WorldWideScience

Sample records for alternative agricultural crops

  1. Coexistence or contradiction? GM crops versus alternative agricultures in Europe

    OpenAIRE

    Levidow, Les; Boschert, Karin

    2008-01-01

    Agricultural biotechnology (agbiotech) has intersected with a wider debate about 'sustainable agriculture', especially in Europe. Agbiotech was initially promoted as an alternative which would avoid or remedy past problems of intensive agriculture, but such claims were soon challenged. Agbiotech has extended the dominant agri-industrial paradigm, while critics have counterposed alternatives corresponding to an agrarian-based rural development paradigm. Amid controversy over environmental a...

  2. Alternative crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Surplus cereal production in the EEC and decreasing product prices, mainly for cereals, has prompted considerable interest for new earnings in arable farming. The objective was to examine whether suggested new crops (fibre, oil, medicinal and alternative grains crops) could be considered as real alternatives. Whether a specific crop can compete economically with cereals and whether there is a market demand for the crop is analyzed. The described possibilities will result in ca. 50,000 hectares of new crops. It is expected that they would not immediately provide increased earnings, but in the long run expected price developments are more positive than for cereals. The area for new crops will not solve the current surplus cereal problem as the area used for new crops is only 3% of that used for cereals. Preconditions for many new crops is further research activities and development work as well as the establishment of processing units and organizational initiatives. Presumably, it is stated, there will then be a basis for a profitable production of new crops for some farmers. (AB) (47 refs.)

  3. Assessing Jatropha Crop Production Alternatives in Abandoned Agricultural Arid Soils Using MCA and GIS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serafin Corral

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper discusses the assessment of various biofuel crop production alternatives on the island of Fuerteventura using Jatropha crops. It adopts an integrated approach by carrying out a multi-criteria assessment with the support of participatory techniques and geographical information systems. Sixteen production alternatives were analyzed for growing Jatropha, and the results suggest that the best alternative involves using typical torrifluvent soils irrigated with recycled urban wastewater using surface drip irrigation covering 100% evapotranspiration. It was also determined that a potential area of 2546 ha could be used for cultivation within a radius of 10 km from a wastewater treatment plant. This level of production would supply 27.56% of the biofuel needs of Fuerteventura, thereby contributing to the 2020 target of the European Commission regarding biofuels for land transport.

  4. Alternative Agriculture

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2006-01-01

    Will the popularization of bioenergy, a new source for powering China, trigger another agricultural revolution? Skyrocketing energy prices, especially the oil shock in the first half of 2005, are pushing China to seek more substitutes for gasoline. A number of cities are turning to ethanol-blended gas made from com. Starting this month, the sale of regular gasoline will be brought to an end in nine of China's

  5. Crop protection in organic agriculture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Letourneau, D.; Bruggen, van A.H.C.

    2006-01-01

    The authors describe pests and diseases and their management in organic versus conventional agriculture. Also two case studies are described: 1. Pest and pathogen regulation in organic versus conventional cereal crops in Europe and 2. Pest and pathogen regulation in organic versus conventional tomat

  6. Crop Insurance, Premium Subsidy and Agricultural Output

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XU Jing-feng; LIAO Pu

    2014-01-01

    This paper studied the effects of crop insurance on agricultural output with an economic growth model. Based on Ramsey-Cass-Koopmans (RCK) model, a basic model of agriculture economic growth was developed. Extending the basic model to incorporate uncertainty and insurance mechanism, a risk model and a risk-insurance model were built to study the inlfuences of risk and crop insurance on agricultural output. Compared with the steady states of the three models, the following results are achieved:(i) agricultural output decreases if we introduce uncertainty into the risk-free model;(ii) crop insurance promotes agriculture economic growth if insurance mechanism is introduced into the risk model;(iii) premium subsidy constantly improves agricultural output. Our contribution is that we studied the effects of crop insurance and premium subsidy from the perspective of economic growth in a dynamic framework, and proved the output promotion of crop insurance theoretically.

  7. CROPS : high tech agricultural robots

    OpenAIRE

    Bontsema, J.; Hemming, J.; Pekkeriet, E.J.

    2014-01-01

    In the EU-funded CROPS (Clever Robots for Crops) project high tech robots are developed for site-specific spraying and selective harvesting of fruit and fruit vegetables. The harvesting robots are being designed to harvest high-value crops such as greenhouse vegetables, fruits in orchards and grapes for premium wines. The CROPS robots are also developed for canopy spraying in orchards and for precision target spraying in grape vines to reduce the use of pesticides. A CROPS robot will be able ...

  8. Agricultural Residues and Biomass Energy Crops

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    2016-06-01

    There are many opportunities to leverage agricultural resources on existing lands without interfering with production of food, feed, fiber, or forest products. In the recently developed advanced biomass feedstock commercialization vision, estimates of potentially available biomass supply from agriculture are built upon the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Long-Term Forecast, ensuring that existing product demands are met before biomass crops are planted. Dedicated biomass energy crops and agricultural crop residues are abundant, diverse, and widely distributed across the United States. These potential biomass supplies can play an important role in a national biofuels commercialization strategy.

  9. Alternatives to crop residues for soil amendment

    OpenAIRE

    Powell, J.M.; Unger, P.W.

    1997-01-01

    Metadata only record In semiarid agroecosystems, crop residues can provide important benefits of soil and water conservation, nutrient cycling, and improved subsequent crop yields. However, there are frequently multiple competing uses for residues, including animal forage, fuel, and construction material. This chapter discusses the various uses of crop residues and examines alternative soil amendments when crop residues cannot be left on the soil.

  10. SANITARY SEWAGE REUSE IN AGRICULTURAL CROP IRRIGATION

    OpenAIRE

    Lidiane Bittencourt Barroso; Delmira Beatriz Wolff

    2011-01-01

    The water availability was exceeded by demand, becoming a limiting factor in irrigated agriculture. This study aimed to provide a general theoretical framework on the issue of water reuse for agricultural purposes. This is due to the fact that we need a prior knowledge of the state of the art concerning the matter. To that end, we performed a review of irrigated agriculture, the effects on cultivated land and the development of agricultural crops as well as aspects of security to protect grou...

  11. Agricultural impacts: Mapping future crop geographies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Travis, William R.

    2016-06-01

    Modelled patterns of climate change impacts on sub-Saharan agriculture provide a detailed picture of the space- and timescales of change. They reveal hotspots where crop cultivation may disappear entirely, but also large areas where current or substitute crops will remain viable through this century.

  12. Mathematical Modeling of the Agriculture Crop Technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Drucioc

    1999-02-01

    Full Text Available The organized structure of computer system for economic and ecological estimation of agriculture crop technologies is described. The system is composed of six interconnected blocks. The linear, non-linear and stochastic mathematical models for machinery sizing and selection in farm-level cropping system is presented in the mathematical model block of computer system.

  13. Nitrogen abatement cost comparison for cropping systems under alternative management choices

    OpenAIRE

    Amon-Armah, Frederick; Yiridoe, Emmanuel K.; Hebb, Dale; Jamieson, Rob

    2013-01-01

    There is a need for cost-effective methods to reduce nitrogen pollution from agriculture. Marginal abatement cost (MAC) curves for nitrate-nitrogen pollution in an agricultural watershed are evaluated using estimated crop yield and nitrate pollution production functions for alternative cropping systems. The cropping systems considered in this study included i) two grain corn-based cropping systems; ii) two potato-based cropping systems; and iii) a vegetable-horticulture system, managed under ...

  14. Energy crops for agriculture - benefits or constraints?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Danish energy production is influenced by the EU agricultural policy and the following Danish implementation. In Denmark the maximum allowed land to set-aside is 21,6 percent of the fields in rotation. The compensation per hectare is approximately 330 EURO. The farmer is allowed to grow energy crops on these fields and still get the compensation for setting aside. The interest for growing short rotation crops as rapeseed or cereals on the set-aside fields is high. Due to very complex administrative procedures it is not possible to grow cereals for energy production on the set-aside fields at the moment. However, the growing of rapeseed is implemented. In 2001 there were grown 81.000 hectare of rapeseed in Denmark. 21.000 ha were grown on set-aside areas as non-food. The crop rotation for rape-seeds and cereals fits with the crop rotation on the other fields, for the farmer it is easy to grow a crop he has tried to grow before, the economy in growing annual rotation crops is known, and the farmer knows there is a market for the product. The interest for growing long rotation crops such as mischantus or willow exists, but the fields actually grown with the products are quite small. There is uncertainty about the market for the products. On the other hand power plants are unwilling to rely on biomass, which is not available today. The farmers are ready to produce energy crops if it is profitable and if certainty about a market exists. The present uncertainty about a market for long rotation crops makes it obvious to choose short rotation crops with a known market. Combination of different environmental objectives might secure a future for the long rotation crops. The idea of combining energy production, ground water production and reducing the greenhouse gas emission is foreseen to be one of the main arguments for energy crops in the future. (ba)

  15. Weed control through crop rotation and alternative management practices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Böhm, Herwart

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Economic as well as agricultural and socio-political changes have an impact on crop management and thus also on crop rotation design and the related effects on the weed flora. Likewise other changes in cultivation such as reduced tillage practices, earlier sowing date, etc. cause an increase in weed infestation resp. an increased use of herbicides and if so contribute to herbicide resistance. The positive effects of crop rotation, but also of alternative management practices such as choice of varieties, catch crops, mixed cropping, green chop, and the share of predators, as well as methods of direct non-chemical weed control are presented and discussed for both, conventional and organic farming. If alternative management methods should be more practiced, especially trade-offs need to be broken, or incentives be offered.

  16. Why we need GMO crops in agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    The fact that in a very short period of 35 years the global population will reach an estimated 9 billion people presents a massive challenge to agriculture: how do we feed all of these people with nutritious food in a sustainable way? At the present time the yields of most of our major crops are sta...

  17. Energy potential of agricultural crops in Kosovo

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Primary energy mix in Kosovo with 98 % consisting of lignite and only 2 % of water is far from portfolio of primary energy sources which could contribute to a sustainable and environmental friendly energy supply of the country. In order to improve the situation, government is supporting activities in favor of upgrading of electricity production capacities based on Renewable Energy Sources. Corresponding action plans and feed in tariffs are already in place. However, prior to any investment, one needs specific results on available potential. Current study provides results of the analysis of Kosovo potential for energy production by using of agricultural crops. Study is based on national statistics on available agricultural crops in Kosovo and provides results on biomass potential of crops, corresponding energy potential and an assessment of financial cost of energy produced.

  18. Agricultural Biodiversity: African alternatives to a ‘green revolution’

    OpenAIRE

    Andrew Mushita; Carol Thompson

    2008-01-01

    Although the global agricultural crises affect the African continent most adversely, African farmers and scientists offer successful alternatives to industrial monoculture. Andrew Mushita and Carol Thompson argue that while the ‘green revolution for Africa’ promotes private foreign ownership of genetically modified seeds and focuses on increased yields of a few crops, African alternatives honour farmers' rights and agricultural biodiversity, through innovative legislation and protocols, in or...

  19. Agriculture-led growth: foodgrains versus export crops in Madagascar

    OpenAIRE

    Dorosh, Paul; Haggblade, Steven

    1993-01-01

    This article compares the growth-generating power of alternative agricultural development strategies in Madagascar. Projections from a semi-input-output model and a recently developed social accounting matrix suggest that both paddy and export crops stimulate strong linkages with other sectors of the Malagasy economy. But since paddy output can be increased at lower cost, investment in rehabilitating small irrigated rice perimeters generates 40% to 100% more GOP than a comparable investment i...

  20. Agricultural innovations for sustainable crop production intensification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michele Pisante

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Sustainable crop production intensification should be the first strategic objective of innovative agronomic research for the next 40 years. A range of options exist (often very location specific for farming practices, approaches and technologies that ensure sustainability, while at the same time improving crop production. The main challenge is to encourage farmers in the use of appropriate technologies,  and  to  ensure  that  knowledge  about  sound  production  practices  is  increasingly accepted and applied by farmers. There is a huge, but underutilized potential to link farmers’ local knowledge with science-based innovations, through favourable institutional arrangements.  The same  holds  for  the  design,  implementation  and  monitoring  of  improved  natural  resource management  that  links  community  initiatives  to  external  expertise.  It is also suggested that a comprehensive effort be undertaken to measure different stages of the innovation system, including technological adoption and diffusion at the farm level, and to investigate the impact of agricultural policies on technological change and technical efficiency. This paper provides a brief review of agronomic management practices that support sustainable crop production system and evidence on developments  in the selection of crops and cultivars; describes farming systems for crop which take a predominantly ecosystem approach; discusses the scientific application of ecosystem principles for the management of pest and weed populations; reviews the  improvements in fertilizer and nutrient management that explain productivity growth; describes the benefits and constraints of irrigation technologies; and suggests a way forward. Seven changes in the context for agricultural development are proposed that heighten the need to examine how innovation occurs in the agricultural sector.

  1. Genetically Modified Crops: Towards Agricultural Growth, Agricultural Development, or Agricultural Sustainability?

    OpenAIRE

    Azadi, Hossein; Ghanian, Mansour; Ghuchani, Omid M.; Rafiaani, Parisa; Taning, Clauvis N. T.; Hajivand, Roghaye Y.; Dogot, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    The present debate on how to increase global food production in a sustainable way has focused on arguments over the pros and cons of genetically modified (GM) crops. Scientists in both public and private sectors clearly regard GM technology as a major new set of tools, whereas industry sees it as an opportunity for increased profits. However, it remains questionable whether GM crops can contribute to agricultural growth, agricultural development, and agricultural sustainability. This review p...

  2. Role of Wheat in Diversified Cropping Systems in Dryland Agriculture of Central Asia

    OpenAIRE

    SULEIMENOV*, Mekhlis; AKHMETOV, Kanat; KASKARBAYEV, Zheksembay; KIREYEV, Aitkalym

    2005-01-01

    Wheat is major crop in dryland agriculture of Central Asia. In most cases both spring wheat and winter wheat are grown in rotation with summer fallow. Studies were conducted in order to identify alternative crops which possibly could replace part of summer fallow and part of wheat area. Summer fallow was found inefficient practice for soil moisture accumulation in semiarid steppes of northern and southern Kazakhstan as well as in Kyrgyzstan. Many alternative crops were identified in all zones...

  3. SANITARY SEWAGE REUSE IN AGRICULTURAL CROP IRRIGATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lidiane Bittencourt Barroso

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The water availability was exceeded by demand, becoming a limiting factor in irrigated agriculture. This study aimed to provide a general theoretical framework on the issue of water reuse for agricultural purposes. This is due to the fact that we need a prior knowledge of the state of the art concerning the matter. To that end, we performed a review of irrigated agriculture, the effects on cultivated land and the development of agricultural crops as well as aspects of security to protect groups at risk. The amount of macro and micronutrients in the effluent may reduce or eliminate the use of commercial fertilizers. And this addition of organic matter acts as a soil conditioner, increasing its capacity to retain water. Depending on the characteristics of sewage, the practice of irrigation for long periods may lead to accumulation of toxic compounds and the significant increase of salinity. The inhibition of plant growth by salinity may be due to osmotic effect, causing drought and / or specific effects of ions, which can cause toxicity or nutritional imbalance. The minimization of human exposure to the practice of agricultural reuse is based on a set of mitigation measures that must be implemented by the authorities responsible for operating and monitoring systems for water recycling. It is concluded that the use of sewage depends on management of irrigation, monitoring of soil characteristics and culture.

  4. Transgenic Crops: Implications for Biodiversity and Sustainable Agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, Maria Alice; Altieri, Miguel A.

    2005-01-01

    The potential for genetically modified (GM) crops to threaten biodiversity conservation and sustainable agriculture is substantial. Megadiverse countries and centers of origin and/or diversity of crop species are particularly vulnerable regions. The future of sustainable agriculture may be irreversibly jeopardized by contamination of in situ…

  5. Nutrient deficiencies of agricultural crops in Papua New Guinea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hartemink, A.E.; Bourke, R.M.

    2000-01-01

    In Papua New Guinea the population is growing faster than the area under cultivation. As a result, land use is being intensified and soil nutrient depletion may occur, resulting in nutrient deficiencies of agricultural crops. This paper reviews nutrient deficiencies in the agricultural crops of Papu

  6. Status of Agricultural Production and Crop Variety Improvement in Thailand

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIAO Chun-hai; GUO Ying; YAO Ming-hua; WAN Zheng-huang

    2012-01-01

    We introduced basic conditions of agricultural production in Thailand, and variety improvement of major crops, including rice, cassava, rubber, and vegetable, in the hope of providing reference for agricultural production and crop variety improvement in Hubei Province and even in the whole country.

  7. Estimated Yield of Some Alternative Crops Under Varying Irrigation in Northeast Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Much of the irrigated acres in northeastern Colorado are devoted to corn grain production. Diversifying irrigated agricultural production in this region could result in water savings if alternative crops were grown that have lower water requirements than corn. Making such crop choice decisions initi...

  8. Rethinking Bioenergy from an Agricultural Perspective: Ethical Issues Raised by Perennial Energy Crop and Crop Residue Production in the UK and Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shortall, Orla

    The aim of this project is to explore the social and ethical dimensions of the agricultural production of perennial energy crop and crop residues for energy. Biomass – any living or recently living matter – is being promoted in industrialised countries as part of the transition from fossil fuels to....... Interviews with key stakeholders and analysis of key documents in the UK and Denmark were carried out to address the question of how perennial energy crops and crop residues are seen as overcoming previous controversies raised by food crop biofuels, in terms of their place in agricultural systems. The thesis...... argues that stakeholder’s visions of perennial energy crops and crop residues can be understood in terms of four models of agriculture: two industrial and two alternative. These are called “industrialism lite” that involves producing perennial energy crops on marginal land; life sciences integrated...

  9. GM Crops, Organic Agriculture and Breeding for Sustainability

    OpenAIRE

    Salvatore Ceccarelli

    2014-01-01

    The ongoing debate about the use of genetically-modified (GM) crops in agriculture has largely focused on food safety and genetic contamination issues. Given that the majority of GM crops have been produced to respond to the problem of crop yield reductions caused by diseases, insects and weeds, the paper argues that in those cases, the currently used GM crops are an unstable solution to the problem, because they represent such a strong selection pressure, that pests rapidly evolve resistance...

  10. INTEGRATING DESALINATION AND AGRICULTURAL SALINITY CONTROL ALTERNATIVES

    Science.gov (United States)

    The cost-effectiveness relationships for various agricultural and desalination alternatives for controlling salinity in irrigation return flows are developed. Selection of optimal salinity management strategies on a river basin scale is described as a problem of integrating optim...

  11. Correction of Measurement Error in Monthly USDA Pig Crop: Generating Alternative Data Series

    OpenAIRE

    Kim, In Seck; Plain, Ronald L.; Bullock, J. Bruce; Jei, Sang Young

    2008-01-01

    The imputed pig death loss contained in the reported monthly U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) pig crop data over the December 1995–June 2006 period ranged from 24.93% to 12.75%. Clearly, there are substantial measurement errors in the USDA monthly pig crop data. In this paper, we present alternative monthly U.S. pig crop data using the biological production process, which is compatible with prior knowledge of the U.S. hog industry. Alternative pig crop data are applied to a slaughter h...

  12. Crop Insurance Increases Water Withdrawals for Irrigation in Agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konar, M.; Deryugina, T.; Lin, X.

    2015-12-01

    Agricultural production remains particularly vulnerable to weather fluctuations and extreme events, such as droughts, floods, and heat waves. Crop insurance is a risk management tool that has been developed to mitigate some of this weather risk and protect farmer income in times of poor production. However, it is not clear what the implications of crop insurance are for crop irrigation. By providing a guaranteed level of income in case of crop failure, crop insurance can reduce the farmer's incentive to irrigate. Thus, crop insurance can decrease water use in times of drought and promote water sustainability. However, to minimize this "moral hazard", the insurer may require farmers to irrigate crops more than necessary. Further, by shifting crop production, crop insurance may increase demand for water. Thus, it is unclear whether crop insurance increases or decreases crop water use. Here, we determine the empirical relationship between crop insurance and irrigation withdrawals in the United States. To establish causality, we exploit variation in crop insurance policies over time, using an instrumental variables approach. We find that a 1% increase in insured crop acreage leads to a 0.223% increase in irrigation withdrawals, primarily from groundwater aquifers.

  13. Biogas Production from Energy Crops and Agriculture Residues

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Guangtao

    2010-01-01

    In this thesis, the feasibility of utilizing energy crops (willow and miscanthus) and agriculture residues (wheat straw and corn stalker) in an anaerobic digestion process for biogas production was evaluated. Potential energy crops and agriculture residues were screened according to their suitability for biogas production. Moreover, pretreatment of these biomasses by using wet explosion method was studied and the effect of the wet explosion process was evaluated based on the increase of (a) s...

  14. Sequencing Crop Genomes: A Gateway to Improve Tropical Agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Thottathil, Gincy Paily; Jayasekaran, Kandakumar; Othman, Ahmad Sofiman

    2016-01-01

    Agricultural development in the tropics lags behind development in the temperate latitudes due to the lack of advanced technology, and various biotic and abiotic factors. To cope with the increasing demand for food and other plant-based products, improved crop varieties have to be developed. To breed improved varieties, a better understanding of crop genetics is necessary. With the advent of next-generation DNA sequencing technologies, many important crop genomes have been sequenced. Primary ...

  15. Martin Qaim, Genetically Modified Crops and Agricultural Development

    OpenAIRE

    SMYTH, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    Abstract. Qaim is a leading academic researcher on the global impacts of genetically modified crops and his diligence and thoroughness abound in his newest book, Genetically Modified Crops and Agricultural Development. Qaim’s objective is to inform the reader about the contribution that GM crops have, and can, make to improving economic circumstances and contribute to increased food security, particularly in developing countries. He accomplishes this objective through an artful blending of st...

  16. Sustainable commercialization of new crops for the agricultural bioeconomy

    OpenAIRE

    Jordan, N.R; Dorn, K.; B. Runck; P. Ewing; Williams, A; Anderson, K A; L. Felice; K. Haralson; J. Goplen; Altendorf, K; Fernandez, A.; W. Phippen; Sedbrook, J.; Marks, M.; Wolf, K.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Diversification of agroecological systems to enhance agrobiodiversity is likely to be critical to advancing environmental, economic, and social sustainability of agriculture. Temperate-zone agroecological systems that are currently organized for production of summer-annual crops can be diversified by integration of fallow-season and perennial crops. Integration of such crops can improve sustainability of these agroecological systems, with minimal interference with current agricultura...

  17. Hyperspectral imagery for mapping crop yield for precision agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crop yield is perhaps the most important piece of information for crop management in precision agriculture. It integrates the effects of various spatial variables such as soil properties, topographic attributes, tillage, plant population, fertilization, irrigation, and pest infestations. A yield map...

  18. Germany wide seasonal flood risk analysis for agricultural crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klaus, Stefan; Kreibich, Heidi; Kuhlmann, Bernd; Merz, Bruno; Schröter, Kai

    2016-04-01

    In recent years, large-scale flood risk analysis and mapping has gained attention. Regional to national risk assessments are needed, for example, for national risk policy developments, for large-scale disaster management planning and in the (re-)insurance industry. Despite increasing requests for comprehensive risk assessments some sectors have not received much scientific attention, one of these is the agricultural sector. In contrast to other sectors, agricultural crop losses depend strongly on the season. Also flood probability shows seasonal variation. Thus, the temporal superposition of high flood susceptibility of crops and high flood probability plays an important role for agricultural flood risk. To investigate this interrelation and provide a large-scale overview of agricultural flood risk in Germany, an agricultural crop loss model is used for crop susceptibility analyses and Germany wide seasonal flood-frequency analyses are undertaken to derive seasonal flood patterns. As a result, a Germany wide map of agricultural flood risk is shown as well as the crop type most at risk in a specific region. The risk maps may provide guidance for federal state-wide coordinated designation of retention areas.

  19. Phosphorus from wastewater to crops: An alternative path involving microalgae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solovchenko, Alexei; Verschoor, Antonie M; Jablonowski, Nicolai D; Nedbal, Ladislav

    2016-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) is a non-renewable resource, a major plant nutrient that is essential for modern agriculture. Currently, global food and feed production depends on P extracted from finite phosphate rock reserves mainly confined to a small number of countries. P limitation and its potential socio-economic impact may well exceed the potential effects of fossil fuel scarcity. The efficiency of P usage today barely reaches 20%, with the remaining 80% ending up in wastewater or in surface waters as runoff from fields. When recovered from wastewater, either chemically or biologically, P is often present in a form that does not meet specifications for agricultural use. As an alternative, the potential of microalgae to accumulate large quantities of P can be a way to direct this resource back to crop plants. Algae can acquire and store P through luxury uptake, and the P enriched algal biomass can be used as bio-fertilizer. Technology of large-scale algae cultivation has made tremendous progress in the last decades, stimulated by perspectives of obtaining third generation biofuels without requiring arable land or fresh water. These new cultivation technologies can be used for solar-driven recycling of P and other nutrients from wastewater into algae-based bio-fertilizers. In this paper, we review the specifics of P uptake from nutrient-rich waste streams, paying special attention to luxury uptake by microalgal cells and the potential application of P-enriched algal biomass to fertilize crop soils. PMID:26795876

  20. Topography Mediates the Influence of Cover Crops on Soil Nitrate Levels in Row Crop Agricultural Systems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moslem Ladoni

    Full Text Available Supplying adequate amounts of soil N for plant growth during the growing season and across large agricultural fields is a challenge for conservational agricultural systems with cover crops. Knowledge about cover crop effects on N comes mostly from small, flat research plots and performance of cover crops across topographically diverse agricultural land is poorly understood. Our objective was to assess effects of both leguminous (red clover and non-leguminous (winter rye cover crops on potentially mineralizable N (PMN and [Formula: see text] levels across a topographically diverse landscape. We studied conventional, low-input, and organic managements in corn-soybean-wheat rotation. The rotations of low-input and organic managements included rye and red clover cover crops. The managements were implemented in twenty large undulating fields in Southwest Michigan starting from 2006. The data collection and analysis were conducted during three growing seasons of 2011, 2012 and 2013. Observational micro-plots with and without cover crops were laid within each field on three contrasting topographical positions of depression, slope and summit. Soil samples were collected 4-5 times during each growing season and analyzed for [Formula: see text] and PMN. The results showed that all three managements were similar in their temporal and spatial distributions of NO3-N. Red clover cover crop increased [Formula: see text] by 35% on depression, 20% on slope and 32% on summit positions. Rye cover crop had a significant 15% negative effect on [Formula: see text] in topographical depressions but not in slope and summit positions. The magnitude of the cover crop effects on soil mineral nitrogen across topographically diverse fields was associated with the amount of cover crop growth and residue production. The results emphasize the potential environmental and economic benefits that can be generated by implementing site-specific topography-driven cover crop management

  1. Organic Agriculture - Driving Innovations in Crop Research

    OpenAIRE

    Forster, Dionys; Adamtey, Noah; Messmer, Monika M.; Pfiffner, Lukas; Baker, Brian; Huber, Beate; Niggli, Urs

    2012-01-01

    At present, agriculture faces the unprecedented challenge of securing food supplies for a rapidly growing human population, while seeking to minimize adverse impacts on the environment and to reduce the use of non-renewable resources and energy. A shift towards sustainable agricultural production entails the adoption of more system-oriented strategies that include farmderived inputs and productivity based on ecological processes and functions (Garnett and Godfray, 2012). Sustainable agricultu...

  2. The impacts of conservation agriculture on crop yield in China depend on specific practices, crops and cropping regions

    OpenAIRE

    Chengyan Zheng; Yu Jiang; Changqing Chen; Yanni Sun; Jinfei Feng; Aixing Deng; Zhenwei Song; Weijian Zhang

    2014-01-01

    For smooth and wide application of conservation agriculture (CA), remaining uncertainties about its impacts on crop yield need to be reduced. Based on previous field experiments in China, a meta-analysis was performed to quantify the actual impacts of CA practices (NT: no/reduced-tillage only, CTSR: conventional tillage with straw retention, NTSR: NT with straw retention) on crop yields as compared to conventional tillage without straw retention (CT). Although CA practices increased crop yiel...

  3. Biogas Production from Energy Crops and Agriculture Residues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Guangtao

    suitability for biogas production. Moreover, pretreatment of these biomasses by using wet explosion method was studied and the effect of the wet explosion process was evaluated based on the increase of (a) sugar release and (b) methane potential when comparing the pretreated biomass and raw biomass. Ensiling......In this thesis, the feasibility of utilizing energy crops (willow and miscanthus) and agriculture residues (wheat straw and corn stalker) in an anaerobic digestion process for biogas production was evaluated. Potential energy crops and agriculture residues were screened according to their...... of perennial crops was tested as a storage method and pretreatment method for enhancement of the biodegradability of the crops. The efficiency of the silage process was evaluated based on (a) the amount of biomass loss during storage and (b) the effect of the silage on methane potential. Co...

  4. Energy crop cultivation in the environmental and agricultural legislation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The book on energy crop cultivation in the environmental and agricultural legislation covers the following issues: Part 1: Significance of the energy crop cultivation in Germany: Termini, development of renewable energies and bioenergy, political and legal frame work; Part 2: Disadvantageous environmental impact of the energy crop cultivation and possibilities for an environmentally compatible agriculture: subject of protection and mandate for protection, ways of energy plant utilization and disadvantageous consequences, possibilities for a sustainable concept for agricultural practices; Part 3: Legal instruments for the control of energy plant cultivation: requirements for the legal instruments for environmental protection, soil protection legislation, environmental protection legislation, environmentally relevant farming legislation; Part 4: Polymorphism of the legal instruments - considerations on the selective decision: existing instrumental types; public environmental legislation, environmental penal laws and private environmental protection legislation.

  5. Sustainable commercialization of new crops for the agricultural bioeconomy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N.R. Jordan

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Diversification of agroecological systems to enhance agrobiodiversity is likely to be critical to advancing environmental, economic, and social sustainability of agriculture. Temperate-zone agroecological systems that are currently organized for production of summer-annual crops can be diversified by integration of fallow-season and perennial crops. Integration of such crops can improve sustainability of these agroecological systems, with minimal interference with current agricultural production. Importantly, these crops can provide feedstocks for a wide range of new bio-products that are forming a new agricultural bioeconomy, potentially providing greatly increased economic incentives for diversification. However, while there are many fallow-season and perennial crops that might be used in such a “bioeconomic” strategy for diversification, most are not yet well adapted and highly-marketable. Efforts are underway to enhance adaptation and marketability of many such crops. Critically, these efforts require a strategic approach that addresses the inherent complexity of these projects. We outline a suitable approach, which we term “sustainable commercialization”: a coordinated innovation process that integrates a new crop into the agriculture of a region, while intentionally addressing economic, environmental and social sustainability challenges via multi-stakeholder governance. This approach centers on a concerted effort to coordinate and govern innovation in three critical areas: germplasm development, multifunctional agroecosystem design and management, and development of end uses, supply chains, and markets. To exemplify the approach, we describe an ongoing effort to commercialize a new fallow-season crop, field pennycress (Thlaspi arvense L..

  6. Control of Vertebrate Pests of Agricultural Crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wingard, Robert G.; Studholme, Clinton R.

    This agriculture extension service publication of Pennsylvania State University discusses the damage from and control of vertebrate pests. Specific discussions describe the habits, habitat, and various control measures for blackbirds and crows, deer, meadow and pine mice, European starlings, and woodchucks. Where confusion with non-harmful species…

  7. Biogas production from energy crops and agriculture residues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, G.

    2010-12-15

    In this thesis, the feasibility of utilizing energy crops (willow and miscanthus) and agriculture residues (wheat straw and corn stalker) in an anaerobic digestion process for biogas production was evaluated. Potential energy crops and agriculture residues were screened according to their suitability for biogas production. Moreover, pretreatment of these biomasses by using wet explosion method was studied and the effect of the wet explosion process was evaluated based on the increase of (a) sugar release and (b) methane potential when comparing the pretreated biomass and raw biomass. Ensiling of perennial crops was tested as a storage method and pretreatment method for enhancement of the biodegradability of the crops. The efficiency of the silage process was evaluated based on (a) the amount of biomass loss during storage and (b) the effect of the silage on methane potential. Co-digestion of raw and wet explosion pretreated energy crops and agriculture residues with swine manure at various volatile solids (VS) ratio between crop and manure was carried out by batch tests and continuous experiments. The efficiency of the co-digestion experiment was evaluated based on (a) the methane potential in term of ml CH4 produced per g of VS-added and (b) the amount of methane produced per m3 of reactor volume. (Author)

  8. Biomass Supply from Alternative Cellulosic Crops and Crop Residues: A Preliminary Spatial Bioeconomic Modeling Approach

    OpenAIRE

    Egbendewe-Mondzozo, Aklesso; Swinton, Scott M.; Izaurralde, R. Cesar; Manowitz, David H.; Zhang, Xuesong

    2010-01-01

    This paper introduces a spatial bioeconomic model for study of potential cellulosic biomass supply at regional scale. By modeling the profitability of alternative crop production practices, it captures the opportunity cost of replacing current crops by cellulosic biomass crops. The model draws upon biophysical crop input-output coefficients, price and cost data, and spatial transportation costs in the context of profit maximization theory. Yields are simulated using temperature, precipitation...

  9. Estimation of agricultural crop bioenergy resource availability in Kansas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper provides a methodology for estimating the amount of agricultural crop residue that can be removed for energy purposes without adversely affecting soil productivity. The agricultural crops considered in this study were corn (irrigated and dryland), grain sorghum (irrigated and dryland) and wheat (irrigated and continuously cropped). Computer programs (ACRRE and ACRWE) were developed to simulate the effect of residue removal on field soil loss due to these erosive processes. Evaluation of residue availability was based on limiting soil loss (tons/acre/year) resulting from either rainfall or wind erosion. The analysis was performed on each soil type not found to be highly erodible in each county in Kansas. The quantity of crop residue that can be removed without exceeding the tolerable limit for soil loss is strongly influenced by geographic location, soil type (physical characteristics), and cultural practices. Equivalent erosion protection provided by each of the crops is directly related to the quantity of residue that can be removed. Available biomass from the three crops considered varies from 0 to roughly 72 percent of the above-ground crop residue produced

  10. Valuing Catastrophic Losses for Perennial Agricultural Crops

    OpenAIRE

    Adams, Damian C.; Kilmer, Richard L.; Moss, Charles B.; Schmitz, Andrew

    2003-01-01

    Courts are often required to estimate changes in welfare to agricultural operations from catastrophic events. For example, courts must assign damages in lawsuits, such as with pesticide drift cases, or determine 'just compensation' when the government takes private land for public use, as with the removal of dairy farms from environmentally sensitive land or destruction of canker-contaminated citrus trees. In economics, the traditional method of estimating changes in producer welfare is the c...

  11. Crop productivity and economics during the transition to alternative cropping systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Increasing economic pressures and continued environmental concerns in agricultural production have heightened the need for more sustainable cropping systems. Research is needed to identify systems that simultaneously improve the economic and social viability of farms and rural communities while prot...

  12. Integrating crops and livestock in subtropical agricultural systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Iain A; Tarawali, Shirley; Blümmel, Michael; Gerard, Bruno; Teufel, Nils; Herrero, Mario

    2012-03-30

    As the demand for livestock products increases, and is expected to continue to increase over the next few decades, especially in developing countries, smallholder mixed systems are becoming more intensive. However, with limited land and water resources and concern about the environmental impact of agricultural practices and climate change, the challenge is to find ways of increasing productivity that do not compromise household food security, but rather increase incomes equitably and sustain or enhance the natural resource base. In developed countries there has been increased specialisation of crop and livestock production. In contrast, the majority of livestock in developing countries is kept in mixed crop/livestock systems. Crops (cereal grains and pulses) and crop residues provide the basis of the diet for animals, e.g. cereal straw fed to dairy cattle or sweet potato vines fed to pigs. Animal manure can provide significant nutrient inputs to crops. Water productivity is higher in mixed crop/livestock systems compared with growing crops alone. Mixed systems allow for a more flexible and profitable use of family labour where employment opportunities are limited. They also spread risks across several enterprises, a consideration in smallholder systems that may become even more important under certain climate change scenarios. Integrated crop/livestock systems can play a significant role in improving global food security but will require appropriate technological developments, institutional arrangements and supportive policy environments if they are to fulfil that potential in the coming decades. PMID:21769884

  13. Sequencing Crop Genomes: A Gateway to Improve Tropical Agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thottathil, Gincy Paily; Jayasekaran, Kandakumar; Othman, Ahmad Sofiman

    2016-02-01

    Agricultural development in the tropics lags behind development in the temperate latitudes due to the lack of advanced technology, and various biotic and abiotic factors. To cope with the increasing demand for food and other plant-based products, improved crop varieties have to be developed. To breed improved varieties, a better understanding of crop genetics is necessary. With the advent of next-generation DNA sequencing technologies, many important crop genomes have been sequenced. Primary importance has been given to food crops, including cereals, tuber crops, vegetables, and fruits. The DNA sequence information is extremely valuable for identifying key genes controlling important agronomic traits and for identifying genetic variability among the cultivars. However, massive DNA re-sequencing and gene expression studies have to be performed to substantially improve our understanding of crop genetics. Application of the knowledge obtained from the genomes, transcriptomes, expression studies, and epigenetic studies would enable the development of improved varieties and may lead to a second green revolution. The applications of next generation DNA sequencing technologies in crop improvement, its limitations, future prospects, and the features of important crop genome projects are reviewed herein. PMID:27019684

  14. Economically Feasible Crop Production Alternatives to Peanuts in Southwestern Oklahoma

    OpenAIRE

    Devkota, Shankar; Holcomb, Rodney B.; Taylor, Merritt J.; Epplin, Francis M.

    2006-01-01

    Changes in the U.S. peanut program have resulted in drastically decreased planted acres and forced many peanut producers in the Southwest to consider alternative crops. This study examined the economic risk associated with producing peanuts and common alternatives to peanuts. Seedless watermelon is an alternative for risk preferring farmers whereas, irrigated peanut is the best choice for risk averse farmers.

  15. Pollution of agricultural crops with lanthanides, thorium and uranium studied

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kučera, Jan; Mizera, Jiří; Řanda, Zdeněk; Vávrová, M.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 271, č. 3 (2007), s. 581-587. ISSN 0236-5731 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10480505 Keywords : thorium, uranium * agricultural crops * neutron activation analysis Subject RIV: BE - Theoretical Physics Impact factor: 0.499, year: 2007

  16. TREND EVALUATION OF AGRICULTURAL EXPORT CROPS IN NIGERIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aniekan Jim Akpaeti

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The study uses the Ordinary Least Square (OLS regression technique to evaluate the growth rates of three agricultural export crops (cocoa, palm kernel and palm oil in Nigeria between1970-2009. The result reveals that growth rates in export of these crops are higher in the financial sector reform period than in the pre-financial sector reform period except in palm kernel and are statistically significant at 5% probability level. This therefore suggests the need to enhance the production of these crops through provision of basic farm inputs, extension, proper financing as well as pursue policies that will encourage exportation and discourage the importation of these crops as the way out.

  17. GM Crops, Organic Agriculture and Breeding for Sustainability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvatore Ceccarelli

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The ongoing debate about the use of genetically-modified (GM crops in agriculture has largely focused on food safety and genetic contamination issues. Given that the majority of GM crops have been produced to respond to the problem of crop yield reductions caused by diseases, insects and weeds, the paper argues that in those cases, the currently used GM crops are an unstable solution to the problem, because they represent such a strong selection pressure, that pests rapidly evolve resistance. Organic agriculture practices provide a more sustainable way of producing healthy food; however, the lower yields often associated with those practices, making the resultant healthy food more expensive, open the criticism that such practices will not be able to feed human populations. Evolutionary plant breeding offers the possibility of using the evolutionary potential of crops to our advantage by producing a continuous flow of varieties better adapted to organic systems, to climate change and to the ever changing spectrum of pests, without depending on chemical control.

  18. ORGANIC FARMING FOR CROP IMPROVEMENT AND SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE IN THE ERA OF CLIMATE CHANGE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajib Roychowdhury

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Sustainable development has caught the imagination and action of the world for more than a decade. Sustainable agriculture is necessary to attain the goal of sustainable development. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO, sustainable agriculture is the successful management of resources to satisfy the changing human needs while maintaining or enhancing the quality of environment and conserving natural resources. All definitions of sustainable agriculture lay great emphasis on maintaining an agricultural growth rate, which can meet the demand for food of all living beings without draining the basic resources towards crop improvement. Organic farming is one of the several approaches found to meet the objectives of sustainable agriculture. Most of the techniques used in organic farming like inter-cropping, mulching and integration of crops and livestock are not alien to agriculture systems including the traditional agricultural practices. However, organic farming is based on various laws and certification programmes, which prohibit the use of almost all synthetic inputs and the central theme of this method is the health of soil. The adverse effects of modern agricultural practices on the farm and also on the health of living beings and thus on the environment has been well documented all over the world. Application of technology, particularly the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides all around us has persuaded people to think aloud. As a result of global climatic changes, their negative effects on the environment are manifested through soil erosion, water shortages, salination, soil contamination, genetic erosion, Organic farming is one of the widely used methods, which is thought as the best alternative to avoid the ill effects of chemical farming. It also has far more advantages over the conventional and other modern agricultural practices that are available today.

  19. Genetically modified crops: the fastest adopted crop technology in the history of modern agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khush Gurdev S

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The major scientific advances of the last century featured the identification of the structure of DNA, the development of molecular biology and the technology to exploit these advances. These breakthroughs gave us new tools for crop improvement, including molecular marker-aided selection (MAS and genetic modification (GM. MAS improves the efficiency of breeding programs, and GM allows us to accomplish breeding objectives not possible through conventional breeding approaches. MAS is not controversial and is now routinely used in crop improvement programs. However, the international debate about the application of genetic manipulation to crop improvement has slowed the adoption of GM crops in developing as well as in European countries. Since GM crops were first introduced to global agriculture in 1996, Clive James has published annual reports on the global status of commercialized GM crops as well as special reports on individual GM crops for The International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA. His 34th report, Global Status of Commercialized Biotech/ GM crops: 2011 [1] is essential reading for those who are concerned about world food security.

  20. Agricultural sectoral demand and crop productivity response across the world

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, M.; Ray, D. K.; Cassidy, E. S.; Foley, J. A.

    2013-12-01

    With an increasing and increasingly affluent population, humans will need to roughly double agricultural production by 2050. Continued yield growth forms the foundation of all future strategies aiming to increase agricultural production while slowing or eliminating cropland expansion. However, a recent analysis by one of our co-authors has shown that yield trends in many important maize, wheat and rice growing regions have begun stagnating or declining from the highs seen during the green revolution (Ray et al. 2013). Additional research by our group has shown that nearly 50% of new agricultural production since the 1960s has gone not to direct human consumption, but instead to animal feed and other industrial uses. Our analysis for GLP looks at the convergence of these two trends by examining time series utilization data for 16 of the biggest crops to determine how demand from different sectors has shaped our land-use and intensification strategies around the world. Before rushing headlong into the next agricultural doubling, it would be prudent to first consult our recent agricultural history to better understand what was driving past changes in production. Using newly developed time series dataset - a fusion of cropland maps with historic agricultural census data gathered from around the world - we can examine yield and harvested area trends over the last half century for 16 top crops. We combine this data with utilization rates from the FAO Food Balance Sheet to see how demand from different sectors - food, feed, and other - has influenced long-term growth trends from the green revolution forward. We will show how intensification trends over time and across regions have grown or contracted depending on what is driving the change in production capacity. Ray DK, Mueller ND, West PC, Foley JA (2013) Yield Trends Are Insufficient to Double Global Crop Production by 2050. PLoS ONE 8(6): e66428. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0066428

  1. The impacts of conservation agriculture on crop yield in China depend on specific practices, crops and cropping regions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chengyan; Zheng; Yu; Jiang; Changqing; Chen; Yanni; Sun; Jinfei; Feng; Aixing; Deng; Zhenwei; Song; Weijian; Zhang

    2014-01-01

    For smooth and wide application of conservation agriculture(CA), remaining uncertainties about its impacts on crop yield need to be reduced. Based on previous field experiments in China, a meta-analysis was performed to quantify the actual impacts of CA practices(NT: no/reduced-tillage only, CTSR: conventional tillage with straw retention, NTSR: NT with straw retention) on crop yields as compared to conventional tillage without straw retention(CT).Although CA practices increased crop yield by 4.6% on average, there were large variations in their impacts. For each CA practice, CTSR and NTSR significantly increased crop yield by 4.9%and 6.3%, respectively, compared to CT. However, no significant effect was found for NT. Among ecological areas, significant positive effects of CA practices were found in areas with an annual precipitation below 600 mm. Similar effects were found in areas with annual mean air temperature above 5 °C. For cropping regions, CA increased crop yield by 6.4% and 5.5%compared to CT in Northwest and South China, respectively, whereas no significant effects were found in the North China and Northeast China regions. Among crops, the positive effects of CA practices were significantly higher in maize(7.5%) and rice(4.1%) than in wheat(2.9%). NT likely decreased wheat yield. Our results indicate that there are great differences in the impacts of CA practices on crop yield, owing to regional variation in climate and crop types. CA will most likely increase maize yield but reduce wheat yield. It is strongly recommended to apply CA with crop straw retention in maize cropping areas and seasons with a warm and dry climate pattern.

  2. The impacts of conservation agriculture on crop yield in China depend on specific practices, crops and cropping regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chengyan Zheng

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available For smooth and wide application of conservation agriculture (CA, remaining uncertainties about its impacts on crop yield need to be reduced. Based on previous field experiments in China, a meta-analysis was performed to quantify the actual impacts of CA practices (NT: no/reduced-tillage only, CTSR: conventional tillage with straw retention, NTSR: NT with straw retention on crop yields as compared to conventional tillage without straw retention (CT. Although CA practices increased crop yield by 4.6% on average, there were large variations in their impacts. For each CA practice, CTSR and NTSR significantly increased crop yield by 4.9% and 6.3%, respectively, compared to CT. However, no significant effect was found for NT. Among ecological areas, significant positive effects of CA practices were found in areas with an annual precipitation below 600 mm. Similar effects were found in areas with annual mean air temperature above 5 °C. For cropping regions, CA increased crop yield by 6.4% and 5.5% compared to CT in Northwest and South China, respectively, whereas no significant effects were found in the North China and Northeast China regions. Among crops, the positive effects of CA practices were significantly higher in maize (7.5% and rice (4.1% than in wheat (2.9%. NT likely decreased wheat yield. Our results indicate that there are great differences in the impacts of CA practices on crop yield, owing to regional variation in climate and crop types. CA will most likely increase maize yield but reduce wheat yield. It is strongly recommended to apply CA with crop straw retention in maize cropping areas and seasons with a warm and dry climate pattern.

  3. Energy embodiment in Brazilian agriculture: an overview of 23 crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    João Paulo Soto Veiga

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The amount of energy required to produce a commodity or to supply a service varies from one production system to another and consequently giving rise to differing levels of environmental efficiency. Moreover, since energy prices have been continuously increasing over time, this energy amount may be a factor that has economic worth. Biomass production has a variety of end-products such as food, energy, and fiber; thus, taking into account the similarity in end-product of different crops (e.g.: sunflower, peanuts, or soybean for oil it is possible to evaluate which crops require less energy per functional unit, such as starch, oil, and protein. This information can be used in decision-making about policies for food safety or bioenergy. In this study, 23 crops were evaluated allowing for a comparison in terms of energy embodied per functional unit. Crops were grouped as follows: starch, oil, horticultural, perennial and fiber, to provide for a deeper analysis of alternatives for the groups, and subsidize further studies comparing conventional and alternative production systems such as organic or genetically modified organisms, in terms of energy. The best energy balance observed was whole sugarcane (juice, bagasse and straw with a surplus of 268 GJ ha−1 yr−1; palm shows the highest energy return on investment with a ratio of approximately 30:1. For carbohydrates and protein production, cassava and soybean, respectively, emerged as the crops offering the greatest energy savings in the production of these functional foods.

  4. Crop residues reuse to improve agricultural soil quality

    OpenAIRE

    Cornejo, Jennifer Moreno; Cano, Angel Faz

    2008-01-01

    Since the 70´s in The Autonomous Community of the Region of Murcia, the irrigated agricultural area has increased, especially in the agrarian district “Comarca del Campo de Cartagena”, (South East of Spain). As a consequence, the amount of crop residues generated has gone up too. At the present, harvest residues constitute a very serious environmental problem because, in most cases, these residues are dehydrated on the land and burned later on with subsequent negative consequences...

  5. Sustainability assessment of GM crops in a Swiss agricultural context

    OpenAIRE

    Speiser, Bernhard; Stolze, Matthias; Oehen,Bernadette; Gessler, Cesare; Weibel, Franco; Bravin, Esther; Kilchenmann, Adeline; Widmer, Albert; Charles, Raffael; Lang, Andreas; Stamm, Christian; Triloff, Peter; Tamm, Lucius

    2012-01-01

    International audience The aim of this study was to provide an ex ante assessment of the sustainability of genetically modified (GM) crops under the agricultural conditions prevailing in Switzerland. The study addressed the gaps in our knowledge relating to (1) the agronomic risks/benefits in production systems under Swiss conditions (at field and rotation/orchard level), (2) the economic and socio-economic impacts associated with altered farming systems, and (3) the agro-ecological risks/...

  6. Intragenesis and cisgenesis as alternatives to transgenic crop development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holme, Inger; Wendt, Toni; Holm, Preben Bach

    2013-01-01

    One of the major concerns of the general public about transgenic crops relates to the mixing of genetic materials between species that cannot hybridize by natural means. To meet this concern, the two transformation concepts cisgenesis and intragenesis were developed as alternatives to transgenesis...... from cisgenesis by allowing use of new gene combinations created by in vitro rearrangements of functional genetic elements. Several surveys show higher public acceptance of intragenic/cisgenic crops compared to transgenic crops. Thus, although the intragenic and cisgenic concepts were introduced...... internationally only 9 and 7 years ago, several different traits in a variety of crops have currently been modified according to these concepts. Five of these crops are now in field trials and two have pending applications for deregulation. Currently, intragenic/cisgenic plants are regulated as transgenic plants...

  7. Management controls on nitrous oxide emissions from row crop agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelfand, I.; Shcherbak, I.; Millar, N.; Robertson, G. P.

    2011-12-01

    Agriculture is a significant source of the potent greenhouse gas (GHG) nitrous oxide (N2O), accounting for ~70% of total anthropic N2O emissions in the US primarily as a result of N fertilizer application. Emissions of N2O are the largest contributor to the global warming potential of row-crop agriculture. Management, including choice of crop type and rotation strongly impacts N2O emissions, but continuous emissions data from row-crops over multiple rotations are lacking. Empirical quantification of these long-term emissions and the development of crop- and rotation-specific N2O emission factors are vital for improving estimates of agricultural GHG emissions, important for informing management practices to reduce agriculture's GHG footprint, and developing mitigation protocols for environmental markets. Over 20 years we measured soil N2O emissions and calculated crop and management specific emission factors in four continuous rotations of corn (Zea mays) - soybean (Glycine max) - wheat (Triticum aestivum) under conventional tillage (CT), zero tillage (NT), low chemical input (LI), and biologically (Org) based management. Two of these systems (LI and Org) included winter cover crops, red clover (Trifolium pratense) or ray (Secale cereale). While average soil N2O fluxes in all systems where similar (2.9±0.2 to 3.8±0.5 g N2O-N ha-1 d-1), there was a significant interaction of total emissions with crop and phase. Surprisingly, the lowest total emissions from the corn period of the rotation were from CT, and the highest from LI, with 608±4 and 983±8 g N2O-N ha-1 crop year-1, respectively. Total emissions during the wheat period of the rotation showed the opposite trend, with total emissions of 942±7 and 524±38 g N2O-N ha-1 crop year-1, for CT ant LI, respectively. Total emissions from the soybean period of the rotation were highest under NT and lowest under CT management (526±5 and 296±2 g N2O-N ha-1 crop year-1, respectively). Emission efficiency, N2O emitted

  8. Cost Methodology for Biomass Feedstocks: Herbaceous Crops and Agricultural Residues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Turhollow Jr, Anthony F [ORNL; Webb, Erin [ORNL; Sokhansanj, Shahabaddine [ORNL

    2009-12-01

    This report describes a set of procedures and assumptions used to estimate production and logistics costs of bioenergy feedstocks from herbaceous crops and agricultural residues. The engineering-economic analysis discussed here is based on methodologies developed by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) and the American Agricultural Economics Association (AAEA). An engineering-economic analysis approach was chosen due to lack of historical cost data for bioenergy feedstocks. Instead, costs are calculated using assumptions for equipment performance, input prices, and yield data derived from equipment manufacturers, research literature, and/or standards. Cost estimates account for fixed and variable costs. Several examples of this costing methodology used to estimate feedstock logistics costs are included at the end of this report.

  9. Agronomic conditions and crop evolution in ancient Near East agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araus, José L; Ferrio, Juan P; Voltas, Jordi; Aguilera, Mònica; Buxó, Ramón

    2014-01-01

    The appearance of agriculture in the Fertile Crescent propelled the development of Western civilization. Here we investigate the evolution of agronomic conditions in this region by reconstructing cereal kernel weight and using stable carbon and nitrogen isotope signatures of kernels and charcoal from a set of 11 Upper Mesopotamia archaeological sites, with chronologies spanning from the onset of agriculture to the turn of the era. We show that water availability for crops, inferred from carbon isotope discrimination (Δ(13)C), was two- to fourfold higher in the past than at present, with a maximum between 10,000 and 8,000 cal BP. Nitrogen isotope composition (δ(15)N) decreased over time, which suggests cultivation occurring under gradually less-fertile soil conditions. Domesticated cereals showed a progressive increase in kernel weight over several millennia following domestication. Our results provide a first comprehensive view of agricultural evolution in the Near East inferred directly from archaeobotanical remains. PMID:24853475

  10. The game damages on agricultural crops in Croatia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hrvoje Novosel

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Conflicts between wildlife and humans have been reported from all over the world, but in Croatia the extent and intensity of the conflict is increasing. Agricultural damage by game is a major concern for both agricultural and wildlife agencies at the national level. In this study 4,695 cases of game damage over a 4-year period were analysed. Results indicated that the total amount of economic impact on agriculture from game damage was significant. The distribution of payments shows that a majority of payments have lower economic value with an average amount of single payment being 477.08 €. The annual number of payments was found to have a negative correlation coefficient (-0.469 to the total payment amount for damages. According to the number of payments (68% of the number of payments and the payment amount (60% of total payment amount, the crop most often damaged was maize. Analysis of the data found that there was a negative growth trend of payment frequency and total payment amount for grape vineyards. The correlation between yearly number of payments and yearly production was not calculated for any crop. The high seasonal nature of payments was a determent of seasonal regression using a dummy variable regression (r2=0.93. A comparison of the monthly number of payments and monthly amounts is depicted by a time series using a seasonal line. The impact of wild boar damage on agriculture crops, in total, leads to the conclusion that this game species is a major problem. The results showed a specific subset of game damage in Croatia and, as such, it can be extrapolated to provide insight into the damage caused by wild boar in other countries.

  11. Prediction of Potato Crop Yield Using Precision Agriculture Techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Gaadi, Khalid A; Hassaballa, Abdalhaleem A; Tola, ElKamil; Kayad, Ahmed G; Madugundu, Rangaswamy; Alblewi, Bander; Assiri, Fahad

    2016-01-01

    Crop growth and yield monitoring over agricultural fields is an essential procedure for food security and agricultural economic return prediction. The advances in remote sensing have enhanced the process of monitoring the development of agricultural crops and estimating their yields. Therefore, remote sensing and GIS techniques were employed, in this study, to predict potato tuber crop yield on three 30 ha center pivot irrigated fields in an agricultural scheme located in the Eastern Region of Saudi Arabia. Landsat-8 and Sentinel-2 satellite images were acquired during the potato growth stages and two vegetation indices (the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and the soil adjusted vegetation index (SAVI)) were generated from the images. Vegetation index maps were developed and classified into zones based on vegetation health statements, where the stratified random sampling points were accordingly initiated. Potato yield samples were collected 2-3 days prior to the harvest time and were correlated to the adjacent NDVI and SAVI, where yield prediction algorithms were developed and used to generate prediction yield maps. Results of the study revealed that the difference between predicted yield values and actual ones (prediction error) ranged between 7.9 and 13.5% for Landsat-8 images and between 3.8 and 10.2% for Sentinel-2 images. The relationship between actual and predicted yield values produced R2 values ranging between 0.39 and 0.65 for Landsat-8 images and between 0.47 and 0.65 for Sentinel-2 images. Results of this study revealed a considerable variation in field productivity across the three fields, where high-yield areas produced an average yield of above 40 t ha-1; while, the low-yield areas produced, on the average, less than 21 t ha-1. Identifying such great variation in field productivity will assist farmers and decision makers in managing their practices. PMID:27611577

  12. Exploring Alternative Solutions Regarding Conservation Agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Reza Movahedi; Hadi Fathi; Mousa Aazami; Somaye Latifi

    2011-01-01

    Problem statement: Studies show that no effective measures have been taken towards conservative agriculture in Iran. Social, economical and technical agricultural factors and conditions need to be provided to meet conservation agriculture at the farm, regional and national level. Accordingly, this research aimed at exploring some solutions to protect and conserve agriculture. Approach: To achieve this, of all 100 populations, included both 80 faculty members of college of agriculture at Bu-Al...

  13. Agricultural diversification: the potential for underutilised crops in Africa's changing climates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azam-Ali, Sayed

    2007-01-01

    Two of the greatest challenges currently facing humanity are the potential consequences of climate change and the actual consequences of reduced agricultural diversity. This paper considers the consequences of both climate change and reduced agricultural diversity on global food security and nutrition. The inextricable link between climate change and crop diversity is examined, particularly in the context of crop production in Africa where most agricultural diversity exists and where climate change will have most impact. The Green Revolution, often seen as a model for increasing global agricultural productivity, is reconsidered in terms of its failure to make a significant impact in hostile tropical environments such as those of much of Africa. An alternative or, at least, a complementary strategy, is advocated where we might better harness the huge repository of indigenous plant species cultivated and conserved by local communities for many generations across variable climates. An example is given of multidisciplinary research on bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranea), an ancient grain legume grown, cooked, processed and traded mainly by subsistence women farmers in sub-Saharan Africa. The experience gained on bambara groundnut is considered as a basis for similar efforts on many other potentially useful underutilised food crops in the climates of the future. PMID:17592817

  14. Contribution to the microeconomics of fuel alcohol from agricultural crops

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koegl, H.

    1984-01-01

    A comprehensive evaluation of the economic viability of renewable resources presumes that at first micro- and macroeconomic aspects have been analysed. For this purpose the paper deals from a microeconomic point of view with one aspect that is the economics of supply of fuel alcohol. For those crops, which are currently of interest, the costs of production and conversion and the revenues from by-products are investigated. As the results suggest, the economics of supply are mostly affected by the following facts: at the crop production stage: output per unit of area, production management, utilization of crop by-products; at the plant stage: plant design, use of plant capacity, scale effects; at the stage of waste disposal: type of crop, type of processing, utilization. The partial economic analysis indicates that the minimum prices of ethanol are in the range from 1.06 to 1.38 DM per litre. This is higher than the prices of fossil fuel and ethylene. In the long run the competitiveness of renewable resources will depend on the change in price relations between agricultural raw materials and fossil energy, substitution possibilities and on the rate of technical progress. But already now another assessment of the competitiveness of renewable resources might be possible if the overall economic efficient use of renewable resources has been investigated.

  15. EUE (energy use efficiency) of cropping systems for a sustainable agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Energy efficiency of agriculture needs improvement to reduce the dependency on non-renewable energy sources. We estimated the energy flows of a wheat-maize-soybean-maize rotation of three different cropping systems: (i) low-input integrated farming (LI), (ii) integrated farming following European Regulations (IFS), and (iii) conventional farming (CONV). Balancing N fertilization with actual crop requirements and adopting minimum tillage proved the most efficient techniques to reduce energy inputs, contributing 64.7% and 11.2% respectively to the total reduction. Large differences among crops in energy efficiency (maize: 2.2 MJ kg-1 grain; wheat: 2.6 MJ kg-1 grain; soybean: 4.1 MJ kg-1 grain) suggest that crop rotation and crop management can be equally important in determining cropping system energy efficiency. Integrated farming techniques improved energy efficiency by reducing energy inputs without affecting energy outputs. Compared with CONV, energy use efficiency increased 31.4% and 32.7% in IFS and LI, respectively, while obtaining similar net energy values. Including SOM evolution in the energy analysis greatly enhanced the energy performance of IFS and, even more dramatically, LI compared to CONV. Improved energy efficiency suggests the adoption of alternative farming systems to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture. However, a thorough evaluation should include net global warming potential assessment. -- Highlights: → We evaluated the energy flows of integrated as alternative to conventional Farming. → Energy flows, soil organic matter evolution included, were analyzed following process analysis. → Energy flows were compared using indicators. → Integrated farming improved energy efficiency without affecting net energy. → Inclusion of soil organic matter in energy analysis accrue environmental evaluation.

  16. Crop improvement through mutation techniques in Chinese agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Induced mutations for crop improvement is the most developed field in China's nuclear-agricultural sciences. It is well known that China has supported 22% of the world's population with only 7% of its cultivated land. The continued rise in population stresses the importance of increasing food production. Although developing crop varieties is efficient in increasing food production, plant breeders are approaching the outer limits of existing and useful genetic variability. As nuclear techniques provide an efficient route to inducing genetic mutations, more and more efforts have been focused on induced genetic variability. Induced mutations have become an effective way of improving cultivars and supplementing existing germplasm. Since 1981 two nationwide co-operation programs for mutation breeding, organized by the IAEA, have been carried out. 3 tabs

  17. Exploring Alternative Solutions Regarding Conservation Agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reza Movahedi

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: Studies show that no effective measures have been taken towards conservative agriculture in Iran. Social, economical and technical agricultural factors and conditions need to be provided to meet conservation agriculture at the farm, regional and national level. Accordingly, this research aimed at exploring some solutions to protect and conserve agriculture. Approach: To achieve this, of all 100 populations, included both 80 faculty members of college of agriculture at Bu-Ali-Sina University and 20 subject matter specialists in Hamedan's State Agricultural Organization, 35 people were selected based on the criterion type of purposeful sampling. Data were gathered through interviews. Content analysis method was used to analyze textual data. Results: Results of this study showed that the building awareness and culture along with factors such as proper conservation agriculture practices, effective planning and management and attention to agro-ecological issues are basic factors to promote conservation agriculture in the surveyed area. Conclusions/Recommendations: Lack of awareness and knowledge of farmers and people towards conservation agriculture, no adoption of conservation agriculture by farmers and lack of education and training services for conservation agriculture were the most important issues that found in this research about conservation agriculture. Therefore, support the creating of cooperatives to provide necessary services for implementing conservation agriculture practices is definitely recommended.

  18. Wild chimpanzees show group differences in selection of agricultural crops

    OpenAIRE

    McLennan, Matthew R.; Hockings, Kimberley J.

    2014-01-01

    The ability of wild animals to respond flexibly to anthropogenic environmental changes, including agriculture, is critical to survival in human-impacted habitats. Understanding use of human foods by wildlife can shed light on the acquisition of novel feeding habits and how animals respond to human-driven land-use changes. Little attention has focused on within-species variation in use of human foods or its causes. We examined crop-feeding in two groups of wild chimpanzees – a specialist frugi...

  19. Simulated multipolarized MAPSAR images to distinguish agricultural crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wagner Fernando Silva

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Many researchers have shown the potential of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR images for agricultural applications, particularly for monitoring regions with limitations in terms of acquiring cloud free optical images. Recently, Brazil and Germany began a feasibility study on the construction of an orbital L-band SAR sensor referred to as MAPSAR (Multi-Application Purpose SAR. This sensor provides L-band images in three spatial resolutions and polarimetric, interferometric and stereoscopic capabilities. Thus, studies are needed to evaluate the potential of future MAPSAR images. The objective of this study was to evaluate multipolarized MAPSAR images simulated by the airborne SAR-R99B sensor to distinguish coffee, cotton and pasture fields in Brazil. Discrimination among crops was evaluated through graphical and cluster analysis of mean backscatter values, considering single, dual and triple polarizations. Planting row direction of coffee influenced the backscatter and was divided into two classes: parallel and perpendicular to the sensor look direction. Single polarizations had poor ability to discriminate the crops. The overall accuracies were less than 59 %, but the understanding of the microwave interaction with the crops could be explored. Combinations of two polarizations could differentiate various fields of crops, highlighting the combination VV-HV that reached 78 % overall accuracy. The use of three polarizations resulted in 85.4 % overall accuracy, indicating that the classes pasture and parallel coffee were fully discriminated from the other classes. These results confirmed the potential of multipolarized MAPSAR images to distinguish the studied crops and showed considerable improvement in the accuracy of the results when the number of polarizations was increased.

  20. The forecast of agricultural crop production contamination by Cs 137

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The saved up experimental data on the influence of various factors on radionuclides transition in plants allows predicting their contents in production of agricultural crops. It is established, that receipt radionuclides in plants depends on a kind and a grade of cultivated cultures, types of ground, granulometric structure, parameters of soil fertility, humidifying grounds, levels of application of mineral fertilizers and other factors. The determining factor on Cs 137 receipt in plants is presented in ground exchange potassium. The forecast of Cs 137 transition from ground in plants is widely used in an agricultural production at planning and realization of a complex of protective actions. According to predicted levels of Cs 137 accumulation in production the directions of its use are determined. (authors)

  1. Iodine transfer from agricultural soils to edible part of crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Information about the distribution and cycling of stable iodine (I) in the environment is useful for dose estimation from its long-lived radioiodisotope, 129I, which is one of the most critical radionuclides to be managed for the safe disposal of nuclear fuel waste. The soil-to-plant transfer factor (TF) is an important parameter to predict internal radiation exposure pathways through the food chains using mathematical models. Therefore, we have measured stable I and bromine (Br) for comparison, in 142 crop samples and associated agricultural field soil samples collected throughout Japan. The crops were classified into eight groups, i.e. leafy vegetables, white part of leeks, fruit vegetables, tubers, root crops, legumes, wheat and barley (WB), and rice. The results showed that Br and I concentrations were higher in upland field soil samples than in paddy field soil samples. However, when we compared TF values of WB and brown rice, no statistical difference was observed. The highest geometric mean of TF for I, 1.4 x 10-2, was obtained for leafy vegetables and fruit vegetables and that for Br, 1.5, was for fruit vegetables. TF for I was much lower than Br, as reported previously, maybe due to their different chemical forms in soil and uptake behaviors by plant roots. (orig.)

  2. Iodine transfer from agricultural soils to edible part of crops

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Uchida, S.; Tagami, K. [National Institute of Radiological Sciences, Chiba (Japan). Office of Biospheric Assessment for Waste Disposal

    2011-07-01

    Information about the distribution and cycling of stable iodine (I) in the environment is useful for dose estimation from its long-lived radioiodisotope, {sup 129}I, which is one of the most critical radionuclides to be managed for the safe disposal of nuclear fuel waste. The soil-to-plant transfer factor (TF) is an important parameter to predict internal radiation exposure pathways through the food chains using mathematical models. Therefore, we have measured stable I and bromine (Br) for comparison, in 142 crop samples and associated agricultural field soil samples collected throughout Japan. The crops were classified into eight groups, i.e. leafy vegetables, white part of leeks, fruit vegetables, tubers, root crops, legumes, wheat and barley (WB), and rice. The results showed that Br and I concentrations were higher in upland field soil samples than in paddy field soil samples. However, when we compared TF values of WB and brown rice, no statistical difference was observed. The highest geometric mean of TF for I, 1.4 x 10{sup -2}, was obtained for leafy vegetables and fruit vegetables and that for Br, 1.5, was for fruit vegetables. TF for I was much lower than Br, as reported previously, maybe due to their different chemical forms in soil and uptake behaviors by plant roots. (orig.)

  3. Drought Effects on Agricultural Yield: Comparison Across Regions and Crop Types

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daryanto, S.; Wang, L.; Jacinthe, P. A.

    2014-12-01

    Global agricultural production is dominated by rainfed agriculture, and is therefore prone to disruption from climate extreme weathers. These uncertainties become more problematic when considering the projection of increased drought frequency suggested by several climate models for various world regions. Curiously, few regional analyses of drought impact of food production have been attempted. We collated and analyzed data from the last 25 years to disentangle the effects of drought (i.e. timing, intensity and duration) on agricultural production in different eco-regions and with varying crop types. Our preliminary results suggested greater yield reduction in annual (-21.5%) than perennial plants (-16%), in C4 (-21%) compared to C3 crops (-17%), and when drought occurred during generative (i.e. flowering until maturity; -16.5%) than vegetative stage (-15.5%). Although drought caused similar amounts of yield reduction in both tropical and subtropical regions (i.e. -17%), it carries a greater food security risk in the tropics due to inherently low productivity (i.e. less than half than in the subtropical regions). Consequently, cultivating drought-resistant C3 perennial plants (e.g. sweet potato and cassava) in the tropics could prove a viable adaptive strategy to mitigate the effects of climate variability. In addition, these crops have limited input requirements, are well adapted to nutrient-poor Oxisols and Ultisols of the tropics, and generally outyield cereal crops in the region. Our analysis is ongoing and needs to take into account agronomic traits (e.g. water requirement), as well as the energy and nutritional values (e.g. protein, minerals) of alternative crops. Our results could inform the selection and development of new cultivars for the drought-prone regions of the world.

  4. Development of an unmanned agricultural robotics system for measuring crop conditions for precision aerial application

    Science.gov (United States)

    An Unmanned Agricultural Robotics System (UARS) is acquired, rebuilt with desired hardware, and operated in both classrooms and field. The UARS includes crop height sensor, crop canopy analyzer, normalized difference vegetative index (NDVI) sensor, multispectral camera, and hyperspectral radiometer...

  5. The Impact of Climate Change on Major Agricultural Crops: Evidence from Punjab, Pakistan

    OpenAIRE

    Rehana Siddiqui; Ghulam Samad; Muhammad Nasir; Hafiz Hanzla Jalil

    2012-01-01

    This study is underscoring the impact of climate change on the major agricultural crops in Punjab, Pakistan. These crops are Wheat, Rice, Cotton and Sugarcane. This is the first study of its nature to study the impact of scientific information’s on the stages of development of each crop in order to assess the impact of climate change on each stage of the crops. This detail scientific information’s obtained from Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC), Islamabad, Cotton Research Institut...

  6. Winter Wheat Row Spacing and Alternative Crop Effects on Relay-Intercrop, Double-Crop, and Wheat Yields

    OpenAIRE

    Leah Sandler; Kelly A. Nelson; Christopher Dudenhoeffer

    2015-01-01

    In Missouri as well as much of the Midwest, the most popular double-cropping system was winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) followed by soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr). These two crops can also be used in an intercrop system, but optimal row spacing was important to increase crop productivity. Research was conducted to evaluate (1) winter wheat inter- and double-crop production systems, using a variety of alternative crops, and (2) the impact of different wheat row spacings on intercrop estab...

  7. Conservation agriculture cropping systems in temperate and tropical conditions, performances and impacts . A review

    OpenAIRE

    Triomphe, Bernard; Affholder, François; Da Silva, Fernando Antonio Macena; Corbeels, Marc; Xavier, José Humberto Valadares; Lahmar, Rabah; Recous, Sylvie; BERNOUX, MARTIAL,; Blanchart, Eric; Mendes, Ieda de Carvalho; de Tourdonnet, Stephane

    2013-01-01

    Nowadays, in a context of climate change, economical uncertainties and social pressure to mitigate agriculture externalities, farmers have to adopt new cropping systems to achieve a sustainable and cost-effective grain production. Conservation agriculture consists of a range of cropping systems based on a combination of three main principles: (1) soil tillage reduction, (2) soil protection by organic residues and (3) diversification in crop rotation. Conservation agriculture has been promoted...

  8. Modeling the impact of conservation agriculture on crop production and soil properties in Mediterranean climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moussadek, Rachid; Mrabet, Rachid; Dahan, Rachid; Laghrour, Malika; Lembiad, Ibtissam; ElMourid, Mohamed

    2015-04-01

    In Morocco, rainfed agriculture is practiced in the majority of agricultural land. However, the intensive land use coupled to the irregular rainfall constitutes a serious threat that affect country's food security. Conservation agriculture (CA) represents a promising alternative to produce more and sustainably. In fact, the direct seeding showed high yield in arid regions of Morocco but its extending to other more humid agro-ecological zones (rainfall > 350mm) remains scarce. In order to promote CA in Morocco, differents trials have been installed in central plateau of Morocco, to compare CA to conventional tillage (CT). The yields of the main practiced crops (wheat, lentil and checkpea) under CA and CT were analyzed and compared in the 3 soils types (Vertisol, Cambisol and Calcisol). Also, we studied the effect of CA on soil organic matter (SOM) and soil losses (SL) in the 3 different sites. The APSIM model was used to model the long term impact of CA compared to CT. The results obtained in this research have shown favorable effects of CA on crop production, SOM and soil erosion. Key words: Conservation agriculture, yield, soil properties, modeling, APSIM, Morocco.

  9. Effects of Interannual Climate Variability in Secondary Forests and Crops Under Traditional and Alternative Shifting Cultivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sa, T. D.; Guild, L. S.; Carvalho, C. J.; Potter, C. S.; Wickel, A. J.; Brienza, S.; Kato, M. A.; Kato, O.

    2002-12-01

    Regenerating forests play an important role in long-term carbon sequestration and sustainable landuse as they act as potentially important carbon and nutrient sinks during the shifting agriculture fallow period. The long-term functioning of secondary forests (capoeira) is increasingly threatened by a shortening fallow period during shifting cultivation due to demographic pressures and associated increased vulnerability to severe climatic events. Declining productivity and functioning of fallow forests of shifting cultivation combined with progressive loss of nutrients by successive burning and cropping activities has resulted in declining agricultural productivity. In addition to the effects of intense land use practices, droughts associated with El Ni¤o events are becoming more frequent and severe in moist tropical forests and negative effects on capoeira productivity could be considerable. In Igarape-Acu (near Belem, Para), we hypothesize that experimental alternative landuse/clearing practices (mulching and fallow vegetation improvement by planting with fast-growing leguminous tree species) may make capoeira and crops more resilient to the effects of agricultural pressures and drought through 1) increased biomass, soil organic matter and associated increase in soil water storage, and nutrient retention and 2) greater rooting depth of trees planted for fallow improvement. This experimental practice (mechanized chop-and-mulch with fallow improvement) has resulted in increased soil moisture during the cropping phase, reduced loss of nutrients and organic matter, and higher rates of secondary-forest biomass accumulation. We present preliminary data on water relations during the dry season of 2001 in capoeira and crops for both traditional slash-and-burn and alternative chop-and-mulch practices. These data will be used to test IKONOS data for the detection of moisture status differences. The principal goal of the research is to determine the extent to which capoeira

  10. UTILIZATION OF ROOT-COLONIZING FUNGI FOR IMPROVED PERFORMANCE OF AGRICULTURAL CROPS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JOY MICHAL JOHNSON

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Soil is a non-renewable natural resource which forms all ecosystems on the earth and provides the basis for food production for heterotrophic organisms, including men. The increase in the world population requires also an increase in agricultural production which was and is mainly achieved by massive use of mineral nutrients. However, the experience of the last century has demonstrated that the high mineral input has severe consequences for the ecosystems. An alternative more environmentally friendly strategy for agricultural production is provided by the nature itself: Beneficial root-colonizing fungi and bacteria have tremendous impact on the performance of agricultural plants (crops. Understanding of these symbioses requires knowledge about the communication between the partners. The microbes often release bioactive compounds into the rhizosphere which activate signaling or transport processes and thus promote plant performance. A general new concept for fertilizers in the agriculture could be to utilize microbe-derived bio-effectors in combination with appropriate nutrient supplies to promote biomass and yield production of agricultural plants while simultaneously reducing the input of agrochemicals. Here, we describe some concepts for the identification and utilization of microbial preparations and microbe-derived bio-effectors for the improvement of the performance of agricultural plants, using the root-colonizing endophytic fungus Piriformospora indica.

  11. Complex media from processing of agricultural crops for microbial fermentation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, M.H.

    2005-01-01

    converted to a basic, universal fermentation medium by lactic acid fermentation, is outlined. The resulting all-round fermentation medium can be used for the production of many useful fermentation products when added a carbohydrate source, which could possibly be another agricultural by-product. Two...... examples of such products-polylactic acid and L-lysine-are given. A cost calculation shows that this fermentation medium can be produced at a very low cost approximate to 1.7 Euro cent/kg, when taking into account that the green crop industry has expenses amounting to 270,000 Euro/year for disposal of the...... brown juice. A newly built lysine factory in Esbjerg, Denmark, can benefit from this process by buying a low price medium for the fermentation process instead of more expensive traditional fermentation liquids such as corn steep liquor....

  12. Simulating greenhouse gas budgets of four California cropping systems under conventional and alternative management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Gryze, Steven; Wolf, Adam; Kaffka, Stephen R; Mitchell, Jeff; Rolston, Dennis E; Temple, Steven R; Lee, Juhwan; Six, Johan

    2010-10-01

    Despite the importance of agriculture in California's Central Valley, the potential of alternative management practices to reduce soil greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions has been poorly studied in California. This study aims at (1) calibrating and validating DAYCENT, an ecosystem model, for conventional and alternative cropping systems in California's Central Valley, (2) estimating CO2, N2O, and CH4 soil fluxes from these systems, and (3) quantifying the uncertainty around model predictions induced by variability in the input data. The alternative practices considered were cover cropping, organic practices, and conservation tillage. These practices were compared with conventional agricultural management. The crops considered were beans, corn, cotton, safflower, sunflower, tomato, and wheat. Four field sites, for which at least five years of measured data were available, were used to calibrate and validate the DAYCENT model. The model was able to predict 86-94% of the measured variation in crop yields and 69-87% of the measured variation in soil organic carbon (SOC) contents. A Monte Carlo analysis showed that the predicted variability of SOC contents, crop yields, and N2O fluxes was generally smaller than the measured variability of these parameters, in particular for N2O fluxes. Conservation tillage had the smallest potential to reduce GHG emissions among the alternative practices evaluated, with a significant reduction of the net soil GHG fluxes in two of the three sites of 336 +/- 47 and 550 +/- 123 kg CO2-eq x ha(-1) x yr(-1) (mean +/- SE). Cover cropping had a larger potential, with net soil GHG flux reductions of 752 +/- 10, 1072 +/- 272, and 2201 +/- 82 kg CO2-eq x ha(-1) x yr(-1). Organic practices had the greatest potential for soil GHG flux reduction, with 4577 +/- 272 kg CO2-eq x ha(-1) x yr(-1). Annual differences in weather or management conditions contributed more to the variance in annual GHG emissions than soil variability did. We concluded that the

  13. From alternative Agriculture to the Food Industry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Thorkild; Kristensen, Niels Heine

    1997-01-01

    organic agriculture over the last decade.Organic food production is now developing fast in some EU member states. This recent development is not only marked by more positive attitudes towards organic products from the food industry but also by an increasing need for a matching response in terms of food...... policy. Relevance: The EU regulation 2092/91/EEC is mainly focused on organic agriculture, but as the food industryenters this field the need emerges for a more specific interpretation, development and implementation of the organic principles and methods in processing, handling and distribution. Whether...

  14. Tree Crops, a Permanent Agriculture: Concepts from the Past for a Sustainable Future

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Reed Funk

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available J. Russell Smith (1874–1966, a professor of geography at Columbia University, witnessed the devastation of soil erosion during his extensive travels. He first published his landmark text, Tree Crops, A Permanent Agriculture in 1929, in which he described the value of tree crops for producing food and animal feed on sloping, marginal, and rocky soils as a sustainable alternative to annual crop agriculture less suited to these lands. A cornerstone of his thesis was using wide germplasm collection and plant breeding to improve this largely underutilized and genetically unexploited group of plants to develop locally adapted, high-yielding cultivars for the many climatic zones of North America. Smith proposed an establishment of “Institutes of Mountain Agriculture” to undertake this work. For a variety of reasons, though, his ideas were not implemented to any great degree. However, our growing population’s increasing demands on natural resources and the associated environmental degradation necessitate that Smith’s ideas be revisited. In this review, his concepts, supported by modern scientific understanding and advances, are discussed and expanded upon to emphasize their largely overlooked potential to enhance world food and energy security and environmental sustainability. The discussion leads us to propose that his “institutes” be established worldwide and with an expanded scope of work.

  15. Investigating Impacts of Alternative Crop Market Scenarios on Land Use Change with an Agent-Based Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deng Ding

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available We developed an agent-based model (ABM to simulate farmers’ decisions on crop type and fertilizer application in response to commodity and biofuel crop prices. Farm profit maximization constrained by farmers’ profit expectations for land committed to biofuel crop production was used as the decision rule. Empirical parameters characterizing farmers’ profit expectations were derived from an agricultural landowners and operators survey and integrated in the ABM. The integration of crop production cost models and the survey information in the ABM is critical to producing simulations that can provide realistic insights into agricultural land use planning and policy making. Model simulations were run with historical market prices and alternative market scenarios for corn price, soybean to corn price ratio, switchgrass price, and switchgrass to corn stover ratio. The results of the comparison between simulated cropland percentage and crop rotations with satellite-based land cover data suggest that farmers may be underestimating the effects that continuous corn production has on yields. The simulation results for alternative market scenarios based on a survey of agricultural land owners and operators in the Clear Creek Watershed in eastern Iowa show that farmers see cellulosic biofuel feedstock production in the form of perennial grasses or corn stover as a more risky enterprise than their current crop production systems, likely because of market and production risks and lock in effects. As a result farmers do not follow a simple farm-profit maximization rule.

  16. An overview of crop growing condition monitoring in China agriculture remote sensing monitoring system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Qing; Zhou, Qing-bo; Zhang, Li

    2009-07-01

    China is a large agricultural country. To understand the agricultural production condition timely and accurately is related to government decision-making, agricultural production management and the general public concern. China Agriculture Remote Sensing Monitoring System (CHARMS) can monitor crop acreage changes, crop growing condition, agriculture disaster (drought, floods, frost damage, pest etc.) and predict crop yield etc. quickly and timely. The basic principles, methods and regular operation of crop growing condition monitoring in CHARMS are introduced in detail in the paper. CHARMS can monitor crop growing condition of wheat, corn, cotton, soybean and paddy rice with MODIS data. An improved NDVI difference model was used in crop growing condition monitoring in CHARMS. Firstly, MODIS data of every day were received and processed, and the max NDVI values of every fifteen days of main crop were generated, then, in order to assessment a certain crop growing condition in certain period (every fifteen days, mostly), the system compare the remote sensing index data (NDVI) of a certain period with the data of the period in the history (last five year, mostly), the difference between NDVI can indicate the spatial difference of crop growing condition at a certain period. Moreover, Meteorological data of temperature, precipitation and sunshine etc. as well as the field investigation data of 200 network counties were used to modify the models parameters. Last, crop growing condition was assessment at four different scales of counties, provinces, main producing areas and nation and spatial distribution maps of crop growing condition were also created.

  17. Modelling robust crop production portfolios to assess agricultural vulnerability to climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Mitter, Hermine; Heumesser, Christine; Schmid, Erwin

    2014-01-01

    Agricultural vulnerability is assessed by (i) modelling climate change impacts on crop yields and gross margins, (ii) identifying crop production portfolios for adaptation, and (iii) analyzing the effect of agricultural policies and risk aversion on adaptive capacity. We combine, spatially explicit, a statistical climate change model, the bio-physical process model EPIC and a portfolio optimization model. Under climate change, optimal portfolios include higher shares of intensive crop managem...

  18. Magnetopriming - an alternate strategy for crop stress management of field crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abiotic stresses are major deterrent to sustainable crop production worldwide. Seed germination and early seedling growth are considered as the most critical stages of plant growth under stress conditions. Maximising stress tolerance of crop species by breeding is an integral part of development of strategies for improving sustainable food production under stressed environment but the unprecedented rate at which stress is increasing vis-a-vis the time taken for development of a tolerant variety, necessitates exploring alternate strategies of crop stress management. Seed priming has emerged as a promising crop stress management technique that increases the speed of germination thus ensuring synchronized field emergence of the crop. Magnetopriming (exposure of seeds to magnetic field) is a non invasive physical stimulant used for improving seedling vigour that helps in establishment of crop stand under stress. In our experiments on maize; chickpea and wheat under water deficit and salinity, respectively, improved seed water absorption characteristics resulted in faster hydration of enzymes (amylases, protease and dehydrogenase) leading to early germination and enhanced vigour of seedlings under stress. Increased levels of hydrogen peroxide in faster germinating - magnetoprimed seeds, under both the growing conditions, suggested its role in oxidative signaling during seed germination process. An 'oxidative window' for reactive oxygen species ensured that faster germination rate in magnetoprimed seeds led to vigourous seedlings. Improved root system integrated with higher photosynthetic efficiency and efficient partitioning of Na+ increased yield from magnetoprimed seeds under salinity in controlled experiments. Magnetopriming can be effectively used as a pre-sowing treatment for mitigating adverse effects of water deficit and salinity at seed germination and early seedling growth. Unlike other conventional priming techniques it avoids seed hydration and

  19. Assessment of alternative water management options for irrigated agriculture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jhorar, R.K.; Smit, A.A.M.F.R.; Roest, C.W.J.

    2009-01-01

    A simulation study on alternative water management strategies was carried out for Sirsa Irrigation Circle in Haryana, covering an area of about 4800 km(2). Results showed that crop evapotranspiration and soil salinity development under reduction in canal water supply and increase in groundwater use,

  20. Comparison of soil microbial respiration and carbon turnover under perennial and annual biofuel crops in two agricultural soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szymanski, L. M.; Marin-Spiotta, E.; Sanford, G. R.; Jackson, R. D.; Heckman, K. A.

    2015-12-01

    Bioenergy crops have the potential to provide a low carbon-intensive alternative to fossil fuels. More than a century of agricultural research has shown that conventional cropping systems can reduce soil organic matter (SOM) reservoirs, which cause long-term soil nutrient loss and C release to the atmosphere. In the face of climate change and other human disruptions to biogeochemical cycles, identifying biofuel crops that can maintain or enhance soil resources is desirable for the sustainable production of bioenergy. The objective of our study was to compare the effects of four biofuel crop treatments on SOM dynamics in two agricultural soils: Mollisols at Arlington Agricultural Research Station in Wisconsin and Alfisols at Kellogg Biological Station in Michigan, USA. We used fresh soils collected in 2013 and archived soils from 2008 to measure the effects of five years of crop management. Using a one-year long laboratory soil incubation coupled with a regression model and radiocarbon measurements, we separated soils into three SOM pools and their corresponding C turnover times. We found that the active pool, or biologically available C, was more sensitive to management and is an earlier indicator of changes to soil C dynamics than bulk soil C measurements. There was no effect of treatment on the active pool size at either site; however, the percent C in the active pool decreased, regardless of crop type, in surface soils with high clay content. At depth, the response of the slow pool differed between annual and perennial cropping systems. The distribution of C among SOM fractions varied between the two soil types, with greater C content associated with the active fraction in the coarser textured-soil and greater C content associated with the slow-cycling fraction in the soils with high clay content. These results suggest that the effects of bioenergy crops on soil resources will vary geographically, with implications for the carbon-cost of biocrop production.

  1. Jacobo-Velázquez, D.A and Cisneros-Zevallos, L. An Alternative Use of Horticultural Crops: Stressed Plants as Biofactories of Bioactive Phenolic Compounds. Agriculture 2012, 2, 259-271

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Cisneros-Zevallos

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The authors are sorry to report that some data in the text (Section 2, Section 2.1.1. and Section 2.1.2 and Table 1 were incorrect in reference [1], doi: 10.3390/agriculture2030259, website: http://www.mdpi.com/2077-0472/2/3/259. Our mistake was basically in the calculations of changes observed in the reported values in those references; unfortunately we did not detect the errors at the time of publication. However, since we saw them afterwards, we believed it was pertinent to make the corrections. The authors would, therefore, like to make the following corrections to the paper:

  2. The Impacts of Agricultural Machinery Purchase Subsidies on Mechanized Crop Residue Recycling

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2011-01-01

    Crop residue recycling can improve the quality of the cropland,and it has multiple economic and ecological benefits.However,such practice is with low adoption due to different constraints.In this paper,we use the survey data from Baoding,Hebei province,and use the probit model to explore how the agricultural machinery purchase subsidies affect the mechanized crop residue recycling.The results showed that several factors that affect farmers in adopting the practice of mechanized crop residue crop recycling.Among these factors,the cost of adopting such practice is significant.The agricultural machinery purchase subsidies can effectively reduce the cost of such practice,as well as promote mechanized crop residue recycling.The paper also proposed several actions in the future.They include increasing the subsidies on agricultural machinery purchase and increasing farmers’ awareness on crop residue recycling.

  3. Landscape-ecological limitations of intensive agricultural activity; 1 : 1 000 000; Soil suitability for cultivation of crops (typological and productivity categories of agricultural soils); 1 : 1 000 000

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    On these maps the landscape-ecological limitations of intensive agricultural activity as well as soil suitability for cultivation of crops on the territory of the Slovak Republic are shown. Suitability of soils for crop growing is expressed by the set of four production types (potential arable land, alternating fields, permanent grassland, and territories not suitable for agro-ecosystems) and eleven sustainable use subtypes of production potential of agricultural soils ranging from the most productive arable land to the territories not suitable for growing of agricultural crops. They were defined on the basis of assessment of the relationships between the properties, point value of production capacity of agricultural land, and their suitability for crop growing. (authors)

  4. Attitudes of Agricultural Experts Toward Genetically Modified Crops: A Case Study in Southwest Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghanian, Mansour; Ghoochani, Omid M; Kitterlin, Miranda; Jahangiry, Sheida; Zarafshani, Kiumars; Van Passel, Steven; Azadi, Hossein

    2016-04-01

    The production of genetically modified (GM) crops is growing around the world, and with it possible opportunities to combat food insecurity and hunger, as well as solutions to current problems facing conventional agriculture. In this regard the use of GMOs in food and agricultural applications has increased greatly over the past decade. However, the development of GM crops has been a matter of considerable interest and worldwide public controversy. This, in addition to skepticism, has stifled the use of this practice on a large scale in many areas, including Iran. It stands to reason that a greater understanding of this practice could be formed after a review of the existing expert opinions surrounding GM crops. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to analyze the predictors that influence agricultural experts' attitudes toward the development of and policies related to GM crops. Using a descriptive correlational research method, questionnaire data was collected from 65 experts from the Agricultural Organization in the Gotvand district in Southwest Iran. Results indicated that agricultural experts were aware of the environmental benefits and possible risks associated with GM crops. The majority of participants agreed that GM crops could improve food security and accelerate rural development, and were proponents of labeling practices for GM crops. Finally, there was a positive correlation between the perception of benefits and attitudes towards GM crops. PMID:26045394

  5. Rethinking the Risk Management Process for Genetically Engineered Crop Varieties in Small-scale, Traditionally Based Agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Soleri

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Proponents of genetically engineered (GE crops often assume that the risk management used in the industrial world is appropriate for small-scale, traditionally based agriculture in the Third World. Opponents of GE crops often assume that risk management is inappropriate for the Third World, because it is inherently biased in favor of the industrial world. We examine both of these assumptions, by rethinking risk management for GE crops and transgenes, using the example of maize transgene flow from the U.S. to Mexico. Risk management for the Third World is a necessary first step of a broader benefit–cost analysis of GE crops, which would include comparisons with existing varieties and with alternative varieties such as transgenic farmer varieties and organic varieties. Our goal is to use existing information on GE crops and on the social and biological characteristics of Third World agriculture to identify key processes that need to be considered in risk management, and the additional research required to adequately understand them. The four main steps in risk management are hazard identification, risk analysis (exposure x harm, risk evaluation, and risk treatment. We use informal event trees to identify possible exposure to GE crops and transgenes, and resulting biological and social harm; give examples of farmers' ability to evaluate social harm; and discuss the possibilities for risk treatment. We conclude that risk management is relevant for Third World agriculture, but needs to be based on the unique biological and social characteristics of small-scale, traditionally based agriculture, including the knowledge and values of Third World farmers and consumers.

  6. Effects of agricultural practices of three crops on the soil communities under Mediterranean conditions: field evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leitão, Sara; José Cerejeira, Maria; Abreu, Manuela; Sousa, José Paulo

    2014-05-01

    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

  7. Winter Wheat Row Spacing and Alternative Crop Effects on Relay-Intercrop, Double-Crop, and Wheat Yields

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leah Sandler

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In Missouri as well as much of the Midwest, the most popular double-cropping system was winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L. followed by soybean (Glycine max (L. Merr. These two crops can also be used in an intercrop system, but optimal row spacing was important to increase crop productivity. Research was conducted to evaluate (1 winter wheat inter- and double-crop production systems, using a variety of alternative crops, and (2 the impact of different wheat row spacings on intercrop establishment and yields within the various cropping systems. Field research was conducted during droughts in 2012 and 2013. Spacing of wheat rows impacted wheat yields by 150 kg ha−1, as well as yields of the alternative crops. Narrower row spacings (150 kg ha−1 and the double-crop system (575 kg ha−1 increased yield due to the lack of interference for resources with wheat in 2013. Land equivalent ratio (LER values determining productivity of intercrop systems of 19 and 38 cm row showed an advantage for alternative crops in 2013, but not 2012. This signified that farmers in Northeast Missouri could potentially boost yield potential for a given field and produce additional forage or green manure yields in a year with less severe drought.

  8. Analysis of soil and crop properties for precision agriculture for winter wheat

    OpenAIRE

    Vrindts, Els; Reyniers, Marieke; Darius, Paul; De Baerdemaeker, Jos; Gilot, Marc; Sadaoui, Youssef; Frankinet, Marc; Hanquet, Bernard; Destain, Marie-France

    2003-01-01

    In a precision farming research project financed by the Belgian Ministry of Small Trade and Agriculture, the methods of precision agriculture are tested on grain fields with a view of implementation of precision agriculture methods in Belgian field agriculture. The project encompasses methods for automatic information gathering on soil and crop and analysis of this data for management of within-field variability. Automatic information capturing is combined with traditional data sources of soi...

  9. Transgenic Crops and Sustainable Agriculture in the European Context

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponti, Luigi

    2005-01-01

    The rapid adoption of transgenic crops in the United States, Argentina, and Canada stands in strong contrast to the situation in the European Union (EU), where a de facto moratorium has been in place since 1998. This article reviews recent scientific literature relevant to the problematic introduction of transgenic crops in the EU to assess if…

  10. The Role of Crop Systems Simulation in Agriculture and Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Over the past 30 to 40 years, simulation of crop systems has advanced from a neophyte science with inadequate computing power into a robust and increasingly accepted science supported by improved software, languages, development tools, and computer capabilities. Crop system simulators contain mathe...

  11. Do Smallholder, Mixed Crop-Livestock Livelihoods Encourage Sustainable Agricultural Practices? A Meta-Analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Rudel, Thomas K.; Oh-Jung Kwon; Paul, Birthe K.; Maryline Boval; Rao, Idupulapati M.; Diana Burbano; Megan McGroddy; Amy M. Lerner; Douglas White; Mario Cuchillo; Manuel Luna; Michael Peters

    2016-01-01

    As calls for bolstering ecosystem services from croplands have grown more insistent during the past two decades, the search for ways to foster these agriculture-sustaining services has become more urgent. In this context we examine by means of a meta-analysis the argument, proposed by Robert McC. Netting, that small-scale, mixed crop-livestock farming, a common livelihood among poor rural peoples, leads to environmentally sustainable agricultural practices. As predicted, mixed crop-livestock ...

  12. TOTAL CARBON STOCK IN AGRICULTURAL SYSTEM HAVING CROP ROTATION IN TARAI REGION OF NORTHERN INDIA

    OpenAIRE

    Kavita Tariyal

    2014-01-01

    Soil organic carbon pools are important in maintaining soil productivity and influencing the CO2 loading into the atmosphere. Agricultural soils can mitigate the problem of carbon concentration increase in atmosphere if proper management practices are involved. In the present study, total carbon stock in crops and soil was analyzed for two years along with crop rotation practice to observe its impact on the carbon pool. For that two agricultural fields C12 and D7 were incorporated with differ...

  13. Large-scale trade-off between agricultural intensification and crop pollination services

    OpenAIRE

    Jono, Clémentine; Baude, Mathilde; henry, Mickaël; Julliard, Romain; Fontaine, Colin

    2014-01-01

    Unprecedented growth in human populations has required the intensification of agriculture to enhance crop productivity, but this was achieved at a major cost to biodiversity. There is abundant local-scale evidence that both pollinator diversity and pollination services decrease with increasing agricultural intensification. This raises concerns regarding food security, as two-thirds of the world’s major food crops are pollinator-dependent. Whether such local findings scale up and affect ...

  14. Attitudes of Agricultural Experts Toward Genetically Modified Crops: A Case Study in Southwest Iran

    OpenAIRE

    Ghanian, Mansour; Ghoochani, Omid M.; Kitterlin, Miranda; Jahangiry, Sheida; Zarafshani, Kiumars; Van Passel, Steven; Azadi, Hossein

    2016-01-01

    The production of genetically modified (GM) crops is growing around the world, and with it possible opportunities to combat food insecurity and hunger, as well as solutions to current problems facing conventional agriculture. In this regard the use of GMOs in food and agricultural applications has increased greatly over the past decade. However, the development of GM crops has been a matter of considerable interest and worldwide public controversy. This, in addition to skepticism, has stifled...

  15. A New Crop for Salt Affected and Dry Agricultural Areas of Turkey: Quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa Willd.)

    OpenAIRE

    Yazar, Attila; KAYA, Çiğdem İNCE

    2014-01-01

    Drought and salinity are two widespread environmental problems induced by climate change and improper applications in agriculture and have important adverse effects on agricultural production. To sustain crop production in such areas for food security, cultivating new crops that can growth under these unfavorable conditions is one of the measures. Quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa Willd.) is an annual grain plant originated from the Andean region of South America. This plant has potential to be an a...

  16. Micronutrient-efficient genotypes for crop yield and nutritional quality in sustainable agriculture. A review

    OpenAIRE

    Khoshgoftarmanesh, Amir Hossein; Schulin, Rainer; Chaney, Rufus L.; Daneshbakhsh, Bahareh; Afyuni, Majid

    2010-01-01

    About 4 billion people will be added onto the present population by 2050. To meet further demand for food, agricultural production should increase on the existing land. Since the Green Revolution, higher crop production per unit area has resulted in greater depletion of soil phytoavailable micronutrients while less attention has been paid to micronutrients fertilization. Now, micronutrient deficiency has become a limiting factor for crop productivity in many agricultural lands worldwide. Furt...

  17. Empirical Assessment of Climate Change on Major Agricultural Crops of Punjab, Pakistan

    OpenAIRE

    Afzal, Muhammad; Ahmed, Tanvir; Ahmed, Gulzar

    2016-01-01

    Global warming is exacerbating climate affect on agricultural productivity. The objective of present study is the empirical assessment of climate change on three major agricultural crops of Punjab, Pakistan. A variant of Cobb-Douglas production function is used for the panel data of the districts of Punjab covering period 1981 to 2012.Overall findings of the study reveal that temperature has positive impact on the production of wheat crops during the planting and harvesting stage. However, t...

  18. Lead and Cadmium Concentration in Agricultural Crops (Lettuce, Cabbage, Beetroot, and Onion) of Isfahan Province, Iran

    OpenAIRE

    Reza Mohajer; Mohammad Hassan Salehi; Jahangard Mohammadi

    2014-01-01

    Background and Objective: The contamination of agricultural crops with heavy metals due to soil and atmospheric contamination is a potential threat for their quality and their safety. Heavy metals such as Cd and Pb have been reported for their carcinogenic effects. The aim of this study was to investigate the lead and cadmium concentration in some of crops grown in Isfahan province, Iran. Materials and Methods: During two seasons (spring and summer), 80 samples of four different crops (20 ...

  19. Social Impacts of GM Crops in Agriculture: A Systematic Literature Review

    OpenAIRE

    Klara Fischer; Elisabeth Ekener-Petersen; Lotta Rydhmer; Karin Edvardsson Björnberg

    2015-01-01

    It has recently been argued that the fragmented knowledge on the social impacts of genetically modified (GM) crops is contributing to the polarised debate on the matter. This paper addresses this issue by systematically reviewing 99 peer-reviewed journal articles published since 2004 on the social impacts of GM crops in agriculture; summarising current knowledge, and identifying research gaps. Economic impact studies currently dominate the literature and mainly report that GM crops provide ec...

  20. Biomass and multi-product crops for agricultural and energy production - an AGE analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ignaciuk, A.; Dellink, R.B.

    2006-01-01

    By-products from agriculture and forestry can contribute to production of clean and cheap (bio)electricity. To assess the role of such multi-product crops in the response to climate policies, we present an applied general equilibrium model with special attention to biomass and multi-product crops. T

  1. Multi-Product Crops for Agricultural and Energy Production : an AGE Analysis for Poland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ignaciuk, A.; Dellink, R.B.

    2005-01-01

    By-products from agriculture and forestry can contribute to production of clean and cheap (bio)electricity. To assess the role of such multi-product crops in the response to climate policies, we present an applied general equilibrium model with special attention to biomass and multi-product crops fo

  2. The crop yield gap between organic and conventional agriculture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ponti, de T.; Rijk, H.C.A.; Ittersum, van M.K.

    2012-01-01

    A key issue in the debate on the contribution of organic agriculture to the future of world agriculture is whether organic agriculture can produce sufficient food to feed the world. Comparisons of organic and conventional yields play a central role in this debate. We therefore compiled and analyzed

  3. Investigate the Capabilities of Remotely Sensed Crop Indicators for Agricultural Drought Monitoring in Kansas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, J.; Becker-Reshef, I.; Justice, C. O.

    2013-12-01

    Although agricultural production has been rising in the past years, drought remains the primary cause of crop failure, leading to food price instability and threatening food security. The recent 'Global Food Crisis' in 2008, 2011 and 2012 has put drought and its impact on crop production at the forefront, highlighting the need for effective agricultural drought monitoring. Satellite observations have proven a practical, cost-effective and dynamic tool for drought monitoring. However, most satellite based methods are not specially developed for agriculture and their performances for agricultural drought monitoring still need further development. Wheat is the most widely grown crop in the world, and the recent droughts highlight the importance of drought monitoring in major wheat producing areas. As the largest wheat producing state in the US, Kansas plays an important role in both global and domestic wheat markets. Thus, the objective of this study is to investigate the capabilities of remotely sensed crop indicators for effective agricultural drought monitoring in Kansas wheat-grown regions using MODIS data and crop yield statistics. First, crop indicators such as NDVI, anomaly and cumulative metrics were calculated. Second, the varying impacts of agricultural drought at different stages were explored by examining the relationship between the derived indicators and yields. Also, the starting date of effective agricultural drought early detection and the key agricultural drought alert period were identified. Finally, the thresholds of these indicators for agricultural drought early warning were derived and the implications of these indicators for agricultural drought monitoring were discussed. The preliminary results indicate that drought shows significant impacts from the mid-growing-season (after Mid-April); NDVI anomaly shows effective drought early detection from Late-April, and Late-April to Early-June can be used as the key alert period for agricultural

  4. Cesium transfer to agricultural crops for three years after Chernobyl

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In 1986 about 50 farms in the fallout region were selected for sampling at fixed sites of the soil surface layer and of the grassland and grain crops to come. The aim was to cover the different soil types and the farming practices of the region during studies on the transfer levels and on the change with time in transfer of cesium to the crops. It was found that the transfer level, as expected, was much higher for the grassland than for the grain crops. However, within both groups of considerable variation in the transfer level for the same year as measured by the transfer factors has occurred. For the former crops it can be concluded that the transfer factor during year 1 depends on the interception capacity of the plant cover and on the dilution by growth i.e on soil fertility and on fertilization level. In the following years the cesium TF-value for the grass cover was reduced by a factor from 2 to about 10. The reduction rate differed above all between the organic soils and the mineral soils and should largely depend on the type of the grass cover, on the different cesium fixing capacities of the two soil groups and on the potassium fertilization level. On ploughed land the transfer by root uptake to grain crops was about one magnitude lower than the transfer to the hey crops. (orig.)

  5. BIOGAS PRODUCTION FROM CATCH CROPS:A SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURAL STRATEGY TO INCREASE BIOMASS YIELD BY CO-HARVEST OF CATCH CROPS AND STRAW

    OpenAIRE

    Molinuevo-Salces, Beatriz; Larsen, Søren U.; Ahring, Birgitte Kiær; Uellendahl, Hinrich

    2014-01-01

    Catch crop cultivation combined with its use for biogas production would increase renewable energy production in the form of methane, without interfering with the production of food and fodder crops. The low biomass yield of catch crops is the main limiting factor for using these crops as co-substrate in manure-based biogas plants and the profit obtained from the sale of biogas barely compensates for the harvest costs. A new agricultural strategy to harvest catch crops together with the resid...

  6. Net carbon balance of three full crop rotations at an agricultural site near Gebesee, Germany

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurkuck, M.; Brümmer, C.; Kolle, O.; Kutsch, W. L.; Moffat, A. M.; Mukwashi, K.; Truckenbrodt, S. C.; Herbst, M.

    2015-12-01

    Continuous eddy-covariance (EC) measurements of biosphere-atmosphere CO2 and H2O exchange have been conducted since 2001 at an agricultural site near Gebesee, Germany, thus providing one of the longest EC time series of European croplands. During the experimental period, winter wheat and winter barley were alternately planted with potatoes, sugar beet, rape, and peppermint covering three full crop rotations (2001-2004, 2005-2009, and 2010-2014). In this study, data of 14 years of net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) and evapotranspiration (E) were re-calculated. Based on these data, we present the net carbon (C) balance (net biome production, NBP) accounting for any additional C input by fertilization and C output by harvest. Further emphasis was placed on the sensitivity of water use efficiency (WUE) and E to climate and crop type. The main aim was to investigate the interannual variability in both NBP and WUE, thus disentangling the impacts of climatic conditions and land management on the net C balance as well as on WUE and E.

  7. Seasonal changes in the performance of a catch crop for mitigating diffuse agricultural pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondo, K; Inoue, K; Fujiwara, T; Yamane, S; Yasutake, D; Maeda, M; Nagare, H; Akao, S; Ohtoshi, K

    2013-01-01

    An in situ technology for mitigating diffuse agricultural pollution using catch crops was developed for simultaneously preventing nitrate groundwater pollution, reducing nitrous oxide (N2O) gas emissions, and removing salts from the topsoil. Seasonal changes in the performance of a catch crop were investigated using lysimeters in a full-scale greenhouse experiment with 50 d cultivation of dent corn. Catch crop cultivation significantly reduced the leached mineral nitrogen by 89-91% in summer, 87-89% in spring, and 61-82% in winter, and it also significantly reduced the N2O emission by 68-84% in summer. The amounts of nitrogen uptake by the catch crop were remarkably higher than those of leached nitrogen and N2O emission in each season. Catch crop cultivation is a promising technology for mitigating diffuse agricultural pollution. PMID:23985506

  8. Do Smallholder, Mixed Crop-Livestock Livelihoods Encourage Sustainable Agricultural Practices? A Meta-Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas K. Rudel

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available As calls for bolstering ecosystem services from croplands have grown more insistent during the past two decades, the search for ways to foster these agriculture-sustaining services has become more urgent. In this context we examine by means of a meta-analysis the argument, proposed by Robert McC. Netting, that small-scale, mixed crop-livestock farming, a common livelihood among poor rural peoples, leads to environmentally sustainable agricultural practices. As predicted, mixed crop-livestock farms exhibit more sustainable practices, but, contrary to predictions, a small scale of operation does not predict sustainability. Many smallholders on mixed crop-livestock farms use sustainable practices, but other smallholders practice a degrading, input-scarce agriculture. Some large farm operators use soil-conserving, minimum-tillage techniques while other large operators ignore soil-conserving techniques and practice an industrialized, high chemical input agriculture. The strength and pervasiveness of the link in the data between mixed crop-livestock farming and sustainable agricultural practices argues for agricultural policies that promote mixed crop-livestock livelihoods.

  9. Contribution of insect pollinators to crop yield and quality varies with agricultural intensification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ignasi Bartomeus

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Background. Up to 75% of crop species benefit at least to some degree from animal pollination for fruit or seed set and yield. However, basic information on the level of pollinator dependence and pollinator contribution to yield is lacking for many crops. Even less is known about how insect pollination affects crop quality. Given that habitat loss and agricultural intensification are known to decrease pollinator richness and abundance, there is a need to assess the consequences for different components of crop production. Methods. We used pollination exclusion on flowers or inflorescences on a whole plant basis to assess the contribution of insect pollination to crop yield and quality in four flowering crops (spring oilseed rape, field bean, strawberry, and buckwheat located in four regions of Europe. For each crop, we recorded abundance and species richness of flower visiting insects in ten fields located along a gradient from simple to heterogeneous landscapes. Results. Insect pollination enhanced average crop yield between 18 and 71% depending on the crop. Yield quality was also enhanced in most crops. For instance, oilseed rape had higher oil and lower chlorophyll contents when adequately pollinated, the proportion of empty seeds decreased in buckwheat, and strawberries’ commercial grade improved; however, we did not find higher nitrogen content in open pollinated field beans. Complex landscapes had a higher overall species richness of wild pollinators across crops, but visitation rates were only higher in complex landscapes for some crops. On the contrary, the overall yield was consistently enhanced by higher visitation rates, but not by higher pollinator richness. Discussion. For the four crops in this study, there is clear benefit delivered by pollinators on yield quantity and/or quality, but it is not maximized under current agricultural intensification. Honeybees, the most abundant pollinator, might partially compensate the loss of

  10. Upgrading protein products using bioprocessing on agricultural crops

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sulewska, Anna Maria; Sørensen, Jens Christian; Markedal, Keld Ejdrup;

    2015-01-01

    -enriched products with minimized content of antinutritional compounds. For every crop it is a challenge to obtain protein fractions with sufficient added value to make processing economically feasible. In this work we present the characterization of protein products developed in pilot scale using the novel...... sustainability leads to a demand for plant protein products made from locally grown crops. Novel bioprocessing methods have been developed to generate protein products which are nutritious, readily available and do not generate hazardous waste. The processing focus has therefore been on developing protein...

  11. An assessment of alternative agricultural management practice impacts on soil carbon in the corn belt

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barnwell, T.O. Jr.; Jackson, R.B.; Mulkey, L.A. [Environmental Research Laboratory, Athens, GA (United States)

    1993-12-31

    This impact of alternative management practices on agricultural soil C is estimated by a soil C mass balance modeling study that incorporates policy considerations in the analysis. A literature review of soil C modeling and impacts of management practices has been completed. The models selected for use and/or modification to meet the needs of representing soil C cycles in agroecosystems and impacts of management practices are CENTURY and DNDC. These models share a common ability to examine the impacts of alternative management practices on soil organic C, and are readily accessible. An important aspect of this effort is the development of the modeling framework and methodology that define the agricultural production systems and scenarios (i.e., crop-soil-climate combinations) to be assessed in terms of national policy, the integration of the model needs with available databases, and the operational mechanics of evaluating C sequestration potential with the integrated model/database system. We are working closely with EPA`s Office of Policy and Program Evaluation to define a reasonable set of policy alternatives for this assessment focusing on policy that might be affected through a revised Farm Bill, such as incentives to selectively promote conservation tillage, crop rotations, and/or good stewardship of the conservation reserve. Policy alternatives are translated into basic data for use in soil C models through economic models. These data, including such elements as agricultural practices, fertilization rates, and production levels are used in the soil C models to produce net carbon changes on a per unit area basis. The unit-area emissions are combined with areal-extent data in a GIS to produce an estimate of total carbon and nitrogen changes and thus estimate greenhouse benefits.

  12. Genetically Engineered Crops and Certified Organic Agriculture for Improving Nutrition Security in Africa and South Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pray, Carl; Ledermann, Samuel

    2016-01-01

    In Africa and South Asia, where nutrition insecurity is severe, two of the most prominent production technologies are genetically modified (GM) crops and certified organic agriculture. We analyze the potential impact pathways from agricultural production to nutrition. Our review of data and the literature reveals increasing farm-level income from cash crop production as the main pathway by which organic agriculture and GM agriculture improve nutrition. Potential secondary pathways include reduced prices of important food crops like maize due to GM maize production and increased food production using organic technology. Potential tertiary pathways are improvements in health due to reduced insecticide use. Challenges to the technologies achieving their impact include the politics of GM agriculture and the certification costs of organic agriculture. Given the importance of agricultural production in addressing nutrition security, accentuated by the post-2015 sustainable development agenda, the chapter concludes by stressing the importance of private and public sector research in improving the productivity and adoption of both GM and organic crops. In addition, the chapter reminds readers that increased farm income and productivity require complementary investments in health, education, food access and women's empowerment to actually improve nutrition security. PMID:27197837

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Nancy T.; Capel, Paul D.

    2011-01-01

    This report presents and describes high-resolution geospatial data identifying the range of environmental conditions that influence the location of cropped agricultural lands in the conterminous United States. Also presented are estimates of the extent of land where environmental constraints limit agricultural production (marginal land) and the extents of land where modifications overcome environmental constraints. The report is the result of the compilation and manipulation of datasets from numerous sources; it consists of an explanatory text and a series of appendixes and associated tables that document the data sources and data-manipulation methods in detail. Environmental factors that influence the extent of crop agriculture are terrain, climate, soil properties, and soil water. It is the combination of these four factors that allow specific crops to be grown in certain areas. Today, in order to maximize production, most of the cultivated croplands and grasslands for commercial agriculture are in areas where crops and livestock are well suited to local conditions. In the United States, cropland (row crops, closely sown crops (except hay), fruits, nuts, vegetables) occupies about 13 percent of the total land area. Grassland and rangeland occupy another 41 percent of the land area.

  14. Development and testing of crop monitoring methods to improve global agricultural monitoring in support of GEOGLAM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilliams, S. J. B.; Bydekerke, L.

    2014-12-01

    The SIGMA project (Stimulating Innovation for Global Monitoring of Agriculture) is funded through the EC FPY7 Research programme with the particular aim to contribute to the GEOGLAM Research Agenda. It is a partnership of globally distributed expert organizations, focusses on developing innovative techniques and datasets in support of agricultural monitoring and its impact on the environment in support of GEOGLAM. SIGMA has 3 generic objectives which are: (i) develop and test methods to characterize cropland and assess its changes at various scales; (ii) develop and test methods to assess changes in agricultural production levels; and; (iii) study environmental impacts of agriculture. Firstly, multi-scale remote sensing data sets, in combination with field and other ancillary data, are used to generate an improved (global) agro-ecological zoning map and crop mask. Secondly, a combination of agro-meteorological models, satellite-based information and long-term time series are be explored to better assess crop yield gaps and shifts in cultivation. The third research topic entails the development of best practices for assessing the impact of crop land and cropping system change on the environment. In support of the GEO JECAM (Joint Experiment for Crop Assessment and Monitoring) initiative, case studies in Ukraine, Russia, Europe, Africa, Latin America and China are carried out in order to explore possible methodological synergies and particularities according to different cropping systems. This presentation will report on the progress made with respect to the three topics above.

  15. Agriculture and Bioactives: Achieving Both Crop Yield and Phytochemicals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irineo Torres-Pacheco

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Plants are fundamental elements of the human diet, either as direct sources of nutrients or indirectly as feed for animals. During the past few years, the main goal of agriculture has been to increase yield in order to provide the food that is needed by a growing world population. As important as yield, but commonly forgotten in conventional agriculture, is to keep and, if it is possible, to increase the phytochemical content due to their health implications. Nowadays, it is necessary to go beyond this, reconciling yield and phytochemicals that, at first glance, might seem in conflict. This can be accomplished through reviewing food requirements, plant consumption with health implications, and farming methods. The aim of this work is to show how both yield and phytochemicals converge into a new vision of agricultural management in a framework of integrated agricultural practices.

  16. Pesticide fate modeling in soils with the crop model STICS: Feasibility for assessment of agricultural practices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Queyrel, Wilfried; Habets, Florence; Blanchoud, Hélène; Ripoche, Dominique; Launay, Marie

    2016-01-15

    Numerous pesticide fate models are available, but few of them are able to take into account specific agricultural practices, such as catch crop, mixing crops or tillage in their predictions. In order to better integrate crop management and crop growth in the simulation of diffuse agricultural pollutions, and to manage both pesticide and nitrogen pollution, a pesticide fate module was implemented in the crop model STICS. The objectives of the study were: (i) to implement a pesticide fate module in the crop model STICS; (ii) to evaluate the model performance using experimental data from three sites with different pedoclimatic contexts, one in The Netherlands and two in northern France; (iii) to compare the simulations with several pesticide fate models; and (iv) to test the impact of specific agricultural practices on the transfer of the dissolved fraction of pesticides. The evaluations were carried out with three herbicides: bentazone, isoproturon, and atrazine. The strategy applied in this study relies on a noncalibration approach and sensitivity test to assess the operating limits of the model. To this end, the evaluation was performed with default values found in the literature and completed by sensitivity tests. The extended version of the STICS named STICS-Pest, shows similar results with other pesticide fate models widely used in the literature. Moreover, STICS-Pest was able to estimate realistic crop growth and catch crop dynamic, which thus illustrate agricultural practices leading to a reduction of nitrate and a change in pesticide leaching. The dynamic plot-scale model, STICS-Pest is able to simulate nitrogen and pesticide fluxes, when the hydrologic context is in the validity range of the reservoir (or capacity) model. According to these initial results, the model may be a relevant tool for studying the effect of long-term agricultural practices on pesticide residue dynamics in soil and the associated diffuse pollution transfer. PMID:26556743

  17. Feeding the world: genetically modified crops versus agricultural biodiversity

    OpenAIRE

    Jacobsen, Sven-Erik; Sørensen, Marten; Pedersen, Søren; Weiner, Jacob

    2013-01-01

    International audience The growing demand for food poses major challenges to humankind. We have to safeguard both biodiversity and arable land for future agricultural food production, and we need to protect genetic diversity to safeguard ecosystem resilience. We must produce more food with less input, while deploying every effort to minimize risk. Agricultural sustainability is no longer optional but mandatory. There is still an on-going debate among researchers and in the media on the bes...

  18. Acceptance of Sustainable Agricultural Practices: The Case of Crop Farmers

    OpenAIRE

    Jeffrey L. DSilva; Norsida Man; Hayrol A.M. Shaffril; Bahaman A. Samah

    2011-01-01

    Problem statement: Agriculture for numerous years has been a source of income generator that offered wide opportunities for employment and enhancing the socio-economic status of mankind in many countries. Without doubt acceptance of agricultural sustainable practices will bring much benefit to the farming community especially in the long run to overcome the scarcity of resources and continuous income. Aim of this study was to determine contract farming entrepreneurs acceptance of sustainable ...

  19. Commercial Crop Yields Reveal Strengths and Weaknesses for Organic Agriculture in the United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kniss, Andrew R; Savage, Steven D; Jabbour, Randa

    2016-01-01

    Land area devoted to organic agriculture has increased steadily over the last 20 years in the United States, and elsewhere around the world. A primary criticism of organic agriculture is lower yield compared to non-organic systems. Previous analyses documenting the yield deficiency in organic production have relied mostly on data generated under experimental conditions, but these studies do not necessarily reflect the full range of innovation or practical limitations that are part of commercial agriculture. The analysis we present here offers a new perspective, based on organic yield data collected from over 10,000 organic farmers representing nearly 800,000 hectares of organic farmland. We used publicly available data from the United States Department of Agriculture to estimate yield differences between organic and conventional production methods for the 2014 production year. Similar to previous work, organic crop yields in our analysis were lower than conventional crop yields for most crops. Averaged across all crops, organic yield averaged 80% of conventional yield. However, several crops had no significant difference in yields between organic and conventional production, and organic yields surpassed conventional yields for some hay crops. The organic to conventional yield ratio varied widely among crops, and in some cases, among locations within a crop. For soybean (Glycine max) and potato (Solanum tuberosum), organic yield was more similar to conventional yield in states where conventional yield was greatest. The opposite trend was observed for barley (Hordeum vulgare), wheat (Triticum aestevum), and hay crops, however, suggesting the geographical yield potential has an inconsistent effect on the organic yield gap. PMID:27552217

  20. Estimates of agricultural cropping-practices in counties in the conterminous United States as reported in the 1987 Census of Agriculture

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — This coverage contains estimates of agricultural cropping-practices in counties in the conterminous United States as reported in the 1987 Census of Agriculture...

  1. Acceptance of Sustainable Agricultural Practices: The Case of Crop Farmers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey L. DSilva

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: Agriculture for numerous years has been a source of income generator that offered wide opportunities for employment and enhancing the socio-economic status of mankind in many countries. Without doubt acceptance of agricultural sustainable practices will bring much benefit to the farming community especially in the long run to overcome the scarcity of resources and continuous income. Aim of this study was to determine contract farming entrepreneurs acceptance of sustainable agricultural practices and the issues involved in their level of acceptance. Approach: This is a qualitative study and the data was collected from a focus group discussion on seven contract farming entrepreneurs in Cameron Highlands, Malaysia. The researchers played the role as the instrument during the data collection process and an interview guide assisted researchers to obtain objectives of the study. Data obtained from the respondents was recorded and eventually transformed into verbatim transcripts for the process of data analysis. Results: It was identified that contract farming entrepreneurs have a sound knowledge on sustainable agricultural practices and they belief it is vital for mankind. However, their level of acceptance is still not significant as they perceive that they still need much support from the relevant agriculture agencies. Conclusion/Recommendation: It is suggested that all concerned parties should make the necessary sacrifices and put in more effort in ensuring that contract farming entrepreneurs will eventually embrace sustainable agricultural practices that will bring benefit to the present and future generations.

  2. Biomass supply from alternative cellulosic crops and crop residues: A spatially explicit bioeconomic modeling approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper introduces a spatially-explicit bioeconomic model for the study of potential cellulosic biomass supply. For biomass crops to begin to replace current crops, farmers must earn more from them than from current crops. Using weather, topographic and soil data, the terrestrial ecosystem model, EPIC, dynamically simulates multiple cropping systems that vary by crop rotation, tillage, fertilization and residue removal rate. EPIC generates predicted crop yield and environmental outcomes over multiple watersheds. These EPIC results are used to parameterize a regional profit-maximization mathematical programming model that identifies profitable cropping system choices. The bioeconomic model is calibrated to 2007–09 crop production in a 9-county region of southwest Michigan. A simulation of biomass supply in response to rising biomass prices shows that cellulosic residues from corn stover and wheat straw begin to be supplied at minimum delivered biomass:corn grain price ratios of 0.15 and 0.18, respectively. At the mean corn price of $162.6/Mg ($4.13 per bushel) at commercial moisture content during 2007–2009, these ratios correspond to stover and straw prices of $24 and $29 per dry Mg. Perennial bioenergy crops begin to be supplied at price levels 2–3 times higher. Average biomass transport costs to the biorefinery plant range from $6 to $20/Mg compared to conventional crop production practices in the area, biomass supply from annual crop residues increased greenhouse gas emissions and reduced water quality through increased nutrient loss. By contrast, perennial cellulosic biomass crop production reduced greenhouse gas emissions and improved water quality. -- Highlights: ► A new bioeconomic model predicts biomass supply and its environmental impacts. ► The model captures the opportunity cost of switching to new cellulosic crops. ► Biomass from crop residues is supplied at lower biomass price than cellulosic crops. ► Biomass from cellulosic crops has

  3. Effects of crop residue returning on nitrous oxide emissions in agricultural soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shan, Jun; Yan, Xiaoyuan

    2013-06-01

    Crop residue returning is a common practice in agricultural system that consequently influences nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions. Much attention has been focused on the effects of crop residue on N2O release. However, no systematic result has yet been drawn because environmental factors among different studies vary. A meta-analysis was described to integrate 112 scientific assessments of crop residue returning on N2O emissions in this study. Results showed that crop residue returning, when averaged across all studies, had no statistically significant effect on N2O release compared with control treatments. However, the range of effects of crop residue returning on N2O emission was significantly affected by synthetic nitrogen (N) fertilizer application, type of crop residue, specific manner in which crop residue has returned, and type of land-use. N2O release was significantly inhibited by 11.7% and 27.1% (P fertilizer and when type of land-use was paddy, respectively. While N2O emissions were significantly enhanced by 42.1% and 23.5% (P release at regional scale, and underlining that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change guidelines should take the opposite effects of crop residue returning on upland and paddy into account when estimating the N2O emission factor of crop residue for different land-use types. Given that most of data are dominated by certain types of crop residue and specific application methods, more field data are required to reduce uncertainty.

  4. Temperature stress and redox homeostasis in agricultural crops

    OpenAIRE

    Awasthi, Rashmi; Bhandari, Kalpna; Nayyar, Harsh

    2015-01-01

    Plants are exposed to a wide range of environmental conditions and one of the major forces that shape the structure and function of plants are temperature stresses, which include low and high temperature stresses and considered as major abiotic stresses for crop plants. Due to global climate change, temperature stress is becoming the major area of concern for the researchers worldwide. The reactions of plants to these stresses are complex and have devastating effects on plant metabolism, disr...

  5. Designing bioenergy crop buffers to mitigate nitrous oxide emissions and water quality impacts from agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopalakrishnan, G.; Negri, C. M.

    2010-12-01

    There is a strong societal need to evaluate and understand the environmental aspects of bioenergy production, especially due to the significant increases in production mandated by many countries, including the United States. Bioenergy is a land-based renewable resource and increases in production are likely to result in large-scale conversion of land from current uses to bioenergy crop production; potentially causing increases in the prices of food, land and agricultural commodities as well as disruption of ecosystems. Current research on the environmental sustainability of bioenergy has largely focused on the potential of bioenergy crops to sequester carbon and mitigate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and possible impacts on water quality and quantity. A key assumption in these studies is that bioenergy crops will be grown in a manner similar to current agricultural crops such as corn and hence would affect the environment similarly. This study presents a systems approach where the agricultural, energy and environmental sectors are considered as components of a single system, and bioenergy crops are used to design multi-functional agricultural landscapes that meet society’s requirements for food, energy and environmental protection. We evaluate the production of bioenergy crop buffers on marginal land and using degraded water and discuss the potential for growing cellulosic bioenergy crops such as miscanthus and switchgrass in optimized systems such that (1) marginal land is brought into productive use; (2) impaired water is used to boost yields (3); clean freshwater is left for other uses that require higher water quality; and (4) feedstock diversification is achieved that helps ecological sustainability, biodiversity, and economic opportunities for farmers. The process-based biogeochemical model DNDC was used to simulate crop yield, nitrous oxide production and nitrate concentrations in groundwater when bioenergy crops were grown in buffer strips adjacent to

  6. Paradoxical EU agricultural policies on genetically engineered crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masip, Gemma; Sabalza, Maite; Pérez-Massot, Eduard; Banakar, Raviraj; Cebrian, David; Twyman, Richard M; Capell, Teresa; Albajes, Ramon; Christou, Paul

    2013-06-01

    European Union (EU) agricultural policy has been developed in the pursuit of laudable goals such as a competitive economy and regulatory harmony across the union. However, what has emerged is a fragmented, contradictory, and unworkable legislative framework that threatens economic disaster. In this review, we present case studies highlighting differences in the regulations applied to foods grown in EU countries and identical imported products, which show that the EU is undermining its own competitiveness in the agricultural sector, damaging both the EU and its humanitarian activities in the developing world. We recommend the adoption of rational, science-based principles for the harmonization of agricultural policies to prevent economic decline and lower standards of living across the continent. PMID:23623240

  7. AVAILABILITY AND PHYSICAL PROPERTIES OF RESIDUES FROM MAJOR AGRICULTURAL CROPS FOR ENERGY CONVERSION THROUGH THERMOCHEMICAL PROCESSES

    OpenAIRE

    Yaning Zhang; A. E. Ghaly; Bingxi Li

    2012-01-01

    Plant residues from the major agricultural crops (wheat, rice, corn, soybean, sugarcane, coffee and cotton) are abundantly available renewable resources that can be used to supply energy through thermochemical conversion processes. The available amounts of plant residues from these crops and their physical properties (moisture content, particle size, bulk density and porosity) were determined. The annual residues from the wheat, rice, corn, soybean, sugarcane, coffee and cotton were 763.42, 6...

  8. Crop-Diversification for Conservation of Water Resource and Agricultural Growth: A Comparative Dynamic Analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Joydeb Sasmal

    2013-01-01

    This article has addressed the problem of overexploitation of ground water for irrigation and built up a theoretical model to demonstrate how crop diversification in favour of water-saving crops can help conservation of water resource and agricultural growth. The comparative dynamic analysis on the optimal path of ground water stock has been done using variational differential equation. The qualitative results in Phase-Diagram show that if R&D expenditure is increased by the government or inp...

  9. ECONOMIC ASPECTS OF AN AGRICULTURAL INNOVATION – PRECISION CROP PRODUCTION

    OpenAIRE

    Takacs-Gyorgy, Katalin

    2012-01-01

    Innovation in agriculture ensures the wide-spread use of the latest, up-to-date technology. Such new technology is precision farming in crop production, which serves as a validation of the criteria of environmental and economic sustainability. The economic applicability of precision crop production depends on several factors.Among them the following aspects must be emphasized: the size of the farm, the characteristics of the production structure, the current input-output prices and their tend...

  10. A GPS Backpack System for Mapping Soil and Crop Parameters in Agricultural Fields

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stafford, J. V.; Lebars, J. M.

    Farmers are having to gather increasing amounts of data on their soils and crops. Precision agriculture metre-by-metre is based on a knowledge of the spatial variation of soil and crop parameters across a field. The data has to be spatially located and GPS is an effective way of doing this. A backpack data logging system with GPS position tagging is described which has been designed to aid a fanner in the manual collection of data.

  11. Hybridization of powdery mildew strains gives rise to pathogens on novel agricultural crop species

    OpenAIRE

    Menardo, Fabrizio; Praz, Coraline R; Wyder, Stefan; Ben-David, Roi; Bourras, Salim; Matsumae, Hiromi; McNally, Kaitlin E.; Parlange, Francis; Riba, Andrea; Roffler, Stefan; Schaefer, Luisa K; Shimizu, Kentaro K; Valenti, Luca; Zbinden, Helen; Wicker, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Throughout the history of agriculture, many new crop species (polyploids or artificial hybrids) have been introduced to diversify products or to increase yield. However, little is known about how these new crops influence the evolution of new pathogens and diseases. Triticale is an artificial hybrid of wheat and rye, and it was resistant to the fungal pathogen powdery mildew (Blumeria graminis) until 2001 (refs. 1,2,3). We sequenced and compared the genomes of 46 powdery mildew isolates cover...

  12. Managing the Agricultural Revenue Risk in Brazil: Implications for Developing a Crop Insurance Program

    OpenAIRE

    Ozaki, Vitor Augusto; Adami, Andreia Cristina de Oliveira

    2013-01-01

    Since 2003 crop insurance programs became the focus of agricultural policy in Brazil. Given the increasing interest in insurance, accurate calculation of premium values is of great importance. We address the issue of the revenue distribution at the farm-level and its implication to the Brazilian crop insurance contract. We estimate the probability of loss by using the Skew-normal distribution of revenue in the West of Parana (South of Brazil). Results show that insurers (empirical) rates tend...

  13. Identification of biomes affected by marginal expansion of agricultural land use induced by increased crop consumption

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kløverpris, Jesper Hedal

    2009-01-01

    to characterise these areas. The present study ascribes so-called biomes (natural potential vegetation) to the areas affected by agricultural expansion in order to provide a basis for assessing the environmental impacts from land use in the life cycle impact assessment (LCIA). The methodology builds...... on agricultural statistics and maps of global agricultural areas and the global distribution of biomes. The application of the method is illustrated with four examples. The results indicate that agricultural expansion on land suited for crop cultivation (cultivable land) typically affects forest...

  14. Safeguarding fruit crops in the age of agricultural globalization

    Science.gov (United States)

    The expansion of fruit production and markets into new geographic areas provides novel opportunities and challenges for the agricultural and marketing industries. In today’s competitive global market environment, growers need access to the best material available in terms of genetics and plant heal...

  15. Economic value of crop residues in African smallholder agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Berazneva, Julia

    2013-01-01

    This paper contributes to our understanding of the use and management of crop residues in East African highlands and farmers' decision-making associated with this important on-farm resource. Using the data from a socio-economic and household production survey of a sample of 310 households in 15 villages in western Kenya conducted in 2011-2012, the analysis shows that the decision to allocate maize residues to organic fertilizer and the amount of such allocation among Kenyan farmers is in uenc...

  16. Effects of Interannual Climate Variability on Water Availability and Productivity in Capoeira and Crops Under Traditional and Alternative Shifting Cultivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guild, Liane S.; Sa, Tatiana D. A.; Carvalho, Claudio J. R.; Potter, Christopher S.; Wickel, Albert J.; Brienza, Silvio, Jr.; Kato, Maria doSocorro A.; Kato, Osvaldo; Brass, James (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Regenerating forests play an important role in long-term carbon sequestration and sustainable landuse as they act as potentially important carbon and nutrient sinks during the shifting agriculture fallow period. The long-term functioning of capoeira. is increasingly threatened by a shortening fallow period during shifting cultivation due to demographic pressures and associated increased vulnerability to severe climatic events. Declining productivity and functioning of fallow forests of shifting cultivation combined with progressive loss of nutrients by successive burning and cropping activities has resulted in declining agricultural productivity. In addition to the effects of intense land use practices, droughts associated with El Nino events are becoming more frequent and severe in moist tropical forests and negative effects on capoeira productivity could be considerable. In Igarape-Acu (near Belem, Para), we hypothesize that experimental alternative landuse/clearing practices (mulching and fallow vegetation improvement by planting with fast-growing leguminous tree species) may make capoeira and agriculture more resilient to the effects of agricultural pressures and drought through (1) increased biomass, soil organic matter and associated increase in soil water storage, and nutrient retention and (2) greater rooting depth of trees planted for fallow improvement. This experimental practice (moto mechanized chop-and-mulch with fallow improvement) has resulted increased soil moisture during the cropping phase, reduced loss of nutrients and organic matter, and higher rates of secondary-forest biomass accumulation. We present preliminary data on water relations during the dry season of 2001 in capoeira and crops for both traditional slash-and-burn and alternative chop-and-mulch practices. These data will be used to test IKONOS data for the detection of moisture status differences. The principal goal of the research is to determine the extent to which capoeira and

  17. Wastes and by-products - alternatives for agricultural use

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Top address a growing national problem with generation of wastes and by-products, TVA has been involved for several years with developing and commercializing environmentally responsible practices for eliminating, minimizing, or utilizing various wastes/by-products. In many cases, reducing waste generation is impractical, but the wastes/by-products can be converted into other environmentally sound products. In some instances, conversion of safe, value-added agricultural products in the best or only practical alternative. TVA is currently involved with a diversity of projects converting wastes/by-products into safe, economical, and agriculturally beneficial products. Environmental improvement projects have involved poultry litter, cellulosic wastes, used battery acid, ammonium sulfate fines, lead smelting effluents, deep-welled sulfuric acid/ammonium bisulfate solutions, wood ash, waste magnesium ammonium sulfate slurry from recording tape production, and ammunition plant waste sodium nitrate/ammonium nitrate streams

  18. Wastes and by-products - alternatives for agricultural use

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boles, J.L.; Craft, D.J.; Parker, B.R.

    1994-10-01

    Top address a growing national problem with generation of wastes and by-products, TVA has been involved for several years with developing and commercializing environmentally responsible practices for eliminating, minimizing, or utilizing various wastes/by-products. In many cases, reducing waste generation is impractical, but the wastes/by-products can be converted into other environmentally sound products. In some instances, conversion of safe, value-added agricultural products in the best or only practical alternative. TVA is currently involved with a diversity of projects converting wastes/by-products into safe, economical, and agriculturally beneficial products. Environmental improvement projects have involved poultry litter, cellulosic wastes, used battery acid, ammonium sulfate fines, lead smelting effluents, deep-welled sulfuric acid/ammonium bisulfate solutions, wood ash, waste magnesium ammonium sulfate slurry from recording tape production, and ammunition plant waste sodium nitrate/ammonium nitrate streams.

  19. Reduced nitrogen losses after conversion of row crop agriculture to perennial biofuel crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Candice M; David, Mark B; Mitchell, Corey A; Masters, Michael D; Anderson-Teixeira, Kristina J; Bernacchi, Carl J; Delucia, Evan H

    2013-01-01

    Current biofuel feedstock crops such as corn lead to large environmental losses of N through nitrate leaching and NO emissions; second-generation cellulosic crops have the potential to reduce these N losses. We measured N losses and cycling in establishing miscanthus (), switchgrass ( L. fertilized with 56 kg N ha yr), and mixed prairie, along with a corn ( L.)-corn-soybean [ (L.) Merr.] rotation (corn fertilized at 168-202 kg N ha). Nitrous oxide emissions, soil N mineralization, mid-profile nitrate leaching, and tile flow and nitrate concentrations were measured. Perennial crops quickly reduced nitrate leaching at a 50-cm soil depth as well as concentrations and loads from the tile systems (year 1 tile nitrate concentrations of 10-15 mg N L declined significantly by year 4 in all perennial crops to <0.6 mg N L, with losses of <0.8 kg N ha yr). Nitrous oxide emissions were 2.2 to 7.7 kg N ha yr in the corn-corn-soybean rotation but were <1.0 kg N ha yr by year 4 in the perennial crops. Overall N balances (atmospheric deposition + fertilization + soybean N fixation - harvest, leaching losses, and NO emissions) were positive for corn and soybean (22 kg N ha yr) as well as switchgrass (9.7 kg N ha yr) but were -18 and -29 kg N ha yr for prairie and miscanthus, respectively. Our results demonstrate rapid tightening of the N cycle as perennial biofuel crops established on a rich Mollisol soil. PMID:23673757

  20. Rhaponticum carthamoides - perspective crop for marginal agricultural regions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kužel, S.; Hrubý, Martin; Cígler, P.; Grbavčic, M.; Vydra, J.

    Nitra: Slovak University of Agriculture, 2004 - (Habán, M.). s. 102 ISBN 80-8069-396-X. [Conference on Medicinal and Aromatic Plants of Sountheast European Countries /3./. 05.09.2004-08.09.2004, Nitra] R&D Projects: GA ČR GA521/02/1378; GA MŠk ME 704 Keywords : Rhaponticum carthamoides * growing * marginal regions Subject RIV: GD - Fertilization, Irrigation, Soil Processing

  1. Enzyme activities in agricultural soils fumigated with methyl bromide alternatives

    OpenAIRE

    Klose, Susanne; Ajwa, H A

    2004-01-01

    Pre-plant fumigation of agricultural soils with a combination of methyl bromide (MeBr) and chloropicrin (CP) to control nematodes, soil-borne pathogens and weeds has been a common practice in strawberry (Fragaria X ananassa Duchesne) production since the 1960s. MeBr will be phased out by 2005, but little is known about the impacts of alternative fumigants on soil microbial processes. We investigated the response of microbial biomass and enzyme activities in soils fumigated over two years with...

  2. Stagnating crop yields: An overlooked risk for the carbon balance of agricultural soils?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiesmeier, Martin; Hübner, Rico; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid

    2015-12-01

    The carbon (C) balance of agricultural soils may be largely affected by climate change. Increasing temperatures are discussed to cause a loss of soil organic carbon (SOC) due to enhanced decomposition of soil organic matter, which has a high intrinsic temperature sensitivity. On the other hand, several modeling studies assumed that potential SOC losses would be compensated or even outperformed by an increased C input by crop residues into agricultural soils. This assumption was based on a predicted general increase of net primary productivity (NPP) as a result of the CO2 fertilization effect and prolonged growing seasons. However, it is questionable if the crop C input into agricultural soils can be derived from NPP predictions of vegetation models. The C input in European croplands is largely controlled by the agricultural management and was strongly related to the development of crop yields in the last decades. Thus, a glance at past yield development will probably be more instructive for future estimations of the C input than previous modeling approaches based on NPP predictions. An analysis of European yield statistics indicated that yields of wheat, barley and maize are stagnating in Central and Northern Europe since the 1990s. The stagnation of crop yields can probably be related to a fundamental change of the agricultural management and to climate change effects. It is assumed that the soil C input is concurrently stagnating which would necessarily lead to a decrease of agricultural SOC stocks in the long-term given a constant temperature increase. Remarkably, for almost all European countries that are faced with yield stagnation indications for agricultural SOC decreases were already found. Potentially adverse effects of yield stagnation on the C balance of croplands call for an interdisciplinary investigation of its causes and a comprehensive monitoring of SOC stocks in agricultural soils of Europe. PMID:26235605

  3. Pharmaceutical and Industrial Traits in Genetically Modified Crops: Co-Existence with Conventional Agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Moschini, GianCarlo

    2006-01-01

    This paper discusses the implications of using genetically modified crops to biomanufacture pharmaceuticals and industrial compounds from the perspective of their co-existence with conventional agriculture. Such plant-made pharmaceuticals and plant-made industrial products rely on exciting scientific and technological breakthroughs and promise new opportunities for the agricultural sector, but they also entail novel risks. The management of the externalities and of the possible unintended eco...

  4. Multi-criteria evaluation of the alternative fodder crops use in the Lower Savinja Valley

    OpenAIRE

    Alenka Jelen; Blaž Repe

    2015-01-01

    From the 19th century onwards, with the intensification of livestock production the demand for meat products is increasing. For animal feed are primarily used plants that allow maximum yield per hectare. Among them, the dominant crop is silage maize but, it is very vulnerable crop due to water shortages and heat waves during the peak growing season. In this article, we are looking for opportunities to use other fodder crops as alternative to silage maize, especially cereals and fodder legumes.

  5. Soil microbial functionality in response to the inclusion of cover crop mixtures in agricultural systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego N. Chavarría

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Agricultural systems where monoculture prevails are characterized by fertility losses and reduced contribution to ecosystem services. Including cover crops (CC as part of an agricultural system is a promising choice in sustainable intensification of those demanding systems. We evaluated soil microbial functionality in cash crops in response to the inclusion of CC by analyzing soil microbial functions at two different periods of the agricultural year (cash crop harvest and CC desiccation during 2013 and 2014. Three plant species were used as CC: oat (Avena sativa L., vetch (Vicia sativa L. and radish (Raphanus sativus L. which were sown in two different mixtures of species: oat and radish mix (CC1 and oat, radish and vetch mix (CC2, with soybean monoculture and soybean/corn being the cash crops. The study of community level physiological profiles showed statistical differences in respiration of specific C sources indicating an improvement of catabolic diversity in CC treatments. Soil enzyme activities were also increased with the inclusion of CC mixtures, with values of dehydrogenase activity and fluorescein diacetate hydrolysis up to 38.1% and 35.3% higher than those of the control treatment, respectively. This research evidenced that CC inclusion promotes soil biological quality through a contribution of soil organic carbon, improving the sustainability of agrosystems. The use of a CC mixture of three plant species including the legume vetch increased soil biological processes and catabolic diversity, with no adverse effects on cash crop grain yield.

  6. An Integrated Greenhouse Gas Assessment of an Alternative to Slash-and-Burn Agriculture in Eastern Amazonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, E. A.; Sá, T. D.; Carvalho, C. J.; Figueiredo, R. D.; Kato, M. D.; Kato, O. R.; Ishida, F. Y.

    2007-12-01

    Fires set for slash-and-burn agriculture contribute to the current unsustainable accumulation of atmospheric greenhouse gases, and they also deplete the soil of essential nutrients, which compromises agricultural sustainability at local scales. Integrated assessments of greenhouse gas emissions have compared intensive cropping systems in industrialized countries, but such assessments have not been applied to common cropping systems of smallholder farmers in developing countries. We report an integrated assessment of greenhouse gas emissions in slash-and-burn agriculture and an alternative chop-and-mulch system in the Amazon Basin. The soil consumed atmospheric methane under slash-and-burn treatment and became a net emitter of methane to the atmosphere under the mulch treatment. Mulching also caused about a 50 percent increase in soil emissions of nitric oxide and nitrous oxide and required use of fertilizer and fuel for farm machinery. Despite these significantly higher emissions of greenhouse gases during the cropping phase under the alternative chop- and-mulch system, calculated pyrogenic emissions in the slash-and-burn system were much larger, especially for methane. The global warming potential CO2-equivalent emissions calculated for the entire crop cycles were at least five times lower in chop-and-mulch compared to slash-and-burn and were dominated by differences in methane emissions. The crop yields were similar for the two systems. While economic and logistical considerations remain to be worked out for alternatives to slash-and-burn, these results demonstrate a potential "win-win" strategy for maintaining soil fertility and reducing net greenhouse gas emissions, thus simultaneously contributing to sustainability at both spatial scales.

  7. Detection of Interannual Climate Variability in Secondary Forests and Crops Under Traditional and Alternative Shifting Cultivation Using Ikonos Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sa, T.; Guild, L.; Carvalho, C.; Wickel, A.; Brienza, S.; Kato, M.; Kato, O.; Leibs, C.

    2004-12-01

    Regenerating forests play an important role in long-term carbon sequestration and sustainable landuse as they act as potentially important carbon and nutrient sinks during the shifting agriculture fallow period. The long-term functioning of secondary forests (capoeira) is increasingly threatened by a shortening fallow period during shifting cultivation due to demographic pressures and associated increased vulnerability to severe climatic events. Declining productivity and functioning of fallow forests of shifting cultivation combined with progressive loss of nutrients by successive burning and cropping activities has resulted in declining agricultural productivity. In addition to the effects of intense land use practices, droughts associated with El Nino events are becoming more frequent and severe in moist tropical forests and negative effects on capoeira productivity could be considerable. The principal goal of the research is to determine the extent to which capoeira and agricultural fields are susceptible to extreme climate events (drought) under contrasting landuse/clearing practices. In Igarape-Açu (near Belem, Para), we hypothesize that experimental alternative landuse/clearing practices (mulching) may make capoeira and crops more resilient to the effects of agricultural pressures and drought through increased biomass, soil organic matter and associated increase in soil water storage, and nutrient retention. This experimental practice (mechanized chop-and-mulch) has resulted in increased soil moisture during the cropping phase, reduced loss of nutrients and organic matter, and higher rates of secondary-forest biomass accumulation. This project aims to measure water availability and it's relation to secondary forest and crop productivity in the Brazilian Amazon. We have conducted field efforts during two dry seasons (August-December). Field data on water relations were collected during the dry season of 2001 and 2002 in capoeira and crops for both

  8. Spatial Optimization of Cropping Pattern in an Agricultural Watershed for Food and Biofuel Production with Minimum Downstream Pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pv, F.; Sudheer, K.; Chaubey, I.; RAJ, C.; Her, Y.

    2013-05-01

    Biofuel is considered to be a viable alternative to meet the increasing fuel demand, and therefore many countries are promoting agricultural activities that help increase production of raw material for biofuel production. Mostly, the biofuel is produced from grain based crops such as Corn, and it apparently create a shortage in food grains. Consequently, there have been regulations to limit the ethanol production from grains, and to use cellulosic crops as raw material for biofuel production. However, cultivation of such cellulosic crops may have different effects on water quality in the watershed. Corn stover, one of the potential cellulosic materials, when removed from the agricultural field for biofuel production, causes a decrease in the organic nutrients in the field. This results in increased use of pesticides and fertilizers which in turn affect the downstream water quality due to leaching of the chemicals. On the contrary, planting less fertilizer-intensive cellulosic crops, like Switch Grass and Miscanthus, is expected to reduce the pollutant loadings from the watershed. Therefore, an ecologically viable land use scenario would be a mixed cropping of grain crops and cellulosic crops, that meet the demand for food and biofuel without compromising on the downstream water quality. Such cropping pattern can be arrived through a simulation-optimization framework. Mathematical models can be employed to evaluate various management scenarios related to crop production and to assess its impact on water quality. Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) model is one of the most widely used models in this context. SWAT can simulate the water and nutrient cycles, and also quantify the long-term impacts of land management practices, in a watershed. This model can therefore help take decisions regarding the type of cropping and management practices to be adopted in the watershed such that the water quality in the rivers is maintained at acceptable level. In this study, it

  9. The economic impact of climate change on Kenyan crop agriculture : a ricardian approach

    OpenAIRE

    Kabubo-Mariara, Jane; Karanja, Fredrick K

    2007-01-01

    This paper measures the economic impact of climate on crops in Kenya. The analysis is based on cross-sectional climate, hydrological, soil, and household level data for a sample of 816 households, and uses a seasonal Ricardian model. Estimated marginal impacts of climate variables suggest that global warming is harmful for agricultural productivity and that changes in temperature are much ...

  10. Sustainable agriculture for a dynamic world: Forage-Crop-Livestock systems research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Research at the USDA-Agricultural Research Service, Grazinglands Research Laboratory is focused on development and delivery of improved technologies, strategies, and planning tools for integrated crop-forage-livestock systems under variable climate, energy, and market conditions. The GRL research p...

  11. Optimization based trade-off analysis of biodiesel crop production for managing a German agricultural catchment

    Science.gov (United States)

    In agricultural production, the existence of multiple trade-offs among several conflicting objectives, such as food production, water quantity, water quality, biodiversity and ecosystem services, is well known. However, quantification of the trade-offs among objectives in bioenergy crop production i...

  12. The importance of an alternative for sustainability of agriculture around the periphery of the Amazon rainforest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moura, Emanoel G; Sena, Virley G L; Corrêa, Mariana S; Aguiar, Alana das C F

    2013-04-01

    The unsustainable use of the soil of the deforested area at the Amazonian border is one of the greatest threats to the rainforest, because it is the predominant cause of shifting cultivation in the region. The sustainable management of soils with low natural fertility is a major challenge for smallholder agriculture in the humid tropics. In the periphery of Brazilian Amazonia, agricultural practices that are recommended for the Brazilian savannah, such as saturating soils with soluble nutrients do not ensure the sustainability of agroecosystems. Improvements in the tilled topsoil cannot be maintained if deterioration of the porous soil structure is not prevented and nutrient losses in the root zone are not curtailed. The information gleaned from experiments affirms that in the management of humid tropical agrosystems, the processes resulting from the interaction between climatic factors and indicators of soil quality must be taken into consideration. It must be remembered that these interactions manifest themselves in ways that cannot be predicted from the paradigm established in the other region like the southeast of Brazil, which is based only on improving the chemical indicators of soil quality. The physical indicators play important role in the sustainable management of the agrosystems of the region and for these reasons must be considered. Therefore, alley cropping is a potential substitute for slash and burn agriculture in the humid tropics with both environmental and agronomic advantages, due to its ability to produce a large amount of residues on the soil surface and its effect on the increase of economic crop productivity in the long term. The article presents some promising patents on the importance of an alternative for sustainability of agriculture. PMID:23305424

  13. Crop scheduling improvements for rainfed agriculture in the high jungle of Peru

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrique Meseth

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This work was aimed to improve the water management for agriculture by applying efficient crop schedules in Vilcabamba and similar areas of the high jungle, which can satisfy most of the water requirements with rainfed agriculture to maximize the crops yield. For this purpose, two field practices were carried out during the dry (September 2012 and wet season (February 2013 to measure rivers and canals flows with the velocity/area method; 19 soil samples were collected on-site and analyzed, presenting prevalent sandy loam and loam textures. Cropwat program was used to estimate crop water requirements and scheme irrigation requirements, resulting in a maximum flow capacity of 1.72 l s-1 in May, during the dry season. The flow capacity can be satisfied, since small ditches convey approximately 2 to 6 l s-1 on the same season. The research findings indicate that rainfed farming can be practised, yet an initial pre-irrigation needs to be applied, for crops should not be water stressed. However, if soil is not pre-irrigated the production can be affected, with vegetables and potato crop yields being reduced by 4.7% and 1.4% respectively. To minimize these effects, both crops are suggested to be sowed one month later, adapting their growth period to the rainy season.

  14. Social Impacts of GM Crops in Agriculture: A Systematic Literature Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klara Fischer

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available It has recently been argued that the fragmented knowledge on the social impacts of genetically modified (GM crops is contributing to the polarised debate on the matter. This paper addresses this issue by systematically reviewing 99 peer-reviewed journal articles published since 2004 on the social impacts of GM crops in agriculture; summarising current knowledge, and identifying research gaps. Economic impact studies currently dominate the literature and mainly report that GM crops provide economic benefits for farmers. Other social impacts are less well studied, but present a more complex picture. Studies on access to and benefits of GM crops show that these vary significantly depending on the political and regulatory setting. Substantial evidence indicates that intellectual property rights (IPR and the private industry’s dominance limit the access and utility of available GM crops to many farmers. Wellbeing is frequently discussed in the literature, but rarely investigated empirically. Existing evidence is contradictory and inconclusive. Impact studies from the Global North are virtually non-existent. Moreover, two-thirds of publications are based on previously published empirical evidence, indicating a need for new empirical investigations into the social impacts of GM crops in agriculture.

  15. Genetically modified crops: the fastest adopted crop technology in the history of modern agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Khush Gurdev S

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The major scientific advances of the last century featured the identification of the structure of DNA, the development of molecular biology and the technology to exploit these advances. These breakthroughs gave us new tools for crop improvement, including molecular marker-aided selection (MAS) and genetic modification (GM). MAS improves the efficiency of breeding programs, and GM allows us to accomplish breeding objectives not possible through conventional breeding approaches. MAS is...

  16. Influence of metacide - surfactant complexes on agricultural crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Orynkul Esimova

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The complexes based on surfactants and polyhexamethyleneguanidine hydrochloride (metacide are important for agriculture. This paper considers compositions of known bactericidal metacide with different surfactants: anionic surfactant sodium dodecylsulphate (DDSNa and nonionic surfactant Tween 80 (monooleate of oxyethylenated anhydrosorbitols. The effect of individual components and associates of metacide and surfactants on productivity and infection of cereals was studied. According to the study, the highest productivity and infection rate were shown by the associate of metacide and Tween-80. At concentration of Tween-80 in aqueous solution equal to 0.001% in combination with metacide, efficiency was 98% at 0% infection. The surface tension and the wetting of metacide, DDSNa, Tween-80, and associates of metacide with surfactants were studied. In comparison with individual components, metacide-DDSNa and metacide-Tween-80 associates have higher surface activity.

  17. Meteorological risks, impacts on crop production systems and agricultural insurances in Belgium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gobin, A.; Piccard, I.

    2012-04-01

    Devastating weather-related events recorded in recent years have captured the interest of the general public in Belgium. Extreme weather events such as droughts, heat stress, rain storms and floods are projected to increase both in frequency and magnitude with climate change. Since more than half of the Belgian territory is managed by the agricultural sector, extreme events have significant impacts on agro-ecosystem services and pose severe limitations to sustainable agricultural land management. The perspective of rising risk-exposure is exacerbated further by more limits to aid received for agricultural damage (amendments to EC Regulation 1857/2006) and an overall reduction of direct income support to farmers. Current knowledge gaps related to the occurrence of extreme events and the response of agro-ecosystems need to be addressed in conjunction with their vulnerability, resilience and adaptive possibilities. A chain of risks approach starts with assessing the likely frequency and magnitude of extreme meteorological events by means of probability density functions. Impacts are subsequently based on physically based models that provide information on the state of the damage at any given time and assist in understanding the links between different factors causing damage and in determining bio-physical vulnerability. The output of regional bio-physical models is compared with remote sensing based algorithms applied on SPOT-VGT temporal data. Crop damage and risk indicators are derived from remote sensing, meteorological records, crop modelling and agricultural statistics and compared to damage statistics obtained from the government-based agricultural disaster funds. Damages due to adverse meteorological events are strongly dependent on crop type, crop stage and soil type. Spatio-temporal indicators of drought during the growing season and waterlogging at harvest showed the highest agreement with damage, followed by hail and frost. In general potatoes, flax and

  18. Could Crop Height Affect the Wind Resource at Agriculturally Productive Wind Farm Sites?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanderwende, Brian; Lundquist, Julie K.

    2016-03-01

    The collocation of cropland and wind turbines in the US Midwest region introduces complex meteorological interactions that could influence both agriculture and wind-power production. Crop management practices may affect the wind resource through alterations of land-surface properties. We use the weather research and forecasting (WRF) model to estimate the impact of crop height variations on the wind resource in the presence of a large turbine array. A hypothetical wind farm consisting of 121 1.8-MW turbines is represented using the WRF model wind-farm parametrization. We represent the impact of selecting soybeans rather than maize by altering the aerodynamic roughness length in a region approximately 65 times larger than that occupied by the turbine array. Roughness lengths of 0.1 and 0.25 m represent the mature soy crop and a mature maize crop, respectively. In all but the most stable atmospheric conditions, statistically significant hub-height wind-speed increases and rotor-layer wind-shear reductions result from switching from maize to soybeans. Based on simulations for the entire month of August 2013, wind-farm energy output increases by 14 %, which would yield a significant monetary gain. Further investigation is required to determine the optimal size, shape, and crop height of the roughness modification to maximize the economic benefit and minimize the cost of such crop-management practices. These considerations must be balanced by other influences on crop choice such as soil requirements and commodity prices.

  19. TOTAL CARBON STOCK IN AGRICULTURAL SYSTEM HAVING CROP ROTATION IN TARAI REGION OF NORTHERN INDIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kavita Tariyal

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Soil organic carbon pools are important in maintaining soil productivity and influencing the CO2 loading into the atmosphere. Agricultural soils can mitigate the problem of carbon concentration increase in atmosphere if proper management practices are involved. In the present study, total carbon stock in crops and soil was analyzed for two years along with crop rotation practice to observe its impact on the carbon pool. For that two agricultural fields C12 and D7 were incorporated with different crop rotations for two years and on the basis of this SOC, Total Carbon, soil respiration and carbon stock were measured. In the end of the study C12 showed higher biomass carbon stock (2.61 t ha-1 as compared to D7 (1.98 t ha-1 and also higher total carbon stock (plant+soil (40.09 t ha-1 as compared to D7 (38.30 t ha-1. Results prove that agriculture can not only be the source but also an effective sink if it is properly managed with different crop rotation practices and also with no-till practice.

  20. Occupational exposure to particulate matter from three agricultural crops in California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Rebecca E; Bennett, Deborah H; Garcia, John; Schenker, Marc B

    2014-03-01

    Agricultural work is a major contributor to California's and the nation's economy and employs a large number of workers. However, agricultural work can have numerous risks, such as exposure to elevated levels of particulate matter (PM) and other airborne pollutants with potential adverse health effects. To determine the magnitude of occupational exposures, PM levels were assessed for 89 workers from three major crops in California; almonds, melons and tomatoes. Personal samples were collected for PM2.5 and inhalable PM using personal sampling equipment. Geometric mean concentrations from personal exposure for workers in almonds (inhalable PM=4368 μg/m(3), PM2.5=122 μg/m(3), N=5), tomatoes (inhalable PM=1410 μg/m(3), PM2.5=12 μg/m(3), N=33), and melons (inhalable PM=1118 μg/m(3), PM2.5=19 μg/m(3), N=51) showed high PM exposure when working with these three crops. Large exposure differences by crop were more common than by task (i.e. harvesting, packing and weeding) among the three crops studied. This is the largest study of agricultural workers engaged in hand harvesting, a significant employer of farm labor, and relatively high levels of exposure to PM were measured. PMID:23831254

  1. Reliable Crop Identification with Satellite Imagery in the Context of Common Agriculture Policy Subsidy Control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonas Schmedtmann

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Agricultural subsidies in the context of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP represent over 40% of the EU’s yearly budget. To ensure that funds are properly spent, farmers are controlled by National Control and Paying Agencies (NCPA using tools, such as computer-assisted photo interpretation (CAPI, which aims at identifying crops via remotely-sensed imagery. CAPI is time consuming and requires a large team of skilled photo interpreters. The objective of this study was to develop a reliable control system to partially replace CAPI for crop identification, with the overreaching goal of reducing control costs and completion time. Validated control data provided by the Portuguese Control and Paying Agency and an atmospherically-corrected Landsat ETM+ time series were used to perform parcel-based crop classification, leading to an accuracy of only 68% due to high similarity between crops’ spectral signatures. To address this problem, we propose an automatic control system (ACS that couples crop classification to a reliability requirement. This allows the decision-maker to set a reliability level, which restricts automatic crop identification to parcels that are classified with high certainty. While higher reliability levels reduce the risk of misclassifications, lower levels increase the proportion of automatic control decisions (ACP. With a reliability level of 80%, more than half of the parcels in our study area are automatically identified with an overall accuracy of 84%. In particular, this allows automatically controlling over 85% of all parcels classified as maize, rice, wheat or vineyard.

  2. Exploiting the allelopathic properties of agricultural crops in low-input cropping systems

    OpenAIRE

    Fomsgaard, Senior scientist Inge S.

    2006-01-01

    The FATEALLCHEM project (5th framework programme) applied a holistic approach and used modern techniques in allelopathy research, concluded on the possibilities of exploiting allelopathic properties of wheat and rye and established a framework for future allelopathy research. An extract of the results of the FATEALLCHEM project will be presented, based on 18 recent papers, published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2006, vol 54 (available on the web of JAFC)

  3. Monitoring of agricultural crops under the influence zone of Armenian nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Armenian Nuclear Power Plant (ANPP) has a number of unique peculirities - placing in densely populated intensive agricultural area and in addition residual water outflow to neighbouring reservoir (Sev Jur), which is utilized exceptionally for irrigation purposes. Monitoring results implemented from 2005 to 2007 under ANPP influence zone are summerized in article. Laboratory and vegetative experiments have been carried out as on wheat crops being irrigated from different sources and cultivated at various distances from ANPP. Monitoring definitely indicates that water of Sev Jur and ANPP result in cytogenetic damages of root meristem cells of wheat crops and increase pollen sterility

  4. A GIS tool for early spatial assessment of radioactive contamination of agricultural crops and soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The issue of radioactive contamination of crops and handling of radioactive materials in agriculture is intensively discussed mainly for the purposes of further use of produce and soils and a possible reduction in potential radioactive contamination of agricultural landscape. The presented tool, 'BiomasaKontaminace' (BiomassContamination), was developed as a module of the ESRI ArcMap 9.2 ArcInfo Geographical Information System. The module makes it possible to produce approximate calculations of parameters of crop production (the amount of live biomass and dry matter in a particular area, relative content of water in biomass, the Leaf Area Index) further used to estimate specific radioactive deposition on the crop and soil surface in an early deposition phase of a nuclear accident in case of both dry and wet deposition. A calculation is made for a whole area of interest, with a spatial character expressed in a particular geographic coordinate system and related to a specific point in time. The module divides surfaces of a particular area of interest into classes according to their level of specific radionuclide deposition in view of their further management and enables approximate estimates of the level of costs required to remove biomass from agricultural areas. It is therefore a complex tool which can be used in decision processes in the event of radiation accidents and for subsequent measures to be adopted for agricultural areas in order to reduce their radioactive contamination. (orig.)

  5. Crop and Tillage Effects on Water Productivity of Dryland Agriculture in Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elke Noellemeyer

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Rising demands for food and uncertainties about climate change call for a paradigm shift in water management with a stronger focus on rainfed agriculture. The objective here was to estimate water productivity of different crops under no-till (NT and conventional till (CT, in order to identify rotations that improve the water productivity of dryland agriculture. We hypothesized that NT and cereal crops would have a positive effect on overall water productivity. Crop yield and water use data were obtained from a 15 year experiment (1993 to 2008 on an entic Haplustoll in the semiarid Pampa, Argentina, with a rotation of wheat (Triticum aestivum L., corn (Zea mays L., sunflower (Helianthus annus, and soybean (Glycine max L. Merr.. The results indicated an improved water productivity of all crops under NT compared with that of CT; however, the response of cereals (corn +1.0 kg ha−1 mm−1, wheat +1.3 kg ha−1 mm−1 was higher than that of sunflower (+0.3 kg ha−1 mm−1 and soybean (+0.5 kg ha−1 mm−1. Crop type had a higher impact on water productivity than did tillage system. In agreement with our hypothesis, cereal crops were more efficient (corn 9.8 and wheat 6.9 kg ha−1 mm−1 compared with soybean 2.4 and sunflower 3.9 kg mm−1, but the economic water productivity of sunflower (0.9 US$ ha−1 mm−1 almost equaled that of wheat (1.1 US$ ha−1mm−1 and corn (1.2 US$ ha−1 mm−1. We concluded that the use of the synergy between NT and water efficient crops could be a promising step towards improving food production in semiarid regions.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-11-01

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

  7. Translocation of Aluminum to Grain Crops Grown in Different Agricultural Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sumaira Khan

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to evaluate the mobility and transport of Aluminum (Al by shoot and grain crops (wheat and maize grown on two different agricultural soil irrigated with water have high (lake water and low levels (canal water of Al. The total and bioavailable fractions (deionized water, 0.11M CH3COOH, 0.05M ethylenediaminetetraaceticacid (EDTA and 0.1 M HCl extractable of Al in both understudied agricultural soils and correlate with respective total Al in the edible parts (grains and non edible parts (Shoots of wheat and maize. The Al content in lake and canal water samples was found in the range of 750 – 1340 and 90 – 150 µg/L respectively. The total and extractable Al in both agricultural soil samples, edible and non edible parts of wheat and maize were analysed by atomic absorption spectrometry after acid digestion in microwave oven. The edible and non edible part of both crops absorbed significantly high levels of Al grown on agricultural soil irrigated with lake water (SILW as compared to those grown on soil irrigated with canal water (SICW had low level of Al (p<0.01. The transfer factor of Al from soils to edible and non edible parts of wheat and maize were also evaluated. It was observed that the bioaccumulation of Al was found to be high in non edible parts of both crops grown in SILW. This study highlights the increased danger of growing food crops in the agricultural land continuously irrigated by Al contaminated lake water.

  8. The introduction of alternative biomass crops in Europe

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pari, L. (Istituto di Meccanica Agraria dell' Universita degli Studi di Bologna (Italy))

    1990-04-01

    The future holds great potential for the development and utilization of agricultural products not only as sources of food, but as raw materials that may be used in the non-food industries - in place of nonrenewable resources - to produce energy. The EC countries depend on imports for 43.5% of their energy.

  9. Alternatives to Antibiotics in Animal Agriculture: An Ecoimmunological View

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yongming Sang

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Ecological immunology (or ecoimmunology is a new discipline in animal health and immunology that extends immunologists’ views into a natural context where animals and humans have co-evolved. Antibiotic resistance and tolerance (ART in bacteria are manifested in antibiosis-surviving subsets of resisters and persisters. ART has emerged though natural evolutionary consequences enriched by human nosocomial and agricultural practices, in particular, wide use of antibiotics that overwhelms other ecological and immunological interactions. Most previous reviews of antibiotic resistance focus on resisters but overlook persisters, although both are fundamental to bacteria survival through antibiosis. Here, we discuss resisters and persisters together to contrast the distinct ecological responses of persisters during antibiotic stress and propose different regimens to eradicate persisters. Our intention is not only to provide an ecoimmunological interpretation, but also to use an ecoimmunological system to categorize available alternatives and promote the discovery of prospective approaches to relieve ART problems within the general scope of improving animal health. Thus, we will categorize available alternatives to antibiotics and envision applications of ecoimmunological tenets to promote related studies in animal production.

  10. Alternatives to antibiotics in animal agriculture: an ecoimmunological view.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sang, Yongming; Blecha, Frank

    2014-01-01

    Ecological immunology (or ecoimmunology) is a new discipline in animal health and immunology that extends immunologists' views into a natural context where animals and humans have co-evolved. Antibiotic resistance and tolerance (ART) in bacteria are manifested in antibiosis-surviving subsets of resisters and persisters. ART has emerged though natural evolutionary consequences enriched by human nosocomial and agricultural practices, in particular, wide use of antibiotics that overwhelms other ecological and immunological interactions. Most previous reviews of antibiotic resistance focus on resisters but overlook persisters, although both are fundamental to bacteria survival through antibiosis. Here, we discuss resisters and persisters together to contrast the distinct ecological responses of persisters during antibiotic stress and propose different regimens to eradicate persisters. Our intention is not only to provide an ecoimmunological interpretation, but also to use an ecoimmunological system to categorize available alternatives and promote the discovery of prospective approaches to relieve ART problems within the general scope of improving animal health. Thus, we will categorize available alternatives to antibiotics and envision applications of ecoimmunological tenets to promote related studies in animal production. PMID:25551290

  11. Single and joint stress of acetochlor and Pb on three agricultural crops in northeast China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHAO Lei; ZHOU Qi-xing; CHEN Su; CUI Shuang; WANG Mei-e

    2007-01-01

    In order to evaluate ecological risk of agrochemicals in agricultural environment, single and joint toxic effects of an important herbicide and a typical heavy metal on root elongation of crops were investigated. Seeds of the three crops including wheat (Triticum aestivum), Chinese cabbage (Brassica pekimensis) and soybean (Glycine max) as the main crops in northeast China were exposed to acetochlor as an herbicide and lead (Pb) as a heavy metal using the pot-culture method, and meadow brown soil as one of the main soils distributed in northeast China was applied in the investigation. The results indicated that the interactive effects of the two pollutants on root elongation of the three crops were very complicated although they had markedly significant (P<0.01) linear interrelationships based on the regression analyses. When the concentration of added Pb2+ reached 200 mg/kg, acetochlor and Pb had an antagonistic effect on the inhibition of root elongation of the three crops. However, acetochlor and Pb had significantly (P<0.05) synergic effects on the inhibition of root elongation when concentration of added Pb2+ was up to 1000 mg/kg. At the low concentration of added Pb, joint toxicity of acetochlor and Pb was more dependent on the concentration of Pb. Among the three crops, wheat was the most sensitive to the toxicity of Pb and Chinese cabbage was the most sensitive to the toxicity of acetochlor.

  12. Effects of alternative furrow irrigation parameters on pesticide movement in cropped areas in Utah

    OpenAIRE

    Requena, Antonio Maria; Ranjha, Ahmad Yar; Peralta, R C; Deer, Howard M.; Ehteshami, Majid; Hill, Robert W.

    1990-01-01

    Production of adequate supplies of food and fiber currently requires that pesticides be used to limit crop losses caused by insects, pathogens, weeds and other pests. Although pesticides are necessary in today' s agriculture, they can be a serious problem if they reach and contaminate ground water, especially where drinking water needs are met by ground water. The relative reduction of potential ground-water contamination due to agricultural use of pesticides was analyzed for particular sites...

  13. Crop Management as an Agricultural Adaptation to Climate Change in Early Modern Era: A Comparative Study of Eastern and Western Europe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qing Pei

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Effective adaptation determines agricultural vulnerability to climate change, especially in the pre-industrial era. Crop management as an agricultural adaptation to climate change in recent human history, however, has rarely been systematically evaluated. Using Europe as our study area, we statistically compared yield ratio of wheat, rye, barley, and oats (an important performance indicator of an agrarian economy between Eastern and Western Europe in AD 1500–1800. In particular, a statistical comparison was made of crop yield ratio in the two regions during the warm agricultural recovery period AD 1700–1800. The general trend of crop yield in Eastern and Western Europe basically followed the alternation of climatic epochs, in which the extreme cooling period in AD 1560–1660 drastically reduced the crop yield ratio. The yield ratio of rye in Eastern and Western Europe was very similar throughout the entire study period. However, the yield ratio of wheat, barley, and oats showed different patterns in the two regions and increased drastically in Western Europe in the warm agricultural recovery period, which might have contributed to rapid socio-economic development in Western Europe and eventually the East–West Divide in Europe in the following centuries.

  14. Impact of Agricultural Extension Services on Technology Adoption and Crops Yield: Empirical Evidence from Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akhter Ali

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The present study was carried out in the rice-wheat area of Pakistani Punjab. The data for the study was collected from three main districts of central Punjab Province i.e. Gujranwala, Sheikhupura and Hafizabad. In total 234 farmers were interviewed. The impact of agricultural extension services was estimated on adoption of new improved technologies and crop yields. The propensity score matching approach for impact evaluation was employed in the current study to correct for potential sample selection biasedness that may arise due to systematic differences between the farmers having benefited from agricultural extension services and not benefited from agricultural extension services. The empirical results indicate that agricultural extension services play a significant role in adoption of improved agricultural technologies like laser leveling, rice and wheat varieties. The farmers having benefitted from agricultural extension services were also getting higher rice and wheat yields. The results also indicates that mostly the large farmers are getting benefits from agricultural extension services and small scale farmers have less access to agricultural extension services.

  15. How can we harness quantitative genetic variation in crop root systems for agricultural improvement?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Topp, Christopher N; Bray, Adam L; Ellis, Nathanael A; Liu, Zhengbin

    2016-03-01

    Root systems are a black box obscuring a comprehensive understanding of plant function, from the ecosystem scale down to the individual. In particular, a lack of knowledge about the genetic mechanisms and environmental effects that condition root system growth hinders our ability to develop the next generation of crop plants for improved agricultural productivity and sustainability. We discuss how the methods and metrics we use to quantify root systems can affect our ability to understand them, how we can bridge knowledge gaps and accelerate the derivation of structure-function relationships for roots, and why a detailed mechanistic understanding of root growth and function will be important for future agricultural gains. PMID:26911925

  16. Crop Breeding for Low Input Agriculture: A Sustainable Response to Feed a Growing World Population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vagner A. Benedito

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available World population is projected to reach its maximum (~10 billion people by the year 2050. This 45% increase of the current world population (approaching seven billion people will boost the demand for food and raw materials. However, we live in a historical moment when supply of phosphate, water, and oil are at their peaks. Modern agriculture is fundamentally based on varieties bred for high performance under high input systems (fertilizers, water, oil, pesticides, which generally do not perform well under low-input situations. We propose a shift of research goals and plant breeding objectives from high-performance agriculture at high-energy input to those with an improved rationalization between yield and energy input. Crop breeding programs that are more focused on nutrient economy and local environmental fitness will help reduce energy demands for crop production while still providing adequate amounts of high quality food as global resources decline and population is projected to increase.

  17. Effect of gamma irradiation on the germination and growth of certain agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gamma irradiation has been found to be very useful for sterilization in medicine and preservation of food and cereals in nutrition and agriculture. This investigation was carried out to determine the effect of gamma irradiation on the subsequent germination and growth of irradiated seeds. Results show that irradiation of maize, okra and groundnut needed for planting is safe. However, the study reveals that the number of germinated seeds and the growth rate for the crops decrease with increase in the radiation dose the seeds were exposed to. A third degree polynomial equation was generated for each of the three crops from graphs to enable the determination of exposure dose a seed should be subjected to if a certain percentage of germination is desired. A chart of percentage germination of seeds versus exposure dose is also presented as a quick guide to farmers, policy makers and agricultural institutions. (author)

  18. RISK ASSESSMENT OF THE MAIN CROPS FROM THE AGRICULTURAL VEGATABLE PRODUCTION IN ROMANIA AND IN TELEORMAN COUNTY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mara Florica

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Knowledge of the indicators that are characterizing agriculture vegetable production is a factor of risk management at all levels where decisions regarding agriculture are taken. The fourth crops analyzed wheat, barley, corn and sunflower occupies large areas both at country level and at the Teleorman County. The study revealed large oscillations of the medium productions and of the purchase prices of these crops which have a great influence on the economic conditions and the living standards of the population. In order to minimize these effects is highlighted the need to improve the management of these crops through applied technology and crop insurance.

  19. The Joint Experiment for Crop Assessment and Monitoring (JECAM) Initiative: Developing methods and best practices for global agricultural monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Champagne, C.; Jarvis, I.; Defourny, P.; Davidson, A.

    2014-12-01

    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.

  20. Comparison of Soil Respiration in Typical Conventional and New Alternative Cereal Cropping Systems on the North China Plain

    OpenAIRE

    Gao, B; Ju, X.T.; Su, F; Gao, F. B.; Q. S. Cao; Oenema, O.; P. Christie; Chen, X. P.; F. S. Zhang

    2013-01-01

    We monitored soil respiration (Rs), soil temperature (T) and volumetric water content (VWC%) over four years in one typical conventional and four alternative cropping systems to understand Rs in different cropping systems with their respective management practices and environmental conditions. The control was conventional double-cropping system (winter wheat and summer maize in one year - Con. W/M). Four alternative cropping systems were designed with optimum water and N management, i.e. opti...

  1. Estimating Hydrologic Fluxes, Crop Water Use, and Agricultural Land Area in China using Data Assimilation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Tiziana; McLaughlin, Dennis B.; Hoisungwan, Piyatida

    2016-04-01

    Crop production has significantly altered the terrestrial environment by changing land use and by altering the water cycle through both co-opted rainfall and surface water withdrawals. As the world's population continues to grow and individual diets become more resource-intensive, the demand for food - and the land and water necessary to produce it - will continue to increase. High-resolution quantitative data about water availability, water use, and agricultural land use are needed to develop sustainable water and agricultural planning and policies. However, existing data covering large areas with high resolution are susceptible to errors and can be physically inconsistent. China is an example of a large area where food demand is expected to increase and a lack of data clouds the resource management dialogue. Some assert that China will have insufficient land and water resources to feed itself, posing a threat to global food security if they seek to increase food imports. Others believe resources are plentiful. Without quantitative data, it is difficult to discern if these concerns are realistic or overly dramatized. This research presents a quantitative approach using data assimilation techniques to characterize hydrologic fluxes, crop water use (defined as crop evapotranspiration), and agricultural land use at 0.5 by 0.5 degree resolution and applies the methodology in China using data from around the year 2000. The approach uses the principles of water balance and of crop water requirements to assimilate existing data with a least-squares estimation technique, producing new estimates of water and land use variables that are physically consistent while minimizing differences from measured data. We argue that this technique for estimating water fluxes and agricultural land use can provide a useful basis for resource management modeling and policy, both in China and around the world.

  2. Cholinesterase Research Outreach Project (CROP): measuring cholinesterase activity and pesticide use in an agricultural community

    OpenAIRE

    Cotton, Jacqueline; Lewandowski, Paul; Brumby, Susan

    2015-01-01

    Background Australian farmers and their workers are exposed to a wide variety of pesticides. Organophosphate (OP) insecticides are a widely used class of pesticide used for animal husbandry practices (Naphthalophos for sheep dipping, jetting and drench), crop production for pest control (Dimethoate) and in public health (Maldison for head lice). Acute poisonings with this class of insecticide are reported among agricultural workers and children around the globe, due to the inhibition of acety...

  3. Crop type influences edge effects on the reproduction of songbirds in sagebrush habitat near agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Elly C. Knight; Nancy A. Mahony; Green, David J.

    2014-01-01

    Extensive fragmentation of the sagebrush shrubsteppe of western North America could be contributing to observed population declines of songbirds in sagebrush habitat. We examined whether habitat fragmentation impacts the reproduction of songbirds in sagebrush edge habitat near agriculture, and if potential impacts vary depending on the adjacent crop type. Specifically, we evaluated whether nest abundance and nest survival varied between orchard edge habitat, vineyard edge habitat, and interio...

  4. Response to issues on GM agriculture in Africa: Are transgenic crops safe?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adenle, Ademola A

    2011-01-01

    The controversies surrounding transgenic crops, often called Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), call for a need to raise the level of public awareness of Genetic Modification (GM) technology in Africa. This should be accomplished by educating the public about the potential benefits and risks that may be associated with this new technology. In the last 15 years, GM crop producing countries have benefited from adoption of this new technology in the form of improved crop productivity, food security, and quality of life. The increased income to resource-poor farmers is a key benefit at the individual level especially as most countries using this technology are in the developing world, including three African countries (South Africa, Burkina Faso and Egypt). Despite clear benefits to countries and farmers who grow GMOs, many people are concerned about suspected potential risks associated with GMOs. This sparks debate as to whether GM technology should be adopted or not. Given the concerns regarding the safety of GMO products, thorough scientific investigation of safe application of GMOs is required. The objective of this paper is to respond to the issues of GM agriculture in Africa and some of the issues surrounding the adoption of GM crops between developed and developing countries. In this article, I analyse relevant papers relating to the adoption of GM technology particularly in developing countries including the few African countries that have adopted GM crops. The issues discussed span a wide range including: safety; potential benefits and risks; disputes between the United States of America (USA) and the European Union (EU) over adoption of GM crops with a focus on Africa continent. This article is concluded by summarising the issues raised and how GM technology can be adopted for agricultural development in Africa. PMID:21981823

  5. Response to issues on GM agriculture in Africa: Are transgenic crops safe?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adenle Ademola A

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The controversies surrounding transgenic crops, often called Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs, call for a need to raise the level of public awareness of Genetic Modification (GM technology in Africa. This should be accomplished by educating the public about the potential benefits and risks that may be associated with this new technology. In the last 15 years, GM crop producing countries have benefited from adoption of this new technology in the form of improved crop productivity, food security, and quality of life. The increased income to resource-poor farmers is a key benefit at the individual level especially as most countries using this technology are in the developing world, including three African countries (South Africa, Burkina Faso and Egypt. Despite clear benefits to countries and farmers who grow GMOs, many people are concerned about suspected potential risks associated with GMOs. This sparks debate as to whether GM technology should be adopted or not. Given the concerns regarding the safety of GMO products, thorough scientific investigation of safe application of GMOs is required. The objective of this paper is to respond to the issues of GM agriculture in Africa and some of the issues surrounding the adoption of GM crops between developed and developing countries. In this article, I analyse relevant papers relating to the adoption of GM technology particularly in developing countries including the few African countries that have adopted GM crops. The issues discussed span a wide range including: safety; potential benefits and risks; disputes between the United States of America (USA and the European Union (EU over adoption of GM crops with a focus on Africa continent. This article is concluded by summarising the issues raised and how GM technology can be adopted for agricultural development in Africa.

  6. Feasibility study for anaerobic digestion of agricultural crop residues. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashare, E.; Buivid, M. G.; Wilson, E. H.

    1979-10-01

    This study provides cost estimates for the pretreatment/digestion of crop residues to fuel gas. Agricultural statistics indicate that the crop residues wheat straw, corn stover, and rice straw are available in sufficient quantity to provide meaningful supplies of gas. Engineering economic analyses were performed for digestion of sheat straw, corn stover, and rice straw for small farm, cooperative, and industrial scales. The results of the analyses indicate that the production of fuel gas from these residues is, at best, economically marginal, unless a credit can be obtained for digester effluent. The use of pretreatment can double the fuel gas output but will not be economically justifiable unless low chemical requirements or low-cost chemicals can be utilized. Use of low-cost hole-in-the-ground batch digestion results in improved economics for the small farm size digestion system, but not for the cooperative and industrial size systems. Recommendations arising from this study are continued development of autohydrolysis and chemical pretreatment of agricultural crop residues to improve fuel gas yields in an economically feasible manner; development of a low-cost controlled landfill batch digestion process for small farm applications; and determination of crop residue digestion by-product values for fertilizer and refeed.

  7. Feasibility study for anaerobic digestion of agricultural crop residues. Dynatech report No. 1935

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashare, E.; Buivid, M. G.; Wilson, E. H.

    1979-07-31

    The objective of this study was to provide cost estimates for the pretreatment/digestion of crop residues to fuel gas. A review of agricultural statistics indicated that the crop residues wheat straw, corn stover, and rice straw are available in sufficient quantity to provide meaningful supplies of gas. Engineering economic analyses were performed for digestion of wheat straw, corn stover, and rice straw for small farm-, cooperative-, and industrial scales. The small farm scale processed the residue from an average size US farm (400 acres), and the other sizes were two and three orders of magnitude greater. The results of the analyses indicate that the production of fuel gas from these residues is, at best, economically marginal, unless a credit can be obtained for digester effluent. The use of pretreatment can double the fuel gas output but will not be economically justifiable unless low chemical requirements or low cost chemicals can be utilized. Additional development is necessary in this area. Use of low cost hole-in-the-ground batch digestion results in improved economics for the small farm size digestion system, but not for the cooperative and industrial size systems. Recommendations arising from this study are continued development of autohydrolysis and chemical pretreatment of agricultural crop residues to improve fuel gas yields in an economically feasible manner; development of a low cost controlled landfill batch digestion process for small farm applications; and determination of crop residue digestion by-product values for fertilizer and refeed.

  8. Agricultural crop mapping and classification by Landsat images to evaluate water use in the Lake Urmia basin, North-west Iran

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fazel, Nasim; Norouzi, Hamid; Madani, Kaveh; Kløve, Bjørn

    2016-04-01

    Lake Urmia, once one of the largest hypersaline lakes in the world has lost more than 90% of its surface body mainly due to the intensive expansion of agriculture, using more than 90% of all water in the region. Access to accurate and up-to-date information on the extent and distribution of individual crop types, associated with land use changes and practices, has significant value in intensively agricultural regions. Explicit information of croplands can be useful for sustainable water resources, land and agriculture planning and management. Remote sensing, has been proven to be a more cost-effective alternative to the traditional statistically-based ground surveys for crop coverage areas that are costly and provide insufficient information. Satellite images along with ground surveys can provide the necessary information of spatial coverage and spectral responses of croplands for sustainable agricultural management. This study strives to differentiate different crop types and agricultural practices to achieve a higher detailed crop map of the Lake Urmia basin. The mapping approach consists of a two-stage supervised classification of multi-temporal multi-spectral high resolution images obtained from Landsat imagery archive. Irrigated and non-irrigated croplands and orchards were separated from other major land covers (urban, ranges, bare-lands, and water) in the region by means of maximum Likelihood supervised classification method. The field data collected during 2015 and land use maps generated in 2007 and Google Earth comparisons were used to form a training data set to perform the supervised classification. In the second stage, non-agricultural lands were masked and the supervised classification was applied on the Landsat images stack to identify seven major croplands in the region (wheat and barley, beetroot, corn, sunflower, alfalfa, vineyards, and apple orchards). The obtained results can be of significant value to the Urmia Lake restoration efforts which

  9. Multi-criteria evaluation of the alternative fodder crops use in the Lower Savinja Valley

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alenka Jelen

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available From the 19th century onwards, with the intensification of livestock production the demand for meat products is increasing. For animal feed are primarily used plants that allow maximum yield per hectare. Among them, the dominant crop is silage maize but, it is very vulnerable crop due to water shortages and heat waves during the peak growing season. In this article, we are looking for opportunities to use other fodder crops as alternative to silage maize, especially cereals and fodder legumes.

  10. Effectiveness of alternative management scenarios on the sediment load in a Mediterranean agricultural watershed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ossama M. M. Abdelwahab

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The Annualised Agricultural Non-point Source model was used to evaluate the effectiveness of different management practices to control the soil erosion and sediment load in the Carapelle watershed, a Mediterranean medium-size watershed (506 km2 located in Apulia, Southern Italy. The model was previously calibrated and validated using five years of runoff and sediment load data measured at a monitoring station located at Ordona - Ponte dei Sauri Bridge. A total of 36 events were used to estimate the performance of the model during the period 2007-2011. The model performed well in predicting runoff, as the high values of the coefficients of efficiency and determination during the validation process showed. The peak flows predictions were satisfactory especially for the high flow events; the prediction capability of sediment load was good, even if a slight over-estimation was observed. Simulations of alternative management practices show that converting the most eroding cropland cells (13.5% of the catchment area to no tillage would reduce soil erosion by 30%, while converting them to grass or forest would reduce soil erosion by 36.5% in both cases. A crop rotation of wheat and a forage crop can also provide an effective way for soil erosion control as it reduces erosion by 69%. Those results can provide a good comparative analysis for conservation planners to choose the best scenarios to be adopted in the watershed to achieve goals in terms of soil conservation and water quality.

  11. Interaction of turbine-generated turbulence with agricultural crops: Conceptual framework and preliminary results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takle, E. S.; Rajewski, D. A.; Segal, M.; Elmore, R.; Hatfield, J.; Prueger, J. H.; Taylor, S. E.

    2009-12-01

    The US Midwest is a unique location for wind power production because wind farms in this region, unlike any other, are co-located within major agricultural production systems that are among the most highly productive in the world. Iowa has over 3,000 MW of installed power in wind farms typically consisting of 75-120 turbines positioned within agricultural fields with irregular spacing but inter-turbine distances in some cases less than 300 m. Wind turbines extract energy from the ambient flow and change mean and turbulent characteristics of wind flow over and within the crop canopy. Turbulent exchange of air from within the crop canopy regulates vertical fluxes of heat, moisture, momentum, and CO2. Changes in wind speed and turbulence structure by wind farms and isolated wind turbines will influence crop growth, productivity, and seed quality in unknown ways. For instance, enhanced vertical fluxes of heat and moisture may help cool the crop on hot summer days (beneficial) but may enhance loss of soil moisture (detrimental). Faster drying of dew from the crop in the morning reduces leaf wetness, which is a condition favoring growth of fungus, mold and toxins. Corn and soybeans typically draw down ambient CO2 levels by 15-20% during the day in the peak growing season, providing an opportunity to enhance downward fluxes of CO2 into the crop canopy by turbine-induced turbulence. Reduction of high winds and resulting leaf shredding and stalk lodging are documented positive effects of agricultural shelterbelts and may be benefits of turbines as well. Enhanced surface evaporation during fall dry-down would improve seed readiness for storage and reduce artificial drying costs. Modification of surface wind convergence/divergence patterns may enhance convection and change rainfall patterns and modify snow deposition, melting, and soil-moisture-recharge in winter. Wind machines are widely used in orchards and vineyards for avoiding killing freezes, but turbine benefits for

  12. Rice Ratoon Crop: A Sustainable Rice Production System for Tropical Hill Agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Golam Faruq

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Increasing and sustainable production of rice in tropical hill area is facing various problems where rice ratooning can overcome the limitations. In this study; 22 rice entries were transplanted into experimental tank placed in the hill slope following Completely Randomized Design with five replications to asses’ agronomic performance of main crop and ratoon crop where Entry 13 demonstrated highest grain yield per plant (42.06 ± 1.2 gm as main crop, as well as ratoon crop (3.37 ± 0.28 gm; Entry 19 produced lowest grain yield per plant (5.01 ± 0.31 gm as main crop and Entry 31 as ratoon crop (0.47 ± 0.03 gm. The grain yield per plant of both the main and ratoon crop demonstrated significant (** at 5% level and *** at 1% level positive correlation with number of tiller per plant (0.64 ** and 0.52; number of fertile tiller per plant (0.66 ** and 0.63 **; grain per panicle (0.72 ** and 0.53; fertile grain per panicle (0.80 *** and 0.63 and thousand-grain weight (0.66 ** and 0.54. The Duncan Multiple Range test and Analysis of Variance also confirmed the different grouping and significant differences of productivity and agronomic performances of the entries. The information of this investigation will helps the rice breeder as well as marginal rice farmers to consider rice ratooning as an important practice for sustainable rice production in tropical agriculture system for maximum gains.

  13. Changes in climate will modify the geography of crop suitability: agricultural biodiversity can help with adaptation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A Lane

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Climate change will cause shifts in areas suitable for cultivation of a wide range of crops. We used current and projected future climate data for ~2055, and the Ecocrop model to predict the impact of climate change on areas suitable for all crops listed in Table 1 of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and other major staple and cash crops. Most detrimentally affected in terms of reduction of suitable areas for a range of crops will be sub-Saharan Africa and the Caribbean, areas with the least capacity to cope. Conversely, Europe and North America will see an increase in area suitable for cultivation. These regions have the greatest capacity to manage climate change impacts. To minimize the impacts of these climate and other environmental changes, it will be crucial to breed new varieties for improved resistance to abiotic and biotic stresses is. Plant breeders need to increase their attention to breeding varieties that have greater tolerance to local abiotic stresses such as drought, flooding and extreme temperatures as well as continuing to breed for resistance to pests and diseases. Priorities for breeding should consider the magnitude of the predicted impacts on productivity of the crop, the number of people who depend on the crop and their level of poverty, and the opportunities for significant gains through breeding. Local knowledge of ecological interactions, traditional varieties, and the genetic diversity in the wild relatives of domesticated crops provide rich resources on which to build priority breeding programmes for climate change-tolerant varieties.

  14. Agricultural price and income policy in the EC : alternative policies and their implications

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meester, G.

    1980-01-01

    Alternative forms of income policy without direct supply control. Alternative forms of income policy with direct supply control: quota arrangements. The influence of EC policy on the world market prices of agricultural produce

  15. Researching alternative, sustainable agricultural systems: A modelling approach by examples from Denmark

    OpenAIRE

    Alrøe, Hugo Fjelsted; Kristensen, Erik Steen

    2000-01-01

    In recent decades agriculture has undergone rapid technological and structural changes. This development has raised concerns about the sustainability of modern agriculture and motivated an interest in alternative and, perhaps, more sustainable agricultural systems. Agriculture involves both ecological and social systems, and research in agricultural systems therefore faces the dual challenge of understanding complex agro-ecosystem interactions and handling the involvement of human actors, the...

  16. Sustainability of energy crops. Four papers by the Centre for Agriculture and Environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Between 1994 and 1996 CLM developed a method for assessing the ecological and economic sustainability of producing and using energy from agricultural and forest biomass. The method has much in common with environmental life cycle assessment (LCA). CLM has also co-ordinated a concerted action called 'Environmental aspects of biomass production and routes for European energy supply'. LCA is at present the best available instrument for assessing the ecological sustainability of energy crops. CLM focused on three topics disseminating the results of the concerted action; updating the work on bioethanol, and proposals for new financial instruments. The results are presented in this report. First, the results from the concerted action and work carried out by CLM were disseminated. Papers were presented at the international conference on 'Implementation of solid biofuels for carbon dioxide mitigation', 29-30 September 1997, Uppsala, Sweden, and at the international workshop on 'Environmental aspects of energy crop production', 9-10 October 1997, Brasimone, Italy. In addition, a paper was written on the need to co-ordinate policy options to stimulate the production and use of energy crops from an energy, agricultural and environmental point of view. Second, a study on bioethanol was carried out in which data obtained elsewhere on the use of bioethanol as a transport fuel were revised and updated. The sustainability of bioethanol production from sugar beet was compared with that of bioethanol from winter wheat. Using bioethanol from sugar beet replaces more fossil energy than bioethanol from winter wheat. For both crops, the costs per ton avoided CO2 decrease over time to 2010, but are still higher than electricity routes. The third action was the development of proposals for new financial instruments to stimulate energy production from biomass in the agricultural and forestry sector. This proposal was presented at the ALTENER Seminar on 'Financial incentives for

  17. Influence of conservation agriculture and tillage on soil quality in selected crop production systems in the Philippines

    OpenAIRE

    Ella, Victor B.; Manuel R. Reyes; Padre, R.; Mercado, Agustin R., Jr.

    2014-01-01

    The presentation describes a study to evaluate the influence of conservation agriculture and tillage on selected physical and chemical soil quality parameters in selected upland crop production systems in the Philippines

  18. Socio-economic characterization of integrated cropping systems in urban and peri-urban agriculture of Faisalabad, Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shoaib Ur Rehman

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Faisalabad city is surrounded by agricultural lands, where farmers are growing vegetables, grain crops, and fodder for auto-consumption and local marketing. To study the socioeconomic impact and resource use in these urban and peri-urban agricultural production (UPA systems, a baseline survey was conducted during 2009–2010. A total of 140 households were selected using a stratified sampling method and interviewed with a structured questionnaire. The results revealed that 96 % of the households rely on agriculture as their main occupation. Thirty percent of the households were owners of the land and the rest cultivated either rented or sharecropped land. Most of the families (70 % were headed by a member with primary education, and only 10 % of the household head had a secondary school certificate. Irrigationwater was obtained from waste water (37 %, canals (27 %, and mixed alternative sources (36 %. A total of 35 species were cultivated in the UPA systems of which were 65% vegetables, 15% grain and fodder crops, and 5% medicinal plants. Fifty-nine percent of the households cultivated wheat, mostly for auto-consumption. The 51 % of the respondents grew cauliflower (Brassica oleracea L. and gourds (Cucurbitaceae in the winter and summer seasons, respectively. Group marketing was uncommon and most of the farmers sold their produce at the farm gate (45 % and on local markets (43 %. Seeds and fertilizers were available from commission agents and dealers on a credit basis with the obligation to pay by harvested produce. A major problem reported by the UPA farmers of Faisalabad was the scarcity of high quality irrigation water, especially during the hot dry summer months, in addition to lacking adequate quantities of mineral fertilizers and other inputs during sowing time. Half of the respondents estimated their daily income to be less than 1.25 US$ and spent almost half of it on food. Monthly average household income and expenses were 334 and 237 US

  19. THE PROSPECTS OF AGRICULTURAL ADAPTATION TO CLIMATE CHANGE: CLIMATE-TECHNOLOGY INTERACTION IN RICE -WHEAT CROPPING SYSTEM IN NEPAL

    OpenAIRE

    Chhetri, Netra B.; Shrestha, Sundar S.

    2004-01-01

    We use panel data from Nepal to examine the effect of climate in inducing technology to understand potential agricultural adaptation to climate change in rice and wheat crops. We find different degree of climate-technology interaction in the productivity of two crops.

  20. Hybridization of powdery mildew strains gives rise to pathogens on novel agricultural crop species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menardo, Fabrizio; Praz, Coraline R; Wyder, Stefan; Ben-David, Roi; Bourras, Salim; Matsumae, Hiromi; McNally, Kaitlin E; Parlange, Francis; Riba, Andrea; Roffler, Stefan; Schaefer, Luisa K; Shimizu, Kentaro K; Valenti, Luca; Zbinden, Helen; Wicker, Thomas; Keller, Beat

    2016-02-01

    Throughout the history of agriculture, many new crop species (polyploids or artificial hybrids) have been introduced to diversify products or to increase yield. However, little is known about how these new crops influence the evolution of new pathogens and diseases. Triticale is an artificial hybrid of wheat and rye, and it was resistant to the fungal pathogen powdery mildew (Blumeria graminis) until 2001 (refs. 1,2,3). We sequenced and compared the genomes of 46 powdery mildew isolates covering several formae speciales. We found that B. graminis f. sp. triticale, which grows on triticale and wheat, is a hybrid between wheat powdery mildew (B. graminis f. sp. tritici) and mildew specialized on rye (B. graminis f. sp. secalis). Our data show that the hybrid of the two mildews specialized on two different hosts can infect the hybrid plant species originating from those two hosts. We conclude that hybridization between mildews specialized on different species is a mechanism of adaptation to new crops introduced by agriculture. PMID:26752267

  1. From rainfed agriculture to stress-avoidance irrigation: II. Sustainability, crop yield, and profitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vico, Giulia; Porporato, Amilcare

    2011-02-01

    The optimality of irrigation strategies may be sought with respect to a number of criteria, including water requirements, crop yield, and profitability. To explore the suitability of different demand-based irrigation strategies, we link the probabilistic description of irrigation requirements under stochastic hydro-climatic conditions, provided in a companion paper [Vico G, Porporato A. From rainfed agriculture to stress-avoidance irrigation: I. A generalized irrigation scheme with stochastic soil moisture. Adv Water Resour 2011;34(2):263-71], to crop-yield and economic analyses. Water requirements, application efficiency, and investment costs of different irrigation methods, such as surface, sprinkler and drip irrigation systems, are described via a unified conceptual and theoretical approach, which includes rainfed agriculture and stress-avoidance irrigation as extreme cases. This allows us to analyze irrigation strategies with respect to sustainability, productivity, and economic return, using the same framework, and quantify them as a function of climate, crop, and soil parameters. We apply our results to corn ( Zea mays), a food staple and biofuel source, which is currently mainly irrigated through surface systems. As our analysis shows, micro-irrigation maximizes water productivity, but more traditional solutions may be more profitable at least in some contexts.

  2. Analyzing Crop Revenue Safety Net Program Alternatives and Impacts on Producers and Program Costs

    OpenAIRE

    Jansen, Jim A.; Lubben, Bradley D.; Stockton, Matthew C.

    2012-01-01

    This study evaluates the policy effects of alternative program designs for federal revenue-based farm income safety net programs. Eight representative farms across Nebraska are used to stochastically simulate the financial impact of changing the current farm crop revenue-based safety net with a state revenue trigger against potential alternative programs involving guarantees at the district, county, or farm level. Results indicate that decreasing the aggregation of the revenue guarantee incre...

  3. Assessment of Climate Change Impacts on Agricultural Water Demands and Crop Yields in California's Central Valley

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tansey, M. K.; Flores-Lopez, F.; Young, C. A.; Huntington, J. L.

    2012-12-01

    Long term planning for the management of California's water resources requires assessment of the effects of future climate changes on both water supply and demand. Considerable progress has been made on the evaluation of the effects of future climate changes on water supplies but less information is available with regard to water demands. Uncertainty in future climate projections increases the difficulty of assessing climate impacts and evaluating long range adaptation strategies. Compounding the uncertainty in the future climate projections is the fact that most readily available downscaled climate projections lack sufficient meteorological information to compute evapotranspiration (ET) by the widely accepted ASCE Penman-Monteith (PM) method. This study addresses potential changes in future Central Valley water demands and crop yields by examining the effects of climate change on soil evaporation, plant transpiration, growth and yield for major types of crops grown in the Central Valley of California. Five representative climate scenarios based on 112 bias corrected spatially downscaled CMIP 3 GCM climate simulations were developed using the hybrid delta ensemble method to span a wide range future climate uncertainty. Analysis of historical California Irrigation Management Information System meteorological data was combined with several meteorological estimation methods to compute future solar radiation, wind speed and dew point temperatures corresponding to the GCM projected temperatures and precipitation. Future atmospheric CO2 concentrations corresponding to the 5 representative climate projections were developed based on weighting IPCC SRES emissions scenarios. The Land, Atmosphere, and Water Simulator (LAWS) model was used to compute ET and yield changes in the early, middle and late 21st century for 24 representative agricultural crops grown in the Sacramento, San Joaquin and Tulare Lake basins. Study results indicate that changes in ET and yield vary

  4. Energy and greenhouse-gas emissions in irrigated agriculture of SE (southeast) Spain. Effects of alternative water supply scenarios

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Global warming is leading to a water resources decrease in the Mediterranean basin, where future farming resilience depends on incorporating alternative water sources and improving water-energy use efficiency. This paper assesses water and energy consumption when natural water sources are partially replaced by desalinated sea water. Initially, energy consumption, water supply and GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions were recorded for the current farming practices in SE (southeast) Spain. The results of our study indicate that citrus orchards have the lowest energy consumption and GHG emissions. Annual vegetables were the least energy efficient crops. Subsequently, two alternative water supply scenarios were analysed, in which the reduction of natural water resources associated to climate change was compensated with desalinated sea water. The use of 16.8% of desalinated seawater would increase energy consumption by 32.4% and GHG emissions by 19.6%, whereas for the use of 26.5% of desalinated seawater such increases would amount to 50.0% and 30.3%, respectively. Therefore maintaining irrigated agriculture in water-stressed regions by incorporating high energy demanding non-traditional water sources could negatively contribute to combat global warming. - Highlights: • Water supply, energy consumption and GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions in irrigated agriculture are very connected. • The use of desalinated sea water will increase the energy consumption, and GHG emissions will rise. • The use of non-traditional water resources enhances global warming processes. • Citrus orchards are the less sensitive crop to alternative water supplied scenarios. • Artichoke is the most sensitive crop to alternative water supplied scenarios

  5. Assessment of energy crops alternative to maize for biogas production in the Greater Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Frédéric; Gerin, Patrick A; Noo, Anaïs; Lemaigre, Sébastien; Stilmant, Didier; Schmit, Thomas; Leclech, Nathael; Ruelle, Luc; Gennen, Jerome; von Francken-Welz, Herbert; Foucart, Guy; Flammang, Jos; Weyland, Marc; Delfosse, Philippe

    2014-08-01

    The biomethane yield of various energy crops, selected among potential alternatives to maize in the Greater Region, was assessed. The biomass yield, the volatile solids (VS) content and the biochemical methane potential (BMP) were measured to calculate the biomethane yield per hectare of all plant species. For all species, the dry matter biomass yield and the VS content were the main factors that influence, respectively, the biomethane yield and the BMP. Both values were predicted with good accuracy by linear regressions using the biomass yield and the VS as independent variable. The perennial crop miscanthus appeared to be the most promising alternative to maize when harvested as green matter in autumn and ensiled. Miscanthus reached a biomethane yield of 5.5 ± 1 × 10(3)m(3)ha(-1) during the second year after the establishment, as compared to 5.3 ± 1 × 10(3)m(3)ha(-1) for maize under similar crop conditions. PMID:24929279

  6. Biochemical production of bioenergy from agricultural crops and residue in Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karimi Alavijeh, Masih; Yaghmaei, Soheila

    2016-06-01

    The present study assessed the potential for biochemical conversion of energy stored in agricultural waste and residue in Iran. The current status of agricultural residue as a source of bioenergy globally and in Iran was investigated. The total number of publications in this field from 2000 to 2014 was about 4294. Iran ranked 21st with approximately 54 published studies. A total of 87 projects have been devised globally to produce second-generation biofuel through biochemical pathways. There are currently no second-generation biorefineries in Iran and agricultural residue has no significant application. The present study determined the amount and types of sustainable agricultural residue and oil-rich crops and their provincial distribution. Wheat, barley, rice, corn, potatoes, alfalfa, sugarcane, sugar beets, apples, grapes, dates, cotton, soybeans, rapeseed, sesame seeds, olives, sunflowers, safflowers, almonds, walnuts and hazelnuts have the greatest potential as agronomic and horticultural crops to produce bioenergy in Iran. A total of 11.33million tonnes (Mt) of agricultural biomass could be collected for production of bioethanol (3.84gigaliters (Gl)), biobutanol (1.07Gl), biogas (3.15billion cubic meters (BCM)), and biohydrogen (0.90BCM). Additionally, about 0.35Gl of biodiesel could be obtained using only 35% of total Iranian oilseed. The potential production capacity of conventional biofuel blends in Iran, environmental and socio-economic impacts including well-to-wheel greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and the social cost of carbon dioxide reduction are discussed. The cost of emissions could decrease up to 55.83% by utilizing E85 instead of gasoline. The possible application of gaseous biofuel in Iran to produce valuable chemicals and provide required energy for crop cultivation is also studied. The energy recovered from biogas produced by wheat residue could provide energy input for 115.62 and 393.12 thousand hectares of irrigated and rain-fed wheat

  7. Alternative agricultures: Emphasis in contributions of the people of field of southwestern sector of Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    It offers a definition of alternative agricultures. Some antecedents are mentioned about the evolution of the Colombian movements from the chemical agriculture toward alternative forms. Some Colombian experiences are enumerated, making emphasis in people of field of the southwestern sector of the country contributions. Some conclusions settle down

  8. Multi-Attribute Modelling of Economic and Ecological Impacts of Agricultural Innovations on Cropping Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Scatasta

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Modeling of economic and ecological impacts of genetically modified crops is a demanding task. We present some models made for the purpose of the ECOGEN project "Soil ecological and economic evaluation of genetically modified crops". One of the goals of the project is to develop a computer-based decision support system for the assessment of economic and ecological impacts of using genetically modified crops, with special emphasis on soil biology and ecology. The decision support system is based on a rule-based model incorporating both economic and ecological criteria. In this paper we present an extension to previous results specifying further two sub-models assessing economic impacts of cropping systems at farm and regional level. Following a real option approach we show how both social and private costs and benefits, both at farm and regional level, can be classified in reversible and irreversible, and what irreversibility means for the size of the uncertainty associated to the adoption of agricultural innovations. All the qualitative models are developed using a qualitative multi-attribute modeling methodology, supported by the software tool DEXi.

  9. Occurrence and potential crop uptake of emerging contaminants and related compounds in an agricultural irrigation network

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Calderon-Preciado, Diana [IDAEA-CSIC, Jordi Girona, 18, E-08034 Barcelona (Spain); Matamoros, Victor, E-mail: victor.matamoros@udg.edu [Department of Chemistry, University of Girona, Campus Montilivi, 17071 Girona (Spain); Bayona, Josep M. [IDAEA-CSIC, Jordi Girona, 18, E-08034 Barcelona (Spain)

    2011-12-15

    Emerging contaminants have received much attention in recent years due to their presence in surface waters, but little attention has been paid to their occurrence in agricultural irrigation waters. This study investigated the occurrence of these compounds in an agricultural irrigation network in northeastern Spain and, for the first time, using two plant uptake models, estimated the concentration of selected micropollutants in crops. The concentration of micropollutants in agricultural irrigation waters ranged from 10 to 5130 ng L{sup -1} and exhibited some attenuation over the course of the irrigation network. Bromoform, chloroform, diclofenac, caffeine, ibuprofen, naproxen, methyl dihydrojasmonate, galaxolide, butylated hydroxytoluene, and butylated hydroxyanisole were the most abundant contaminants (> 200 ng L{sup -1}, on average). The estimated concentration of micropollutants in crops ranged from < 1 to 7677 ng kg{sup -1}, with the neutral compounds being the most abundant. Moreover, the predicted data obtained by fate models generally agreed with experimental data. Finally, human exposure to micropollutants through fruit and vegetable consumption was estimated to be 9.8 {mu}g per person and week ({Sigma} 27 contaminants detected). Further studies are needed to determine the health implications that the presence of these compounds in fruit and vegetables may have for consumers.

  10. Occurrence and potential crop uptake of emerging contaminants and related compounds in an agricultural irrigation network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Emerging contaminants have received much attention in recent years due to their presence in surface waters, but little attention has been paid to their occurrence in agricultural irrigation waters. This study investigated the occurrence of these compounds in an agricultural irrigation network in northeastern Spain and, for the first time, using two plant uptake models, estimated the concentration of selected micropollutants in crops. The concentration of micropollutants in agricultural irrigation waters ranged from 10 to 5130 ng L−1 and exhibited some attenuation over the course of the irrigation network. Bromoform, chloroform, diclofenac, caffeine, ibuprofen, naproxen, methyl dihydrojasmonate, galaxolide, butylated hydroxytoluene, and butylated hydroxyanisole were the most abundant contaminants (> 200 ng L−1, on average). The estimated concentration of micropollutants in crops ranged from −1, with the neutral compounds being the most abundant. Moreover, the predicted data obtained by fate models generally agreed with experimental data. Finally, human exposure to micropollutants through fruit and vegetable consumption was estimated to be 9.8 μg per person and week (Σ 27 contaminants detected). Further studies are needed to determine the health implications that the presence of these compounds in fruit and vegetables may have for consumers.

  11. Classification of crops across heterogeneous agricultural landscape in Kenya using AisaEAGLE imaging spectroscopy data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piiroinen, Rami; Heiskanen, Janne; Mõttus, Matti; Pellikka, Petri

    2015-07-01

    Land use practices are changing at a fast pace in the tropics. In sub-Saharan Africa forests, woodlands and bushlands are being transformed for agricultural use to produce food for the rapidly growing population. The objective of this study was to assess the prospects of mapping the common agricultural crops in highly heterogeneous study area in south-eastern Kenya using high spatial and spectral resolution AisaEAGLE imaging spectroscopy data. Minimum noise fraction transformation was used to pack the coherent information in smaller set of bands and the data was classified with support vector machine (SVM) algorithm. A total of 35 plant species were mapped in the field and seven most dominant ones were used as classification targets. Five of the targets were agricultural crops. The overall accuracy (OA) for the classification was 90.8%. To assess the possibility of excluding the remaining 28 plant species from the classification results, 10 different probability thresholds (PT) were tried with SVM. The impact of PT was assessed with validation polygons of all 35 mapped plant species. The results showed that while PT was increased more pixels were excluded from non-target polygons than from the polygons of the seven classification targets. This increased the OA and reduced salt-and-pepper effects in the classification results. Very high spatial resolution imagery and pixel-based classification approach worked well with small targets such as maize while there was mixing of classes on the sides of the tree crowns.

  12. Cadmium contamination of agricultural soils and crops resulting from sphalerite weathering

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The biogeochemistry and bioavailability of cadmium, released during sphalerite weathering in soils, were investigated under contrasting agricultural scenarios to assess health risks associated with sphalerite dust transport to productive soils from mining. Laboratory experiments (365 d) on temperate and sub-tropical soils amended with sphalerite (−1). Wheat grown in spiked temperate soil accumulated ≈38% (29 μmol kg−1) of the liberated Cd, exceeding food safety limits. In contrast, rice grown in flooded sub-tropical soil accumulated far less Cd (0.60 μmol kg−1) due to neutral soil pH and Cd bioavailability was possibly also controlled by secondary sulfide formation. The results demonstrate long-term release of Cd to soil porewaters during sphalerite weathering. Under oxic conditions, Cd may be sufficiently bioavailable to contaminate crops destined for human consumption; however flooded rice production limits the impact of sphalerite contamination. -- Highlights: • Sphalerite containing cadmium presents a hazard when present in agricultural soils. • Sphalerite dissolution was slow (0.6–1.2% y−1) but constant in contrasting soils. • Cadmium was released during dissolution and was bioavailable to wheat and rice. • Wheat grains accumulated potentially harmful cadmium concentrations. • Flooded paddy (reducing) soils reduced cadmium bioavailability to rice. -- Sphalerite dissolves steadily in oxic agricultural soils and can release highly bioavailable Cd, which may contaminate food crops destined for human consumption

  13. Not all GMOs are crop plants: non-plant GMO applications in agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hokanson, K E; Dawson, W O; Handler, A M; Schetelig, M F; St Leger, R J

    2014-12-01

    Since tools of modern biotechnology have become available, the most commonly applied and often discussed genetically modified organisms are genetically modified crop plants, although genetic engineering is also being used successfully in organisms other than plants, including bacteria, fungi, insects, and viruses. Many of these organisms, as with crop plants, are being engineered for applications in agriculture, to control plant insect pests or diseases. This paper reviews the genetically modified non-plant organisms that have been the subject of permit approvals for environmental release by the United States Department of Agriculture/Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service since the US began regulating genetically modified organisms. This is an indication of the breadth and progress of research in the area of non-plant genetically modified organisms. This review includes three examples of promising research on non-plant genetically modified organisms for application in agriculture: (1) insects for insect pest control using improved vector systems; (2) fungal pathogens of insects to control insect pests; and (3) virus for use as transient-expression vectors for disease control in plants. PMID:24242193

  14. Occurrence and potential crop uptake of emerging contaminants and related compounds in an agricultural irrigation network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calderón-Preciado, Diana; Matamoros, Víctor; Bayona, Josep M

    2011-12-15

    Emerging contaminants have received much attention in recent years due to their presence in surface waters, but little attention has been paid to their occurrence in agricultural irrigation waters. This study investigated the occurrence of these compounds in an agricultural irrigation network in northeastern Spain and, for the first time, using two plant uptake models, estimated the concentration of selected micropollutants in crops. The concentration of micropollutants in agricultural irrigation waters ranged from 10 to 5130 ng L(-1) and exhibited some attenuation over the course of the irrigation network. Bromoform, chloroform, diclofenac, caffeine, ibuprofen, naproxen, methyl dihydrojasmonate, galaxolide, butylated hydroxytoluene, and butylated hydroxyanisole were the most abundant contaminants (>200 ng L(-1), on average). The estimated concentration of micropollutants in crops ranged from micropollutants through fruit and vegetable consumption was estimated to be 9.8 μg per person and week (Σ 27 contaminants detected). Further studies are needed to determine the health implications that the presence of these compounds in fruit and vegetables may have for consumers. PMID:22030249

  15. Transfer of radionuclides from the environment to crops and agricultural products

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The transfer rates of 90Sr, 137Cs, 54Mn, 65Zn, 60Co and 22Na from the irrigation water to different crops, determined by means of experimental models, depend on the mode of conveyance, the water quality, and on the type and portion of the plant in question. In certain cases, the resulting contamination to foodstuffs undergoing irrigation is higher than that of the water. The contamination level of the consumed product also depends on the food processing technology. The monitoring of crops and converted agricultural products is thus of great use for the knowledge of the radiological state of the site. Measurements taken in the environment show that this contamination is very slight. This monitoring is very well accepted by farmers and managers of food product conversion companies, because it provides proof of the quality of their products from the radiological standpoint

  16. Alternative cropping systems can have contrasting effects on various soil-borne diseases : relevance of a systemic analysis in vegetable cropping systems

    OpenAIRE

    Collange, B.; M Navarrete; Montfort, F.; Mateille, Thierry; Tavoillot, Johannes; Martiny, Bernard; Tchamitchian, M.

    2014-01-01

    Vegetable production makes an intensive use of pesticides, and a major challenge is to build alternative cropping systems that can control pests and diseases with fewer uses of chemical products. An on-farm analysis was conducted in Southeast France to assess the efficacy of several cropping systems in simultaneously controlling two major pests: root-knot nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.) and lettuce drop due to Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. Ten cropping systems resulting from the combinations of thre...

  17. Reusable Software and Open Data Incorporate Ecological Understanding To Optimize Agriculture and Improveme Crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeBauer, D.

    2015-12-01

    Humans need a secure and sustainable food supply, and science can help. We have an opportunity to transform agriculture by combining knowledge of organisms and ecosystems to engineer ecosystems that sustainably produce food, fuel, and other services. The challenge is that the information we have. Measurements, theories, and laws found in publications, notebooks, measurements, software, and human brains are difficult to combine. We homogenize, encode, and automate the synthesis of data and mechanistic understanding in a way that links understanding at different scales and across domains. This allows extrapolation, prediction, and assessment. Reusable components allow automated construction of new knowledge that can be used to assess, predict, and optimize agro-ecosystems. Developing reusable software and open-access databases is hard, and examples will illustrate how we use the Predictive Ecosystem Analyzer (PEcAn, pecanproject.org), the Biofuel Ecophysiological Traits and Yields database (BETYdb, betydb.org), and ecophysiological crop models to predict crop yield, decide which crops to plant, and which traits can be selected for the next generation of data driven crop improvement. A next step is to automate the use of sensors mounted on robots, drones, and tractors to assess plants in the field. The TERRA Reference Phenotyping Platform (TERRA-Ref, terraref.github.io) will provide an open access database and computing platform on which researchers can use and develop tools that use sensor data to assess and manage agricultural and other terrestrial ecosystems. TERRA-Ref will adopt existing standards and develop modular software components and common interfaces, in collaboration with researchers from iPlant, NEON, AgMIP, USDA, rOpenSci, ARPA-E, many scientists and industry partners. Our goal is to advance science by enabling efficient use, reuse, exchange, and creation of knowledge.

  18. CropWatch agroclimatic indicators (CWAIs) for weather impact assessment on global agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gommes, René; Wu, Bingfang; Zhang, Ning; Feng, Xueliang; Zeng, Hongwei; Li, Zhongyuan; Chen, Bo

    2016-07-01

    CropWatch agroclimatic indicators (CWAIs) are a monitoring tool developed by the CropWatch global crop monitoring system in the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS; www.cropwatch.com.cn, Wu et al Int J Digital Earth 7(2):113-137, 2014, Wu et al Remote Sens 7:3907-3933, 2015). Contrary to most other environmental and agroclimatic indicators, they are "agronomic value-added", i.e. they are spatial values averaged over agricultural areas only and they include a weighting that enhances the contribution of the areas with the largest production potential. CWAIs can be computed for any time interval (starting from dekads) and yield one synthetic value per variable over a specific area and time interval, for instance a national annual value. Therefore, they are very compatible with socio-economic and other variables that are usually reported at regular time intervals over administrative units, such as national environmental or agricultural statistics. Two of the CWAIs are satellite-based (RAIN and Photosynthetically Active radiation, PAR) while the third is ground based (TEMP, air temperature); capitals are used when specifically referring to CWAIs rather than the climate variables in general. The paper first provides an overview of some common agroclimatic indicators, describing their procedural, systemic and normative features in subsequent sections, following the terminology of Binder et al Environ Impact Assess Rev 30:71-81 (2010). The discussion focuses on the systemic and normative aspects: the CWAIs are assessed in terms of their coherent description of the agroclimatic crop environment, at different spatial scales (systemic). The final section shows that the CWAIs retain key statistical properties of the underlying climate variables and that they can be compared to a reference value and used as monitoring and early warning variables (normative).

  19. Estimating riparian and agricultural evapotranspiration by reference crop evapotranspiration and MODIS Enhanced Vegetation Index

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagler, Pamela L.; Glenn, Edward P.; Nguyen, Uyen; Scott, Russell; Doody, Tania

    2013-01-01

    Dryland river basins frequently support both irrigated agriculture and riparian vegetation and remote sensing methods are needed to monitor water use by both crops and natural vegetation in irrigation districts. We developed an algorithm for estimating actual evapotranspiration (ETa) based on the Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI) from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) sensor on the EOS-1 Terra satellite and locally-derived measurements of reference crop ET (ETo). The algorithm was calibrated with five years of ETa data from three eddy covariance flux towers set in riparian plant associations on the upper San Pedro River, Arizona, supplemented with ETa data for alfalfa and cotton from the literature. The algorithm was based on an equation of the form ETa = ETo [a(1 − e−bEVI) − c], where the term (1 − e−bEVI) is derived from the Beer-Lambert Law to express light absorption by a canopy, with EVI replacing leaf area index as an estimate of the density of light-absorbing units. The resulting algorithm capably predicted ETa across riparian plants and crops (r2 = 0.73). It was then tested against water balance data for five irrigation districts and flux tower data for two riparian zones for which season-long or multi-year ETa data were available. Predictions were within 10% of measured results in each case, with a non-significant (P = 0.89) difference between mean measured and modeled ETa of 5.4% over all validation sites. Validation and calibration data sets were combined to present a final predictive equation for application across crops and riparian plant associations for monitoring individual irrigation districts or for conducting global water use assessments of mixed agricultural and riparian biomes.

  20. Review of anthraquinone applications for pest management and agricultural crop protection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeLiberto, Shelagh T; Werner, Scott J

    2016-10-01

    We have reviewed published anthraquinone applications for international pest management and agricultural crop protection from 1943 to 2016. Anthraquinone (AQ) is commonly found in dyes, pigments and many plants and organisms. Avian repellent research with AQ began in the 1940s. In the context of pest management, AQ is currently used as a chemical repellent, perch deterrent, insecticide and feeding deterrent in many wild birds, and in some mammals, insects and fishes. Criteria for evaluation of effective chemical repellents include efficacy, potential for wildlife hazards, phytotoxicity and environmental persistence. As a biopesticide, AQ often meets these criteria of efficacy for the non-lethal management of agricultural depredation caused by wildlife. We summarize published applications of AQ for the protection of newly planted and maturing crops from pest birds. Conventional applications of AQ-based repellents include preplant seed treatments [e.g. corn (Zea mays L.), rice (Oryza sativa L.), sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.), wheat (Triticum spp.), millet (Panicum spp.), sorghum (Sorghum bicolor L.), pelletized feed and forest tree species] and foliar applications for rice, sunflower, lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.), turf, sugar beets (Beta vulgaris L.), soybean (Glycine max L.), sweet corn and nursery, fruit and nut crops. In addition to agricultural repellent applications, AQ has also been used to treat toxicants for the protection of non-target birds. Few studies have demonstrated AQ repellency in mammals, including wild boar (Sus scrofa, L.), thirteen-lined ground squirrels (Ictidomys tridecemlineatus, Mitchill), black-tailed prairie dogs (Cyomys ludovicainus, Ord.), common voles (Microtus arvalis, Pallas), house mice (Mus musculus, L.), Tristram's jirds (Meriones tristrami, Thomas) and black rats (Rattus rattus L.). Natural sources of AQ and its derivatives have also been identified as insecticides and insect repellents. As a natural or synthetic biopesticide, AQ

  1. A laboratory study of agricultural crop residue combustion in China: Emission factors and emission inventory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hefeng; Ye, Xingnan; Cheng, Tiantao; Chen, Jianmin; Yang, Xin; Wang, Lin; Zhang, Renyi

    The burning of agricultural crop residue represents a major source of trace gases (CO, CO 2, NO, NO 2, and NO x) and particulate matter on a regional and global scale. This study investigates the gaseous and particulate emissions from the burning of rice, wheat and corn straws, which are three major agricultural crop residues in China, using a self-built burning stove and an aerosol chamber. Emission factors of CO 2, CO, NO, NO 2 and NO x were measured to be 791.3, 64.2, 1.02, 0.79 and 1.81 g kg -1 for rice straw, 1557.9, 141.2, 0.79, 0.32 and 1.12 g kg -1 for wheat straw, and 1261.5, 114.7, 0.85, 0.43 and 1.28 g kg -1 for corn straw, respectively. The corresponding emission factors of particle number are 1.8 × 10 13, 1.0 × 10 13, and 1.7 × 10 13 particles kg -1, respectively. The total emissions of CO, CO 2, and NO x from rice, wheat and corn straw burnings in China for the year 2004 were estimated to be 22.59, 252.92, and 0.28 Tg, respectively. The percentages of CO, CO 2, and NO x to the total emissions were 13.9%, 15.3%, and 31.4% for rice straw, 32.9%, 32.5%, and 20.9% for wheat straw, and 53.2%, 52.2%, and 47.6% for corn straw, respectively. In addition, the emission allocations of agricultural crop residue burning were also plotted in different regions of China using a simple geographic information system (GIS).

  2. Determine metrics and set targets for soil quality on agriculture residue and energy crop pathways

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ian Bonner; David Muth

    2013-09-01

    There are three objectives for this project: 1) support OBP in meeting MYPP stated performance goals for the Sustainability Platform, 2) develop integrated feedstock production system designs that increase total productivity of the land, decrease delivered feedstock cost to the conversion facilities, and increase environmental performance of the production system, and 3) deliver to the bioenergy community robust datasets and flexible analysis tools for establishing sustainable and viable use of agricultural residues and dedicated energy crops. The key project outcome to date has been the development and deployment of a sustainable agricultural residue removal decision support framework. The modeling framework has been used to produce a revised national assessment of sustainable residue removal potential. The national assessment datasets are being used to update national resource assessment supply curves using POLYSIS. The residue removal modeling framework has also been enhanced to support high fidelity sub-field scale sustainable removal analyses. The framework has been deployed through a web application and a mobile application. The mobile application is being used extensively in the field with industry, research, and USDA NRCS partners to support and validate sustainable residue removal decisions. The results detailed in this report have set targets for increasing soil sustainability by focusing on primary soil quality indicators (total organic carbon and erosion) in two agricultural residue management pathways and a dedicated energy crop pathway. The two residue pathway targets were set to, 1) increase residue removal by 50% while maintaining soil quality, and 2) increase soil quality by 5% as measured by Soil Management Assessment Framework indicators. The energy crop pathway was set to increase soil quality by 10% using these same indicators. To demonstrate the feasibility and impact of each of these targets, seven case studies spanning the US are presented

  3. Hedging Effectiveness Around U.S. Department of Agriculture Crop Reports

    OpenAIRE

    McKenzie, Andrew M.; Singh, Navinderpal

    2011-01-01

    It is well documented that ‘‘unanticipated’’ information contained in United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) crop reports induces large price reactions in corn and soybean markets. Thus, a natural question that arises from this literature is: To what extent are futures hedges able to remove or reduce increased price risk around report release dates? This paper addresses this question by simulating daily futures returns, daily cash returns, and daily hedged returns around repor...

  4. Procedure for the cultivation of agricultural crops on grounds, polluted by radionuclides

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The title invention concerns an agricultural method to reduce the uptake of long-living isotopes in plants. In the title method first the pollution density of the soil is determined. Next, the seed and the soil are treated by adding 200-400 grams of a bacterium preparation (rhizotorphine, flavobacterium, rhizoagrine, and rhizobine) per hectare required seed of the to be grown crop and by adding 20-40 kg minerals and fertilizers per hectare soil for a pollution of 1-25 Ci/km2 (related to 137Cs). 5 tabs

  5. Liming in Agricultural Production Models with and Without the Adoption of Crop-Livestock Integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Carlos Mainardes da Silva

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Perennial forage crops used in crop-livestock integration (CLI are able to accumulate large amounts of straw on the soil surface in no-tillage system (NTS. In addition, they can potentially produce large amounts of soluble organic compounds that help improving the efficiency of liming in the subsurface, which favors root growth, thus reducing the risks of loss in yield during dry spells and the harmful effects of “overliming”. The aim of this study was to test the effects of liming on two models of agricultural production, with and without crop-livestock integration, for 2 years. Thus, an experiment was conducted in a Latossolo Vermelho (Oxisol with a very clayey texture located in an agricultural area under the NTS in Bandeirantes, PR, Brazil. Liming was performed to increase base saturation (V to 65, 75, and 90 % while one plot per block was maintained without the application of lime (control. A randomized block experimental design was adopted arranged in split-plots and four plots/block, with four replications. The soil properties evaluated were: pH in CaCl2, soil organic matter (SOM, Ca, Mg, K, Al, and P. The effects of liming were observed to a greater depth and for a long period through mobilization of ions in the soil, leading to a reduction in SOM and Al concentration and an increase in pH and the levels of Ca and Mg. In the first crop year, adoption of CLI led to an increase in the levels of K and Mg and a reduction in the levels of SOM; however, in the second crop year, the rate of decline of SOM decreased compared to the decline observed in the first crop year, and the level of K increased, whereas that of P decreased. The extent of the effects of liming in terms of depth and improvement in the root environment from the treatments were observed only partially from the changes observed in the chemical properties studied.

  6. The genetic manipulation of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae with the aim of converting polysaccharide-rich agricultural crops and industrial waste to single-cell protein and fuel ethanol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. S. Pretorius

    1994-07-01

    Full Text Available The world’s problem with overpopulation and environmental pollution has created an urgent demand for alternative protein and energy sources. One way of addressing these burning issues is to produce single-cell protein (for food and animal feed supplements and fuel ethanol from polysaccharide-rich agricultural crops and industrial waste by using baker’s yeast.

  7. The genetic manipulation of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae with the aim of converting polysaccharide-rich agricultural crops and industrial waste to single-cell protein and fuel ethanol

    OpenAIRE

    Pretorius, I S

    1994-01-01

    The world’s problem with overpopulation and environmental pollution has created an urgent demand for alternative protein and energy sources. One way of addressing these burning issues is to produce single-cell protein (for food and animal feed supplements) and fuel ethanol from polysaccharide-rich agricultural crops and industrial waste by using baker’s yeast.

  8. Partial Rootzone Drying: Changing Alternation Frequency at Different Phenological Stages and Impact on Tomato Crop

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Affi

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The goal of the current work was to assess the effect of different alternation frequency applied at different phenological stages on physiological parameters of a Partial rootzone drying (PRD irrigated tomato crop. Three treatments were applied. Besides the control irrigated at 100% of its water requirements, T3 and T4 are both treatments that received 50% of water requirements and that were irrigated by PRD strategy. Crop cycle was divided into three stages: S1 lasted from transplanting to 6th truss flowering, S2: the period separating the 6 th truss flowering and the 2 nd truss harvest, S3: lasted for the remaining crop cycle period beginning at 2nd truss harvest. While T4 was alternated every 10 days similarly, T3 was alternated every 14 days, 12 days and 10 days during S1, S2 and S3, respectively. T3 maximum daily shrinkage (MDS was 70% higher than T4 showing that the later is more efficient than the former. As far as stomatal conductance (Cs and leaf water potential (Ψl, results show that both PRD treatments were affected by stress without noticing any statistical differences in terms of those parameters. The control presented the highest Cs and Ψl levels during the whole crop cycle and the lowest water use efficiency (WUE.

  9. The potential of agricultural practices to increase C storage in cropped soils: an assessment for France

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chenu, Claire; Angers, Denis; Métay, Aurélie; Colnenne, Caroline; Klumpp, Katja; Bamière, Laure; Pardon, Lenaic; Pellerin, Sylvain

    2014-05-01

    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 (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 associated with vineyards. Hedges (i.e 60 m ha-1) stored 0.15 (0.05-0.26) Mg C ha-1 y-1. Very few estimates

  10. An Alternative Use of Horticultural Crops: Stressed Plants as Biofactories of Bioactive Phenolic Compounds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Cisneros-Zevallos

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Plants subjected to abiotic stresses synthesize secondary metabolites with potential application in the functional foods, dietary supplements, pharmaceutical, cosmetics and agrochemical markets. This approach can be extended to horticultural crops. This review describes previous reports regarding the effect of different postharvest abiotic stresses on the accumulation of phenolic compounds. Likewise, the physiological basis for the biosynthesis of phenolic compounds as an abiotic stress response is described. The information presented herein would be useful for growers and the fresh produce market which are interested in finding alternative uses for their crops, especially for those not meeting quality standards and thus are considered as waste.

  11. The Impact of Biotechnology, in Particular Genetically Modified Crops on International Agricultural Research, Production and Marketing and How this will Affect Agriculture in Western Australia

    OpenAIRE

    Forbes, Sandy

    2003-01-01

    In 2000 I was awarded a Nuffield Farming Scholarship to study the impact of biotechnology, in particular genetically modified crops, on international agricultural research, production and marketing. I studied this topic in 2001 in Canada, USA and United Kingdom in an attempt to gain an insight into the issues with GM crops and how this may impact on our decision to grow them in Western Australia. I was impressed by the technology available that opened up a range of opportunities for vast impr...

  12. Genetic consequences of radioactive contamination by the Chernobyl fallout to agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The genetic consequences of radioactive contamination by the fallout to agricultural crops after the accident at the Chernobyl NPP in 1986 have been studied. In the first, acute, period of this accident, when the absorbed dose was primarily due to external β- and γ-irradiation, the radiation injury of agricultural crops, according to the basic cytogenetic tests resembled the effect produced by acute γ-irradiation at comparable doses. The yield of cytogenetic damage in leaf meristem of plants grown in the 10-km zone of the ChNPP in 1987-1989 (the period of chronic, lower level radiation exposure) was shown to be enhanced and dependent on the level of radioactive contamination. The rate of decline with time in cytogenetic damage induced by chronic exposure lagged considerably behind that of the radiation exposure. Analysis of genetic variability in three sequentia generations of rye and wheat revealed increased cytogenetic damage in plants exposed to chronic irradiation during the 2nd and 3rd years

  13. The effect of gamma irradiation on the germination and growth of certain Nigerian agricultural crops

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mokobia, C E; Anomohanran, O [Department of Physics, Delta State University, Abraka, Delta State (Nigeria)

    2005-06-01

    Gamma irradiation has been found to be very useful both for sterilisation in medicine and the preservation of food and cereals in nutrition and agriculture. This investigation was carried out to determine the effect of gamma irradiation on the subsequent germination and growth of irradiated seeds. Thirty seeds each of maize, okra and groundnut were irradiated to varying doses of 150, 300, 500, 700, 900, 1000 Gy using the {sup 60}Co gamma cell irradiator facility at the Centre for Energy Research and Development, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. These, as well as the controls (unirradiated seeds), were planted on the same day in an already prepared area of farmland during the rainy season to ensure a constant moisture flow. The times of germination and subsequent growth were monitored. Results show that maize, okra and groundnut seeds needed for planting can be safely stored using gamma irradiation. However, the study reveals that the number of germinated seeds and the growth rate for the crops decrease with increase in the radiation dose the seeds were exposed to. Third-degree polynomial equations were derived which describe the percentage germination of the crops at various levels of exposure. A chart of percentage germination of seeds versus exposure dose is also presented as a quick guide to farmers, policy makers and agricultural institutions. (note)

  14. The effect of gamma irradiation on the germination and growth of certain Nigerian agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gamma irradiation has been found to be very useful both for sterilisation in medicine and the preservation of food and cereals in nutrition and agriculture. This investigation was carried out to determine the effect of gamma irradiation on the subsequent germination and growth of irradiated seeds. Thirty seeds each of maize, okra and groundnut were irradiated to varying doses of 150, 300, 500, 700, 900, 1000 Gy using the 60Co gamma cell irradiator facility at the Centre for Energy Research and Development, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. These, as well as the controls (unirradiated seeds), were planted on the same day in an already prepared area of farmland during the rainy season to ensure a constant moisture flow. The times of germination and subsequent growth were monitored. Results show that maize, okra and groundnut seeds needed for planting can be safely stored using gamma irradiation. However, the study reveals that the number of germinated seeds and the growth rate for the crops decrease with increase in the radiation dose the seeds were exposed to. Third-degree polynomial equations were derived which describe the percentage germination of the crops at various levels of exposure. A chart of percentage germination of seeds versus exposure dose is also presented as a quick guide to farmers, policy makers and agricultural institutions. (note)

  15. Energy technology impacts on agriculture with a bibliography of models for impact assessment on crop ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Possible impacts of energy technologies on agriculture are evaluated, and some of the available simulation models that can be used for predictive purposes are identified. An overview of energy technologies and impacts on the environment is presented to provide a framework for the commentary on the models. Coal combustion is shown to have major impacts on the environment and these will continue into the next century according to current Department of Energy projections. Air pollution effects will thus remain as the major impacts on crop ecosystems. Two hundred reports were evaluated, representing a wide range of models increasing in complexity from mathematical functions (fitted to data) through parametric models (which represent phenomena without describing the mechanisms) to mechanistic models (based on physical, chemical, and physiological principles). Many models were viewed as suitable for adaptation to technology assessment through the incorporation of representative dose-response relationships. It is clear that in many cases available models cannot be taken and directly applied in technology assessment. Very few models of air pollutant-crop interactions were identified, even though there is a considerable data base of pollutant effects on crops

  16. Energy technology impacts on agriculture with a bibliography of models for impact assessment on crop ecosystems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rupp, E.M.; Luxmoore, R.J.; Parzyck, D.C.

    1979-09-01

    Possible impacts of energy technologies on agriculture are evaluated, and some of the available simulation models that can be used for predictive purposes are identified. An overview of energy technologies and impacts on the environment is presented to provide a framework for the commentary on the models. Coal combustion is shown to have major impacts on the environment and these will continue into the next century according to current Department of Energy projections. Air pollution effects will thus remain as the major impacts on crop ecosystems. Two hundred reports were evaluated, representing a wide range of models increasing in complexity from mathematical functions (fitted to data) through parametric models (which represent phenomena without describing the mechanisms) to mechanistic models (based on physical, chemical, and physiological principles). Many models were viewed as suitable for adaptation to technology assessment through the incorporation of representative dose-response relationships. It is clear that in many cases available models cannot be taken and directly applied in technology assessment. Very few models of air pollutant-crop interactions were identified, even though there is a considerable data base of pollutant effects on crops.

  17. Agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The report entitled Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation : A Canadian Perspective, presents a summary of research regarding the impacts of climate change on key sectors over the past five years as it relates to Canada. This chapter on agriculture describes how climate change will affect primary agriculture production in Canada with particular focus on potential adaptation options, and vulnerability of agriculture at the farm level. Agriculture is a vital part of the Canadian economy, although only 7 per cent of Canada's land mass is used for agricultural purposes due to the limitations of climate and soils. Most parts of Canada are expected to experience warmer conditions, longer frost-free seasons and increased evapotranspiration. The impacts of these changes on agriculture will vary depending on precipitation changes, soil conditions, and land use. Northern regions may benefit from longer farming seasons, but poor soil conditions will limit the northward expansion of agricultural crops. Some of the negative impacts associated with climate change on agriculture include increased droughts, changes in pest and pathogen outbreaks, and moisture stress. In general, it is expected that the positive and negative impacts of climate change would offset each other. 74 refs., 2 tabs., 1 fig

  18. Bioenergy Crop Production in the United States. Potential Quantities, Land Use Changes, and Economic Impacts on the Agricultural Sector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Energy jointly analyzed the economic potential for, and impacts of, large-scale bioenergy crop production in the United States. An agricultural sector model (POLYSYS) was modified to include three potential bioenergy crops (switchgrass, hybrid poplar, and willow). At farmgate prices of US $2.44/GJ, an estimated 17 million hectares of bioenergy crops, annually yielding 171 million dry Mg of biomass, could potentially be produced at a profit greater than existing agricultural uses for the land. The estimate assumes high productivity management practices are permitted on Conservation Reserve Program lands. Traditional crops prices are estimated to increase 9 to 14 percent above baseline prices and farm income increases annually by US $6.0 billion above baseline. At farmgate prices of US $1.83/GJ, an estimated 7.9 million hectares of bioenergy crops, annually yielding 55 million dry Mg of biomass, could potentially be produced at a profit greater than existing agricultural uses for the land. The estimate assumes management practices intended to achieve high environmental benefits on Conservation Reserve Program lands. Traditional crops prices are estimated to increase 4 to 9 percent above baseline prices and farm income increases annually by US $2.8 billion above baseline

  19. Attenuation of urban agricultural production potential and crop water footprint due to shading from buildings and trees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Mark S.; Lathuillière, Michael J.; Tooke, Thoreau R.; Coops, Nicholas C.

    2015-06-01

    Urban agriculture requires local water to replace ‘hydrologic externalities’ associated with food produced outside of the local area, with an accompanying shift of the water footprint (WF) for agricultural production from rural to urban areas. Water requirements of urban agriculture have been difficult to estimate due to the heterogeneity of shading from trees and buildings within urban areas. We developed CityCrop, a plant growth and evapotranspiration (ET) model that couples a 3D model of tree canopies and buildings derived from LiDAR with a ray-casting approach to estimate spatially-explicit solar inputs in combination with local climate data. Evaluating CityCrop over a 1 km2 mixed use, residential neighborhood of Vancouver Canada, we estimated median light attenuation to result in 12% reductions in both reference ET (ETo) and crop ET (ETc). However, median crop yields were reduced by only 3.5% relative to potential yield modeled without any light attenuation, while the median crop WF was 9% less than the WF for areas unimpeded by shading. Over the 75 day cropping cycle, median crop water requirements as ETc were 17% less than that required for a well-watered grass (as ETo). If all lawns in our modeled area were replaced with crops, we estimate that about 37% of the resident population could obtain the vegetable portion of their diet from within the local area over a 150 day growing season. However doing so would result in augmented water demand if watering restrictions apply to lawns only. The CityCrop model can therefore be useful to evaluate trade-offs related to urban agriculture and to inform municipal water policy development.

  20. Plant oils as feedstock alternatives to petroleum - A short survey of potential oil crop platforms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlsson, Anders S

    2009-06-01

    Our society is highly depending on petroleum for its activities. About 90% is used as an energy source for transportation and for generation of heat and electricity and the remaining as feedstocks in the chemical industry. However, petroleum is a finite source as well as causing several environmental problems such as rising carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere. Petroleum therefore needs to be replaced by alternative and sustainable sources. Plant oils and oleochemicals derived from them represent such alternative sources, which can deliver a substantial part of what is needed to replace the petroleum used as feedstocks. Plant derived feedstock oils can be provided by two types of oil qualities, multi-purpose and technical oils. Multi-purpose oils represent oil qualities that contain common fatty acids and that can be used for both food and feedstock applications. Technical oil qualities contain unusual fatty acids with special properties gained from their unique molecular structure and these types of oils should only be used for feedstock applications. As a risk mitigation strategy in the selection of crops, technical oil qualities should therefore preferably be produced by oil crop platforms dedicated for industrial usage. This review presents a short survey of oil crop platforms to be considered for either multi-purpose or technical oils production. Included among the former platforms are some of the major oil crops in cultivation such as oil palm, soybean and rapeseed. Among the later are those that could be developed into dedicated industrial platforms such as crambe, flax, cotton and Brassica carinata. The survey finishes off by highlighting the potential of substantial increase in plant oil production by developing metabolic flux platforms, which are starch crops converted into oil crops. PMID:19375482

  1. Salt tolerant green crop species for sodium management in space agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamashita, Masamichi; Hashimoto, Hirofumi; Tomita-Yokotani, Kaori; Shimoda, Toshifumi; Nose, Akihiro; Space Agriculture Task Force, J.

    Ecological system and materials recycling loop of space agriculture are quite tight compared to natural ecological system on Earth. Sodium management will be a keen issue for space agricul-ture. Human nutritional requirements include sodium salt. Since sodium at high concentration is toxic for most of plant growth, excreted sodium of human waste should be removed from compost fertilizer. Use of marine algae is promising for harvesting potassium and other min-erals required for plant growth and returning remained sodium to satisfy human need of its intake. Farming salt tolerant green crop species is another approach to manage sodium problem in both space and terrestrial agriculture. We chose ice plant and New Zealand spinach. These two plant species are widely accepted green vegetable with many recipe. Ice plant can grow at the salinity level of sea water, and contain sodium salt up to 30% of its dry mass. Sodium distributes mainly in its bladder cells. New Zealand spinach is a plant species found in the front zone of sea shore, and tolerant against high salinity as well. Plant body size of both species at harvest is quite large, and easy to farm. Capability of bio-remediation of high saline soil is examined with ice plant and New Zealand spinach. Incubation medium was chosen to contain high concentration of sodium and potassium at the Na/K ratio of human excreta. In case Na/K ratio of plant body grown by this medium is greatly higher than that of incubation medium or soil, these halophytes are effective to remediate soil for farming less tolerant plant crop. Experimental results was less positive in this context.

  2. Alternative agricultural price distortions for CGE analysis, 2007 and 2011

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Hans Grinsted; Anderson, Kym

    A recent World Bank research project has generated an annual time series of distortions to agricultural incentives over the past half century for 82 countries, the majority of which are low-and middle-income countries. In this memorandum, the current GTAP version 8 Data Base may be modified to in...

  3. Alternative energy from agriculture: biological conversion and recycling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Massantini, F.; Caporali, F.; Masoni, A.

    1980-01-01

    A review on producing methanol and ethanol from agricultural products (sugar beet, sweet sorghum sugar cane, etc.) and biogas from aquatic plants (Eichhornia crassipes) and algae (Azolla, Chlorella) is given. Anaerobic fermentation of liquid manure and sewage, straw, distillery residues, and other organic wastes is also covered. (Refs. 42).

  4. Impact of treated urban wastewater for reuse in agriculture on crop response and soil ecotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belhaj, Dalel; Jerbi, Bouthaina; Medhioub, Mounir; Zhou, John; Kallel, Monem; Ayadi, Habib

    2016-08-01

    The scarcity of freshwater resources is a serious problem in arid regions, such as Tunisia, and marginal quality water is gradually being used in agriculture. This study aims to study the impact of treated urban wastewater for reuse in agriculture on the health of soil and food crops. The key findings are that the effluents of Sfax wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) did not meet the relevant guidelines, therefore emitting a range of organic (e.g., up to 90 mg L(-1) COD and 30 mg L(-1) BOD5) and inorganic pollutants (e.g., up to 0.5 mg L(-1) Cu and 0.1 mg L(-1) Cd) in the receiving aquatic environments. Greenhouse experiments examining the effects of wastewater reuse on food plants such as tomato, lettuce, and radish showed that the treated effluent adversely affected plant growth, photosynthesis, and antioxidant enzyme contents. However, the pollution burden and biological effects on plants were substantially reduced by using a 50 % dilution of treated sewage effluent, suggesting the potential of reusing treated effluent in agriculture so long as appropriate monitoring and control is in place. PMID:26520100

  5. A Model of Diffusion of Genetically Modified Crop Technology in Concentrated Agricultural Processing Markets - The Case of Soybeans

    OpenAIRE

    Nadolnyak, Denis A.; Sheldon, Ian M.

    2002-01-01

    In the paper, a dynamic model of diffusion of genetically modified crop technology is developed and simulated using the U.S. soybean market data. The model accounts for factors specific to agricultural markets, such as oligopsony power and strategic interaction among crop processors, growers' characteristics such as adoption behavior, and identity preservation requirements. Simulation results show how these factors affect the magnitude and distribution of the potential gains from genetically ...

  6. Anaerobic co-digestion of cattle manure and alternative crops for the substitution of maize in South Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalamaras, S D; Kotsopoulos, T A

    2014-11-01

    In this study alternative agricultural substrates are investigated as potential substitutes of maize for biogas production in the region of South Europe. Crop silages of cardoon, maize, milk thistle and sorghum as well as bedding straw from cattle farm were examined in the anaerobic co-digestion procedure with cattle manure. Milk thistle crop was further investigated in a naturally sun dried form and the effect of mechanical, thermal and thermo-chemical pretreatments on fiber composition and methane yield was evaluated. Pretreatment with NaOH increase the solubilization by 77.7%. The co-digestion experiment was carried out in 28 batch reactors at 37°C. The highest methane yields of 308, 271 and 267LCH4kg(-1) of volatile solids were obtained by co-digestion of cattle manure with cardoon silage, thermo-chemical pretreated milk thistle stalks with NaOH and maize silage, respectively. Furthermore, co-digestion of bedding straw and cattle manure had similar methane yield with maize silage. PMID:25237775

  7. The value of seasonal forecasting and crop mix adaptation to climate variability for agriculture under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, H. S.; Schneider, U.; Schmid, E.; Held, H.

    2012-04-01

    Changes to climate variability and frequency of extreme weather events are expected to impose damages to the agricultural sector. Seasonal forecasting and long range prediction skills have received attention as an option to adapt to climate change because seasonal climate and yield predictions could improve farmers' management decisions. The value of seasonal forecasting skill is assessed with a crop mix adaptation option in Spain where drought conditions are prevalent. Yield impacts of climate are simulated for six crops (wheat, barely, cotton, potato, corn and rice) with the EPIC (Environmental Policy Integrated Climate) model. Daily weather data over the period 1961 to 1990 are used and are generated by the regional climate model REMO as reference period for climate projection. Climate information and its consequent yield variability information are given to the stochastic agricultural sector model to calculate the value of climate information in the agricultural market. Expected consumers' market surplus and producers' revenue is compared with and without employing climate forecast information. We find that seasonal forecasting benefits not only consumers but also producers if the latter adopt a strategic crop mix. This mix differs from historical crop mixes by having higher shares of crops which fare relatively well under climate change. The corresponding value of information is highly sensitive to farmers' crop mix choices.

  8. Alternatives to Antibiotics in Animal Agriculture: An Ecoimmunological View

    OpenAIRE

    Yongming Sang; Frank Blecha

    2014-01-01

    Ecological immunology (or ecoimmunology) is a new discipline in animal health and immunology that extends immunologists’ views into a natural context where animals and humans have co-evolved. Antibiotic resistance and tolerance (ART) in bacteria are manifested in antibiosis-surviving subsets of resisters and persisters. ART has emerged though natural evolutionary consequences enriched by human nosocomial and agricultural practices, in particular, wide use of antibiotics that overwhelms other ...

  9. Agricultural production - Phase 2. Indonesia. Sources and sinks of nitrogen-E phosphorus-based nutrients in cropping systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This document is the report of an expert mission to assist in the initiation of research on sustainable agriculture in rice-based cropping systems as related to the flow of plant nutrients, and on the use of legumes in upland cropping systems. Experimental suggestions include an investigation of the acid tolerance of different soybean strains under upland conditions, an analysis of ways to replace fertilizer nitrogen for rice crops by a green manure such as azolla, and a study of the increase in nutrient availability due to th presence of fish in a paddy field

  10. Comparative energy analysis of agricultural crops used for producing ethanol and CO2 emissions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A variety of biomass sources can be used for producing ethanol. Among these are sugar cane (Brazil), corn (USA), sweet sorghum (USA and Europe), sugar beets (Europe) and wheat (USA and Europe). The production of fuel alcohol worldwide has been analyzed from various perspectives: productivity, the competition between food and energy crops, the social and economic aspects and, more recently, the environmental dimension. Another relevant study is aimed at calculating the energy costs of the production and use of alcohol from sugar cane as compared to other primary sources for this fuel. The present analysis employs the methodology of energy balance, highlighting local conditions that influence how biomass is transformed into ethanol: technology, agricultural productivity, environmental conditions and an estimate of the carbon dioxide emissions from these different processes. (author)

  11. Development of CROPTRIT Model: The Dynamics of Tritium in Agricultural Crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tritium has a complex behaviour once released into the environment. Tritium can be effectively incorporated into biological systems, including the human body, as organically bound tritium (OBT) with a larger residence time than tritiated water (HTO). In the last years robust models were developed for tritium dynamics in mammals (human included), birds and fish but all of them depend on the knowledge of intake for both terrestrial or aquatic food chain. The uncertainty of the present models for tritium in crops following an accidental atmospheric release, is very high and has impacts on the engineering actions for handling and decreasing the nuclear risk. The gaps in knowledge or the local variability of key parameters were recognised as source of uncertainty. Based on an interdisciplinary approach, CROPTRIT model was gradually developed in the last decade focusing on the detecting of the uncertainty sources. Crops of interest depends on each specific case but wheat and rice cover the majority of the practical needs for radiological risk modelling (the major food in Europe and Asia). An analysis of the processes involved in the Soil-Vegetation-Atmosphere Transfer (SVAT) of tritium was done in connection with the available experimental results. The agricultural research is focused on the improving of the yield and the crop growth models were developed in relation with the genotype, weather and management of fertilisation and water. For the radiological purposes, the interest lies in the pollutant concentration at harvest and the CROPTRIT model is focused on the influence of various processes contributing to variability and uncertainty of tritium (OBT and HTO) at harvest. The current results evidentiate the role of the stomatal conductance and difficulties at the day/night transitions, as well as the complex behaviour of the maintenance respiration. A review of the experimental results demonstrates the importance of OBT formation in night conditions and difficulties

  12. Agricultural crop harvest progress monitoring by fully polarimetric synthetic aperture radar imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Hao; Zhao, Chunjiang; Yang, Guijun; Li, Zengyuan; Chen, Erxue; Yuan, Lin; Yang, Xiaodong; Xu, Xingang

    2015-01-01

    Dynamic mapping and monitoring of crop harvest on a large spatial scale will provide critical information for the formulation of optimal harvesting strategies. This study evaluates the feasibility of C-band polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (PolSAR) for monitoring the harvesting progress of oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) fields. Five multitemporal, quad-pol Radarsat-2 images and one optical ZY-1 02C image were acquired over a farmland area in China during the 2013 growing season. Typical polarimetric signatures were obtained relying on polarimetric decomposition methods. Temporal evolutions of these signatures of harvested fields were compared with the ones of unharvested fields in the context of the entire growing cycle. Significant sensitivity was observed between the specific polarimetric parameters and the harvest status of oilseed rape fields. Based on this sensitivity, a new method that integrates two polarimetric features was devised to detect the harvest status of oilseed rape fields using a single image. The validation results are encouraging even for the harvested fields covered with high residues. This research demonstrates the capability of PolSAR remote sensing in crop harvest monitoring, which is a step toward more complex applications of PolSAR data in precision agriculture.

  13. Use of radioisotopes in agriculture: DNA based molecular markers in crop improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Agriculture has always benefited from the use of radioisotopes in many ways. In the beginning radioisotopes were mostly used for physiological studies to measure photosynthetic efficiency, nutrient uptake, and for mutation breeding. Radioisotopes have now become a part of the biotechnological tools that are being increasingly used in improving crops and production systems. The tools of biotechnology are being increasingly used to hasten breeding and address problems of biotic and abiotic stresses. Some of the non-radioactive methods have replaced radiotracer techniques and thus led to automation often at high cost. However, still there remain many applications where radioisotopes seem almost indispensable. For some of the applications like comparative genome mapping, the confirmation of transgenics, and establishment of gene copy number, use of RFLP with radioisotopes is essential. The following research areas at ICRISAT use radioisotopes: (1) physiological basis of adaptation to abiotic stresses (ii) development and use of appropriate DNA markers crop improvement; (iii) characterization of cytoplasmic male sterile systems and genetic diversity of breeding materials, land races and the wild relatives and (iv) molecular basis of disease resistance; (v) comparative genome mapping across cereals, (vi) isolation and characterization of genes of potential value to genetic improvement and (vii) verification of genetic transformation events. (author)

  14. Cropping Pattern and Comparative Advantage of Agricultural Products in Ilam Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roya Eshraghi Samani

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available I n this study, the comparative advantage of main agricultural products and its relation to cropping pattern was studied in Ilam Province. For data analyzing the comparative advantage and government policies effects indices, Policy Analysis Matrix (PAM were used. The obtained results for the comparative advantage indices of Domestic Resource Cost (DRC, Social Cost Benefit (SCB and Net Social Profitability (NSP show that production of irrigated wheat, dry-farming wheat and dry-farming barely has not comparative advantage in Ilam Province but the production of irrigated barely, corn, dry-farming pea, dry-farming lentil, watermelon, cucumber and tomato have comparative advantage in Ilam Province. In addition, the obtained results for NPIC index show the Nominal Government Protection of inputs in all products. Also, Nominal Protection Coefficient index indicated that nominal market protection of products like wheat (irrigated and dry-farming and barely (irrigated and dry-farming was positive and those of other products were negative and the Effective Protection Coefficient for wheat and barley had the highest values. The results showed that the existing cropping pattern was not allotted with comparative advantage but is related to the effective protection coefficient.

  15. Role of native shrubs of the Sahel in mitigating water and nutrient stresses of agricultural crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bayala, R.; Ghezzehei, T. A.; Bogie, N. A.; Diedhiou, I.; Dick, R.

    2015-12-01

    In the semi arid zone of the Sahel native woody shrubs are present in many farmers' fields. The native density of these shrubs is fairly low at around 200 to 300 individuals per hectare. An ongoing study in the Peanut Basin, Senegal has shown a vast improvement in crop yields when annual food crops are planted with the shrub Guiera senegalensis, especially in years of low or irregular precipitation. Shrubs in field plots established in 2003 where a rotation of peanuts and millet are grown are planted at a much higher density of 1500-1830 individuals per hectare. In order to increase the density of shrubs on the landscape, the shrubs must be cultivated. We monitored soil moisture, soil temperature, and growth of recently transplanted individuals at a field station in Thies, Senegal.This study seeks to determine the growth characteristics and water use of young shrubs in order to inform possible future plantations of the shrubs in a more intensely managed agroecosystem. If this technique of intercropping is to be expanded we must not exceed the carrying capacity of the landscape. In vulnerable ecosystems where natural resources are scarce and farming inputs are low, we must work to determine ways of exploiting the adaptation of local agroecosystems to increase the sustainability of agriculture in the region.

  16. Impacts on irrigated agriculture of changes in electricity costs resulting from Western Area Power Administration's power marketing alternatives

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Irrigation is a major factor in the growth of US agricultural productivity, especially in western states, which account for more than 85% of the nation's irrigated acreage. In some of these states, almost all cropland is irrigated, and nearly 50% of the irrigation is done with electrically powered pumps. Therefore, even small increases in the cost of electricity could have a disproportionate impact on irrigated agriculture. This technical memorandum examines the impacts that could result from proposed changes in the power marketing programs of the Western Area Power Administration's Salt Lake City Area Office. The changes could increase the cost of power to all Western customers, including rural municipalities and irrigation districts that rely on inexpensive federal power to pump water. The impacts are assessed by translating changes in Western's wholesale power rate into changes in the cost of pumping water as an input for agricultural production. Farmers can adapt to higher electricity prices in many ways, such as (1) using different pumping fuels, (2) adding workers and increasing management to irrigate more efficiently, and (3) growing more drought-tolerant crops. This study projects several responses, including using less groundwater and planting fewer waterintensive crops. The study finds that when dependence on Western's power is high, the cost of power can have a major effect on energy use, agricultural practices, and the distribution of planted acreage. The biggest percentage changes in farm income would occur (1) in Nevada and Utah (however, all projected changes are less than 2% of the baseline) and (2) under the marketing alternatives that represent the lowest capacity and energy offer considered in Western's Electric Power Marketing Environmental Impact Statement. The aggregate impact on farm incomes and the value of total farm production would be much smaller than that suggested by the changes in water use and planted acreage

  17. The costs of anti-herbivore defense traits in agricultural crop plants: a case study involving leafhoppers and trichomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaplan, Ian; Dively, Galen P; Denno, Robert F

    2009-06-01

    The expression of plant defenses is thought to entail costs (e.g., the allocation of resources away from growth or reproduction) that constrain the evolution of plant genotypes maximally defended against herbivores. Although central to the ecological theory underlying plant-insect interactions at large, the concept of defense costs is particularly evident in agricultural crops where plants may be under simultaneous selection for enhanced growth and/or reproduction (i.e., yield) and anti-herbivore resistance traits that deter pests. In this study we investigate the role of trichomes as a resistance mechanism against a sap-feeding insect (the leafhopper, Empoasca fabae) on potato. Natural variation in trichome density among 17 potato cultivars was used to test for the role of trichomes as a putative defense against leafhoppers, and evidence of costs in trichome expression. Two different types of costs were explored: (1) allocation costs (i.e., the relationship between trichomes and yield), and (2) costs involving trade-offs with alternative defense strategies (e.g., tolerance). Although leafhopper abundance did not decrease as trichome density increased, leafhopper injury to potato plants (foliar necrosis) was negatively correlated with trichome density. As a result, the per capita effect of leafhopper adults and nymphs on foliar damage was lower on plants with high trichome densities. We found no evidence, however, for costs of expressing this resistance trait; trichomes were not correlated with either potato yield or tolerance to herbivory. Thus, selection for multiple plant defenses to alleviate the impact of pests in agronomic crops may indeed be possible without inherent losses in plant yield. PMID:19544730

  18. Energy and economic implications of agricultural technologies: an approach based on the technical options for the operations of crop production.

    OpenAIRE

    Kumar, A; Reddy N

    1985-01-01

    ILO pub-WEP pub. Working paper on the energy and economic implications of the choice of technology for agricultural technology, based on an analysis of rice production - develops a mathematical model with which comparisons of crop yields, power consumption, labour demand, fixed capital costs, etc. Are made; compares traditional cultivation techniques, the use of high yielding seeds, the application of fertilizers, insecticides and herbicides, and three levels of agricultural mechanization. Bi...

  19. Socio-economic characterization of integrated cropping systems in urban and peri-urban agriculture of Faisalabad, Pakistan

    OpenAIRE

    Shoaib Ur Rehman; Martina Predotova; Iqar Ahmad Khan; Eva Schlecht; Andreas Buerkert

    2013-01-01

    Faisalabad city is surrounded by agricultural lands, where farmers are growing vegetables, grain crops, and fodder for auto-consumption and local marketing. To study the socioeconomic impact and resource use in these urban and peri-urban agricultural production (UPA) systems, a baseline survey was conducted during 2009–2010. A total of 140 households were selected using a stratified sampling method and interviewed with a structured questionnaire. The results revealed that 96 % of the househol...

  20. Soil erosion potential of organic versus conventional farming evaluated by USLE modelling of cropping statistics for agricultural districts in Bavaria

    OpenAIRE

    Auerswald, Karl; Kainz, Max; Fiener, Peter

    2003-01-01

    Organic agriculture (OA) aims to identify a production regime that causes less environmental problems than conventional agriculture (CA). We examined whether the two systems differ in their susceptibility to soil erosion by water. To account for the large heterogeneity within the rotations practised on different farms, we chose a statistical evaluation which modelled erosion using the USLE method from the cropping statistics for 2056 districts in Bavaria (70 547 km2; 29.8% arable). Physical c...

  1. Phosphorus export by runoff from agricultural field plots with different crop cover in Lake Taihu watershed

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    Runoff and soil losses from agricultural fields are investigated as major nonpoint sources of phosphorus (P) entering lakes of Eastern China. There is relatively little information on P transport from ricefield and cropland of Lake Taihu watershed in Eastern China. Soil and P in surface runoff from a series of plots in the watershed were evaluated under simulated rainfall conditions. The objectives of this study were to evaluate theeffects of crop cover, slope, and fertilizer application on P concentrations in surface runoff and eroded soil. Accumulated sediment yields varied from 7.1 to 300 g/m2 for croplands, depending on management practices. For all experiment plots, weighted average concentrations of total-P (TP), dissolved P (DP) and particulate P (PP) are much higher than 0.02 mg/L, the limiting concentration in lake water. This result showed the potential contamination of lake water from agricultural surface runoff. Accumulated TP losses were 3.8 and 18.8 mg/m2 for ricefield and cropland, respectively. The estimated annual loss of TP was 0.74 kg/(hm2鷄) for cropland. Most of P loss is in PP form, which accounts for more than 90% of TP loss for cropland.

  2. Multi-country evidence that crop diversification promotes ecological intensification of agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gurr, Geoff M; Lu, Zhongxian; Zheng, Xusong; Xu, Hongxing; Zhu, Pingyang; Chen, Guihua; Yao, Xiaoming; Cheng, Jiaan; Zhu, Zengrong; Catindig, Josie Lynn; Villareal, Sylvia; Van Chien, Ho; Cuong, Le Quoc; Channoo, Chairat; Chengwattana, Nalinee; Lan, La Pham; Hai, Le Huu; Chaiwong, Jintana; Nicol, Helen I; Perovic, David J; Wratten, Steve D; Heong, Kong Luen

    2016-01-01

    Global food security requires increased crop productivity to meet escalating demand(1-3). Current food production systems are heavily dependent on synthetic inputs that threaten the environment and human well-being(2,4,5). Biodiversity, for instance, is key to the provision of ecosystem services such as pest control(6,7), but is eroded in conventional agricultural systems. Yet the conservation and reinstatement of biodiversity is challenging(5,8,9), and it remains unclear whether the promotion of biodiversity can reduce reliance on inputs without penalizing yields on a regional scale. Here we present results from multi-site field studies replicated in Thailand, China and Vietnam over a period of four years, in which we grew nectar-producing plants around rice fields, and monitored levels of pest infestation, insecticide use and yields. Compiling the data from all sites, we report that this inexpensive intervention significantly reduced populations of two key pests, reduced insecticide applications by 70%, increased grain yields by 5% and delivered an economic advantage of 7.5%. Additional field studies showed that predators and parasitoids of the main rice pests, together with detritivores, were more abundant in the presence of nectar-producing plants. We conclude that a simple diversification approach, in this case the growth of nectar-producing plants, can contribute to the ecological intensification of agricultural systems. PMID:27249349

  3. Gully evolution in field crops on vertic soils under conventional agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo, Carlos; Pérez, Rafael; Mora, Jose; Gómez, Jose A.

    2015-04-01

    Gully erosion is a major process contributing to soil degradation on cultivated areas. Its effects are especially intense in farms under conventional agriculture characterised by the use of heavy machinery for land levelling and herbicides leading to the depletion of natural vegetation in valley locations. When the soil (e.g. vertic soils) and parent material conditions (e.g. soft erodible marls) are favourable to incision, gully features may present large dimensions, producing the loss of significant proportions of productive land. This study evaluates the evolution of several gully networks located in Córdoba (Spain) within the Campiña area (a rolling landscape on Miocene marls) with conventional agriculture and gully filling operations as the predominant farm practices. The area of the catchments ranged from 10 to 100 ha, they were covered by field crops (mostly bean, sunflower and wheat) on vertic soils. Firstly, we carried out a historical analysis of the gully development during the last six decades by aerial image interpretation. Secondly, a number of field surveys were conducted to characterise the evolution of the gully morphology in a period of five years (2010-2014). For this purpose, a range of measurement techniques were used: pole and tape, differential GPS and 3D photo-reconstruction. Finally, the influence of topography (slope and drainage area) on gully dimensions along the longitudinal profile was assessed.

  4. Changes of crop rotation in Iowa determined from the United States Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Statistics Service cropland data layer product

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Alan J.; Doraiswamy, Paul C.; Raymond Hunt, E.

    2012-01-01

    Crop rotation is one of the important decisions made independently by numerous farm managers, and is a critical variable in models of crop growth and soil carbon. In Iowa and much of the Midwestern United States (US), the typical management decision is to rotate corn and soybean crops for a single field; therefore, the land-cover changes each year even though the total area of agricultural land-use remains the same. The price for corn increased from 2001 to 2010, which increased corn production in Iowa. We tested the hypothesis that the production increase was the result of changes in crop rotation in Iowa using the annual remote sensing classification (the cropland data layer) produced by the United States Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Statistics Service. It was found that the area planted in corn increased from 4.7 million hectares in 2001 to 5.7 million hectares in 2007, which was correlated with the market price for corn. At the county level, there were differences in how the increase in corn production was accomplished. Northern and central counties had little land to expand cultivation and generally increased corn production by converting to a corn-corn rotation from the standard corn-soybean rotation. Southern counties in Iowa increased corn production by expanding into land that was not under recent cultivation. These changes affect the amount of soil carbon sequestration.

  5. Application of Vegetation Indices for Agricultural Crop Yield Prediction Using Neural Network Techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suranjan Panigrahi

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Spatial variability in a crop field creates a need for precision agriculture. Economical and rapid means of identifying spatial variability is obtained through the use of geotechnology (remotely sensed images of the crop field, image processing, GIS modeling approach, and GPS usage and data mining techniques for model development. Higher-end image processing techniques are followed to establish more precision. The goal of this paper was to investigate the strength of key spectral vegetation indices for agricultural crop yield prediction using neural network techniques. Four widely used spectral indices were investigated in a study of irrigated corn crop yields in the Oakes Irrigation Test Area research site of North Dakota, USA. These indices were: (a red and near-infrared (NIR based normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI, (b green and NIR based green vegetation index (GVI, (c red and NIR based soil adjusted vegetation index (SAVI, and (d red and NIR based perpendicular vegetation index (PVI. These four indices were investigated for corn yield during 3 years (1998, 1999, and 2001 and for the pooled data of these 3 years. Initially, Back-propagation Neural Network (BPNN models were developed, including 16 models (4 indices * 4 years including the data from the pooled years to test for the efficiency determination of those four vegetation indices in corn crop yield prediction. The corn yield was best predicted using BPNN models that used the means and standard deviations of PVI grid images. In all three years, it provided higher prediction accuracies, coefficient of determination (r2, and lower standard error of prediction than the models involving GVI, NDVI, and SAVI image information. The GVI, NDVI, and SAVI models for all three years provided average testing prediction accuracies of 24.26% to 94.85%, 19.36% to 95.04%, and 19.24% to 95.04%, respectively while the PVI models for all three years provided average testing prediction accuracies

  6. DETERMINATION OF BACKGROUND LEVELS OF LEAD AND CADMIUM IN RAW AGRICULTURAL CROPS BY USING DIFFERENTIAL PULSE ANODIC STRIPPING VOLTAMMETRY

    Science.gov (United States)

    A method is described for the simultaneous determination of ultratrace levels of lead and cadmium in selected agricultural crop samples by differential pulse anodic stripping voltametry. Samples are dry ashed at high temperature with H2SO4 as an ashing aid. Techniques are describ...

  7. Agricultural residues and energy crops as potentially economical and novel substrates for microbial production of butanol (a biofuel)

    Science.gov (United States)

    This review describes production of acetone butanol ethanol (ABE) from a variety of agricultural residues and energy crops employing biochemical or fermentation processes. A number of organisms are available for this bioconversion including Clostridium beijerinckii P260, C. beijerinckii BA101, C. a...

  8. Effects of co-cropping Bidens pilosa (L.) and Tagetes minuta (L.) on bioaccumulation of Pb in Lactuca sativa (L.) growing in polluted agricultural soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cid, Carolina Vergara; Rodriguez, Judith Hebelen; Salazar, María Julieta; Blanco, Andrés; Pignata, María Luisa

    2016-09-01

    Polluted agricultural soils are a serious problem for food safety, with phytoremediation being the most favorable alternative from the environmental perspective. However, this methodology is generally time-consuming and requires the cessation of agriculture. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to evaluate two potential phytoextractor plants (the native species Bidens pilosa and Tagetes minuta) co-cropped with lettuce growing on agricultural lead-polluted soils. The concentrations of Pb, as well as of other metals, were investigated in the phytoextractors, crop species, and in soils, with the potential risk to the health of consumers being estimated. The soil parameters pH, EC, organic matter percentage and bioavailable lead showed a direct relationship with the accumulation of Pb in roots. In addition, the concentration of Pb in roots of native species was closely related to Fe (B. pilosa, r = 0.81; T. minuta r = 0.75), Cu (T. minuta, r = 0.93), Mn (B. pilosa, r = 0.89) and Zn (B. pilosa, r = 0.91; T. minuta, r = 0.91). Our results indicate that the interaction between rhizospheres increased the phytoextraction of lead, which was accompanied by an increase in the biomass of the phytoextractor species. However, the consumption of lettuce still revealed a toxicological risk from Pb in all treatments. PMID:26940382

  9. In silico analysis of the 16S rRNA gene of endophytic bacteria, isolated from the aerial parts and seeds of important agricultural crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bredow, C; Azevedo, J L; Pamphile, J A; Mangolin, C A; Rhoden, S A

    2015-01-01

    Because of human population growth, increased food production and alternatives to conventional methods of biocontrol and development of plants such as the use of endophytic bacteria and fungi are required. One of the methods used to study microorganism diversity is sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, which has several advantages, including universality, size, and availability of databases for comparison. The objective of this study was to analyze endophytic bacterial diversity in agricultural crops using published papers, sequence databases, and phylogenetic analysis. Fourteen papers were selected in which the ribosomal 16S rRNA gene was used to identify endophytic bacteria, in important agricultural crops, such as coffee, sugar cane, beans, corn, soybean, tomatoes, and grapes, located in different geographical regions (America, Europe, and Asia). The corresponding 16S rRNA gene sequences were selected from the NCBI database, aligned using the Mega 5.2 program, and phylogenetic analysis was undertaken. The most common orders present in the analyzed cultures were Bacillales, Enterobacteriales, and Actinomycetales and the most frequently observed genera were Bacillus, Pseudomonas, and Microbacterium. Phylogenetic analysis showed that only approximately 1.56% of the total sequences were not properly grouped, demonstrating reliability in the identification of microorganisms. This study identified the main genera found in endophytic bacterial cultures from plants, providing data for future studies on improving plant agriculture, biotechnology, endophytic bacterium prospecting, and to help understand relationships between endophytic bacteria and their interactions with plants. PMID:26345903

  10. Even the smallest non-crop habitat islands could be beneficial: distribution of carabid beetles and spiders in agricultural landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michal Knapp

    Full Text Available Carabid beetles and ground-dwelling spiders inhabiting agroecosystems are beneficial organisms with a potential to control pest species. Intensification of agricultural management and reduction of areas covered by non-crop vegetation during recent decades in some areas has led to many potentially serious environmental problems including a decline in the diversity and abundance of beneficial arthropods in agricultural landscapes. This study investigated carabid beetle and spider assemblages in non-crop habitat islands of various sizes (50 to 18,000 square metres within one large field, as well as the arable land within the field, using pitfall traps in two consecutive sampling periods (spring to early summer and peak summer. The non-crop habitat islands situated inside arable land hosted many unique ground-dwelling arthropod species that were not present within the surrounding arable land. Even the smallest non-crop habitat islands with areas of tens of square metres were inhabited by assemblages substantially different from these inhabiting arable land and thus enhanced the biodiversity of agricultural landscapes. The non-crop habitat area substantially affected the activity density, recorded species richness and recorded species composition of carabid and ground-dwelling spider assemblages; however, the effects were weakened when species specialised to non-crop habitats species were analysed separately. Interestingly, recorded species richness of spiders increased with non-crop habitat area, whereas recorded species richness of carabid beetles exhibited an opposite trend. There was substantial temporal variation in the spatial distribution of ground-dwelling arthropods, and contrasting patterns were observed for particular taxa (carabid beetles and spiders. In general, local environmental conditions (i.e., non-crop habitat island tree cover, shrub cover, grass cover and litter depth were better determinants of arthropod assemblages than non-crop

  11. Even the smallest non-crop habitat islands could be beneficial: distribution of carabid beetles and spiders in agricultural landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knapp, Michal; Řezáč, Milan

    2015-01-01

    Carabid beetles and ground-dwelling spiders inhabiting agroecosystems are beneficial organisms with a potential to control pest species. Intensification of agricultural management and reduction of areas covered by non-crop vegetation during recent decades in some areas has led to many potentially serious environmental problems including a decline in the diversity and abundance of beneficial arthropods in agricultural landscapes. This study investigated carabid beetle and spider assemblages in non-crop habitat islands of various sizes (50 to 18,000 square metres) within one large field, as well as the arable land within the field, using pitfall traps in two consecutive sampling periods (spring to early summer and peak summer). The non-crop habitat islands situated inside arable land hosted many unique ground-dwelling arthropod species that were not present within the surrounding arable land. Even the smallest non-crop habitat islands with areas of tens of square metres were inhabited by assemblages substantially different from these inhabiting arable land and thus enhanced the biodiversity of agricultural landscapes. The non-crop habitat area substantially affected the activity density, recorded species richness and recorded species composition of carabid and ground-dwelling spider assemblages; however, the effects were weakened when species specialised to non-crop habitats species were analysed separately. Interestingly, recorded species richness of spiders increased with non-crop habitat area, whereas recorded species richness of carabid beetles exhibited an opposite trend. There was substantial temporal variation in the spatial distribution of ground-dwelling arthropods, and contrasting patterns were observed for particular taxa (carabid beetles and spiders). In general, local environmental conditions (i.e., non-crop habitat island tree cover, shrub cover, grass cover and litter depth) were better determinants of arthropod assemblages than non-crop habitat island

  12. Crop diversity effects on productivity and economic returns under dryland agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Increasing crop diversity has been identified as a method to improve agronomic performance of cropping systems and increase provision of ecosystem services. However, there is a need to understand the economic performance of more diverse cropping systems. Crop productivity and economic net returns we...

  13. Conservationist Systems, one environmental alternative for the agriculture of the Northeastern Andes of Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The article shows the results of a proposal of alternative handling of the agriculture ecosystem tobacco-bean-maize, main agricultural activity of the Northeastern Andes of Colombia. This system is the base of the economic and alimentary security and the main factor of degradation of the natural resources of the region. The work looks for to develop the diversified rotations, as essential component of biological diversity, the reduced works as strategy of protection of the soil and the promotion of the agriculture ecology like new model of agricultural development. The results of the work show that the high volume of organic residuals coming from the rotation tobacco bean maize, become compost in the field and the reduction of the farm, they promote the stability of the productive components of the soils and their agricultural yields. The biggest levels of organic matter and of total porosity, generated by the biggest biological activity, they indicate that the technological alternatives of the proposal slow the effects of the degradation originated by the conventional agriculture. These alternatives can be included in the regional programs of agricultural production, like solution principle and as strategy for the sustainable development of the region

  14. Impact of Agricultural Credit on Production of Wheat Crop: A Case Study of District Faisalabad-Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadia Asghar , Muhammad Waqas Chughtai

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Agriculture sector plays an important role in the economic development of Pakistan. Wheat is an important and most cultivated crop because it is an essential ingredient of food commodities. Credit plays a vital role in agricultural farming by indirectly participating in purchasing of agricultural inputs i.e. seed, fertilizer, irrigation, machinery and labor etc. Majority of the farmers are poor and they are not able to fulfill the cash requirement of farming, therefore credit has become their dire need. Due to credit farmers can timely purchase the agricultural inputs which resulting a bumper crop. The objective of this study is to depict the impact of credit on the production of wheat crop. Survey was conducted and random sampling technique was used to select the sample borrowers. The collected data was interpreted through “Cobb Douglas Production Function” by using statistical software (SPSS 16.0. The results showed that credit has positive and significant impact on wheat production. The values of R2 and F-statistics are found significant which represented that all selected variables are highly significant. The study not only shares the importance of credit to perform any agriculture activity but also helpful for economists and policy makers for designing agri financing policies.

  15. Use of geothermal heat for crop drying and related agricultural applications. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gordon, T.J.; Wright, T.C.; Fein, E.; Munson, T.R.; Richmond, R.C.

    1978-03-01

    Observations led to the selection of the alfalfa dehydration industry for in-depth analysis of the application of moderate-temperature geothermal heat. Six geothermal heat exchanger/dryer configurations were examined. A low-temperature conveyor dryer using geothermal water to supply all required heat was chosen for site-specific analysis, the retrofitting of a large alfalfa dehydration plant within the Heber KGRA in the Imperial Valley, California. Even in the most favorable scenario--sharing a geothermal pipeline with the neighboring fertilizer plant--geothermal retrofitting would increase the price of the alfalfa ''dehy'' about 40 percent. The geothermal brine is estimated to cost $2.58/million Btu's compared with a 1977 natural gas cost of $1.15. Capital cost for heat exchangers and the new dryers is estimated at $3.3 million. The Heber plant appeared to offer the only good opportunity for geothermal retrofitting of an existing alfalfa dehydration plant. Construction of new plants at geothermal resource sites cannot be justified due to the uncertain state of the ''dehy'' industry. Use of geothermal heat for drying other crops may be much more promising. The potato dehydration industry, which is concentrated in the geothermal-rich Snake River Valley of Idaho, appears to offer good potential for geothermal retrofitting; about 4.7 x 10{sup 12}Btu's are used annually by plants within 50 miles of resources. Drying together at the geothermal wellhead several crops that have interlocking processing seasons and drying-temperature requirements may be quite attractive. The best ''multicrop drying center'' site identified was at Power Ranch Wells, Arizona; 34 other sites were defined. Agricultural processing applications other than drying were investigated briefly.

  16. Assessment of alternative land management practices using hydrological simulation and a decision support tool: Arborea agricultural region, Sardinia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Cau

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Quantifying the impact of land use on water supply and quality is a primary focus of environmental management. In this work we apply a semidistributed hydrological model (SWAT to predict the impact of different land management practices on water and agricultural chemical yield over a long period of time for a study site situated in the Arborea region of central Sardinia, Italy. The physical processes associated with water movement, crop growth, and nutrient cycling are directly modeled by SWAT. The model simulations are used to identify indicators that reflect critical processes related to the integrity and sustainability of the ecosystem. Specifically we focus on stream quality and quantity indicators associated with anthropogenic and natural sources of pollution. A multicriteria decision support system is then used to develop the analysis matrix where water quality and quantity indicators for the rivers, lagoons, and soil are combined with socio-economic variables. The DSS is used to assess four options involving alternative watersheds designated for intensive agriculture and dairy farming and the use or not of treated wastewater for irrigation. Our analysis suggests that of the four options, the most widely acceptable consists in the transfer of intensive agricultural practices to the larger watershed, which is less vulnerable, in tandem with wastewater reuse, which rates highly due to water scarcity in this region of the Mediterranean. More generally, the work demonstrates how both qualitative and quantitative methods and information can assist decision making in complex settings.

  17. Effect of crop residue incorporation on soil organic carbon (SOC) and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in European agricultural soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehtinen, Taru; Schlatter, Norman; Baumgarten, Andreas; Bechini, Luca; Krüger, Janine; Grignani, Carlo; Zavattaro, Laura; Costamagna, Chiara; Spiegel, Heide

    2014-05-01

    Soil organic matter (SOM) improves soil physical (e.g. increased aggregate stability), chemical (e.g. cation exchange capacity) and biological (e.g. biodiversity, earthworms) properties. The sequestration of soil organic carbon (SOC) may mitigate climate change. However, as much as 25-75% of the initial SOC in world agricultural soils may have been lost due to intensive agriculture (Lal, 2013). The European Commission has described the decline of organic matter (OM) as one of the major threats to soils (COM(2006) 231). Incorporation of crop residues may be a sustainable and cost-efficient management practice to maintain the SOC levels and to increase soil fertility in European agricultural soils. Especially Mediterranean soils that have low initial SOC concentrations, and areas where stockless croplands predominate may be suitable for crop residue incorporation. In this study, we aim to quantify the effects of crop residue incorporation on SOC and GHG emissions (CO2 and N2O) in different environmental zones (ENZs, Metzger et al., 2005) in Europe. Response ratios for SOC and GHG emissions were calculated from pairwise comparisons between crop residue incorporation and removal. Specifically, we investigated whether ENZs, clay content and experiment duration influence the response ratios. In addition, we studied how response ratios of SOM and crop yields were correlated. A total of 718 response ratios (RR) were derived from a total of 39 publications, representing 50 experiments (46 field and 4 laboratory) and 15 countries. The SOC concentrations and stocks increased by approximately 10% following crop residue incorporation. In contrast, CO2 emissions were approximately six times and N2O emissions 12 times higher following crop residue incorporation. The effect of ENZ on the response ratios was not significant. For SOC concentration, the >35% clay content had significantly approximately 8% higher response ratios compared to 18-35% clay content. As the duration of the

  18. Rural tourism associated with agriculture as an economic alternative for the farmers

    OpenAIRE

    Calado, Luísa; Rodrigues, Ana; Silveira, Paulo; Dentinho, Tomaz

    2011-01-01

    This paper aims at presenting a possible approach to identify the best sites for rural tourism and also to analyze the synergies between agriculture and cultural heritage in Azores, in order to be incorporated in the full range of management concerns into private and public decision‑making. The following territorial aptitudes for alternative were used to simulate this exercise: urban, touristic, horticulture, agricultural, cattle and forestry. Soil potential was defined in a...

  19. Development of Mutant Varieties of Crop Plants at NIAB and the Impact on Agricultural Production in Pakistan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Nuclear Institute for Agriculture and Biology is the prime institute of Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission in the agricultural sector. It began to function in 1969. The main objective of the institute is to conduct research in agricultural and biological problems, especially in those areas where nuclear techniques have an edge over conventional methods. The institute has been conducting research and development work related to crop improvement through mutation breeding. Mutation breeding involves the use of induced beneficial changes for practical plant breeding purposes both directly as well as indirectly. The main objectives have been to confer specific changes such as improvement of plant architecture, earliness in maturity, resistance against diseases and pests, and improved physiological characters, i.e. heat tolerance, cold tolerance, uniform maturity, photoperiod insensitivity etc., in the native well adapted crop varieties/exotic lines to make them more productive. The use of induced mutations for crop improvement has lead to the development of 24 improved varieties of different crops at NIAB which clearly indicates the potential of this technique. In addition, a wealth of genetic variability has been developed for use in the cross breeding programmes and a few varieties of cotton and chickpea have been developed in Pakistan by using induced mutants as one of the parents. These improved crop varieties in Pakistan have played a significant role in increasing agricultural production with positive impact on the economy of the country. The estimated additional income accounted by the selected varieties of NIAB was 1.744 billion US dollars up to 2005. (author)

  20. Early agriculture and crop transmission among Bronze Age mobile pastoralists of Central Eurasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spengler, Robert; Frachetti, Michael; Doumani, Paula; Rouse, Lynne; Cerasetti, Barbara; Bullion, Elissa; Mar'yashev, Alexei

    2014-05-22

    Archaeological research in Central Eurasia is exposing unprecedented scales of trans-regional interaction and technology transfer between East Asia and southwest Asia deep into the prehistoric past. This article presents a new archaeobotanical analysis from pastoralist campsites in the mountain and desert regions of Central Eurasia that documents the oldest known evidence for domesticated grains and farming among seasonally mobile herders. Carbonized grains from the sites of Tasbas and Begash illustrate the first transmission of southwest Asian and East Asian domesticated grains into the mountains of Inner Asia in the early third millennium BC. By the middle second millennium BC, seasonal camps in the mountains and deserts illustrate that Eurasian herders incorporated the cultivation of millet, wheat, barley and legumes into their subsistence strategy. These findings push back the chronology for domesticated plant use among Central Eurasian pastoralists by approximately 2000 years. Given the geography, chronology and seed morphology of these data, we argue that mobile pastoralists were key agents in the spread of crop repertoires and the transformation of agricultural economies across Asia from the third to the second millennium BC. PMID:24695428

  1. Phytotoxic risk assessment of ambient air pollution on agricultural crops in Selangor State, Malaysia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The phytotoxic risk of ambient air pollution to local vegetation was assessed in Selangor State, Malaysia. The AOT40 value was calculated by means of the continuously monitored daily maximum concentration and the local diurnal pattern of O3. Together with minor risks associated with the levels of NO2 and SO2, the study found that the monthly AOT40 values in these peri-urban sites were consistently over 1.0 ppm.h, which is well in exceedance of the given European critical level. Linking the O3 level to actual agricultural crop production in Selangor State also indicated that the extent of yield losses could have ranged from 1.6 to 5.0% (by weight) in 2000. Despite a number of uncertainties, the study showed a simple but useful methodological framework for phytotoxic risk assessment with a limited data set, which could contribute to appropriate policy discussion and countermeasures in countries under similar conditions. - There is a large potential of phytotoxic risk on vegetation in Selangor State, Malaysia

  2. Crop Variety Improvement and Its Effects on Productivity: The Impact of International Agricultural Research

    OpenAIRE

    Evenson, R. E. (ed.); Gollin, D. (ed.)

    2003-01-01

    Metadata only record This resource aims to document the impact of international research on crop genetic improvement in developing countries. It focused on 11 major food crops: rice, wheat, maize, sorghum, millet, barley, beans, lentils, groundnut, cassava, and potato.

  3. Effects of Reduced Terrestrial LiDAR Point Density on High-Resolution Grain Crop Surface Models in Precision Agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Martin Hämmerle; Bernhard Höfle

    2014-01-01

    3D geodata play an increasingly important role in precision agriculture, e.g., for modeling in-field variations of grain crop features such as height or biomass. A common data capturing method is LiDAR, which often requires expensive equipment and produces large datasets. This study contributes to the improvement of 3D geodata capturing efficiency by assessing the effect of reduced scanning resolution on crop surface models (CSMs). The analysis is based on high-end LiDAR point clouds of grain...

  4. Remote Sensing Based Detection of Crop Phenology for Agricultural Zones in China Using a New Threshold Method

    OpenAIRE

    Taifeng Dong; Miao Zhang; Xingzhi You; Jihua Meng

    2013-01-01

    In recent years, the use of high temporal resolution satellite data has been emerging as an important tool to study crop phenology. Most methods to detect phenological events based on satellite data use thresholds to identify key events in the lifecycle of the crop. In this study, a new method was used to define such thresholds for identifying the start and end of the growing season (SOS/EOS) for 43 different agricultural zones in China. The method used 2000–2003 NOAA Advanced Very High Resol...

  5. Automatic Training Site Selection for Agricultural Crop Classification: a Case Study on Karacabey Plain, Turkey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozdarici Ok, A.; Akyurek, Z.

    2011-09-01

    This study implements a traditional supervised classification method to an optical image composed of agricultural crops by means of a unique way, selecting the training samples automatically. Panchromatic (1m) and multispectral (4m) Kompsat-2 images (July 2008) of Karacabey Plain (~100km2), located in Marmara region, are used to evaluate the proposed approach. Due to the characteristic of rich, loamy soils combined with reasonable weather conditions, the Karacabey Plain is one of the most valuable agricultural regions of Turkey. Analyses start with applying an image fusion algorithm on the panchromatic and multispectral image. As a result of this process, 1m spatial resolution colour image is produced. In the next step, the four-band fused (1m) image and multispectral (4m) image are orthorectified. Next, the fused image (1m) is segmented using a popular segmentation method, Mean- Shift. The Mean-Shift is originally a method based on kernel density estimation and it shifts each pixel to the mode of clusters. In the segmentation procedure, three parameters must be defined: (i) spatial domain (hs), (ii) range domain (hr), and (iii) minimum region (MR). In this study, in total, 176 parameter combinations (hs, hr, and MR) are tested on a small part of the area (~10km2) to find an optimum segmentation result, and a final parameter combination (hs=18, hr=20, and MR=1000) is determined after evaluating multiple goodness measures. The final segmentation output is then utilized to the classification framework. The classification operation is applied on the four-band multispectral image (4m) to minimize the mixed pixel effect. Before the image classification, each segment is overlaid with the bands of the image fused, and several descriptive statistics of each segment are computed for each band. To select the potential homogeneous regions that are eligible for the selection of training samples, a user-defined threshold is applied. After finding those potential regions, the

  6. How Seasonal Drought Affect Carbon and Water Fluxes of Alternative Energy Crops in the US?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joo, E.; Hussain, M. Z.; Zeri, M.; Masters, M.; Gomez-Casanovas, N.; DeLucia, E. H.; Bernacchi, C.

    2014-12-01

    The cellulosic biomass of Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.), Miscanthus (Miscanthus giganteus) and native prairie are considered candidate second-generation biofuels, potentially resulting in partial replacement annual row crops within the Midwestern US. There is an increasing focus to study the environmental impact of agricultural crops, however not much is known on the influence on the energy, carbon and water cycles of energy crops, especially under drought conditions. This study compares the impact of drought episodes (in 2011 and 2012) on evapotranspiration (ET), net ecosystem productivity (NEP) and water use efficiency (WUE; equals to NEP/ET) for Switchgrass (SW), Miscanthus (MXG), Maize (MZ) and native prairie (NP) grown in Central Illinois using the eddy covariance technique. Due to the prolonged drought and the rapid growth development with increasing ET of MXG in 2012, large water deficit (precipitation-ET) was observed for each species up to the highest deficit of -360 mm for this species. The gross primary production (GPP) of MZ was radically decreased by the drought in 2011 and 2012, while SW and NP were not influenced. MXG increased NEP throughout the typically wet and drought years, mainly due to the decrease in respiration and by the largest GPP upon the drought in 2012. Despite having the largest water deficit, MXG showed an enhanced WUE of 12.8 and 11.4 Kg C ha-1mm-1 in 2011 and 2012, respectively, in comparison to years typical to the region with WUE of 3.7-7.3 Kg C ha-1mm-1. Other species did not show a significant enhancement of WUE. Therefore we conclude that out of the studied species, MXG has more access to water, and uses this water the most efficiently to store carbon, under drought conditions.

  7. Alternatives to neonicotinoid insecticides for pest control: case studies in agriculture and forestry

    OpenAIRE

    Furlan, Lorenzo; Kreutzweiser, David

    2014-01-01

    Neonicotinoid insecticides are widely used for control of insect pests around the world and are especially pervasive in agricultural pest management. There is a growing body of evidence indicating that the broad-scale and prophylactic uses of neonicotinoids pose serious risks of harm to beneficial organisms and their ecological function. This provides the impetus for exploring alternatives to neonicotinoid insecticides for controlling insect pests. We draw from examples of alternative pest co...

  8. Separate Tables: Segregation, Gentrification, and the Commons in Birmingham, Alabama's Alternative Food and Agriculture Movement

    OpenAIRE

    Henson, Zachary Floyd

    2013-01-01

    Birmingham, Alabama has a long history of racial conflict and segregation. This dissertation investigates that how that history has shaped space in the region and the consequences of that spatial production on the current alternative food and agriculture movement. Specifically, I analyze three processes that produce Birmingham's racialized space - capital accumulation, racialization, and commoning. I first look at how Birmingham's segregated space shapes the initiatives of the alternative ...

  9. Social Science Studies on European and African Agriculture Compared: Bringing Together Different Strands of Academic Debate on GM Crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klara Fischer

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available This study explored the social science-orientated literature on genetically modified (GM crops in Europe and compared it with the corresponding literature on GM crops in African contexts, in order to determine the nature and extent of north-south cross-fertilisation in the literature. A total of 1625 papers on GM crops and agriculture falling within the ‘social science and humanities’ subject area in the Scopus abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature were analysed for major trends relating to geographical areas. More detailed analysis was performed on papers discussing African (56 papers and European (127 papers contexts. The analysis revealed that studies on policy and politics were common in both strands of the literature, frequently focusing on effects of the relatively restrictive European Union regulations on GM crops. There were also clear differences, however. For example, papers focusing on Africa frequently examined farm-level impacts and production, while this theme was almost non-existent in the Europe literature. It focused instead on policy impacts on trade and consumer attitudes to GM products. The lack of farm-level studies and of empirical studies in general in the European literature indicates a need for empirical research on GM crops in European farming. Social science research on GM crop production in Europe could draw lessons from the African literature.

  10. A synthesis of AOT40-based response functions and critical levels of ozone for agricultural and horticultural crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, G.; Buse, A.; Gimeno, B.; Bermejo, V.; Holland, M.; Emberson, L.; Pleijel, H.

    Crop-response data from over 700 published papers and conference proceedings have been analysed with the aim of establishing ozone dose-response functions for a wide range of European agricultural and horticultural crops. Data that met rigorous selection criteria (e.g. field-based, ozone concentrations within European range, full season exposure period) were used to derive AOT40-yield response functions for 19 crops by first converting the published ozone concentration data into AOT40 (AOT40 is the hourly mean ozone concentration accumulated over a threshold ozone concentration of 40 ppb during daylight hours, units ppm h). For any individual crop, there were no significant differences in the linear response functions derived for experiments conducted in the USA or Europe, or for individual cultivars. Three statistically independent groups were identified: ozone sensitive crops (wheat, water melon, pulses, cotton, turnip, tomato, onion, soybean and lettuce); moderately sensitive crops (sugar beet, potato, oilseed rape, tobacco, rice, maize, grape and broccoli) and ozone resistant (barley and fruit represented by plum and strawberry). Critical levels of a 3 month AOT40 of 3 ppm h and a 3.5 month AOT40 of 6 ppm h were derived from the functions for wheat and tomato, respectively.

  11. A Strategic Approach to the Implementation of Precision Agriculture Principles in Cash Crop Farming

    OpenAIRE

    Maine, Ntsikane; Nell, Wilhelm T.

    2005-01-01

    Precision agriculture is one of the important agricultural technologies that can assist farmers and managers in promoting long-term success. Precision agriculture can help farm managers increase their management capacity, which is of utmost importance in the highly competitive modern agriculture. Increased yields and/or efficient input use can also be achieved with precision agriculture. Precision agriculture also involve a large capital outlay and requires skills in interpreting the masses o...

  12. BIOGAS PRODUCTION FROM CATCH CROPS

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Molinuevo-Salces, Beatriz; Larsen, Søren U.; Ahring, Birgitte Kiær;

    2014-01-01

    Catch crop cultivation combined with its use for biogas production would increase renewable energy production in the form of methane, without interfering with the production of food and fodder crops. The low biomass yield of catch crops is the main limiting factor for using these crops as co......-substrate in manure-based biogas plants and the profit obtained from the sale of biogas barely compensates for the harvest costs. A new agricultural strategy to harvest catch crops together with the residual straw of the main crop was investigated to increase the biomass and thereby the methane yield per hectare...... biomass. Leaving the straw on the field until harvest of the catch crop in the autumn could benefit biogas production due to the organic matter degradation of the straw taking place on the field during the autumn months. This new agricultural strategy may be a good alternative to achieve economically...

  13. Mapping changes in agricultural cropping frequency across Zimbabwe using cross-scale time-series remote sensing data and a novel signal decomposition method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khandelwal, A.; Van Den Hoek, J.; Sedano, F.; Kumar, V.; Tucker, C. J.

    2014-12-01

    A central challenge in agricultural remote sensing is the detection of changes in intra-annual cropping frequency, often necessary in monitoring crop productivity, agricultural management practices, or policy implementation. Though remote sensing imagery offers synoptic and systematic measurements relevant to monitoring crop phenology across spatial scales, broad-scale (i.e., country-wide) changes in cropping frequency have seldom been quantified due to spatio-temporal heterogeneity in phenological and climatic cycles, signal noise, and missing data resulting from cloud cover. For example, in Zimbabwe, once the breadbasket of southern Africa, large-scale changes to agricultural production followed land distribution policies introduced in the early 2000s. The diverse impacts of land reform on the agricultural economy continue to be debated yet the underlying changes in cropping frequency and pattern have never been systematically assessed. Using Zimbabwean agriculture as a case study and MODIS 16-day composite Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and complementary Landsat imagery collected since 2000 across Zimbabwe, this presentation introduces a novel time-series signal decomposition and spatiotemporal clustering approach to map intra-annual cropping frequency and changes therein. MODIS-derived results indicate a massive decline in double-cropped acreage since 2000, a complete overhaul of cropping pattern with the disaggregation of large-scale commercial farms into multiple smallholder plots, and a spatial contraction of double-cropped fields to peri-urban lands, while Landsat trends capture the recent emergence of small-scale double-cropping systems unseen in MODIS data. These findings provide an independent and objective assessment of field-level changes in agricultural productivity, spatiotemporally explicit land reform effects on large-scale as well as smallholder agriculture and potential for food production, and have importance for regional water

  14. SACRA – global data sets of satellite-derived crop calendars for agricultural simulations: an estimation of a high-resolution crop calendar using satellite-sensed NDVI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Kotsuki

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available To date, many studies have performed numerical estimations of food production and agricultural water demand to understand the present and future supply–demand relationship. A crop calendar (CC is an essential input datum to estimate food production and agricultural water demand accurately with the numerical estimations. CC defines the date or month when farmers plant and harvest in cropland. This study aims to develop a new global data set of a satellite-derived crop calendar for agricultural simulations (SACRA and reveal advantages and disadvantages of the satellite-derived CC compared to other global products. We estimate global CC at a spatial resolution of 5 min (≈10 km using the satellite-sensed NDVI data, which corresponds well to vegetation growth and death on the land surface. We first demonstrate that SACRA shows similar spatial pattern in planting date compared to a census-based product. Moreover, SACRA reflects a variety of CC in the same administrative unit, since it uses high-resolution satellite data. However, a disadvantage is that the mixture of several crops in a grid is not considered in SACRA. We also address that the cultivation period of SACRA clearly corresponds to the time series of NDVI. Therefore, accuracy of SACRA depends on the accuracy of NDVI used for the CC estimation. Although SACRA shows different CC from a census-based product in some regions, multiple usages of the two products are useful to take into consideration the uncertainty of the CC. An advantage of SACRA compared to the census-based products is that SACRA provides not only planting/harvesting dates but also a peak date from the time series of NDVI data.

  15. SACRA - global data sets of satellite-derived crop calendars for agricultural simulations: an estimation of a high-resolution crop calendar using satellite-sensed NDVI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotsuki, S.; Tanaka, K.

    2015-01-01

    To date, many studies have performed numerical estimations of food production and agricultural water demand to understand the present and future supply-demand relationship. A crop calendar (CC) is an essential input datum to estimate food production and agricultural water demand accurately with the numerical estimations. CC defines the date or month when farmers plant and harvest in cropland. This study aims to develop a new global data set of a satellite-derived crop calendar for agricultural simulations (SACRA) and reveal advantages and disadvantages of the satellite-derived CC compared to other global products. We estimate global CC at a spatial resolution of 5 min (≈10 km) using the satellite-sensed NDVI data, which corresponds well to vegetation growth and death on the land surface. We first demonstrate that SACRA shows similar spatial pattern in planting date compared to a census-based product. Moreover, SACRA reflects a variety of CC in the same administrative unit, since it uses high-resolution satellite data. However, a disadvantage is that the mixture of several crops in a grid is not considered in SACRA. We also address that the cultivation period of SACRA clearly corresponds to the time series of NDVI. Therefore, accuracy of SACRA depends on the accuracy of NDVI used for the CC estimation. Although SACRA shows different CC from a census-based product in some regions, multiple usages of the two products are useful to take into consideration the uncertainty of the CC. An advantage of SACRA compared to the census-based products is that SACRA provides not only planting/harvesting dates but also a peak date from the time series of NDVI data.

  16. Impacts of Watershed Characteristics and Crop Rotations on Winter Cover Crop Nitrate-Nitrogen Uptake Capacity within Agricultural Watersheds in the Chesapeake Bay Region.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sangchul Lee

    Full Text Available The adoption rate of winter cover crops (WCCs as an effective conservation management practice to help reduce agricultural nutrient loads in the Chesapeake Bay (CB is increasing. However, the WCC potential for water quality improvement has not been fully realized at the watershed scale. This study was conducted to evaluate the long-term impact of WCCs on hydrology and NO3-N loads in two adjacent watersheds and to identify key management factors that affect the effectiveness of WCCs using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT and statistical methods. Simulation results indicated that WCCs are effective for reducing NO3-N loads and their performance varied based on planting date, species, soil characteristics, and crop rotations. Early-planted WCCs outperformed late-planted WCCs on the reduction of NO3-N loads and early-planted rye (RE reduced NO3-N loads by ~49.3% compared to the baseline (no WCC. The WCCs were more effective in a watershed dominated by well-drained soils with increased reductions in NO3-N fluxes of ~2.5 kg N·ha-1 delivered to streams and ~10.1 kg N·ha-1 leached into groundwater compared to poorly-drained soils. Well-drained agricultural lands had higher transport of NO3-N in the soil profile and groundwater due to increased N leaching. Poorly-drained agricultural lands had lower NO3-N due to extensive drainage ditches and anaerobic soil conditions promoting denitrification. The performance of WCCs varied by crop rotations (i.e., continuous corn and corn-soybean, with increased N uptake following soybean crops due to the increased soil mineral N availability by mineralization of soybean residue compared to corn residue. The WCCs can reduce N leaching where baseline NO3-N loads are high in well-drained soils and/or when residual and mineralized N availability is high due to the cropping practices. The findings suggested that WCC implementation plans should be established in watersheds according to local edaphic and agronomic

  17. AVAILABILITY AND PHYSICAL PROPERTIES OF RESIDUES FROM MAJOR AGRICULTURAL CROPS FOR ENERGY CONVERSION THROUGH THERMOCHEMICAL PROCESSES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaning Zhang

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Plant residues from the major agricultural crops (wheat, rice, corn, soybean, sugarcane, coffee and cotton are abundantly available renewable resources that can be used to supply energy through thermochemical conversion processes. The available amounts of plant residues from these crops and their physical properties (moisture content, particle size, bulk density and porosity were determined. The annual residues from the wheat, rice, corn, soybean, sugarcane, coffee and cotton were 763.42, 698.10, 1729.92, 416.62, 16.85, 4.01 and 107.13 million tons, respectively. The total amount of plant residues was estimated at 3736.05 million tons with total energy content of 66.92 EJ. These residues can replace 2283.52 million tons of coal, 1551.78 million tons of oil and 1847.63 million m3 of natural gas. The moisture contents were 7.79, 6.58, 6.40, 7.30, 8.15, 7.86 and 7.45% for the wheat straw, rice straw, corn stalk, soybean stalk, sugarcane stalk, coffee husk and cotton stalk, respectively. The corn stalk and sugarcane stalk had a convex particle size distribution, the soybean stalk and cotton stalk had a concave particle size distribution, the wheat straw and rice straw had an increasing trend particle size distribution and the coffee husk had a decreasing trend particle size distribution. The average particle sizes for the wheat straw, rice straw, corn stalk, soybean stalk, sugarcane stalk, coffee husk and cotton stalk were 0.42, 0.40, 0.49, 0.43, 0.55, 0.67 and 0.38 mm, respectively. The average bulk density was 160.75, 166.29, 127.32, 242.34, 110.86, 349.06 and 230.55 kg m-3 for the wheat straw, rice straw, corn stalk, soybean stalk, sugarcane stalk, coffee husk and cotton stalk, respectively. The average porosity was 51.25, 83.20, 58.51, 68.03, 77.58, 64.85 and 74.55% for the wheat straw, rice straw, corn stalk, soybean stalk, sugarcane stalk, coffee husk and cotton stalk, respectively. The results obtained from this study indicate that different

  18. Prospects for dedicated energy crop production and attitudes towards agricultural straw use: The case of livestock farmers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Second generation biofuels utilising agricultural by-products (e.g. straw), or dedicated energy crops (DECs) produced on ‘marginal’ land, have been called for. A structured telephone survey of 263 livestock farmers, predominantly located in the west or ‘marginal’ upland areas of England captured data on attitudes towards straw use and DECs. Combined with farm physical and business data, the survey results show that 7.2% and 6.3% of farmers would respectively consider growing SRC and miscanthus, producing respective maximum potential English crop areas of 54,603 ha and 43,859 ha. If higher market prices for straw occurred, most livestock farmers would continue to buy straw. Reasons for not being willing to consider growing DECs include concerns over land quality, committing land for a long time period, lack of appropriate machinery, profitability, and time to financial return; a range of moral, land quality, production conflict and lack of crop knowledge factors were also cited. Results demonstrate limited potential for the production of DECs on livestock farms in England. Changes in policy support to address farmer concerns with respect to DECs will be required to incentivise farmers to increase energy crop production. Policy support for DEC production must be cognisant of farm-level economic, tenancy and personal objectives. - Highlights: • Survey of English livestock farms determining attitudes to dedicated energy crops. • 6.3% to 7.2% of surveyed farmers would consider growing energy crops. • Limited potential for dedicated energy crops on livestock farms in England. • Livestock farmers would continue to buy straw, even at higher market prices. • Wide range of reasons given for farmers’ decisions related to energy crops

  19. Crop rotation and seasonal effects on fatty acid profiles of neutral and phospholipids extracted from no-till agricultural soils

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ferrari, Alejandro E.; Ravnskov, Sabine; Larsen, John;

    2015-01-01

    winter differentially according to soil treatment being the smallest decrease inHR management 35%. Both PLFA and NLFA profiles showed strong potential to discriminatebetween different land uses. In winter samples, some rare or unknown fatty acids were relevant forthe discrimination of agricultural...... of NLFA in winter samples as ifhigh crop rotation improves lipids reserves in soil during winter more than in monocropping soilmanagement. In conclusion, PLFA and particularly NLFA profiles appear to provide useful andcomplementary information to obtain a footprint of different soil use and......Analysis of phospholipids (PLFA) and neutral lipids fatty acids (NLFA) was used to characterizeno-till productive agricultural soils associated with different crop rotation levels, replicated across a400 km transect in the Argentinean pampas, during two sampling seasons, summer and winter...

  20. THE MODERNIZATION OF AGRICULTURE AND BIOFUELPRODUCTION AS ALTERNATIVE ENERGY: A CRITICAL REFLECTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    VITOR MACHADO

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available This article discusses the policy implications of agricultural modernization implemented by the military - after 1964. This policy, which became known as the Green Revolution, on the one hand contributed to the development of big business, but another caused serious social and environmental impacts. Currently, not only in Brazil but all over the world, have been in a great debate about the need to find alternatives to contain the problems caused to the environment resulting from the use of high technology in the field. One alternative proposed by several researchers is to replace fossil fuels by biofuels. As we believe that the error is in the current model of agricultural production based on mass production, which serves the major markets, the attention in this article, the need to develop an agricultural model designed for small property, with the use of family work and agroecology.

  1. Is the possibility of replacing seed dressings containing neonicotinoids with other means of protection viable in major Polish agricultural crops?

    OpenAIRE

    Matyjaszczyk Ewa; Sobczak Joanna; Szulc Magdalena

    2015-01-01

    Following the limitations regarding the use of the neonicotinoids: clothianidin, thiamethoxam and imidacloprid there are no currently available insecticide seed dressings for oilseed rape in Poland. For maize here is only one seed dressing containing methiocarb available with a very narrow registered scope of use. The impact of limitations on protection possibilities of other major Polish agricultural crops is either negligible or non-existent. In consequence a group of economically important...

  2. Promoting food security through increased production and productivity of selected vegetables (under protected agriculture) and root crops

    OpenAIRE

    Wilson, M.

    2010-01-01

    Two issues form the basis of activities which characterize the CARDI initiatives within its work programme; the increasing urgency of regional food security and the emergence of issues within a background of limited resources and environmental change. In this context, increased production and productivity of vegetables under protected agriculture as well as root crops are the focus of two new projects being implemented by CARDI over the next three years. The projects are entitled as follows: ...

  3. Amazon river flow regime and flood recessional agriculture: Flood stage reversals and risk of annual crop loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coomes, Oliver T.; Lapointe, Michel; Templeton, Michael; List, Geneva

    2016-08-01

    The annual flood cycle is an important driver of ecosystem structure and function in large tropical rivers such as the Amazon. Riparian peasant communities rely on river fishing and annual floodplain agriculture, closely adapted to the recession phase of the flood pulse. This article reports on a poorly documented but important challenge facing farmers practicing flood recessional agriculture along the Amazon river: frequent, unpredictable stage reversals (repiquetes) which threaten to ruin crops growing on channel bars. We assess the severity of stage reversals for rice production on exposed river mud bars (barreales) near Iquitos, Peru. Crop loss risk is estimated based on a quantitative analysis of 45 years of daily Amazon stage data and field data from floodplain communities nearby in the Muyuy archipelago, upstream of Iquitos. Rice varieties selected, elevations of silt rich bars where rice is sown, as well as planting and harvest dates are analyzed in the light of the timing, frequencies and amplitudes of observed stage reversals that have the potential to destroy growing rice. We find that unpredictable stage reversals can produce substantial crop losses and shorten significantly the length of average growing seasons on lower elevation river bars. The data reveal that local famers extend planting down to lower bar elevations where the mean probabilities of re-submergence before rice maturity (due to reversals) approach 50%, below which they implicitly consider that the risk of crop loss outweighs the potential reward of planting.

  4. Conservation agriculture, a sustainable production alternative for the (sub)tropical highlands : toward an integrated evaluation of the system

    OpenAIRE

    Govaerts, Bram

    2007-01-01

    (Sub)tropical highlands of the world are densely populated and intensively cropped. Agricultural sustainability problems resulting from soil erosion and fertility decline have arisen throughout this agro-ecological zone. Major changes are needed in land, livestock and water management in line with traditional lifestyles and customs to remedy the agricultural system. Can conservation agriculture, based on three basic principles (1) minimal soil movement, (2) retention of rational amounts of cr...

  5. Comparing three gap filling methods for eddy covariance crop evapotranspiration measurements within a hilly agricultural catchment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boudhina, Nissaf; Prévot, Laurent; Zitouna Chebbi, Rim; Mekki, Insaf; Jacob, Frédéric; Ben Mechlia, Netij; Masmoudi, Moncef

    2015-04-01

    Hilly watersheds are widespread throughout coastal areas around the Mediterranean Basin. They experience agricultural intensification since hilly topographies allow water-harvesting techniques that compensate for rainfall storage, water being a strong limiting factor for crop production. Their fragility is likely to increase with climate change and human pressure. Within semi-arid hilly watershed conditions, evapotranspiration (ETR) is a major term of both land surface energy and water balances. Several methods allow determining ETR, based either on direct measurements, or on estimations and forecast from weather and soil moisture data using simulation models. Among these methods, eddy covariance technique is based on high-frequency measurements of fluctuations of wind speed and air temperature / humidity, to directly determine the convective fluxes between land surface and atmosphere. In spite of experimental and instrumental progresses, datasets of eddy covariance measurements often experience large portions of missing data. The latter results from energy power failure, experimental maintenance, instrumental troubles such as krypton hygrometer malfunctioning because of air humidity, or quality assessment based filtering in relation to spatial homogeneity and temporal stationarity of turbulence within surface boundary layer. This last item is all the more important as hilly topography, when combined with strong winds, tends to increase turbulence within surface boundary layer. The main objective of this study is to establish gap-filling procedures to provide complete chronicles of eddy-covariance measurements of crop evapotranspiration (ETR) within a hilly agricultural watershed. We focus on the specific conditions induced by the combination of hilly topography and wind direction, by discriminating between upslope and downslope winds. The experiment was set for three field configurations within hilly conditions: two flux measurement stations (A, B) were installed

  6. Comparison of Alternative Crop Phenology Detection Algorithms using MODIS NDVI Time Series Data in US Corn Belt Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, J.; Hong, S. Y.; Kang, S.

    2015-12-01

    Predicting crop phenology is important for understanding of crop development and growth processes and improving the accuracy of crop model. Remote sensing offers a feasible tool for monitoring spatio-temporal patterns of crop phenology in region and continental scales. Various methods have developed to determine the timing of crop phenological stages using spectral vegetation indices (i.e. NDVI and EVI) derived from satellite data. In our study, it was compared four alternative detection methods to identify crop phenological stages (i.e. the emergence and harvesting date) using high quality NDVI time series data derived from MODIS. In threshold method assumes the emergence and harvesting date when NDVI values exceed and decreases down to a given threshold, respectively. Two kind of threshold values were applied for NDVI and it increment for eight days. The other two methods use a logistic fitting model and inflection points on fitted curve, respectively. It was compared the four methods for corn and soybean, respectively. For validation, three kinds of datasets were utilized: AmeriFlux biological data of planting and harvest dates, and emergence date estimated from growing degree days (AGDDs) at flux tower sites, and state-level USDA Crop Progress Report (CPR). All methods showed substantial uncertainty but the threshold method showed relatively better agreement against with both site- and state-level data for soybean phenology. For better NDVI-based regional estimation of crop phenology, factors of uncertainty were examined and discussed in this study.

  7. Response to issues on GM agriculture in Africa: Are transgenic crops safe?

    OpenAIRE

    Adenle Ademola A

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The controversies surrounding transgenic crops, often called Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), call for a need to raise the level of public awareness of Genetic Modification (GM) technology in Africa. This should be accomplished by educating the public about the potential benefits and risks that may be associated with this new technology. In the last 15 years, GM crop producing countries have benefited from adoption of this new technology in the form of improved crop productivit...

  8. Designing public-private crop insurance in the northern limits of agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Liesivaara, Petri; Miranda P.M. Meuwissen

    2014-01-01

    Government financed crop damage compensation (CDC) scheme is covering crop losses in Finland. The scheme is about to be abolished. Crop insurance scheme based on public–private partnership will be in place in 2016. In this study, we analysed how government expenditure will change due to the policy shift. According to a stochastic simulation model, the government’s risk exposure will decrease and the mean expenditures for the government as well as the variability in expenditure between years a...

  9. Residues, spatial distribution and risk assessment of DDTs and HCHs in agricultural soil and crops from the Tibetan Plateau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Chuanfei; Wang, Xiaoping; Gong, Ping; Yao, Tandong

    2016-04-01

    Due to its high elevation and cold temperature, the Tibetan Plateau (TP) is regarded as the "Third Pole". Different from other polar regions, which are truly remote, the TP has a small population and a few agricultural activities. In this study, agricultural soil and crop samples (including highland barley and rape) were collected in the main farmland of the TP to obtain the contamination levels of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) in the Tibetan agricultural system as well as the relevant human exposure risks. The average concentrations of DDTs and HCHs in the agricultural soil, highland barley and rape were 1.36, 0.661, 1.03 ng/g dw and 0.349, 0.0364, 0.0225 ng/g dw, respectively. In the agricultural soil, DDTs and HCHs matabolism (DDE, DDD and β-HCH) were abundant, which indicated a "historical" source, whereas crops contained a similar composition ((DDE + DDD)/DDT, α/β-HCH and α/γ-HCH) to that of wild plants, suggesting that the DDTs and HCHs in crops are likely from long range atmospheric transport. The human health risks via non-dietary and dietary to DDTs and HCHs in the farmland were assessed. All of the hazard index (HI) values of DDTs and HCHs for non-carcinogenic risks were <1, and most of the cancer risk values were <10(-6), suggesting that DDTs and HCHs in the farmland will not pose non-carcinogenic risks and will pose only very low cancer risks to the Tibetan residents. PMID:26874624

  10. Rice Ratoon Crop: A Sustainable Rice Production System for Tropical Hill Agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Golam Faruq; Rosna Mat Taha; Zakaria H. Prodhan

    2014-01-01

    Increasing and sustainable production of rice in tropical hill area is facing various problems where rice ratooning can overcome the limitations. In this study; 22 rice entries were transplanted into experimental tank placed in the hill slope following Completely Randomized Design with five replications to asses’ agronomic performance of main crop and ratoon crop where Entry 13 demonstrated highest grain yield per plant (42.06 ± 1.2 gm) as main crop, as well as ratoon crop (3.37 ± 0.28 gm...

  11. Effects of reduced terrestrial LiDAR point density on high-resolution grain crop surface models in precision agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hämmerle, Martin; Höfle, Bernhard

    2014-01-01

    3D geodata play an increasingly important role in precision agriculture, e.g., for modeling in-field variations of grain crop features such as height or biomass. A common data capturing method is LiDAR, which often requires expensive equipment and produces large datasets. This study contributes to the improvement of 3D geodata capturing efficiency by assessing the effect of reduced scanning resolution on crop surface models (CSMs). The analysis is based on high-end LiDAR point clouds of grain crop fields of different varieties (rye and wheat) and nitrogen fertilization stages (100%, 50%, 10%). Lower scanning resolutions are simulated by keeping every n-th laser beam with increasing step widths n. For each iteration step, high-resolution CSMs (0.01 m2 cells) are derived and assessed regarding their coverage relative to a seamless CSM derived from the original point cloud, standard deviation of elevation and mean elevation. Reducing the resolution to, e.g., 25% still leads to a coverage of >90% and a mean CSM elevation of >96% of measured crop height. CSM types (maximum elevation or 90th-percentile elevation) react differently to reduced scanning resolutions in different crops (variety, density). The results can help to assess the trade-off between CSM quality and minimum requirements regarding equipment and capturing set-up. PMID:25521383

  12. New insights into phosphorus management in agriculture--A crop rotation approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Łukowiak, Remigiusz; Grzebisz, Witold; Sassenrath, Gretchen F

    2016-01-15

    This manuscript presents research results examining phosphorus (P) management in a soil–plant system for three variables: i) internal resources of soil available phosphorus, ii) cropping sequence, and iii) external input of phosphorus (manure, fertilizers). The research was conducted in long-term cropping sequences with oilseed rape (10 rotations) and maize (six rotations) over three consecutive growing seasons (2004/2005, 2005/2006, and 2006/2007) in a production farm on soils originated from Albic Luvisols in Poland. The soil available phosphorus pool, measured as calcium chloride extractable P (CCE-P), constituted 28% to 67% of the total phosphorus input (PTI) to the soil–plant system in the spring. Oilseed rape and maize dominant cropping sequences showed a significant potential to utilize the CCE-P pool within the soil profile. Cropping sequences containing oilseed rape significantly affected the CCE-P pool, and in turn contributed to the P(TI). The P(TI) uptake use efficiency was 50% on average. Therefore, the CCE-P pool should be taken into account as an important component of a sound and reliable phosphorus balance. The instability of the yield prediction, based on the P(TI), was mainly due to an imbalanced management of both farmyard manure and phosphorus fertilizer. Oilseed rape plants provide a significant positive impact on the CCE-P pool after harvest, improving the productive stability of the entire cropping sequence. This phenomenon was documented by the P(TI) increase during wheat cultivation following oilseed rape. The Unit Phosphorus Uptake index also showed a higher stability in oilseed rape cropping systems compared to rotations based on maize. Cropping sequences are a primary factor impacting phosphorus management. Judicious implementation of crop rotations can improve soil P resources, efficiency of crop P use, and crop yield and yield stability. Use of cropping sequences can reduce the need for external P sources such as farmyard manure

  13. Digital Mapping of Soil Salinity and Crop Yield across a Coastal Agricultural Landscape Using Repeated Electromagnetic Induction (EMI) Surveys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Rongjiang; Yang, Jingsong; Wu, Danhua; Xie, Wenping; Gao, Peng; Jin, Wenhui

    2016-01-01

    Reliable and real-time information on soil and crop properties is important for the development of management practices in accordance with the requirements of a specific soil and crop within individual field units. This is particularly the case in salt-affected agricultural landscape where managing the spatial variability of soil salinity is essential to minimize salinization and maximize crop output. The primary objectives were to use linear mixed-effects model for soil salinity and crop yield calibration with horizontal and vertical electromagnetic induction (EMI) measurements as ancillary data, to characterize the spatial distribution of soil salinity and crop yield and to verify the accuracy of spatial estimation. Horizontal and vertical EMI (type EM38) measurements at 252 locations were made during each survey, and root zone soil samples and crop samples at 64 sampling sites were collected. This work was periodically conducted on eight dates from June 2012 to May 2013 in a coastal salt-affected mud farmland. Multiple linear regression (MLR) and restricted maximum likelihood (REML) were applied to calibrate root zone soil salinity (ECe) and crop annual output (CAO) using ancillary data, and spatial distribution of soil ECe and CAO was generated using digital soil mapping (DSM) and the precision of spatial estimation was examined using the collected meteorological and groundwater data. Results indicated that a reduced model with EMh as a predictor was satisfactory for root zone ECe calibration, whereas a full model with both EMh and EMv as predictors met the requirement of CAO calibration. The obtained distribution maps of ECe showed consistency with those of EMI measurements at the corresponding time, and the spatial distribution of CAO generated from ancillary data showed agreement with that derived from raw crop data. Statistics of jackknifing procedure confirmed that the spatial estimation of ECe and CAO exhibited reliability and high accuracy. A general

  14. Digital Mapping of Soil Salinity and Crop Yield across a Coastal Agricultural Landscape Using Repeated Electromagnetic Induction (EMI) Surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Rongjiang; Yang, Jingsong; Wu, Danhua; Xie, Wenping; Gao, Peng; Jin, Wenhui

    2016-01-01

    Reliable and real-time information on soil and crop properties is important for the development of management practices in accordance with the requirements of a specific soil and crop within individual field units. This is particularly the case in salt-affected agricultural landscape where managing the spatial variability of soil salinity is essential to minimize salinization and maximize crop output. The primary objectives were to use linear mixed-effects model for soil salinity and crop yield calibration with horizontal and vertical electromagnetic induction (EMI) measurements as ancillary data, to characterize the spatial distribution of soil salinity and crop yield and to verify the accuracy of spatial estimation. Horizontal and vertical EMI (type EM38) measurements at 252 locations were made during each survey, and root zone soil samples and crop samples at 64 sampling sites were collected. This work was periodically conducted on eight dates from June 2012 to May 2013 in a coastal salt-affected mud farmland. Multiple linear regression (MLR) and restricted maximum likelihood (REML) were applied to calibrate root zone soil salinity (ECe) and crop annual output (CAO) using ancillary data, and spatial distribution of soil ECe and CAO was generated using digital soil mapping (DSM) and the precision of spatial estimation was examined using the collected meteorological and groundwater data. Results indicated that a reduced model with EMh as a predictor was satisfactory for root zone ECe calibration, whereas a full model with both EMh and EMv as predictors met the requirement of CAO calibration. The obtained distribution maps of ECe showed consistency with those of EMI measurements at the corresponding time, and the spatial distribution of CAO generated from ancillary data showed agreement with that derived from raw crop data. Statistics of jackknifing procedure confirmed that the spatial estimation of ECe and CAO exhibited reliability and high accuracy. A general

  15. Analysis of the spatial variability of crop yield and soil properties in small agricultural plots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vieira Sidney Rosa

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to assess spatial variability of soil properties and crop yield under no tillage as a function of time, in two soil/climate conditions in São Paulo State, Brazil. The two sites measured approximately one hectare each and were cultivated with crop sequences which included corn, soybean, cotton, oats, black oats, wheat, rye, rice and green manure. Soil fertility, soil physical properties and crop yield were measured in a 10-m grid. The soils were a Dusky Red Latossol (Oxisol and a Red Yellow Latossol (Ultisol. Soil sampling was performed in each field every two years after harvesting of the summer crop. Crop yield was measured at the end of each crop cycle, in 2 x 2.5 m sub plots. Data were analysed using semivariogram analysis and kriging interpolation for contour map generation. Yield maps were constructed in order to visually compare the variability of yields, the variability of the yield components and related soil properties. The results show that the factors affecting the variability of crop yield varies from one crop to another. The changes in yield from one year to another suggest that the causes of variability may change with time. The changes with time for the cross semivariogram between phosphorus in leaves and soybean yield is another evidence of this result.

  16. The impact of climate and price risks on agricultural land use and crop management decisions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lehmann, N.; Finger, R.

    2013-01-01

    This article aims to investigate the impacts of climate change and of lower and more volatile crop price levels as currently observed in the European Union (EU) on optimal management decisions, average income and income risks in crop production in Western Switzerland. To this end, a bioeconomic whol

  17. Assessing Agricultural Risks of Climate Change in the 21st Century in a Global Gridded Crop Model Intercomparison

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenzweig, Cynthia E.; Elliott, Joshua; Deryng, Delphine; Ruane, Alex C.; Mueller, Christoph; Arneth, Almut; Boote, Kenneth J.; Folberth, Christian; Glotter, Michael; Khabarov, Nikolay

    2014-01-01

    Here we present the results from an intercomparison of multiple global gridded crop models (GGCMs) within the framework of the Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project and the Inter-Sectoral Impacts Model Intercomparison Project. Results indicate strong negative effects of climate change, especially at higher levels of warming and at low latitudes; models that include explicit nitrogen stress project more severe impacts. Across seven GGCMs, five global climate models, and four representative concentration pathways, model agreement on direction of yield changes is found in many major agricultural regions at both low and high latitudes; however, reducing uncertainty in sign of response in mid-latitude regions remains a challenge. Uncertainties related to the representation of carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and high temperature effects demonstrated here show that further research is urgently needed to better understand effects of climate change on agricultural production and to devise targeted adaptation strategies.

  18. Guidelines regarding the interim use and phase out of neonicotinoid insecticides to grow agricultural crops for wildlife on NWRs in the Pacific Region

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Memorandum describing a phased approach in the Pacific Region to eliminate the use of neonicotinoidinsecticides (by any method) to grow agricultural crops for...

  19. Preservation of the Environment through Sustainable Agriculture Practices: A Case Study on the Attitude of Crop Farmers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey L. D’Silva

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: Undoubtedly agriculture over the years has been a remarkable source of income generator for the rural community to achieve a higher standard of living and to live on par with their urban brethren that are mostly involved in industrialization. The quest for a greater income should, however, not deter farmers from paying attention toward the preservation of the environment in terms of protecting the quality of land, air and water so that our present and future generation will be able to have sufficient resources for their survival. Thus, having a positive attitude toward practicing the elements of sustainable agriculture without doubt will help farmers to emphasize on the need to protect the environment. As such, this study is designed to understand contract farming entrepreneurs’ attitude toward the preservation of the environment through sustainable agriculture practices and the issues involved in determining their level of attitude. Approach: The study employed qualitative methodology in the form of a focus group discussion and the data was collected from seven contract farming entrepreneurs in Cameron Highlands, Malaysia. In the data collection process, the researcher played the role as the instrument and an interview guide that was developed prior to it enabled the researcher to achieve the objectives of the study. A couple of voice-recorders assisted in recording the discussion and it was later transformed into verbatim transcripts for data analysis. Results: The outcome of the study showed that in general, crop farmers face an upheaval task in possessing a positive attitude toward practicing sustainable agriculture in spite of having a sound knowledge about it. They perceive that much support is needed from the respective stakeholders that would enable them to embrace sustainable agriculture practices. Conclusion/Recommendations: It is recommended that various stakeholders could play more important

  20. Construction and Establishment of Sci-tech Platform for Agricultural Scientific Research Institutions :A Case Study of Tropical Crops Genetic Resources Institute of Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences

    OpenAIRE

    Chen, Lizhen; Zheng, Yu; Luo, Haiyan; Yao, Qingqun

    2014-01-01

    Taking Tropical Crops Genetic Resources Institute (TCGRI) of Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences (CATAS) as an example, this paper discussed current situation of construction of sci-tech platform, analyzed existing problems, and finally came up with pertinent recommendations.

  1. Agricultural biology in the 3rd millennium: nutritional food security & specialty crops through sustainable agriculture and biotechnology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Food security and agricultural sustainability are of prime concern in the world today in light of the increasing trends in population growth in most parts of the globe excepting Europe. The need to develop capacity to produce more to feed more people is complicated since the arable land is decreasin...

  2. Towards a Quantitative Use of Satellite Remote Sensing in Crop Growth Models for Large Scale Agricultural Production Estimate (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Defourny, P.

    2013-12-01

    The development of better agricultural monitoring capabilities is clearly considered as a critical step for strengthening food production information and market transparency thanks to timely information about crop status, crop area and yield forecasts. The documentation of global production will contribute to tackle price volatility by allowing local, national and international operators to make decisions and anticipate market trends with reduced uncertainty. Several operational agricultural monitoring systems are currently operating at national and international scales. Most are based on the methods derived from the pioneering experiences completed some decades ago, and use remote sensing to qualitatively compare one year to the others to estimate the risks of deviation from a normal year. The GEO Agricultural Monitoring Community of Practice described the current monitoring capabilities at the national and global levels. An overall diagram summarized the diverse relationships between satellite EO and agriculture information. There is now a large gap between the current operational large scale systems and the scientific state of the art in crop remote sensing, probably because the latter mainly focused on local studies. The poor availability of suitable in-situ and satellite data over extended areas hampers large scale demonstrations preventing the much needed up scaling research effort. For the cropland extent, this paper reports a recent research achievement using the full ENVISAT MERIS 300 m archive in the context of the ESA Climate Change Initiative. A flexible combination of classification methods depending to the region of the world allows mapping the land cover as well as the global croplands at 300 m for the period 2008 2012. This wall to wall product is then compared with regards to the FP 7-Geoland 2 results obtained using as Landsat-based sampling strategy over the IGADD countries. On the other hand, the vegetation indices and the biophysical variables

  3. Radiation interception and modelling as an alternative to destructive samples in crop growth measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Growth analysis presently uses destructive samples to detect temporal variations in biomass. The destructive nature of the measurements, their cost, and statistical considerations limit the application of growth studies in many domains of crop science. In contrast radiation interception data are cheap and easy to obtain without destruction of experimental material. Biomass may be modelled as the product of cumulative radiation intercepted by the crop [ΣI] and a radiation use efficiency coefficient [e]. Therefore, in theory, an alternative to destructive samples is provided by measurement of I at intervals during growth and e. The success of this approach depends on the validity of the value of e and its constancy through time. With measurement of I at intervals the mean radiation use efficiency [Σ] can be estimated from the seasonal ΣI and the final harvest data. The Σ can then be used with the time series data for ΣI to estimate the biomass for that plot for any date. To test this approach model-derived biomass data were compared with data from destructive samples at seven dates for six groundnut germplasm lines grown in water limiting and fully irrigated conditions. The model-derived data was consistently less than destructively obtained data when the plants were small. This bias was an artifact of the interception measurement technique used not being accurate for small plants. Once plants were tall enough for fractional interception to be measured without substantial error, the nondestructive method effectively described the growth of the well-watered crops. For the drought treatments, it was less effective. However, by dealing with the phases of growth separately, good correlation between the two methods was achieved. An important assumption in the method is that the final harvest biomass is a realistic reflection of the preceding growth, since the model method forces the estimates of growth to that point. In one germplasm line this assumption was not

  4. The Effect of Organic and Conventional Cropping Systems on CO2 Emission from Agricultural Soils: Preliminary Results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Grego

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available The effects of different agricultural systems on soil organic carbon content and CO2 emission are investigated in this work. In a long-term experiment a conventional system, characterized by traditional agricultural practices (as deep tillage and chemical inputs was compared with an organic one, including green manure and organic fertilizers. Both systems have a three-year crop rotation including pea – durum wheat – tomato; the organic system is implemented with the introduction of common vetch (Vicia sativa L. and sorghum (Sorghum vulgare bicolor as cover crops. In the year 2006 (5 years after the experimentation beginning was determined the soil C content and was measured the CO2 emissions from soil. The first results showed a trend of CO2 production higher in organic soils in comparison with conventional one. Among the two compared cropping systems the higher differences of CO2 emission were observed in tomato soil respect to the durum wheat and pea soils, probably due to the vetch green manuring before the tomato transplanting. These results are in agreement with the total organic carbon content and water soluble carbon (WSC, which showed the highest values in organic soil. The first observations suggest a higher biological activity and CO2 emission in organic soil than conventional one, likely due to a higher total carbon soil content.

  5. Modelling adaptation to climate change of Ecuadorian agriculture and associated water resources: uncertainties in coastal and highland cropping systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Ramos, Margarita; Bastidas, Wellington; Cóndor, Amparo; Villacís, Marcos; Calderón, Marco; Herrera, Mario; Zambrano, José Luis; Lizaso, Jon; Hernández, Carlos; Rodríguez, Alfredo; Capa-Morocho, Mirian

    2016-04-01

    Climate change threatens sustainability of farms and associated water resources in Ecuador. Although the last IPCC report (AR5) provides a general framework for adaptation, , impact assessment and especially adaptation analysis should be site-specific, taking into account both biophysical and social aspects. The objective of this study is to analyse the climate change impacts and to sustainable adaptations to optimize the crop yield. Furthermore is also aimed to weave agronomical and hydrometeorological aspects, to improve the modelling of the coastal ("costa") and highland ("sierra") cropping systems in Ecuador, from the agricultural production and water resources points of view. The final aim is to support decision makers, at national and local institutions, for technological implementation of structural adaptation strategies, and to support farmers for their autonomous adaptation actions to cope with the climate change impacts and that allow equal access to resources and appropriate technologies. . A diagnosis of the current situation in terms of data availability and reliability was previously done, and the main sources of uncertainty for agricultural projections have been identified: weather data, especially precipitation projections, soil data below the upper 30 cm, and equivalent experimental protocol for ecophysiological crop field measurements. For reducing these uncertainties, several methodologies are being discussed. This study was funded by PROMETEO program from Ecuador through SENESCYT (M. Ruiz-Ramos contract), and by the project COOP-XV-25 funded by Universidad Politécnica de Madrid.

  6. Assimilation of Downscaled SMOS Soil Moisture for Quantifying Drought Impacts on Crop Yield in Agricultural Regions in Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chakrabarti, S.; Bongiovanni, T. E.; Judge, J.; Principe, J. C.; Fraisse, C.

    2013-12-01

    Reliable soil moisture (SM) information in the root zone (RZSM) is critical for quantification of agricultural drought impacts on crop yields and for recommending management and adaptation strategies for crop management, commodity trading and food security.The recently launched European Space Agency-Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (ESA-SMOS) and the near-future National Aeronautics and Space Administration-Soil Moisture Active Passive (NASA-SMAP) missions provide SM at unprecedented spatial resolutions of 10-25 km, but these resolutions are still too coarse for agricultural applications in heterogeneous landscapes, making downscaling a necessity. This downscaled near-surface SM can be merged with crop growth models in a data assimilation framework to provide optimal estimates of RZSM and crop yield. The objectives of the study include: 1) to implement a novel downscalingalgorithm based on the Information theoretical learning principlesto downscale SMOS soil moisture at 25 km to 1km in the Brazilian La Plata Basin region and2) to assimilate the 1km-soil moisture in the crop model for a normal and a drought year to understand the impact on crop yield. In this study, a novel downscaling algorithm based on the Principle of Relevant Information (PRI) was applied to in-situ and remotely sensed precipitation, SM, land surface temperature and leaf area index in the Brazilian Lower La Plata region in South America. An Ensemble Kalman Filter (EnKF) based assimilation algorithm was used to assimilate the downscaled soil moisture to update both states and parameters. The downscaled soil moisture for two growing seasons in2010-2011 and 2011-2012 was assimilated into the Decision Support System for Agrotechnology Transfer (DSSAT) Cropping System Model over 161 km2 rain-fed region in the Brazilian LPB regionto improve the estimates of soybean yield. The first season experienced normal precipitation, while the second season was impacted by drought. Assimilation improved yield

  7. Cultural Methods as an Alternative Approach to Assessing Mycotoxin Contamination in Crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contamination with aflatoxins and other mycotoxins is a major problem worldwide for numerous types of crops in addition to tree nuts. Aflatoxins are the major determinant of crop quality in several crops in developed countries, where government regulation is extensive, and the cost of monitoring my...

  8. McSustainability and McJustice: Certification, Alternative Food and Agriculture, and Social Change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maki Hatanaka

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Alternative food and agriculture movements increasingly rely on market-based approaches, particularly voluntary standards and certification, to advance environmental sustainability and social justice. Using a case study of an ecological shrimp project in Indonesia that became certified organic, this paper raises concerns regarding the impacts of certification on alternative food and agriculture movements, and their aims of furthering sustainability and justice. Drawing on George Ritzer’s McDonaldization framework, I argue that the ecological shrimp project became McDonaldized with the introduction of voluntary standards and certification. Specifically, efficiency, calculability, predictability, and control became key characteristics of the shrimp project. While the introduction of such characteristics increased market access, it also entailed significant costs, including an erosion of trust and marginalization and alienation of farmers. Given such tradeoffs, in concluding I propose that certification is producing particular forms of environmental sustainability and social justice, what I term McSustainability and McJustice. While enabling the expansion of alternative food and agriculture, McSustainability and McJustice tend to allow little opportunity for farmer empowerment and food sovereignty, as well as exclude aspects of sustainable farming or ethical production that are not easily measured, standardized, and validated.

  9. Systems Biology for Smart Crops and Agricultural Innovation: Filling the Gaps between Genotype and Phenotype for Complex Traits Linked with Robust Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Anil; Pathak, Rajesh Kumar; Gupta, Sanjay Mohan; Gaur, Vikram Singh; Pandey, Dinesh

    2015-10-01

    In recent years, rapid developments in several omics platforms and next generation sequencing technology have generated a huge amount of biological data about plants. Systems biology aims to develop and use well-organized and efficient algorithms, data structure, visualization, and communication tools for the integration of these biological data with the goal of computational modeling and simulation. It studies crop plant systems by systematically perturbing them, checking the gene, protein, and informational pathway responses; integrating these data; and finally, formulating mathematical models that describe the structure of system and its response to individual perturbations. Consequently, systems biology approaches, such as integrative and predictive ones, hold immense potential in understanding of molecular mechanism of agriculturally important complex traits linked to agricultural productivity. This has led to identification of some key genes and proteins involved in networks of pathways involved in input use efficiency, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, photosynthesis efficiency, root, stem and leaf architecture, and nutrient mobilization. The developments in the above fields have made it possible to design smart crops with superior agronomic traits through genetic manipulation of key candidate genes. PMID:26484978

  10. Connectivity of the American agricultural landscape: Assessing the national risk of crop pest and disease spread

    OpenAIRE

    Margosian, M.L.; Garrett, Karen A.; J.M.S. Hutchinson; With, K.A.

    2008-01-01

    We have developed a new approach for national evaluation of disease and pest risk based on networks of crop plant availability. We are in the process of generalizing this analysis for other countries.

  11. A Review of 'Crop Protection in Medieval Agriculture. Studies in Pre-Modern Organic'

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Pautasso

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available This brilliant and original book by Jan Zadoks, a renowned, prolific and polyglot Dutch plant epidemiologist [2], provides a systematic, learned and well-structured overview of our understanding of medieval crop protection in Europe.

  12. Soil-to-crop transfer factors of radium in Japanese agricultural fields

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The concentrations of 226Ra in upland field crops (e.g., cabbage, leek, onion, potato, and so on) and associated soils collected from 45 locations throughout Japan were determined in order to obtain soil-to-crop transfer factors (TFs). Concentrations of 226Ra in the soils collected in southwestern Japan were higher than those in northeastern Japan; however, no correlations between 226Ra concentrations in crops and soils were observed. The TFs ranged from -3 to 5.8 x 10-2 with a geometric mean of 6.4 x 10-3. These data were within the 95% confidential range of TF-Ra for several crops as reported in the IAEA Technical Reports Series No.364. Among the alkaline earth metals. TF-Ba was similar to TF-Ra. (author)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qadir, M; Oster, J D

    2004-05-01

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

  14. The Combination of Uav Survey and Landsat Imagery for Monitoring of Crop Vigor in Precision Agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukas, V.; Novák, J.; Neudert, L.; Svobodova, I.; Rodriguez-Moreno, F.; Edrees, M.; Kren, J.

    2016-06-01

    Mapping of the with-in field variability of crop vigor has a long tradition with a success rate ranging from medium to high depending on the local conditions of the study. Information about the development of agronomical relevant crop parameters, such as above-ground biomass and crop nutritional status, provides high reliability for yield estimation and recommendation for variable rate application of fertilizers. The aim of this study was to utilize unmanned and satellite multispectral imaging for estimation of basic crop parameters during the growing season. The experimental part of work was carried out in 2014 at the winter wheat field with an area of 69 ha located in the South Moravia region of the Czech Republic. An UAV imaging was done in April 2014 using Sensefly eBee, which was equipped by visible and near infrared (red edge) multispectral cameras. For ground truth calibration the spectral signatures were measured on 20 sites using portable spectroradiometer ASD Handheld 2 and simultaneously plant samples were taken at BBCH 32 (April 2014) and BBCH 59 (Mai 2014) for estimation of above-ground biomass and nitrogen content. The UAV survey was later extended by selected cloud-free Landsat 8 OLI satellite imagery, downloaded from USGS web application Earth Explorer. After standard pre-processing procedures, a set of vegetation indices was calculated from remotely and ground sensed data. As the next step, a correlation analysis was computed among crop vigor parameters and vegetation indices. Both, amount of above-ground biomass and nitrogen content were highly correlated (r > 0.85) with ground spectrometric measurement by ASD Handheld 2 in BBCH 32, especially for narrow band vegetation indices (e.g. Red Edge Inflection Point). UAV and Landsat broadband vegetation indices varied in range of r = 0.5 - 0.7, highest values of the correlation coefficients were obtained for crop biomass by using GNDVI. In all cases results from BBCH 59 vegetation stage showed lower

  15. Methodology for combining optical and microwave remote sensing in agricultural crop monitoring.

    OpenAIRE

    Leeuwen, van

    1996-01-01

    Accurate and up-to-date information on agricultural production is a vital component in running present market economies. In Europe considerable differences between c es in their agricultural production have led to a complex system of rules and subsidies which all rely on a certain level of accuracy regarding agricultural statistics (such as acreage and yield). At national level and regional level, such statistics have been collected so far by using conventional methods, which are mostly based...

  16. Support for Agricultural Restructuring Project : The Financial and Economic Competitiveness of Rice and Selected Feed Crops in Northern and Southern Vietnam

    OpenAIRE

    World Bank

    2013-01-01

    One area of weakness in current agricultural policy work in Vietnam is the lack of a clear understanding of both the private profitability of farmers for different crop activities and the social profitability of such activities. Agricultural performance is thus gauged in physical terms (i.e. yields and the volume of aggregate output) rather than in financial or economic terms. This has ham...

  17. ELEMENTS IN MAJOR RAW AGRICULTURAL CROPS IN THE UNITED STATES. 1. CADMIUM AND LEAD IN LETTUCE, PEANUTS, SOYBEANS, SWEET CORN, AND WHEAT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Six raw agricultural crops (lettuce, peanuts, potatoes, soybeans, sweet corn and wheat were collected from major U.S. growing areas uncontaminated by human activities other than normal agricultural practices and analyzed for Cd and Pb by using differential pulse anodic stripping ...

  18. Conservation agriculture and tillage effects on soil organic matter and residual moisture content in selected upland crop production systems in the Philippines

    OpenAIRE

    Ella, Victor B.; Manuel R. Reyes; Padre, R.; Mercado, Agustin R., Jr.

    2014-01-01

    This presentation describes a study to analyze the influence of conservation agriculture and tillage on soil organic matter and residual moisture content in selected upland crop production systems in the Philippines LTRA-12 (Conservation agriculture for food security in Cambodia and the Philippines)

  19. Methodology for combining optical and microwave remote sensing in agricultural crop monitoring.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, van H.J.C.

    1996-01-01

    Accurate and up-to-date information on agricultural production is a vital component in running present market economies. In Europe considerable differences between c es in their agricultural production have led to a complex system of rules and subsidies which all rely on a certain level of accuracy

  20. Recognising Differences in Weed and Crop Species Recognition Skills of Agriculture Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burrows, Geoffrey E.

    2012-01-01

    Students in an agricultural science degree were surveyed to assess their ability to recognise plants of agricultural importance. The survey consisted of high quality images of 25 species. Students were surveyed at the start of their studies in first year, and at various times during their second year of studies. At the start of their studies…

  1. Assessment of agricultural return flows under changing climate and crop water management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Water rights, policy and emergent water markets in the semi-arid regions of the western USA, and worldwide, call for improved estimates of agricultural water budgets. Agricultural water is seen as a major potential water supply with high commodity value as municipalities seek water security under g...

  2. Irrigation water demand of selected agricultural crops in Germany between 1902 and 2010.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drastig, Katrin; Prochnow, Annette; Libra, Judy; Koch, Hagen; Rolinski, Susanne

    2016-11-01

    Irrigation water demand (IWD) is increasing worldwide, including in regions such as Germany that are characterized with low precipitation levels, yet grow water-demanding crops such as sugar beets, potatoes, and vegetables. This study aimed to calculate and analyze the spatial and temporal changes in the IWD of four crops-spring barley, oat, winter wheat, and potato-between 1902 and 2010 in Germany by using the modeling software AgroHyd Farmmodel. Climatic conditions in Germany continued to change over the investigation period, with an increase in temperature of 0.01K/yr and an increase in precipitation of 1mm/yr. Nevertheless, no significant increasing or decreasing trend in IWD was noted in the analysis. The IWD for the investigated crops in the area of the current "Federal Republic of Germany" over the 109years was 112mm/yr, varying between 100 and 127mm/yr. Changes in cropping pattern and cultivated area over the last century caused large differences in the IWD calculated for each administrative district. The mean annual IWD of over the study period (which was divided into 4 parts) varied between 13,455Mm(3)/yr in the earliest period (1902-1919) and 4717Mm(3)/yr in the latest period (1990-2010). Policy and management measures to adapt to climate change are currently being debated in Germany. The presented results suggest that the effects of the choice of crops (in this case, changes in cropping pattern in the German nation states) had a stronger influence on regional water resources than those of climate variability. Thus, the influence of climate change on water resources is relativized which brings an important input into the debate. PMID:27395071

  3. Preparatory steps for a robust dynamic model for organically bound tritium dynamics in agricultural crops

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Melintescu, A.; Galeriu, D. [' Horia Hulubei' National Institute for Physics and Nuclear Engineering, Bucharest-Magurele (Romania); Diabate, S.; Strack, S. [Institute of Toxicology and Genetics, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology - KIT, Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen (Germany)

    2015-03-15

    The processes involved in tritium transfer in crops are complex and regulated by many feedback mechanisms. A full mechanistic model is difficult to develop due to the complexity of the processes involved in tritium transfer and environmental conditions. First, a review of existing models (ORYZA2000, CROPTRIT and WOFOST) presenting their features and limits, is made. Secondly, the preparatory steps for a robust model are discussed, considering the role of dry matter and photosynthesis contribution to the OBT (Organically Bound Tritium) dynamics in crops.

  4. Preparatory steps for a robust dynamic model for organically bound tritium dynamics in agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The processes involved in tritium transfer in crops are complex and regulated by many feedback mechanisms. A full mechanistic model is difficult to develop due to the complexity of the processes involved in tritium transfer and environmental conditions. First, a review of existing models (ORYZA2000, CROPTRIT and WOFOST) presenting their features and limits, is made. Secondly, the preparatory steps for a robust model are discussed, considering the role of dry matter and photosynthesis contribution to the OBT (Organically Bound Tritium) dynamics in crops

  5. Liming in Agricultural Production Models with and Without the Adoption of Crop-Livestock Integration

    OpenAIRE

    Francisco Carlos Mainardes da Silva; Luís Guilherme Sachs; Inês Cristina Batista Fonseca and; João Tavares Filho

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Perennial forage crops used in crop-livestock integration (CLI) are able to accumulate large amounts of straw on the soil surface in no-tillage system (NTS). In addition, they can potentially produce large amounts of soluble organic compounds that help improving the efficiency of liming in the subsurface, which favors root growth, thus reducing the risks of loss in yield during dry spells and the harmful effects of “overliming”. The aim of this study was to test the effects of liming...

  6. Assessment of impacts of agricultural and climate change scenarios on watershed water quantity and quality, and crop production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teshager, Awoke D.; Gassman, Philip W.; Schoof, Justin T.; Secchi, Silvia

    2016-08-01

    Modeling impacts of agricultural scenarios and climate change on surface water quantity and quality provides useful information for planning effective water, environmental and land use policies. Despite the significant impacts of agriculture on water quantity and quality, limited literature exists that describes the combined impacts of agricultural land use change and climate change on future bioenergy crop yields and watershed hydrology. In this study, the soil and water assessment tool (SWAT) eco-hydrological model was used to model the combined impacts of five agricultural land use change scenarios and three downscaled climate pathways (representative concentration pathways, RCPs) that were created from an ensemble of eight atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs). These scenarios were implemented in a well-calibrated SWAT model for the intensively farmed and tiled Raccoon River watershed (RRW) located in western Iowa. The scenarios were executed for the historical baseline, early century, mid-century and late century periods. The results indicate that historical and more corn intensive agricultural scenarios with higher CO2 emissions consistently result in more water in the streams and greater water quality problems, especially late in the 21st century. Planting more switchgrass, on the other hand, results in less water in the streams and water quality improvements relative to the baseline. For all given agricultural landscapes simulated, all flow, sediment and nutrient outputs increase from early-to-late century periods for the RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 climate scenarios. We also find that corn and switchgrass yields are negatively impacted under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios in the mid- and late 21st century.

  7. Understanding the potential impact of transgenic crops in traditional agriculture: maize farmers' perspectives in Cuba, Guatemala and Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soleri, Daniela; Cleveland, David A; Aragón, Flavio; Fuentes, Mario R; Ríos, Humberto; Sweeney, Stuart H

    2005-01-01

    Genetically engineered transgenic crop varieties (TGVs) have spread rapidly in the last 10 years, increasingly to traditionally-based agricultural systems (TBAS) of the Third World both as seed and food. Proponents claim they are key to reducing hunger and negative environmental impacts of agriculture. Opponents claim they will have the opposite effect. The risk management process (RMP) is the primary way in which TGVs are regulated in the US (and many other industrial countries), and proponents claim that the findings of that process in the US and its regulatory consequences should be extended to TBAS. However, TBAS differ in important ways from industrial agriculture, so TGVs could have different effects in TBAS, and farmers there may evaluate risks and benefits differently. To evaluate some potential impacts of TGVs in TBAS we used the RMP as a framework for the case of Bt maize in Mesoamerica and Cuba. We interviewed 334 farmers in Cuba, Guatemala and Mexico about farming practices, evaluations of potential harm via hypothetical scenarios, and ranking of maize types. Results suggest high potential for transgene flow via seed, grain and pollen; differences in effects of this exposure in TBAS compared with industrial agriculture; farmers see some potential consequences as harmful. Perceptions of harm differ among farmers in ways determined by their farming systems, and are different from those commonly assumed in industrial systems. An RMP including participation of farmers and characteristics of TBAS critical for their functioning is necessary to ensure that investments in agricultural technologies will improve, not compromise these agricultural systems. PMID:16634221

  8. Impact of tillage on CO2 and N2O efflux in an agricultural crop

    OpenAIRE

    Lognoul, Margaux; Theodorakopoulos, Nicolas; Hiel, Marie-Pierre; Heinesch, Bernard; Bodson, Bernard; Aubinet, Marc

    2016-01-01

    CO2 and N2O fluxes exchanged by a maize crop were measured from June to Octboer 2015 using a homemade automated system of dynamic closed chambers. We studied the impact of tillage (reduced and conventional) on greenhouse gas emissions and nitrous oxide flux dynamics.

  9. Not all GMOs are crop plants: non-plant GMO applications in agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    In the time since the tools of modern biotechnology have become available, the most commonly applied and often discussed genetically modified organisms are genetically modified crop plants, although genetic engineering is also being used successfully in organisms other than plants, including bacteri...

  10. The soil moisture regimes beneath forest and an agricultural crop in southern India--Measurement and modelling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The environmental effects of plantations of fast growing tree species has been a subject of some controversy in recent years. Extensive soil moisture measurements were made at three sites in Karnataka, southern India. At each site measurements were made beneath a number of vegetation types. These included fast growing tree species (Eucalyptus, Casuarina and Leucaena), degraded natural forest and an agricultural crop (ragi). The measurements indicate that beneath mature forest the available soil water is exhausted towards the end of the dry season, usually by March. The soil only becomes completely wetted if the subsequent monsoon has above average rainfall; during the weak monsoon of 1989 the soil remained approximately 150 mm below field capacity. After the monsoon (and during breaks in the monsoon) soil moisture depletion is between three and five mm per day. This rate decreases as the soil drys out. All the mature forest types show a similar soil water regime. This contrasts strongly with that of the agricultural crop, which shows much smaller changes. A range of soil water accounting models was applied to these data. The most successful are those which use the Penman formulation to estimate the potential evaporation and include a two-layer soil water depletion model. The more general Penman-Monteith formulation was also tested

  11. Comparative field performance of some agricultural crops under a ca-nopy of Populus deltoides and Ulmus wallichiana

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Tariq Hussian Masoodi; Nasir Ahmad Masoodi; Sajad Ahmad Gangoo; Shah Murtaza Mushtaq; Hillal Ahmad

    2013-01-01

    The performance of maize, beans and sunflower was evalu-ated under a canopy of Populus deltoides and Ulmus wallichiana at Fac-ulty of Agriculture, Wadura. The germination, growth and yield of the three test crops were suppressed under both tree species. The reduction, however, decreased when the cultivation of test crops was continued for three years. The inhibition potential generally is in the order of P. del-toides U. wallichiana for beans. Available soil N, P and K increased under the canopy of the selected tree species. The soils under U. wallichiana were more fertile than those under P. deltoides. Chromatographic investigation of extracts showed that the soils under P. deltoides and U. wallichiana differed in their composition of phenolic acids and phenolic glycocides. Except for caffic acid, all other allelochemicals disappeared and were no longer recovered in soil samples obtained after the second or third year of cultivation. Tree-crop compatibility can be explored in greater detail for improved management of traditional agro-ecosystems in Kashmir to increase the overall productivity of the land.

  12. Probabilistic analysis of water availability for agriculture and associated crop net margins.

    OpenAIRE

    Maestro Villarroya, Teresa; Nicolosi, Vincenzo; Cancelliere, Antonino; Bielza Diaz-Caneja, María

    2013-01-01

    Rising water demands are difficult to meet in many regions of the world. In consequence, under meteorological adverse conditions, big economic losses in agriculture can take place. This paper aims to analyze the variability of water shortage in an irrigation district and the effect on farmer?s income. A probabilistic analysis of water availability for agriculture in the irrigation district is performed, through a supply-system simulation approach, considering stochastically generated series...

  13. Crop-Cattle Integrated Farming System: An Alternative of Climatic Change Mitigation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Munandar

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available An integrated farming system is one of the alternatives for climatic change mitigation. This paper reports the application of corn-cattle based integrated farming system in Agrotechno Park Center of Palembang, and discusses its impact on CO2 fixation and the reduction of methane emissions. The study was based on the data of the first 6 yr from 2003 until 2009. The CO2 fixed in the soil and plants was determined based on the content of organic C which was multiplied by the index of 3.67. The methane gas produced by Balinese cattle and its dung was observed and modified into feed rations. The results showed that soil organic C increased from 40.80 tons C/ha in the 1st yr to 66.40 tons C/ha in the 6th yr. In addition, there was organic C fixation equivalent to 93.95 tons of CO2e. Corn biomass increased from 6.67 tons/ha to 18.66 tons/ha, equivalent to an increase in the fixation of atmospheric CO2e as much as 19.80 tons CO2e/ha. The supplementation of 60%-80% grass fodder with concentrate lowered the concentration of methane gas in cattle breathing by 28.7%, from 617 ppm to 440 ppm, while the methane emissions from cattle manure decreased by 31%, from 1367 mL/head/d to 943 mL/head/d. Installing a bio digester that generates biogas served to accommodate methane gas emissions from cattle dung and used it for bioenergy. Composting reduced the formation of methane gas from cattle manure through a regular process of turning over that gives aeration and forms aerobic condition in the heap of cattle dung. Recycling produces a variety of organic products that store carbon for a longer period of time and slowed the conversion of organic C into CO2. This study showed that the diverse activities of an integrated crop-cattle farming could be an alternative solution to climatic change mitigation.

  14. Evaluation of Electronic Commerce (E-Commerce) with SWOT Analysis as an Alternative Network Marketing at Agricultural Marketing

    OpenAIRE

    Nuray Kızılaslan; Tayfur Ünal

    2015-01-01

    Compulsory competition occurring in the world trade has led the enterprises to different marketing system. Marketing problems seems to be a problem in Turkey rather than agricultural production problems. In this aspect, marketing alternatives are sought. E-commerce is a system with more opportunities in agricultural marketing. Increasing the applicability of this system in Turkey will eliminate many problems associated with marketing in agriculture. With an active use of E-commerce in agricul...

  15. Can agricultural Cultivation Methods Influence the Healthfulness of Crops for Foods?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Melballe Jensen, Maja; Jørgensen, Henry; Halekoh, Ulrich;

    2012-01-01

    . Additionally, the nutritional quality was affected by harvest year and location. However, harvest year and location rather than cultivation system affected the measured health biomarkers. In conclusion, the differences in dietary treatments composed of ingredients from different cultivation systems did not......The aim of the current study was to investigate if there are any health effects of long-term consumption of organically grown crops using a rat model. Crops were retrieved over two years from a long-term field trial at three different locations in Denmark, using three different cultivation systems...... lead to significant differences in the measured health biomarkers, except for a significant difference in plasma IgG levels....

  16. Air and agriculture. Damage by air pollution in crop cultivation and economic effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Air pollution adversely affects crop production in the Netherlands, both in qualitative and in quantitative terms. The extent to which crop yield is reduced and economic loss have been estimated for the Netherlands. Exposure to ozone accounts for the greater part of economic loss. For an average summer, with ozone at background levels, the calculated gain for producers and consumers is circa 450 million Dutch guilders (Dfl). They will experience a net loss of Dfl 587 million in a high ozone summer (ozone level is 30% higher compared to the average summer). If the concentration of sulfur dioxide decreases by 60% and the concentration of nitrogen oxides decreases by 20% as compared to the levels in 1995, producers and consumers are expected to experience a net gain of Dfl 186 million. Fluorides and other air pollutants do not constitute a large-scale problem. 3 refs

  17. Pesticide Use in U.S. Agriculture: 21 Selected Crops, 1960-2008

    OpenAIRE

    Fernandez-Cornejo, Jorge; Nehring, Richard; Osteen, Craig; Wechsler, Seth James; Martin, Andrew; Vialou, Alex

    2014-01-01

    Pesticide use has changed considerably over the past five decades. Rapid growth characterized the first 20 years, ending in 1981. The total quantity of pesticides applied to the 21 crops analyzed grew from 196 million pounds of pesticide active ingredients in 1960 to 632 million pounds in 1981. Improvements in the types and modes of action of active ingredients applied along with small annual fluctuations resulted in a slight downward trend in pesticide use to 516 million pounds in 2008. Thes...

  18. EXPLAINING THE ADOPTION AND DISADOPTION OF SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE: THE CASE OF COVER CROPS IN NORTHERN HONDURAS

    OpenAIRE

    Neill, Sean P.; Lee, David R.

    1999-01-01

    Although technology adoption has been the subject of a great deal of economic research, that focused on the economics of adoption of low-input "sustainable" systems has been much more limited and recent. This paper attempts to explain the recent decline in the use of cover crops using in maize farming in the Department of Atlantida, Honduras. In the early 1970's, farmers in the region began rotating maize with the velvetbean (mucuna ssp.), a system learned from Guatemalan immigrants. Tohe muc...

  19. Bayer CropScience model village project: Contributions to agricultural suppliers’ competitiveness and human development

    OpenAIRE

    Moczadlo, Regina; Strotmann, Harald; Volkert, Jürgen

    2014-01-01

    Bayer CropScience is carrying out a Model Village Project (MVP) in rural India as part of their supply chain management and their corporate social responsibility activities. The MVP includes actions related to future business cases and higher competitiveness as well as philanthropic activities. The preparation of future business case actions aims at creating prerequisites for win-win-situations. In the long run, these prerequisites, such as long-term business relations with suppli...

  20. Natural radioactivity, dose assessment and uranium uptake by agricultural crops at Khan Al-Zabeeb, Jordan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Al-Kharouf, Samer J. [Royal Scientific Society, Amman 11941 (Jordan); Al-Hamarneh, Ibrahim F. [Prince Abdullah Bin Ghazi Faculty of Science and IT, Al-Balqa Applied University (BAU), Salt 19117 (Jordan)], E-mail: hamarnehibrahim@yahoo.com; Dababneh, Munir [Prince Abdullah Bin Ghazi Faculty of Science and IT, Al-Balqa Applied University (BAU), Salt 19117 (Jordan)

    2008-07-15

    Khan Al-Zabeeb, an irrigated cultivated area lies above a superficial uranium deposits, is regularly used to produce vegetables and fruits consumed by the public. Both soil and plant samples collected from the study area were investigated for their natural radioactivity to determine the uranium uptake by crops and hence to estimate the effective dose equivalent to human consumption. Concentrations of {sup 238}U, {sup 235}U, {sup 232}Th, {sup 226}Ra, {sup 222}Rn, {sup 137}Cs and {sup 40}K in nine soil profiles were measured by gamma-ray spectrometry whereas watermelon and zucchini crops were analyzed for their uranium content by means of alpha spectrometry after radiochemical separation. Correlations between measured radionuclides were made and their activity ratios were determined to evaluate their geochemical behavior in the soil profiles. Calculated soil-plant transfer factors indicate that the green parts (leaves, stems and roots) of the studied crops tend to accumulate uranium about two orders of magnitude higher than the fruits. The maximum dose from ingestion of 1 kg of watermelon pulp was estimated to be 3.1 and 4.7 nSv y{sup -1} for {sup 238}U and {sup 234}U, respectively. Estimations of the annual effective dose equivalent due to external exposure showed extremely low values. Radium equivalent activity and external hazard index were seen to exceed the permissible limits of 370 Bq kg{sup -1} and 1, respectively.

  1. Natural radioactivity, dose assessment and uranium uptake by agricultural crops at Khan Al-Zabeeb, Jordan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Kharouf, Samer J; Al-Hamarneh, Ibrahim F; Dababneh, Munir

    2008-07-01

    Khan Al-Zabeeb, an irrigated cultivated area lies above a superficial uranium deposits, is regularly used to produce vegetables and fruits consumed by the public. Both soil and plant samples collected from the study area were investigated for their natural radioactivity to determine the uranium uptake by crops and hence to estimate the effective dose equivalent to human consumption. Concentrations of (238)U, (235)U, (232)Th, (226)Ra, (222)Rn, (137)Cs and (40)K in nine soil profiles were measured by gamma-ray spectrometry whereas watermelon and zucchini crops were analyzed for their uranium content by means of alpha spectrometry after radiochemical separation. Correlations between measured radionuclides were made and their activity ratios were determined to evaluate their geochemical behavior in the soil profiles. Calculated soil-plant transfer factors indicate that the green parts (leaves, stems and roots) of the studied crops tend to accumulate uranium about two orders of magnitude higher than the fruits. The maximum dose from ingestion of 1 kg of watermelon pulp was estimated to be 3.1 and 4.7 nSv y(-1) for (238)U and (234)U, respectively. Estimations of the annual effective dose equivalent due to external exposure showed extremely low values. Radium equivalent activity and external hazard index were seen to exceed the permissible limits of 370 Bq kg(-1) and 1, respectively. PMID:18359539

  2. Natural radioactivity, dose assessment and uranium uptake by agricultural crops at Khan Al-Zabeeb, Jordan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan Al-Zabeeb, an irrigated cultivated area lies above a superficial uranium deposits, is regularly used to produce vegetables and fruits consumed by the public. Both soil and plant samples collected from the study area were investigated for their natural radioactivity to determine the uranium uptake by crops and hence to estimate the effective dose equivalent to human consumption. Concentrations of 238U, 235U, 232Th, 226Ra, 222Rn, 137Cs and 40K in nine soil profiles were measured by gamma-ray spectrometry whereas watermelon and zucchini crops were analyzed for their uranium content by means of alpha spectrometry after radiochemical separation. Correlations between measured radionuclides were made and their activity ratios were determined to evaluate their geochemical behavior in the soil profiles. Calculated soil-plant transfer factors indicate that the green parts (leaves, stems and roots) of the studied crops tend to accumulate uranium about two orders of magnitude higher than the fruits. The maximum dose from ingestion of 1 kg of watermelon pulp was estimated to be 3.1 and 4.7 nSv y-1 for 238U and 234U, respectively. Estimations of the annual effective dose equivalent due to external exposure showed extremely low values. Radium equivalent activity and external hazard index were seen to exceed the permissible limits of 370 Bq kg-1 and 1, respectively

  3. Global potential to increase crop production through water management in rainfed agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This modeling study explores-spatially explicitly, for current and projected future climate, and for different management intensity levels-the potential for increasing global crop production through on-farm water management strategies: (a) reducing soil evaporation ('vapor shift') and (b) collecting runoff on cropland and using it during dry spells ('runoff harvesting'). A moderate scenario, implying both a 25% reduction in evaporation and a 25% collection of runoff, suggests that global crop production can be increased by 19%, which is comparable with the effect of current irrigation (17%). Climate change alone (three climate models, SRES A2r emissions and population, constant land use) will reduce global crop production by 9% by 2050, which could be buffered by a vapor shift level of 50% or a water harvesting level of 25%. Even if realization of the beneficial effects of rising atmospheric CO2 concentration upon plants was ensured (by fertilizer use) in tandem with the above moderate water management scenario, the water available on current cropland will not meet the requirements of a world population of 9-10 billion.

  4. Carbon stocks quantification in agricultural systems employing succession and rotation of crops in Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter, Michele K. C.; Marinho, Mara de A.; Denardin, José E.; Zullo, Jurandir, Jr.; Paz-González, Antonio

    2013-04-01

    Soil and vegetation constitute respectively the third and the fourth terrestrial reservoirs of Carbon (C) on Earth. C sequestration in these reservoirs includes the capture of the CO2 from the atmosphere by photosynthesis and its storage as organic C. Consequently, changes in land use and agricultural practices affect directly the emissions of the greenhouse gases and the C sequestration. Several studies have already demonstrated that conservation agriculture, and particularly zero tillage (ZT), has a positive effect on soil C sequestration. The Brazilian federal program ABC (Agriculture of Low Carbon Emission) was conceived to promote agricultural production with environmental protection and represents an instrument to achieve voluntary targets to mitigate emissions or NAMAS (National Appropriated Mitigation Actions). With financial resources of about US 1.0 billion until 2020 the ABC Program has a target of expand ZT in 8 million hectares of land, with reduction of 16 to 20 million of CO2eq. Our objective was to quantify the C stocks in soil, plants and litter of representative grain crops systems under ZT in Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil. Two treatments of a long term experimental essay (> 20 years) were evaluated: 1) Crop succession with wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)/soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merril); 2) Crop rotation with wheat/soybean (1st year), vetch (Vicia sativa L.)/soybean (2nd year), and white oat (Avena sativa L.)/sorghum (Sorghum bicolor L.) (3rd year). C quantification in plants and in litter was performed using the direct method of biomass quantification. The soil type evaluated was a Humic Rhodic Hapludox, and C quantification was executed employing the method referred by "C mass by unit area". Results showed that soybean plants under crop succession presented greater C stock (4.31MgC ha-1) comparing with soybean plants cultivated under crop rotation (3.59 MgC ha-1). For wheat, however, greater C stock was quantified in plants under rotation

  5. Using satellite remote sensing and hydrologic modeling to improve understanding of crop management and agricultural water use at regional to global scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmon, Jessica Meghan

    Croplands are essential to human welfare. In the coming decades, croplands will experience substantial stress from climate change, population growth, changing diets, urban expansion, and increased demand for biofuels. Food security in many parts of the world therefore requires informed crop management and adaptation strategies. In this dissertation, I explore two key dimensions of crop management with significant potential to improve adaptation pathways: irrigation and crop calendars. Irrigation, which is widely used to boost crop yields, is a key strategy for adapting to changes in drought frequency and duration. However, irrigation competes with household, industrial, and environmental needs for freshwater resources. Accurate information regarding irrigation patterns is therefore required to develop strategies that reduce unsustainable water use. To address this need, I fused information from remote sensing, climate datasets, and crop inventories to develop a new global database of rain-fed, irrigated, and paddy croplands. This database describes global agricultural water management with good realism and at higher spatial resolution than existing maps. Crop calendar management helps farmers to limit crop damage from heat and moisture stress. However, global crop calendar information currently lacks spatial and temporal detail. In the second part of my dissertation I used remote sensing to characterize global cropping patterns annually, from 2001-2010, at 0.08 degree spatial resolution. Comparison of this new dataset with existing sources of crop calendar data indicates that remote sensing is able to correct substantial deficiencies in available data sources. More importantly, the database provides previously unavailable information related to year-to-year variability in cropping patterns. Asia, home to roughly one half of the Earth's population, is expected to experience significant food insecurity in coming decades. In the final part of my dissertation, I used a

  6. Planning and costing agriculture's adaptation to climate change in the salinity-prone cropping system of Bangladesh

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mainuddin, Khandaker; Rahman, Aminur; Islam, Nazria; Quasem, Saad

    2011-10-15

    This study aims to investigate adaptation requirements and their cost implications in the context of coastal agriculture in Bangladesh. Work shows that the various stakeholders in Bangladesh are aware of climate change and its adverse impacts on agricultural production, and are therefore currently trying to embed adaptation into policy and long-term planning documents. The study also indicates that extension workers are active in promoting technological advances for adaptive practices. Research agencies in Bangladesh are also up to date and in the process of developing methods and varieties for climate change adaptation. Many of the existing adaptive varieties and farming techniques were developed by local research agencies. The claims of institutional stakeholders have been supported by local farmers, who already practise adaptation measures through using saline-resistant crops, better farming techniques, and different forms of irrigation. Farmers and stakeholders unanimously agree on the urgent need to excavate canals to resist salinity. The cost of using adaptive varieties is similar to that of traditional rice varieties, which makes the use of adaptive varieties an imperative for the future. Another point emphasised by the stakeholders and farmers is the need for training. In order to achieve benchmarks for adaptation in the coastal zone, capacity building for agricultural staff and farmers has to be simultaneously improved. Furthermore, additional funding needs to be allocated to the relevant stakeholder institutions so that adaptation measures can be effectively implemented and scaled up further.

  7. You can’t eat your mulch and have it too : cropping system design and tradeoffs around biomass use for Conservation Agriculture in Cameroon and Madagascar

    OpenAIRE

    Naudin, K.

    2012-01-01

    Conservation agriculture is defined by three main principles: minimum soil   disturbance, permanent soil cover and crop rotations. CA is promoted as a   promising technology for Africa, but to date, only a small area under CA fully   complies with the above three principles. CA has both short and long term   effects on crop productivity and sustainability through the modification of various   agroecological functions. These functions are relat...

  8. Caesium-137 root uptake by agricultural and wild crops in post-Chernobyl landscape: the possibilities for phytoremediation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paramonova, Tatiana; Shamshurina, Eugenia; Komissarova, Olga; Belyaev, Vladimir

    2015-04-01

    In spite of long term period after Chernobyl fallout (≈25 years after the accident) the level of Cs-137 in soils of contaminated landscapes remains several times more than radiation safety standard (= 37 kBq/m2). In particular, within the area of Plavsk radioactive hot spot (Tula region, Russia) current Cs-137 activities in soil are 460-500 Bq/kg (170-200 kBq/m2) on watershed, 580-680 Bq/kg (200-220 kBq/m2) in arable lower parts of slopes and 620-710 Bq/kg (210-280 kBq/m2) in untilled foots of slopes and river floodplains. To estimate the process of Cs-137 root uptake and incorporation of the radionuclide in plant tissues 6 agricultural crops of typical field rotation (spring barley, maize, summer rape, galega, potatoes, amaranth) as well as natural ecosystems of dry and wet meadows were selected for the detailed study. Total bioproductivity of agricultural crops varies between 1.7-3.9 kg/m2, natural grass ecosystems - 1.9-2.2 g/m2, and is obviously unaffected by radioactive land contamination. At the same time Cs-137 activity in total biomass slightly increases with Cs-137 activity in soil (correlation coefficient r=0.45) and with total biomass (correlation coefficient r=0.51) in the row: rape (5 Bq/kg) phytoremediation purposes, as 86-97% of the radionuclide inventory is associated with roots and remains in soil after cutting of aboveground parts. On the other hand, galega and amaranth could be considered as agricultural crops potentially being used for phytoremediation, since 87-93% of Cs-137 inventory is located in shoots. Potatoes having rather high aboveground biomass and easily removed from soil underground part could be also used for phytoremediation. However, it should be clearly understood that in total Cs-137 inventory in "soil-plant" system the annual amount of the radionuclide's consumption (that may be alienated when harvesting) is less than 0.01%, while the rate of Cs-137 radioactive decay is estimated as about 2% per year. Study was conducted with

  9. Alternative U.S. biofuel mandates and global GHG emissions: The role of land use change, crop management and yield growth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We investigate the impacts of the U.S. renewable fuel standard (RFS2) and several alternative biofuel policy designs on global GHG emissions from land use change and agriculture over the 2010–2030 horizon. Analysis of the scenarios relies on GLOBIOM, a global, multi-sectoral economic model based on a detailed representation of land use. Our results reveal that RFS2 would substantially increase the portion of agricultural land needed for biofuel feedstock production. U.S. exports of most agricultural products would decrease as long as the biofuel target would increase leading to higher land conversion and nitrogen use globally. In fact, higher levels of the mandate mean lower net emissions within the U.S. but when the emissions from the rest of the world are considered, the US biofuel policy results in almost no change on GHG emissions for the RFS2 level and higher global GHG emissions for higher levels of the mandate or higher share of conventional corn-ethanol in the mandate. Finally, we show that if the projected crop productivity would be lower globally, the imbalance between domestic U.S. GHG savings and additional GHG emissions in the rest of the world would increase, thus deteriorating the net global impact of U.S. biofuel policies. - Highlights: ► We model the impact of the U.S. renewable fuel standard (RFS2). ► RFS2 would require more agricultural land and nitrogen globally. ► Increasing the mandates reduce GHG emissions within the U.S. ► Increasing the mandates increase GHG emissions in the rest of the world. ► Total GHG emissions increase with higher levels of mandate; higher share of corn-ethanol; lower productivity growth

  10. Benchmarking the Fertilizer and Crop Protectant Application Activities of Agricultural Cooperatives

    OpenAIRE

    Ouedraogo, Frederic; Phillip, Kenkel

    2015-01-01

    This research aims to benchmark agricultural supply cooperatives regarding their fertilizer application services. Cooperative fertilizer application departments are essentially an extension of member farm operations. Because farm supply cooperatives return profits to their user members, the efficiency of the application department directly impacts farm profitability. Therefore, a benchmark analysis is needed to compare performances among competitive cooperatives, identify the best practices, ...

  11. Low Energy Technology. A Unit of Instruction in Florida Agriculture. Crop Protection with Integrated Pest Management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Florida Univ., Gainesville. Inst. of Food and Agricultural Sciences.

    This unit of instruction on integrated pest management was designed for use by agribusiness and natural resources teachers in Florida high schools and by agricultural extension agents as they work with adults and students. It is one of a series of 11 instructional units (see note) written to help teachers and agents to educate their students and…

  12. Assessments of carbon and water cycling in multiple agricultural ecosystems in the Inland Pacific Northwest using eddy covariance flux measurements and integrated basin-crop model simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chi, J.; Maureira, F.; Waldo, S.; O'Keeffe, P.; Pressley, S. N.; Stockle, C. O.; Lamb, B. K.

    2014-12-01

    Local meteorology, crop management practices and site characteristics have important impacts on carbon and water cycling in agricultural ecosystems. This study focuses on carbon and water fluxes measured using eddy covariance (EC) methods and crop simulation models in the Inland Pacific Northwest (IPNW), in association with the Regional Approaches to Climate Change (REACCH) program. The agricultural ecosystem is currently challenged by higher pressure on water resources as a consequence of population growth and increasing exposure to impacts associated with different types of crop managements. In addition, future climate projections for this region show a likely increase in temperature and significant reductions in precipitation that will affect carbon and water dynamics. This new scenario requires an understanding of crop management by assessing efficient ways to face the impacts of climate change at the micrometeorological level, especially in regards to carbon and water flow. We focus on three different crop management sites. One site (LIND) under crop-fallow is situated in a low-rainfall area. The other two sites, one no-till site (CAF-NT) and one conventional tillage site (CAF-CT), are located in an area of high-rainfall with continuous cropping. In this study, we used CropSyst micro-basin model to simulate the responses in carbon and water budgets at each site. Based on the EC processed results for net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2, the CAF-NT site was a carbon sink during 2013 when spring garbanzo was planted; while the paired CAF-CT site, under similar crop rotation and meteorological conditions, was a carbon source during the same period. The LIND site was also a carbon sink where winter wheat was growing during 2013. Model results for CAF-NT showed good agreement with the EC carbon and water flux measurements during 2013. Through comparisons between measurements and modeling results, both short and long term processes that influence carbon and water

  13. Lead and Cadmium Concentration in Agricultural Crops (Lettuce, Cabbage, Beetroot, and Onion of Isfahan Province, Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reza Mohajer

    2014-07-01

    Conclusion: The findings of this study indicated that although most of the sampling plants were contaminated with lead and cadmium, the estimated daily intake of each metal (EDI showed that except lead in lettuce, other crops have EDI below the provisional tolerable daily intake (PTDI recommended by the Institute of Standards and Industrial Research of Iran. In order to better management, preventing pollution and also finding the origin of elements, analyzing heavy metals content in soil, water, and dust of this region is recommended.

  14. Identification and area estimation of agricultural crops by computer classification of Landsat MSS data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, M. E.; Cipra, J. E.; Anuta, P. E.; Etheridge, J. B.

    1979-01-01

    Landsat Multispectral Scanner (MSS) data covering a three-county area in northern Illinois were classified using computer-aided techniques as corn, soybeans, or 'other.' Recognition of test fields was 80% accurate. County estimates of the area of corn and soybeans agreed closely with those made by the USDA. Results of the use of a priori information in classification, techniques to produce unbiased area estimates, and the use of temporal and spatial features for classification are discussed. The extendability, variability, and size of training sets, wavelength band selection, and spectral characteristics of crops were also investigated.

  15. Comparison of soil respiration in typical conventional and new alternative cereal cropping systems on the North China plain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Bing; Ju, Xiaotang; Su, Fang; Gao, Fengbin; Cao, Qingsen; Oenema, Oene; Christie, Peter; Chen, Xinping; Zhang, Fusuo

    2013-01-01

    We monitored soil respiration (Rs), soil temperature (T) and volumetric water content (VWC%) over four years in one typical conventional and four alternative cropping systems to understand Rs in different cropping systems with their respective management practices and environmental conditions. The control was conventional double-cropping system (winter wheat and summer maize in one year--Con.W/M). Four alternative cropping systems were designed with optimum water and N management, i.e. optimized winter wheat and summer maize (Opt.W/M), three harvests every two years (first year, winter wheat and summer maize or soybean; second year, fallow then spring maize--W/M-M and W/S-M), and single spring maize per year (M). Our results show that Rs responded mainly to the seasonal variation in T but was also greatly affected by straw return, root growth and soil moisture changes under different cropping systems. The mean seasonal CO2 emissions in Con.W/M were 16.8 and 15.1 Mg CO2 ha(-1) for summer maize and winter wheat, respectively, without straw return. They increased significantly by 26 and 35% in Opt.W/M, respectively, with straw return. Under the new alternative cropping systems with straw return, W/M-M showed similar Rs to Opt.W/M, but total CO2 emissions of W/S-M decreased sharply relative to Opt.W/M when soybean was planted to replace summer maize. Total CO2 emissions expressed as the complete rotation cycles of W/S-M, Con.W/M and M treatments were not significantly different. Seasonal CO2 emissions were significantly correlated with the sum of carbon inputs of straw return from the previous season and the aboveground biomass in the current season, which explained 60% of seasonal CO2 emissions. T and VWC% explained up to 65% of Rs using the exponential-power and double exponential models, and the impacts of tillage and straw return must therefore be considered for accurate modeling of Rs in this geographical region. PMID:24278340

  16. Comparison of soil respiration in typical conventional and new alternative cereal cropping systems on the North China plain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bing Gao

    Full Text Available We monitored soil respiration (Rs, soil temperature (T and volumetric water content (VWC% over four years in one typical conventional and four alternative cropping systems to understand Rs in different cropping systems with their respective management practices and environmental conditions. The control was conventional double-cropping system (winter wheat and summer maize in one year--Con.W/M. Four alternative cropping systems were designed with optimum water and N management, i.e. optimized winter wheat and summer maize (Opt.W/M, three harvests every two years (first year, winter wheat and summer maize or soybean; second year, fallow then spring maize--W/M-M and W/S-M, and single spring maize per year (M. Our results show that Rs responded mainly to the seasonal variation in T but was also greatly affected by straw return, root growth and soil moisture changes under different cropping systems. The mean seasonal CO2 emissions in Con.W/M were 16.8 and 15.1 Mg CO2 ha(-1 for summer maize and winter wheat, respectively, without straw return. They increased significantly by 26 and 35% in Opt.W/M, respectively, with straw return. Under the new alternative cropping systems with straw return, W/M-M showed similar Rs to Opt.W/M, but total CO2 emissions of W/S-M decreased sharply relative to Opt.W/M when soybean was planted to replace summer maize. Total CO2 emissions expressed as the complete rotation cycles of W/S-M, Con.W/M and M treatments were not significantly different. Seasonal CO2 emissions were significantly correlated with the sum of carbon inputs of straw return from the previous season and the aboveground biomass in the current season, which explained 60% of seasonal CO2 emissions. T and VWC% explained up to 65% of Rs using the exponential-power and double exponential models, and the impacts of tillage and straw return must therefore be considered for accurate modeling of Rs in this geographical region.

  17. Vertical distribution of agriculture crop residue burning aerosol observed by space-borne lidar CALIOP - A case study over the Indo-Gangetic Basin (IGB)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, A. K.; Shibata, T.

    2011-12-01

    Agriculture crop residue burning is one of the important sources of trace gas emissions and aerosol loading over the Indo-Gangetic Basin (IGB). It is also one of the main causes for dense atmospheric brown clouds (ABCs) formation over South Asian region. Present study deals with spatial and vertical variability of aerosol optical and microphysical properties during the crop residue burning season (October and November) over the IGB. MODIS (MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) fire location data and MODIS AOD data confirms the crop residue burning activities over irrigated cropland of the IGB during October and November, 2009. Large values (> 0.7) of MODIS AOD (aerosol optical depth) and CALIOP (Cloud-Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization) backscatter (>0.006 km-1 sr-1 below 1.0 km altitude) are suggesting enhanced atmospheric pollution associated with agriculture crop residue burning. The increase in tropospheric columnar NO2 and surface CO concentration during October and November also emphasized the significant contribution of crop residue burning activities in enhanced anthropogenic pollution over the IGB. Vertical distribution of backscatter coefficients showed trapping of biomass (crop residues) burning aerosol within boundary layer. Spatial variation of aerosol backscatter and AOD showed large value above north-west part of IGB, major area of crop residue burning activities. The results of this study will be very useful in quantification of optical properties of atmospheric brown clouds and its effect on climate.

  18. Agricultural production and groundwater depletion under climate variability in India - Results from a regional scale crop modeling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegfried, T. U.; Sobolowski, S.; Fishman, R.; Vasquez, V.; Raj, P.; Narula, K. K.; Modi, V.; Lall, U.

    2009-12-01

    In India, recent declines in national food security may point to systemic deficiencies of agricultural production. Over the past decade and in the face of declining public investments in irrigation projects, the growth of production has increasingly become reliant on the allocation of large volumes of groundwater in an unsustainable manner. As a result, shallow as well as deep fossil groundwater resources are increasingly depleted and the buffer that mitigates negative impacts on production in case of Monsoonal dry-spells / drought conditions is lost. In the face of future climate and food supply uncertainty, it is vital that the connections between climate variability, unsustainable irrigation practices and their impacts on regional scale agricultural production be quantified and better understood. In our analysis, we focus on rice production in the Telengana region in Andhra Pradesh, which is characterized by a semi-arid tropical climate that is driven by the bimodal seasonality of the south-western monsoon. Traditionally, agricultural production of rice was constrained by precipitation variations during the wet season (Kharif). However, the advent of inexpensive pump technology in the 1970's, coupled with governmentally subsidized electricity has allowed year-round rice production. Thus, the Monsoon rains must not only drive wet season production but must also sufficiently recharge groundwater in order to support dry season production. Observed Production time series are characterized by non-stationarity and heteroscedasticity. Using a subset of eight districts, a non-linear Gaussian Process regression model is developed and yearly crop production is modeled at the district level over 48 years. We show that interannual climate variations, in the form of the monsoon rains, play a significant role in determining the area of land set aside for dry season planting and thus affect total yearly production. The results suggest that a non-linear Bayesian regression

  19. Genetic engineering in agriculture and corporate engineering in public debate: risk, public relations, and public debate over genetically modified crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, Rajeev; Torres, Robert J; Rosset, Peter

    2005-01-01

    Corporations have long influenced environmental and occupational health in agriculture, doing a great deal of damage, making substantial profits, and shaping public debate to make it appear that environmental misfortunes are accidents of an otherwise well-functioning system, rather than systemic. The debate over the genetically modified (GM) crops is an example. The largest producer of commercial GM seeds, Monsanto, exemplifies the industry's strategies: the invocation of poor people as beneficiaries, characterization of opposition as technophobic or anti-progress, and portrayal of their products as environmentally beneficial in the absence of or despite the evidence. This strategy is endemic to contemporary market capitalism, with its incentives to companies to externalize health and environmental costs to increase profits. PMID:16350477

  20. Crop residue stabilization and application to agricultural and degraded soils: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medina, Jorge; Monreal, Carlos; Barea, José Miguel; Arriagada, César; Borie, Fernando; Cornejo, Pablo

    2015-08-01

    Agricultural activities produce vast amounts of organic residues including straw, unmarketable or culled fruit and vegetables, post-harvest or post-processing wastes, clippings and residuals from forestry or pruning operations, and animal manure. Improper disposal of these materials may produce undesirable environmental (e.g. odors or insect refuges) and health impacts. On the other hand, agricultural residues are of interest to various industries and sectors of the economy due to their energy content (i.e., for combustion), their potential use as feedstock to produce biofuels and/or fine chemicals, or as a soil amendments for polluted or degraded soils when composted. Our objective is review new biotechnologies that could be used to manage these residues for land application and remediation of contaminated and eroded soils. Bibliographic information is complemented through a comprehensive review of the physico-chemical fundamental mechanisms involved in the transformation and stabilization of organic matter by biotic and abiotic soil components. PMID:25936555

  1. Analyzing the efficiency of agricultural crop production by using mathematical models

    OpenAIRE

    MARIANA NIKOLLA; LUMTURI SENA; VALBONA KOLANECI; JONIDA BOU DIB (LEKOCAJ); OLTA SOKOLI

    2014-01-01

    Pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) is one of the main vegetables cultivated in our country. It covers about 3,000 hectares and occupies an important place in the structure of cultivation. Its cultivation in large areas is done because it firstly is used widely in our traditional cuisine and secondly, provides high incomes per area. The yield per area depends from the agricultural technology implemented, the type of culture and the cultivated areas. In our climate conditions, the pepper is much favor...

  2. Is the possibility of replacing seed dressings containing neonicotinoids with other means of protection viable in major Polish agricultural crops?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matyjaszczyk Ewa

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Following the limitations regarding the use of the neonicotinoids: clothianidin, thiamethoxam and imidacloprid there are no currently available insecticide seed dressings for oilseed rape in Poland. For maize here is only one seed dressing containing methiocarb available with a very narrow registered scope of use. The impact of limitations on protection possibilities of other major Polish agricultural crops is either negligible or non-existent. In consequence a group of economically important insect pests of maize [dungbeetles (Melolonthidae; click beetles (Elateridae; noctuid moths (Agrotinae] and oilseed rape [leaf miners (Agromyzidae, turnip sawfly (Athalia colibri Christ., cabbage weevils (Curculionidae, cabbage root fly (Hylemyia brassicae Bche., diamond-back moth (Plutella maculipennis Curt.] is left without any legal possibility of chemical control. For the other important pests of the early growth stage of oilseed rape development, there are only pyrethroids available together with one product containing chloropiryfos that can be applied once per vegetation season. Since both maize and oilseed rape are grown in Poland on the area of approximately 1 million ha (each crop, this situation raises concerns about production possibilities as well as development of pest resistance.

  3. Organic farming and cover crops as an alternative to mineral fertilizers to improve soil physical properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez de Cima, Diego; Luik, Anne; Reintam, Endla

    2015-10-01

    For testing how cover crops and different fertilization managements affect the soil physical properties in a plough based tillage system, a five-year crop rotation experiment (field pea, white potato, common barley undersown with red clover, red clover, and winter wheat) was set. The rotation was managed under four different farming systems: two conventional: with and without mineral fertilizers and two organic, both with winter cover crops (later ploughed and used as green manure) and one where cattle manure was added yearly. The measurements conducted were penetration resistance, soil water content, porosity, water permeability, and organic carbon. Yearly variations were linked to the number of tillage operations, and a cumulative effect of soil organic carbon in the soil as a result of the different fertilization amendments, organic or mineral. All the systems showed similar tendencies along the three years of study and differences were only found between the control and the other systems. Mineral fertilizers enhanced the overall physical soil conditions due to the higher yield in the system. In the organic systems, cover crops and cattle manure did not have a significant effect on soil physical properties in comparison with the conventional ones, which were kept bare during the winter period. The extra organic matter boosted the positive effect of crop rotation, but the higher number of tillage operations in both organic systems counteracted this effect to a greater or lesser extent.

  4. Alternatives to Crop Insurance for Mitigating Hydrologic Risk in the Upper Mississippi River Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, J. M.; Griffis, T. J.; Gorski, G.; Wood, J. D.

    2015-12-01

    Corn and soybean production in the Upper Mississippi River Basin can be limited by either excess or shortage of water, often in the same year within the same watershed. Most producers indemnify themselves against these hazards through the Federal crop insurance program, which is heavily subsidized, thus discouraging expenditures on other forms of risk mitigation. The cost is not trivial, amounting to more than 60 billion USD over the past 15 years. Examination of long-term precipitation and streamflow records at the 8-digit scale suggests that inter-annual hydrologic variability in the region is increasing, particularly in an area stretching from NW IL through much of IA and southern MN. Analysis of crop insurance statistics shows that these same watersheds exhibit the highest frequency of coincident claims for yield losses to both excess water and drought within the same year. An emphasis on development of water management strategies to increase landscape storage and subsequent reuse through supplemental irrigation in this region could reduce the cost of the crop insurance program and stabilize yield. However, we also note that analysis of yield data from USDA-NASS shows that interannual yield variability at the watershed scale is much more muted than the indemnity data suggest, indicating that adverse selection is probably a factor in the crop insurance marketplace. Consequently, we propose that hydrologic mitigation practices may be most cost-effective if they are carefully targeted, using topographic, soil, and meteorological data, in combination with more site-specificity in crop insurance data.

  5. Modeling Biochemical Impacts of Alternative Management Practices for a Row-Crop Field in Iowa

    Science.gov (United States)

    The management of contemporary agriculture is rapidly shifting from single-goal to multi-goal strategies. The bottleneck of implementing the strategies is the capacity of predicting the simultaneous impacts of change in management practices on agricultural production, soil, and water resources and e...

  6. Structure, Composition and Diversity of Horticulture Trees and Agricultural Crops Productivity under Traditional Agri-Horticulture System in Mid Hill Situation of Garhwal Himalaya, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arvind Bijalwan

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Productivity of agricultural crops under traditional agri-hortculture system alongwith structure, composition and diversity of fruit trees and shrub species in mid hill situation of Garhwal Himalaya, India between 1000 to 2000 m asl during summer and winter seasons on northern and southern aspect were studied. The tree density, composition and diversity in the system varied depending upon aspect, landholding and requirements of the farmers. A total of 12 fruit tree species were recorded in agri-horticulture system; of which 4 trees were common in northern and southern aspect and 6 trees were only noticed in northern aspect while 2 in the southern. The apple tree (Malus domestica was recorded to be dominant fruit tree species with highest IVI values on both northern and southern aspect with prime preference by the farmers for high additional economic return in agri-horticulture system. Among the shrubs, the 6 shrub species were recorded on the northern aspect whereas there number was 16 on southern aspect. The agricultural crop diversity was higher on the northern aspect in summer and winter season. The average annual productivity of grain under agri-horticulture system recorded 1106 kg·ha–1·year–1 on northern aspect and 1122 kg·ha–1·year–1 on southern with a reduction of 34.56% and 38.29% compared to the sole agriculture crops. The aspect and season also played significantly role in grain, straw and biological productivity of agricultural crops present in agri-horticulture and sole cropping systems. In general there was reduction in yield of agricultural crops under fruit trees but this reduction is supplemented by fruit production which support and sustain the rural community of this hilly region.

  7. Surface N Balances in Agricultural Crop Production Systems in China for the Period 1980-2015

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    SUN Bo; SHEN Run-Ping; A.F.BOUWMAN

    2008-01-01

    Surface nitrogen (N) balances for ChinEs crop production systems was estimated using statistical data collected from 1980 to 2004 at the national and provincial scale and from 1994 to 1999 at the county level.There was a surplus N balance throughout these periods,but the surplus was nearly stable in recent years.Projections using nonseasonal Box-Jenkins model or exponential models show that the N surplus for the total cultivated land in China was likely to increase from 142.8 kg ha-1 in 2004 to 168.6 kg ha-1 in 2015.The N balance surplus in the more developed southeastern provinces was the largest,and was slightly less in the central region,which caused the nitrate pollution in the ground water.The N surplus was much less in the western and northern provinces because of lower synthetic fertilizer inputs.The region with high N risk includes Beijing Municipality and Jiangsu,Zhejiang,Fujian,Guangdong,Hubei,and Shandong provinces for 2002-2004.The projections suggested that 15 provinces (or municipalities) in the middle and southeastern part of China except Jiangxi and Shanxi provinces would become the high-risk region by 2015.The level of economic development,transportation,and labor force condition had an important effect on the N balance surplus at the county level,but the last two factors showed remarkable impact at the provincial level.To decrease the nonpoint pollution (Npp) risk from crop production,the authors suggested to reduce the target level for national grain self-sufficiency to 90%-95% and change the regional structure of grain production by moving some of the future grain production from the high Npp risk areas of eastern China to parts of the central and western provinces where the Npp risk was much less.

  8. Energy crop (Sida hermaphrodita) fertilization using digestate under marginal soil conditions: A dose-response experiment

    OpenAIRE

    Nabel, Moritz; Barbosa, Daniela; Horsch, David; Jablonowski, Nicolai David

    2014-01-01

    The global demand for energy security and the mitigation of climate change are the main drivers pushing the production of crops for energy purposes (energy crops). However, the cultivation of these plants can cause land use conflicts since agricultural soil is mostly used for food crop production. A sustainable alternative to the conventional cultivation of food-based energy-crops is the cultivation of non-food energy crops on marginal lands. To further increase the sustainability of energy c...

  9. Balance sheet method assessment for nitrogen fertilization in winter wheat: II. alternative strategies using the CropSyst simulation model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Corbellini

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available It is important, both for farmer profit and for the environment, to correctly dose fertilizer nitrogen (N for winter wheat growth. Balance-sheet methods are often used to calculate the recommended dose of N fertilizer. Other methods are based on the dynamic simulation of cropping systems. Aim of the work was to evaluate the balance-sheet method set up by the Region Emilia-Romagna (DPI, by comparing it with the cropping systems simulation model CropSyst (CS, and with an approach based on fixed supplies of N (T. A 3-year trial was structured as a series of N fertility regimes at 3 sites (Papiano di Marsciano, Ravenna, San Pancrazio. The N-regimes were generated at each site-year as separate trials in which 3 N rates were applied: N1 (DPI, N2 (DPI+50 kg ha-1 N at spike initiation, N3 (DPI + 50 kg ha-1 N at early booting. Above ground biomass and soil data (NO3-N and water were sampled and used to calibrate CS. Doses of fertilizer N were calculated by both DPI and CS for winter wheat included in three typical rotations for Central and Northern Italy. Both these methods and method T were simulated at each site over 50 years, by using daily generated weather data. The long-term simulation allowed evaluating such alternative fertilization strategies. DPI and CS estimated comparable crop yields and N leached amounts, and both resulted better than T. Minor risk of leaching emerged for all N doses. The N2 and N3 rates allowed slightly higher crop yields than N1.

  10. Energy efficiency procedures for agricultural machinery used in onion cultivation (Allium fistulosum) as an alternative to reduce carbon emissions under the clean development mechanism at Aquitania (Colombia)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Climate change has both causes and consequences over agriculture. This paper focuses on the first element and presents scenarios for ASOLAGO -an onion cropper's association in Colombia with 250 members- to reduce their carbon footprint. It evaluates a case study at ''La Primavera'' farm using a methodology approved by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Land preparation and crop irrigation were analyzed as stages in order to propose energy efficiency alternatives for both the farm and the association. They include field efficiency, fuel economy and energy efficiency from biofuels for the first stage as well as solar and wind energy supply for the second. A cost-benefit analysis to generate additional income selling additional power produced by the system to the National Grid was done

  11. Energy efficiency procedures for agricultural machinery used in onion cultivation (Allium fistulosum) as an alternative to reduce carbon emissions under the clean development mechanism at Aquitania (Colombia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ochoa, K.; Carrillo, S.; Gutierrez, L.

    2014-06-01

    Climate change has both causes and consequences over agriculture. This paper focuses on the first element and presents scenarios for ASOLAGO -an onion cropper's association in Colombia with 250 members- to reduce their carbon footprint. It evaluates a case study at "La Primavera" farm using a methodology approved by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Land preparation and crop irrigation were analyzed as stages in order to propose energy efficiency alternatives for both the farm and the association. They include field efficiency, fuel economy and energy efficiency from biofuels for the first stage as well as solar and wind energy supply for the second. A cost-benefit analysis to generate additional income selling additional power produced by the system to the National Grid was done.

  12. Control of an Autonomous Vehicle for Registration of Weed and Crop in Precision Agriculture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Kirsten Mølgaard; Andersen, Palle; Pedersen, Tom Søndergaard;

    2002-01-01

    The paper describes the development of an autonomous electrical vehicle to be used for weed mapping in precision agriculture with special focus on the conceptual framework of the control system. The lowest layer of the control system is the propulsion and steering control, the second layer...... coordinates the movements of the wheel units, the third layer is path execution and perception and the upper layer performs planning and reasoning. The control system is implemented on an autonomous vehicle. The vehicle has been tested for path following and position accuracy. Based on the results a new...... vehicle is under construction....

  13. An Alternative Use of Horticultural Crops: Stressed Plants as Biofactories of Bioactive Phenolic Compounds

    OpenAIRE

    Luis Cisneros-Zevallos; Daniel A. Jacobo-Velázquez

    2012-01-01

    Plants subjected to abiotic stresses synthesize secondary metabolites with potential application in the functional foods, dietary supplements, pharmaceutical, cosmetics and agrochemical markets. This approach can be extended to horticultural crops. This review describes previous reports regarding the effect of different postharvest abiotic stresses on the accumulation of phenolic compounds. Likewise, the physiological basis for the biosynthesis of phenolic compounds as an abiotic stress respo...

  14. A study on the determination of electromagnetic reflection values of agricultural crop pattern to improve accuracy of land use map by remote sensing technique

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mustafa Bolca

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available With this study, using remote sensing technique, a data base which covers data on the electromagnetic energy reflections of various kinds of plants has been formed with the purpose of determining crop patterns. A 1/5.000 scale cadastral map was used as topographic map for the purpose of using remote sensing technique more effectively and sensibly for such crops as cotton, maize and sun flower of which the agriculture is exercised widely in Torbalı township and in this context in all the Aegean Region. In the current study, August 2001 dated Landsat 7 satellite images of the region were interpreted and ground realities and satellite images of the agricultural crops with high economic value which are widely cultivated in the region were overlapped and their values of reflection were determined. Images thus obtained were overlapped with 1/5.000 cadastre maps and product varieties could be determined at the basis of large section of a map, plot and parcel. Separately collaboration with technical personnel from the Directorate of Torbalı Township Agriculture was achieved in field and lab studies, and by transferring the data obtained into their computers, tangible steps were taken in the direction of applying technology at the basis of the Township. As a result, an important and basic database was formed that could be used for the payout of incentive premiums to the local organization for various crops or that could render functionality to the implementation of Agricultural policies based on record system.

  15. Rapid Prototyping of NASA's Solar and Meteorological Data For Regional Level Modeling of Agricultural and Bio-fuel Crop Phenology and Yield Potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoell, J. M.; Stackhouse, P. W.; Eckman, R. S.

    2006-12-01

    Global demand for food, feedstock and bio-fuel crops is expanding rapidly due to population growth, increasing consumption of these products (especially in developing countries), and more recently skyrocketing use of these crops to produce ethanol as a bio-fuel. As a result, there are growing concerns, both in the US and world wide, about the ability to meet the projected demand for agricultural/bio-fuel crops without expanding production areas into environmentally sensitive regions. Concurrently, there are increasing concerns over the negative impact of global warming on crop yields. Accurate ecophysiological crop models have been developed for many of the food and bio-fuel crops and serve as the back-bone in sophisticated Decision Support Systems (DSS). These DSS's are increasingly being used to address the balance between the need to increase production/efficiency and environmental concerns, as well as the impact of global warming on crop production. Realistic application of these agricultural DSS's requires accurate environmental data on time scales ranging from hours to decades. To date only sparse surface measurements are used that typically do not measure solar irradiance. NASA's Prediction of Worldwide Energy Resource (POWER) project, which has as one of its objectives the development of data products for agricultural applications, currently provides a climatological data base of meteorological parameters and surface solar energy fluxes on a global 1-degree latitude by 1- degree longitude grid. NASA is also developing capabilities to produce near-real time data sets specifically designed for application by agricultural DSS's. In this presentation, we discuss the development of 1-degree global data products which combine the climatological data in the POWER project archive (http://earth-www.larc.nasa.gov/power), near real time (2 to 3 day lag) meteorological data from the Goddard Earth Observing System (GEOS) quick-look products, and global solar energy

  16. Agricultural practices and horizontal nutrient balances in urban gardens and the alternative use of urban agricultural land in Khartoum, Sudan

    OpenAIRE

    Abdalla, Sahar Babiker Ahmed

    2012-01-01

    The surge in the urban population evident in most developing countries is a worldwide phenomenon, and often the result of drought, conflicts, poverty and the lack of education opportunities. In parallel with the growth of the cities is the growing need for food which leads to the burgeoning expansion of urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA). In this context, urban agriculture (UA) contributes significantly to supplying local markets with both vegetable and animal produce. As an income genera...

  17. The occurrence and measurement of genotype x environment interactions in agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper presents a review of research dealing with the occurrence and measurement of genotype x environment interactions of yield and other quantitative characters in economic crops. The conventional analysis of variance approach mainly considers the average performance of all genotypes in a trial grown over a range of environments covering different locations and years. This analysis of variance method has been further extended to incorporate a regression analysis of G X E interactions. With regression analysis approach, the significant G X E interaction sum of squares is partitioned into linear and non-linear components, thus indicating whether G X E interaction is a linear function of environment or a more complex function. Different investigators have shown that the performance of individual genotypes are linear functions of the environmental values to which they collectively subscribe. When the genotype response across environments is predominatly linear, the regression coefficient (b) parameter for each genotype provides a measure of its adaptation or phenotypic stability. On the other hand, when the non-linear (deviation) component is large, another parameter (deviation mean squares i.e. ( S2d) is required to specify the stability of genotypes across environments. A stable genotype is defined as one with bi = 1.0 and S2di = 0

  18. Identifying crop specific signals for global agricultural monitoring based on the stability of daily multi-angular MODIS reflectance time series

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duveiller, G.; Lopez-Lozano, R.

    2013-12-01

    Global agricultural monitoring requires satellite Earth Observation systems that maximize the observation revisit frequency over the largest possible geographical coverage. Such compromise has thus far resulted in using a spatial resolution that is often coarser than desired. As a consequence, for many agricultural landscapes across the world, crop status can only be inferred from a mixed signal of the landscape (with a pixel size typically close to 1 km), composed of reflectance from neighbouring fields with potentially different crops, variable phenological behaviours and distinct management practices. MODIS has been providing, since 2000, a higher spatial resolution (~250m) that is closer to the size of individual fields in many agro-ecological landscapes. However, the challenge for operational crop specific monitoring remains to identify in time where a given crop has been sown during the current growing season. An innovative use of MODIS daily data is proposed for crop identification based on the stability of the multi-angular signal. MODIS is a whiskbroom sensor with a large swath. For any given place, consecutive MODIS observations are made with considerably different viewing angles according to the daily change in orbit. Consequently, the footprint of the observation varies considerably, thereby sampling the vicinity around the centre of the grid cell in which the time series is ultimately recorded in. If the consecutive observations that have sampled the vicinity provide similar NDVI values (for which BRDF effects are reduced), the resulting temporal signal is relatively stable. This stability indicated that the signal comes from a spatially homogeneous surface, such as a single large field covered by the same crop with similar agro-management practices. If the resulting temporal signal is noisy, it is probable that the consecutive daily observations have sampled different land uses, thus contaminating the signal. Such time series can therefore be

  19. Challenges and Alternatives to Sustainable Management of Agriculture and Pastoral Ecosystems in Asian Drylands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, J.

    2015-12-01

    There is no question that human must produce additional 70% food to feed the new 2.2 billion of people on the planet by 2050, but the question is where to grow the additional food. The demand for the additional food lies not only in producing the basic resources needed to sustain a healthy lifestyle, but also from a changing diet, especially in rapidly developing countries in the dryland regions around the world. It is forecast that this demand for meat will require an additional 0.2 billion tons per year by 2050, which is almost a doubling of present meat consumption. These new demands create mounting pressures on agriculture and pastoral ecosystems and the reported trajectory of warmer and drier climate in the future increases uncertainties in food security, adding further stresses to the already stressed nations in the Asian dryland belt. Different approaches are being either proposed or practiced in the region but the question is whether or not the current practices are sustainable or optimal in addressing the emerging issues. Given the complexity and interplay among the food, water and energy, what are alternatives to ensure a sustainable trajectory of regional development to meet the new food demand? This presentation reviews existing practices and proposes alternative solutions, by specifically examining the trade-offs between different ecosystem services that drylands in Asian may provide. Preliminary analysis suggested that the current trajectory of meat and milk production is likely not on a sustainable pathway.

  20. Construction and Establishment of Sci-tech Platform for Agricultural Scientific Research Institutions: A Case Study of Tropical Crops Genetic Resources Institute of Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lizhen; CHEN; Yu; ZHENG; Haiyan; LUO; Qingqun; YAO

    2014-01-01

    Taking Tropical Crops Genetic Resources Institute( TCGRI) of Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences( CATAS) as an example,this paper discussed current situation of construction of sci-tech platform,analyzed existing problems,and finally came up with pertinent recommendations.

  1. FAO-56 methodology for determining water requirement of irrigated crops: critical examination of the concepts, alternative proposals and validation in Mediterranean region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katerji, Nader; Rana, Gianfranco

    2014-05-01

    The present study evaluates firstly the ability of the FAO-56 methodology, based on the two-step approach "reference evapotranspiration (ET0)—crop coefficient ( K c)," to accurately determine the actual evapotranspiration (ET) of irrigated crops and proposes, secondly, the alternative approaches for improving this determination. The FAO-56 methodology is supported by two hypotheses: (1) ET0 represents all effects of weather and (2) K c varies predominately with specific crop characteristics and only marginally with climate, which enables the transfer of K c standard values among locations and climates. On the base of the theoretical analysis and experimental observations, a critical examination of the previous hypotheses demonstrates that they are not verified by reality. The first hypothesis is not verified for two reasons: (a) The formulation adapted by the Penman-Monteith equation and proposed in FAO-56 methodology for calculating ET0 uses climatic variables determined at a 24-h average scale. However, in principle it is only valid in permanent regime, in other words at least on an hourly scale. (b) The FAO-56-proposed formulation attributes a constant value to the canopy resistance of the reference surface; but in reality, this resistance is variable in relation to the climatic variables. The second hypothesis, concerning the two-step approach, is also not verified because the values of K c largely vary in relation to climatic variables (radiation, air vapour pressure deficit and wind speed). This fact does not support the possibility of the transferability of K c values into locations where the local conditions deviate from the conditions where the adjusted values of K c were determined. The weakness of the ET estimation, observed on several crops cultivated in the Mediterranean region, through the application of the FAO-56 methodology, is the result of errors accumulation, associated with that affects the determination of either ET0 or K c. The present

  2. Reduction of Yield and Income Risk Under Alternative Crop Insurance and Disaster Assistance Plans

    OpenAIRE

    Carriker, Gordon L.; Williams, Jeffery R.; Barnaby, Glenn Arthur, Jr.; Black, J. Roy

    1990-01-01

    This study compares the effectiveness of five crop insurance/disaster assistance plans: an individual farm yield insurance plan similar to the current FCIC multi-peril program ; two area yield insurance plans; a farm yield disaster assistance plan; and an area yield disaster assistance plan. These methods are examined for reduction in yield and gross income variability with and without participation in the government deficiency payment programs using farm-level yield data from 98 dryland whea...

  3. Short Rotation Coppice for Phytoremediation of a Metal-Contaminated Agricultural Area: A Sustainability Assessment

    OpenAIRE

    Witters, Nele; Van Slycken, Stijn; Ruttens, Ann; Adriaensen, Kristin; Meers, Erik; Meiresonne, Linda; Tack, Filip; Thewys, Theo; Laes, Erik; Vangronsveld, Jaco

    2009-01-01

    Large areas of land contaminated with cadmium (Cd), lead (Pb), and zinc (Zn) are currently in agricultural production in the Campine region in Belgium. Cadmium contents in food and fodder crops frequently exceed legal threshold values, resulting in crop confiscation. This imposes a burden on agriculture and regional policy and, therefore, encourages proper soil management. One way to increase agricultural income and improve soil quality is by growing alternative nonfood crops such as willows ...

  4. Caesium-137 root uptake by agricultural and wild crops in post-Chernobyl landscape: the possibilities for phytoremediation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paramonova, Tatiana; Shamshurina, Eugenia; Komissarova, Olga; Belyaev, Vladimir

    2015-04-01

    In spite of long term period after Chernobyl fallout (≈25 years after the accident) the level of Cs-137 in soils of contaminated landscapes remains several times more than radiation safety standard (= 37 kBq/m2). In particular, within the area of Plavsk radioactive hot spot (Tula region, Russia) current Cs-137 activities in soil are 460-500 Bq/kg (170-200 kBq/m2) on watershed, 580-680 Bq/kg (200-220 kBq/m2) in arable lower parts of slopes and 620-710 Bq/kg (210-280 kBq/m2) in untilled foots of slopes and river floodplains. To estimate the process of Cs-137 root uptake and incorporation of the radionuclide in plant tissues 6 agricultural crops of typical field rotation (spring barley, maize, summer rape, galega, potatoes, amaranth) as well as natural ecosystems of dry and wet meadows were selected for the detailed study. Total bioproductivity of agricultural crops varies between 1.7-3.9 kg/m2, natural grass ecosystems - 1.9-2.2 g/m2, and is obviously unaffected by radioactive land contamination. At the same time Cs-137 activity in total biomass slightly increases with Cs-137 activity in soil (correlation coefficient r=0.45) and with total biomass (correlation coefficient r=0.51) in the row: rape (5 Bq/kg) rape (Brassicaceae family) and potatoes (Solanaceae family) are characterized by similar Cs-137 concentrations in the structural parts (but note, that belowground part of the last is mostly represented by modified shoots); while galega and amaranth (Fabaceae and Amaranthaceae families respectively) are characterized by higher Cs-137 activity in aboveground part (4-6 times more than in roots). Therefore, meadow grasses and cereals that are true accumulators of Cs-137 seem to be useless for phytoremediation purposes, as 86-97% of the radionuclide inventory is associated with roots and remains in soil after cutting of aboveground parts. On the other hand, galega and amaranth could be considered as agricultural crops potentially being used for phytoremediation, since

  5. TECHNOLOGY FOR THE PREPARATION OF LIVESTOCK WASTEWATER FOR IRRIGATION OF AGRICULTURAL CROPS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Domashenko Y. E.

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available In the article the authors propose various techniques for the preparation of livestock waste for agricultural use, particularly for irrigation. We have considered resource-saving environmentally safe technology for processing livestock waste pig farms based on the use of the reagent preparation phosphogypsum – residuals of phosphoric acid and fertilizers. The technology was tested and endorsed at the operating company LLC "Aksai field" of the Rostov region. Also based on this technology, we have offered the following technical solution: livestock wastewater is exposed to the vortex field with movable ferromagnetic particles, which contributes to more complete disinfecting effect. Further improvement of the technological scheme of training for livestock waste allowed to get more modern technical solution, including sewage treatment acidifying reagent is a suspension of phosphogypsum and slightly basic by oxychloride brand Aqua-Aurat. With the aim of reducing the cost and simplifying the technology of training we offered using a reagent, obtained from natural raw materials - silica-coagulant on the basis of nepheline instead of the low-base oxychloride brand Aqua-AuraTM. Aluminosilicate coagulant on the basis of nepheline may be used at high values of COD up to 2000 mg O/l and TBOD to 1500 mg O/l, which is a limitation for the use of such coagulants in the preparation of livestock wastewater pig farms. All the proposed technologies are based on the positions of resource and energy efficiency and environmental safety

  6. Genotyping-by-Sequencing SNP Identification for Crops without a Reference Genome: Using Transcriptome Based Mapping as an Alternative Strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berthouly-Salazar, Cécile; Mariac, Cédric; Couderc, Marie; Pouzadoux, Juliette; Floc'h, Jean-Baptiste; Vigouroux, Yves

    2016-01-01

    Next-generation sequencing opens the way for genomic studies of diversity even for non-model crops and animals. Genome reduction techniques are becoming progressively more popular as they allow a fraction of the genome to be sequenced for multiple individuals and/or populations. These techniques are an efficient way to explore genome diversity in non-model crops and animals for which no reference genome is available. Genome reduction techniques emerged with the development of specific pipelines such as UNEAK (Universal Network Enabled Analysis Kit) and Stacks. However, even for non-model crops and animals, transcriptomes are easier to obtain, thereby making it possible to directly map reads. We investigate the direct use of transcriptome as an alternative strategy. Our specific objective was to compare SNPs obtained from the UNEAK pipeline as well as SNPs obtained by directly mapping genotyping-by-sequencing reads on a transcriptome. We assessed the feasibility of both SNP datasets, UNEAK and transcriptome mapping, to investigate the diversity of 91 samples of wild pearl millet sampled across its distribution area. Both approaches produced several tens of thousands of single nucleotide variants, but differed in the way the variants were identified, leading to differences in the frequency spectrum associated with marked differences in the assessment of diversity. Difference in the frequency spectrum significantly biased a large set of diversity analyses as well as detection of selection approaches. However, whatever the approach, we found very similar inference of genetic structure, with three major genetic groups from West, Central, and East Africa. For non-model crops, using transcriptome data as a reference is thus a particularly promising way to obtain a more thorough analysis of datasets generated using genome reduction techniques. PMID:27379109

  7. Agro-ecological aspects when applying the remaining products from agricultural biogas processes as fertilizer in crop production

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bermejo Dominguez, Gabriela

    2012-06-11

    With the increase of biogas production in recent years, the amount of digestates or the remaining residues increased accordingly. Every year in Germany more than 50 million tons of digestates are produced, which are used as fertilizer. Thus nutrients return into the circulation of agricultural ecosystems. However, the agro-ecological effects have not been deeply researched until now. For this reason, the following parameters were quantified: the influence of dry and liquid fermentation products on the yield of three selected crops in comparison to or in combination with mineral-N-fertilizers in on-farm experiments; the growth, development and yield of two selected crops in comparison to mineral-N-fertilizer, liquid manure and farmyard manure in a randomized complete block design; selected soil organisms as compared to mineral-N-fertilizer, liquid manure and farmyard manure in a randomized complete block design. In addition, the mineralization of dry and wet digestates in comparison with liquid manure and farmyard manure was investigated in order to evaluate the effects of different fertilizers on the humus formation under controlled conditions. The 2-year results of on-farm experiments showed that for a sandy soil, the combination of digestates in autumn and mineral-N-fertilizer in spring for winter crops (wheat, rye and rape) brought the highest yields. The wet digestate achieved the highest dry-matter yield as the only fertilizer for maize in spring. In a clayey soil, the use of 150 kg ha{sup -1} N mineral-N-fertilizer brought the highest grain yield. These results were similar to the ones obtained by the application of dry digestates, if they were applied in two doses. Maize showed no signif-icant differences between the dry-matter yields of the different treatments. The results in the field experiments from 2009 to 2011 showed that the effect of digestates on the yield of winter wheat and Sorghum sudanense was up to 15 % lower than the effect of the mineral

  8. Fate of Carbofuran and Interaction with Agricultural Chemicals in a Soil-Crop-Water System

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Full text: The fate, movement, and metabolism of 14C-(ring)-carbofuran and its interaction with agricultural chemicals was studied in a soil-corn-water system. Movement of carbofuran through soils occurred under both percolating and non-percolating conditions. Under percolating conditions 49.13% of applied 14C leached through the soil into the aquaria. Thus, less 14C-residues were recovered from percolated soils than from nonpercolated soils, 25.85 and 57.90% of applied C, respectively. The control corn contained more than twice as much 14C-residues as the corn grown under percolating conditions, 22.16 and 10.78% of applied C, respectively. 14C-(ring)-carbofuran residues added to aquaria containing a layer of lake mud rapidly disappeared from the water and the majority became bound to the lake mud or was metabolized by the Elodea plants to water-soluble or bound 14C-residues. After 3 weeks incubation 14C-residues associated with the water, lake mud, Elodea plants and guppies were 2.14, 19.17, 3.65, and 0.19% of applied 14C, respectively. Initially, the percolated water containing 14C-residues was toxic to both guppies and Aedes aegypti Linnaeus larvae. However, guppies and Aedes larvae introduced after 9 days incubation survived for the remainder of the experiment. This indicated that toxic 14C-residues had either degraded to non-toxic compounds or were no longer associated with the water. (author)

  9. Fullerene-enhanced accumulation of p,p'-DDE in agricultural crop species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De La Torre-Roche, Roberto; Hawthorne, Joseph; Deng, Yingqing; Xing, Baoshan; Cai, Wenjun; Newman, Lee A; Wang, Chen; Ma, Xingmao; White, Jason C

    2012-09-01

    The effect of C(60) fullerene exposure on the accumulation of dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (p,p'-DDE; DDT metabolite) by Cucurbita pepo L. (zucchini), Glycine max L. (soybean), and Solanum lycopersicum L. (tomato) was determined. The plants were grown in 125 mL jars of vermiculite amended with 0 or 40 mg of C(60) fullerenes. Prior to planting, the jars were amended with 40 mL solution containing 100 ng/mL of p,p'-DDE with 0 or 100 mg/L humic acid. During three weeks of growth, plants were watered with the same p,p'-DDE containing solutions. Total shoot p,p'-DDE levels in nonfullerene exposed tomato, soybean, and zucchini were 26.9, 131, and 675 ng, respectively; total root DDE content for the three plants was 402, 5970, and 5830 ng, respectively. Fullerenes increased the shoot p,p'-DDE content of zucchini by 29%; contaminant levels in soybean shoots were decreased by 48% but tomato shoot content was unaffected. The root and total plant p,p'-DDE content of all three species was significantly increased by fullerene exposure; enhanced contaminant uptake ranged from 30 to 65%. Humic acid, regardless of fullerene presence or plant type, significantly decreased the p,p'-DDE uptake. Fullerenes were detected in the roots of all plants but were not detected in plant shoots in the initial study. In a follow up study with zucchini designed to maximize biomass for extraction, over half the analyzed stems contained fullerenes at 60.5 to 4490 ng/g. These findings show that the carbon-based nanomaterials may significantly alter the accumulation and potentially the toxicity of cocontaminants in agricultural systems. PMID:22856886

  10. Nutrient uptake by agricultural crops from biochar-amended soils: results from two field experiments in Austria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karer, Jasmin; Zehetner, Franz; Kloss, Stefanie; Wimmer, Bernhard; Soja, Gerhard

    2013-04-01

    The use of biochar as soil amendment is considered as a promising agricultural soil management technique, combining carbon sequestration and soil fertility improvements. These expectations are largely founded on positive experiences with biochar applications to impoverished or degraded tropical soils. The validity of these results for soils in temperate climates needs confirmation from field experiments with typical soils representative for intensive agricultural production areas. Frequently biochar is mixed with other organic additives like compost. As these two materials interact with each other and each one may vary considerably in its basic characteristics, it is difficult to attribute the effects of the combined additive to one of its components and to a specific physico-chemical parameter. Therefore investigations of the amendment efficacy require the study of the pure components to characterize their specific behavior in soil. This is especially important for adsorption behavior of biochar for macro- and micronutrients because in soil there are multiple nutrient sinks that compete with plant roots for vital elements. Therefore this contribution presents results from a field amendment study with pure biochar that had the objective to characterize the macro- and microelement uptake of crops from different soils in two typical Austrian areas of agricultural production. At two locations in North and South-East Austria, two identical field experiments on different soils (Chernozem and Cambisol) were installed in 2011 with varying biochar additions (0, 30 and 90 t/ha) and two nitrogen levels. The biochar was a product from slow pyrolysis of wood (SC Romchar SRL). During the installation of the experiments, the biochar fraction of <2 mm was mixed with surface soil to a depth of 15 cm in plots of 33 m2 each (n=4). Barley (at the Chernozem soil) and maize (at the Cambisol) were cultivated according to standard agricultural practices. The highest crop yields at both

  11. The potential of standards-based agriculture biology as an alternative to traditional biology in California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sellu, George Sahr

    schools. Thoron & Meyer (2011) suggested that research into the contribution of integrated science courses toward higher test scores yielded mixed results. This finding may have been due in part to the fact that integrated science courses only incorporate select topics into agriculture education courses. In California, however, agriculture educators have developed standards-based courses such as Agriculture Biology (AgBio) that cover the same content standards as core traditional courses such as traditional biology. Students in both AgBio and traditional biology take the same standardized biology test. This is the first time there has been an opportunity for a fair comparison and a uniform metric for an agriscience course such as AgBio to be directly compared to traditional biology. This study will examine whether there are differences between AgBio and traditional biology with regard to standardized test scores in biology. Furthermore, the study examines differences in perception between teachers and students regarding teaching and learning activities associated with higher achievement in science. The findings of the study could provide a basis for presenting AgBio as a potential alternative to traditional biology. The findings of this study suggest that there are no differences between AgBio and traditional biology students with regard to standardized biology test scores. Additionally, the findings indicate that co-curricular activities in AgBio could contribute higher student achievement in biology. However, further research is required to identify specific activities in AgBio that contribute to higher achievement in science.

  12. Potentials of RapidEye time series for improved classification of crop rotations in heterogeneous agricultural landscapes: experiences from irrigation systems in Central Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conrad, Christopher; Machwitz, Miriam; Schorcht, Gunther; Löw, Fabian; Fritsch, Sebastian; Dech, Stefan

    2011-11-01

    In Central Asia, more than eight Million ha of agricultural land are under irrigation. But severe degradation problems and unreliable water distribution have caused declining yields during the past decades. Reliable and area-wide information about crops can be seen as important step to elaborate options for sustainable land and water management. Experiences from RapidEye classifications of crop in Central Asia are exemplarily shown during a classification of eight crop classes including three rotations with winter wheat, cotton, rice, and fallow land in the Khorezm region of Uzbekistan covering 230,000 ha of irrigated land. A random forest generated by using 1215 field samples was applied to multitemporal RapidEye data acquired during the vegetation period 2010. But RapidEye coverage varied and did not allow for generating temporally consistent mosaics covering the entire region. To classify all 55,188 agricultural parcels in the region three classification zones were classified separately. The zoning allowed for including at least three observation periods into classification. Overall accuracy exceeded 85 % for all classification zones. Highest accuracies of 87.4 % were achieved by including five spatiotemporal composites of RapidEye. Class-wise accuracy assessments showed the usefulness of selecting time steps which represent relevant phenological phases of the vegetation period. The presented approach can support regional crop inventory. Accurate classification results in early stages of the cropping season permit recalculation of crop water demands and reallocation of irrigation water. The high temporal and spatial resolution of RapidEye can be concluded highly beneficial for agricultural land use classifications in entire Central Asia.

  13. Crop Biotechnology

    Science.gov (United States)

    The influence of crop biotechnology on outcomes of agricultural practices and economics is readily evidenced by the escalating acreage of genetically engineered crops, all occurring in a relatively short time span. Until the mid 1990s, virtually no acreage was planted with commercial genetically mo...

  14. A study on the determination of electromagnetic reflection values of agricultural crop pattern to improve accuracy of land use map by remote sensing technique

    OpenAIRE

    Mustafa Bolca; Yusuf Kurucu; Ünal Altınbaş; M.Tolga Esetlili; Fulsen Özen

    2012-01-01

    With this study, using remote sensing technique, a data base which covers data on the electromagnetic energy reflections of various kinds of plants has been formed with the purpose of determining crop patterns. A 1/5.000 scale cadastral map was used as topographic map for the purpose of using remote sensing technique more effectively and sensibly for such crops as cotton, maize and sun flower of which the agriculture is exercised widely in Torbalı township and in this context in all the Aegea...

  15. Development of a technique of the rapid analysis for forecasting of possible radionuclides accumulation in the harvest of agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    One of the main ways of pollution of plants by radionuclides is the receipt of radionuclides in plants from ground through root system and direct uptake of radionuclides by underground parts of plants. Therefore receipt of radioisotopes in rhizosphere of plants plays the main role in radionuclides accumulation in the plants. For plants cultivation in conditions of radioactive pollution of region it is necessary to estimate the value of possible radionuclides accumulation in a harvest of plants. Such forecasts are necessary at planning of growing of agricultural crops for the food, forage or technical purposes depending on a degree of their pollution by radionuclides. We investigated correlation between the content of strontium - 90 in plants in early phases of their development (20 days time) and in a harvest of plants at a soil way of radionuclide receipt. Our results of study of dependence of strontium - 90 accumulation in a harvest from its content in 20 days time sprouts show, that with reduction of the content of strontium - 90 in 20 days time sprouts, its quantity in a harvest of agriculture cultures is reduced. The correlation analysis of the received data has confirmed positive connection between accumulation of radionuclide in young and adult plants. So, correlation coefficients for a cotton, wheat and barley are 0,89; 0,91 and 0,91 correspondingly. Thus, the direct connection between the contents of strontium - 90 in plants of young age and its accumulation in a harvest of adult plants is established. It enables to predict pollution of' harvest by strontium - 90 under its contents in young plants. Using the received data, with the help of the least- squares method, we have calculated coefficients of the regression equation of a kind: y = a + bx, Where: y - the predicted contents of radionuclide in the harvest; x - the content of radionuclide in 20 days time sprouts; a, b - the empirical coefficients. Rather good coincidence of theoretical calculations and

  16. Crop substitution behavior among food crop farmers in Ghana: An efficient adaptation to climate change or costly stagnation in traditional agricultural production system?

    OpenAIRE

    Issahaku, Zakaria A.; Maharjan, Keshav L.

    2014-01-01

    This study analyzes impact of climate change on yield, planting decisions and output of five major food crops (cassava, maize, sorghum, rice and yam) in Ghana. Results of Multivariate Tobit Model show that yield, planting decisions and output of cassava, maize, sorghum and rice will increase as a result of climate change. This is in clear contrast to the hypothesis that warming and drying will reduce crop yields in countries located within the tropics. Climate change impact on yields, plantin...

  17. Allelopathic potential of oil seed crops in production of crops: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Adnan Noor; Iqbal, Javaid; Ullah, Abid; Yang, Guozheng; Yousaf, Muhammad; Fahad, Shah; Tanveer, Mohsin; Hassan, Waseem; Tung, Shahbaz Atta; Wang, Leishan; Khan, Aziz; Wu, Yingying

    2016-08-01

    Agricultural production enhancement has been realized by more consumption of fossil energy such as fertilizer and agrochemicals. However, the production provides the present human with sufficient and diversified commodities, but at the same time, deprives in some extent the resources from the future human as well. In the other hand, it is known that synthetic herbicides face worldwide threats to human's health and environment as well. Therefore, it is a great challenge for agricultural sustainable development. The current review has been focussed on various oilseed crop species which launch efficient allelopathic intervention, either with weeds or other crops. Crop allelopathic properties can make one species more persistent to a native species. Therefore, these crops are potentially harmful to both naturalized as well as agricultural settings. On the other side, allelopathic crops provide strong potential for the development of cultivars that are more highly weed suppressive in managed settings. It is possible to utilize companion plants that have no deleterious effect on neighbor crops and can be included in intercropping system, thus, a mean of contributing to agricultural sustainable development. In mixed culture, replacement method, wherein differing densities of a neighbor species are planted, has been used to study phytotoxic/competitive effects. So, to use alternative ways for weed suppression has become very crucial. Allelochemicals have the ability to create eco-friendly products for weed management, which is beneficial for agricultural sustainable development. Our present study assessed the potential of four oilseed crops for allelopathy on other crops and associated weeds. PMID:27263104

  18. Fibre crops as alternative land use for radioactively contaminated arable land

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The transfer of radiocaesium, one of the most important and widespread contaminants following a nuclear accident, to the fibre crops hemp (Cannabis sativa L.) and flax (Linum usitatissimum L.) as well as the distribution of radiocaesium during crop conversion were studied for sandy soil under greenhouse and lysimeters conditions. Soil parameters did not unequivoqually explain the transfer factors (TF) observed. TFs to flax stems ranged from 1.34 to 2.80 x 10-3 m2 kg-1. TFs to seeds are about a factor of 4 lower. During the retting process for separating the fibres from the straw, more than 95% of the activity was removed with the retting water. For hemp, the TF to the stem was about 0.6 x 10-3 m2 kg-1. For hemp, straw and fibres were mechanically separated and TF to straw was about 0.5 x 10-3 m2 kg-1 and to fibres 1.0 x 10-3 m2 kg-1. Generally, the TFs to the useable plant parts both for hemp and flax, are low enough to allow for the production of clean end-products (fibre, seed oil, biofuel) even on heavily contaminated land. Given the considerable decontamination during retting, contamination levels in flax fibres would only exceed the exemption limits for fibre use after production in extreme contamination scenarios (>12 300 kBq m-2). Since hemp fibres are mechanically separated, use of hemp fibres is more restricted (contamination -2). Use of stems as biofuel is restricted to areas with contamination levels of -2 for flax and hemp, respectively. Use of seeds for edible oil production and flour is possible almost without restriction for flax but due to the high TFs to seed observed for hemp (up to 3 x 10-3 m2 kg-1) consumption of hemp seed products should be considered with care

  19. EVALUATION OF CURRENTLY AVAILABLE ALTERNATIVES TO METHYL BROMIDE FOR ORNAMENTAL CROP PRODUCTION IN FLORIDA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Studies were designed to test the efficacy of the chemical alternatives, Midas™ (iodomethane:chloropicrin (pic) 50:50 [MI 50:50] and 98:2 [MI 98:2], Arysta LifeScience Corp., Cary, NC) and dimethyl disulfide:pic (Paladin™ 79:21 [DMDS], United Phosphorous, Inc., King of Prussia, PA) compared with met...

  20. Evaluation of Electronic Commerce (E-Commerce with SWOT Analysis as an Alternative Network Marketing at Agricultural Marketing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nuray Kızılaslan

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Compulsory competition occurring in the world trade has led the enterprises to different marketing system. Marketing problems seems to be a problem in Turkey rather than agricultural production problems. In this aspect, marketing alternatives are sought. E-commerce is a system with more opportunities in agricultural marketing. Increasing the applicability of this system in Turkey will eliminate many problems associated with marketing in agriculture. With an active use of E-commerce in agricultural marketing, it provides convenience at marketing products of agro-related industries agencies and producers and all country will have a potential market position. In this study, possibilities offered by e-commerce to the agricultural sector, opportunities, threats, deficiencies and contributions to agricultural sector have been addressed. Without the limitations of place and time via the internet and computers, establishing national and international supply and demand balance of e-commerce seems to play important roles in maintaining an active and alive marketing. Furthermore, it is an important tool in reducing agricultural marketing problems.

  1. Impacts of varying agricultural intensification on crop yield and groundwater resources: comparison of the North China Plain and US High Plains

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Agricultural intensification is often considered the primary approach to meet rising food demand. Here we compare impacts of intensive cultivation on crop yield in the North China Plain (NCP) with less intensive cultivation in the US High Plains (USHP) and associated effects on water resources using spatial datasets. Average crop yield during the past decade from intensive double cropping of wheat and corn in the NCP was only 15% higher than the yield from less intensive single cropping of corn in the USHP, although nitrogen fertilizer application and percent of cropland that was irrigated were both ∼2 times greater in the NCP than in the USHP. Irrigation and fertilization in both regions have depleted groundwater storage and resulted in widespread groundwater nitrate contamination. The limited response to intensive management in the NCP is attributed in part to the two month shorter growing season for corn to accommodate winter wheat than that for corn in the USHP. Previous field and modeling studies of crop yield in the NCP highlight over application of N and water resulting in low nitrogen and water use efficiencies and indicate that cultivars, plant densities, soil fertility and other factors had a much greater impact on crop yields over the past few decades. The NCP–USHP comparison along with previous field and modeling studies underscores the need to weigh the yield returns from intensive management relative to the negative impacts on water resources. Future crop management should consider the many factors that contribute to yield along with optimal fertilization and irrigation to further increase crop yields while reducing adverse impacts on water resources. (letter)

  2. Modelling climate change impacts on and adaptation strategies for agriculture in Sardinia and Tunisia using AquaCrop and value-at-risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bird, David Neil; Benabdallah, Sihem; Gouda, Nadine; Hummel, Franz; Koeberl, Judith; La Jeunesse, Isabelle; Meyer, Swen; Prettenthaler, Franz; Soddu, Antonino; Woess-Gallasch, Susanne

    2016-02-01

    In Europe, there is concern that climate change will cause significant impacts around the Mediterranean. The goals of this study are to quantify the economic risk to crop production, to demonstrate the variability of yield by soil texture and climate model and to investigate possible adaptation strategies. In the Rio Mannu di San Sperate watershed, located in Sardinia (Italy) we investigate production of wheat, a rainfed crop. In the Chiba watershed located in Cap Bon (Tunisia), we analyze irrigated tomato production. We find, using the FAO model AquaCrop that crop production will decrease significantly in a future climate (2040-2070) as compared to the present without adaptation measures. Using "value-at-risk", we show that production should be viewed in a statistical manner. Wheat yields in Sardinia are modelled to decrease by 64% on clay loams, and to increase by 8% and 26% respectively on sandy loams and sandy clay loams. Assuming constant irrigation, tomatoes sown in August in Cap Bon are modelled to have a 45% chance of crop failure on loamy sands; a 39% decrease in yields on sandy clay loams; and a 12% increase in yields on sandy loams. For tomatoes sown in March; sandy clay loams will fail 81% of the time; on loamy sands the crop yields will be 63% less while on sandy loams, the yield will increase by 12%. However, if one assume 10% less water available for irrigation then tomatoes sown in March are not viable. Some adaptation strategies will be able to counteract the modelled crop losses. Increasing the amount of irrigation one strategy however this may not be sustainable. Changes in agricultural management such as changing the planting date of wheat to coincide with changing rainfall patterns in Sardinia or mulching of tomatoes in Tunisia can be effective at reducing crop losses. PMID:26187862

  3. Impacts of varying agricultural intensification on crop yield and groundwater resources: comparison of the North China Plain and US High Plains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pei, Hongwei; Scanlon, Bridget R.; Shen, Yanjun; Reedy, Robert C.; Long, Di; Liu, Changming

    2015-04-01

    Agricultural intensification is often considered the primary approach to meet rising food demand. Here we compare impacts of intensive cultivation on crop yield in the North China Plain (NCP) with less intensive cultivation in the US High Plains (USHP) and associated effects on water resources using spatial datasets. Average crop yield during the past decade from intensive double cropping of wheat and corn in the NCP was only 15% higher than the yield from less intensive single cropping of corn in the USHP, although nitrogen fertilizer application and percent of cropland that was irrigated were both ˜2 times greater in the NCP than in the USHP. Irrigation and fertilization in both regions have depleted groundwater storage and resulted in widespread groundwater nitrate contamination. The limited response to intensive management in the NCP is attributed in part to the two month shorter growing season for corn to accommodate winter wheat than that for corn in the USHP. Previous field and modeling studies of crop yield in the NCP highlight over application of N and water resulting in low nitrogen and water use efficiencies and indicate that cultivars, plant densities, soil fertility and other factors had a much greater impact on crop yields over the past few decades. The NCP-USHP comparison along with previous field and modeling studies underscores the need to weigh the yield returns from intensive management relative to the negative impacts on water resources. Future crop management should consider the many factors that contribute to yield along with optimal fertilization and irrigation to further increase crop yields while reducing adverse impacts on water resources.

  4. The Risks and Benefits of Genetically Modified Crops: A Multidisciplinary Perspective

    OpenAIRE

    Max Troell; Robert Tinch; Ernesto Ráez-Luna; Allyson Quinlan; Jon Erickson; Lisa Deutsch; Saul Cunningham; Peterson, Garry D.; Peter Woodbury; Scot Zens

    2000-01-01

    The benefits and risks of any particular GM crop depend on the interactions of its ecological functions and natural history with the agroecosystem and ecosystems within which it is embedded. These evolutionary and ecological factors must be considered when assessing GM crops. We argue that the assessment of GM crops should be broadened to include alternative agricultural practices, ecosystem management, and agricultural policy. Such an assessment would be facilitated by a clearer understandin...

  5. Agriculture, Crops - CULTIVATED_AREAS_USDA_IN: Cultivated Areas in Indiana in 2004 (United States Department of Agriculture, 1:100,000, Polygon Shapefile)

    Data.gov (United States)

    NSGIC GIS Inventory (aka Ramona) — The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) area sampling frame is a delineation of all parcels of land for...

  6. Fibre crops as alternative land use for radioactively contaminated arable land

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vandenhove, H. [Belgian Nuclear Research Centre, SCK-CEN, Department of Radiation Protection Research, Radioecology Section, Boeretang 200, 2400 Mol (Belgium)]. E-mail: hvandenh@sckcen.be; Van Hees, M. [Belgian Nuclear Research Centre, SCK-CEN, Department of Radiation Protection Research, Radioecology Section, Boeretang 200, 2400 Mol (Belgium)

    2005-07-01

    The transfer of radiocaesium, one of the most important and widespread contaminants following a nuclear accident, to the fibre crops hemp (Cannabis sativa L.) and flax (Linum usitatissimum L.) as well as the distribution of radiocaesium during crop conversion were studied for sandy soil under greenhouse and lysimeters conditions. Soil parameters did not unequivoqually explain the transfer factors (TF) observed. TFs to flax stems ranged from 1.34 to 2.80 x 10{sup -3} m{sup 2} kg{sup -1}. TFs to seeds are about a factor of 4 lower. During the retting process for separating the fibres from the straw, more than 95% of the activity was removed with the retting water. For hemp, the TF to the stem was about 0.6 x 10{sup -3} m{sup 2} kg{sup -1}. For hemp, straw and fibres were mechanically separated and TF to straw was about 0.5 x 10{sup -3} m{sup 2} kg{sup -1} and to fibres 1.0 x 10{sup -3} m{sup 2} kg{sup -1}. Generally, the TFs to the useable plant parts both for hemp and flax, are low enough to allow for the production of clean end-products (fibre, seed oil, biofuel) even on heavily contaminated land. Given the considerable decontamination during retting, contamination levels in flax fibres would only exceed the exemption limits for fibre use after production in extreme contamination scenarios (>12 300 kBq m{sup -2}). Since hemp fibres are mechanically separated, use of hemp fibres is more restricted (contamination <740 kBq m{sup -2}). Use of stems as biofuel is restricted to areas with contamination levels of <250 and 1050 kBq m{sup -2} for flax and hemp, respectively. Use of seeds for edible oil production and flour is possible almost without restriction for flax but due to the high TFs to seed observed for hemp (up to 3 x 10{sup -3} m{sup 2} kg{sup -1}) consumption of hemp seed products should be considered with care.

  7. The yield gap of major food crops in family agriculture in the tropics: Assessment and analysis through field surveys and modelling

    OpenAIRE

    Affholder, F.; Poeydebat, C.; Corbeels, M; Scopel, E.; Tittonell, P.A.

    2013-01-01

    Yield gaps of major food crops are wide under rainfed family agriculture in the tropics. Their magnitude and causes vary substantially across agro-ecological, demographic and market situations. Methods to assess yield gaps should cope with spatio-temporal variability of bio-physical conditions, management practices, and data scarcity under smallholder conditions. Particularly challenging is to determine the most relevant methods for estimating potential (Yp) and water-limited (Yw) yields agai...

  8. Virginia Tech GIS & Remote Sensing 2014 Research Symposium - Converging Surface Water Distributions in US Cities and Agriculture Dr. Meredith Steele, Assistant Professor, Crop & Soil Environmental Sciences

    OpenAIRE

    Steele, Meredith

    2014-01-01

    Converging Surface Water Distributions in US Cities and Agriculture Dr. Meredith Steele, Assistant Professor, Crop & Soil Environmental Sciences The annual 2014 Virginia Tech GIS and Remote Sensing Research Symposium provides a venue to share information about recent advances in geographic information systems and remote sensing applications and research. The Symposium focuses on interaction among participants and the sharing of data, applications, and techniques. It includes both presentation...

  9. Climate Change, farm level adaption measures and Impacts on Crop productivity and market participation: Implications for sustainable synergy between African and European Agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Olarinde, Luke O.; Adepoju, Adebusola A.; Jabaru, Muritala O.

    2014-01-01

    It is widely known that climate change and agriculture are interrelated process, both of which take place on a global scale. In effect, crop and animal farming, fisheries, forestry, with the resultant access to food and fibre in many continents and regions of the world are projected to be severely compromised by climate variability and change. Several strategies aimed at reducing climate variability induced hazards abound. These include cultural and conventional food and farming systems to cl...

  10. The Risks and Benefits of Genetically Modified Crops: A Multidisciplinary Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Max Troell

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available The benefits and risks of any particular GM crop depend on the interactions of its ecological functions and natural history with the agroecosystem and ecosystems within which it is embedded. These evolutionary and ecological factors must be considered when assessing GM crops. We argue that the assessment of GM crops should be broadened to include alternative agricultural practices, ecosystem management, and agricultural policy. Such an assessment would be facilitated by a clearer understanding of the indirect costs of agriculture and the ecological services that support it. The benefits of GM crops should be compared to those of other means of agricultural intensification such as organic farming, integrated pest management, and agricultural policy reform. A gradual and cautious approach to the use of GM crops that relies on a truly comprehensive risk assessment could allow people to reap substantial benefits from GM crops while mitigating their serious risks.

  11. Anatomy of a local-scale drought: Application of assimilated remote sensing products, crop model, and statistical methods to an agricultural drought study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, Ashok K.; Ines, Amor V. M.; Das, Narendra N.; Prakash Khedun, C.; Singh, Vijay P.; Sivakumar, Bellie; Hansen, James W.

    2015-07-01

    Drought is of global concern for society but it originates as a local problem. It has a significant impact on water quantity and quality and influences food, water, and energy security. The consequences of drought vary in space and time, from the local scale (e.g. county level) to regional scale (e.g. state or country level) to global scale. Within the regional scale, there are multiple socio-economic impacts (i.e., agriculture, drinking water supply, and stream health) occurring individually or in combination at local scales, either in clusters or scattered. Even though the application of aggregated drought information at the regional level has been useful in drought management, the latter can be further improved by evaluating the structure and evolution of a drought at the local scale. This study addresses a local-scale agricultural drought anatomy in Story County in Iowa, USA. This complex problem was evaluated using assimilated AMSR-E soil moisture and MODIS-LAI data into a crop model to generate surface and sub-surface drought indices to explore the anatomy of an agricultural drought. Quantification of moisture supply in the root zone remains a gray area in research community, this challenge can be partly overcome by incorporating assimilation of soil moisture and leaf area index into crop modeling framework for agricultural drought quantification, as it performs better in simulating crop yield. It was noted that the persistence of subsurface droughts is in general higher than surface droughts, which can potentially improve forecast accuracy. It was found that both surface and subsurface droughts have an impact on crop yields, albeit with different magnitudes, however, the total water available in the soil profile seemed to have a greater impact on the yield. Further, agricultural drought should not be treated equal for all crops, and it should be calculated based on the root zone depth rather than a fixed soil layer depth. We envisaged that the results of

  12. Activities of clean up committee of Atomic Energy Society of Japan. Actual soil washing tests for agriculture and rice crop tests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Clean up committee of Atomic Society of Japan has several kinds of activities for remediation of cesium contaminated soil in Fukushima prefecture in order to return to the native village, for example, advance of recovery of environments in Fukushima prefecture, making catalogue of various kind of decontamination technique, actual soil washing tests for agriculture and rice crop tests, Q and A for temporary storage for contaminated soil and materials. This paper outlines actual soil washing tests for agriculture and rice crop tests in Fukushima prefecture. We tested the actual soil washing method 'Ara-kaki' using water for rice fields. Once of 'Ara-kaki' decreased half of the radioactivity in rice field. Twice of 'Ara-kaki' decreased s quarter of the radioactivity there last year. This year, rice crop tests have been done in order to investigate the effect of dispersing zeolite and fertilizing in rice field of Fukushima prefecture. Amount of zeolite and fertilizer as parameter are changed to rice field. The results of the rice crop tests will be presented. (author)

  13. Effects of agriculture crop residue burning on aerosol properties and long-range transport over northern India: A study using satellite data and model simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vijayakumar, K.; Safai, P. D.; Devara, P. C. S.; Rao, S. Vijaya Bhaskara; Jayasankar, C. K.

    2016-09-01

    Agriculture crop residue burning in the tropics is a major source of the global atmospheric aerosols and monitoring their long-range transport is an important element in climate change studies. In this paper, we study the effects of agriculture crop residue burning on aerosol properties and long-range transport over northern India during a smoke event that occurred between 09 and 17 November 2013, with the help of satellite measurements and model simulation data. Satellite data observations on aerosol properties suggested transport of particles from agriculture crop residue burning in Indo-Gangetic Plains (IGP) over large regions. Additionally, ECMWF winds at 850 hPa have been used to trace the source, path and spatial extent of smoke events. Most of the smoke aerosols, during the study period, travel from a west-to-east pathway from the source-to-sink region. Furthermore, aerosol vertical profiles from CALIPSO show a layer of thick smoke extending from surface to an altitude of about 3 km. Smoke aerosols emitted from biomass burning activity from Punjab have been found to be a major contributor to the deterioration of local air quality over the NE Indian region due to their long range transport.

  14. Tracing organic and inorganic pollution sources of agricultural crops and water resources in Güzelhisar Basin of the Aegean Region - Turkey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czarnecki, Sezin; Colak Esetlili, Bihter; Esetlili, Tolga; Tepecik, Mahmut; Anac, Dilek; Düring, Rolf-Alexander

    2014-05-01

    The study area Güzelhisar Basin is 6 km far from the city Aliaga, Aegean Region in Turkey which represents a rather industrialized area having five large iron and steel factories, but also areas of agriculture. Steel industry in Aliaga is causing metal pollution. Around Güzelhisar Basin and nearby, the dominant crop fields are cotton, maize, vegetables, olive trees and vineyards. Güzelhisar stream and dam water is used for irrigation of the agricultural land. Due to contamination from metal industry in Aliaga, organic farming is not allowed in this region. Industrial activities in the region present a threat on sustainable agriculture. The region is a multi-impacted area in terms of several pollutant sources affecting soil and water quality. The overall objective of the project is to trace back plant nutrients (N, P, K, Ca, Mg, Na, Fe, Mn, Zn, Cu, and B), hazardous substances (i. e. persistent organic pollutants), radionuclides (40K, 232Th, 226Ra/238U), and metal contents (As, Cd, Cr, Co, Cu, Hg, Mn, Ni, Pb, and Zn) by examining the soils, agricultural crops and natural plants from Güzelhisar Basin and water and sediments from Güzelhisar stream and dam. Spatial distribution of pollution will be evaluated by regionalization methods. For this, an advanced analytical methodology will be applied which provides an understanding of sources and occurrence of the respective substances of concern. An innovative multi-tracer approach comprising organic and inorganic marker substances, will identify and quantitatively assess sources and their impact on water pollution and the pollutant pathways in this agricultural crop production system.

  15. Bioenergy: Agricultural Crop Residues

    Science.gov (United States)

    The increasing cost of fossil fuels especially natural gas and petroleum as well as a desire to curtail greenhouse gas emissions are driving the expansion of bioenergy. Plant biomass (woody, grain and nongrain) is a potential energy source. Prior to the Industrial Revolution, plant biomass was a maj...

  16. Identifying the spatial and temporal variability of economic opportunity costs to promote the adoption of alternative land uses in grain growing agricultural areas: an Australian example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyle, G; Bryan, B A; Ostendorf, B

    2015-05-15

    Grain growers face many future challenges requiring them to adapt their land uses to changing economic, social and environmental conditions. To understand where to make on ground changes without significant negative financial repercussions, high resolution information on income generation over time is required. We propose a methodology which utilises high resolution yield data collected with precision agriculture (PA) technology, gross margin financial analysis and a temporal standardisation technique to highlight the spatial and temporal consistency of farm income. On three neighbouring farms in Western Australia, we found non-linear relationships between income and area. Spatio-temporal analysis on one farm over varying seasons found that between 37 and 49% (1082-1433ha) of cropping area consistently produced above the selected income thresholds and 43-32% (936-1257ha) regularly produced below selected thresholds. Around 20% of area showed inconsistent temporal variation in income generation. Income estimated from these areas represents the income forgone if a land use change is undertaken (the economic opportunity cost) and the average costs varied spatially from $190±114/ha to $560±108/ha depending on what scenario was chosen. The interaction over space and time showed the clustering of areas with similar values at a resolution where growers make input decisions. This new evidence suggests that farm area could be managed with two strategies: (a) one that maximises grain output using PA management in temporally stable areas which generate moderate to high income returns and (b) one that proposes land use change in low and inconsistent income returning areas where the financial returns from an alternative land use may be comparable. The adoption of these strategies can help growers meet the demand for agricultural output and offer income diversity and adaptive capacity to deal with the future challenges to agricultural production. PMID:25836353

  17. Changes of water demand - possible adaptation of agricultural crops and management options to improve water use efficiency in the Marchfeld area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thaler, S.; Eitzinger, J.; Dubrovsky, M.; Trnka, M.

    2009-04-01

    The main objective of this study was to determine the vulnerability of current agricultural cropping systems in the Marchfeld region to climate change. The investigation area Marchfeld is located in the north-eastern (NE) part of Austria and is characterized by a semi-arid climate with low annual rainfall. It is one of the driest regions in the country, but also one of the main field crop production areas. The soil conditions in Marchfeld demonstrate a significant spatial variability, which include soils with low to moderate water-storage capacities. Higher temperatures in the next decades imply higher evaporation and consequently higher water demand for the crops. The phenological development rates of the cultivars will accelerate and an increase of heat stress as well as drought stress can be expected. These points influence intense the water balance and subsequently the yield of the crops in the investigation area. In order to improve water use efficiency under those changing conditions, a shift of average sowing dates and an adjustment of tillage were analyzed. The DSSAT cropping system model was applied for winter wheat and spring barley to assess potential yield under climate scenarios for NE Austria. The scenarios were carried out with ECHAM5, HadCM3 and NCAR PCM global circulation models (GCMs) for present conditions (reference period 1961-1990) and 2035's (2021-2050), based on SRES-A1B emission scenarios. Yield model simulations were done for all defined scenarios (climate, management, crop) and different soil classes. The simulations contain the CO2 fertilizing effect, rain fed farming, adapted sowing date and contemporary crops without consideration of potential profit cuts caused by pest or diseases. Simulation results indicate that climate change will force a delay of the sowing date for winter wheat of maximal 14 days in October. In case of spring barley, climate change allows an earlier sowing date in spring (up to 14 days). Both crops show a

  18. Evaluating the impact of economic agricultural policies during the reform era for major crops and crop rotations in Egypt: a policy analysis matrix approach

    OpenAIRE

    El-Kholei, Ahmed Mohammed Salah

    2003-01-01

    In 1986, Egypt implemented a succession of comprehensive economic reforms both in the agriculture sector and more generally such as the Economic Reform and Structural Adjustment Program (ERSAP) of 1991. Since then, the agricultural sector has been gradually transformed from one characterised by central planning and governmental controls to one that is more free market oriented. This study employs the Policy Analysis Matrix technique to evaluate the impacts of reform policies on eleven maj...

  19. Recycling of solid wastes in Mexico City in livestock and agricultural production systems as a sustainable alternative

    OpenAIRE

    H. Losada; Cortes, J; Rivera, J.; Vargas, J.

    2011-01-01

    The use of solid organic wastes (manure and  fruit and vegetable refusals) as a way to recycle rubbish from peri-urban areas for the production of crops for local consumption, has been designated by some researchers as an alternate method to partially reduce city waste disposal problems as well as to generate employment and promote the consumption of local products. This model production has also been suggested as a closed system ideally suited for urban environments in order to reduce the us...

  20. Nitrous oxide and N-leaching losses from agricultural soil: Influence of crop residue particle size, quality and placement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ambus, P.; Jensen, E.S.; Robertson, G.P.

    2001-01-01

    Incorporation of crop residues provides a source of readily available C and N, and previous works indicate that farming strategies where crop residues are used for soil fertility purposes may lead to increased emissions of N2O. Information on the importance of different residue management on the ...

  1. Insect pollinated crops, insect pollinators and US agriculture: trend analysis of aggregate data for the period 1992-2009.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas W Calderone

    Full Text Available In the US, the cultivated area (hectares and production (tonnes of crops that require or benefit from insect pollination (directly dependent crops: apples, almonds, blueberries, cucurbits, etc. increased from 1992, the first year in this study, through 1999 and continued near those levels through 2009; aggregate yield (tonnes/hectare remained unchanged. The value of directly dependent crops attributed to all insect pollination (2009 USD decreased from $14.29 billion in 1996, the first year for value data in this study, to $10.69 billion in 2001, but increased thereafter, reaching $15.12 billion by 2009. The values attributed to honey bees and non-Apis pollinators followed similar patterns, reaching $11.68 billion and $3.44 billion, respectively, by 2009. The cultivated area of crops grown from seeds resulting from insect pollination (indirectly dependent crops: legume hays, carrots, onions, etc. was stable from 1992 through 1999, but has since declined. Production of those crops also declined, albeit not as rapidly as the decline in cultivated area; this asymmetry was due to increases in aggregate yield. The value of indirectly dependent crops attributed to insect pollination declined from $15.45 billion in 1996 to $12.00 billion in 2004, but has since trended upward. The value of indirectly dependent crops attributed to honey bees and non-Apis pollinators, exclusive of alfalfa leafcutter bees, has declined since 1996 to $5.39 billion and $1.15 billion, respectively in 2009. The value of alfalfa hay attributed to alfalfa leafcutter bees ranged between $4.99 and $7.04 billion. Trend analysis demonstrates that US producers have a continued and significant need for insect pollinators and that a diminution in managed or wild pollinator populations could seriously threaten the continued production of insect pollinated crops and crops grown from seeds resulting from insect pollination.

  2. A cost-effective and practical polybenzanthrone-based fluorescent sensor for efficient determination of palladium (II) ion and its application in agricultural crops and environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Graphical abstract: -- Highlights: •PBA was facilely electrosynthesized in the binary solvent system containing of acetonitrile and boron trifluoride diethyl etherate. •“On–off” type fluorescent sensor based on this polymer for highly selective, sensitive, and practical detection of Pd2+ was designed. •The possible mechanism between Pd2+ and PBA has been discussed and TEM preliminary proved the proposed mechanism. •This fluorescent CP-based sensor has been used to practically detect Pd2+ in agricultural crops and environment samples with satisfactory results. -- Abstract: A highly selective and sensitive fluorescent chemosensor suitable for practical measurement of palladium ion (Pd2+) in agricultural crops and environment samples has been successfully fabricated using polybenzanthrone (PBA). PBA was facilely electrosynthesized in the mixed electrolyte of acetonitrile and boron trifluoride diethyl etherate. The fluorescence intensity of PBA showed a linear response to Pd2+ in the concentration range of 5 nM–0.12 mM with a detection limit of 0.277 nM and quantification limit of 0.925 nM. Different compounds existing in agricultural crops and environment such as common metal ions, anions, natural amino acids, carbohydrates, and organic acids were used to examine the selectivity of the as-fabricated sensor, and no obvious fluorescence change could be observed in these interferents and their mixtures. A possible mechanism was proposed that the coordination of PBA and Pd2+ enhance the aggregation of polymer chains, which led to a significant quenching of PBA emission, and this was further confirmed by absorption spectra monitoring and transmission electron microscopy. The excellent performance of the proposed sensor and satisfactory results of the Pd2+ determination in practical samples suggested that the PBA-based fluorescent sensor for the determination of Pd2+ will be a good candidate for application in agriculture and environment

  3. A cost-effective and practical polybenzanthrone-based fluorescent sensor for efficient determination of palladium (II) ion and its application in agricultural crops and environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Ge [Jiangxi Key Laboratory of Organic Chemistry, Jiangxi Science and Technology Normal University, Nanchang 330013 (China); Wen, Yangping [Key Laboratory of Crop Physiology, Ecology and Genetic Breeding, Ministry of Education, and Key Laboratory of Physiology, Ecology and Cultivation of Double Cropping Rice, Ministry of Agriculture, Jiangxi Agricultural University, Nanchang 330045 (China); Guo, Chaoqun [Jiangxi Key Laboratory of Organic Chemistry, Jiangxi Science and Technology Normal University, Nanchang 330013 (China); Xu, Jingkun, E-mail: xujingkun@tsinghua.org.cn [Jiangxi Key Laboratory of Organic Chemistry, Jiangxi Science and Technology Normal University, Nanchang 330013 (China); Lu, Baoyang; Duan, Xuemin [Jiangxi Key Laboratory of Organic Chemistry, Jiangxi Science and Technology Normal University, Nanchang 330013 (China); He, Haohua; Yang, Jun [Key Laboratory of Crop Physiology, Ecology and Genetic Breeding, Ministry of Education, and Key Laboratory of Physiology, Ecology and Cultivation of Double Cropping Rice, Ministry of Agriculture, Jiangxi Agricultural University, Nanchang 330045 (China)

    2013-12-17

    Graphical abstract: -- Highlights: •PBA was facilely electrosynthesized in the binary solvent system containing of acetonitrile and boron trifluoride diethyl etherate. •“On–off” type fluorescent sensor based on this polymer for highly selective, sensitive, and practical detection of Pd{sup 2+} was designed. •The possible mechanism between Pd{sup 2+} and PBA has been discussed and TEM preliminary proved the proposed mechanism. •This fluorescent CP-based sensor has been used to practically detect Pd{sup 2+} in agricultural crops and environment samples with satisfactory results. -- Abstract: A highly selective and sensitive fluorescent chemosensor suitable for practical measurement of palladium ion (Pd{sup 2+}) in agricultural crops and environment samples has been successfully fabricated using polybenzanthrone (PBA). PBA was facilely electrosynthesized in the mixed electrolyte of acetonitrile and boron trifluoride diethyl etherate. The fluorescence intensity of PBA showed a linear response to Pd{sup 2+} in the concentration range of 5 nM–0.12 mM with a detection limit of 0.277 nM and quantification limit of 0.925 nM. Different compounds existing in agricultural crops and environment such as common metal ions, anions, natural amino acids, carbohydrates, and organic acids were used to examine the selectivity of the as-fabricated sensor, and no obvious fluorescence change could be observed in these interferents and their mixtures. A possible mechanism was proposed that the coordination of PBA and Pd{sup 2+} enhance the aggregation of polymer chains, which led to a significant quenching of PBA emission, and this was further confirmed by absorption spectra monitoring and transmission electron microscopy. The excellent performance of the proposed sensor and satisfactory results of the Pd{sup 2+} determination in practical samples suggested that the PBA-based fluorescent sensor for the determination of Pd{sup 2+} will be a good candidate for application in

  4. "More drop per crop" when moving from gravitational to drip irrigated agriculture? Experiences from a North Moroccan case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feltz, N.; Gaspart, F.; Vanclooster, M.

    2015-12-01

    In order to save agricultural water, the famous FAO's "more crop per drop" has been taken literally in many arid or semi-arid places around the world and policies that aim improving "efficiencies" (irrigation efficiency…) have been implemented, often leading to the promotion of water saving technologies. In 1865, studying coal consumption, W.S. Jevons highlighted that improving coal use efficiency could, as a paradox, lead to higher global coal use. Many economists later extended this idea to resource saving technologies in general, showing that, due to the "rebound effect", the adoption of more efficient technologies, in terms of use of resources, could lead to a higher global consumption of this resource if this adoption didn't go with adjustment measures. Regarding these considerations, the emerging question is to which extent water saving technologies (i.e. that aim improving water related efficiencies) are appropriate to save water at large scale. Our study addresses this question through the analysis of the conversion from surface to drip irrigation in Triffa's irrigated perimeter (Morocco). We aim addressing this question using the detailed analysis of two data sets. First, available data were collected for every farm within the study area from the local administrations. Second, interviews were conducted with farmers to complete the dataset and to characterize their behavior. This allowed assessing water related efficiencies at farm scale. Subsequently, models were implemented to link efficiencies with general attributes and thereby identify the main drivers of water related efficiencies in the study area. Finally, these models were used to upscale farm-scale assessment to the perimeter scale. Our results show that, under current conditions, moving from surface to drip irrigation leads to higher global water withdrawal. However, the aforementioned "rebound effect" does not allow explaining the higher pressure because of contextual specificities. Deeper

  5. Economic Potential for Agriculture Water-Saving Using Alternative Irrigation Techniques

    OpenAIRE

    Vaux, Henry James Jr.; Marsh, Albert W

    1980-01-01

    More efficient use of water by irrigated agriculture in California will likely be necessary if the significant economic role played by this industry is to be maintained in the future. Necessary economic data and methodologies are developed to assess the extent to which water savings can be realized through widespread adoption of water-saving irrigation technologies. Special technologies substitute energy for water. An assessment of the methods developed was performed on the agricultural secto...

  6. ALTERNATIVE ITALIAN AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVE SYSTEMS IN THE CHANGING EU FOOD SYSTEM

    OpenAIRE

    Russo, Carlo; Weatherspoon, Dave D.; Peterson, H. Christopher

    2000-01-01

    The European food system is undergoing significant change driven both by global competitive forces and local conditions. Market globalization and technological innovation are interacting with the reform of EU's agricultural policies (CAP) and a renewed interest by the European society in the social and environmental functions of agriculture. These factors have created a new and challenging economic environment both for farmers and the food industry across Europe (Tarditi, 1997).

  7. Nitrous oxide and methane emissions from optimized and alternative cereal cropping systems on the North China Plain: A two-year field study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gao, Bing [College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Ju, Xiaotang, E-mail: juxt@cau.edu.cn [College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Su, Fang; Meng, Qingfeng [College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Oenema, Oene [Wageningen University and Research, Alterra, Wageningen (Netherlands); Christie, Peter [College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Agri-Environment Branch, Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute, Belfast BT9 5PX (United Kingdom); Chen, Xinping; Zhang, Fusuo [College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China)

    2014-02-01

    The impacts of different crop rotation systems with their corresponding management practices on grain yield, greenhouse gas emissions, and fertilizer nitrogen (N) and irrigation water use efficiencies are not well documented. This holds especially for the North China Plain which provides the staple food for hundreds of millions of people and where groundwater resources are polluted with nitrate and depleted through irrigation. Here, we report on fertilizer N and irrigation water use, grain yields, and nitrous oxide (N{sub 2}O) and methane (CH{sub 4}) emissions of conventional and optimized winter wheat–summer maize double-cropping systems, and of three alternative cropping systems, namely a winter wheat–summer maize (or soybean)–spring maize system, with three harvests in two years; and a single spring maize system with one crop per year. The results of this two-year study show that the optimized double-cropping system led to a significant increase in grain yields and a significant decrease in fertilizer N use and net greenhouse gas intensity, but the net greenhouse gas N{sub 2}O emissions plus CH{sub 4} uptake and the use of irrigation water did not decrease relative to the conventional system. Compared to the conventional system the net greenhouse gas emissions, net greenhouse gas intensity and use of fertilizer N and irrigation water decreased in the three alternative cropping systems, but at the cost of grain yields except in the winter wheat–summer maize–spring maize system. Net uptake of CH{sub 4} by the soil was little affected by cropping system. Average N{sub 2}O emission factors were only 0.17% for winter wheat and 0.53% for maize. In conclusion, the winter wheat–summer maize–spring maize system has considerable potential to decrease water and N use and decrease N{sub 2}O emissions while maintaining high grain yields and sustainable use of groundwater. - Highlights: • Yields, resource use efficiency and N{sub 2}O + CH{sub 4} emission

  8. Impacts of Fertilization Alternatives and Crop Straw Incorporation on N2O Emissions from a Spring Maize Field in Northeastern China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YANG Li; WANG Li-gang; LI Hu; QIU Jian-jun; LIU Hui-ying

    2014-01-01

    Spring maize is one of the most popular crops planted in northeastern China. The cropping systems involving spring maize have been maintaining high production through intensive management practices. However, the high rates of nitrogen (N) fertilizers application could have introduced a great amount of nitrous oxide (N2O) into the atmosphere. It is crucial for sustaining the maize production systems to reduce N2O emissions meanwhile maintaining the optimum yields by adopting alternative farming management practices. The goal of this study was to evaluate effects of alternative fertilization and crop residue management practices on N2O emission as well as crop yield for a typical maize ifeld in northeastern China. Field experiments were conducted during the 2010-2011 maize growing seasons (from early May to late September) in Liaoning Province, northeastern China. N2O lfuxes were measured at the ifeld plots with six different treatments including no N fertilizer use (CK), farmers’ conventional N fertilizer application rate (FP), reduced N fertilizer rate (OPT), reduced N fertilizer rate combined with crop straw amendment (OPTS), slow-release N fertilizer (CRF), and reduced N fertilizer rate combined with nitriifcation inhibitor (OPT+DCD). The static chamber method combined with gas chromatography technique was employed to conduct the measurements of N2O lfuxes. The ifeld data showed that N2O emissions varied across the treatments. During the maize growing season in 2010, the total N2O emissions under the treatments of CK, FP, OPT, OPTS, and CRF were 0.63, 1.11, 1.03, 1.26, and 0.98 kg N ha-1, respectively. The seasonal cumulative N2O emissions were 0.54, 1.07, 0.96, 1.12, and 0.84 kg N ha-1, respectively, under CK, FP, OPT, OPTS, and OPT+DCD in 2011. In comparison with FP, CRF or OPT+DCD reduced the N2O emissions by 12 or 21%, respectively, while the crop yields remained unchanged. The results indicate that the reduction of N-fertilizer application rate in

  9. Alternative cultivation systems for energy crops. Exploitation of phosphor and nitrogen in the cultivation of mixed fruits with leguminous plants under the conditions of drought stress; Alternative Anbausysteme fuer Energiepflanzen. Phosphor- und Stickstoffausnutzung im Mischfruchtanbau mit Leguminosen unter Trockenstressbedingungen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Busch, Stefanie; Eichler-Loebermann, Bettina [Rostock Univ. (Germany). Professur Pflanzenbau

    2013-10-01

    Alternative cropping systems with an efficient utilization of resources are particularly interesting for energy cropping. The P- and N- uptake of phosphorus (P) and nitrogen (N) of maize and sorghum (here called ''energy crops'') intercropped with legumes (substitutive, 50:50) under drought conditions were investigated in a eight week pot experiment. Yield, P- and N- uptake of all species and mixtures were significantly lower under drought conditions than when well watered. The yield and the P-uptake of the mixtures was lower than of the sole cropped energy crops when well watered, but comparable under water deficit with exception of the sorghum mixtures, which reached a lower yield than sole sorghum. Despite the lower N-fertilization the N-uptake of the mixtures was comparable to the sole cropped maize or sorghum when well watered, but under drought N uptake of the mixtures was decreased in comparison to sole cropping. Under drought conditions the N-uptake of maize and sorghum plants in mixtures was not decreased, while the N-uptake of the legumes decreased in comparison to the well watered treatment. This may be an evidence for the benefit of the non-legumes in the investigated intercropping system under drought conditions. (orig.)

  10. Nitrous Oxide Emission and Denitrifier Abundance in Two Agricultural Soils Amended with Crop Residues and Urea in the North China Plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Haiyang; Liu, Yuan; Bai, Xueying; Ma, Dongyun; Zhu, Yunji; Wang, Chenyang; Guo, Tiancai

    2016-01-01

    The application of crop residues combined with Nitrogen (N) fertilizer has been broadly adopted in China. Crop residue amendments can provide readily available C and N, as well as other nutrients to agricultural soils, but also intensify the N fixation, further affecting N2O emissions. N2O pulses are obviously driven by rainfall, irrigation and fertilization. Fertilization before rainfall or followed by flooding irrigation is a general management practice for a wheat-maize rotation in the North China Plain. Yet, little is known on the impacts of crop residues combined with N fertilizer application on N2O emission under high soil moisture content. A laboratory incubation experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of two crop residue amendments (maize and wheat), individually or in combination with N fertilizer, on N2O emissions and denitrifier abundance in two main agricultural soils (one is an alluvial soil, pH 8.55, belongs to Ochri-Aquic Cambosols, OAC, the other is a lime concretion black soil, pH 6.61, belongs to Hapli-Aquic Vertosols, HAV) under 80% WFPS (the water filled pore space) in the North China Plain. Each type soil contains seven treatments: a control with no N fertilizer application (CK, N0), 200 kg N ha-1 (N200), 250 kg N ha-1 (N250), maize residue plus N200 (MN200), maize residue plus N250 (MN250), wheat residue plus N200 (WN200) and wheat residue plus N250 (WN250). Results showed that, in the HAV soil, MN250 and WN250 increased the cumulative N2O emissions by 60% and 30% compared with N250 treatment, respectively, but MN200 and WN200 decreased the cumulative N2O emissions by 20% and 50% compared with N200. In the OAC soil, compared with N200 or N250, WN200 and WN250 increased the cumulative N2O emission by 40%-50%, but MN200 and MN250 decreased the cumulative N2O emission by 10%-20%. Compared with CK, addition of crop residue or N fertilizer resulted in significant increases in N2O emissions in both soils. The cumulative N2O emissions

  11. Nitrous Oxide Emission and Denitrifier Abundance in Two Agricultural Soils Amended with Crop Residues and Urea in the North China Plain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianmin Gao

    Full Text Available The application of crop residues combined with Nitrogen (N fertilizer has been broadly adopted in China. Crop residue amendments can provide readily available C and N, as well as other nutrients to agricultural soils, but also intensify the N fixation, further affecting N2O emissions. N2O pulses are obviously driven by rainfall, irrigation and fertilization. Fertilization before rainfall or followed by flooding irrigation is a general management practice for a wheat-maize rotation in the North China Plain. Yet, little is known on the impacts of crop residues combined with N fertilizer application on N2O emission under high soil moisture content. A laboratory incubation experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of two crop residue amendments (maize and wheat, individually or in combination with N fertilizer, on N2O emissions and denitrifier abundance in two main agricultural soils (one is an alluvial soil, pH 8.55, belongs to Ochri-Aquic Cambosols, OAC, the other is a lime concretion black soil, pH 6.61, belongs to Hapli-Aquic Vertosols, HAV under 80% WFPS (the water filled pore space in the North China Plain. Each type soil contains seven treatments: a control with no N fertilizer application (CK, N0, 200 kg N ha-1 (N200, 250 kg N ha-1 (N250, maize residue plus N200 (MN200, maize residue plus N250 (MN250, wheat residue plus N200 (WN200 and wheat residue plus N250 (WN250. Results showed that, in the HAV soil, MN250 and WN250 increased the cumulative N2O emissions by 60% and 30% compared with N250 treatment, respectively, but MN200 and WN200 decreased the cumulative N2O emissions by 20% and 50% compared with N200. In the OAC soil, compared with N200 or N250, WN200 and WN250 increased the cumulative N2O emission by 40%-50%, but MN200 and MN250 decreased the cumulative N2O emission by 10%-20%. Compared with CK, addition of crop residue or N fertilizer resulted in significant increases in N2O emissions in both soils. The cumulative N2O

  12. Nitrous oxide and N-leaching losses from agricultural soil: Influence of crop residue particle size, quality and placement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ambus, P.; Jensen, E.S.; Robertson, G.P.

    2001-01-01

    Incorporation of crop residues provides a source of readily available C and N, and previous works indicate that farming strategies where crop residues are used for soil fertility purposes may lead to increased emissions of N2O. Information on the importance of different residue management on the...... potential for N2O emissions, however, is missing. The objectives of this work were to determine the short-term effects of crop residue particle size and spatial distribution on soil-atmosphere fluxes of N2O. Implications for leaching losses of inorganic N were also assessed. The work included an experiment...... physical protection of the crop residue material against microbial attack. Leaching of N tended to be reduced about 40 % with barley and 20 % with pea, but the numbers were not significantly different from residue-free soil, which leached 4.7-4.9 g N m(-2). When wheat and alfalfa residues were mixed into...

  13. Agricultural methanization and use of energetic crops in co-digestion. Benefits/drawbacks and optimization. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This study aims at analysing benefits and drawbacks related to the use of energetic crops in co-digestion plants, these benefits and drawbacks being assessed from different points of view: energy production, economics, and environmental aspects, greenhouse gas emissions, concurrence with food production. The study is based on a literature survey which led to the building up of a database, on simulations of the use of different selected crops, and on a multi-criteria analysis

  14. A Review of the Applications of Chitin and Its Derivatives in Agriculture to Modify Plant-Microbial Interactions and Improve Crop Yields

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russell G. Sharp

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available In recent decades, a greater knowledge of chitin chemistry, and the increased availability of chitin-containing waste materials from the seafood industry, have led to the testing and development of chitin-containing products for a wide variety of applications in the agriculture industry. A number of modes of action have been proposed for how chitin and its derivatives can improve crop yield. In addition to direct effects on plant nutrition and plant growth stimulation, chitin-derived products have also been shown to be toxic to plant pests and pathogens, induce plant defenses and stimulate the growth and activity of beneficial microbes. A repeating theme of the published studies is that chitin-based treatments augment and amplify the action of beneficial chitinolytic microbes. This article reviews the evidence for claims that chitin-based products can improve crop yields and the current understanding of the modes of action with a focus on plant-microbe interactions.

  15. Traditional crop for biodiesel. Castor oil could be an alternative, but it is a problematic additive; Traditionspflanze fuer Biodiesel. Rizinusoel koennte eine Alternative sein - problematisch als Beimischung

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ristau, Oliver

    2012-11-01

    As the demand for energy crops like soy is increasing, so are prices. The castor-oil plant may soon become one of these crops. An Israeli-Brazilian cooperation project is to raise the yields of this old culture plant and make it profitable.

  16. Effects of crop rotation and management system on water-extractable organic matter concentration, structure, and bioavailability in a chernozemic agricultural soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Na; Wilson, Henry F; Saiers, James E; Entz, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Water-extractable organic matter (WEOM) in soil affects contaminant mobility and toxicity, heterotrophic production, and nutrient cycling in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. This study focuses on the influences of land use history and agricultural management practices on the water extractability of organic matter and nutrients from soils. Water-extractable organic matter was extracted from soils under different crop rotations (an annual rotation of wheat-pea/bean-wheat-flax or a perennial-based rotation of wheat-alfalfa-alfalfa-flax) and management systems (organic or conventional) and examined for its concentration, composition, and biodegradability. The results show that crop rotations including perennial legumes increased the concentration of water-extractable organic carbon (WEOC) and water-extractable organic nitrogen (WEON) and the biodegradability of WEOC in soil but depleted the quantity of water-extractable organic phosphorus (WEOP) and water-extractable reactive phosphorus. The 30-d incubation experiments showed that bioavailable WEOC varied from 12.5% in annual systems to 22% for perennial systems. The value of bioavailable WEOC was found to positively correlate with WEON concentrations and to negatively correlate with C:N ratio and the specific ultraviolet absorbance of WEOM. No significant treatment effect was present with the conventional and organic management practices, which suggested that WEOM, as the relatively labile pool in soil organic matter, is more responsive to the change in crop rotation than to mineral fertilizer application. Our results indicated that agricultural landscapes with contrasting crop rotations are likely to differentially affect rates of microbial cycling of organic matter leached to soil waters. PMID:23673753

  17. New alternatives on the control of plagues in the handling of the residuals in agricultural products

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A recount of the historical evolution of the agriculture is made in the country and the use of agricultural inputs with tendency to the mono cultivations that drove to a biological imbalance and the escalation of the plagues in the main cultivations, that which forced to the integrated handling of plagues. The strategies are described using in the control integrated as they are: the use of the adverse environmental factors to the plagues, the use of the natural enemies, the cultural practices, the use of traps, the employment of resistant varieties and measures of legal type

  18. Computing the biomass potentials for maize and two alternative energy crops, triticale and cup plant (Silphium perfoliatum L.), with the crop model BioSTAR in the region of Hannover (Germany)

    OpenAIRE

    Bauböck, Roland; Karpenstein-Machan, Marianne; Kappas, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Background Lower Saxony (Germany) has the highest installed electric capacity from biogas in Germany. Most of this electricity is generated with maize. Reasons for this are the high yields and the economic incentive. In parts of Lower Saxony, an expansion of maize cultivation has led to ecological problems and a negative image of bioenergy as such. Winter triticale and cup plant have both shown their suitability as alternative energy crops for biogas production and could help to reduce ma...

  19. Buttercup squash provides a marketable alternative to blue hubbard as a trap crop for control of striped cucumber beetles (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavanagh, Andrew F; Adler, Lynn S; Hazzard, Ruth V

    2010-12-01

    Winter squash is a vital agricultural commodity worldwide. In the Northeastern United States, the primary insect pest is the striped cucumber beetle, Acalymma vittatum F. Using a Blue Hubbard squash (Cucurbita maxima Duchesne) perimeter trap crop system can reduce insecticide use by >90% in butternut squash (C. moschata Poir), the primary winter squash grown in this region. Despite the savings in insecticide costs, growers may be reluctant to give up field space for a perimeter crop of Blue Hubbard squash, which comprises only 5% of the winter squash market in New England as compared with 19% for buttercup squash. Finding a more marketable trap crop would lower the barrier for adoption of this system. We tested eight varieties of three species of cucurbits for attractiveness to beetles relative to Blue Hubbard and butternut squash, and chose buttercup squash as the most promising replacement. We compared the effect of a buttercup border, Blue Hubbard border, or control (no border) on beetle numbers, herbivory, insecticide use, pollination, and pollen limitation in the main crop. We found that buttercup squash performed equally well as Blue Hubbard as a trap crop, with 97% reduction in total insecticide use compared with control fields. Honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) and squash bees (Peponapis pruinosa Say) were the predominant pollinators, and border treatments did not affect visitation. Hand pollination did not increase reproduction or yield, indicating that natural pollination was sufficient for full yield. This study confirms the effectiveness of perimeter trap crop systems and offers growers a more marketable trap crop for managing cucumber beetle damage. PMID:22182562

  20. From alternative Agriculture to the Food Industry, The Need for Changes in Food Policy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, Niels Heine; Nielsen, Thorkild

    1997-01-01

    have established rules and control systems for organic agriculture (the last decade). A break-through of organic food production is now taking place in some EU member states. This third change is indicated by more positive attitudes to organic products from the food industry but also by an increasing...... need for a more appropriate respons in the food policy....

  1. The Internationalization of Alternative Food Networks: Farmers' Markets, Community Gardens, and Agricultural Exchange

    OpenAIRE

    Cody, Kevin

    2015-01-01

    Focusing on various sites of an international farmer exchange program, this research examines the geographic, socioeconomic, and cultural relevance of Northern-based alternative food networks in the context of a less developed country, specifically Peru. In theory, alternative food networks (AFNs) revalorize small-scale farmers, rebuild local food systems, and strengthen ties between consumers and producers. Efforts to promote AFNs and scholarship exploring these efforts are largely confined ...

  2. Review of Alternative Management Options of Vegetable Crop Residues to Reduce Nitrate Leaching in Intensive Vegetable Rotations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Agneessens

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Vegetable crop residues take a particular position relative to arable crops due to often large amounts of biomass with a N content up to 200 kg N ha−1 left behind on the field. An important amount of vegetable crops are harvested during late autumn and despite decreasing soil temperatures during autumn, high rates of N mineralization and nitrification still occur. Vegetable crop residues may lead to considerable N losses through leaching during winter and pose a threat to meeting water quality objectives. However, at the same time vegetable crop residues are a vital link in closing the nutrient and organic matter cycle of soils. Appropriate and sustainable management is needed to harness the full potential of vegetable crop residues. Two fundamentally different crop residue management strategies to reduce N losses during winter in intensive vegetable rotations are reviewed, namely (i on-field management options and modifications to crop rotations and (ii removal of crop residues, followed by a useful and profitable application.

  3. Ten year study (1982-1991) of the water balance of unirrigated agricultural crop-rotations using weighing lysimeters at the Federal Agricultural Research Centre in Braunschweig-Voelkenrode (Germany)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ten year survey results of evapotranspiration and seepage by agricultural crops are discussed. Average annual precipitation was 615 mm. Plants evaporated 83 % and about 100 mm was seepage water. This seepage occurred only from January to June, with a maximum of 30 mm in March. The highest water consumption per month was exhibited by winter wheat and summer barley (120-130 mm) in the month of June, by potatoes (120 mm) in July and sugar beets (120 mm) in July and August. Between 30-40 % of global radiation energy was used for evaporation processes

  4. How can crop intra-specific biodiversity mitigate the vulnerability of agricultural systems to climate change? A case study on durum wheat in Southern Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monaco, Eugenia; Alfieri, Silvia Maria; Basile, Angelo; Menenti, Massimo; Bonfante, Antonello; De Lorenzi, Fracesca

    2014-05-01

    Climate evolution may lead to changes in the amount and distribution of precipitations and to reduced water availability, with constraints on the cultivation of some crops. Recently, foreseen crop responses to climate change raise a crucial question for the agricultural stakeholders: are the current production systems resilient to this change? An active debate is in progress about the definition of adaptation of agricultural systems, particularly about the integrated assessment of climate stressors, vulnerability and resilece towards the evaluation of climate impact on agricultural systems. Climate change represents a risk for rain-fed agricultural systems, where irrigations cannot compensate reductions in precipitations. The intra-specific biodiversity of crops can be a resource towards adaptation. The knowledge of the responses to environmental conditions (temperature and water availability) of different cultivars can allow to identify options for adaptation to future climate. Simulation models of water flow in the soil-plant-atmosphere system, driven by different climate scenarios, can describe present and foreseen soil water regime. The present work deals with a case-study on the adaptive capacity of durum wheat to climate change. The selected study area is a hilly region in Southern Italy (Fortore Beneventano, Campania Region). Two climate cases were studied: "reference" (1961-1990) and "future" (2021-2050). A mechanistic model of water flow in the soil-plant-atmosphere system (SWAP) was run to determine the water regime in some soil units, representative of the soil variability in the study area. From model output, the Relative Evapotranspiration Deficit (RETD) was determined as an indicator of hydrological conditions during the crop growing period for each year and climate case; and periods with higher frequencies of soil water deficits were identified. The timing of main crop development stages was calculated. The occurrence of water deficit at different

  5. Plus C'est La Meme Chose? Questioning Crop Diversification as a Response to Agricultural Deregulation in Saskatchewan, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradshaw, Ben

    2004-01-01

    In the context of declining government subsidization of agriculture, many analysts have predicted reversals in certain characteristic trends of post-1945 Western agriculture with positive implications for agroecosystem well-being. One example, investigated herein, is the suggestion that, in the absence of government safety nets, farmers will seek…

  6. Evaluation of the dose to man in relation to the behavior of tritium from irrigation water in agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A research program on the transfer of tritium from the irrigation water in the soil-plant environment provides valuable ecological information on the effects of tritium releases from nuclear installations under temperate humide and mediterranean climatic conditions. Field studies are carried out on experimental plots by spraying the crops with irrigation water contaminated with tritium on a single dose, the reference level chosen is 1 nCi/litre. The following crops are investigated: prairie, rye-grass, potato, pea, barley, carrot and sugarbeet as temperate region cultures, and vineyard, olive-tree and orange-tree as mediterranean cultures. Soil and plants samples are collected for radioassay to determine the tritium incorporation in tissue water and organic matter fractions. The tritium activity in these crops after harvest is correlated to the level of radiation dose received through human diet

  7. Remote sensing in Iowa agriculture: Identification and classification of Iowa crop lands using ERTS-1 and complimentary underflight imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahlstede, J. P.; Carlson, R. E.; Thomson, G. W. (Principal Investigator)

    1973-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. Results of the continuing analysis of ERTS-1 imagery covering Iowa during 1972 and periods during 1973 are covered. Emphasis is placed on the identification and classification of major crop types at two test sites in Iowa. Standard photointerpretive methods were used in this analysis including the direct enlargement of black and white single-band products and additive color multi-band procedures using a miniadcol system. The use of sequential coverage during the crop growing season is emphasized as a means to improve the effectiveness of ERTS-1 photointerpretations of crop land acreage estimates in Iowa. Illustrative black and white and color prints of both ERTS-1 and underflight imagery are included. In addition, forest land inventories at one test site are reported. A new method for the inventory of forest lands using ERTS-1 imagery is reported and compared with estimates obtained using earlier underflight imagery.

  8. Multiple Peril Crop Insurance

    OpenAIRE

    Edwards, William M.; Hofstrand, Donald

    2003-01-01

    Multiple Peril Crop Insurance (MPCI) is a broad-based crop insurance program regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and subsidized by the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation(FCIC). Crops eligible for MPCI coverage in Iowa include corn, sobyeans, oats, wheat, seed corn, popcorn, barley, potatoes, sweet corn, canning beans, dry beans, forages, grain sorghum, green peas, tomatoes, and nursery stocks. Not all of these crops can be insured in all counties.

  9. Effect of measures for decreasing radionuclide intake into plants-growing production on pests and diseases of agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Effects of different methods for decreasing radionuclide intakes into plants-growing production (methods of soil cultivation, effect of organic and mineral fertilizers on soils) on pests are studied on experimental crops of oats, barley, winter rye, winter wheat, pea and flax located in the Chernobyl' NPP zone of population evacuation. Crops are characterized by different levels of contamination by radioactive materials (gamma radiation background amounts to 0.06-2.3 mR/h). Dependences of pest number on doses of applying mineral and organic fertilizers are obtained. Nitrogen is the most important among mineral feeding elements

  10. Research work and demonstration of crop space-induced mutation breeding in Guangdong academy of agricultural science

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    138 entries of crop seeds, seedlings and sources of microbe, including conventional rice varieties, hybrid rice, vegetable, flower, mulberry, tea, and silkworm, were sent for space mutation. Muti-suject combining research had been conducted on the innovation of new gemplasm, breeding for new varieties and elucidating the physiological and molecular mechanism of space induced mutation. Based on the displaying platform fro crop breeding in national Agri- Tech displaying land in Guangzhou, Guangdong. Space Agri-Tech Displaying Land was being constructed large scale displaying land for space induced breeding in Guangdong will be developed in collaboration with the Provincial production management agencies. (authors)

  11. Diversified Farming Systems: An Agroecological, Systems-based Alternative to Modern Industrial Agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Claire Kremen; Alastair Iles; Christopher Bacon

    2012-01-01

    This Special Issue on Diversified Farming Systems is motivated by a desire to understand how agriculture designed according to whole systems, agroecological principles can contribute to creating a more sustainable, socially just, and secure global food system. We first define Diversified Farming Systems (DFS) as farming practices and landscapes that intentionally include functional biodiversity at multiple spatial and/or temporal scales in order to maintain ecosystem services that provide cri...

  12. Eight years of Conservation Agriculture-based cropping systems research in Eastern Africa to conserve soil and water and mitigate effects of climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araya, Tesfay; Nyssen, Jan; Govaerts, Bram; Lanckriet, Sil; Baudron, Frédéric; Deckers, Jozef; Cornelis, Wim

    2014-05-01

    In Ethiopia, repeated plowing, complete removal of crop residues at harvest, aftermath grazing of crop fields and occurrence of repeated droughts have reduced the biomass return to the soil and aggravated cropland degradation. Conservation Agriculture (CA)-based resource conserving cropping systems may reduce runoff and soil erosion, and improve soil quality, thereby increasing crop productivity. Thus, a long-term tillage experiment has been carried out (2005 to 2012) on a Vertisol to quantify - among others - changes in runoff and soil loss for two local tillage practices, modified to integrate CA principles in semi-arid northern Ethiopia. The experimental layout was a randomized complete block design with three replications on permanent plots of 5 m by 19 m. The tillage treatments were (i) derdero+ (DER+) with a furrow and permanent raised bed planting system, ploughed only once at planting by refreshing the furrow from 2005 to 2012 and 30% standing crop residue retention, (ii) terwah+ (TER+) with furrows made at 1.5 m interval, plowed once at planting, 30% standing crop residue retention and fresh broad beds, and (iii) conventional tillage (CT) with a minimum of three plain tillage operations and complete removal of crop residues. All the plowing and reshaping of the furrows was done using the local ard plough mahresha and wheat, teff, barley and grass pea were grown. Glyphosate was sprayed starting from the third year onwards (2007) at 2 l ha-1 before planting to control pre-emergent weeds in CA plots. Runoff and soil loss were measured daily. Soil water content was monitored every 6 days. Significantly different (psoil losses were 4 t ha-1 y-1 in DER+, 13 in TER+ and 18 in CT. Soil water storage during the growing season was constantly higher in CA-based systems compared with CT. A period of at least three years of cropping was required before improvements in crop yield became significant. Further, modeling of the sediment budgets shows that total soil loss

  13. Ozone exposure of forests in the selected countries; 1 : 34 000 000; Ozone exposure index of forests; 1 : 3 000 000; Ozone exposure of agricultural crops in the selected countries; 1 : 34 000 000; Ozone exposure index of agricultural crops; 1 : 3 000 000

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The amount of the ground level ozone in the southern and central Europe (above all in the photochemically favourable years) significantly exceeds the AOT 40 (Accumulated Exposure Over Threshold of 40 ppb) values of loads critical for vegetation at the present time and it represents one of the principal stress factors affecting the forest ecosystems. The AOT 40 of forests is the sum of hour concentrations above the level of 40 ppb (80 μg.m-3) from the daily values (global sun radiation exceeding 50 W.m-2) for the months April - September. According to the recommendations of the UN European Economic Commission, the critical level of AOT 40 is 10,000 ppb.h. The AOT 40 definition for agricultural crops is the same, while summary is done only for the months of May - July. The threshold values for agricultural crops is, pursuing the recommendations of the UN European Economic Commission, AOT 40 = 3,000 ppb.h, which corresponds to about 5 % loss on harvest. For instance, the AOT40 values reach about the double of the critical level near the upper timberline in Slovakia while the critical values for agricultural crops are exceeded in the whole territory of the country. The future developments will depend on the development of ozone precursor emissions (N0X, VOC and CO) in Europe. (authors)

  14. Promoting Community-based Extension Agents as an Alternative Approach to Formal Agricultural Extension Service Delivery in Northern Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel Z. Bonye

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The CBEA concept is an alternative to community-based extension intervention aimed at addressing the inadequacy of formal extension services provision to rural poor farmers of the Northern Regions of Ghana. The study sought to find out the extent to which the Community-Based Extension Agent has improved access to extension services to rural farmers. The study used qualitative and quantitative methods such as, Focus Group Discussions, Key Informants, In-depth interviews, Household and Institutional Questionnaires to collect and analyses data. The findings are that: there are vibrant Community Based Extension Agents established providing extension services in crop, livestock and environmental issues in the study District; farmers groups are linked to external agents and other stakeholders for access to credit facilities; the CBEAs were found to be the main link between the community and external agents; the most dominant extension services delivery carried out by the CBEAs in the entire study district were in crop production, livestock production and bushfire management; there are well established criteria for selecting Community Based Extension Agents, and community Based Extension Agents were least motivated. The study recommends among others that: motivation packages such as bicycles would facilitate the movement CBEAs to reach out to majority of the farmers. There is also the need to link CBEAs to relevant institutions/organizations for support and establishment of mechanisms to generate funds to support activities. Finally, stakeholders and organization need to intensify community sensitization and awareness creation on activities of CBEAs.

  15. Promoting Community-Based Extension Agents as an Alternative Approach to Formal Agricultural Extension Service Delivery in Northern Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel Z. Bonye

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The CBEA concept is an alternative to community-based extension intervention aimed at addressing the inadequacy of formal extension services provision to rural poor farmers of the Northern Regions of Ghana. The study sought to find out the extent to which the Community-Based Extension Agent has improved access to extension services to rural farmers. The study used qualitative and quantitative methods such as, Focus Group Discussions, Key Informants, In-depth interviews, Household and Institutional Questionnaires to collect and analyses data. The findings are that: there are vibrant Community Based Extension Agents established providing extension services in crop, livestock and environmental issues in the study District; farmers groups are linked to external agents and other stakeholders for access to credit facilities; the CBEAs were found to be the main link between the community and external agents; the most dominant extension services delivery carried out by the CBEAs in the entire study district were in crop production, livestock production and bushfire management; there are well established criteria for selecting Community Based Extension Agents, and community Based Extension Agents were least motivated. The study recommends among others that: motivation packages such as bicycles would facilitate the movement CBEAs to reach out to majority of the farmers. There is also the need to link CBEAs to relevant institutions/organizations for support and establishment of mechanisms to generate funds to support activities. Finally, stakeholders and organization need to intensify community sensitization and awareness creation on activities of CBEAs.

  16. Organic manure as an alternative to crop residues for no-tillage wheat-maize systems in North China Plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    NT can provide both environmental and economic benefits and has been recognized as a sustainable land use practice in many areas worldwide. NT has induced some concerns in the North China Plain (NCP), e.g. unstable crop yield and fodder shortage, with regards to the amount of crop residues retained ...

  17. Alternative Crop Rotations in the Semi-arid Central Great Plains Region: How Much Fallow? Evaluating the Economics

    Science.gov (United States)

    The traditional crop production system in the semi-arid Central Great Plains Region (CGPR) of the U.S.A. is winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)-summer fallow (WF) or one crop every two years. This system is not a long-term sustainable dryland system. It is conducive to soil degradation and provide...

  18. Aerially seeding cover crops in the northern US Corn Belt: Limitations, future research needs, and alternative practices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Introducing cover crops into the corn-soybean rotation is one way to improve soil quality and reduce soil and nutrient losses. However, successful establishment after harvest of the main crop is highly unpredictable as a result of the short growing season in the northern US Corn Belt. Aerial applica...

  19. Farmer’s perception of coconut mite damage and crop diversification alternatives in the coastal belt of Tanzania

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.M. Oleke; A. Isinika; V. Manyong; R. Hanna; M. Sabelis

    2012-01-01

    This article analysed farmers' perceptions of the effects of coconut mite in their livelihood and assessed crop diversification as a copping strategy for reduced coconut production. A socio-economic model of farmers' decisions on intercropping as an indicator for overall crop diversity was developed

  20. AN ENERGY STRATEGY BASED ON ENERGY DEDICATED CROPS OR CORN: DIFFERENTIAL ECONOMIC AND REGIONAL IMPACTS

    OpenAIRE

    Torre Ugarte, Daniel de la

    2003-01-01

    The growth of the role of agriculture as a source of energy feedstock has been primarily concentrated on increasing corn use for ethanol. Alternatively, refocusing this growth in the utilization of dedicated energy crops could prove more advantageous as producers of more crops in a wider geographic area could benefit.