higher nurse staffing levels (1:1 nurse/patient ratio as a reference; 1:2 nurse/patient ratio OR, 0.59; P = 0.05; 1:3 nurse/patient ratio OR, 0.33; P = 0.005; 1:4 or less nurse/patient ratio OR, 0.37; P = 0.005). Those responding rarely cited ambulation of mechanically ventilated patients, use of a bedside cycle, or neuromuscular electrical stimulation
Primost, Jezabel E; Marino, Damián J G; Aparicio, Virginia C; Costa, José Luis; Carriquiriborde, Pedro
In the Pampas, public concern has strongly risen because of the intensive use of glyphosate for weed control and fallow associated with biotech crops. The present study was aimed to evaluate the occurrence and concentration of the herbicide and its main metabolite (AMPA) in soil and other environmental compartments of the mentioned agroecosystem, including groundwater, in relation to real-world agricultural management practices in the region. Occurrence was almost ubiquitous in solid matrices (83-100%) with maximum concentrations among the higher reported in the world (soil: 8105 and 38939; sediment: 3294 and 7219; suspended particulate matter (SPM): 584 and 475 μg/kg of glyphosate and AMPA). Lower detection frequency was observed in surface water (27-55%) with maximum concentrations in whole water of 1.80 and 1.90 μg/L of glyphosate and AMPA, indicating that SPM analysis would be more sensitive for detection in the aquatic ecosystem. No detectable concentrations of glyphosate or AMPA were observed in groundwater. Glyphosate soil concentrations were better correlated with the total cumulative dose and total number of applications than the last spraying event dose, and an increment of 1 mg glyphosate/kg soil every 5 spraying events was estimated. Findings allow to infer that, under current practices, application rates are higher than dissipation rates. Hence, glyphosate and AMPA should be considered "pseudo-persistent" pollutants and a revisions of management procedures, monitoring programs, and ecological risk for soil and sediments should be also recommended. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Uden, Daniel R.; Mitchell, Rob B.; Allen, Craig R.; Guan, Qingfeng; McCoy, Tim D.
To date, cellulosic ethanol production has not been commercialized in the United States. However, government mandates aimed at increasing second-generation biofuel production could spur exploratory development in the cellulosic ethanol industry. We conducted an in-depth analysis of the fuelshed surrounding a starch-based ethanol plant near York, Nebraska that has the potential for cellulosic ethanol production. To assess the feasibility of supplying adequate biomass for year-round cellulosic ethanol production from residual maize (Zea mays) stover and bioenergy switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) within a 40-km road network service area of the existing ethanol plant, we identified ∼14,000 ha of marginally productive cropland within the service area suitable for conversion from annual rowcrops to switchgrass and ∼132,000 ha of maize-enrolled cropland from which maize stover could be collected. Annual maize stover and switchgrass biomass supplies within the 40-km service area could range between 429,000 and 752,000 metric tons (mT). Approximately 140–250 million liters (l) of cellulosic ethanol could be produced, rivaling the current 208 million l annual starch-based ethanol production capacity of the plant. We conclude that sufficient quantities of biomass could be produced from maize stover and switchgrass near the plant to support year-round cellulosic ethanol production at current feedstock yields, sustainable removal rates and bioconversion efficiencies. Modifying existing starch-based ethanol plants in intensive agricultural fuelsheds could increase ethanol output, return marginally productive cropland to perennial vegetation, and remove maize stover from productive cropland to meet feedstock demand.
Eanes, Francis R; Singh, Ajay S; Bulla, Brian R; Ranjan, Pranay; Prokopy, Linda S; Fales, Mary; Wickerham, Benjamin; Doran, Patrick J
Nonpoint source pollution from agricultural land uses continues to pose one of the most significant threats to water quality in the US, with measurable impacts across local, regional, and national scales. The impact and the influence of targeted conservation efforts are directly related to the degree to which farmers are familiar with and trust the entities providing the information and/or outreach. Recent research suggests that farmers consistently rank independent and retail-affiliated crop advisers as among the most trusted and influential sources for agronomic information, but little is understood about whether farmers are willing to receive advice from crop advisers on the use of practices that conserve soil and water, and, if so, whether crop advisers will be perceived as influential. We present survey data from farmers (n = 1461) in Michigan's Saginaw Bay (Lake Huron) watershed to explore these questions. Results suggest that farmers view crop advisers as trustworthy sources of information about conservation, and influential on management practices that have large conservation implications. We discuss these results, along with perceived barriers and opportunities to crop advisers partnering with traditional conservation agencies to enhance the impact of voluntary conservation programs.
Eanes, Francis R.; Singh, Ajay S.; Bulla, Brian R.; Ranjan, Pranay; Prokopy, Linda S.; Fales, Mary; Wickerham, Benjamin; Doran, Patrick J.
Nonpoint source pollution from agricultural land uses continues to pose one of the most significant threats to water quality in the US, with measurable impacts across local, regional, and national scales. The impact and the influence of targeted conservation efforts are directly related to the degree to which farmers are familiar with and trust the entities providing the information and/or outreach. Recent research suggests that farmers consistently rank independent and retail-affiliated crop advisers as among the most trusted and influential sources for agronomic information, but little is understood about whether farmers are willing to receive advice from crop advisers on the use of practices that conserve soil and water, and, if so, whether crop advisers will be perceived as influential. We present survey data from farmers ( n = 1461) in Michigan's Saginaw Bay (Lake Huron) watershed to explore these questions. Results suggest that farmers view crop advisers as trustworthy sources of information about conservation, and influential on management practices that have large conservation implications. We discuss these results, along with perceived barriers and opportunities to crop advisers partnering with traditional conservation agencies to enhance the impact of voluntary conservation programs.
Muurinen, Johanna; Stedtfeld, Robert; Karkman, Antti; Pärnänen, Katariina; Tiedje, James; Virta, Marko
The co-occurrence of antibiotic-resistance genes (ARGs) and mobile genetic elements (MGEs) in farm environments can potentially foster the development of antibiotic-resistant pathogens. We studied the resistome of Finnish dairy and swine farms where use of antibiotics is limited to treating bacterial infections and manure is only applied from April to September. The resistome of manure, soil, and tile drainage water from the ditch was investigated from the beginning of the growing season until forage harvest. The relative ARG and MGE abundance was measured using a qPCR array with 363 primer pairs. Manure samples had the highest abundance of ARGs and MGEs, which increased during storage. Immediately following land application, the ARGs abundant in manure were detected in soil, but their abundance decreased over time with many becoming undetectable. This suggests that increases in ARG abundances after fertilizing are temporary and occur annually under agricultural practices that restrict antibiotic use. A few of the ARGs were detected in the ditch water, but most of them were undetected in the manure. Our results document the dissipation and dissemination off farm of ARGs under Finnish limited antibiotic use and suggest that such practices could help reduce the load of antibiotic-resistance genes in the environment.
Patti, Antonio; Rose, Michael; Little, Karen; Jackson, Roy; Cavagnaro, Timothy
. However, these growth benefits subsequently diminished over time. Insignificant growth benefits were observed for lucerne. The analysis of the literature and our own work indicates that it is difficult to account for all the possible variables where research is used to inform land management practices. Assisting farmers to conduct localised research in cooperative ventures is likely to bring about the best outcomes where site-specific research directly informs land management practices. 1. Michael T. Rose, Antonio F. Patti, Karen R. Little, Alicia L. Brown, W. Roy Jackson, Timothy R. Cavagnaro, A Meta-Analysis and Review of Plant-Growth Response to Humic Substances: Practical Implications for Agriculture, Advances in Agronomy, 2013, 124, 37-89
Yin, Guanyi; Liu, Liming; Yuan, Chengcheng
This study primarily examined the assessment of environmental risk in high intensity agricultural areas. Dongting Lake basin was taken as a case study, which is one of the major grain producing areas in China. Using data obtained from 1989 to 2012, we applied Material Flow Analysis (MFA) to show the material consumption, pollutant output and production storage in the agricultural-environmental system and assessed the environmental risk index on the basis of the MFA results. The results predicted that the status of the environmental quality of the Dongting Lake area is unsatisfactory for the foreseeable future. The direct material input (DMI) declined by 13.9%, the domestic processed output (DPO) increased by 28.21%, the intensity of material consumption (IMC) decreased by 36.7%, the intensity of material discharge (IMD) increased by 10%, the material productivity (MP) increased by 27 times, the environmental efficiency (EE) increased by 15.31 times, and the material storage (PAS) increased by 0.23%. The DMI and DPO was higher at rural places on the edge of cities, whereas the risk of urban agriculture has arisen due to the higher increasing rate of DMI and DPO in cities compared with the counties. The composite environmental risk index increased from 0.33 to 0.96, indicating that the total environmental risk changed gradually but seriously during the 24 years assessed. The driving factors that affect environmental risk in high intensity agriculture can be divided into five classes: social, economic, human, natural and disruptive incidents. This study discussed a number of effective measures for protecting the environment while ensuring food production yields. Additional research in other areas and certain improvements of this method in future studies may be necessary to develop a more effective method of managing and controlling agricultural-environmental interactions.
Bak, Thomas H; Long, Madeleine R; Vega-Mendoza, Mariana; Sorace, Antonella
We investigated the impact of a short intensive language course on attentional functions. We examined 33 participants of a one-week Scottish Gaelic course and compared them to 34 controls: 16 active controls who participated in courses of comparable duration and intensity but not involving foreign language learning and 18 passive controls who followed their usual routines. Participants completed auditory tests of attentional inhibition and switching. There was no difference between the groups in any measures at the beginning of the course. At the end of the course, a significant improvement in attention switching was observed in the language group (p < .001) but not the control group (p = .127), independent of the age of participants (18-78 years). Half of the language participants (n = 17) were retested nine months after their course. All those who practiced Gaelic 5 hours or more per week improved from their baseline performance. In contrast, those who practiced 4 hours or fewer showed an inconsistent pattern: some improved while others stayed the same or deteriorated. Our results suggest that even a short period of intensive language learning can modulate attentional functions and that all age groups can benefit from this effect. Moreover, these short-term effects can be maintained through continuous practice.
Bak, Thomas H.; Long, Madeleine R.; Vega-Mendoza, Mariana; Sorace, Antonella
We investigated the impact of a short intensive language course on attentional functions. We examined 33 participants of a one-week Scottish Gaelic course and compared them to 34 controls: 16 active controls who participated in courses of comparable duration and intensity but not involving foreign language learning and 18 passive controls who followed their usual routines. Participants completed auditory tests of attentional inhibition and switching. There was no difference between the groups in any measures at the beginning of the course. At the end of the course, a significant improvement in attention switching was observed in the language group (p < .001) but not the control group (p = .127), independent of the age of participants (18–78 years). Half of the language participants (n = 17) were retested nine months after their course. All those who practiced Gaelic 5 hours or more per week improved from their baseline performance. In contrast, those who practiced 4 hours or fewer showed an inconsistent pattern: some improved while others stayed the same or deteriorated. Our results suggest that even a short period of intensive language learning can modulate attentional functions and that all age groups can benefit from this effect. Moreover, these short-term effects can be maintained through continuous practice. PMID:27120179
Fritz, Megan L; DeYonke, Alexandra M; Papanicolaou, Alexie; Micinski, Stephen; Westbrook, John; Gould, Fred
Adaptation to human-induced environmental change has the potential to profoundly influence the genomic architecture of affected species. This is particularly true in agricultural ecosystems, where anthropogenic selection pressure is strong. Heliothis virescens primarily feeds on cotton in its larval stages, and US populations have been declining since the widespread planting of transgenic cotton, which endogenously expresses proteins derived from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). No physiological adaptation to Bt toxin has been found in the field, so adaptation in this altered environment could involve (i) shifts in host plant selection mechanisms to avoid cotton, (ii) changes in detoxification mechanisms required for cotton-feeding vs. feeding on other hosts or (iii) loss of resistance to previously used management practices including insecticides. Here, we begin to address whether such changes occurred in H. virescens populations between 1997 and 2012, as Bt-cotton cultivation spread through the agricultural landscape. For our study, we produced an H. virescens genome assembly and used this in concert with a ddRAD-seq-enabled genome scan to identify loci with significant allele frequency changes over the 15-year period. Genetic changes at a previously described H. virescens insecticide target of selection were detectable in our genome scan and increased our confidence in this methodology. Additional loci were also detected as being under selection, and we quantified the selection strength required to elicit observed allele frequency changes at each locus. Potential contributions of genes near loci under selection to adaptive phenotypes in the H. virescens cotton system are discussed. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Nwaichi, Eucharia; Onyeike, Eugene; Frac, Magdalena; Iwo, Godknows
A two - year plant - based soil clean - up was carried out at a crude oil spill agricultural site in a Niger Delta community in Nigeria to access further clean - up potentials of Cymbopogon citratus. Applied diagnostic ratios identified mixed petrogenic and pyrogenic sources as the main contributors of PAHs. Up to 90.8% sequestration was obtained for carcinogenic PAHs especially Benz (a) pyrene in a 2 - phase manner. A community level approach for assessing patterns of sole carbon source utilization by mixed microbial samples was employed to differentiate spatial and temporal changes in the soil microbial communities. In relation to pollution, soil conditioning notably decreased the lag times and showed mixed effects for colour development rates, maximum absorbance and the overall community pattern. For rate and utilization of different carbon substrates in BIOLOG wells, after day 3, in comparison to control soil communities, contamination with hydrocarbons and associated types increased amines and amides consumption. Consumption of carbohydrates in all polluted and unamended regimes decreased markedlyin comparison to those cultivated with C. citratus. We found a direct relationship between cellulose breakdown, measurable with B-glucosidase activity, organic matter content and CO2 realease within all soils in the present study. Organic amendment rendered most studied contaminants unavailable for uptake in preference to inorganic fertilizer in both study years. Generally, phytoremediation improved significantly the microbial community activity and thus would promote ecosystem restoration in relation to most patronised techniques. Supplementation with required nutrients, in a long - term design would present many ecological benefits. Keywords: Agricultural soils; Recovery; Hydrocarbon pollution; Ecology; Management practice.
De Marco, A; De Salvia, R; Polani, S; Ricordy, R; Sorrenti, F; Perticone, P; Cozzi, R; D'Ambrosio, C; De Simone, C; Guidotti, M; Albanesi, T; Duranti, G; Festa, F; Gensabella, G; Owczarek, M
In a program coordinated by the Italian Ministry of Works, we tested in vitro four pesticides widely employed in a developed agricultural region of central Italy. The four commercial agents were chosen on the basis of their diffusion in agricultural practice, knowledge of their active principle(s), and scant availability of data concerning their toxic and genotoxic activity. The agents were Cirtoxin, Decis, Tramat Combi (TC), and Lasso Micromix (LM). All substances were tested in three in vitro systems: Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells, a metabolically competent hamster cell line (Chinese hamster epithelial liver; CHEL), and root tips of Vicia faba (VF). The cytotoxic and genotoxic end points challenged were micronuclei and root tip length (RTL) in VF and mitotic index (MI), proliferation index (PI), cell survival (CS), cell growth (CG), cell cycle length (CCL), sister chromatid exchanges, chromosomal aberrations, and single-cell gel electrophoresis, or comet assay, in CHEL and CHO cells. Tested doses ranged from the field dose up to 200x the field dose to take into account accumulation effects. On the whole, tested agents appear to induce genotoxic damage only at subtoxic or toxic doses, indicating a low clastogenic risk. MI, PI, CS, CG, RTL, and CCL appear to be the less sensitive end points, showing no effects in the presence of a clear positive response in some or all of the other tests. Using cytogenetic tests, we obtained positive results for TC and LM treatments in CHO but not in CHEL cells. These data could be accounted for by postulating a detoxifying activity exerted by this cell line. However, cytogenetic end points appear to be more sensitive than those referring to cytotoxicity.
Rasool, Q. Z.; Miller, D. J.; Bash, J. O.; Venterea, R. T.; Cooter, E. J.; Hastings, M. G.; Cohan, D. S.
The global reactive nitrogen (N) budget has increased by a factor of 2-3 from pre-industrial levels. This increase is especially pronounced in highly N fertilized agricultural regions in summer. The reactive N emissions from soil to atmosphere can be in reduced (NH3) or oxidized (NO, HONO, N2O) forms, depending on complex biogeochemical transformations of soil N reservoirs. Air quality models like CMAQ typically neglect soil emissions of HONO and N2O. Previously, soil NO emissions estimated by models like CMAQ remained parametric and inconsistent with soil NH3 emissions. Thus, there is a need to more mechanistically and consistently represent the soil N processes that lead to reactive N emissions to the atmosphere. Our updated approach estimates soil NO, HONO and N2O emissions by incorporating detailed agricultural fertilizer inputs from EPIC, and CMAQ-modeled N deposition, into the soil N pool. EPIC addresses the nitrification, denitrification and volatilization rates along with soil N pools for agricultural soils. Suitable updates to account for factors like nitrite (NO2-) accumulation not addressed in EPIC, will also be made. The NO and N2O emissions from nitrification and denitrification are computed mechanistically using the N sub-model of DAYCENT. These mechanistic definitions use soil water content, temperature, NH4+ and NO3- concentrations, gas diffusivity and labile C availability as dependent parameters at various soil layers. Soil HONO emissions found to be most probable under high NO2- availability will be based on observed ratios of HONO to NO emissions under different soil moistures, pH and soil types. The updated scheme will utilize field-specific soil properties and N inputs across differing manure management practices such as tillage. Comparison of the modeled soil NO emission rates from the new mechanistic and existing schemes against field measurements will be discussed. Our updated framework will help to predict the diurnal and daily variability
Krawczyk, Noa; Meyer, Armando; Fonseca, Maira; Lima, Jaime
Objective To investigate whether suicide risk among agricultural workers is higher in regions with heavier pesticide use and/or presence of tobacco farming. Methods Suicide mortality data were gathered from residents of the Brazilian state of Alagoas. Agricultural census data were used to arrange and classify Alagoas cities into distribution groups on the basis of variables concerning pesticide use and/or tobacco farming. Mortality odds ratio calculations were then used to compare suicide risk among agricultural and nonagricultural workers in different groups. Results Suicide risk was higher among agricultural workers than among nonagricultural workers, elevated in regions that used more pesticides, and greatest in regions that produced more tobacco. Conclusions This is one of the first studies of its kind to suggest that combined effects of pesticide and tobacco exposure may be linked to higher suicide risk among agricultural workers. PMID:25046321
The food security issue was addressed by the development of "modern agriculture" in the last century. But food safety issues and environment degradation were the consequences suffered as a result. Climate change has been recognized as the result of release of stored energy in fossil fuel into the atmosphere. Homogeneous crop varieties, machinery, pesticides and fertilizers are the foundation of uniform commodities in modern agriculture. Fossil fuels are used to manufacture fertilizers and pesticides as well as the energy source for agricultural machinery, thus characterizes modern agriculture. Bio-fuel production and the possibility of the agriculture system as a form of energy input are discussed.
Cropland is an important land cover influencing global carbon and water cycles. Variability of agricultural carbon and water fluxes depends on crop species, management practices, soil characteristics, and climatic conditions. In the context of climate change, it is critical to quantify the long-term...
Dillon, E. J.; Hennessy, T.; Cullinan, J.
Purpose: To examine the role of agricultural education and extension in influencing the adoption of best practice with regard to herd-level mastitis management. Design/Methodology/Approach: Somatic cell count (SCC) is an indicator of herd health with regard to mastitis and is negatively related to productivity and profitability. Panel data…
Pinto, Teresa; Vilela, Alice; Pinto, Andreia; Nunes, Fernando M; Cosme, Fernanda; Anjos, Rosário
Consumer demand for organic products is increasing because of their claimed health benefits. Blackberries are a rich source of polyphenols, with high antioxidant activity; nevertheless, the impact of organic versus conventional agricultural practices on its phytochemical composition is unknown. 'Loch Ness' and 'Chester Thornless' were selected as blackberry cultivars for this study because of their desired sensory and technological properties, which make them more suitable for export. 'Loch Ness' variety presented a higher amounts of polyphenols and higher antioxidant activity when compared to the 'Chester Thornless' variety. The impact of agricultural practices on the phytochemical composition of the two varieties was contradictory. Under organic agricultural practices, levels of polyphenols increased for 'Loch Ness' and decreased for 'Chester Thornless', whereas the soluble solids content increased in both varieties. These changes in composition were correlated with changes observed in the blackberries' sensory profile. The effect of agricultural practices on the blackberries' chemical and sensory profile was dependent on the variety and cannot be generalized. © 2018 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2018 Society of Chemical Industry.
Agriculture in the Mississippi-Atchafalaya River basin (MARB) is important in terms of both the national economy and the nutrients discharged to the basin and the Gulf of Mexico. Conservation practices are installed on cropland to reduce the nutrient losses. A recent study by the Conservation Effec...
In the wake of multistate outbreaks and subsequent economic cost and health causalities, food industry stakeholders formulated policies for their produce suppliers. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's guidance on Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) have been the basis for most of the industry initiated GAP certifications or audit processes. In…
Lois Wright Morton; Gabrielle E. Roesch-McNally; Adam Wilke
To be uncertain is to be unsure or have doubt. Results from a random sample survey show the majority (89.5%) of farmers in the Upper Midwest perceived there was too much uncertainty about the impacts of climate to justify changing their agricultural practices and strategies, despite scientific evidence regarding the causes and potential consequences of climate change....
We show that spatial data on soils, land use, and high-resolution topography, combined with knowledge of conservation practice effectiveness, can be leveraged to identify and assess alternatives to reduce nutrient discharge from small (HUC12) agricultural watersheds. Databases comprising soil attrib...
Snider, Anna; Kraus, Eva; Sibelet, Nicole; Bosselmann, Aske Skovmand; Faure, Guy
Purpose: This article explores how voluntary certifications influence the way cooperatives provide advisory services to their members and the influence of these services on agricultural practices. Design/Methodology/Approach: Case studies were conducted in four representative Costa Rican cooperatives interviewing twenty interviewed cooperative…
Agricultural activities throughout the Mississippi River Basin have been identified as a major source of nutrient pollution, particularly nitrogen from fertilizer application, to downstream waters including the Gulf of Mexico. Utilizing best management practices, such as low-grade weirs have been id...
Zhang, Xin; Mauzerall, Denise L; Davidson, Eric A; Kanter, David R; Cai, Ruohong
Technologies and management practices (TMPs) that reduce the application of nitrogen (N) fertilizer while maintaining crop yields can improve N use efficiency (NUE) and are important tools for meeting the dual challenges of increasing food production and reducing N pollution. However, because farmers operate to maximize their profits, incentives to implement TMPs are limited, and TMP implementation will not always reduce N pollution. Therefore, we have developed the NUE Economic and Environmental impact analytical framework (NUE) to examine the economic and environmental consequences of implementing TMPs in agriculture, with a specific focus on farmer profits, N fertilizer consumption, N losses, and cropland demand. Our analytical analyses show that impact of TMPs on farmers' economic decision-making and the environment is affected by how TMPs change the yield ceiling and the N fertilization rate at the ceiling and by how the prices of TMPs, fertilizer, and crops vary. Technologies and management practices that increase the yield ceiling appear to create a greater economic incentive for farmers than TMPs that do not but may result in higher N application rates and excess N losses. Nevertheless, the negative environmental impacts of certain TMPs could be avoided if their price stays within a range determined by TMP yield response, fertilizer price, and crop price. We use a case study on corn production in the midwestern United States to demonstrate how NUE can be applied to farmers' economic decision-making and policy analysis. Our NUE framework provides an important tool for policymakers to understand how combinations of fertilizer, crop, and TMP prices affect the possibility of achieving win-win outcomes for farmers and the environment. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.
Aizaki, Hideo; Nanseki, Teruaki; Zhou, Hui
This study examined Japanese consumers' valuation of a good agricultural practice (GAP) label on packaged milk and investigated the effect of detailed GAP information on valuation. A total of 624 Japanese consumers were asked to select their most preferred milk through an online survey. The milk was assumed to have three attributes: the GAP label, Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points certification, and price. The results showed that consumers' valuation of GAP was significantly positive. Although providing additional GAP information to a respondent who was aware of GAP and what it means had a positive effect on the consumers' valuation of GAP, provision of this information had no effect if the respondent knew about GAP either moderately or slightly, and had a negative effect if the respondent did not know about GAP at all. To increase broad consumer awareness and valuation of GAP, it is important to provide GAP information according to the requirements of consumers. © 2012 The Authors. Animal Science Journal © 2012 Japanese Society of Animal Science.
Holvoet, Kevin; Sampers, Imca; Seynnaeve, Marleen; Jacxsens, Liesbeth; Uyttendaele, Mieke
The aim of this study was to gain insight into potential differences in risk factors for microbial contamination in greenhouse versus open field lettuce production. Information was collected on sources, testing, and monitoring and if applicable, treatment of irrigation and harvest rinsing water. These data were combined with results of analysis on the levels of Escherichia coli as a fecal indicator organism and the presence of enteric bacterial pathogens on both lettuce crops and environmental samples. Enterohemorragic Escherichia coli (EHEC) PCR signals (vt1 or vt2 positive and eae positive), Campylobacter spp., and Salmonella spp. isolates were more often obtained from irrigation water sampled from open field farms (21/45, 46.7%) versus from greenhouse production (9/75, 12.0%). The open field production was shown to be more prone to fecal contamination as the number of lettuce samples and irrigation water with elevated E. coli was significantly higher. Farmers comply with generic guidelines on good agricultural practices available at the national level, but monitoring of microbial quality, and if applicable appropriateness of water treatment, or water used for irrigation or at harvest is restricted. These results indicate the need for further elaboration of specific guidelines and control measures for leafy greens with regard to microbial hazards. PMID:25546272
Holvoet, Kevin; Sampers, Imca; Seynnaeve, Marleen; Jacxsens, Liesbeth; Uyttendaele, Mieke
The aim of this study was to gain insight into potential differences in risk factors for microbial contamination in greenhouse versus open field lettuce production. Information was collected on sources, testing, and monitoring and if applicable, treatment of irrigation and harvest rinsing water. These data were combined with results of analysis on the levels of Escherichia coli as a fecal indicator organism and the presence of enteric bacterial pathogens on both lettuce crops and environmental samples. Enterohemorragic Escherichia coli (EHEC) PCR signals (vt1 or vt2 positive and eae positive), Campylobacter spp., and Salmonella spp. isolates were more often obtained from irrigation water sampled from open field farms (21/45, 46.7%) versus from greenhouse production (9/75, 12.0%). The open field production was shown to be more prone to fecal contamination as the number of lettuce samples and irrigation water with elevated E. coli was significantly higher. Farmers comply with generic guidelines on good agricultural practices available at the national level, but monitoring of microbial quality, and if applicable appropriateness of water treatment, or water used for irrigation or at harvest is restricted. These results indicate the need for further elaboration of specific guidelines and control measures for leafy greens with regard to microbial hazards.
Albaqawi, Hamdan M.; Butcon, Vincent R.; Molina, Roger R.
Objectives: To examine awareness of holistic patient care by staff nurses in the intensive care units of hospitals in the city of Hail, Saudi Arabia. Methods: A quantitative correlational study design was used to investigate relationships between intensive care nurse’s awareness of holistic practices and nurses’ latest performance review. Intensive care staff nurses (n=99) from 4 public sector hospitals in Hail were surveyed on their awareness of variables across 5 holistic domains: physiological, sociocultural, psychological, developmental, and spiritual. Data were collected between October and December 2015 using written survey, and performance evaluations obtained from the hospital administrations. Results were statistically analyzed and compared (numerical, percentage, Pearson’s correlation, Chronbach’s alpha). Results: The ICU staff nurses in Hail City were aware of the secular aspects of holistic care, and the majority had very good performance evaluations. There were no demographic trends regarding holistic awareness and nurse performance. Further, awareness of holistic care was not associated with nurse performance. Conclusion: A caring-enhancement workshop and a mentoring program for non-Saudi nurses may increase holistic care awareness and enhance its practice in the ICUs. PMID:28762435
Albaqawi, Hamdan M; Butcon, Vincent R; Molina, Roger R
To examine awareness of holistic patient care by staff nurses in the intensive care units of hospitals in the city of Hail, Saudi Arabia. Methods: A quantitative correlational study design was used to investigate relationships between intensive care nurse's awareness of holistic practices and nurses' latest performance review. Intensive care staff nurses (n=99) from 4 public sector hospitals in Hail were surveyed on their awareness of variables across 5 holistic domains: physiological, sociocultural, psychological, developmental, and spiritual. Data were collected between October and December 2015 using written survey, and performance evaluations obtained from the hospital administrations. Results were statistically analyzed and compared (numerical, percentage, Pearson's correlation, Chronbach's alpha). Results: The ICU staff nurses in Hail City were aware of the secular aspects of holistic care, and the majority had very good performance evaluations. There were no demographic trends regarding holistic awareness and nurse performance. Further, awareness of holistic care was not associated with nurse performance. Conclusion: A caring-enhancement workshop and a mentoring program for non-Saudi nurses may increase holistic care awareness and enhance its practice in the ICUs.
Fernandez, Peter; Eaker, Christopher; Swauger, Shea; Davis, Miriam L. E. Steiner
This article reports results from a survey about data management practices and attitudes sent to agriculture researchers and extension personnel at the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture (UTIA) and the College of Agricultural Sciences and Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State University. Results confirm agriculture…
Peters, Mark J.
Purpose. Administration of supplemental oxygen is common in paediatric intensive care. We explored the current practice of oxygen administration using a case vignette in paediatric intensive care units (PICU) in the united kingdom. Methods. We conducted an online survey of Paediatric Intensive Care Society members in the UK. The survey outlined a clinical scenario followed by questions on oxygenation targets for 5 common diagnoses seen in critically ill children. Results. Fifty-three paediatric intensive care unit members from 10 institutions completed the survey. In a child with moderate ventilatory requirements, 21 respondents (42%) did not follow arterial partial pressure of oxygen (PaO2) targets. In acute respiratory distress syndrome, cardiac arrest, and sepsis, there was a trend to aim for lower PaO2 as the fraction of inspired oxygen (FiO2) increased. Conversely, in traumatic brain injury and pulmonary hypertension, respondents aimed for normal PaO2 even as the FiO2 increased. Conclusions. In this sample of clinicians PaO2 targets were not commonly used. Clinicians target lower PaO2 as FiO2 increases in acute respiratory distress syndrome, cardiac arrest, and sepsis whilst targeting normal range irrespective of FiO2 in traumatic brain injury and pulmonary hypertension. PMID:27516901
Murthy, C S; Yadav, Manoj; Mohammed Ahamed, J; Laxman, B; Prawasi, R; Sesha Sai, M V R; Hooda, R S
Drought is an important global hazard, challenging the sustainable agriculture and food security of nations. Measuring agricultural drought vulnerability is a prerequisite for targeting interventions to improve and sustain the agricultural performance of both irrigated and rain-fed agriculture. In this study, crop-generic agricultural drought vulnerability status is empirically measured through a composite index approach. The study area is Haryana state, India, a prime agriculture state of the country, characterised with low rainfall, high irrigation support and stable cropping pattern. By analysing the multiyear rainfall and crop condition data of kharif crop season (June-October) derived from satellite data and soil water holding capacity and groundwater quality, nine contributing indicators were generated for 120 blocks (sub-district administrative units). Composite indices for exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity components were generated after assigning variance-based weightages to the respective input indicators. Agricultural Drought Vulnerability Index (ADVI) was developed through a linear combination of the three component indices. ADVI-based vulnerability categorisation revealed that 51 blocks are with vulnerable to very highly vulnerable status. These blocks are located in the southern and western parts of the state, where groundwater quality is saline and water holding capacity of soils is less. The ADVI map has effectively captured the spatial pattern of agricultural drought vulnerability in the state. Districts with large number of vulnerable blocks showed considerably larger variability of de-trended crop yields. Correlation analysis reveals that crop condition variability, groundwater quality and soil factors are closely associated with ADVI. The vulnerability index is useful to prioritise the blocks for implementation of long-term drought management plans. There is scope for improving the methodology by adding/fine-tuning the indicators and
Dusing, Stacey C; Van Drew, Catherine M; Brown, Shaaron E
Infants born preterm are at high risk of developmental disabilities and benefit from early developmental intervention programs. Physical therapists with neonatal expertise are ideally suited to educate parents about ways to support their infant's development in the first months of life. However, administrative policies are needed to support the therapist in providing adequate parent education in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). This administrative case report describes the process used by a team of neonatal therapists to evaluate clinical practice, determine the need for change, and develop and implement a new parent education program in the NICU. Physical therapy parent education practices were evaluated in an academic medical center with a 36-bed, level-3 NICU. Physical therapists with neonatal expertise covered multiple units within the hospital each day. A series of focus groups, a small descriptive study, and staff discussion were used to evaluate parent education practices in this academic medical center. A new parent education program was developed based on data collected and literature to improve clinical care. The new parent education model was implemented over the course of several months using overlapping initiatives. Administrative support for the change was developed through collaboration, open communication, and presentation of clinical data. In addition, this hospital-based program contributed to the development of a statewide initiative to educate parents of preterm infants about the importance of supporting development in the first months of life. A collaborative and data-driven approach to evaluating parent education practices supported the development of a new parent education practice while acknowledging the need to meet staff productivity standards and provide excellent care throughout the hospital.
Van Drew, Catherine M.; Brown, Shaaron E.
Background and Purpose Infants born preterm are at high risk of developmental disabilities and benefit from early developmental intervention programs. Physical therapists with neonatal expertise are ideally suited to educate parents about ways to support their infant's development in the first months of life. However, administrative policies are needed to support the therapist in providing adequate parent education in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). This administrative case report describes the process used by a team of neonatal therapists to evaluate clinical practice, determine the need for change, and develop and implement a new parent education program in the NICU. Case Description Physical therapy parent education practices were evaluated in an academic medical center with a 36-bed, level-3 NICU. Physical therapists with neonatal expertise covered multiple units within the hospital each day. A series of focus groups, a small descriptive study, and staff discussion were used to evaluate parent education practices in this academic medical center. A new parent education program was developed based on data collected and literature to improve clinical care. Outcomes The new parent education model was implemented over the course of several months using overlapping initiatives. Administrative support for the change was developed through collaboration, open communication, and presentation of clinical data. In addition, this hospital-based program contributed to the development of a statewide initiative to educate parents of preterm infants about the importance of supporting development in the first months of life. Discussion A collaborative and data-driven approach to evaluating parent education practices supported the development of a new parent education practice while acknowledging the need to meet staff productivity standards and provide excellent care throughout the hospital. PMID:22466024
Grota, Patti G; Meinzen, Sarah; Burleson-Rine, Penny
Healthy infection prevention practices (HIPP) include hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette, environmental cleanliness, and use of personal protective equipment. These healthy practices are most used to protect individuals against exposure to bacterial and viral infections in the workplace, as well as in the home. Most often these infection prevention behaviors in critical care units are promoted to protect the patient from healthcare-associated infections. Yet, these practices are just as important to the health of the critical care nurse. Self-health in the workplace is essential to creating a healthy workplace environment, which is the goal of many intensive care units today. The benefits of creating a healthy work environment are improvement of patient/nurse satisfaction and nurse retention. HIPP reduce the risk of the critical care nurse's exposure to microbial pathogens such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and influenza. Pathogens that cause infections may contaminate the hands, the clothing, equipment, and blood, putting the nurse at risk for unhealthy hands, unhealthy flora, and unhealthy blood. The intensive care nurse is encouraged to embrace HIPP to nurture self, as well as protect the patient.
Melo, Armindo; Pinto, Edgar; Aguiar, Ana; Mansilha, Catarina; Pinho, Olívia; Ferreira, Isabel M P L V O
A monitoring program of nitrate, nitrite, potassium, sodium, and pesticides was carried out in water samples from an intensive horticulture area in a vulnerable zone from north of Portugal. Eight collecting points were selected and water-analyzed in five sampling campaigns, during 1 year. Chemometric techniques, such as cluster analysis, principal component analysis (PCA), and discriminant analysis, were used in order to understand the impact of intensive horticulture practices on dug and drilled wells groundwater and to study variations in the hydrochemistry of groundwater. PCA performed on pesticide data matrix yielded seven significant PCs explaining 77.67% of the data variance. Although PCA rendered considerable data reduction, it could not clearly group and distinguish the sample types. However, a visible differentiation between the water samples was obtained. Cluster and discriminant analysis grouped the eight collecting points into three clusters of similar characteristics pertaining to water contamination, indicating that it is necessary to improve the use of water, fertilizers, and pesticides. Inorganic fertilizers such as potassium nitrate were suspected to be the most important factors for nitrate contamination since highly significant Pearson correlation (r = 0.691, P < 0.01) was obtained between groundwater nitrate and potassium contents. Water from dug wells is especially prone to contamination from the grower and their closer neighbor's practices. Water from drilled wells is also contaminated from distant practices.
Fernandes, Maria I D; Moreira, Isabel M P B
This research aims to identify the ethical issues perceived by intensive care nurses in their everyday practice. It also aims to understand why these situations were considered an ethical issue and what interventions/strategies have been or are expected to be developed so as to minimize them. Data were collected using a semi-structured interview with 15 nurses working at polyvalent intensive care units in 4 Portuguese hospitals, who were selected by the homogenization of multiple samples. The qualitative content analysis identified end-of-life decisions, privacy, interaction, team work, and health-care access as emerging ethical issues. Personal, team, and institutional aspects emerge as reasons behind the experience of these issues. Personal and team resources are used in and for solving these issues. Moral development and training are the most significant strategies.
de Mar Alguacil, Maria; Torrecillas, Emma; Garcia-Orenes, Fuensanta; Torres, Maria Pilar; Roldan, Antonio
The arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are a key, integral component of the stability, sustainability and functioning of ecosystems. In this study a field experiment was performed at the El Teularet-Sierra de Enguera Experimental Station (eastern Spain) to assess the influence during a 6-yr period of different agricultural practices on the diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). The management practices included residual herbicide use, ploughing, ploughing + oats, addition of oat straw mulch and a control (land abandonment). Adjacent soil under natural vegetation was used as a reference for local, high-quality soil and as a control for comparison with the agricultural soils under different management practices. The AM fungal small-subunit (SSU) rRNA genes were subjected to PCR, cloning, sequencing and phylogenetic analyses. Thirty-six different phylotypes were identified, which were grouped in four families: Glomeraceae, Paraglomeraceae, Ambisporaceae and Claroideoglomeraceae. The first results showed significant differences in the distribution of the AMF phylotypes as consequence of the difference between agricultural management practices. Thus, the lowest diversity was observed for the plot that was treated with herbicide. The management practices including ploughing and ploughing + oats had similar AMF diversity. Oat straw mulching yielded the highest number of different AMF sequence types and showed the highest diversity index. Thus, this treatment could be more suitable in sustainable soil use and therefore protection of biodiversity.
Cohen, Bevin; Saiman, Lisa; Cimiotti, Jeannie; Larson, Elaine
To determine whether hand hygiene practices differ between levels of contact with neonates; to characterize the hand hygiene practices of different types of personnel; and to compare hand hygiene practices in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) using different products. Research assistants observed staff hand hygiene practices during 38 sessions in two NICUs. Patient touches were categorized as touching within the neonates' environment but only outside the Isolette (Level 1), touching within the Isolette but not the neonate directly (Level 2) or directly touching the neonate (Level 3). Hand hygiene practices for each touch were categorized into five groups: cleaned hands and new gloves; uncleaned hands and new gloves; used gloves; clean hands and no gloves; uncleaned hands and no gloves. Research assistants observed 1472 touches. On average each neonate or his or her immediate environment was touched 78 times per shift. Nurses (P = 0.001), attending physicians (P = 0.02) and physicians-in-training (P = 0.03) were more likely to use appropriate practices during Level 3 touches, but only 22.8% of all touches were with cleaned and/or newly gloved hands. The mean number of direct touches by staff members with cleaned hands was greater in the NICU using an alcohol-based hand rub than in the NICU using antimicrobial soap (P < 0.01). Hand hygiene was suboptimal in this high risk setting; administrative action and improved products may be needed to assure acceptable practice. In this study use of an alcohol-based product was associated with significantly improved hand hygiene and should be encouraged, as recommended in the new CDC hand hygiene guideline.
Lamm, Alexa J.; Taylor, Melissa R.; Lamm, Kevan W.
Water use has become increasingly contentious as the population grows and water resources become scarcer. Recent media coverage of agricultural water use has brought negative attention potentially influencing public and decision makers' attitudes towards agriculture. Negative perceptions could result in uninformed decisions being made that impact…
Ever since the new curriculum was implemented, Sichuan Agricultural University that is characterized by agricultural science has conducted ideological and political teaching reform, explored a basic route to integrate scientific outlook on development into theoretical teaching and initially formed a human-oriented interactive three-dimensional…
Malekian, Atefe; Hayati, Dariush; Aarts, Noelle
Conceptions of agricultural water security are conditioned by larger understandings of being and reality. It is still unclear what such understandings mean for perspectives on water security in general and on causes and solutions related to perceived water security risks and problems in agricultural sector in particular. Based on a systematic literature review, three conceptualizations of water security, related to different paradigms, are presented. Also the consequences of such conceptualizations for determining research objectives, research activities, and research outcomes on agricultural water security are discussed. The results showed that agricultural water security from a positivist paradigm referred to tangible and measurable water-related hazards and threats, such as floods and droughts, pollution, and so forth. A constructivist approach to agricultural water security, constituted by a process of interaction and negotiation, pointed at perceptions of water security of farmers and other stakeholders involved in agricultural sector. A critical approach to agricultural water security focused on the processes of securing vulnerable farmers and others from wider political, social, and natural impediments to sufficient water supplies. The conclusions of the study suggest that paradigms, underlying approaches should be expressed, clarified, and related to one another in order to find optimal and complementary ways to study water security issues in agricultural sector.
Pesson, Lynn L.
The focus of this study was to procure data about adoption behavior of Malaysian smallholders (farmers) that would be useful in the instructional program in extension education at the College of Agriculture, Malaysia. Students interviewed 76 persons in a rural village of two hundred families, all engaged in agriculture. The major sources of income…
Larson, Elaine L; Ferng, Yu-Hui; McLoughlin, Jennifer Wong; Wang, Shuang; Morse, Stephen S
Although upper respiratory infections (URIs) take a major social and economic toll, little research has been conducted to assess the impact of educational interventions on knowledge, attitudes, and practices of community members regarding prevention and treatment of URIs, particularly among recently immigrated urban Latinos who may not be reached by the mainstream healthcare system. The objective of this study was to assess the impact of a culturally appropriate, home-based educational intervention on the knowledge, attitudes, and practices regarding prevention and treatment of URIs among urban Latinos. Using a pretest-posttest design, Spanish-language educational materials available from sources such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were adapted based on feedback from community focus groups and provided to households during an in-person home visit every 2 months (generally three to four visits). Outcome data regarding knowledge, attitudes, and practices were collected in home-based interviews using an 85-item instrument adapted and pilot tested from three other validated instruments. Nonparametric and multiple linear regression analyses were used to summarize data and identify predictors of knowledge scores. Four hundred twenty-two households had complete data at baseline and 6 months. Knowledge and attitude scores were improved significantly, and use of alcohol hand sanitizer and rates of influenza vaccine were increased significantly (all p <.01). Although this home-based educational intervention was successful in improving knowledge, attitudes, and self-reported practices among urban Latinos regarding prevention and treatment of URIs, further research is needed to determine the cost-effectiveness of such a person-intensive intervention, the long-term outcomes, and whether less intensive interventions might be equally effective.
Coughlin, Mary; Gibbins, Sharyn; Hoath, Steven
Title Core measures for developmentally supportive care in neonatal intensive care units: theory, precedence and practice. Aim This paper is a discussion of evidence-based core measures for developmental care in neonatal intensive care units. Background Inconsistent definition, application and evaluation of developmental care have resulted in criticism of its scientific merit. The key concept guiding data organization in this paper is the United States of America’s Joint Commission’s concept of ‘core measures’ for evaluating and accrediting healthcare organizations. This concept is applied to five disease- and procedure-independent measures based on the Universe of Developmental Care model. Data sources Electronically accessible, peer reviewed studies on developmental care published in English were culled for data supporting the selected objective core measures between 1978 and 2008. The quality of evidence was based on a structured predetermined format that included three independent reviewers. Systematic reviews and randomized control trials were considered the strongest level of evidence. When unavailable, cohort, case control, consensus statements and qualitative methods were considered the strongest level of evidence for a particular clinical issue. Discussion Five core measure sets for evidence-based developmental care were evaluated: (1) protected sleep, (2) pain and stress assessment and management, (3) developmental activities of daily living, (4) family-centred care, and (5) the healing environment. These five categories reflect recurring themes that emerged from the literature review regarding developmentally supportive care and quality caring practices in neonatal populations. This practice model provides clear metrics for nursing actions having an impact on the hospital experience of infant-family dyads. Conclusion Standardized disease-independent core measures for developmental care establish minimum evidence-based practice expectations and
Sherfy, M.H.; Anteau, M.J.; Bishop, A.A.
Nebraska's Central Platte River Valley (CPRV) is a major spring-staging area for migratory birds. Over 6 million ducks, geese, and sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis) stage there en route to tundra, boreal forest, and prairie breeding habitats, storing nutrients for migration and reproduction by consuming primarily corn remaining in fields after harvest (hereafter residual corn). In springs 2005-2007, we measured residual corn density in randomly selected harvested cornfields during early (n=188) and late migration (n=143) periods. We estimated the mean density of residual corn for the CPRV and examined the influence of agricultural practices (post-harvest field management) and migration period on residual corn density. During the early migration period, residual corn density was greater in idle harvested fields than any other treatments of fields (42%, 48%, 53%, and 92% more than grazed, grazed and mulched, mulched, and tilled fields, respectively). Depletion of residual corn from early to late migration did not differ among post-harvest treatments but was greatest during the year when overall corn density was lowest (2006). Geometric mean early-migration residual corn density for the CPRV in 2005-2007 (42.4 kg/ha; 95% CI=35.2-51.5 kg/ha) was markedly lower than previously published estimates, indicating that there has been a decrease in abundance of residual corn available to waterfowl during spring staging. Increases in harvest efficiency have been implicated as a cause for decreasing corn densities since the 1970s. However, our data show that post-harvest management of cornfields also can substantially influence the density of residual corn remaining in fields during spring migration. Thus, managers may be able to influence abundance of high-energy foods for spring-staging migratory birds in the CPRV through programs that influence post-harvest management of cornfields. ?? 2011 The Wildlife Society.
Hines, C J; Deddens, J A; Coble, J; Alavanja, M C R
Fungicides are routinely applied to deciduous tree fruits for disease management. Seventy-four private orchard applicators enrolled in the Agricultural Health Study participated in the Orchard Fungicide Exposure Study in 2002-2003. During 144 days of observation, information was obtained on chemicals applied and applicator mixing, application, personal protective, and hygiene practices. At least half of the applicators had orchards with <100 trees. Air blast was the most frequent application method used (55%), followed by hand spray (44%). Rubber gloves were the most frequently worn protective equipment (68% mix; 59% apply), followed by respirators (45% mix; 49% apply), protective outerwear (36% mix; 37% apply), and rubber boots (35% mix; 36% apply). Eye protection was worn while mixing and applying on only 35% and 41% of the days, respectively. Bivariate analyses were performed using repeated logistic or repeated linear regression. Mean duration of mixing, pounds of captan applied, total acres sprayed, and number of tank mixes sprayed were greater for air blast than for hand spray (p < 0.05). Spraying from a tractor/vehicle without an enclosed cab was associated with wearing some type of coverall (p < 0.05). Applicators often did not wash their hands after mixing (77%), a finding not explained by glove use. Glove use during mixing was associated with younger age, while wearing long-sleeve shirts was associated with older age (p < 0.05 each). Self-reported unusually high fungicide exposures were more likely on days applicators performed repairs (p < 0.05). These data will be useful for evaluating fungicide exposure determinants among orchard applicators.
Horner, Ronnie D; Matthews, Gerald; Yi, Michael S
Physician work intensity, although a major factor in determining the payment for medical services, may potentially affect patient health outcomes including quality of care and patient safety, and has implications for the redesign of medical practice to improve health care delivery. However, to date, there has been minimal research regarding the relationship between physician work intensity and either patient outcomes or the organization and management of medical practices. A theoretical model on physician work intensity will provide useful guidance to such inquiries. To describe an initial conceptual model to facilitate further investigations of physician work intensity. A conceptual model of physician work intensity is described using as its theoretical base human performance science relating to work intensity. For each of the theoretical components, we present relevant empirical evidence derived from a review of the current literature. The proposed model specifies that the level of work intensity experienced by a physician is a consequence of the physician performing the set of tasks (ie, demands) relating to a medical service. It is conceptualized that each medical service has an inherent level of intensity that is experienced by a physician as a function of factors relating to the physician, patient, and medical practice environment. The proposed conceptual model provides guidance to researchers as to the factors to consider in studies of how physician work intensity impacts patient health outcomes and how work intensity may be affected by proposed policies and approaches to health care delivery.
Hernandez, Zulimar; María Álvarez, Ana; Carral, Pilar; de Figueiredo, Tomas; Almendros, Gonzalo
Although C stabilization mechanisms in agricultural soils are still controversial , a series of overlapped pathways has been suggested  such as: i) insolubilization of low molecular weight precursors of soil organic matter (SOM) with reactive minerals through physical and chemical bonding, ii) selective accumulation of biosynthetic substances which are recalcitrant because of its inherent chemical composition, and iii) preservation and furter diagenetic transformation of particulate SOM entrapped within resistant microaggregates, where diffusion of soil enzymes is largely hampered. In some environments where carbohydrate and N compounds are not readily biodegraded, e.g., with water saturated micropores, an ill-known C stabilization pathway may involve the formation of Maillard's reaction products . In all cases, these pathways converge in the formation of recalcitrant macromolecular substances, sharing several properties with the humic acid (HA) fraction . In template forests, the selective preservation and further microbial reworking of plant biomass has been identified as a prevailing mechanism in the accumulation of recalcitrant SOM forms . However, in volcanic ash soils with intense organomineral interactions, condensation reactions of low molecular weight precursors with short-range minerals may be the main mechanism . In order to shed some light about the effect of agricultural management on soil C stabilization processes on volcanic ash soils, the chemical composition of HA and some structural proxies of SOM informing on its origin and potential resistance to biodegradation, were examined in 30 soils from Canary Islands (Spain) by visible, infrared (IR) and 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopies, elementary analysis and pyrolytic techniques. The results of multivariate treatments, suggested at least three simultaneous C stabilization biogeochemical trends: i) diagenetic alteration of plant biomacromolecules in soils receiving
Borkowska, Marta; Labeau, Sonia; Schepens, Tom; Vandijck, Dominique; Van de Vyver, Katrien; Christiaens, Daphné; Lizy, Christelle; Blackwood, Bronagh; Blot, Stijn I
Sedation and analgesia have an important impact on the outcome of patients treated with mechanical ventilation. International guidelines recommend use of sedation protocols to ensure best patient care. To determine the sedation practice of intensive care nurses weaning adults from mechanical ventilation. A cross-sectional survey with a self-administered questionnaire was used to determine sedation practices of Flemish critical care nurses during weaning. Consensus on content validity was achieved through a Delphi procedure among experts. Data were collected during the 32nd Annual Congress of the Flemish Society of Critical Care Nurses in Ghent, Belgium, December 2014. A total of 342 nurses were included in the study. Of these, 43.7% had a sedation protocol in their unit that was used by 61.8% of the respondents. Sedation protocols were more often available ( P < .001) in academic hospitals (72%) than in general hospitals (41.5%). Sedatives were administered via continuous infusion with bolus doses if needed (81%). Level of sedation was assessed every 2 hours (56%), mostly via the Richmond Agitation-Sedation Scale (59.1%). Daily interruption of sedation was used by 16.5% of respondents. The biggest barriers to daily interruption were patient comfort (49.4%) and fear of respiratory worsening (46.6%). A considerable discrepancy exists between international recommendations and actual sedation practices. Standardization of sedation practices across different institutions on a regional and national level may improve the quality of care. ©2018 American Association of Critical-Care Nurses.
Guimarães, H; Rocha, G; Vasconcellos, G; Proença, E; Carreira, M L; Sossai, M R; Morais, B; Martins, I; Rodrigues, T; Severo, M
With the advent of surfactant, prenatal corticosteroids (PNC) and advances in technology, the survival rate of extremely low birth weight (ELBW) infants has improved dramatically. Rates of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) vary widely among neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) and many studies using multiple interventions have shown some improvement in BPD rates. Implementing potentially better practices to reduce BPD has been an effort made over the last few decades. To compare five Portuguese NICUs in terms of clinical practices in very low birth weight (VLBW) infants, in order to develop better practices to prevent BPD. 256 preterm neonates, gestational age (GA) <30 weeks and/or birthweight (BW) <1250g admitted to five Portuguese NICUs (centers 1 to 5) between 1st January 2004 and 31st December 2006, were studied. VLBW infants with major malformations, grade IV intraventricular haemorrhage in the first week of life and metabolic or neuromuscular disease were excluded. BPD was defined as oxygen dependency at 36 weeks of postconceptional age. We considered a practice to be improved as clinically significant whenever a decrease greater than 10% in the prevalence of BPD adjusted for the practice, GA and BW was achieved compared to BPD prevalence adjusted only for GA and BW. The overall prevalence of BPD was 12.9%. Our results revealed that PNC use should be improved in centers 4 and 5; fluid policy in center 4; oxygen therapy and sepsis prevention in centers 1 and 2. Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) treatment should be improved in center 2. The implementation of potentially better practices to reduce lung injury in neonates in Portuguese NICUs, according to each NICU, must be addressed to increase the prescription of PNC, to use a lower FiO2, to be careful with fluid administration in the first weeks of life and to prevent PDA and sepsis. It is necessary to follow guidelines, recommendations or protocols to improve quality in the prevention of BPD.
Goyenola, Guillermo; Meerhof, Mariane; Teixeira de Mello, Franco; González-Bergonzoni, Ivan; Graeber, Daniel; Vidal, Nicolas; Mazzeo, Nestor; Ovesen, Niels; Jeppesen, Erik; Thodsen, Hans; Kronvang, Brian
Climate is changing towards more extreme conditions all over the world. At the same time, land use is becoming more intensive worldwide and particularly in many developing countries, whereas several developed countries are trying to reduce the impacts of intensive agricultural production and lower the excessive nutrient loading and eutrophication symptoms in water bodies. In 2009, we initiated a comparative research project between the subtropical region (Uruguay) and the temperate region (Denmark) to compare the hydrology and nutrient fluxes in paired micro-catchments with extensive production or intensive agriculture. The four selected streams drained catchments of similar size (7 to 19 km2). We have established similarly equipped monitoring stations in the four micro-catchments in spring (November 2009, Uruguay; March 2010, Denmark) to monitor the effects of land use and agriculture intensity on stream hydrology and nutrient concentrations and fluxes under different climate conditions. We have conducted high frequency measurements in the four lowland streams with underwater probes (turbidity, pH, conductivity and oxygen measured every 15 minutes), fortnight grab sampling of water and automatic sampling of composite water samples for nutrient analysis (total and dissolved nitrogen and phosphorus; sampled every four hours and accumulated fortnightly). Moreover, water level and meteorological information (precipitation, air temperature, global radiation, humidity) has been recorded every 10 minutes and instantaneous flow measurements have been conducted at regular intervals, to facilitate the calculation of instantaneous discharge from continuous records of water level (stage-discharge relationships). We will show results of ca. 2 years from this comparative study between Uruguay and Denmark, and the importance of differences in climate and land use will be discussed.
Rodrigues, Elisa da Conceição; Cunha, Sueli Rezende; Gomes, Romeu
Intravenous Therapy (IVT) is an important item among the necessary technologies for the survival of high-risk new-born babies. However, it is also a source of pain, stress and risk of serious complications. This article aims to assess the meanings of IVT as ascribed by care teams and to discuss the reflection of such meanings on the attention to new-born babies. The article, with a theoretical referential in Cultural Anthropology, presents an ethnographic case study carried out in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of municipal administration in Rio de Janeiro. Subjects were nine nurses, four doctors, and three nurse assistants. Data collection was carried out with a semi-structured interview and participative observation. The qualitative analysis was performed using the method of interpretation of the senses. Meanings, interweaved with the cultural network, showed that IVT practice is often reduced to peripheral puncture techniques, bringing on a series of complications for high risk new-born babies and intense emotional waste for the professional team and the family. Re-signification of IVT practice will only be possible with a critical analysis of the cultural patterns it is now based on.
Clarke, T; Mackinnon, E; England, K; Burr, G; Fowler, S; Fairservice, L
In view of market-driven health-care policies and the move to greater efficiencies within the health-care system, the cost of nursing care is being increasingly scrutinised. Different overseas practices are commonly cited as justification for changing practices within Australia. This study is based on a review of the literature on intensive care nurse staffing requirements in Australasia; specifically, New South Wales, the United States (US) and, to a lesser extent, Europe. It was found that looking to the US for cost-cutting strategies in intensive care units (ICUs) is based on a false premise: that we are comparing like with like. ICUs in the US have a different historical trajectory and culture, service wider constituencies, have technicians and unregistered personnel providing nursing care and do not provide demonstrably better outcomes or significant cost savings. Research indicates that continuous nursing care by trained professionals provides the best outcomes. If costs must be cut, technology, pharmaceuticals and laboratory tests should be targeted. Further, a greater commitment to the development of a 'progressive patient care' model in hospital planning is required, in order to establish or consolidate an intermediate level of nursing care between the ward and the ICU. Programs aiming to improve and continuously monitor patient care, such as adverse event monitoring, the prevention of unplanned extubation and facilitation of early extubation, should be instituted, as these have been shown to not only reduce ICU costs but also improve patient outcomes.
Purpose: Women living or working on farms may be exposed to pesticides from direct occupational use of agricultural pesticides and from non-occupational pathways, such as take-home exposure from skin, clothes and shoes of farmworkers, drift from nearby fields, and pest treatments...
Grids of perforated pipe buried beneath many poorly drained agricultural fields in the Midwestern U.S. are believed to “short circuit” pools of nitrate-laden soil water and shallow groundwater directly into streams that eventually discharge to the Mississippi River. Although much is known about the ...
One of the most critical stages of conversion of agricultural waste biomass into biofuels employs hydrolysis reactions between highly specific enzymes and matching substrates (e.g. corn stover cellulose with cellulase) that produce soluble sugars, which then could be converted into ethanol. Despite ...
McCarthy, Kathleen A.; Johnson, Henry M.
The role of irrigation and artificial drainage in the hydrologic cycle and the transport of solutes in a small agricultural catchment in central Washington's Yakima Valley were explored using hydrologic, chemical, isotopic, age-dating, and mineralogical data from several environmental compartments, including stream water, ground water, overland flow, and streambed pore water. A conceptual understanding of catchment hydrology and solute transport was developed and an inverse end-member mixing analysis was used to further explore the effects of agriculture in this small catchment. The median concentrations of major solutes and nitrates were similar for the single field site and for the catchment outflow site, indicating that the net effects of transport processes for these constituents were similar at both scales. However, concentrations of nutrients were different at the two sites, suggesting that field-scale variations in agricultural practices as well as nearstream and instream biochemical processes are important components of agricultural chemical transformation and transport in this catchment. This work indicates that irrigation coupled with artificial drainage networks may exacerbate the ecological effects of agricultural runoff by increasing direct connectivity between fields and streams and minimizing potentially mitigating effects (denitrification and dilution, for example) of longer subsurface pathways.
Jones, Jay E.; Kroll, Andrew J.; Giovanini, Jack; Duke, Steven D.; Ellis, Tana M.; Betts, Matthew G.
Background Managers of landscapes dedicated to forest commodity production require information about how practices influence biological diversity. Individual species and communities may be threatened if management practices truncate or simplify forest age classes that are essential for reproduction and survival. For instance, the degradation and loss of complex diverse forest in young age classes have been associated with declines in forest-associated Neotropical migrant bird populations in the Pacific Northwest, USA. These declines may be exacerbated by intensive forest management practices that reduce hardwood and broadleaf shrub cover in order to promote growth of economically valuable tree species in plantations. Methodology and Principal Findings We used a Bayesian hierarchical model to evaluate relationships between avian species richness and vegetation variables that reflect stand management intensity (primarily via herbicide application) on 212 tree plantations in the Coast Range, Oregon, USA. Specifically, we estimated the influence of broadleaf hardwood vegetation cover, which is reduced through herbicide applications, on bird species richness and individual species occupancy. Our model accounted for imperfect detection. We used average predictive comparisons to quantify the degree of association between vegetation variables and species richness. Both conifer and hardwood cover were positively associated with total species richness, suggesting that these components of forest stand composition may be important predictors of alpha diversity. Estimates of species richness were 35–80% lower when imperfect detection was ignored (depending on covariate values), a result that has critical implications for previous efforts that have examined relationships between forest composition and species richness. Conclusion and Significance Our results revealed that individual and community responses were positively associated with both conifer and hardwood cover. In our
Jones, Jay E; Kroll, Andrew J; Giovanini, Jack; Duke, Steven D; Ellis, Tana M; Betts, Matthew G
Managers of landscapes dedicated to forest commodity production require information about how practices influence biological diversity. Individual species and communities may be threatened if management practices truncate or simplify forest age classes that are essential for reproduction and survival. For instance, the degradation and loss of complex diverse forest in young age classes have been associated with declines in forest-associated Neotropical migrant bird populations in the Pacific Northwest, USA. These declines may be exacerbated by intensive forest management practices that reduce hardwood and broadleaf shrub cover in order to promote growth of economically valuable tree species in plantations. We used a Bayesian hierarchical model to evaluate relationships between avian species richness and vegetation variables that reflect stand management intensity (primarily via herbicide application) on 212 tree plantations in the Coast Range, Oregon, USA. Specifically, we estimated the influence of broadleaf hardwood vegetation cover, which is reduced through herbicide applications, on bird species richness and individual species occupancy. Our model accounted for imperfect detection. We used average predictive comparisons to quantify the degree of association between vegetation variables and species richness. Both conifer and hardwood cover were positively associated with total species richness, suggesting that these components of forest stand composition may be important predictors of alpha diversity. Estimates of species richness were 35-80% lower when imperfect detection was ignored (depending on covariate values), a result that has critical implications for previous efforts that have examined relationships between forest composition and species richness. Our results revealed that individual and community responses were positively associated with both conifer and hardwood cover. In our system, patterns of bird community assembly appear to be associated with
Poorly managed agricultural watersheds may be one of the most important contributors to high levels of bacterial and sediment loadings in surface waters. We investigated two cattle farms with differing management schemes to compare how physicochemical and meteorological parameter...
Agroecosystem models and conservation planning tools require spatially and temporally explicit input data about agricultural management operations. The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service is developing a Land Management and Operation Database (LMOD) which contains potential model input, howe...
Edwards, Simon G
Fusarium head blight (FHB) of small grain cereals and ear rot in maize are significant diseases across the world. Infection can not only result in reduced yield as a result of shrunken grains but also result in reduced milling and malting quality and the contamination of grains with mycotoxins. Mycotoxins are hazardous to animal and human health. Therefore, guidelines and legislation are in place, or under consideration, in most countries to protect consumers and animal welfare. As fusarium mycotoxins are produced within the growing crop, it is important to understand how agricultural practices affect mycotoxin contamination of grain. Such information could then be used to determine guidelines on "Good Agricultural Practice" (GAP) to minimise the mycotoxin contamination of cereal products. Evidence is provided to show the importance of choice of cultivar, crop rotation, soil cultivation, fertiliser and the chemical and biological control of insects, weeds and fungi.
Berney, Susan C; Harrold, Megan; Webb, Steven A; Seppelt, Ian; Patman, Shane; Thomas, Peter J; Denehy, Linda
To develop a comprehensive set of items describing physiotherapy mobilisation practices for critically ill patients, and to document current practices in intensive care units in Australia and New Zealand, focusing on patients having > 48 hours of mechanical ventilation. Prospective, observational, multicentre, single-day, point prevalence study. All patients in 38 Australian and New Zealand ICUs at 10 am on one of three designated days in 2009 and 2010. Demographic data, admission diagnosis and mobilisation practices that had occurred in the previous 24 hours. 514 patients were enrolled, with 498 complete datasets. Mean age was 59.2 years (SD, 16.7 years) and 45% were mechanically ventilated. Mobilisation activities were classified into five categories that were not mutually exclusive: 140 patients (28%) completed an in-bed exercise regimen, 93 (19%) sat over the side of the bed, 182 (37%) sat out of bed, 124 (25%) stood and 89 (18%) walked. Predefined adverse events occurred on 24 occasions (5%). No patient requiring mechanical ventilation sat out of bed or walked. On the study day, 391 patients had been in ICU for > 48 hours. There were 384 complete datasets available for analysis and, of these, 332 patients (86%) were not walked. Of those not walked, 76 (23%) were in the ICU for ≥ 7 days. Patient mobilisation was shown to be low in a single-day point prevalence study. Future observational studies are required to confirm the results.
Ray, Uday Sankar; Pathak, Anjana; Tomer, Omveer Singh
The aim of this study was to critically observe the energy expenditure, exercise intensity and respiratory changes during a full yoga practice session. Oxygen consumption (V˙O2), carbon dioxide output (V˙CO2), pulmonary ventilation (V˙E), respiratory rate (Fr) and tidal volume (VT), were measured in 16 physical posture (asanas), five yoga breathing maneuvers (BM) and two types of meditation. Twenty male (age 27.3 ± 3.5 years, height 166.6 ± 5.4 cm and body weight 58.8 ± 9.6 kg) yoga instructors were studied. Their maximal oxygen consumption (V˙O2max) was recorded. The exercise intensity in asanas was expressed in percentage V˙O2max . In asanas, exercise intensity varied from 9.9 to 26.5% of V˙O2max . Highest energy cost was 3.02 kcal min−1. In BM highest V˙E was 53.7 ± 15.5 l min−1. VT was 0.97 ± 0.59, 1.41 ± 1.27 and 1.28 ± l/breath with corresponding Fr of 14.0 ± 5.3, 10.0 ± 6.35, 10.0 ± 5.8 breaths/min. Average energy expenditure in asanas, BM and meditation were 2.29, 1.91 and 1.37 kcal min−1, respectively. Metabolic rate was generally in the range of 1-2 metabolic equivalents (MET) except in three asanas where it was >2 MET. V˙O2 was 0.27 ± 0.05 and 0.24 ± 0.04 l min−1 in meditation and Shavasana, respectively. Although yogic practices are low intensity exercises within lactate threshold, physical performance improvement is possible owing to both better economy of breathing by BM and also by improvement in cardiovascular reserve. Other factors such as psycho-physiological and better relaxation may contribute to it. PMID:21799675
Anteau, Michael J.; Sherfy, Mark H.; Bishop, Andrew A.
Millions of ducks, geese, and sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis; hereafter cranes) stop in the Central Platte River Valley (CPRV) of Nebraska to store nutrients for migration and reproduction by consuming corn remaining in fields after harvest. We examined factors that influence use of cornfields by cranes and geese (all mid-continent species combined; e.g., Anser, Chen, and Branta spp.) because it is a key step to efficient conservation planning aimed at ensuring that adequate food resources are available to migratory birds stopping in the CPRV. Distance to night-time roost site, segment of the CPRV (west to east), and agricultural practices (post-harvest treatment of cornfields: idle, grazed, mulched, mulched and grazed, and tilled) were the most important and influential variables in our models for geese and cranes. Probability of cornfield use by geese and cranes decreased with increasing distance from the closest potential roosting site. The use of cornfields by geese increased with the density of corn present there during the early migration period, but field use by cranes appeared not to be influenced by early migration corn density. However, probability of cornfield use by cranes did increase with the amount of wet grassland habitat within 4.8 km of the field. Geese were most likely to use fields that were tilled and least likely to use fields that were mulched and grazed. Cranes were most likely to use fields that were mulched and least likely to use fields that were tilled, but grazing appeared not to influence the likelihood of field use by cranes. Geese were more likely to use cornfields in western segments of the CPRV, but cranes were more likely to use cornfields in eastern segments. Our data suggest that managers could favor crane use of fields and reduce direct competition with geese by reducing fall and spring tilling and increasing mulching. Moreover, crane conservation efforts would be most beneficial if they were focused in the eastern portions
Anteau, M.J.; Sherfy, M.H.; Bishop, A.A.
Millions of ducks, geese, and sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis; hereafter cranes) stop in the Central Platte River Valley (CPRV) of Nebraska to store nutrients for migration and reproduction by consuming corn remaining in fields after harvest. We examined factors that influence use of cornfields by cranes and geese (all mid-continent species combined; e.g., Anser, Chen, and Branta spp.) because it is a key step to efficient conservation planning aimed at ensuring that adequate food resources are available to migratory birds stopping in the CPRV. Distance to night-time roost site, segment of the CPRV (west to east), and agricultural practices (post-harvest treatment of cornfields: idle, grazed, mulched, mulched and grazed, and tilled) were the most important and influential variables in our models for geese and cranes. Probability of cornfield use by geese and cranes decreased with increasing distance from the closest potential roosting site. The use of cornfields by geese increased with the density of corn present there during the early migration period, but field use by cranes appeared not to be influenced by early migration corn density. However, probability of cornfield use by cranes did increase with the amount of wet grassland habitat within 4.8 km of the field. Geese were most likely to use fields that were tilled and least likely to use fields that were mulched and grazed. Cranes were most likely to use fields that were mulched and least likely to use fields that were tilled, but grazing appeared not to influence the likelihood of field use by cranes. Geese were more likely to use cornfields in western segments of the CPRV, but cranes were more likely to use cornfields in eastern segments. Our data suggest that managers could favor crane use of fields and reduce direct competition with geese by reducing fall and spring tilling and increasing mulching. Moreover, crane conservation efforts would be most beneficial if they were focused in the eastern portions
Hively, W. Dean; Devereux, Olivia H.; Claggett, Peter
In response to the Executive Order for Chesapeake Bay Protection and Restoration (E.O. #13508, May 12, 2009), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) took on the task of acquiring and assessing agricultural conservation practice data records for U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs, and transferred those datasets in aggregated format to State jurisdictional agencies for use in reporting conservation progress to the Chesapeake Bay Program Partnership (CBP Partnership). Under the guidelines and regulations that have been developed to protect and restore water-quality in the Chesapeake Bay, the six State jurisdictions that fall within the Chesapeake Bay watershed are required to report their progress in promoting agricultural conservation practices to the CBP Partnership on an annual basis. The installation and adoption of agricultural best management practices is supported by technical and financial assistance from both Federal and State conservation programs. The farm enrollment data for USDA conservation programs are confidential, but agencies can obtain access to the privacy-protected data if they are established as USDA Conservation Cooperators. The datasets can also be released to the public if they are first aggregated to protect farmer privacy. In 2012, the USGS used its Conservation Cooperator status to obtain implementation data for conservation programs sponsored by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) for farms within the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Three jurisdictions (Delaware, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia) used the USGS-provided aggregated dataset to report conservation progress in 2012, whereas the remaining three jurisdictions (Maryland, New York, and Virginia) used jurisdictional Conservation Cooperator Agreements to obtain privacy-protected data directly from the USDA. This report reviews the status of conservation data sharing between the USDA and the various jurisdictions, discusses the
Taheri, Kamal; Taheri, Milad; Parise, Mario
Bare and covered karst areas, with developed karstic aquifers, cover 35 percent of the Kermanshah province in western Iran. These aquifers are the vital sources for drinking and agricultural water supplies. Over the past decade, intensive groundwater use (exploitation) for irrigation imposed a significant impact on the carbonate environments. The huge amount of groundwater over-exploitations has been carried out and still goes on by local farmers in the absence of appropriate governance monitoring control. Increasing in water demands, for more intense crop production, is an important driving force toward groundwater depletion in alluvial aquifers. Progressive groundwater over-exploitations from underlying carbonate rocks have led to dramatic drawdown in alluvial aquifers and deep karst water tables. Detecting new sources of groundwater extractions and prohibiting the karst water utilization for agricultural use could be the most effective strategy to manage the sustainability of covered karst aquifers. Anthropogenic pressures on covered karst aquifers have magnified the drought impacts and caused dryness of most of the karst springs and deep wells. In this study, the combination of geophysical and geological studies was used to estimate the most intensively exploited agricultural zones of Islam Abad plain in the southwestern Kermanshah province using GIS. The results show that in the past decade a great number of deep wells were drilled through the overburden alluvial aquifer and reached the deep karst water resources. However, the difficulties involved in monitoring deep wells in covered karst aquifer were the main cause of karst water depletion. Overexploitation from both alluvial and karst aquifers is the main reason for drying out the Arkawazi, Sharafshah, Gawrawani karst springs, and the karst drinking water wells 1, 3 and 5 of Islam Abad city. Karst spring landscape destructions, fresh water supply deficit for inhabitants, decreasing of tourism and
Coates, Peter S.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Howe, Kristy B.; Fleskes, Joseph P.; Dwight, Ian; Connelly, Daniel P.; Meshriy, Matt G.; Gardner, Scott C.
Declines in bird populations in agricultural regions of North America and Europe have been attributed to agricultural industrialization, increases in use of agrochemical application, and increased predation related to habitat modification. Based on count data compiled from Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) from 1974 to 2012, Christmas Bird Count (CBC) collected from 1914 to 2013, and hunter data from Annual Game Take Survey (AGTS) for years 1948–2010, ring-necked pheasants (Phasianus colchicus) in California have experienced substantial declines in agricultural environments. Using a modeling approach that integrates all three forms of survey data into a joint response abundance index, we found pheasant abundance was related to the amount of harvested and unharvested crop land, types of crops produced, amount of total pesticide applied, minimum temperature, precipitation, and numbers of avian competitors and predators. Specifically, major changes in agricultural practices over the last three decades were associated with declines in pheasant numbers and likely reflected widespread loss of habitat. For example, increases in cropland were associated with increased pheasant abundance during early years of study but this effect decreased through time, such that no association in recent years was evidenced. A post hoc analysis revealed that crops beneficial to pheasant abundance (e.g., barley) have declined substantially in recent decades and were replaced by less advantageous crops (e.g., nut trees). An additional analysis using a restricted data set (1990–2013) indicated recent negative impacts on pheasant numbers associated with land use practices were also associated with relatively high levels of pesticide application. Our results may provide valuable information for management policies aimed at reducing widespread declines in pheasant populations in California and may be applicable to other avian species within agricultural settings. Furthermore, this general
Christensen, Robert D; Carroll, Patrick D; Josephson, Cassandra D
Transfusions to neonates convey both benefits and risks, and evidence is needed to guide wise use. Such evidence is accumulating, but more information is needed to generate sound evidence-based practices. We sought to analyze published information on nine aspects of transfusion practice in neonatal intensive care units. We assigned 'categories of evidence' and 'recommendations' using the format of the United States Preventive Services Task Force of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The nine practices studied were: (1) delayed clamping or milking of the umbilical cord at preterm delivery - recommended, high/substantial A; (2) drawing the initial blood tests from cord/placental blood from very low birth weight (VLBW, <1,500 g) infants at delivery - recommended, moderate/moderate B; (3) limiting phlebotomy losses of VLBW infants - recommended, moderate/substantial B; (4) selected use of erythropoiesis-stimulating agents to prevent transfusions - recommended, moderate/moderate-moderate/small B, C; (5) using platelet mass, rather than platelet count, in platelet transfusion decisions - recommended, moderate/small C; (6) permitting the platelet count to fall to <20,000/µl in 'stable' neonates before transfusing platelets - recommended, low/small I; (8) permitting the platelet count to fall to <50,000/µl in 'unstable' neonates before transfusing platelets - recommended, moderate/small C, and (9) not performing routine coagulation test screening on every VLBW infant - recommended, moderate/small C. We view these recommendations as dynamic, to be revised as additional evidence becomes available. We predict this list will expand as new studies provide more information to guide best transfusion practices. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Shirai, Tomohiro; Friberg, Ari T.
Dispersion-canceled optical coherence tomography (OCT) based on spectral intensity interferometry was devised as a classical counterpart of quantum OCT to enhance the basic performance of conventional OCT. In this paper, we demonstrate experimentally that an alternative method of realizing this kind of OCT by means of two optical fiber couplers and a single spectrometer is a more practical and reliable option than the existing methods proposed previously. Furthermore, we develop a recipe for reducing multiple artifacts simultaneously on the basis of simple averaging and verify experimentally that it works successfully in the sense that all the artifacts are mitigated effectively and only the true signals carrying structural information about the sample survive.
Jones, Andrew D; Cruz Agudo, Yesmina; Galway, Lindsay; Bentley, Jeffery; Pinstrup-Andersen, Per
Most nutrition initiatives to date aimed at improving infant and young child feeding (IYCF) have emphasized addressing knowledge gaps through behavior change messaging with less focus on addressing the underlying environmental barriers that may shape these behaviors. This research integrates an analysis of longitudinal dietary data with qualitative data on barriers to improved child feeding to identify the nature and extent of the barriers caregivers face to improving IYCF practices in a farming region of the Bolivian Andes, and to determine the relative influence of these barriers on caregivers' abilities to improve IYCF practices. Sixty-nine caregivers were selected from a sample of 331 households that participated in a longitudinal survey assessing changes in IYCF practices among caregivers with children aged 0-36 months from March 2009 to March 2010. Forty-nine barriers within 12 categories of barriers were identified through semi-structured interviews with the 69 caregivers. The most frequently reported barriers were those related to women's time dedicated to agricultural labor, the limited diversity of household agricultural production, and lack of support for child feeding from spouses and mothers-in-law. In multivariate analyses controlling for several variables that could potentially influence IYCF practices, these barriers were negatively associated with changes to the diversity of child diets, child dietary energy intake, and child meal frequency. While knowledge gaps and individual-level influences affected IYCF practices, physical and social caregiving environments in this region of Bolivia were even more important. Behavior change communication alone will likely not address the social and environmental barriers to improved child feeding that often prevent translation of improved knowledge into action. Particularly in rural regions, agriculture may strongly influence child feeding, not only indirectly through household food security, but also directly
Jones, Andrew D; Agudo, Yesmina Cruz; Galway, Lindsay; Bentley, Jeffery; Pinstrup-Andersen, Per
Most nutrition initiatives to date aimed at improving infant and young child feeding (IYCF) have emphasized addressing knowledge gaps through behavior change messaging with less focus on addressing the underlying environmental barriers that may shape these behaviors. This research integrates an analysis of longitudinal dietary data with qualitative data on barriers to improved child feeding to identify the nature and extent of the barriers caregivers face to improving IYCF practices in a farming region of the Bolivian Andes, and to determine the relative influence of these barriers on caregivers’ abilities to improve IYCF practices. Sixty-nine caregivers were selected from a sample of 331 households that participated in a longitudinal survey assessing changes in IYCF practices among caregivers with children aged 0–36 months from March 2009 to March 2010. Forty-nine barriers within 12 categories of barriers were identified through semi-structured interviews with the 69 caregivers. The most frequently reported barriers were those related to women’s time dedicated to agricultural labor, the limited diversity of household agricultural production, and lack of support for child feeding from spouses and mothers-in-law. In multivariate analyses controlling for several variables that could potentially influence IYCF practices, these barriers were negatively associated with changes to the diversity of child diets, child dietary energy intake, and child meal frequency. While knowledge gaps and individual-level influences affected IYCF practices, physical and social caregiving environments in this region of Bolivia were even more important. Behavior change communication alone will likely not address the social and environmental barriers to improved child feeding that often prevent translation of improved knowledge into action. Particularly in rural regions, agriculture may strongly influence child feeding, not only indirectly through household food security, but also
O'Neill, Catherine S; Yaqoob, Maryam; Faraj, Sumaya; O'Neill, Carla L
The process of dying in intensive care units is complex as the technological environment shapes clinical decisions. Decisions at the end of life require the involvement of patient, families and healthcare professionals. The degree of involvement can vary depending on the professional and social culture of the unit. Nurses have an important role to play in caring for dying patients and their families; however, their knowledge is not always sought. This study explored nurses' care practices at the end of life, with the objective of describing and identifying end of life care practices that nurses contribute to, with an emphasis on culture, religious experiences and professional identity. Research Design and context: Grounded theory was used. In all, 10 nurses from intensive care unit in two large hospitals in Bahrain were participated. Ethical Considerations: Approval to carry out the research was given by the Research Ethics Committee of the host institution, and the two hospitals. A core category, Death Avoidance Talk, was emerged. This was supported by two major categories: (1) order-oriented care and (2) signalling death and care shifting. Death talk was avoided by the nurses, doctors and family members. When a decision was made by the medical team that a patient was not to be resuscitated, the nurses took this as a sign that death was imminent. This led to a process of signalling death to family and of shifting care to family members. Despite the avoidance of death talk and nurses' lack of professional autonomy, they created awareness that death was imminent to family members and ensured that end of life care was given in a culturally sensitive manner and aligned to Islamic values.
Liu, Jianchang; Zhang, Luoping; Zhang, Yuzhen; Deng, Hongbing
Agricultural decision-making to control nonpoint source (NPS) water pollution may not be efficiently implemented, if there is no appropriate cost-benefit analysis on agricultural management practices. This paper presents an interval-fuzzy linear programming (IFLP) model to deal with the trade-off between agricultural revenue, NPS pollution control, and alternative practices through land adjustment for Wuchuan catchment, a typical agricultural area in Jiulong River watershed, Fujian Province of China. From the results, the lower combination of practice 1, practice 2, practice 3, and practice 7 with the land area of 12.6, 5.2, 145.2, and 85.3 hm(2), respectively, could reduce NPS pollution load by 10%. The combination yields an income of 98,580 Chinese Yuan/a. If the pollution reduction is 15%, the higher combination need practice 1, practice 2, practice 3, practice 5, and practice 7 with the land area of 54.4, 23.6, 18.0, 6.3, and 85.3 hm(2), respectively. The income of this combination is 915,170 Chinese Yuan/a. The sensitivity analysis of IFLP indicates that the cost-effective practices are ranked as follows: practice 7 > practice 2 > practice 1 > practice 5 > practice 3 > practice 6 > practice 4. In addition, the uncertainties in the agriculture NPS pollution control system could be effectively quantified by the IFLP model. Furthermore, to accomplish a reasonable and applicable project of land-use adjustment, decision-makers could also integrate above solutions with their own experience and other information.
Kohn, Rachel; Madden, Vanessa; Kahn, Jeremy M; Asch, David A; Barnato, Amber E; Halpern, Scott D; Kerlin, Meeta Prasad
Several intensive care unit (ICU) organizational practices have been associated with improved patient outcomes. However, the uptake of these evidence-based practices is unknown. To assess diffusion of ICU organizational practices across the state of Pennsylvania. We conducted two web-based, cross-sectional surveys of ICU organizational practices in Pennsylvania acute care hospitals, in 2005 (chief nursing officer respondents) and 2014 (ICU nurse manager respondents). Of 223 eligible respondents, nurse managers from 136 (61%) medical, surgical, mixed medical-surgical, cardiac, and specialty ICUs in 98 hospitals completed the 2014 survey, compared with 124 of 164 (76%) chief nursing officers in the 2005 survey. In 2014, daytime physician staffing models varied widely, with 23 of 136 (17%) using closed models and 33 (24%) offering no intensivist staffing. Nighttime intensivist staffing was used in 37 (27%) ICUs, 38 (28%) used nonintensivist attending staffing, and 24 (18%) had no nighttime attending physicians. Daily multidisciplinary rounds occurred in 93 (68%) ICUs. Regular participants included clinical pharmacists in 68 of 93 (73%) ICUs, respiratory therapists in 62 (67%), and advanced practitioners in 37 (39%). Patients and family members participated in rounds in 36 (39%) ICUs. Clinical protocols or checklists for mechanically ventilated patients were available in 128 of 133 (96%) ICUs, low tidal volume ventilation for acute respiratory distress syndrome in 54 of 132 (41%) ICUs, prone positioning for severe acute respiratory distress syndrome in 37 of 134 (28%) ICUs, and family meetings in 19 of 134 (14%) ICUs. Among 61 ICUs that responded to both surveys, there was a significant increase in the proportion of ICUs using nighttime in-ICU attending physicians (23 [38%] in 2005 vs. 30 [49%] in 2014; P = 0.006). The diffusion of evidence-based ICU organizational practices has been variable across the state of Pennsylvania. Only half of Pennsylvania ICUs have
Ridgeway, Kyle; Nordon-Craft, Amy; Moss, Parker; Schenkman, Margaret; Moss, Marc
Background Early rehabilitation improves outcomes, and increased use of physical therapist services in the intensive care unit (ICU) has been recommended. Little is known about the implementation of early rehabilitation programs or physical therapists' preparation and perceptions of care in the United States. Objective A national survey was conducted to determine the current status of physical therapist practice in the ICU. Design This study used a cross-sectional, observational design. Methods Self-report surveys were mailed to members of the Acute Care Section of the American Physical Therapy Association. Questions addressed staffing, training, barriers, and protocols, and case scenarios were used to determine perceptions about providing rehabilitation. Results The response rate was 29% (667/2,320). Staffing, defined as the number of physical therapists per 100 ICU beds, was highest in community hospitals (academic: median=5.4 [range=3.6–9.2]; community: median=6.7 [range=4.4–10.0]) and in the western United States (median=7.5 [range=4.2–12.9]). Twelve percent of physical therapists reported no training. Barriers to providing ICU rehabilitation included insufficient staffing and training, departmental prioritization policies, and inadequate consultation criteria. Responses to case scenarios demonstrated differences in the likelihood of consultation and physical therapists' prescribed frequency and intensity of care based on medical interventions rather than characteristics of patients. Physical therapists in academic hospitals were more likely to be involved in the care of patients in each scenario and were more likely to perform higher-intensity mobilization. Limitations Members of the Acute Care Section of the American Physical Therapy Association may not represent most practicing physical therapists, and the 29% return rate may have contributed to response bias. Conclusions Although staffing was higher in community hospitals, therapists in academic and
Rushton, Cynda Hylton; Batcheller, Joyce; Schroeder, Kaia; Donohue, Pamela
The high level of stress experienced by nurses leads to moral distress, burnout, and a host of detrimental effects. To support creation of healthy work environments and to design a 2-phase project to enhance nurses' resilience while improving retention and reducing turnover. In phase 1, a cross-sectional survey was used to characterize the experiences of a high-stress nursing cohort. A total of 114 nurses in 6 high-intensity units completed 6 survey tools to assess the nurses' characteristics as the context for burnout and to explore factors involved in burnout, moral distress, and resilience. Statistical analysis was used to determine associations between scale measures and to identify independent variables related to burnout. Moral distress was a significant predictor of all 3 aspects of burnout, and the association between burnout and resilience was strong. Greater resilience protected nurses from emotional exhaustion and contributed to personal accomplishment. Spiritual well-being reduced emotional exhaustion and depersonalization; physical well-being was associated with personal accomplishment. Meaning in patient care and hope were independent predictors of burnout. Higher levels of resilience were associated with increased hope and reduced stress. Resilience scores were relatively flat over years of experience. These findings provide the basis for an experimental intervention in phase 2, which is designed to help participants cultivate strategies and practices for renewal, including mindfulness practices and personal resilience plans. ©2015 American Association of Critical-Care Nurses.
Hagen, Erika W.; Sadek-Badawi, Mona; Albanese, Aggie; Palta, Mari
Context: Improvements in neonatal care over the past three decades have resulted in increased survival of infants at lower birthweights and gestational ages. However, outcomes and practices vary considerably between hospitals. Objective: To describe maternal and infant characteristics, NICU practices, morbidity, and mortality in Wisconsin neonatal intensive care units (NICU) and to compare outcomes in Wisconsin to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development network of large academic medical center NICUs. Design and Setting: The Newborn Lung Project Statewide Cohort is a prospective observational study of all very low birthweight (≤ 1500 grams) infants admitted during 2003 and 2004 to the 16 level III NICUs in Wisconsin. Anonymous data were collected for all admitted infants (N=1463). Main outcome measures: Major neonatal morbidities, including bronchopulmonary dysplasia, intraventricular hemorrhage, necrotizing enterocolitis, and retinopathy of prematurity were evaluated. Results: The overall incidence of bronchopulmonary dysplasia was 24% (range 8-56% between NICUs); intraventricular hemorrhage incidence was 23% (9-41%); the incidence of necrotizing enterocolitis was 7% (0-21%); and the incidence of grade III or higher retinopathy of prematurity was 10% (0-35%). Conclusion: The incidence rates of major neonatal morbidities in Wisconsin were similar to those of a national network of academic NICUs. PMID:19180870
Hagen, Erika W; Sadek-Badawi, Mona; Albanese, Aggie; Palta, Mari
Improvements in neonatal care over the past 3 decades have increased survival of infants at lower birthweights and gestational ages. However, outcomes and practices vary considerably between hospitals. To describe maternal and infant characteristics, neonatal intensive care units (NICU) practices, morbidity, and mortality in Wisconsin NICUs, and to compare outcomes in Wisconsin to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development network of large academic medical center NICUs. The Newborn Lung Project Statewide Cohort is a prospective observational study of all very low birthweight (< or =1500 grams) infants admitted during 2003 and 2004 to the 16 level III NICUs in Wisconsin. Anonymous data were collected for all admitted infants (N=1463). Major neonatal morbidities, including bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH), necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), and retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) were evaluated. The overall incidence of BPD was 24% (8%-56% between NICUs); IVH incidence was 23% (9%-41%); the incidence of NEC was 7% (0%-21%); and the incidence of grade III or higher ROP was 10% (0%-35%). The incidence rates of major neonatal morbidities in Wisconsin were similar to those of a national network of academic NICUs.
McCord, Helen; Fieldhouse, Elise; El-Naggar, Walid
This article assesses the degree of variability in the current practice of skin antiseptics used in Canadian neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) and different experiences related to each antiseptic used. An anonymous survey was distributed to a clinical representative of each of the 124 Canadian level II and level III NICUs. One hundred and two respondents (82.2%), representing all Canadian provinces, completed the survey. Chlorhexidine gluconate with/without alcohol was the antiseptic most used (96%) and the antiseptic with the highest reported adverse effects (68% reported skin burns/breakdown). Other antiseptics used include povidone-iodine (35%) and isopropyl alcohol (22%). Specific guidelines for antiseptic use were available in only 50% of the units with many NICUs lacking gestational and/or chronological age restrictions. Only 23% of responders believed that there was awareness among health care providers of the adverse effects of antiseptics used. Less than half (43%) were completely satisfied with the antiseptics used in their units. Chlorhexidine gluconate is the most commonly used antiseptic in Canadian NICUs. The high number of associated adverse effects and the lack of guidelines regulating antiseptic use are of concern. Large clinical trials are urgently needed to guide practice and improve the safety of antiseptics. Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.
Murray, Hannah; El-Leithy, Sharif; Billings, Jo
Intensive cognitive therapy for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been shown to be as effective as weekly treatment in controlled trials. In this study, outcome data comparing standard and intensive treatments delivered in routine clinical practice were analysed. A consecutive case series of intensive treatment cases were compared to matched control cases who had completed weekly treatment. Both groups showed significant improvements on PTSD and depression measures. The intensive group showed larger PTSD symptomatic improvement. There were differences between the groups in age and time since trauma, suggesting selection biases in who is offered, and/or who chooses intensive treatment. For some individuals, an intensive format may be more effective than weekly treatment. © 2017 The British Psychological Society.
The Conservation Effects Assessment Program (CEAP) Watershed Assessment Study goals are to quantify the environmental benefits of conservation practices at the watershed scale. Currently, a critical knowledge gap exists in linking conservation practices and their ecological effects on aquatic ecosy...
New York State Office of the Comptroller, Albany. Div. of Management Audit.
This audit report of the State University of New York (SUNY) College of Agriculture and Technology at Morrisville addresses the question of whether the college management has established an effective system of internal control over its revenue, equipment, and student work-study payroll. The audit makes a number of observations and conclusions.…
Adaptation to human-induced environmental change has the potential to profoundly influence the genomic architecture of affected species. This is particularly true in agricultural ecosystems, where anthropogenic selection pressure is strong. Heliothis virescens feeds on cotton in its larval stages a...
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...
Phosphorus loss from agricultural fields fertilized with poultry litter (PL) may contribute to eutrophication of nearby rivers, lakes, and streams. It has been suggested that gypsum can be used as a soil amendment to reduce P loss from these fields. Also, a new USDA-NRCS National Conservation Practi...
Phosphorus losses from agricultural lands have caused serious eutrophication problems, particularly in Lake Erie. However, techniques that can effectively reduce total and soluble phosphorus losses from croplands and drainage channels can be difficult to implement and gauge. This modeling study was ...
Mueller, N. D.; Gerber, J. S.; Ray, D. K.; Ramankutty, N.; Foley, J. A.
The continued expansion and intensification of agriculture are key drivers of global environmental change. Meeting a doubling of food demand in the next half-century will further induce environmental change, requiring either large cropland expansion into carbon- and biodiversity-rich tropical forests or increasing yields on existing croplands. Closing the “yield gaps” between the most and least productive farmers on current agricultural lands is a necessary and major step towards preserving natural ecosystems and meeting future food demand. Here we use global climate, soils, and cropland datasets to quantify yield gaps for major crops using equal-area climate analogs. Consistent with previous studies, we find large yield gaps for many crops in Eastern Europe, tropical Africa, and parts of Mexico. To analyze the drivers of yield gaps, we collected sub-national agricultural management data and built a global dataset of fertilizer application rates for over 160 crops. We constructed empirical crop yield models for each climate analog using the global management information for 17 major crops. We find that our climate-specific models explain a substantial amount of the global variation in yields. These models could be widely applied to identify management changes needed to close yield gaps, analyze the environmental impacts of agricultural intensification, and identify climate change adaptation techniques.
Glæsner, Nadia; Leue, Marin; Magid, Jacob; Gerke, Horst H.
Understanding the heterogeneous nature of soil, i.e. properties and processes occurring specifically at local scales is essential for best managing our soil resources for agricultural production. Examination of intact soil structures in order to obtain an increased understanding of how soil systems operate from small to large scale represents a large gap within soil science research. Dissolved chemicals, nutrients and particles are transported through the disturbed plow layer of agricultural soil, where after flow through the lower soil layers occur by preferential flow via macropores. Rapid movement of water through macropores limit the contact between the preferentially moving water and the surrounding soil matrix, therefore contact and exchange of solutes in the water is largely restricted to the surface area of the macropores. Organomineral complex coated surfaces control sorption and exchange properties of solutes, as well as availability of essential nutrients to plant roots and to the preferentially flowing water. DRIFT (Diffuse Reflectance infrared Fourier Transform) Mapping has been developed to examine composition of organic matter coated macropores. In this study macropore surfaces structures will be determined for organic matter composition using DRIFT from a long-term field experiment on waste application to agricultural soil (CRUCIAL, close to Copenhagen, Denmark). Parcels with 5 treatments; accelerated household waste, accelerated sewage sludge, accelerated cattle manure, NPK and unfertilized, will be examined in order to study whether agricultural management have an impact on the organic matter composition of intact structures.
The use of pesticides in agriculture, their potential to be transported beyond the intended target, and their possible risk to human and environmental health has been of public concern for many years. We utilized 5 years of field data from 3 vegetable production systems to evaluate the ability of ag...
Agricultural phosphorus (P) loss has been linked to the eutrophication of surface water bodies throughout the world and minimizing offsite P transport continues to be a priority in many watersheds. In the U.S. Midwest and other tile-drained regions, there is a critical need to identify nutrient mana...
Bench, Suzanne; Cornish, Jocelyn; Xyrichis, Andreas
Background Understanding how patients and relatives can be supported after hospital discharge is a UK research priority. Intensive Care Unit (ICU) discharge summaries are a simple way of providing GPs with the information they require to coordinate ongoing care, but little evidence is available to guide best practice. Aim This study aimed at better understanding the information needs of GP staff (GPs and practice nurses) supporting former patients of ICUs and their families following discharge from hospital, and identifying the barriers/facilitators associated with ICU–primary care information transfer. Design and setting This was a qualitative exploratory study of practices and participants throughout the UK. Method Audiotaped focus group discussions, complemented by small-group/individual interviews, were conducted with 15 former patients of ICUs, four relatives, and 20 GP staff between June and September 2015. Demographic data were captured by questionnaire and qualitative data were thematically analysed. Results Findings suggest variability in discharge information experiences and blurred lines of responsibility between hospital and GP staff, and patients/relatives. Continuity of care was affected by delayed or poor communication from the hospital; GPs’ limited contact with patients from critical care; and a lack of knowledge of the effects of critical illness or resources available to ameliorate these difficulties. Time pressures and information technology were, respectively, the most commonly mentioned barrier and facilitator. Conclusion Effective rehabilitation after a critical illness requires a coordinated and comprehensive approach, incorporating the provision of well-completed, timely, and relevant ICU–primary care discharge information. Health professionals need an improved understanding of critical illness, and patients and families must be included in all aspects of the information-sharing process. PMID:27872086
Baidya, Sumana; Acharya, Ranjeeta S.; Coppieters, Michel W.
Context: As physiotherapy (PT) is a young profession in Nepal, there is a dearth of insight into the common practices of physiotherapists in critical care. Aims: To identify the availability of PT services in Intensive Care Units (ICUs) and articulate the common practices by physiotherapists in ICUs of Nepal. Settings and Design: All tertiary care hospitals across Nepal with ICU facility via an exploratory cross-sectional survey. Subjects and Methods: An existing questionnaire was distributed to all the physiotherapists currently working in ICUs of Nepal with 2 years of experience. The survey was sent via E-mail or given in person to 86 physiotherapists. Statistical Analysis Used: Descriptive and inferential statistics according to nature of data. Results: The response rate was 60% (n = 52). In the majority of hospitals (68%), PT service was provided only after a physician consultation, and few hospitals (13%) had established hospital criteria for PT in ICUs. Private hospitals (57.1%) were providing PT service in weekends compared to government hospitals (32.1%) (P = 0.17). The likelihood of routine PT involvement varied significantly with the clinical scenarios (highest 71.2% status cerebrovascular accident, lowest 3.8% myocardial infarction, P < 0.001). The most preferred PT treatment was chest PT (53.8%) and positioning (21.2%) while least preferred was therapeutic exercise (3.8%) irrespective of clinical scenarios. Conclusions: There is a lack of regular PT service during weekends in ICUs of Nepal. Most of the cases are treated by physiotherapists only after physician's referral. The preferred intervention seems to be limited only to chest PT and physiotherapists are not practicing therapeutic exercise and functional mobility training to a great extent. PMID:27076708
Chen, Han; Sun, Haichun
The study aims to explore the effects of receiving active videogame (AVG) feedback and playing experience on individuals' moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and perceived enjoyment. This was a within-subject design study. The participants included 36 (n = 15 and 21 for boys and girls, respectively) fourth graders enrolled in a rural elementary school in southern Georgia area. The experiment lasted for 6 weeks with each week including three sessions. The participants were assigned in either front row (sensor feedback) or back row (no sensor feedback) during practice, which was alternated in different sessions. Two different dance games were played during the study with each game implemented for 3 weeks. The MVPA was measured with GT3X+ accelerometers. Physical activity (PA) enjoyment was assessed after the completion of the first two and last two sessions of each game. A repeated one-way ANOVA (analysis of variance) was used to examine the effects of AVG feedback and game on MVPA. A repeated one-way MANOVA (multivariate analysis of variance) was conducted for each game to examine the effects of experience and AVG feedback on enjoyment and MVPA. No effects of AVG feedback were found for MVPA or enjoyment (P > 0.05). The effects of experience on MVPA were found for Just Dance Kids 2014 with experience decreased MVPA (P < 0.05). Students who practiced dance AVG without receiving feedback still demonstrated positive affection and accumulated similar MVPA than when practicing while receiving feedback. Experience for certain dance games tends to decrease PA intensity.
Annigeri, Rajeev A; Nandeesh, Venkatappa; Karuniya, Ramanathan; Rajalakshmi, Sasikumar; Venkataraman, Ramesh; Ramakrishnan, Nagarajan
Recent advances in dialysis therapy have made an impact on the clinical practice of renal replacement therapy (RRT) in acute kidney injury (AKI) in Intensive Care Unit (ICU). We studied the impact of RRT practice changes on outcomes in AKI in ICU over a period of 8 years. AKI patients requiring RRT in ICU referred to a nephrologist during two different periods (period-1: Between May 2004 and May 2007, n = 69; period-2: Between August 2008 and May 2011, n = 93) were studied. The major changes in the dialysis practice during the period-2, compared to period-1 were introduction of prolonged intermittent RRT (PIRRT), early dialysis for metabolic acidosis, early initiation of RRT for anuria and positive fluid balance and use of bicarbonate-based fluids for continuous RRT (CRRT) instead of lactate buffer. The primary study outcome was 28-day hospital mortality. The mean age was 53.8 ± 16.1 years and 72.6% were male. Introduction of PIRRT resulted in 37% reduction in utilization of CRRT during period-2 (from 85.5% to 53.7%). The overall mortality was high (68%) but was significantly reduced during period-2 compared to period-1 (59% vs. 79.7%, P = 0.006). Metabolic acidosis but not the mode of RRT, was the significant factor which influenced mortality. Adaption of PIRRT resulted in 37% reduction of utilization of CRRT. The mortality rate was significantly reduced during the period of adaption of PIRRT, possibly due to early initiation of RRT in the latter period for indications such as anuria and metabolic acidosis.
Annigeri, Rajeev A.; Nandeesh, Venkatappa; Karuniya, Ramanathan; Rajalakshmi, Sasikumar; Venkataraman, Ramesh; Ramakrishnan, Nagarajan
Aim: Recent advances in dialysis therapy have made an impact on the clinical practice of renal replacement therapy (RRT) in acute kidney injury (AKI) in Intensive Care Unit (ICU). We studied the impact of RRT practice changes on outcomes in AKI in ICU over a period of 8 years. Subjects and Methods: AKI patients requiring RRT in ICU referred to a nephrologist during two different periods (period-1: Between May 2004 and May 2007, n = 69; period-2: Between August 2008 and May 2011, n = 93) were studied. The major changes in the dialysis practice during the period-2, compared to period-1 were introduction of prolonged intermittent RRT (PIRRT), early dialysis for metabolic acidosis, early initiation of RRT for anuria and positive fluid balance and use of bicarbonate-based fluids for continuous RRT (CRRT) instead of lactate buffer. The primary study outcome was 28-day hospital mortality. Results: The mean age was 53.8 ± 16.1 years and 72.6% were male. Introduction of PIRRT resulted in 37% reduction in utilization of CRRT during period-2 (from 85.5% to 53.7%). The overall mortality was high (68%) but was significantly reduced during period-2 compared to period-1 (59% vs. 79.7%, P = 0.006). Metabolic acidosis but not the mode of RRT, was the significant factor which influenced mortality. Conclusions: Adaption of PIRRT resulted in 37% reduction of utilization of CRRT. The mortality rate was significantly reduced during the period of adaption of PIRRT, possibly due to early initiation of RRT in the latter period for indications such as anuria and metabolic acidosis. PMID:26955212
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.
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
Yu, Mingjing; Rhoads, Bruce L.
The flux of fine sediment within agricultural watersheds is an important factor determining the environmental quality of streams and rivers. Despite this importance, the contributions of sediment sources to suspended sediment loads within intensively managed agricultural watersheds remain poorly understood. This study assesses the provenance of fine suspended sediment in the headwater portion of a river flowing through an agricultural landscape in Illinois. Sediment source samples were collected from five sources: croplands, forested floodplains, grasslands, upper grazed floodplains, and lower grazed floodplains. Event-based and aggregated suspended sediment samples were collected from the stream at the watershed outlet. Quantitative geochemical fingerprinting techniques and a mixing model were employed to estimate the relative contributions of sediment from the five sources to the suspended sediment loads. To account for possible effects of small sample sizes, the analysis was repeated with only two sources: grazed floodplains and croplands/grasslands/forested floodplains. Results based on mean values of tracers indicate that the vast majority of suspended sediment within the stream (>95%) is derived from erosion of channel banks and the soil surface within areas of grazed floodplains. Uncertainty analysis based on Monte Carlo simulations indicates that mean values of tracer properties, which do not account for sampling variability in these properties, probably overestimate contributions from the two major sources. Nevertheless, this analysis still supports the conclusion that floodplain erosion accounts for the largest percentage of instream sediment (≈55-75%). Although grazing occurs over only a small portion of the total watershed area, grazed floodplains, which lie in close proximity to the stream channel, are an important source of sediment in this headwater steam system. Efforts to reduce fluxes of fine sediment in this intensively managed landscape should
Yu, M.; Rhoads, B. L.; Stumpf, A.
The flux of fine sediment within agricultural watersheds is an important factor determining the environmental quality of streams and rivers. Despite this importance, the contributions of sediment sources to suspended sediment loads within intensively managed agricultural watersheds remain poorly understood. This study assesses the provenance of fine suspended sediment in the headwater portion of a river flowing through an agricultural landscape in Illinois. Sediment source samples were collected from five potential sources: streambanks, forested floodplain, grassland, and grazed floodplains. Event-based and aggregated suspended sediment samples were collected from the stream at the watershed outlet. Quantitative geochemical fingerprinting techniques and a mixing model were employed to estimate the relative contributions of sediment from five potential sources to the suspended sediment loads. Organic matter content, trace elements, and fallout radionuclides were used as potential tracers. Principal Component analysis was employed to complement the results and Monte Carlo random sampling routine was used to test the uncertainty in estimated contributions of sources to in-stream sediment loads. Results indicate that the majority of suspended sediment is derived from streambanks and grazed floodplains. Erosion of the floodplain both by surface runoff and by streambank erosion from lateral channel migration contributes to the production of fine sediment within the stream system. These results suggest that human activities, in this case grazing, have converted portions of floodplains, normally net depositional environments, into sources of fine sediments. Efforts to reduce fluxes of fine sediment in this intensively managed landscape should focus on degraded floodplain surfaces and eroding channel banks within heavily grazed reaches of the stream.
Agroecosystem models and conservation planning tools require spatially and temporally explicit input data about agricultural management operations. The Land-use and Agricultural Management Practices web-Service (LAMPS) provides crop rotation and management information for user-specified areas within...
Felismina, Raimundo; Silva, Miguel; Mateus, Artur; Malça, Cândida
It is irrefutable that the use of Unmanned Airborne Vehicle Systems (UAVs) in agricultural tasks and on the analysis of health and vegetative conditions represents a powerful tool in modern agriculture. To contribute to the growth of the agriculture economic sector a seeder to be coupled to any type of UAV was previously developed and designed by the authors. This seeder allows for the deposition of seeds with positional accuracy, i.e., seeds are accurately deposited at pre-established distances between plants . This work aims at analyzing the aerodynamic behavior of UAV/Seeder assembly to determine the suitable inclination - among 0°, 15° and 30° - for its takeoff and for its motion during the seeding operation and, in turn, to define the suitable flight plan that increases the batteries autonomy. For this the ANSYS® FLUENT computational tool was used to simulate a wind tunnel which has as principle the Navier-Stokes differential equations, that designates the fluid flow around the UAV/Seeder assembly. The aerodynamic results demonstrated that for take-off the UAV inclination of 30° is the aerodynamically most favorable position due to the lower aerodynamic drag during the climb. Concerning flying motion during the seeding procedure the UAV inclination of 0° is that which leads to lower UAV/Seeder frontal area and drag coefficient.
Allende, Ana; Castro-Ibáñez, Irene; Lindqvist, Roland; Gil, María Isabel; Uyttendaele, Mieke; Jacxsens, Liesbeth
A quantitative microbial contamination model of Escherichia coli during primary production of baby spinach was developed. The model included only systematic contamination routes (e.g. soil and irrigation water) and it was used to evaluate the potential impact of weather conditions, agricultural practices as well as bacterial fitness in soil on the E. coli levels present in the crop at harvest. The model can be used to estimate E. coli contamination of baby spinach via irrigation water, via soil splashing due to irrigation water or rain events, and also including the inactivation of E. coli on plants due to solar radiation during a variable time of culturing before harvest. Seasonality, solar radiation and rainfall were predicted to have an important impact on the E. coli contamination. Winter conditions increased E. coli prevalence and levels when compared to spring conditions. As regards agricultural practices, both water quality and irrigation system slightly influenced E. coli levels on baby spinach. The good microbiological quality of the irrigation water (average E. coli counts in positive water samples below 1 log/100mL) could have influenced the differences observed among the tested agricultural practices (water treatment and irrigation system). This quantitative microbial contamination model represents a preliminary framework that assesses the potential impact of different factors and intervention strategies affecting E. coli concentrations at field level. Taking into account that E. coli strains may serve as a surrogate organism for enteric bacterial pathogens, obtained results on E. coli levels on baby spinach may be indicative of the potential behaviour of these pathogens under defined conditions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Lam, Eva Y; Kecskés, Zsuzsoka; Abdel-Latif, Mohamed E
To find out the knowledge and attitudes of health-care professionals (HCPs) in Australian neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) towards breast milk banking (BMBg) and pasteurised donated breast milk (PDBM). Cross-sectional structured survey of HCPs in all 25 NICUs in Australia. Response rate was 43.4% (n= 358 of 825). Participants included nurses and midwives (291, 81.3%) and the remainder were neonatologists and neonatal trainees (67, 18.7%). A variable number of HCPs agreed that PDBM would decrease the risk of necrotising enterocolitis (81%) and allergies (48.9%), 8.4% thought PDBM will carry risk of infections and 78.8% agreed that PDBM is preferable over formula, but only 67.5% thought that establishing breast milk banks (BMBs) are justifiable. Significant differences were found between doctors and nurses/midwives, with 19.4% of doctors compared with 5.8% of nurses/midwives agreed that PDBM carried an increased risk of infection. Although, over 90% of nurses/midwives and 70% of doctors agreed that the donation of breast milk is important, only 71% of nurses/midwives and 52.2% of doctors thought that setting up a BMB was justifiable. The opinions about BMBg differ widely between HCPs; however, the majority support the practice. HCPs had different knowledge gaps in regard to BMBg. Nurses/midwives positively view the practice of BMBg more strongly compared with neonatologists. © 2012 The Authors. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health © 2012 Paediatrics and Child Health Division (Royal Australasian College of Physicians).
Estébanez-Montiel, M B; Quintana-Díaz, M; García de Lorenzo y Mateos, A; Blancas Gomez-Casero, R; Acosta-Escribano, J; Marcos-Neira, P
Human albumin solutions are used in a number of disorders, though their indications are not clear in all circumstances. These solutions are costly, and their benefit has not been established in all settings. It is therefore interesting to assess the presence of albumin solutions in the daily clinical practice of critical care professionals. To report the standard clinical practices and to describe the variability of albumin solutions use in critically ill patients. A survey sent by e-mail to Spanish and South American Intensive Care Units (ICUs) Planning and execution during the year 2012. A questionnaire comprising 35 questions. Fifty-seven surveys were analyzed. The use of albumin solutions was sporadic or negligible in critically ill patients (96.5%). The exceptions were patients with liver disease (87.7% of the responders administered albumin to these patients). A high percentage of professionals claimed to know the available scientific evidence on the use of albumin in patients with liver disease (82.5%) and in patients without liver disease (77.2%). Only 5.3% of the responders preferred to rely on their own experience to establish the indications of albumin use. The use of albumin solutions is infrequent in ICUs, except in patients with liver disease. Evidence-based knowledge on albumin use is declared to be extensive in ICUs. As a rule, opinions on the use of albumin solutions are based on the scientific recommendations, especially in patients with liver disease. Professional experience rarely prevails over the published clinical guidelines. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier España, S.L.U. and SEMICYUC. All rights reserved.
Lockhart, K. M.; King, A. M.; Harter, T.
Groundwater quality is a concern in alluvial aquifers underlying agricultural areas worldwide. Nitrate from land applied fertilizers or from animal waste can leach to groundwater and contaminate drinking water resources. The San Joaquin Valley, California, is an example of an agricultural landscape with a large diversity of field, vegetable, tree, nut, and citrus crops, but also confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs, here mostly dairies) that generate, store, and land apply large amounts of liquid manure. As in other such regions around the world, the rural population in the San Joaquin Valley relies almost exclusively on shallow domestic wells (≤ 150 m deep), of which many have been affected by nitrate. Variability in crops, soil type, and depth to groundwater contribute to large variability in nitrate occurrence across the underlying aquifer system. The role of these factors in controlling groundwater nitrate contamination levels is examined. Two hundred domestic wells were sampled in two sub-regions of the San Joaquin Valley, Stanislaus and Merced (Stan/Mer) and Tulare and Kings (Tul/Kings) Counties. Forty six percent of well water samples in Tul/Kings and 42% of well water samples in Stan/Mer exceeded the MCL for nitrate (10 mg/L NO3-N). For statistical analysis of nitrate contamination, 78 crop and landuse types were considered by grouping them into ten categories (CAFO, citrus, deciduous fruits and nuts, field crops, forage, native, pasture, truck crops, urban, and vineyards). Vadose zone thickness, soil type, well construction information, well proximity to dairies, and dominant landuse near the well were considered. In the Stan/Mer area, elevated nitrate levels in domestic wells most strongly correlate with the combination of very shallow (≤ 21 m) water table and the presence of either CAFO derived animal waste applications or deciduous fruit and nut crops (synthetic fertilizer applications). In Tulare County, statistical data indicate that elevated
Muhammed, Shibu E; Coleman, Kevin; Wu, Lianhai; Bell, Victoria A; Davies, Jessica A C; Quinton, John N; Carnell, Edward J; Tomlinson, Samuel J; Dore, Anthony J; Dragosits, Ulrike; Naden, Pamela S; Glendining, Margaret J; Tipping, Edward; Whitmore, Andrew P
This paper describes an agricultural model (Roth-CNP) that estimates carbon (C), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) pools, pool changes, their balance and the nutrient fluxes exported from arable and grassland systems in the UK during 1800-2010. The Roth-CNP model was developed as part of an Integrated Model (IM) to simulate C, N and P cycling for the whole of UK, by loosely coupling terrestrial, hydrological and hydro-chemical models. The model was calibrated and tested using long term experiment (LTE) data from Broadbalk (1843) and Park Grass (1856) at Rothamsted. We estimated C, N and P balance and their fluxes exported from arable and grassland systems on a 5km×5km grid across the whole of UK by using the area of arable of crops and livestock numbers in each grid and their management. The model estimated crop and grass yields, soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks and nutrient fluxes in the form of NH 4 -N, NO 3 -N and PO 4 -P. The simulated crop yields were compared to that reported by national agricultural statistics for the historical to the current period. Overall, arable land in the UK have lost SOC by -0.18, -0.25 and -0.08MgCha -1 y -1 whereas land under improved grassland SOC stock has increased by 0.20, 0.47 and 0.24MgCha -1 y -1 during 1800-1950, 1950-1970 and 1970-2010 simulated in this study. Simulated N loss (by leaching, runoff, soil erosion and denitrification) increased both under arable (-15, -18 and -53kgNha -1 y -1 ) and grass (-18, -22 and -36kgNha -1 y -1 ) during different time periods. Simulated P surplus increased from 2.6, 10.8 and 18.1kgPha -1 y -1 under arable and 2.8, 11.3 and 3.6kgPha -1 y -1 under grass lands 1800-1950, 1950-1970 and 1970-2010. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Good farming practices are conducted for a variety of reasons. Farmers now include management practices such as over wintering cover crops, reduced tillage, and crop rotation with the goals of reducing soil erosion, managing nutrient availability, building soil organic matter, controlling weeds, an...
Büssing, Arndt; Hedtstück, Anemone; Khalsa, Sat Bir S.; Ostermann, Thomas; Heusser, Peter
The majority of research on yoga focuses on its psychophysiological and therapeutic benefits, while the spiritual aspects are rarely addressed. Changes of specific aspects of spirituality were thus investigated among 160 individuals (91% women, mean age 40.9 ± 8.3 years; 57% Christians) starting a 2-year yoga teacher training. We used standardized questionnaires to measure aspects of spirituality (ASP), mindfulness (FMI—Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory), life satisfaction (BMLSS—Brief Multidimensional Life Satisfaction Scale), and positive mood (lightheartedness/relief). At the start of the course, scores of the respective ASP subscales for search for insight/wisdom, transcendence conviction, and conscious interactions/compassion were high, while those for religious orientation were low. Within the 6 month observation period, both conscious interactions/compassion (effect size, Cohen's d = .33), Religious orientation (d = .21), Lightheartedness/Relief (d = .75) and mindfulness (d = .53) increased significantly. Particularly non-religious/non-spiritual individuals showed moderate effects for an increase of conscious interactions/compassion. The results from this study suggest that an intensive yoga practice (1) may significantly increase specific aspects of practitioners' spirituality, mindfulness, and mood, (2) that these changes are dependent in part on their original spiritual/religious self-perception, and (3) that there are strong correlations amongst these constructs (i.e., conscious interactions/compassion, and mindfulness). PMID:22852023
van Kaam, Anton H; Rimensberger, Peter C; Borensztajn, Dorine; De Jaegere, Anne P
To assess current ventilation practices in newborn infants. We conducted a 2-point cross-sectional study in 173 European neonatal intensive care units, including 535 infants (mean gestational age 28 weeks and birth weight 1024 g). Patient characteristics, ventilator settings, and measurements were collected bedside from endotracheally ventilated infants. A total of 457 (85%) patients were conventionally ventilated. Time cycled pressure-limited ventilation was used in 59% of these patients, most often combined with synchronized intermittent mandatory ventilation (51%). Newer conventional ventilation modes like volume targeted and pressure support ventilation were used in, respectively, 9% and 7% of the patients. The mean tidal volume, measured in 84% of the conventionally ventilated patients, was 5.7 ± 2.3 ml/kg. The mean positive end-expiratory pressure was 4.5 ± 1.1 cmH(2)O and rarely exceeded 7 cmH(2)O. Time cycled pressure-limited ventilation is the most commonly used mode in neonatal ventilation. Tidal volumes are usually targeted between 4 to 7 mL/kg and positive end-expiratory pressure between 4 to 6 cmH(2)O. Newer ventilation modes are only used in a minority of patients. Copyright © 2010 Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
Bjurling-Sjöberg, Petronella; Wadensten, Barbro; Pöder, Ulrika; Jansson, Inger; Nordgren, Lena
This study aimed to describe and explain teamwork and factors that influence team processes in everyday practice in an intensive care unit (ICU) from a staff perspective. The setting was a Swedish ICU. Data were collected from 38 ICU staff in focus groups with registered nurses, assistant nurses, and anaesthetists, and in one individual interview with a physiotherapist. Constant comparative analysis according to grounded theory was conducted, and to identify the relations between the emerged categories, the paradigm model was applied. The core category to emerge from the data was "balancing intertwined responsibilities." In addition, eleven categories that related to the core category emerged. These categories described and explained the phenomenon's contextual conditions, causal conditions, and intervening conditions, as well as the staff actions/interactions and the consequences that arose. The findings indicated that the type of teamwork fluctuated due to circumstantial factors. Based on the findings and on current literature, strategies that can optimise interprofessional teamwork are presented. The analysis generated a conceptual model, which aims to contribute to existing frameworks by adding new dimensions about perceptions of team processes within an ICU related to staff actions/interactions. This model may be utilised to enhance the understanding of existing contexts and processes when designing and implementing interventions to facilitate teamwork in the pursuit of improving healthcare quality and patient safety.
Sorensen, Roslyn; Iedema, Rick
The aim of this study was to understand the environment of health care, and how clinicians and managers respond in terms of performance accountability. A qualitative method was used in a tertiary metropolitan teaching intensive care unit (ICU) in Sydney, Australia, including interviews with 15 clinical managers and focus groups with 29 nurses of differing experience. The study found that a managerial focus on abstract goals, such as budgets detracted from managing the core business of clinical work. Fractures were evident within clinical units, between clinical units and between clinical and managerial domains. These fractures reinforced the status quo where seemingly unconnected patient care activities were undertaken by loosely connected individual clinicians with personalized concepts of accountability. Managers must conceptualize health services as an interconnected entity within which self-directed teams negotiate and agree objectives, collect and review performance data and define collective practice. Organically developing regimens of care within and across specialist clinical units, such as in ICUs, directly impact upon health service performance and accountability.
Mboera, Leonard E G; Shayo, Elizabeth H; Senkoro, Kesheni P; Rumisha, Susan F; Mlozi, Malongo R S; Mayala, Benjamin K
This study was carried out to determine knowledge, perceptions and practices of farming communities on linkages between agriculture and malaria in Mvomero District in Tanzania. A total of 661 adult males and females were interviewed using a structured questionnaire. Most respondents (85.6%) were engaged in crop production. Significantly, a larger proportion (55.2%) of the respondents had primary school education (P<0.001). Majority (88.2%) respondents described malaria as the most important public health problem. However, only 48.2% of the respondents had high knowledge of malaria. The level of knowledge on malaria was associated with level of education of the respondent. Those who had attended at least primary school education were more knowledgeable that those without formal education. A significantly larger proportion (67%) of the respondents experienced most malaria episodes during the rainy season (P<0.001). Respondents with low knowledge on malaria experienced 2.3 times more malaria cases in their households than those with higher knowledge. Respondents with low knowledge preferred to seek care from health facilities (OR: 7.28) than those with high knowledge (OR: 0.15). Rice farming was significantly associated with malaria transmission compared to either maize or sugarcane farming (P<0.001). Cattle, sheep and goats were the domestic animals most frequently incriminated to create aquatic habitats for mosquito breeding. Householders with formal education (OR: 4.6, CI: 1.33-15.89, P-value=0.016) and higher knowledge (OR: 1.7, CI: 1.15-2.55, P-value=0.008) reported to incur large losses when having a malaria case than those without education/low knowledge. Majority (60.2%) of the respondent owned at least an insecticide treated mosquito net (ITN). Respondents with higher knowledge of malaria were likely to own at least an ITN than those with low knowledge (P<0.001). In conclusion, the knowledge on malaria and its linkage with agriculture among farming
Soil-vegetation-atmosphere transfers significantly influence interactions and feedbacks between vegetation and boundary layer in relation with plant phenology and water status. The current study focused on linking micrometeorological conditions to cultural practices at the local and regional scales ...
Yoder, Aaron M; Murphy, Dennis J
Social marketing is an intervention development strategy that pays considerable attention to barriers to and motivators for behavioral change or adoption of recommended behaviors. Barriers are obstacles that prevent individuals from changing or adopting behaviors and are often referred to as the "cons" or "costs" of doing something. Motivators, on the other hand, are factors that encourage individuals to change or adopt behaviors and are often referred to as the "pros," "benefits," or "influencing factors" of doing something. Importantly, social marketing does not target education or knowledge change as an end point; rather, it targets behavior change. Studies across several types of desired behaviors (e.g., smoking cessation, weight control, more exercise, sunscreen use, radon testing) using the Stages of Change model have found systematic relationships between stages of change and pros and cons of changing behavior. A review of literature identifies numerous research and intervention studies that directly reference social marketing in agricultural safety and health, studies that identify reasons why parents allow their children to be exposed to hazardous situations on the farm, and reasons why youth engage in risky behaviors, but only two studies were found that show evidence of systematically researching specific behavioral change motivating factors. The authors offer several suggestions to help address issues relating to social marketing and agricultural safety and health.
Caldararu, S.; Smith, M. J.; Purves, D.; Emmott, S.
Global agriculture will, in the future, be faced with two main challenges: climate change and an increase in global food demand driven by an increase in population and changes in consumption habits. To be able to predict both the impacts of changes in climate on crop yields and the changes in agricultural practices necessary to respond to such impacts we currently need to improve our understanding of crop responses to climate and the predictive capability of our models. Ideally, what we would have at our disposal is a modelling tool which, given certain climatic conditions and agricultural practices, can predict the growth pattern and final yield of any of the major crops across the globe. We present a simple, process-based crop growth model based on the assumption that plants allocate above- and below-ground biomass to maintain overall carbon optimality and that, to maintain this optimality, the reproductive stage begins at peak nitrogen uptake. The model includes responses to available light, water, temperature and carbon dioxide concentration as well as nitrogen fertilisation and irrigation. The model is data constrained at two sites, the Yaqui Valley, Mexico for wheat and the Southern Great Plains flux site for maize and soybean, using a robust combination of space-based vegetation data (including data from the MODIS and Landsat TM and ETM+ instruments), as well as ground-based biomass and yield measurements. We show a number of climate response scenarios, including increases in temperature and carbon dioxide concentrations as well as responses to irrigation and fertiliser application.
Kourgialas, N. N.; Karatzas, G. P.
A modeling system for the estimation of flash flood flow velocity and sediment transport is developed in this study. The system comprises three components: (a) a modeling framework based on the hydrological model HSPF, (b) the hydrodynamic module of the hydraulic model MIKE 11 (quasi-2-D), and (c) the advection-dispersion module of MIKE 11 as a sediment transport model. An important parameter in hydraulic modeling is the Manning's coefficient, an indicator of the channel resistance which is directly dependent on riparian vegetation changes. Riparian vegetation's effect on flood propagation parameters such as water depth (inundation), discharge, flow velocity, and sediment transport load is investigated in this study. Based on the obtained results, when the weed-cutting percentage is increased, the flood wave depth decreases while flow discharge, velocity and sediment transport load increase. The proposed modeling system is used to evaluate and illustrate the flood hazard for different riparian vegetation cutting scenarios. For the estimation of flood hazard, a combination of the flood propagation characteristics of water depth, flow velocity and sediment load was used. Next, a well-balanced selection of the most appropriate agricultural cutting practices of riparian vegetation was performed. Ultimately, the model results obtained for different agricultural cutting practice scenarios can be employed to create flood protection measures for flood-prone areas. The proposed methodology was applied to the downstream part of a small Mediterranean river basin in Crete, Greece.
Verma, Bibhash C; Datta, Siba Prasad; Rattan, Raj K; Singh, Anil K
Soil organic matter not only affects sustainability of agricultural ecosystems, but also extremely important in maintaining overall quality of environment as soil contains a significant part of global carbon stock. Hence, we attempted to assess the influence of different tillage and nutrient management practices on various stabilized and active soil organic carbon pools, and their contribution to the extractable nitrogen phosphorus and sulfur. Our study confined to the assessment of impact of agricultural management practices on the soil organic carbon pools and extractable nutrients under three important cropping systems, viz. soybean-wheat, maize-wheat, and rice-wheat. Results indicated that there was marginal improvement in Walkley and Black content in soil under integrated and organic nutrient management treatments in soybean-wheat, maize-wheat, and rice-wheat after completion of four cropping cycles. Improvement in stabilized pools of soil organic carbon (SOC) was not proportional to the applied amount of organic manures. While, labile pools of SOC were increased with the increase in amount of added manures. Apparently, green manure (Sesbania) was more effective in enhancing the lability of SOC as compared to farmyard manure and crop residues. The KMnO(4)-oxidizable SOC proved to be more sensitive and consistent as an index of labile pool of SOC compared to microbial biomass carbon. Under different cropping sequences, labile fractions of soil organic carbon exerted consistent positive effect on the extractable nitrogen, phosphorus, and sulfur in soil.
Tóth, Adrienn; Jakab, Gergely; Sipos, Péter; Karlik, Máté; Madarász, Balázs; Zacháry, Dóra; Szabó, Judit; Szalai, Zoltán
Rare earth elements (REE) have very favourable characteristics for being ideal sediment tracers as they are characterised by strong binding to soil particles, low mobility, low background concentration in soils, environmental benignity, high analytical sensitivity and they can be detected relatively easily and inexpensively in soils. The group of REEs consist of 16 elements with similar chemical properties, but at the same time, they are clearly distinguishable enabling multiple tracking of sediment deriving from different parts of the studied area, as well as mapping redistribution processes by appropriate designing of subareas marked by different REEs. In this study, rainfall simulation experiments were carried out to compare the loss and redistribution of soil sediments in two plots under conventional and conservation agricultural practices. Five different rainfall intensities (up to 80 mm/h) were applied to both plots. Sources and pathways of sediments within the two plots were studied using REE-oxides as tracers. Approximately 1,000 mg/kg of Er2O3, Ho2O3 and Sm2O3 (calculated to the upper 1 cm of the soil) were dispersed to the soil surface with banded distribution; each transversal band covered the third of the surface are of the plots. Concentration of the REE-oxides in the sediment leaving the plots, and that of the surface soil before and after the experiment were analysed by X-Ray fluorescence spectrometry. Significant sediment losses were found for both plots after the experiments, with slightly different characteristics between the conventional and conservation ones. Highest difference in loss of added REEs was found in the upper third of the plots with 81 ± 19% in the conventional and 71 ± 21% in the conservation ones. These values have been equalized downwards with almost complete losses in the lower third of the plots (99 ± 2% and 97 ± 4%, respectively). Only very small part of the removed sediment has been accumulated in the lower parts of the
Arantes, Mavilde; Barbosa, Joselina Maria; Ferreira, Maria Amélia
General practitioners are responsible for the management of an increasing number of patients with neurological illness, and thus a solid education in neurosciences is a necessary component of their training. This study examines the effects of an intensive clinical neuroanatomy course on twenty general practice residents' perceptions, attitudes,…
Little is known about the effect of management practices on net global warming potential (GWP) and greenhouse gas intensity (GHGI) that account for all sources and sinks of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in dryland cropping systems. The objective of this study was to compare the effect of a combinat...
Wind, Jentina; van Mook, Walther N K A; Dhanani, Sonny; van Heurn, Ernest W L
Determination of death is an essential part of donation after circulatory death (DCD). We studied the current practices of determination of death after circulatory arrest by intensive care physicians in the Netherlands, the availability of guidelines, and the occurrence of the phenomenon of autoresuscitation. The Determination of Cardiac Death Practices in Intensive Care Survey was sent to all intensive care physicians. Fifty-five percent of 568 Dutch intensive care physicians responded. Most respondents learned death determination from clinical practice. The most commonly used tests for death determination were flat arterial line tracing, flat electrocardiogram (standard 3-lead electrocardiogram), and fixed and dilated pupils. Rarely used tests were absence pulse by echo Doppler, absent blood pressure by noninvasive monitoring, and unresponsiveness to painful stimulus. No diagnostic test or procedure was uniformly performed, but 80% of respondents perceived a need for standardization of death determination. Autoresuscitation was witnessed by 37%, after withdrawal of treatment or after unsuccessful resuscitation. Extensive variability in the practice of determining death after circulatory arrest exists, and a need for guidelines and standardization, especially if organ donation follows death, is reported. Autoresuscitation is reported; this observation requires attention in further prospective observational studies. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Riccomini, Paul J.; Morano, Stephanie; Hughes, Charles A.
It is understandable that misuse of the terms "specially designed instruction" (SDI), "high-leverage practices" (HLPs), "explicit instruction" (EI), and "intensive instruction"(II) has bred confusion among professionals, and this confusion may lead to miscommunication and misunderstandings in the field.…
Jansa, Jan; Erb, Angela; Oberholzer, Hans-Rudolf; Smilauer, Petr; Egli, Simon
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are ubiquitous soil fungi, forming mutualistic symbiosis with a majority of terrestrial plant species. They are abundant in nearly all soils, less diverse than soil prokaryotes and other intensively studied soil organisms and thus are promising candidates for universal indicators of land management legacies and soil quality degradation. However, insufficient data on how the composition of indigenous AMF varies along soil and landscape gradients have hampered the definition of baselines and effect thresholds to date. Here, indigenous AMF communities in 154 agricultural soils collected across Switzerland were profiled by quantitative real-time PCR with taxon-specific markers for six widespread AMF species. To identify the key determinants of AMF community composition, the profiles were related to soil properties, land management and site geography. Our results indicate a number of well-supported dependencies between abundances of certain AMF taxa and soil properties such as pH, soil fertility and texture, and a surprising lack of effect of available soil phosphorus on the AMF community profiles. Site geography, especially the altitude and large geographical distance, strongly affected AMF communities. Unexpected was the apparent lack of a strong land management effect on the AMF communities as compared to the other predictors, which could be due to the rarity of highly intensive and unsustainable land management in Swiss agriculture. In spite of the extensive coverage of large geographical and soil gradients, we did not identify any taxon suitable as an indicator of land use among the six taxa we studied. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Clark, Nitasha M.; Cushing, Lisa S.; Kennedy, Craig H.
The authors examined the effects of an intensive onsite technical assistance (IOTA) model on the inclusive practices of special educators. Three special educators received technical assistance that included performance assessments, workshops on inclusive practices, and intensive onsite follow-up support. Inclusive practices were measured using…
Vina, Andres; Peters, Albert J.; Ji, Lei
There is a global concern about the increase in atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases. One method being discussed to encourage greenhouse gas mitigation efforts is based on a trading system whereby carbon emitters can buy effective mitigation efforts from farmers implementing conservation tillage practices. These practices sequester carbon from the atmosphere, and such a trading system would require a low-cost and accurate method of verification. Remote sensing technology can offer such a verification technique. This paper is focused on the use of standard image processing procedures applied to a multispectral Ikonos image, to determine whether it is possible to validate that farmers have complied with agreements to implement conservation tillage practices. A principal component analysis (PCA) was performed in order to isolate image variance in cropped fields. Analyses of variance (ANOVA) statistical procedures were used to evaluate the capability of each Ikonos band and each principal component to discriminate between conventional and conservation tillage practices. A logistic regression model was implemented on the principal component most effective in discriminating between conventional and conservation tillage, in order to produce a map of the probability of conventional tillage. The Ikonos imagery, in combination with ground-reference information, proved to be a useful tool for verification of conservation tillage practices.
Carone, Laura; Alurkar, Shrirang; Kigozi, Phoebe; Vyas, Harish
Approximately 2% of those on the organ transplant list in the UK are children. Early identification of donors and referral to organ donation teams (ODT) has proven to increase both the success rate of gaining consent and the number of organs actually retrieved. To evaluate the practice relating to organ donation for children receiving end-of-life care on a paediatric intensive care unit (PICU) measured against the National Guidelines. All children 0-18 who received their end-of-life care and died on the PICU. A retrospective cohort study of organ donation patterns including referral, approach, consent and donation. This involved a review of case notes on PICU between the years 2009 and 2014. One hundred five deaths were identified and 100 notes were examined and data analysed to ascertain if religion, age and length of stay on PICU impacted on practice. Eighty-six children met the early identification criteria for potential donors, 40 (46.5%) children were referred to the ODT and 33 (38.3%) families were approached regarding donation. Twenty-one (24.4%) families consented to donation. Seventeen donations took place with a total of 41 sets of organs/tissues retrieved. Despite the majority of children meeting early identification for potential donors, many were not being referred. All children on end-of-life care should be referred for potential organ donation. Organ donation needs to be seen as a priority for hospitals as a part of routine end-of-life care to help increase referral rates and give families the opportunity to donate. Many paediatric deaths are not referred for consideration of organ donation, despite guidelines stating that this process should be standard of care. Further optimization of referral rates may aid in increasing the number of organs available for donation. What is Known: • Shortage of organs continues to be a national problem. • NICE guidelines state that all patients who are on end-of-life care should have the option of organ donation
Eythórsson, Einar; Tombre, Ingunn M; Madsen, Jesper
In 2012, the four countries hosting the Svalbard population of pink-footed goose Anser brachyrhynchus along its flyway launched an International Species Management Plan for the population. One of the aims was to reduce conflicts between geese and agriculture to an acceptable level. Since 2006, Norway has offered subsidies to farmers that provide refuge areas for geese on their land. We evaluate the mid-Norwegian goose management subsidy scheme, with a view to its adjustment to prevailing ecological and socio-economic parameters. The analysis indicates that the legitimacy of the scheme is highly dependent on transparency of knowledge management and accountability of management scheme to the farming community. Among farmers, as well as front-line officials, outcomes of prioritisation processes within the scheme are judged unfair when there is an evident mismatch between payments and genuine damage. We suggest how the scheme can be made more fair and responsive to ecological changes, within a framework of adaptive management.
Farooq, S H; Chandrasekharam, D; Berner, Z; Norra, S; Stüben, D
In the wake of the idea that surface derived dissolved organic carbon (DOC) plays an important role in the mobilization of arsenic (As) from sediments to groundwater and may provide a vital tool in understanding the mechanism of As contamination (mobilization/fixation) in Bengal delta; a study has been carried out. Agricultural fields that mainly cultivate rice (paddy fields) leave significantly large quantities of organic matter/organic carbon on the surface of Bengal delta which during monsoon starts decomposing and produces DOC. The DOC thus produced percolates down with rain water and mobilizes As from the sediments. Investigations on sediment samples collected from a paddy field clearly indicate that As coming on to the surface along with the irrigation water accumulates itself in the top few meters of sediment profile. The column experiments carried out on a 9 m deep sediment profile demonstrates that DOC has a strong potential to mobilize As from the paddy fields and the water recharging the aquifer through such agricultural fields contain As well above the WHO limit thus contaminating the shallow groundwater. Experiment also demonstrates that decay of organic matter induces reducing condition in the sediments. Progressively increasing reducing conditions not only prevent the adsorption of As on mineral surfaces but also cause mobilization of previously sorbed arsenic. There seems to be a cyclic pattern where As from deeper levels comes to the surface with irrigational water, accumulates itself in the sediments, and ultimately moves down to the shallow groundwater. The extensive and continual exploitation of intermediate/deep groundwater accelerates this cyclic process and helps in the movement of shallow contaminated groundwater to the deeper levels. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Shen, Jianbo; Li, Chunjian; Mi, Guohua; Li, Long; Yuan, Lixing; Jiang, Rongfeng; Zhang, Fusuo
Root and rhizosphere research has been conducted for many decades, but the underlying strategy of root/rhizosphere processes and management in intensive cropping systems remain largely to be determined. Improved grain production to meet the food demand of an increasing population has been highly dependent on chemical fertilizer input based on the traditionally assumed notion of 'high input, high output', which results in overuse of fertilizers but ignores the biological potential of roots or rhizosphere for efficient mobilization and acquisition of soil nutrients. Root exploration in soil nutrient resources and root-induced rhizosphere processes plays an important role in controlling nutrient transformation, efficient nutrient acquisition and use, and thus crop productivity. The efficiency of root/rhizosphere in terms of improved nutrient mobilization, acquisition, and use can be fully exploited by: (1) manipulating root growth (i.e. root development and size, root system architecture, and distribution); (2) regulating rhizosphere processes (i.e. rhizosphere acidification, organic anion and acid phosphatase exudation, localized application of nutrients, rhizosphere interactions, and use of efficient crop genotypes); and (3) optimizing root zone management to synchronize root growth and soil nutrient supply with demand of nutrients in cropping systems. Experiments have shown that root/rhizosphere management is an effective approach to increase both nutrient use efficiency and crop productivity for sustainable crop production. The objectives of this paper are to summarize the principles of root/rhizosphere management and provide an overview of some successful case studies on how to exploit the biological potential of root system and rhizosphere processes to improve crop productivity and nutrient use efficiency.
Lázaro-Martín, N I; Catalán-González, M; García-Fuentes, C; Terceros-Almanza, L; Montejo-González, J C
To analyze the nutritional management practices in Intensive Care (ICU) to detect the need for improvement actions. Re-evaluate the process after implementation of improvement actions. Prospective observational study in 3 phases: 1) observation; 2) analysis, proposal development and dissemination; 3) analysis of the implementation. ICU of a hospital of high complexity. Adult ICU forecast more than 48h of artificial nutrition. Parenteral nutrition (PN), enteral nutrition (EN) (type, average effective volume, complications) and average nutritional ratio. A total of 229 patients (phase 1: 110, phase 3: 119). After analyzing the initial results, were proposed: increased use and precocity of EN, increased protein intake, nutritional monitoring effectiveness and increased supplementary indication NP. The measures were broadcast at specific meetings. During phase 3 more patients received EN (55.5 vs. 78.2%, P=.001), with no significant difference in the start time (1.66 vs. 2.33 days), duration (6.82 vs. 10,12 days) or complications (37,7 vs. 47,3%).Use of hyperproteic diets was higher in phase 3 (0 vs. 13.01%, P<.05). The use of NP was similar (48.2 vs. 48,7%) with a tendency to a later onset in phase 3 (1.25±1.25 vs. 2.45±3.22 days). There were no significant differences in the average nutritional ratio (0.56±0.28 vs. 0.61±0.27, P=.56). The use of EN and the protein intake increased, without appreciating effects on other improvement measures. Other methods appear to be necessary for the proper implementation of improvement measures. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier España, S.L.U. and SEMICYUC. All rights reserved.
Koal, Philipp; Schilling, Rolf; Gerl, Georg; Pritsch, Karin; Munch, Jean Charles
In order to achieve a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, modern agronomic management practices need to be established. Therefore, to assess the effect of different farming practices on greenhouse gas emissions, reliable data are required. The experiment covers and compares main aspects of agricultural management for a better implementation of sustainable land use. The focus lies on the determination and interpretation of greenhouse gas emissions, where the effects of diverse tillage systems and fertilisation practices of an integrated farming system as well as the impacts of extreme weather conditions are observed. In addition, with analysis of the alterable biological, physical and chemical soil properties a link between the impact of different management systems on greenhouse gas emissions and the observed cycle of matter in the soil, especially the nitrogen and carbon cycle, is enabled. Measurements have been carried out on long-term field trials at the Research Farm Scheyern located in a Tertiary hilly landscape approximately 40 km north of Munich (South Germany). The long-term integrated farming system trial was started in 1992. Since then parcels of land (each around 0.2-0.4 ha) with a particular interior plot set-up have been conducted with the same crop rotation, tillage and fertilisation practice referring to integrated farming management. Thus, the management impacts on the soil of more than 20 years have been examined. Fluxes of CH4, N2O and CO2 have been monitored since 2007 for the integrated farming system trial using an automated system which consists of chambers (0.4 m2 area) with a motor-driven lid, an automated gas sampling unit, an on-line gas chromatographic analysis system, and a control and data logging unit. Precipitation and temperature data have been observed for the experimental field to include weather effects. The main outcomes are the analysis of temporal and spatial dynamics of greenhouse gas emissions influenced by management
Klarskov, Pia; Bang, Lia E; Schultz-Larsen, Peter; Gregers Petersen, Hans; Benee Olsen, David; Berg, Ronan M G; Abrahamsen, Henrik; Wiinberg, Niels
To compare the effect of a conventional to an intensive blood pressure monitoring regimen on blood pressure in hypertensive patients in the general practice setting. Randomized controlled parallel group trial with 12-month follow-up. One hundred and ten general practices in all regions of Denmark. One thousand forty-eight patients with essential hypertension. Conventional blood pressure monitoring ('usual group') continued usual ad hoc blood pressure monitoring by office blood pressure measurements, while intensive blood pressure monitoring ('intensive group') supplemented this with frequent home blood pressure monitoring and 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring. Mean day- and night-time systolic and diastolic 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure. Change in systolic and diastolic office blood pressure and change in cardiovascular risk profile. Of the patients, 515 (49%) were allocated to the usual group, and 533 (51%) to the intensive group. The reductions in day- and night-time 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure were similar (usual group: 4.6 ± 13.5/2.8 ± 82 mmHg; intensive group: 5.6 ± 13.0/3.5 ± 8.2 mmHg; P = 0.27/P = 0.20). Cardiovascular risk scores were reduced in both groups at follow-up, but more so in the intensive than in the usual group (P = 0.02). An intensive blood pressure monitoring strategy led to a similar blood pressure reduction to conventional monitoring. However, the intensive strategy appeared to improve patients' cardiovascular risk profile through other effects than a reduction of blood pressure. Clinical Trials NCT00244660. © The Author 2018. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: email@example.com.
Kritee, K.; Ahuja, R.; Nair, D.; Esteves, T.; Rudek, J.; Thu Ha, T.
Industrial agriculture systems, mostly in developed and some emerging economies, are far different from the small-holder farms (size <1 acre) in Asia and Africa. Along with our partners from non-governmental, corporate, academic and government sectors and tens of thousands of farming families, we have worked actively in five states in India and two provinces in Vietnam for the last five years to understand how sustainable and climate smart farming practices can be monitored at small-holder farms. Here, any approach to monitor farming must begin by accounting for the tremendous management variability from farm to farm and also the current inability to ground-truth remote sensing data due to lack of relaible basic parameters (e.g., yields, N use, farm boundaries) which are necessary for calibrating empirical/biogeochemical models. While we continue to learn from new research, we have found that it is crucial to follow some steps if sustainable farming programs are to succeed at small-holder farms Demographic data collection and GPS plot demarcation to establish farm size and ownership Baseline nutrient, water & energy use and crop yield determination via surveys and self-reporting which are verifiable through farmer networks given the importance of peer to peer learning in the dissemination of new techniques in such landscapes "Sustainable" practice determination in consultation with local universities/NGO experts Measurements on representative plots for 3-4 years to help calibrate biogeochemical models and/or empirical equations and establish which practices are truly "sustainable" (e.g., GHG emission reduction varies from 0-7 tCO2e/acre for different sustainable practices). Propagation of sustainable practices across the landscape via local NGOs/governments after analyzing the replicability of identified farming practices in the light of local financial, cultural or socio-political barriers. We will present results from representative plots (including soil and
Marañón-Jiménez, Sara; Serrano-Ortíz, Penelope; Vicente-Vicente, Jose Luis; Chamizo, Sonia; Kowalski, Andrew S.
Olive (Olea europaea) is the dominant agriculture plantation in Spain and its main product, olive oil, is vital to the economy of Mediterranean countries. Given the extensive surface dedicated to olive plantations, olive groves can potentially sequester large amounts of carbon and contribute to mitigate climate change. Their potential for carbon sequestration will, however, largely depend on the management and irrigation practices in the olive grove. Although soil respiration is the main path of C release from the terrestrial ecosystems to the atmosphere and a suitable indicator of soil health and fertility, the interaction of agricultural management practices with irrigation regimes on soil CO2 fluxes have not been assessed yet. Here we investigate the influence of the presence of herbaceous cover, use of artificial fertilizers and their interaction with the irrigation regime on the CO2 emission from the soil to the atmosphere. For this, the three agricultural management treatments were established in replicated plots in an olive grove in the SE of Spain: presence of herbaceous cover ("H"), exclusion of herbaceous cover by using herbicides ("NH"), and exclusion of herbaceous cover along with addition of artificial fertilizers (0.55 kg m-2 year-1 of N, P, K solid fertilizer in the proportion 20:10:10, "NHF"). Within each management treatment, three irrigation regimes were also implemented in a randomized design: no-irrigation ("NO") or rain fed, full irrigation (224 l week-1 per olive tree, "MAX"), and a 50% restriction (112 l week-1 per olive tree, "MED"). Soil respiration was measured every 2-3 weeks at 1, 3, and 5 meters from each olive tree together with soil temperature and soil moisture in order to account for the spatial and seasonal variability over the year. Soil respiration was higher when herbaceous cover was present compared to the herbaceous exclusion, whereas the addition of fertilizer did not exert any significant effect. Although the different
Despite progress in the implementation of conservation practices, related improvements in water quality have been challenging to measure in larger river systems. In this paper we quantify these downstream effects by applying the empirical U.S. Geological Survey water-quality model SPARROW to inves...
Marlenga, Barbara; Pahwa, Punam; Hagel, Louise; Dosman, James; Pickett, William
Objectives: To characterize working hours of adult farm owner-operators and their spouses by season, and to examine associations between working hours and farm safety practices affecting children. Methods: We conducted a secondary analysis of cross-sectional survey data collected as part of an existing study of injury and its determinants.…
Fetsch, Robert J.; Jackman, Danielle M.
Disability rates resulting from work-related injuries remain steadily high among farmers and ranchers. To address the gap in services within this population, USDA implemented AgrAbility nationally. Using part of Bennett's hierarchical model, the current study evaluated the KASA and practice change levels of 401 farmers and ranchers and compared…
Paul H. Gobster
Landscape and Urban Planning encourages multiple perspectives and approaches to help understand landscapes as social-ecological systems, with the goal that by building a robust science of landscape we can provide sustainable solutions for guiding its change. But the link between science and practice, or more simply put, between knowledge and action, is not always clear...
Sa'ad, Tata Umar; Sabo, Shehu; Abdullahi, Aliyu Dahuwa
Micro-teaching and teaching practices are two integral parts of teacher education programme. Therefore, this study investigated the impact of micro-teaching on the teaching practice of the undergraduate Agricultural Education Students admitted in 2012/2013 Academic session in College of Education, Azare, Bauchi State, Nigeria. The 400 level…
Huang, Jinhui Jeanne; Chan, Han
ABSTRACT Evapotranspiration (ET) has long been regarded as a very important component in energy and mass exchange between hydrosphere, atmosphere and biosphere. It is estimated that about 70% annual precipitation goes back to atmosphere through the process of ET, ET thus plays a significant role in modeling regional and global climate and assessing stresses on natural and agricultural ecosystems. The variation of ET is affected by many processes including hydrological, metrological as well as biological processes. Water used in Agriculture Sector is normally accounted for about 70% of total water consumption. ET may also be enhanced by agriculture practices as it is the key component of water consumption in agriculture practices. A two-year continuous in-situ ET measurement (in half minute time scale) by eddy covariance method (using EC-QCL analyzer and three-dimensional ultrasonic anemometer) was conducted in a large vegetable farmland in the suburb of Yueyang City, Hunan Province. EddyPro software was employed to calculate the actual evapotranspiration, water vapor flux, latent heat flux (LE) and analysis the trend of actual evapotranspiration in different time scales. A RZWQM2 (Root Zone Water Quality Model) model was also developed based on the local metrological data and agriculture practices including planting, harvesting, irrigation practices and fertilization etc., The field observations including in-situ ET measurement are used to calibrate the RZWQM2 model. The calibrated model was further used to study the effects of various agriculture activates on ET. The study shows that the crop density has the greatest effects on the variation of plant transpiration following by irrigation and fertilization. This study provides some scientific basis for the optimization and improvement of agricultural activities in the future. Key words: ET; Agricultural Practices; Eddy Covariance Method; RZWQM2 model
Rabotyagov, Sergey; Campbell, Todd; Valcu, Adriana; Gassman, Philip; Jha, Manoj; Schilling, Keith; Wolter, Calvin; Kling, Catherine
Finding the cost-efficient (i.e., lowest-cost) ways of targeting conservation practice investments for the achievement of specific water quality goals across the landscape is of primary importance in watershed management. Traditional economics methods of finding the lowest-cost solution in the watershed context (e.g.,(5,12,20)) assume that off-site impacts can be accurately described as a proportion of on-site pollution generated. Such approaches are unlikely to be representative of the actual pollution process in a watershed, where the impacts of polluting sources are often determined by complex biophysical processes. The use of modern physically-based, spatially distributed hydrologic simulation models allows for a greater degree of realism in terms of process representation but requires a development of a simulation-optimization framework where the model becomes an integral part of optimization. Evolutionary algorithms appear to be a particularly useful optimization tool, able to deal with the combinatorial nature of a watershed simulation-optimization problem and allowing the use of the full water quality model. Evolutionary algorithms treat a particular spatial allocation of conservation practices in a watershed as a candidate solution and utilize sets (populations) of candidate solutions iteratively applying stochastic operators of selection, recombination, and mutation to find improvements with respect to the optimization objectives. The optimization objectives in this case are to minimize nonpoint-source pollution in the watershed, simultaneously minimizing the cost of conservation practices. A recent and expanding set of research is attempting to use similar methods and integrates water quality models with broadly defined evolutionary optimization methods(3,4,9,10,13-15,17-19,22,23,25). In this application, we demonstrate a program which follows Rabotyagov et al.'s approach and integrates a modern and commonly used SWAT water quality model(7) with a
Braun, Gina; Austin, Christy; Ledbetter-Cho, Katherine
Iurian, Andra-Rada; Csaba Begy, Robert; Szabolcs, Kelemen; Simon, Hedvig; Martonos, Ildiko Melinda; Mircea Margineanu, Romul
Well preserved lacustrine and wetland areas of special ecological interest from Ialomitei and Danube River Basins were investigated with the aim to assess temporal and spatial variability in sediment accumulation rates in relation to the multiple socio-economic and political changes that occurred with the rise and fall of socialism (1948-1989) in Romania. These shifts in the political systems resulted in space dynamics of the main land use/cover classes and their quality, a new type of landed property and land exploitation. The temporal context for the study (last 100 years) was provided by Pb-210 geochronology with Chernobyl Cs-137 as independent chronological marker. The study sites are located on the Southern Romanian Plain (Danube Plain), the main agricultural area in Romania, well known for high productivity of soils and good crop yields. The post-communist land reform resulted in the excessive fragmentation of farm land and the marked degradation of soil quality, leading to increased land vulnerability to extreme weathering and eventually to its abandonment in low-productive regions. The results are discussed in the context of the chronological data, sediment composition and historic meteorological records. Acknowledgements: This work was supported by a grant of the Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research and Innovation, CNCS - UEFISCDI, project number PN-II-RU-TE-2014-4-1772.
Molento, Marcelo Beltrão
The benefits of using antiparasitic drugs in farm animals are unquestionable. However, despite anthelmintic use as the predominant control strategy, extreme parasite infection cases are appearing in sheep and goat production; these impact productivity and have show mortality rates reaching pre-drug use levels. This was a predictable situation resulting from the loss of efficacy by all available products, particularly when some products were used as the sole intervention. The concepts of agroecology and holistic agriculture, which advocate the use of integrated management strategies, such as target selected treatment, herbal medicine, and the application of other parasite control alternatives, are not completely new, but are undergoing a resurgence because of their more sustainable appeal. The objective of this review article is to examine the problem of parasite control in the face of parasite drug resistance and to outline some strategies that may be used in parasite control programmes. Before they are accepted and recommended by the WAAVP, agroecological methods such as those listed above and described in detail herein should be validated based on scientific evidence of their efficacy for parasite control and should be tested for both host and environmental safety.
Sun, Shanxia; Delgado, Michael S; Sesmero, Juan P
Input- and output-based economic policies designed to reduce water pollution from fertilizer runoff by adjusting management practices are theoretically justified and well-understood. Yet, in practice, adjustment in fertilizer application or land allocation may be sluggish. We provide practical guidance for policymakers regarding the relative magnitude and speed of adjustment of input- and output-based policies. Through a dynamic dual model of corn production that takes fertilizer as one of several production inputs, we measure the short- and long-term effects of policies that affect the relative prices of inputs and outputs through the short- and long-term price elasticities of fertilizer application, and also the total time required for different policies to affect fertilizer application through the adjustment rates of capital and land. These estimates allow us to compare input- and output-based policies based on their relative cost-effectiveness. Using data from Indiana and Illinois, we find that input-based policies are more cost-effective than their output-based counterparts in achieving a target reduction in fertilizer application. We show that input- and output-based policies yield adjustment in fertilizer application at the same speed, and that most of the adjustment takes place in the short-term. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Chi, Jinshu; Waldo, Sarah; Pressley, Shelley N.; Russell, Eric S.; O'Keeffe, Patrick T.; Pan, William L.; Huggins, David R.; Stöckle, Claudio O.; Brooks, Erin S.; Lamb, Brian K.
Cropland is an important land cover influencing global carbon and water cycles. Variability of agricultural carbon and water fluxes depends on crop species, management practices, soil characteristics, and climatic conditions. In the context of climate change, it is critical to quantify the long-term effects of these environmental drivers and farming activities on carbon and water dynamics. Twenty site-years of carbon and water fluxes covering a large precipitation gradient and a variety of crop species and management practices were measured in the inland Pacific Northwest using the eddy covariance method. The rain-fed fields were net carbon sinks, while the irrigated site was close to carbon neutral during the winter wheat crop years. Sites growing spring crops were either carbon sinks, sources, or neutral, varying with crops, rainfall zones, and tillage practices. Fluxes were more sensitive to variability in precipitation than temperature: annual carbon and water fluxes increased with the increasing precipitation while only respiration increased with temperature in the high-rainfall area. Compared to a nearby rain-fed site, irrigation improved winter wheat production but resulted in large losses of carbon and water to the atmosphere. Compared to conventional tillage, no-till had significantly lower respiration but resulted in slightly lower yields and water use efficiency over 4 years. Under future climate change, it is expected that more carbon fixation by crops and evapotranspiration would occur in a warmer and wetter environment.
Verzeaux, Julien; Hirel, Bertrand; Dubois, Frédéric; Lea, Peter J; Tétu, Thierry
Nitrogen cycling in agroecosystems is heavily dependent upon arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) present in the soil microbiome. These fungi develop obligate symbioses with various host plant species, thus increasing their ability to acquire nutrients. However, AMF are particularly sensitive to physical, chemical and biological disturbances caused by human actions that limit their establishment. For a more sustainable agriculture, it will be necessary to further investigate which agricultural practices could be favorable to maximize the benefits of AMF to improve crop nitrogen use efficiency (NUE), thus reducing nitrogen (N) fertilizer usage. Direct seeding, mulch-based cropping systems prevent soil mycelium disruption and increase AMF propagule abundance. Such cropping systems lead to more efficient root colonization by AMF and thus a better establishment of the plant/fungal symbiosis. In addition, the use of continuous cover cropping systems can also enhance the formation of more efficient interconnected hyphal networks between mycorrhizae colonized plants. Taking into account both fundamental and agronomic aspects of mineral nutrition by plant/AMF symbioses, we have critically described, how improving fungal colonization through the reduction of soil perturbation and maintenance of an ecological balance could be helpful for increasing crop NUE. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Day, T; Wainwright, S P; Wilson-Barnett, J
Endotracheal suctioning is a frequently performed procedure that has many associated risks and complications. It is imperative that nurses are aware of these risks and are able to practise according to current research recommendations. This study was designed to examine to what extent intensive care nurses' knowledge and practice of endotracheal suctioning is based on research evidence, to investigate the relationships between knowledge and practice, and to evaluate the effectiveness of a research-based teaching programme. This quasi-experimental study was a randomized, controlled, single-blinded comparison of two research-based teaching programmes, with 16 intensive care nurses, using non-participant observation and a self-report questionnaire. Initial baseline data revealed a low level of knowledge for many participants, which was also reflected in practice, as suctioning was performed against many of the research recommendations. Following teaching, significant improvements were seen in both knowledge and practice. Four weeks later these differences were generally sustained, and provide evidence of the effectiveness of the educational intervention. The study raised concern about all aspects of endotracheal suctioning and highlighted the need for changes in nursing practice, with clinical guidelines and focused practice-based education.
Nordon-Craft, Amy; Malone, Daniel; Luby, Darcie M.; Schenkman, Margaret; Moss, Marc
Background Although studies have established the safety and feasibility of physical therapy in the critical care setting, minimal information about physical therapist practice in the neurological intensive care unit (NICU) is available. Objective This study describes physical therapists' treatment of people admitted to a NICU. Design People admitted to the NICU with a diagnosis of subarachnoid hemorrhage, subdural hematoma, intracranial hemorrhage, or trauma were retrospectively studied. Methods Data on patient demographics, use of mechanical ventilation, and intracranial pressure (ICP) monitoring were collected. For each physical therapy session, the length of the session, the location (NICU or post-NICU setting), and the presence of mechanical ventilation or ICP monitoring were recorded. Data on safety parameters, including vital sign response, falls, and dislodgement of lines, were collected. Results Over 1 year, 180 people were admitted to the NICU; 86 were evaluated by a physical therapist, for a total of 293 physical therapy sessions in the NICU (n=132) or post-NICU setting (n=161). Only one session (0.3%) was stopped, secondary to an increase in ICP. The first physical therapy session occurred on NICU day 3.0 (25%–75% interquartile range=2.0–6.0). Patients received a median of 3.4 sessions per week (25%–75% interquartile range=1.8–5.9). Patients with mechanical ventilation received less frequent physical therapy sessions than those without mechanical ventilation. Patients with ICP monitoring received less frequent sessions than those without ICP monitoring. However, after multivariate analysis, only the admission Glasgow Coma Score was independently associated with physical therapy frequency in the NICU. Patients were more likely to stand, transfer, and walk in the post-NICU setting than in the NICU. Limitations The results are limited by the retrospective, single-center nature of the study. There is inherent bias of evaluating only those patients
Bendavid, Itai; Singer, Pierre; Theilla, Miriam; Themessl-Huber, Michael; Sulz, Isabella; Mouhieddine, Mohamed; Schuh, Christian; Mora, Bruno; Hiesmayr, Michael
To determine the nutrition practice in intensive care units and the associated outcome across the world, a yearly 1 day cross sectional audit was performed from 2007 to 2013. The data of this initiative called "nutritionDay ICU" were analyzed. A questionnaire translated in 17 languages was used to determine the unit's characteristics, patient's condition, nutrition condition and therapy as well as outcome. All the patients present in the morning of the 1 day prevalence study were included from 2007 to 2013. 9777 patients from 46 countries and 880 units were included. Their SAPS 2 was median 38 (IQR 27-51), predicted mortality was 30.7% ± 26.9, and their SOFA score 4.5 ± 3.4 with median 4 (IQR 2-7). Administration of calories did not appear to be related to actual or ideal body weight within all BMI groups. Patients with a BMI <18.5 or >40 received slightly less calories than all other BMI groups. Two third of the patients were either ventilated or were in the ICU for longer than 24 h at nutritionDay. Routes of feeding used were the oral, enteral and parenteral routes. More than 40% of the patients were not fed during the first day. The mean energy administered using enteral route was 1286 ± 663 kcal/day and using parenteral nutrition 1440 ± 652 kcal/day. 60 days mortality was 26.0%. This very large collaborative cohort study shows that most of the patients are underfed during according to actual recommendations their ICU stay. Prescribed calories appear to be ordered regardless to the ideal weight of the patient. Nutritional support is slow to start and never reaches the recommended targets. Parenteral nutrition prescription is increasing during the ICU stay but reaching only 20% of the population studied if ICU stay is one week or longer. The nutritional support worldwide does not seem to be guided by weight or disease but more to be standardized and limited to a certain level of calories. These observations are showing the poor observance to
Kornhauser, A. L.; Wilson, L. B.
Potential economic benefits obtainable from a state-of-the-art ERS system in the resource area of intensive use of living resources, agriculture, are studied. A spectrum of equal capability (cost saving), increased capability, and new capability benefits are quantified. These benefits are estimated via ECON developed models of the agricultural marketplace and include benefits of improved production and distribution of agricultural crops. It is shown that increased capability benefits and new capability benefits result from a reduction of losses due to disease and insect infestation given ERS's capability to distinguish crop vigor and from the improvement in world trade negotiations given ERS's worldwide surveying capability.
Smith, Griffin W; Debinski, Diane M; Scavo, Nicole A; Lange, Corey J; Delaney, John T; Moranz, Raymond A; Miller, James R; Engle, David M; Toth, Amy L
Grasslands provide important resources for pollinators in agricultural landscapes. Managing grasslands with fire and grazing has the potential to benefit plant and pollinator communities, though there is uncertainty about the ideal approach. We examined the relationships among burning and grazing regimes, plant communities, and Bombus species and Apis mellifera L. abundance and nutritional indicators at the Grand River Grasslands in southern Iowa and northern Missouri. Treatment regimes included burn-only, grazed-and-burned, and patch-burn graze (pastures subdivided into three temporally distinct fire patches with free access by cattle). The premise of the experimental design was that patch-burn grazing would increase habitat heterogeneity, thereby providing more diverse and abundant floral resources for pollinators. We predicted that both bee abundance and individual bee nutritional indicators (bee size and lipid content) would be positively correlated with floral resource abundance. There were no significant differences among treatments with respect to bee abundance. However, some of the specific characteristics of the plant community showed significant relationships with bee response variables. Pastures with greater abundance of floral resources had greater bee abundance but lower bee nutritional indicators. Bee nutritional variables were positively correlated with vegetation height, but, in some cases, negatively correlated with stocking rate. These results suggest grassland site characteristics such as floral resource abundance and stocking rate are of potential importance to bee pollinators and suggest avenues for further research to untangle the complex interactions between grassland management, plant responses, and bee health. © The Authors 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ndah, Hycenth Tim; Schuler, Johannes; Uthes, Sandra; Zander, Peter; Traore, Karim; Gama, Mphatso-S; Nyagumbo, Isaiah; Triomphe, Bernard; Sieber, Stefan; Corbeels, Marc
Despite the reported benefits of conservation agriculture (CA), its wider up-scaling in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) has remained fairly limited. This paper shows how a newly developed qualitative expert assessment approach for CA adoption (QAToCA) was applied to determine its adoption potential in SSA. CA adoption potential is not a predictor of observed adoption rates. Instead, our aim was to systematically check relevant factors that may be influencing its adoption. QAToCA delivers an assessment of how suitable conditions "and thus the likelihood for CA adoption" are. Results show that the high CA adoption potentials exhibited by the Malawi and Zambia case relate mostly to positive institutional factors. On the other hand, the low adoption potential of the Zimbabwe case, in spite of observed higher estimates, is attributed mainly to unstable and less secured market conditions for CA. In the case of Southern Burkina Faso, the potential for CA adoption is determined to be high, and this assessment deviates from lower observed figures. This is attributed mainly to strong competition of CA and livestock for residues in this region. Lastly, the high adoption potential found in Northern Burkina Faso is explained mainly by the fact that farmers here have no alternative other than to adopt the locally adapted CA system-Zaï farming. Results of this assessment should help promoters of CA in the given regions to reflect on their activities and to eventually adjust or redesign them based on a more explicit understanding of where problems and opportunities are found.
Cifuentes, E; Villanueva, J; Sanin, L H
To investigate whether the agricultural use of untreated wastewater (i.e. crop irrigation) was associated with elevated blood lead levels in a farming population in the Mezquital Valley and which risk factors, other than exposure to untreated wastewater, were associated with elevated blood lead levels, lead levels were measured in venous blood obtained from 735 individuals. Blood samples were analyzed by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Food habits and dietary intake were gathered by interview, using a semi-quantitative food-frequency questionnaire. The average blood lead level was 7.8 microg/dL (SD 4.66 microg/dL; range 1.2-36.7 microg/dL). 23% of the study population had blood lead levels exceeding 10 microg/dL. The use of lead-glazed ceramics (LGC) was significantly associated with elevated lead levels (p = < 0.001). Other significant variables included age, gender (males), and non-farming-related occupations (e.g., technicians, factory workers). p = 0.005, 0.08, and 0.001, respectively. When the analysis was stratified by the use of LGC for food preparation, an inverse relationship between higher daily calcium intake and blood lead level was detected (beta = - 0.040, p = < 0.05). Thus, blood lead levels were positively associated with the use of LGC. Calcium intake showed a protective effect, maybe by decreasing absorption of lead in the gastrointestinal tract. No association between occupational exposure to untreated wastewater or crop consumption and blood lead levels was detected. Further environmental and health surveillance is recommended.
Ndah, Hycenth Tim; Schuler, Johannes; Uthes, Sandra; Zander, Peter; Traore, Karim; Gama, Mphatso-S.; Nyagumbo, Isaiah; Triomphe, Bernard; Sieber, Stefan; Corbeels, Marc
Despite the reported benefits of conservation agriculture (CA), its wider up-scaling in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) has remained fairly limited. This paper shows how a newly developed qualitative expert assessment approach for CA adoption (QAToCA) was applied to determine its adoption potential in SSA. CA adoption potential is not a predictor of observed adoption rates. Instead, our aim was to systematically check relevant factors that may be influencing its adoption. QAToCA delivers an assessment of how suitable conditions "and thus the likelihood for CA adoption" are. Results show that the high CA adoption potentials exhibited by the Malawi and Zambia case relate mostly to positive institutional factors. On the other hand, the low adoption potential of the Zimbabwe case, in spite of observed higher estimates, is attributed mainly to unstable and less secured market conditions for CA. In the case of Southern Burkina Faso, the potential for CA adoption is determined to be high, and this assessment deviates from lower observed figures. This is attributed mainly to strong competition of CA and livestock for residues in this region. Lastly, the high adoption potential found in Northern Burkina Faso is explained mainly by the fact that farmers here have no alternative other than to adopt the locally adapted CA system—Zaï farming. Results of this assessment should help promoters of CA in the given regions to reflect on their activities and to eventually adjust or redesign them based on a more explicit understanding of where problems and opportunities are found.
Renard, Catherine M. G. C.; Plenet, Daniel; Gautier, Hélène; Touloumet, Line; Girard, Thierry; Simon, Sylvaine
Many biotic and abiotic parameters affect the metabolites involved in the organoleptic and health value of fruits. It is therefore important to understand how the growers' decisions for cultivar and orchard management can affect the fruit composition. Practices, cultivars and/or year all might participate to determine fruit composition. To hierarchize these factors, fruit weight, dry matter, soluble solids contents, titratable acidity, individual sugars and organics acids, and phenolics were measured in three apple cultivars (‘Ariane’, ‘Melrose’ and ‘Smoothee’) managed under organic, low-input and conventional management. Apples were harvested at commercial maturity in the orchards of the cropping system experiment BioREco at INRA Gotheron (Drôme, 26) over the course of three years (2011, 2012 and 2013). The main factors affecting primary and secondary metabolites, in both apple skin and flesh, were by far the cultivar and the yearly conditions, while the management system had a very limited effect. When considering the three cultivars and the year 2011 to investigate the effect of the management system per se, only few compounds differed significantly between the three systems and in particular the total phenolic content did not differ significantly between systems. Finally, when considering orchards grown in the same pedoclimatic conditions and of the same age, instead of the usual organic vs. conventional comparison, the effect of the management system on the apple fruit quality (Fruit weight, dry matter, soluble solids content, titratable acidity, individual sugars, organic acids, and phenolics) was very limited to non-significant. The main factors of variation were the cultivar and the year of cropping rather than the cropping system. More generally, as each management system (e.g. conventional, organic…) encompasses a great variability of practices, this highlights the importance of accurately documenting orchard practices and design beside the
Nitrogen isotopic studies have the potential to shed light on the structure of ancient ecosystems, agropastoral regimes, and human-environment interactions. Until relatively recently, however, little attention was paid to the complexities of nitrogen transformations in ancient plant-soil systems and their potential impact on plant and animal tissue nitrogen isotopic compositions. This paper discusses the importance of understanding nitrogen dynamics in ancient contexts, and highlights several key areas of archaeology where a more detailed understanding of these processes may enable us to answer some fundamental questions. This paper explores two larger themes that are prominent in archaeological studies using stable nitrogen isotope analysis: (1) agricultural practices (use of animal fertilizers, burning of vegetation or shifting cultivation, and tillage) and (2) animal domestication and husbandry (grazing intensity/stocking rate and the foddering of domestic animals with cultigens). The paucity of plant material in ancient deposits necessitates that these issues are addressed primarily through the isotopic analysis of skeletal material rather than the plants themselves, but the interpretation of these data hinges on a thorough understanding of the underlying biogeochemical processes in plant-soil systems. Building on studies conducted in modern ecosystems and under controlled conditions, these processes are reviewed, and their relevance discussed for ancient contexts. PMID:25002865
Pereg, Lily; Aldorri, Sind; McMillan, Mary
Wheat and cotton are important food and cash crops often grown in rotation on black, grey and red clay soil, in Australia. The common practice of nitrogen and phosphate fertilizers have been solely in the form of agrochemicals, however, a few growers have incorporated manure or composted plant material into the soil before planting. While the cotton yield in studied farms was comparable, we found that the use of such organic amendments significantly enhanced the pool of nitrogen cycling genes, suggesting increased potential of soil microbial function as well as increased microbial metabolic diversity and abundance. Therefore, the regular use of organic amendments contributed to improved soil sustainability.
Faust, Derek R.; Kröger, Robert; Miranda, Leandro E.; Rush, Scott A.
Agricultural fertilizer applications have resulted in loading of nutrients to agricultural drainage ditches in the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley. The purpose of this study was to determine effects of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and particulate organic carbon (POC) amendments on nitrate-nitrogen (NO3−-N) removal from overlying water, pore water, and sediment of an agricultural drainage ditch. Two experiments were conducted. In experiment 1, control (i.e., no amendment), DOC, and POC treatments were applied in laboratory microcosms for time intervals of 3, 7, 14, and 28 days. In experiment 2, control, DOC, and POC treatments were applied in microcosms at C/N ratios of 5:1, 10:1, 15:1, and 20:1. There were statistically significant effects of organic carbon amendments in experiment 1 (F2,71 = 27.1, P < 0.001) and experiment 2 (F2,53 = 39.1, P < 0.001), time (F1,71 = 14.5, P < 0.001) in experiment 1, and C/N ratio (F1,53 = 36.5, P < 0.001) in experiment 2. NO3−-N removal varied from 60 to 100 % in overlying water among all treatments. The lowest NO3−-N removals in experiment 1 were observed in the control at 14 and 28 days, which were significantly less than in DOC and POC 14- and 28-day treatments. In experiment 2, significantly less NO3−-N was removed in overlying water of the control compared to DOC and POC treatments at all C/N ratios. Amendments of DOC and POC made to drainage ditch sediment: (1) increased NO3−-N removal, especially over longer time intervals (14 to 28 days); (2) increased NO3−-N removal, regardless of C/N ratio; and (3) NO3−-N removal was best at a 5:1 C/N ratio. This study provides support for continued investigation on the use of organic carbon amendments as a best management practice for NO3−-N removal in agricultural drainage ditches.
Zhang, Fujin; He, Jiang; Yao, Yiping; Hou, Dekun; Jiang, Cai; Zhang, Xinxin; Di, Caixia; Otgonbayar, Khureldavaa
The spatial variability and temporal trend in concentrations of the organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) and dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), in soils and agricultural corps were investigated on an intensive horticulture area in Hohhot, North-West China, from 2008 to 2011. The most frequently found and abundant pesticides were the metabolites of DDT (p,p'-DDE, p,p'-DDT, o,p'-DDT and p,p'-DDD). Total DDT concentrations ranged from ND (not detectable) to 507.41 ng/g and were higher than the concentration of total HCHs measured for the range of 4.84-281.44 ng/g. There were significantly positive correlations between the ∑DDT and ∑HCH concentrations (r (2)>0.74) in soils, but no significant correlation was found between the concentrations of OCPs in soils and clay content while a relatively strong correlation was found between total OCP concentrations and total organic carbon (TOC). β-HCH was the main isomer of HCHs, and was detected in all samples; the maximum proportion of β-HCH compared to ∑HCHs (mean value 54%) was found, suggesting its persistence. The α/γ-HCH ratio was between 0.89 and 5.39, which signified the combined influence of technical HCHs and lindane. Low p,p'-DDE/p,p'-DDT in N1, N3 and N9 were found, reflecting the fresh input of DDTs, while the relatively high o,p'-DDT/p,p'-DDT ratios indicated the agricultural application of dicofol. Ratios of DDT/(DDE+DDD) in soils do not indicate recent inputs of DDT into Hohhot farmland soil environment. Seasonal variations of OCPs featured higher concentrations in autumn and lower concentrations in spring. This was likely associated with their temperature-driven re-volatilization and application of dicofol in late spring.
Rasoulzadeh Gharibdousti, S.; Stoecker, A.; Storm, D.
One of the main causes of water quality impairment in the United States is human induced Non-Point Source (NPS) pollution through intensive agriculture. The Fort Cobb Reservoir (FCR) watershed located in west-central Oklahoma, United States is a rural agricultural catchment with known issues of NPS pollution including suspended solids, siltation, nutrients, and pesticides. Recently, several Best Management Practices (BMPs) have been implemented in the watershed (such as no-tillage and cropland to grassland conversion) to improve water quality. The objective in this study is to estimate the most cost effective selection and placement of BMPs on farmlands to mitigate soil erosion and the delivery of sediment and nutrient loads to the FCR from Five Mile Creek (FMC) area of the FCR watershed. We employed the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) to develop the hydrological model of the study area. The watershed was delineated using the 10 m National Elevation Dataset and divided into 43 sub-basins with an average area of 8 km2. Through a combination of Soil Survey Geographic Database- SSURGO soil data, the US Department of Agriculture crop layer and the slope information, the watershed was further divided into 15,217 hydrologic response units (HRUs). The historical climate pattern in the watershed was represented by two different weather stations. The model was calibrated for the 1991 - 2000 period and validated over the 2001 - 2010 period against the monthly USGS observations of streamflow and suspended sediment concentration recorded at the watershed outlet. Model parametrization resulted in satisfactory values for the R2 (0.64, 0.35) and NS (0.61, 0.34) in calibration period and an excellent model performance (R2 = 0.79, 0.38; NS = 0.75, 0.43) in validation period for streamflow and sediment concentration respectively. We have selected 20 BMPs to estimate their efficacy in terms of water, sediment, and crop yields. Linear Programming (LP) was used to determine the
Perraton, L; Machotka, Z; Gibbs, C; Mahar, C; Kennedy, K; Grimmer, K
Assisting physiotherapists to implement research evidence into clinical practice is essential to ensure the quality of practice and encourage lifelong learning and professional progression. However, many physiotherapists report barriers to implementing research, and there is little evidence regarding the sustainability of intended evidence-based practice (EBP) behaviours following EBP education programmes. This paper reports on intended and actual long-term EBP behaviours of physiotherapy students who completed an intensive EBP training programme embedded within a post-graduate coursework programme. An intensive 3-week course in quantitative health research methods and EBP was delivered annually from 2007 to 2014 as part of the programme to national and international students. Following the course, students were asked about their intention of using evidence to inform their future clinical practice. An online survey was used to evaluate EBP behaviours of graduates. Of a possible total of 202 students, contact details for 193 students were sourced, and 65 students responded to the survey (34% response rate). At course completion, 174 students (86%) indicated that they intended to use research to guide their clinical decisions at least once a week. At follow-up, most graduates reported frequently using research to inform their clinical practice; indicated by a mean score of 6.5 (±1.9) from a possible range of 0 (not at all) to 10 (all the time). On average, students reported spending 2.2 (±2.2) hours accessing and reading research evidence per week. The most common barriers to implementing evidence were lack of time, limited access to evidence sources and a perceived lack of generalizability of research findings to specific patient groups. Graduates of an intensive EBP training programme embedded within an existing post-graduate physiotherapy programme regularly implemented EBP in clinical practice. Barriers to evidence implementation were time, access to research
Marlenga, Barbara; Pahwa, Punam; Hagel, Louise; Dosman, James; Pickett, William; Brison, Robert J; Crowe, Trever; Koehncke, Niels; Snodgrass, Phyllis; Day, Lesley; Voaklander, Donald
To characterize working hours of adult farm owner-operators and their spouses by season, and to examine associations between working hours and farm safety practices affecting children. We conducted a secondary analysis of cross-sectional survey data collected as part of an existing study of injury and its determinants. Owner-operators reported a median of 60 to 70 hours of farm work per week during warm weather months, with declines in hours over the winter. Spouses reported similar seasonal patterns, although their median reported hours were much lower. Longer farm working hours by owner-operators were marginally associated with increased exposure of teenagers to farm work hazards. Exposures of young children to worksite hazards rose in association with longer farm working hours by spouses. Exposures of children to farm worksite hazards and demands may be consequences of adult long working hours. © 2010 National Rural Health Association.
Bellaloui, Nacer; Bruns, H Arnold; Abbas, Hamed K; Mengistu, Alemu; Fisher, Daniel K; Reddy, Krishna N
Information on the effects of management practices on soybean seed composition is scarce. Therefore, the objective of this research was to investigate the effects of planting date (PD) and seeding rate (SR) on seed composition (protein, oil, fatty acids, and sugars) and seed minerals (B, P, and Fe) in soybean grown in two row-types (RTs) on the Mississippi Delta region of the Midsouth USA. Two field experiments were conducted in 2009 and 2010 on Sharkey clay and Beulah fine sandy loam soil at Stoneville, MS, USA, under irrigated conditions. Soybean were grown in 102 cm single-rows and 25 cm twin-rows in 102 cm centers at SRs of 20, 30, 40, and 50 seeds m(-2). The results showed that in May and June planting, protein, glucose, P, and B concentrations increased with increased SR, but at the highest SRs (40 and 50 seeds m(-2)), the concentrations remained constant or declined. Palmitic, stearic, and linoleic acid concentrations were the least responsive to SR increases. Early planting resulted in higher oil, oleic acid, sucrose, B, and P on both single and twin-rows. Late planting resulted in higher protein and linolenic acid, but lower oleic acid and oil concentrations. The changes in seed constituents could be due to changes in environmental factors (drought and temperature), and nutrient accumulation in seeds and leaves. The increase of stachyose sugar in 2010 may be due to a drier year and high temperature in 2010 compared to 2009; suggesting the possible role of stachyose as an environmental stress compound. Our research demonstrated that PD, SR, and RT altered some seed constituents, but the level of alteration in each year dependent on environmental factors such as drought and temperature. This information benefits growers and breeders for considering agronomic practices to select for soybean seed nutritional qualities under drought and high heat conditions.
Burrell, Anthony R; Elliott, Doug; Hansen, Margaret M
Contemporary information and communicationstechnology (ICT), particularly applications termed "Web2.0", can facilitate practice development and knowledgemanagement for busy clinicians. Just as importantly, theseapplications might also enhance professional socialinteraction and the development of an interprofessionalcommunity of practice that transcends the boundaries ofthe intensive care unit, health service, jurisdiction andnation.We explore the development of Web 2.0 applications inhealth care, and their application to intensive care practicein Australia and New Zealand. The opportunities for usingpodcasts, blogs, wikis and virtual worlds to support cliniciandevelopment and knowledge exchange are clear in theory.However, strategic leadership from the Colleges is neededto fully exploit these technologies and to enable thedevelopment of a strong and sustainable ICU community ofpractice.
Tayyib, Nahla; Coyer, Fiona
This article reports on the development and implementation process used to integrate a care bundle approach (a pressure ulcer [PU] prevention bundle to improve patients' skin integrity in intensive care) and the Ottawa Model of Research Use (OMRU). The PU prevention care bundle demonstrated significant reduction in PU incidence, with the OMRU model providing a consolidated framework for the implementation of bundled evidence in an effective and consistent manner into daily clinical nursing practice.
Bastani, M.; Harter, T.
Intentional recharge practices in irrigated landscapes are promising options to control and remediate groundwater quality degradation with respect to nitrate. To better understand the effect of these practices, a fully 3D transient heterogeneous transport model simulation is developed using MODFLOW and MT3D. The model is developed for a long-term study of nitrate improvements in an alluvial groundwater basin in Eastern San Joaquin Valley, CA. Different scenarios of agricultural recharge strategies including crop type change and winter flood flows are investigated. Transient simulations with high spatio-temporal resolutions are performed. We then consider upscaling strategies that would allow us to simplify the modeling process such that it can be applied at a very large basin-scale (1000s of square kilometers) for scenario analysis. We specifically consider upscaling of time-variant boundary conditions (both internal and external) that have significant influence on calculation cost of the model. We compare monthly transient stresses to upscaled annual and further upscaled average steady-state stresses on nitrate transport in groundwater under recharge scenarios.
Townsend, M.A.; Sleezer, R.O.; Macko, S.A.; ,
Differences in nitrate-N concentrations in,around water in Kansas can be explained by variations in agricultural practices and vadose-zone stratigraphy. In northwestern Kansas, past use of a local stream for tailwater runoff from irrigation and high fertilizer applications for sugar-beet farming resulted in high nitrate-N concentrations (12-60 mg L-1; in both soil and ground water. Nitrogen isotope values from the soil and ground water range from +4 to +8? which is typical for a fertilizer source. In parts of south-central Kansas, the use of crop rotation and the presence of both continuous fine-textured layers and a reducing ground-water chemistry resulted in ground-water nitrate-N values of 10 mg L-1; in both soil and grounwater. Nitrogen isotope values of +3 to +7? indicate a fertilizer source. Crop rotation decreased nitrate-N values in the shallow ground water (9 m). However, deeper ground water showed increasing nitrate-N concentrations as a result of past farming practices.
Specific standards exist for social work practice with service members, military families, and veterans, whether in civilian or military practice settings. Based on these standards, a continuing education certificate for practitioners was designed with companion military social work coursework in the advanced graduate curriculum and field…
Kiyoshi-Teo, Hiroko; Blegen, Mary
Maintaining oral hygiene is a key component of preventing ventilator-associated pneumonia; however, practices are inconsistent. To explore how characteristics of institutional guidelines for oral hygiene influence nurses' oral hygiene practices and perceptions of that practice. Oral hygiene section of a larger survey study on prevention of ventilator-associated pneumonia. Critical care nurses at 8 hospitals in Northern California that had more than 1000 ventilator days in 2009 were recruited to participate in the survey. Twenty-one questions addressed oral hygiene practices and practice perceptions. Descriptive statistics, analysis of variance, and Spearman correlations were used for analyses. A total of 576 critical care nurses (45% response rate) responded to the survey. Three types of institutional oral hygiene guidelines existed: nursing policy, order set, and information bulletin. Nursing policy provided the most detail about the oral hygiene care; however, adherence, awareness, and priority level were higher with order sets (P < .05). The content and method of disseminating these guidelines varied, and nursing practices were affected by these differences. Nurses assessed the oral cavity and used oral swabs more often when those practices were included in institutional guidelines. The content and dissemination method of institutional guidelines on oral hygiene do influence the oral hygiene practices of critical care nurses. Future studies examining how institutional guidelines could best be incorporated into routine workflow are needed. ©2015 American Association of Critical-Care Nurses.
Cooley, H. S.; Riley, W. J.; Torn, M. S.
Regional climate affects the timing of harvest for rain-fed crops. In response to dry conditions, for example, farmers may harvest crops earlier than they do under wet conditions. This removal of vegetation alters the land surface characteristics and may, in turn, affect regional climate conditions. We studied the dynamic relationship between land use practice, i.e. winter wheat harvest, and regional climate by applying a coupled climate (MM5) and land-surface (LSM1) model to the ARM-CART region of the Southern Great Plains. We compared early and late harvest scenarios, with winter wheat harvested on June 5 and July 5, respectively. Winter wheat is grown in a fairly uniform belt that accounts for 20% of the total land area over the domain of the ARM-CART. Results showed that harvest dramatically affects energy, momentum, and water fluxes. Regionally-averaged, 2 m air temperatures were 0.5-1\\deg C warmer in the early- compared to late-harvest case, with peak warming of 5\\deg C centered over the harvested area. Soils in the harvested area were drier and warmer in the top 10 cm. Near-surface soil water-filled pore space was reduced by 7% across the region, with a peak drying of 22% centered over the harvested area. Soils were up to 10\\deg C warmer, with area-averaged warming of ~0.6\\deg C at mid-day two weeks after harvest. Differences between scenarios were greatest during an initial two-week dry period. A subsequent wet period greatly reduced these differences.
Ladics, Gregory S; Cressman, Robert F; Herouet-Guicheney, Corinne; Herman, Rod A; Privalle, Laura; Song, Ping; Ward, Jason M; McClain, Scott
Bioinformatic tools are being increasingly utilized to evaluate the degree of similarity between a novel protein and known allergens within the context of a larger allergy safety assessment process. Importantly, bioinformatics is not a predictive analysis that can determine if a novel protein will ''become" an allergen, but rather a tool to assess whether the protein is a known allergen or is potentially cross-reactive with an existing allergen. Bioinformatic tools are key components of the 2009 CodexAlimentarius Commission's weight-of-evidence approach, which encompasses a variety of experimental approaches for an overall assessment of the allergenic potential of a novel protein. Bioinformatic search comparisons between novel protein sequences, as well as potential novel fusion sequences derived from the genome and transgene, and known allergens are required by all regulatory agencies that assess the safety of genetically modified (GM) products. The objective of this paper is to identify opportunities for consensus in the methods of applying bioinformatics and to outline differences that impact a consistent and reliable allergy safety assessment. The bioinformatic comparison process has some critical features, which are outlined in this paper. One of them is a curated, publicly available and well-managed database with known allergenic sequences. In this paper, the best practices, scientific value, and food safety implications of bioinformatic analyses, as they are applied to GM food crops are discussed. Recommendations for conducting bioinformatic analysis on novel food proteins for potential cross-reactivity to known allergens are also put forth. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Clinical supervision is a process of guided reflective practice and is used in the areas of mental health and palliative care. However, within the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit setting, stressful situations may also arise, with no policies for nurses in regards to participation in clinical supervision. With critical incidents, complex family issues and loss of nursing expertise, clinical supervision could be a potential solution to this dilemma. The aims of the project were to investigate if any hospital policies supported clinical supervision. Specifically, the aims were: (i) to conduct an audit of nurses' knowledge on the topic of clinical supervision, (ii) to investigate if nurses were aware of, or had been involved in, any clinical supervision activities conducted in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit or a Special Care Baby Unit, and (iii) to investigate if records are maintained of any clinical supervision activities held. A three-phase approach was initiated for this project: a baseline audit, implementation of education sessions, and a follow-up audit using the Joanna Briggs Institute Practical Application of Clinical Evidence System and Getting Research into Practice programs. The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Special Care Baby Unit have approximately 180 registered nurses working in the units where the project was conducted. The baseline audit included 37 nurses by convenience sampling and the follow-up audit included nine of these nurses. No policy on clinical supervision has been developed to support nurses in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Special Care Baby Unit. The baseline audit found that nurses described clinical supervision as educational and task orientated, and did not equate clinical supervision with a process that could be also described as "guided reflective practice". Following the education sessions, there was a better understanding of what clinical supervision entailed and the benefits that could lead to improved professional practice
DeBoy, John M; Boulton, Matthew L; Carpenter, David F
The public health, environmental, and agricultural laboratory (PHEAL) workforce is a key component of the public health infrastructure. The national laboratory workforce faces an ongoing challenge of recruitment and retention of workers often related to pay and other compensation issues. To collect information on laboratory salaries and laboratory compensation practices using a national compensation survey targeting the PHEAL workforce. Seventy-three of 109 (67%) PHEAL directors in the 50 states and District of Columbia collectively employ 3723/4830 (77%) PHEAL employees in the United States. A standardized survey was developed and administered in 2010. Compensation data were compiled by job classification, geographic region, laboratory gross operating budget size, laboratory staff size, and laboratory type. Laboratory staff size ranged from 3 to 327 individuals (mean = 74 and median = 51). Median base salaries were lowest in the Southwest and South and highest in the Mountain and Pacific regions. Mean and median laboratory gross operating budgets for all participating PHEALs were $8 609 238 and $5 671 500, respectively. Extra cash compensation, used by 8 of 60 (13.3%) PHEALs, was more likely to go to a scientist-manager or scientist-supervisor. In 2010, a standardized national compensation survey of technical and scientific public health employees working in 73 PHEALs was effective in collecting previously unavailable data about laboratory salaries, laboratory budgets, and payroll practices. Laboratory salaries varied by geographic region and there was an uneven distribution of extra cash compensation among job classifications. The compensation data collected may be useful in characterizing and improving laboratory salary structures and practices to better support workforce recruitment and retention.
Evrard, Olivier; Le Gall, Marion; Tiecher, Tales; Gomes Minella, Jean Paolo; Laceby, J. Patrick; Ayrault, Sophie
Agricultural expansion that occurred in the 1960s in Southern Brazil significantly increased soil erosion and sediment supply to the river networks. To limit the deleterious impacts of soil erosion, conservation practices were progressively implemented in the 1990s, including the direct sowing of crops on a soil densely covered with plant residues, contour farming, the installation of ponds to trap sediment in the landscape and the use of crop rotations. However, there remains a lack of observational data to investigate the impact of these conservation practices on soil erosion and sediment supply. This data is crucial to protect soil resources and maintain the sustainability of food production systems in this region of the world characterized by a rapidly increasing population. Accordingly, sediment sources were investigated in the Guaporé catchment (2,032 km2) representative of the cultivated environments found in this part of the world. In the upper catchment, the landscape is characterized by gentle slopes and deep soils (Ferralsols, Nitisols) corresponding to the edge of the basaltic plateau. Soybean, corn and wheat under direct sowing are the main crops in this area. In contrast, steep and shallow soils (Luvisols, Acrisols, Leptosols) highly connected to the rivers are found in the lower catchment, where tobacco and corn fields are cultivated with conventional ploughing. These soil types were characterized by elemental geochemistry and 87Sr/86Sr ratios. Sediment sources were then modelled using the optimal suite of properties (87Sr/86Sr ratios, K, Ti, Co, As, Ba, and Pb). The results demonstrate that sediment collected at the catchment outlet during two hydrological years (2012-2014) mainly originated from downstream soils (Luvisols, Acrisols, Leptosols; 92±3%), with this proportion remaining stable throughout the monitoring period. This research indicates that conservation practices implemented in the upper catchment are effective and that similar methods
Wang, Jie; Li, Li; Liu, Jianguo; Ti, Bowen
The practice of incorporating post-harvest crop waste is widely used because it maintains soil fertility and avoids environmental pollution from straw burning. However, the practice of straw incorporation may also retain the pesticides that are applied to crop plants, which may pose a potential long term risk to local and regional environments if the applied pesticide is a Persistent, Bioaccumulative, and Toxic (PBT) substance or a Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP). Here we investigate the influence of the "receiving-retention-release" route on the distribution of a POP pesticide (endosulfan) and the associated environmental risk among different environmental compartments. Our study indicates that most endosulfan enters the atmosphere (φ atmosphere = 64.5-72.5%), which is dominated by the indirect route of volatilization from crop plants (φ atmosphere, indirect = 54.7-70.3%). In contrast, soil releases are minor (φ soil = 10.8-20.5%), and are dominated by direct release during application (φ soil, direct = 8.0-18.0%). Under the practice of straw incorporation, the use of endosulfan posed an environmental risk to agricultural soil. In addition, the atmospheric deposition of endosulfan also posed an environmental risk to sediment. The study highlights the significance of the "receiving-retention-release" route by crop plants in determining the fate of POP pesticides associated with straw incorporation; hence complementing the current methodology for assessing the environmental risk of these compounds. Copyright Â© 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Shiying Tian; Mohamed A. Youssef; R. Wayne Skaggs; Devendra Amatya; George M. Chescheir
This paper reports results of a study to test the reliability of the DRAINMOD-FOREST model for predicting water, soil carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) dynamics in intensively managed forests. The study site, two adjacent loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) plantations (referred as D2 and D3), are located in the coastal plain of North Carolina, USA. Controlled drainage (with weir...
Rayner, Kelly; Bradley, Samantha; Johnson, Gemma; Mrozik, Jennifer H.; Appiah, Afua; Nagra, Maninder K.
The engagement of people with learning disabilities in social communication is crucial to the development of relationships with others, a sense of social inclusion and self-worth. Intensive Interaction is an approach that can help carers develop their skills to engage people with severe and profound learning disabilities in personally relevant…
Rousseau, Alain N.; Hallema, Dennis W.; Gumiere, Silvio J.; Savary, Stéphane; Hould Gosselin, Gabriel
Water quality has become a matter of increasing concern over the past four decades as a result of the intensification of agriculture, and more particularly so in Canada where agriculture has evolved into the largest non-point source of surface water pollution. The Canadian WEBs project (Watershed Evaluation of Beneficial Management Practices, BMPs) was initiated in order to determine the efficiency of BMPs in improving the surface water quality of rural catchments, and the economic aspects related to their implementation on the same scale. In this contribution we use the integrated watershed modelling platform GIBSI (Gestion Intégrée des Bassins versants à l'aide d'un Système Informatisé) to evaluate the effects of various BMPs on sediment and nutrient yields and, in close relation to this, the surface water quality for the Beaurivage River catchment (718 km2) in Quebec, eastern Canada. A base scenario of the catchment is developed by calibrating the different models of the GIBSI platform, namely HYDROTEL for hydrology, the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) for soil erosion, the Erosion-Productivity Impact Calculator (EPIC) of the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) for contaminant transport and fate, and QUAL2E for stream water quality. Four BMPs were analysed: (1) vegetated riparian buffer strips, (2) precision slurry application, (3) transition of all cereal and corn fields to grassland (grassland conversion), and (4) no-tillage on corn fields. Simulations suggest that riparian buffer strips and grassland conversion are more effective in terms of phosphorus, nitrogen and sediment load reduction than precision slurry application and no-tillage on corn fields. The results furthermore indicate the need for a more profound understanding of sediment dynamics in streams and on riparian buffer strips.
Miranda-Ackerman, Marco A; Azzaro-Pantel, Catherine
New consumer awareness is shifting industry towards more sustainable practices, creating a virtuous cycle between producers and consumers enabled by eco-labelling. Eco-labelling informs consumers of specific characteristics of products and has been used to market greener products. Eco-labelling in the food industry has yet been mostly focused on promoting organic farming, limiting the scope to the agricultural stage of the supply chain, while carbon labelling informs on the carbon footprint throughout the life cycle of the product. These labelling strategies help value products in the eyes of the consumer. Because of this, decision makers are motivated to adopt more sustainable models. In the food industry, this has led to important environmental impact improvements at the agricultural stage, while most other stages in the Food Supply Chain (FSC) have continued to be designed inefficiently. The objective of this work is to define a framework showing how carbon labelling can be integrated into the design process of the FSC. For this purpose, the concept of Green Supply Chain Network Design (GSCND) focusing on the strategic decision making for location and allocation of resources and production capacity is developed considering operational, financial and environmental (CO 2 emissions) issues along key stages in the product life cycle. A multi-objective optimization strategy implemented by use of a genetic algorithm is applied to a case study on orange juice production. The results show that the consideration of CO 2 emission minimization as an objective function during the GSCND process together with techno-economic criteria produces improved FSC environmental performance compared to both organic and conventional orange juice production. Typical results thus highlight the importance that carbon emissions optimization and labelling may have to improve FSC beyond organic labelling. Finally, CO 2 emission-oriented labelling could be an important tool to improve the
Rao, N. S.; Easton, Z. M.; Lee, D. R.; Steenhuis, T. S.
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
Containerized plant production represents an extremely intensive agricultural practice with large amounts of water and fertilizer application. Hydro-physical characteristics such as water infiltration, texture and structure, particle size distribution affect the quality of the media used in containe...
Harned, Douglas A.
The effects of selected agricultural land-management practices on water quality were assessed in a comparative study of four small basins in the Piedmont province of North Carolina. Agricultural practices, such as tillage and applications of fertilizer and pesticides, are major sources of sediment, nutrients, and pesticides in surface water, and of nutrients and pesticides in ground water. The four study basins included two adjacent row-crop fields, a mixed land-use basin, and a forested basin. One of the row-crop fields (7.4 acres) was farmed by using conservation land-management (CLM) practices, which included strip cropping, contour plowing, field borders, and grassed waterways. The other row-crop field (4.8 acres) was farmed by using standard land-management (SLM) practices, which included continuous cropping, straight-row plowing without regard to land topography, and poorly maintained waterways. The mixed land-use basin (665 acres) was monitored to compare water quality in surface water as SLM practices were converted to CLM practices during the project. The forested basin (44 acres) provided background surface-water hydrologic and chemical-quality conditions. Surface-water flow was reduced by 18 percent by CLM practices compared to surface-water flow from the SLM practices basin. The thickness of the unsaturated zone in the row-crop basins ranged from a few feet to 25 feet. Areas with thick unsaturated zones have a greater capacity to intercept and store nutrients and pesticides than do areas with thinner zones. Sediment concentrations and yields for the SLM practices basin were considerably higher than those for the other basins. The median sediment concentration in surface water for the SLM basin was 3.4 times that of the CLM basin, 8.2 times that of the mixed land-use basin, and 38.4 times that of the forested basin. The total sediment yield for the SLM basin was 2.3 times that observed for the CLM basin, 14.1 times that observed for the mixed land
The growing criticism of intensive agricultural practices that lead to a deterioration of natural resources and a decrease of biodiversity has progressively led to more environmental constraints being put on agricultural activities through an "ecologization" of agricultural policies. The aims of these policies have been to protect environmentally…
Wang, Shi-Ping; Wilkes, Andreas; Wang, Ya-Yun; Bai, Ling
The case study preliminarily compared the CH4 reduction potential and CH4 emission intensity of 7 year-old and 4 year-old grazing yak after early off-take practice based on the 2006 IPCC GHG inventory guidelines and under the premise of equal herbage consumption. Our results showed that the total CH4 emission was greater by about 86.3 kg for 2.1 4-year yaks compared with 7 years old yak during their life assuming that their total herbage consumption was the same, because total herbage consumption for a 7-year yak was equal to that of 2.1 4-year yaks. However, CH4 emission per unit body weight (1.374 kg x kg(-1)) for a 7-year yak (i. e. emission intensity) was higher than that of 2.1 4-year yaks (0.973 kg x kg(-1)) because total body weight of 2.1 4-year yaks was higher by 192 kg than that of a 7-year yak. According to CH4 emission intensity, change of the early off-take practice from 7-year to 4-year yak could reduce 77 kg CH4 if producing 192 kg body weight through 2.1 4-year yaks compared with a 7-year yak, i. e. reduction potential was about 1 600 kg CO2 equivalent under the same consuming forage. Therefore, for grassland-based animal husbandry, early off-take practice for grazing animals had a great reduction potential in the intensity of greenhouse gases (GHGs) emissions per unit output rather than total emissions of GHGs.
Dayrit, Ruben S.
The general objectives of agriculture education in both the elementary and secondary schools in Ponape District are to develop interest in agriculture among students and to provide practical and technical skills in growing crops and raising domestic animals. (Author)
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…
Ford, W. I., III; King, K.; Williams, M.
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
White, Robert D
Meeting the varied lighting needs of infants, caregivers, and families has become more complex as our understanding of visual development and perception and the effect of light on circadian rhythms advances. Optimal lighting strategies are discussed for new unit construction, as well as modifications to consider for existing units. In either case, the key concept is that lighting should be provided for the individual needs of each person, rather than the full-room lighting schemes previously used. Ideas gleaned from nonhospital settings, re-introduction of natural light into the neonatal intensive care unit, and new devices such as light-emitting diodes will dramatically change the lighting and visual environment of future neonatal intensive care units.
Kuper, Marcel; Leduc, Christian; Massuel, Sylvain; Bouarfa, Sami
This essay introduces a collection of articles that explore the future of groundwater-based agriculture in the Mediterranean from an interdisciplinary perspective, in a context of declining water tables due to intensive groundwater use. The imminent crisis that many groundwater economies face due to very rapid and intense global change may have severe irreversible social, economic and environmental consequences, but could also be the opportunity to make a clear break with current agricultural development models and move towards more sustainable agricultural practices. The Mediterranean region is, therefore, an interesting case for the future of intensive groundwater use, as innovative ideas and practices may emerge and inspire similar groundwater-based agricultural systems around the world.
Folberth, Christian; Yang, Hong; Gaiser, Thomas; Liu, Junguo; Wang, Xiuying; Williams, Jimmy; Schulin, Rainer
Much of Africa is among the world’s regions with lowest yields in staple food crops, and climate change is expected to make it more difficult to catch up in crop production in particular in the long run. Various agronomic measures have been proposed for lifting agricultural production in Africa and to adapt it to climate change. Here, we present a projection of potential climate change impacts on maize yields under different intensification options in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) using an agronomic model, GIS-based EPIC (GEPIC). Fallow and nutrient management options taken into account are (a) conventional intensification with high mineral N supply and a bare fallow, (b) moderate mineral N supply and cowpea rotation, and (c) moderate mineral N supply and rotation with a fast growing N fixing tree Sesbania sesban. The simulations suggest that until the 2040s rotation with Sesbania will lead to an increase in yields due to increasing N supply besides improving water infiltration and soils’ water holding capacity. Intensive cultivation with a bare fallow or an herbaceous crop like cowpea in the rotation is predicted to result in lower yields and increased soil erosion during the same time span. However, yields are projected to decrease in all management scenarios towards the end of the century, should temperature increase beyond critical thresholds. The results suggest that the effect of eco-intensification as a sole means of adapting agriculture to climate change is limited in Sub-Saharan Africa. Highly adverse temperatures would rather have to be faced by improved heat tolerant cultivars, while strongly adverse decreases in precipitation would have to be faced by expanding irrigation where feasible. While the evaluation of changes in agro-environmental variables like soil organic carbon, erosion, and soil humidity hints that these are major factors influencing climate change resilience of the field crop, no direct relationship between these factors, crop yields, and
Attributing nitrogen (N) in the environment to emissions from agricultural management practices is difficult because of the complex and inter-related chemical and biological reactions associated with N and its cascading effects across land, air and water. Such analyses are criti...
Lopez, B.; Baran, N.; Bourgine, B.; Ratheau, D.
follow a significant downward trend period (Orléans). In the nineties, a transition period may have occurred with a higher proportion of upward than downward trends (82 % against 7 % respectively) for the 1980-1990 period and a lower proportion of upward than downward trends for the 2000-2007 period (37 % against 51 % respectively). Combined with the analyse of the current groundwater nitrate concentrations, the KR test reveals zones where trends in nitrate concentrations have been significantly raising with high nitrate current mean values (> 50 mg NO3 L-1). On the other hand, some zones show a significant regional downward trend since 1995 and low current nitrate concentrations (< 20 mg NO3 L-1). Causes of trend reversals cannot be determined by the MK and KR statistical trend analyses, but the cross analyse of nitrate and water table level time-series gives a hint of a positive correlation between these two variables. Evolution of nitrate concentrations in superficial aquifers may thus depend on a combined effect of changes in both agricultural practices and evolution of water table levels linked with climatic context. References Aguilar J.B., Orban P., Dassargues A., Brouyère S., (2007) - Identification of groundwater quality trends in a chalk aquifer threatened by intensive agriculture in Belgium. Hydrogeology journal 15: 1615-1627. Broers H.P., van der Grift B., (2004) - Regional monitoring of temporal changes in groundwater quality. Journal of hydrology 296: 192-220. Frans L.M., Helsel D.R. (2005) - Evaluating regional trends in ground water nitrate concentrations of the Columbia Basin Ground Water management Area, Washington. U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2005-5078, 7p. Stuart M.E., Chilton P.J., Kiniiburgh D.G., Cooper D.M., (2007) - Screening for long-term trends in groundwater nitrate monitoring data. Quaterly Journal of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology, 40: 361-376. Funding The study was funded by the Loire-Brittany River Basin
Ran, Youhua; Li, Xin; Jin, Rui; Kang, Jian; Cosh, Michael H.
Monitoring and estimating grid-mean soil moisture is very important for assessing many hydrological, biological, and biogeochemical processes and for validating remotely sensed surface soil moisture products. Temporal stability analysis (TSA) is a valuable tool for identifying a small number of representative sampling points to estimate the grid-mean soil moisture content. This analysis was evaluated and improved using high-quality surface soil moisture data that were acquired by a wireless sensor network in a high-intensity irrigated agricultural landscape in an arid region of northwestern China. The performance of the TSA was limited in areas where the representative error was dominated by random events, such as irrigation events. This shortcoming can be effectively mitigated by using a stratified TSA (STSA) method, proposed in this paper. In addition, the following methods were proposed for rapidly and efficiently identifying representative sampling points when using TSA. (1) Instantaneous measurements can be used to identify representative sampling points to some extent; however, the error resulting from this method is significant when validating remotely sensed soil moisture products. Thus, additional representative sampling points should be considered to reduce this error. (2) The calibration period can be determined from the time span of the full range of the grid-mean soil moisture content during the monitoring period. (3) The representative error is sensitive to the number of calibration sampling points, especially when only a few representative sampling points are used. Multiple sampling points are recommended to reduce data loss and improve the likelihood of representativeness at two scales.
Brendan J. Whittaker
The question of legal constraints to forest practice is currently active again. Two sources of restriction are the historic concern for timber supply and related amenities, and the mandates of the Federal Water Pollution Law. Legislators by and large, both State and Federal, realize the need of the nation for timber and will give due weight to the data presented to...
The objective was to generate and test parents' understanding of values and associated reason statements to encourage effective food parenting practices. This study was cross-sectional. Sixteen parents from different ethnic groups (African American, white, and Hispanic) living with their 3- to 5-yea...
Beltran, Alicia; Hingle, Melanie D.; Knesek, Jessica; O'Connor, Teresia; Baranowski, Janice; Thompson, Debbe; Baranowski, Tom
Objective: Generate and test parents' understanding of values and associated reason statements to encourage effective food parenting practices. Methods: This study was cross-sectional. Sixteen parents from different ethnic groups (African American, white, and Hispanic) living with their 3- to 5-year-old child were recruited. Interested parents…
Paul V. Ellefson; Michael A. Kilgore; James E. Granskog
In 2003, 276 state governmental agencies regulated forestry practices applied to nonfederal forests. Fifty-four percent of these agencies were moderately to extensively involved in such regulation, and 68% engaged in moderate to extensive regulatory coordination with a state's lead forestry agency. The agencies employed an estimates 1,047 full-time equivalents (...
Murphy, David J; Pronovost, Peter J; Lehmann, Christoph U; Gurses, Ayse P; Whitman, Glenn J R; Needham, Dale M; Berenholtz, Sean M
Despite evidence supporting restrictive red blood cell (RBC) transfusion thresholds and the associated clinical practice guidelines, clinical practice has been slow to change in the intensive care unit (ICU). Our aim was to identify barriers to conservative transfusion practice adherence. A mixed-methods study involving observation of prescriber (i.e., physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners) and bedside nurse daily bedside rounds, provider survey, and medical record abstraction was conducted in one cardiac surgical ICU (CSICU) and one surgical ICU (SICU) in an academic hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. Of 52 patient encounters observed during bedside rounds, 38 (73%) involved patients without evidence of active bleeding or cardiac ischemia. Surveys were completed by 52 (93%) of the 56 providers participating in rounds. Prescribers in the CSICU and SICU (87 and 90%, respectively) indicated the ideal pretransfusion hemoglobin (Hb) to be not more than 7 g/dL in nonbleeding and/or nonischemic patients compared to a minority of nurses (8% [p = 0.002] and 42% [p = 0.015], respectively). Prescribers and nurses in both ICUs overestimated the typical pretransfusion Hb in their units (CSICU, p < 0.001; SICU, p = 0.019). During rounds, providers infrequently explicitly discussed Hb monitoring or transfusion thresholds (33%) despite most (60%) reporting significant variation in transfusion thresholds between individual prescribers. Our study identified several provider and system barriers to evidence-based transfusion practices including knowledge differences, overly optimistic estimates of current practice, and heterogeneous transfusion practice in each ICU. Further work is necessary to develop targeted interventions to improve evidence-based RBC transfusion practices. © 2014 AABB.
Webb, Victoria L; Wadden, Thomas A
Using the Guidelines for the Management of Overweight and Obesity in Adults as a framework, this article reviews intensive lifestyle interventions for weight loss. The Guidelines recommend a minimum of 6 months of high-intensity, comprehensive lifestyle intervention, consisting of a reduced-calorie diet, increased physical activity, and behavior therapy. Persons with obesity typically lose approximately 8 kg (approximately 8% of initial weight) with this approach, accompanied by improvements in health and quality of life. To prevent weight regain, the Guidelines recommend a 1-year weight loss maintenance program that includes at least monthly counseling with a trained interventionist. Lifestyle interventions usually are delivered in-person; however, treatment increasingly is being disseminated through community- and commercial-based programs, as well as delivered by telephone, Internet, and smartphone platforms. These latter modalities expand treatment reach but usually produce smaller weight losses than in-person interventions. The review concludes with an examination of challenges in weight management. Copyright © 2017 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Scholte, Johannes B J; van Mook, Walther N K A; Linssen, Catharina F M; van Dessel, Helke A; Bergmans, Dennis C J J; Savelkoul, Paul H M; Roekaerts, Paul M H J
To explore the extent of surveillance culture (SC) implementation underlying motives for obtaining SC and decision making based on the results. A questionnaire was distributed to Heads of Department (HODs) and microbiologists within all intensive care departments in the Netherlands. Response was provided by 75 (79%) of 95 HODs and 38 (64%) of 59 laboratories allied to an intensive care unit (ICU). Surveillance cultures were routinely obtained according to 55 (73%) of 75 HODs and 33 (87%) of 38 microbiologists. Surveillance cultures were obtained in more than 80% of higher-level ICUs and in 58% of lower-level ICUs (P < .05). Surveillance cultures were obtained twice weekly (88%) and sampled from trachea (87%), pharynx (74%), and rectum (68%). Thirty (58%) of 52 HODs obtained SC to optimize individual patient treatment. On suspicion of infection from an unknown source, microorganisms identified by SC were targeted according to 87%. One third of HODs targeted microorganisms identified by SC in the case of an infection not at the location where the SC was obtained. This was significantly more often than microbiologists in case of no infection (P = .02) or infection of unknown origin (P < .05). Surveillance culture implementation is common in Dutch ICUs to optimize individual patients' treatment. Consensus is lacking on how to deal with SC results when the focus of infection is not at the sampled site. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Thompson, Carla J; Podemski, Richard; Brown, H Quincy
The need for institutions of higher education to advance research and scholarly integrity across graduate degree programs involves a strong commitment from each institution to develop a comprehensive approach for promoting responsible conduct of research (RCR). In response to this need, one master's-intensive regional university implemented a three-tier model project (focusing, developing, and evaluating/sustaining) for infusing research integrity principles and practices while promoting RCR. Components of the model and implementation strategies are presented as a case study analysis. Implications of the model for promoting the RCR are projected relative to graduate programs focused on applied research.
Coombs, Maureen; Fulbrook, Paul; Donovan, Sarah; Tester, Rachel; deVries, Kay
With end-of-life (EOL) central to the nursing role in intensive care, few studies have been undertaken to explore EOL care in the context of New Zealand (NZ) intensive care nursing. To investigate NZ intensive care nurses' experiences of, and attitudes towards EOL care. Sequential mixed methods study using cross sectional survey with follow-on focus groups. NZ intensive care nurses (N=465) across four large tertiary intensive care units (ICUs) were contacted to complete a 43-item web-based survey. A follow-on focus group was conducted in each of the sites to explore specific aspects of the survey findings. 203 fully completed surveys were returned (response rate 44%) from the four ICUs. Over half of nurses surveyed (55%, n=111) disagreed that withholding and withdrawing life support treatment were ethically the same. 78% (n=159) of nurses stated that withholding treatment was ethically more acceptable than withdrawing it. Whilst nurses generally supported reducing inspired oxygen to air for ventilated patients at EOL (71%, n=139) this was also an area that demonstrated one of the highest levels of uncertainty (21%, n=41). Just under a quarter of respondents were also uncertain about the use of continued nutritional support, continued passive limb exercises and use of deep sedation during EOL. The 18 nurses who participated in follow-on focus groups detailed the supportive, culturally sensitive, collaborative environment that EOL was conducted in. However diverse opinions and understandings were held on the use of passive limb and use of fluids at EOL. Whilst results from this NZ study broadly align with European studies, uncertainty about specific areas of EOL practices highlight that further guidance for nurses is required. Copyright © 2015 Australian College of Critical Care Nurses Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Cooper, Dominic; Farmery, Keith; Johnson, Martin; Harper, Christine; Clarke, Fiona L; Holton, Phillip; Wilson, Susan; Rayson, Paul; Bence, Hugh
The delivery of safe high quality patient care is a major issue in clinical settings. However, the implementation of evidence-based practice and educational interventions are not always effective at improving performance. A staff-led behavioral management process was implemented in a large single-site acute (secondary and tertiary) hospital in the North of England for 26 weeks. A quasi-experimental, repeated-measures, within-groups design was used. Measurement focused on quality care behaviors (ie, documentation, charting, hand washing). The results demonstrate the efficacy of a staff-led behavioral management approach for improving quality-care practices. Significant behavioral change (F [6, 19] = 5.37, p < 0.01) was observed. Correspondingly, statistically significant (t-test [t] = 3.49, df = 25, p < 0.01) reductions in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) were obtained. Discussion focuses on implementation issues. PMID:18360574
Tomlinson, Patricia S; Thomlinson, Elizabeth; Peden-McAlpine, Cynthia; Kirschbaum, Mark
To explore family caregiving problems in paediatric crisis care and methods that could be applied to move the abstraction of family care to development of specific family interventions. Family centred care has been accepted as the ideal philosophy for holistic health care of children, but methods for its implementation are not well established. In paediatric health crises, family care requires special sensitivity to family needs and a type of complex nursing care for which many practitioners are not sufficiently prepared. Developing family sensitive models of intervention and finding a strategy for transfer of this knowledge to clinical practice is an important challenge facing family nursing today. Social learning theory provides a rich background to explore these issues. Specific techniques of role modelling and reflective practice are suggested as effective approaches to teach family sensitive care in clinical settings where families are part of the care environment.
developed in stable environments are valid in highly disturbed environments such as agro-ecosystems. The approach developed here to classify arable weeds according to the breadth of their ecological niche is robust and applicable to a wide range of organisms. It is also sensitive to disturbance regime and we show here that recent changes in agricultural practices, i.e. increased levels of disturbance have favoured the most generalist species, hence leading to biotic homogenisation in arable landscapes. PMID:20809982
Malekzadeh, Javad; Mazluom, Seyed Reza; Etezadi, Toktam; Tasseri, Alireza
Introduction: For maintaining the continuity of care and improving the quality of care, effective inter-shift information communication is necessary. Any handover error can endanger patient safety. Despite the importance of shift handover, there is no standard handover protocol in our healthcare settings. Methods: In this one-group pretest-posttest quasi-experimental study conducted in spring and summer of 2011, we recruited a convenience sample of 56 ICU nurses. The Nurses’ Safe Practice Evaluation Checklist was used for data collection. The Content Validity Index and the inter-rater correlation coefficient of the checklist was 0.92 and 89, respectively. We employed the SPSS 11.5 software and the Mc Nemar and paired-samples t test for data analysis. Results: Study findings revealed that nurses’ mean score on the Safe Practice Evaluation Checklist increased significantly from 11.6 (2.7) to 17.0 (1.8) (P < 0.001). Conclusion: using a standard handover protocol for communicating patient’s needs and information improves nurses’ safe practice in the area of basic nursing care. PMID:25276725
Pazhur, R J; Kutter, B; Georgieff, M; Schraag, S
Portable digital assistants (PDAs) may be of value to the anaesthesiologist as development in medical care is moving towards "bedside computing". Many different portable computers are currently available and it is now possible for the physician to carry a mobile computer with him all the time. It is data base, reference book, patient tracking help, date planner, computer, book, magazine, calculator and much more in one mobile device. With the help of a PDA, information that is required for our work may be available at all times and everywhere at the point of care within seconds. In this overview the possibilities for the use of PDAs in anaesthesia and intensive care medicine are discussed. Developments in other countries, possibilities in use but also problems such as data security and network technology are evaluated.
Zhalnina, Kateryna; de Quadros, Patricia D.; Gano, Kelsey A.; Davis-Richardson, Austin; Fagen, Jennie R.; Brown, Christopher T.; Giongo, Adriana; Drew, Jennifer C.; Sayavedra-Soto, Luis A.; Arp, Dan J.; Camargo, Flavio A. O.; Daroub, Samira H.; Clark, Ian M.; McGrath, Steve P.; Hirsch, Penny R.; Triplett, Eric W.
Agricultural land management, such as fertilization, liming, and tillage affects soil properties, including pH, organic matter content, nitrification rates, and the microbial community. Three different study sites were used to identify microorganisms that correlate with agricultural land use and to determine which factors regulate the relative abundance of the microbial signatures of the agricultural land-use. The three sites included in this study are the Broadbalk Experiment at Rothamsted Research, UK, the Everglades Agricultural Area, Florida, USA, and the Kellogg Biological Station, Michigan, USA. The effects of agricultural management on the abundance and diversity of bacteria and archaea were determined using high throughput, barcoded 16S rRNA sequencing. In addition, the relative abundance of these organisms was correlated with soil features. Two groups of microorganisms involved in nitrogen cycle were highly correlated with land use at all three sites. The ammonia oxidizing-archaea, dominated by Ca. Nitrososphaera, were positively correlated with agriculture while a ubiquitous group of soil bacteria closely related to the diazotrophic symbiont, Bradyrhizobium, was negatively correlated with agricultural management. Analysis of successional plots showed that the abundance of ammonia oxidizing-archaea declined and the abundance of bradyrhizobia increased with time away from agriculture. This observation suggests that the effect of agriculture on the relative abundance of these genera is reversible. Soil pH and NH3 concentrations were positively correlated with archaeal abundance but negatively correlated with the abundance of Bradyrhizobium. The high correlations of Ca. Nitrososphaera and Bradyrhizobium abundances with agricultural management at three long-term experiments with different edaphoclimatic conditions allowed us to suggest these two genera as signature microorganisms for agricultural land use. PMID:23641242
Mghirbi, Oussama; Bord, Jean-Paul; Le Grusse, Philippe; Mandart, Elisabeth; Fabre, Jacques
Faced with health, environmental, and socio-economic issues related to the heavy use of pesticides, diffuse phytosanitary pollution becomes a major concern shared by all the field actors. These actors, namely the farmers and territorial managers, have expressed the need to implement decision support tools for the territorial management of diffuse pollution resulting from the plant protection practices and their impacts. To meet these steadily increasing requests, a cartographic analysis approach was implemented based on GIS which allows the spatialization of the diffuse pollution impacts related to plant protection practices on the Etang de l'Or catchment area in the South of France. Risk mapping represents a support-decision tool that enables the different field actors to identify and locate vulnerable areas, so as to determine action plans and agri-environmental measures depending on the context of the natural environment. This work shows that mapping is helpful for managing risks related to the use of pesticides in agriculture by employing indicators of pressure (TFI) and risk on the applicator's health (IRSA) and on the environment (IRTE). These indicators were designed to assess the impact of plant protection practices at various spatial scales (field, farm, etc.). The cartographic analysis of risks related to plant protection practices shows that diffuse pollution is unequally located in the North (known for its abundant garrigues and vineyards) and in the South of the Etang de l'Or catchment area (the Mauguio-Lunel agricultural plain known for its diversified cropping systems). This spatial inequity is essentially related to land use and agricultural production system. Indeed, the agricultural lands cover about 60% of the total catchment area. Consequently, this cartographic analysis helps the territorial actors with the implementation of strategies for managing risks of diffuse pollution related to pesticides use in agriculture, based on environmental and
Lindsay K. Campbell
How and why is urban agriculture taken up into local food policies and sustainability plans? This paper uses a case study of urban agriculture policymaking in New York City from 2007 to 2011 to examine the power-laden operation of urban environmental governance. It explores several 'faces of power,' including overt authority, institutionalized 'rules of...
Drainage is needed to sustain agricultural production to meet the demands of a growing global population, but it also transports nutrients from fields to surface water bodies. The State of Ohio is facing the tremendous challenge of maintaining agricultural production while protecting the environment...
Birner, Regina; Davis, Kristin; Pender, John; Nkonya, Ephraim; Anandajayasekeram, Ponniah; Ekboir, Javier; Mbabu, Adiel; Spielman, David J.; Horna, Daniela; Benin, Samuel; Cohen, Marc
The article provides a conceptual framework and discusses research methods for analyzing pluralistic agricultural advisory services. The framework can also assist policy-makers in identifying reform options. It addresses the following question: Which forms of providing and financing agricultural advisory services work best in which situation? The…
Manaouil, C; Montpellier, D; Sannier, O; Defouilloy, C; Radji, M; Jardé, O; Dupont, H
Ambulatory anaesthesia is an anesthesia allowing the return of the patient home the same day. Even if the ambulatory hospitalization can, in theory, be applied to a prisoner as to every patient, caution is essential in such approach. Every anaesthetist reanimator doctor practicing in public hospitals may give care to patient prisoners while he is far from dominating all features of the prison world and while he must put down his therapeutic indications. The ambulatory anaesthesia in prison environment does not guarantee full security for the patient. Procedures could be set up between hospital complexes, caretakers practicing within penal middle (Unit of Consultation and Ambulatory Care [UCAC]) the prison service and hospital, the prefecture, to identify possible ambulatory interventions for a patient prisoner and to set up all guarantees of patient follow-up care in his return in prison environment. The development of interregional secure hospital units (ISHU) within teaching hospitals, allows an easier realization of interventions to the prisoners, but exists only in seven teaching hospitals in France. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.
Karam, O; Demaret, P; Duhamel, A; Shefler, A; Spinella, P C; Tucci, M; Leteurtre, S; Stanworth, S J
Plasma transfusions are a frequent treatment worldwide, but many studies have reported a wide variation in the indications to transfuse. Recently, an international paediatric study also showed wide variation in frequency in the use of plasma transfusions: 25% of the centres transfused plasma to >5% of their patients, whereas another 25% transfused plasma to <1% of their patients. The objective of this study was to explore the factors associated with different plasma transfusion practices in these centres. Online survey sent to the local investigators of the 101 participating centres, in February 2016. Four areas were explored: beliefs regarding plasma transfusion, patients' case-mix in each unit, unit's characteristics, and local blood product transfusion policies and processes. The response rate was 82% (83/101). 43% of the respondents believed that plasma transfusions can arrest bleeding, whereas 27% believe that plasma transfusion can prevent bleeding. Centres with the highest plasma transfusion rate were more likely to think that hypovolaemia and mildly abnormal coagulation tests are appropriate indications for plasma transfusions (P = 0·02 and P = 0·04, respectively). Case-mix, centre characteristics or local transfusion services were not identified as significant relevant factors. Factors influencing plasma transfusion practices reflect beliefs about indications and the efficacy of transfusion in the prevention and management of bleeding as well as effects on coagulation tests. Educational and other initiatives to target these beliefs should be the focus of research. © 2017 International Society of Blood Transfusion.
Castro, Ricardo; Nin, Nicolas; Ríos, Fernando; Alegría, Leyla; Estenssoro, Elisa; Murias, Gastón; Friedman, Gilberto; Jibaja, Manuel; Ospina-Tascon, Gustavo; Hurtado, Javier; Marín, María Del Carmen; Machado, Flavia R; Cavalcanti, Alexandre Biasi; Dubin, Arnaldo; Azevedo, Luciano; Cecconi, Maurizio; Bakker, Jan; Hernandez, Glenn
Intensive care medicine is a relatively young discipline that has rapidly grown into a full-fledged medical subspecialty. Intensivists are responsible for managing an ever-increasing number of patients with complex, life-threatening diseases. Several factors may influence their performance, including age, training, experience, workload, and socioeconomic context. The aim of this study was to examine individual- and work-related aspects of the Latin American intensivist workforce, mainly with academic appointments, which might influence the quality of care provided. In consequence, we conducted a cross-sectional study of intensivists at public and private academic and nonacademic Latin American intensive care units (ICUs) through a web-based electronic survey submitted by email. Questions about personal aspects, work-related topics, and general clinical workflow were incorporated. Our study comprised 735 survey respondents (53% return rate) with the following country-specific breakdown: Brazil (29%); Argentina (19%); Chile (17%); Uruguay (12%); Ecuador (9%); Mexico (7%); Colombia (5%); and Bolivia, Peru, Guatemala, and Paraguay combined (2%). Latin American intensivists were predominantly male (68%) young adults (median age, 40 [IQR, 35-48] years) with a median clinical ICU experience of 10 (IQR, 5-20) years. The median weekly workload was 60 (IQR, 47-70) h. ICU formal training was between 2 and 4 years. Only 63% of academic ICUs performed multidisciplinary rounds. Most intensivists (85%) reported adequate conditions to manage patients with septic shock in their units. Unsatisfactory conditions were attributed to insufficient technology (11%), laboratory support (5%), imaging resources (5%), and drug shortages (5%). Seventy percent of intensivists participated in research, and 54% read scientific studies regularly, whereas 32% read no more than one scientific study per month. Research grants and pharmaceutical sponsorship are unusual funding sources in Latin
Carmona-Guirado, A J; Escaño-Cardona, V; García-Cañedo, F J
39 year old woman, pregnant for 31+5 weeks, who came to our intensive care unit (ICU) referred from the emergency department of the hospital, having swollen ankles, headache and fatigue at moderate effort. We proceeded to take blood pressure (158/96 mmHg) and assess lower limb edema. The fetal heart rate monitoring was normal. Knowledgeable and user of healthy guidelines during her pregnancy, she did not follow any treatment. Single mother, she worried about her fetus (achieved through in vitro fertilization), her mother offered to help for any mishap. We developed an Individualized Care Plan. For data collection we used: Rating 14 Virginia Henderson Needs and diagnostic taxonomy NANDA, NOC, NIC. Nursing diagnoses of "fluid volume excess" and "risk of impaired maternal-fetal dyad" were detected, as well as potential complications such as eclampsia and fetal prematurity. Our overall objectives (NOC) were to integrate the woman in the process she faced and that she knew how to recognize the risk factors inherent in her illness. Nursing interventions (NIC) contemplated the awareness and treatment of her illness and the creation of new healthy habits. The work of nursing Maternal ICU allowed women to help maintain maximum maternal and fetal well-being by satisfying any of her needs. Mishandling of the situation leads into a framework of high morbidity and mortality in our units. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier España, S.L.U. y SEEIUC. All rights reserved.
Harmany, Zachary T; Marcia, Roummel F; Willett, Rebecca M
Observations in many applications consist of counts of discrete events, such as photons hitting a detector, which cannot be effectively modeled using an additive bounded or Gaussian noise model, and instead require a Poisson noise model. As a result, accurate reconstruction of a spatially or temporally distributed phenomenon (f*) from Poisson data (y) cannot be effectively accomplished by minimizing a conventional penalized least-squares objective function. The problem addressed in this paper is the estimation of f* from y in an inverse problem setting, where the number of unknowns may potentially be larger than the number of observations and f* admits sparse approximation. The optimization formulation considered in this paper uses a penalized negative Poisson log-likelihood objective function with nonnegativity constraints (since Poisson intensities are naturally nonnegative). In particular, the proposed approach incorporates key ideas of using separable quadratic approximations to the objective function at each iteration and penalization terms related to l1 norms of coefficient vectors, total variation seminorms, and partition-based multiscale estimation methods.
Boore, David; Kishida, Tadahiro
Various measures using the two horizontal components of recorded ground motions have been used in a number of studies that derive ground‐motion prediction equations and construct maps of shaking intensity. We update relations between a number of these measures, including those in Boore et al. (2006) and Boore (2010), using the large and carefully constructed global database of ground motions from crustal earthquakes in active tectonic regions developed as part of the Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center–Next Generation Attenuation‐West2 project. The ratios from the expanded datasets generally agree to within a few percent of the previously published ratios. We also provide some ratios that were not considered before, some of which will be useful in applications such as constructing ShakeMaps. Finally, we compare two important ratios with those from a large central and eastern North American database and from many records from subduction earthquakes in Japan and Taiwan. In general, the ratios from these regions are within several percent of those from crustal earthquakes in active tectonic regions.
Pressure-related deep tissue injury (DTI) is a severe form of pressure ulcer that initiates in compressed muscle tissues under bony prominences, and progresses superficially towards the skin. Patients with impaired motosensory capacities are at high risk of developing DTI. There is a critical medical need for developing risk assessment tools for DTI. A new anatomical index, the Compression Intensity Index: CII=(BW/Rt);[1/2], which depends on the body weight (BW), radius of curvature of the ischial tuberosities (R) and thickness of the underlying gluteus muscles (t), is suggested for approximating the loading intensity in muscle tissue during sitting in permanent wheelchair users, as part of a clinically-oriented risk assessment for DTI. Preliminary CII data were calculated for 6 healthy and 4 paraplegic subjects following MRI scans, and data were compared between the groups and with respect to a gold standard, being a previously developed subject-specific MRI-finite-element (MRI-FE) method of calculating muscle tissue stresses (Linder-Ganz et al., J. Biomech. 2007). Marked differences between the R and t parameters of the two groups caused the CII values of the paraplegics to be approximately 1.6-fold higher than for the healthy (p<0.001), thereby indicating on the sensitivity of this parameter to the pathoanatomical changes that occur in the buttocks with paraplegia. Data of CII correlated reasonably with the gold standard calculations of MRI-FE muscle stresses (correlation coefficient 0.65). Since CII measurements do not require highly-specialized biomechanical numerical analyses such as MRI-FE, CII has the potential to serve as a practical, quick, and cost-effective approximation of the loading intensity in muscles of wheelchair-bound or bedridden patients. Hence, CII measurements can be integrated into DTI-risk-assessment tools, the need of which is now being discussed intensively in the American and European Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel meetings.
Diek Van Mansvelt, J
This work seeks to demonstrate how different types of organic agriculture can meet the need for renewable and sustainable agriculture, rural development, and management of the land and water resources. An obstacle to the spread of organic agriculture is the widespread perception that without intensive factors of production, demographic growth will necessarily outstrip the available food resources. Calculation of economic costs and benefits at present carries greater weight in planning than do soil erosion, deforestation, extinction of species, disappearance of habitats, and similar environmental damage. The different types of organic agriculture do not follow rigid rules and are not defined solely by the nonuse of nitrogenous fertilizers and pesticides. One of the main principles or organic agriculture is to respect local soil and climatic conditions. Self-sufficiency regarding external factors of production and an emphasis on recycling and optimal use of natural resources were concept ahead of their time when they initially were introduced in the 1920s. The specialization which restructured agriculture over the past century has seriously damaged the system of mixed agriculture and the chain of food production. The solution will be to seek for each region an appropriate balance linking animals and agricultural production in an organic process. The objective of organic agriculture, also known as autonomous ecosystem management, is to preserve as far as possible the balance between needs for food and fiber on the 1 hand and the potential of local ecosystems on the other. General principles of organic agriculture include mixed exploitation in which both plants and animals have specific functions in the context of their local soil and climatic characteristics. Different types of crop rotation are practiced to optimize mutual interactions between crops, and the varied organic cycles are also optimized within the framework of anorganic management in accord with nature
Frank, Steven J; Cox, James D; Gillin, Michael; Mohan, Radhe; Garden, Adam S; Rosenthal, David I; Gunn, G Brandon; Weber, Randal S; Kies, Merrill S; Lewin, Jan S; Munsell, Mark F; Palmer, Matthew B; Sahoo, Narayan; Zhang, Xiaodong; Liu, Wei; Zhu, X Ronald
We report the first clinical experience and toxicity of multifield optimization (MFO) intensity modulated proton therapy (IMPT) for patients with head and neck tumors. Fifteen consecutive patients with head and neck cancer underwent MFO-IMPT with active scanning beam proton therapy. Patients with squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) had comprehensive treatment extending from the base of the skull to the clavicle. The doses for chemoradiation therapy and radiation therapy alone were 70 Gy and 66 Gy, respectively. The robustness of each treatment plan was also analyzed to evaluate sensitivity to uncertainties associated with variations in patient setup and the effect of uncertainties with proton beam range in patients. Proton beam energies during treatment ranged from 72.5 to 221.8 MeV. Spot sizes varied depending on the beam energy and depth of the target, and the scanning nozzle delivered the spot scanning treatment "spot by spot" and "layer by layer." Ten patients presented with SCC and 5 with adenoid cystic carcinoma. All 15 patients were able to complete treatment with MFO-IMPT, with no need for treatment breaks and no hospitalizations. There were no treatment-related deaths, and with a median follow-up time of 28 months (range, 20-35 months), the overall clinical complete response rate was 93.3% (95% confidence interval, 68.1%-99.8%). Xerostomia occurred in all 15 patients as follows: grade 1 in 10 patients, grade 2 in 4 patients, and grade 3 in 1 patient. Mucositis within the planning target volumes was seen during the treatment of all patients: grade 1 in 1 patient, grade 2 in 8 patients, and grade 3 in 6 patients. No patient experienced grade 2 or higher anterior oral mucositis. To our knowledge, this is the first clinical report of MFO-IMPT for head and neck tumors. Early clinical outcomes are encouraging and warrant further investigation of proton therapy in prospective clinical trials. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Miles, Elizabeth A; Clark, Catharine H; Urbano, M Teresa Guerrero; Bidmead, Margaret; Dearnaley, David P; Harrington, Kevin J; A'Hern, Roger; Nutting, Christopher M
Intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) at the Royal Marsden Hospital London was introduced in July 2001. Treatment delivery was dynamic using a single-phase technique. Concerns were raised regarding increased clinical workload due to introduction of new technology. The potential increased use of resources was assessed. IMRT patient selection was within guidelines of clinical trials and included patients undergoing prostate plus pelvic lymph node (PPN) irradiation and head and neck cancer (HNC) treatment. Patient planning, quality assurance and treatment times were collected for an initial IMRT patient group. A comparative group of patients with advanced HNC undergoing two- or three-phase conventional radiotherapy, requiring matched photon and electron fields, were also timed. The median overall total planning time for IMRT was greater for HNC patients compared to the PPN cohort. For HNC the overall IMRT planning time was significantly longer than for conventional. The median treatment time for conventional two- or three-phase HNC treatments, encompassing similar volumes to those treated with IMRT, was greater than that for the IMRT HNC patient cohort. A reduction in radiographer man hours per patient of 4.8h was recorded whereas physics time was increased by 4.9h per patient. IMRT currently increases overall planning time. Additional clinician input is required for target volume localisation. Physics time is increased, a significant component of this being patient specific QA. Radiographer time is decreased. For HNC a single phase IMRT treatment has proven to be more efficient than a multiple phase conventional treatment. IMRT has been integrated smoothly and efficiently into the existing treatment working day. This preliminary study suggests that IMRT could be a routine treatment with efficient use of current radiotherapy resources.
Uribe, Natalia; corzo, Gerald; Solomatine, Dimitri
The flood events present during the last years in different basins of the Colombian territory have raised questions on the sensitivity of the regions and if this regions have common features. From previous studies it seems important features in the sensitivity of the flood process were: land cover change, precipitation anomalies and these related to impacts of agriculture management and water management deficiencies, among others. A significant government investment in the outreach activities for adopting and promoting the Colombia National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) is being carried out in different sectors and regions, having as a priority the agriculture sector. However, more information is still needed in the local environment in order to assess were the regions have this sensitivity. Also the continuous change in one region with seasonal agricultural practices have been pointed out as a critical information for optimal sustainable development. This combined spatio-temporal dynamics of crops cycle in relation to climate change (or variations) has an important impact on flooding events at basin areas. This research will develop on the assessment and optimization of the aggregated impact of flood events due to determinate the spatio-temporal dynamic of changes in agricultural management practices. A number of common best agricultural practices have been identified to explore their effect in a spatial hydrological model that will evaluate overall changes. The optimization process consists on the evaluation of best performance in the agricultural production, without having to change crops activities or move to other regions. To achieve this objectives a deep analysis of different models combined with current and future climate scenarios have been planned. An algorithm have been formulated to cover the parametric updates such that the optimal temporal identification will be evaluated in different region on the case study area. Different hydroinformatics
Alaoui, Abdallah; Schwilch, Gudrun; Barão, Lúcia; Basch, Gottlieb; Sukkel, Wijnand; Lemesle, Julie; Ferreira, Carla; Garcia-Orenes, Fuensanta; Morugan, Alicia; Mataix, Jorge; Kosmas, Costas; Glavan, Matjaž; Tóth, Brigitta; Petrutza Gate, Olga; Lipiec, Jerzy; Reintam, Endla; Xu, Minggang; Di, Jiaying; Fan, Hongzhu; Geissen, Violette
Agricultural soils are under a wide variety of pressures, including from increasing global demand for food associated with population growth, changing diets, land degradation, and associated productivity reductions potentially exacerbated by climate change. To manage the use of agricultural soils well, decision-makers need science-based, easily applicable, and cost-effective tools for assessing soil quality and soil functions. Since a practical assessment of soil quality requires the integrated consideration of key soil properties and their variations in space and time, providing such tools remains a challenging task. This study aims to assess the impact of innovative agricultural management practices on soil quality in 14 study sites across Europe (10) and China (4), covering the major pedo-climatic zones. The study is part of the European H2020 project iSQAPER, which involves 25 partners across Europe and China and is coordinated by Wageningen University, The Netherlands. iSQAPER is aimed at interactive soil quality assessment in Europe and China for agricultural productivity and environmental resilience. The study began with a thorough literature analysis to inform the selection of indicators for the assessment of soil structure and soil functions. A manual was then developed in order to standardize and facilitate the task of inventorying soil quality and management practices at the case study sites. The manual provides clear and precise instructions on how to assess the 11 selected soil quality indicators based on a visual soil assessment methodology. A newly developed infiltrometer was used to easily assess the soil infiltration capacity in the field and investigate hydrodynamic flow processes. Based on consistent calibration, the infiltrometer enables reliable prediction of key soil hydraulic properties. The main aim of this inventory is to link agricultural management practices to the soil quality status at the case study sites, and to identify innovative
Le Gall, Arthur; Follin, Arnaud; Cholley, Bernard; Mantz, Jean; Aissaoui, Nadia; Pirracchio, Romain
The use of veno-arterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (VA-ECMO) as a salvage therapy in cardiogenic shock is becoming of current practice. While VA-ECMO is potentially a life-saving technique, results are sometimes mitigated, emphasising the need for selecting the right indication in the right patient. This relies upon a clear definition of the individual therapeutic project, including the potential for recovery as well as the possible complications associated with VA-ECMO. To maximise the benefits of VA-ECMO, the basics of extracorporeal circulation should be perfectly understood since VA-ECMO can sometimes be detrimental. Hence, to be successful, VA-ECMO should be used by teams with sufficient experience and initiated after a thorough multidisciplinary discussion considering patient's medical history, pathology as well the anticipated evolution of the disease. Copyright © 2018 Société française d'anesthésie et de réanimation (Sfar). Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.
Frank, Steven J., E-mail: email@example.com; Cox, James D.; Gillin, Michael
Background: We report the first clinical experience and toxicity of multifield optimization (MFO) intensity modulated proton therapy (IMPT) for patients with head and neck tumors. Methods and Materials: Fifteen consecutive patients with head and neck cancer underwent MFO-IMPT with active scanning beam proton therapy. Patients with squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) had comprehensive treatment extending from the base of the skull to the clavicle. The doses for chemoradiation therapy and radiation therapy alone were 70 Gy and 66 Gy, respectively. The robustness of each treatment plan was also analyzed to evaluate sensitivity to uncertainties associated with variations in patient setup and the effectmore » of uncertainties with proton beam range in patients. Proton beam energies during treatment ranged from 72.5 to 221.8 MeV. Spot sizes varied depending on the beam energy and depth of the target, and the scanning nozzle delivered the spot scanning treatment “spot by spot” and “layer by layer.” Results: Ten patients presented with SCC and 5 with adenoid cystic carcinoma. All 15 patients were able to complete treatment with MFO-IMPT, with no need for treatment breaks and no hospitalizations. There were no treatment-related deaths, and with a median follow-up time of 28 months (range, 20-35 months), the overall clinical complete response rate was 93.3% (95% confidence interval, 68.1%-99.8%). Xerostomia occurred in all 15 patients as follows: grade 1 in 10 patients, grade 2 in 4 patients, and grade 3 in 1 patient. Mucositis within the planning target volumes was seen during the treatment of all patients: grade 1 in 1 patient, grade 2 in 8 patients, and grade 3 in 6 patients. No patient experienced grade 2 or higher anterior oral mucositis. Conclusions: To our knowledge, this is the first clinical report of MFO-IMPT for head and neck tumors. Early clinical outcomes are encouraging and warrant further investigation of proton therapy in prospective clinical trials.« less
Agricultural production responds to economic, social, environmental, and technological drivers operating both internal and external to the production system. These drivers influence producers’ decision making processes, and act to shape the individual production systems through modification of produ...
D.C. Dey; E.S. Gardiner; J.M. Kabrick; J.A. Stanturf; D.F. Jacobs
Establishing trees in agricultural bottomlands is challenging because of intense competition, flooding and herbivory. A summary is presented of new practices and management systems for regenerating trees in former agricultural fields in the eastern USA. Innovations have come from improvements in planting stock and new silvicultural systems that restore ecological...
Daniel C. Dey; Emile S. Gardiner; John M. Kabrick; John A. Stanturf; Douglass F. Jacobs
Establishing trees in agricultural bottomlands is challenging because of intense competition, flooding and herbivory. A summary is presented of new practices and management systems for regenerating trees in former agricultural fields in the eastern USA. Innovations have come from improvements in planting stock and new silvicultural systems that restore ecological...
Garcia, V.; Cooter, E. J.; Hayes, B.; Murphy, M. S.; Bash, J. O.
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
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…
Thomas, Y. B.
Smallholder farmers in Burkina Faso, which are already bearing the brunt of climate vagaries, are among the most exposed to the risks associated to climate change. Supporting these farmers in adoption of climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices would help to increase farm productivity and incomes, improve their resilience to climate risks, and mitigate climate change by reducing GHG emissions. CSA is neither a new agricultural system nor a set of practice, but is a new approach, a way to guide the needed changes of agricultural systems, given the necessity to jointly address food security and climate change. Integrating statistics and visualization analysis, this paper identifies and analyzes the key barriers to farmers' effective adoption of CSA practices in Dano and Ouahigouya areas, Burkina Faso. The data used in this study were collected, in May 2016, from 147 households in the two different agro-ecological zones; these data were supplemented by information from focus group discussion (FGD), interview with institutions, and direct observation. It come out from this study that a better adoption of CSA practices requires a strong understanding of barriers and mechanisms (appropriate policies, strategies and actions) that may facilitate these practices by all actors involved in the diffusion, transfer and implementation process. The study revealed that farmers' adoption was influenced by several factors. The inaccessibility of inputs, credit constraints, water shortage, uncertainty in market condition, and climate risk appeared to be among factors that hindered farmers' ability and willingness to adopt CSA practices. Therefore mechanisms (such as index based crop insurance and property and procedural rights frameworks) that protect farmers from these hazards and shocks could encourage them (especially, risk-averse farmers) to take on more risky and more technologies that have high potential to maximize their profit.
Koerkle, E.H.; Fishel, D.K.; Brown, M.J.; Kostelnik, K.M.
Water quality in the headwaters of the Little Conestoga Creek, Lancaster County, Pa., was investigated from April 1986 through September 1989 to determine possible effects of agricultural nutrient management on water quality. Nutrient management, an agricultural Best-Management Practice, was promoted in the 5.8-square-mile watershed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Clean Water Program. Nonpoint-source- agricultural contamination was evident in surface water and ground water in the watershed; the greatest contamination was in areas underlain by carbonate rock and with intensive row-crop and animal production. Initial implementation of nutrient management covered about 30 percent of applicable land and was concentrated in the Nutrient-Management Subbasin. By 1989, nutrient management covered about 45 percent of the entire Small Watershed, about 85 percent of the Nutrient- Management Subbasin, and less than 10 percent of the Nonnutrient-Management Subbasin. The number of farms implementing nutrient management increased from 14 in 1986 to 25 by 1989. Nutrient applications to cropland in the Nutrient- Management Subbasin decreased by an average of 35 percent after implementation. Comparison of base- flow surface-water quality from before and after implementation suggests that nutrient management was effective in slowing or reversing increases in concentrations of dissolved nitrate plus nitrite in the Nutrient-Management Subbasin. Although not statistically significant, the Mann-Whitney step-trend coefficient for the Nutrient-Management Subbasin was 0.8 milligram per liter, whereas trend coefficients for the Nonnutrient-Management Subbasin and the Small Watershed were 0.4 and 1.4 milligrams per liter, respectively, for the period of study. Analysis of covariance comparison of concurrent concentrations from the two sub- basins showed a significant decrease in concen- trations from the Nutrient-Management Subbasin compared to the Nonnutrient-Management Subbasin
Gilder, Eileen; Parke, Rachael L; Jull, Andrew
Despite the evidence and available guidelines about endotracheal suction (ETS), a discrepancy between published guidelines and clinical practice persists. To date, ETS practice in the adult intensive care unit (ICU) population across New Zealand and Australia has not been described. To describe ICU nurses' ETS practice in New Zealand and Australia including the triggers for performing endotracheal suction. A single day, prospective observational, binational, multicentre point prevalence study in New Zealand and Australian ICUs. All adult patients admitted at 10:00 on the study day were included. In addition to patient demographic data, we assessed triggers for ETS, suction canister pressures, use of preoxygenation, measures of oxygenation, and ETS at extubation. There were 682 patients in the ICUs on the study day, and 230 were included in the study. Three of 230 patients were excluded for missing data. A total of 1891 ETS events were performed on 227 patients during the study day, a mean of eight interventions per patient. The main triggers reported were audible (n = 385, 63%) and visible (n = 239, 39%) secretions. Less frequent triggers included following auscultation (n = 142, 23%), reduced oxygen saturations (n = 140, 22%), and ventilator waveforms (n = 53, 9%). Mean suction canister pressure was -337 mmHg (standard deviation = 189), 67% of patients received preoxygenation (n = 413), and ETS at extubation was performed by 84% of nurses. Some practices were inconsistent with international guidelines, in particular concerning patient assessment for ETS and suction canister pressure. Copyright © 2018 Australian College of Critical Care Nurses Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Everhart, Julie M.; Alber-Morgan, Sheila R.; Park, Ju Hee
This study investigated the effects of computer-based practice on the acquisition and maintenance of basic academic skills for two children with moderate to intensive disabilities. The special education teacher created individualized computer games that enabled the participants to independently practice academic skills that corresponded with their…
Dawson, Nicole; Gerhart, Hayden; Judge, Katherine S
Limited evidence exists regarding exercise interventions with individuals with dementia, which is often due to heterogeneity of methodology and outcomes being assessed. This led to the development and evaluation of a moderate-intensity home-based functional exercise program guided by theories from exercise science and the Strength-Based Approach. Data indicated excellent treatment adherence (99.04%) along with high levels of acceptability and feasibility in this sample (age 76.63 years (9.84); Mini Mental State Exam 18.87 (6.40)). This article informs future practice by highlighting the merits of a Strength-Based Approach in research examining exercise and physical rehabilitation to improve adherence and compliance with individuals with dementia.
Stoy, Paul; Bromley, Gabriel; Gerken, Tobias; Tang, Angela; Morgan, Mallory; Wood, David; Ahmed, Selena; Bauer, Brad; Brookshire, Jack; Haggerty, Julia; Jarchow, Meghann; Miller, Perry; Peyton, Brent; Rashford, Ben; Spangler, Lee; Swanson, David; Taylor, Suzi; Poulter, Ben
Conserving soil carbon resources while transitioning to a C negative economy is imperative for meeting global climate targets, and can also have critical but under-investigated regional effects. Parts of the North American northern Great Plains have experienced a remarkable 6 W m-2 decrease in summertime radiative forcing since the 1970s. Extreme temperature events now occur less frequently, maximum temperatures have decreased by some 2 ˚ C, and precipitation has increased by 10 mm per decade in some areas. This regional trend toward a cooler and wetter summer climate has coincided with changes in agricultural management. Namely, the practice of keeping fields fallow during summer (hereafter 'summerfallow') has declined by some 23 Mha from the 1970s until the present in the Canadian Prairie Provinces and across the U.S., an area of similar size to the United Kingdom. In addition to potential climate impacts, replacing summerfallow with no-till cropping systems results in lesser soil carbon losses - or even gains - and usually confers economic benefits. In other words, replacing summerfallow with no-till cropping may have resulted in a 'win-win-win' scenario for regional climate, soil carbon conservation, and farm-scale economics. The interaction between carbon, climate, and the economy in this region - and the precise domain that has experienced cooling - are still unknown, which limits our ability to forecast coupled carbon, climate, and human dynamics. Here, we use eddy covariance measurements to demonstrate that summerfallow results in carbon losses during the growing season of the same magnitude as carbon uptake by winter and spring wheat, on the order of 100 - 200 g C m-2 per growing season. We use eddy covariance energy flux measurements to model atmospheric boundary layer and lifted condensation level heights to demonstrate that observed regional changes in near-surface humidity (of up to 7%) are necessary to simulate observed increases in convective
Rossi, Gabriel Augusto Marques; Hoppe, Estevam Guilherme Lux; Mathias, Luis Antonio; Martins, Ana Maria Centola Vidal; Mussi, Leila Aparecida; Prata, Luiz Francisco
This study focused on estimating the economic losses resulting from cysticercosis at beef cattle farms that supply an export slaughterhouse located in the state of São Paulo, Brazil, and to identify the epidemiological risks factors involved in the disease to ascertain if these farms adopt Good Agricultural Practices (GAP). To this, we used data recorded in 2012 by Brazil's Federal Inspection Service (SIF) on the daily occurrence of the disease, according to the farm from which the animals originated. In addition, the associated risk factors were determined based on a case-control study at 48 farms. Cysticercosis was detected in 2.26% (95% CI 2.2-2.33) of the 190,903 bovines supplied by 556 farms in the following four states: 2.92% (95% CI 2.83-3.03) in São Paulo, 1.81% (95% CI 1.71-1.93) in Minas Gerais, 0.71% (95% CI 0.6-0.82) in Goiás and 1.11% (95% CI 0.79-1.57) in Mato Grosso do Sul, with significant differences in the epidemiological indices of these states. Cysticercosis was detected at 58.45% (95% CI 54.36-62.55) of the farms of this study, representing estimated economic losses of US$312,194.52 for the farmers. Lower prevalence of this disease were found at the farms qualified for exports to the European Union, indicating a statistically significant difference from those not qualified to export to Europe. The access of cattle to non-controlled water sources, as well as sport fishing activities near the farms, was identified as risk factors. Cysticercosis causes considerable losses in Brazil's beef supply chain, with lower prevalence appearing only at farms qualified to export to the European Union. As for the access of cattle to non-controlled water sources, this is an indication that GAP are not implemented by some farms, demonstrating the violation of international agreements by the industry and the farms. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Sustainable agriculture practices are increasingly being used by farmers to maintain soil quality, increase biodiversity, and promote production of food that is environmentally safe. There are several types of sustainable agriculture practices such as organic farming, crop rotation, and aquaculture. This lesson plan focuses on the sustainable…
Singer, Sarah Ann; Weed, Kym; Edwell, Jennifer; Jack, Jordynn; Thrailkill, Jane F
This essay argues that pre-health humanities programs should focus on intensive research practice for baccalaureate students and provides three guiding principles for implementing it. Although the interdisciplinary nature of health humanities permits baccalaureate students to use research methods from the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities, pre-health humanities coursework tends to force students to adopt only one of many disciplinary identities. Alternatively, an intensive research approach invites students to critically select and combine methods from multiple (and seemingly opposing) disciplines to ask and answer questions about health problems more innovatively. Using the authors' experiences with implementing health humanities baccalaureate research initiatives at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the authors contend that pre-health humanities programs should teach and study multiple disciplinary research methods and their values; examine how health humanities research might transfer across disciplines; and focus on mentoring opportunities for funding, presenting, and publishing research. These recommendations have the potential to create unprecedented research experiences for baccalaureate students as they prepare to enter careers within and beyond the allied health professions.
Price, Susanna; Via, Gabriele; Sloth, Erik; Guarracino, Fabio; Breitkreutz, Raoul; Catena, Emanuele; Talmor, Daniel
Echocardiography is increasingly used in the management of the critically ill patient as a non-invasive diagnostic and monitoring tool. Whilst in few countries specialized national training schemes for intensive care unit (ICU) echocardiography have been developed, specific guidelines for ICU physicians wishing to incorporate echocardiography into their clinical practice are lacking. Further, existing echocardiography accreditation does not reflect the requirements of the ICU practitioner. The WINFOCUS (World Interactive Network Focused On Critical UltraSound) ECHO-ICU Group drew up a document aimed at providing guidance to individual physicians, trainers and the relevant societies of the requirements for the development of skills in echocardiography in the ICU setting. The document is based on recommendations published by the Royal College of Radiologists, British Society of Echocardiography, European Association of Echocardiography and American Society of Echocardiography, together with international input from established practitioners of ICU echocardiography. The recommendations contained in this document are concerned with theoretical basis of ultrasonography, the practical aspects of building an ICU-based echocardiography service as well as the key components of standard adult TTE and TEE studies to be performed on the ICU. Specific issues regarding echocardiography in different ICU clinical scenarios are then described. Obtaining competence in ICU echocardiography may be achieved in different ways – either through completion of an appropriate fellowship/training scheme, or, where not available, via a staged approach designed to train the practitioner to a level at which they can achieve accreditation. Here, peri-resuscitation focused echocardiography represents the entry level – obtainable through established courses followed by mentored practice. Next, a competence-based modular training programme is proposed: theoretical elements delivered through
Wang, Jinyang; Zhang, Xiaolin; Liu, Yinglie; Pan, Xiaojian; Liu, Pingli; Chen, Zhaozhi; Huang, Taiqing; Xiong, Zhengqin
Background Evaluating the net exchange of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in conjunction with soil carbon sequestration may give a comprehensive insight on the role of agricultural production in global warming. Materials and Methods Measured data of methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) were utilized to test the applicability of the Denitrification and Decomposition (DNDC) model to a winter wheat – single rice rotation system in southern China. Six alternative scenarios were simulated against the baseline scenario to evaluate their long-term (45-year) impacts on net global warming potential (GWP) and greenhouse gas intensity (GHGI). Principal Results The simulated cumulative CH4 emissions fell within the statistical deviation ranges of the field data, with the exception of N2O emissions during rice-growing season and both gases from the control treatment. Sensitivity tests showed that both CH4 and N2O emissions were significantly affected by changes in both environmental factors and management practices. Compared with the baseline scenario, the long-term simulation had the following results: (1) high straw return and manure amendment scenarios greatly increased CH4 emissions, while other scenarios had similar CH4 emissions, (2) high inorganic N fertilizer increased N2O emissions while manure amendment and reduced inorganic N fertilizer scenarios decreased N2O emissions, (3) the mean annual soil organic carbon sequestration rates (SOCSR) under manure amendment, high straw return, and no-tillage scenarios averaged 0.20 t C ha−1 yr−1, being greater than other scenarios, and (4) the reduced inorganic N fertilizer scenario produced the least N loss from the system, while all the scenarios produced comparable grain yields. Conclusions In terms of net GWP and GHGI for the comprehensive assessment of climate change and crop production, reduced inorganic N fertilizer scenario followed by no-tillage scenario would be advocated for this specified cropping system. PMID
Marquina, S.; Rojas, A.; Donoso, L.; Rasse, R.; Giuliante, A.; Corona, O.; Perez, T.
We evaluated the effect of agricultural practices on NO and N2O emissions from corn fields at Northern Guárico, one of Venezuelan largest cereal production regions. Historically, the most common agricultural practice in these regions has been mono cropping. Tillage (T) and non-tillage (NT) of soils represent approximately 30 and 70% of the planted area, respectively. Comparative studies of the nitrogen losses associated with these agricultural practices are not available for these regions. This study was conducted at the farm "Tierra Nueva", Guárico State (9° 23' 33'' N, 66° 38' 30'' W) in two corn fields under tillage and non-tillage agricultural practice during the growing season (June-August 2006). A dry tropical forest, the primary ecosystem of the region, was evaluated for the same period of time. The corn and the forest fields were adjacent; therefore, they were exposed to the same meteorological conditions. The mean annual precipitation of the area is 622±97.3 mm (last 5 years). The soils are Vertisols (Typic Haplusterts). Nutrient soil concentrations (as nitrate and ammonium), water soil content and pH soil were measured in the fields for the same period of time. Soils were fertilized and planted simultaneously by a planting machine provided with a furrow opener where the fertilizer and seeds are incorporated between 0-10 cm depths. Tillage soils were fertilized on June 1st 2006 with 65 kgN/ha of NPK (13:18:16/3MgO, 3S; N as NH4Cl), whereas non-tillage soils were fertilized the next day with 56 kgN/ha of NPK (12:25:12/3MgO, 3S; N as NH4Cl). Second fertilization of both fields was done thirty-seven days later by broadcast adding 58 kgN/ha approximately, using nitrophosphate as fertilizer (NP 33-3: 33% N total; 16.7% N- NO3- and 16.6% N- NH4+). In general, NO and N2O soil emissions from both corn fields increased after fertilization events, and depend on water soil content and nutrient soil concentration. N2O soil emissions were 11 and 9 times larger in
The conversion of natural lands to agriculture affects the distribution of biological diversity across the landscape. In particular, cropland monocultures alter insect abundance and diversity compared to adjacent natural habitats, but nevertheless can provide large numbers of insect pests as prey i...
The potential future increase in corn-based biofuel may be expected to have a negative impact on water quality in streams and lakes of the Midwestern US due to increased agricultural chemicals usage. This study used the SWAT model to assess the impact of continuous-corn farming o...
Variability among farms across an agricultural landscape may reveal diverse biophysical contexts and experiences that show innovations and insights to improve nitrogen (N) cycling and yields, and thus the potential for multiple ecosystem services. In order to assess potential tradeoffs between yield...