WorldWideScience

Sample records for alternative agricultural crops

  1. Alternative crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andreasen, L.M.; Boon, A.D.

    1992-01-01

    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.)

  2. Gender in crop agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Food and Agriculture Organization; The World Bank; IFAD

    2008-01-01

    Metadata only record This is a module in the "Gender in Agriculture Sourcebook" published by the World Bank, UN Food and Agriculture Organization, and International Fund for Agricultural Development. This module examines the role of gender in crop agriculture as an essential component of development and poverty reduction. Gender is an integral aspect of crop agriculture because women's roles in crop production and household subsistence, as well as their knowledge of complex production syst...

  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. Sustainable Agriculture: Cover Cropping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webster, Megan

    2018-01-01

    Sustainable agriculture practices are increasingly being used by farmers to maintain soil quality, increase biodiversity, and promote production of food that is environmentally safe. There are several types of sustainable agriculture practices such as organic farming, crop rotation, and aquaculture. This lesson plan focuses on the sustainable…

  5. Crop Protection in Medieval Agriculture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zadoks, J.C.

    2013-01-01

    Mediterranean and West European pre-modern agriculture (agriculture before 1600) was by necessity ‘organic agriculture’. Crop protection is part and parcel of this agriculture, with weed control in the forefront. Crop protection is embedded in the medieval agronomy text books but specialised

  6. Alternative Crops and Biofuel Production

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kenkel, Philip [Oklahoma State Univ., Stillwater, OK (United States); Holcomb, Rodney B. [Oklahoma State Univ., Stillwater, OK (United States)

    2013-03-01

    In order for the biofuel industry to meet the RFS benchmarks for biofuels, new feedstock sources and production systems will have to be identified and evaluated. The Southern Plains has the potential to produce over a billion gallons of biofuels from regionally produced alternative crops, agricultural residues, and animal fats. While information on biofuel conversion processes is available, it is difficult for entrepreneurs, community planners and other interested individuals to determine the feasibility of biofuel processes or to match production alternatives with feed stock availability and community infrastructure. This project facilitates the development of biofuel production from these regionally available feed stocks. Project activities are concentrated in five major areas. The first component focused on demonstrating the supply of biofuel feedstocks. This involves modeling the yield and cost of production of dedicated energy crops at the county level. In 1991 the DOE selected switchgrass as a renewable source to produce transportation fuel after extensive evaluations of many plant species in multiple location (Caddel et al,. 2010). However, data on the yield and cost of production of switchgrass are limited. This deficiency in demonstrating the supply of biofuel feedstocks was addressed by modeling the potential supply and geographic variability of switchgrass yields based on relationship of available switchgrass yields to the yields of other forage crops. This model made it possible to create a database of projected switchgrass yields for five different soil types at the county level. A major advantage of this methodology is that the supply projections can be easily updated as improved varieties of switchgrass are developed and additional yield data becomes available. The modeling techniques are illustrated using the geographic area of Oklahoma. A summary of the regional supply is then provided.

  7. Crop succession requirements in agricultural production planning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klein Haneveld, W.K.; Stegeman, A.

    2005-01-01

    A method is proposed to write crop succession requirements as linear constraints in an LP-based model for agricultural production planning. Crop succession information is given in the form of a set of inadmissible successions of crops. The decision variables represent the areas where a certain

  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. Cover Crops in Hillside Agriculture

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Our study focuses on the wet tropical hillsides of northern Honduras (Figure 1). ..... The eastern extreme of the region (Jutiapa) is a dry spot, with less rainfall (2 000 mm a-1) as a result ...... Paper presented at the International Workshop on Green Manure–Cover Crops for Smallholders in ..... Lamaster, J.P.; Jones, I.R. 1923.

  11. Energy Crops and the Common Agricultural Policy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCormick, Kes; Nilsson, Helen; Tomescu, Mihail [Lund Univ. (Sweden). International Inst. for Industrial Environmental Economics (IIIEE)

    2006-07-15

    The Biomass Action Plan (BAP) for Europe outlines how to achieve the targets for bioenergy and energy crops defined by the European Commission and member states. However, it is the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) that shapes the utilisation of agricultural land. This paper therefore reviews the supportive measures for energy crops in recent CAP reforms and investigates the effects on farmers in 'real-life' case studies from Sweden, Italy and Austria. This paper explores if the recent CAP reforms are sufficient to motivate farmers to cultivate energy crops; identifies the barriers and drivers for energy crops from the perspective of farmers; and suggests how to enhance supportive measures in the CAP to overcome barriers and complement the BAP.

  12. Crop modeling applications in agricultural water management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kisekka, Isaya; DeJonge, Kendall C.; Ma, Liwang; Paz, Joel; Douglas-Mankin, Kyle R.

    2017-01-01

    This article introduces the fourteen articles that comprise the “Crop Modeling and Decision Support for Optimizing Use of Limited Water” collection. This collection was developed from a special session on crop modeling applications in agricultural water management held at the 2016 ASABE Annual International Meeting (AIM) in Orlando, Florida. In addition, other authors who were not able to attend the 2016 ASABE AIM were also invited to submit papers. The articles summarized in this introductory article demonstrate a wide array of applications in which crop models can be used to optimize agricultural water management. The following section titles indicate the topics covered in this collection: (1) evapotranspiration modeling (one article), (2) model development and parameterization (two articles), (3) application of crop models for irrigation scheduling (five articles), (4) coordinated water and nutrient management (one article), (5) soil water management (two articles), (6) risk assessment of water-limited irrigation management (one article), and (7) regional assessments of climate impact (two articles). Changing weather and climate, increasing population, and groundwater depletion will continue to stimulate innovations in agricultural water management, and crop models will play an important role in helping to optimize water use in agriculture.

  13. Jerusalem artichoke as an agricultural crop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kosaric, N.; Cosentino, G.P.; Wieczorek, A.; Duvnjak, Z.

    1984-01-01

    The Jerusalem artichoke (Helianthus tuberosus) is an agricultural crop which is of great potential for food, production of fuels, and industrial products. This crop gives a high yield in tubers, it grows better in poor soils than most crops, and it is resistant to pests and common plant diseases as well as to cold temperatures. In this article, the agronomic characteristics of this plant are discussed in detail. Special emphasis is given to the effects of various parameters on the production of both tubers and tops from the Jerusalem artichoke. 74 references.

  14. Energy potential of agricultural crops in Kosovo

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sahiti, Naser; Sfishta, Avni; Gramatikov, Plamen

    2015-01-01

    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.

  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. DAMAGE BY GAME ANIMALS IN AGRICULTURAL CROPS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Sporek

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available In the recent years the damage caused by the game animals to the agricultural crops has increased considerably. An immediate cause of this situation is an expanding population of big game, especially wild boar. This increase is primarily due to the changes in agrocenoses, dominated by large area maize cropping. The crop damage is compensated by hunting associations leasing the specific areas. The aim of this paper was to present the costs of the compensation incurred by the lease-holders of the hunting grounds. A cause - effect relationship between greater game damage and increased harvest of the game animals was demonstrated. The analysis was based on the data provided in the Statistical Yearbooks of the Central Statistical Office for 2000-2013. The study also indicated a problem of a decline in roe deer population, caused by more intense harvest resulting from farmer compensation claims.

  17. Engineering crop nutrient efficiency for sustainable agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Liyu; Liao, Hong

    2017-10-01

    Increasing crop yields can provide food, animal feed, bioenergy feedstocks and biomaterials to meet increasing global demand; however, the methods used to increase yield can negatively affect sustainability. For example, application of excess fertilizer can generate and maintain high yields but also increases input costs and contributes to environmental damage through eutrophication, soil acidification and air pollution. Improving crop nutrient efficiency can improve agricultural sustainability by increasing yield while decreasing input costs and harmful environmental effects. Here, we review the mechanisms of nutrient efficiency (primarily for nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and iron) and breeding strategies for improving this trait, along with the role of regulation of gene expression in enhancing crop nutrient efficiency to increase yields. We focus on the importance of root system architecture to improve nutrient acquisition efficiency, as well as the contributions of mineral translocation, remobilization and metabolic efficiency to nutrient utilization efficiency. © 2017 Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

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

    OpenAIRE

    Ladoni, Moslem; Kravchenko, Alexandra N.; Robertson, G. Phillip

    2015-01-01

    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 poten...

  1. 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.

  2. Biogas Production from Energy Crops and Agriculture Residues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Guangtao

    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 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...... 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...

  3. Smallholder food crop farmers' participation in Bank of Agriculture ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Low participation of smallholder farmers in agricultural loans, despite efforts by governments and NGOs to make funds available for agricultural growth and development, has remained a matter of concern in Nigeria. The study analysed smallholder food crop farmers' participation in Bank of Agriculture loan (BOA) scheme in ...

  4. Integrated crop management: an approach to sustainable agricultural development.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meerman, F.; Ven, van de G.W.J.; Keulen, van H.; Breman, H.

    1996-01-01

    In developing countries, agriculture is being intensified to produce more food and agricultural products. In most agricultural development strategies, the order of priorities is on: (i) increasing yields, (ii) crop protection, and (iii) human health, environmental and social aspects. This sequential

  5. Agricultural field reclamation utilizing native grass crop production

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. Cure

    2013-01-01

    Developing a method of agricultural field reclamation to native grasses in the Lower San Pedro Watershed could prove to be a valuable tool for educational and practical purposes. Agricultural field reclamation utilizing native grass crop production will address water table depletion, soil degradation and the economic viability of the communities within the watershed....

  6. Annual cropped area expansion and agricultural production ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Ethiopian Journal of Environmental Studies and Management ... considerable annual increase of varying extent over time and space for both annual output and area ... The study suggests improving productivity through sustainable agricultural ...

  7. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ladoni, Moslem; Kravchenko, Alexandra N; Robertson, G Phillip

    2015-01-01

    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 in row-crop

  9. Effects of alternative cropping systems on globe artichoke qualitative traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spanu, Emanuela; Deligios, Paola A; Azara, Emanuela; Delogu, Giovanna; Ledda, Luigi

    2018-02-01

    Traditionally, globe artichoke cultivation in the Mediterranean basin is based on monoculture and on use of high amounts of nitrogen fertiliser. This raises issues regarding its compatibility with sustainable agriculture. We studied the effect of one typical conventional (CONV) and two alternative cropping systems [globe artichoke in sequence with French bean (NCV1), or in biannual rotation (NCV2) with cauliflower and with a leguminous cover crop in inter-row spaces] on yield, polyphenol and mineral content of globe artichoke heads over two consecutive growing seasons. NCV2 showed statistical differences in terms of fresh product yield with respect to the monoculture systems. In addition, the dihydroxycinnamic acids and dicaffeoylquinic acids of non-conventional samples were one-fold significantly higher than the conventional one. All the samples reported good mineral content, although NCV2 achieved a higher Fe content than conventional throughout the two seasons. After two and three dates of sampling, the CONV samples showed the highest levels of K content. In our study, an acceptable commercial yield and quality of 'Spinoso sardo' were achieved by shifting the common conventional agronomic management to more sustainable ones, by means of an accurate choice of cover crop species and rotations introduced in the systems. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry.

  10. Modifying agricultural crops for improved nutrition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGloughlin, Martina Newell

    2010-11-30

    The first generation of biotechnology products commercialized were crops focusing largely on input agronomic traits whose value was often opaque to consumers. The coming generations of crop plants can be grouped into four broad areas each presenting what, on the surface, may appear as unique challenges and opportunities. The present and future focus is on continuing improvement of agronomic traits such as yield and abiotic stress resistance in addition to the biotic stress tolerance of the present generation; crop plants as biomass feedstocks for biofuels and "bio-synthetics"; value-added output traits such as improved nutrition and food functionality; and plants as production factories for therapeutics and industrial products. From a consumer perspective, the focus on value-added traits, especially improved nutrition, is undoubtedly one of the areas of greatest interest. From a basic nutrition perspective, there is a clear dichotomy in demonstrated need between different regions and socioeconomic groups, the starkest being inappropriate consumption in the developed world and under-nourishment in Less Developed Countries (LDCs). Dramatic increases in the occurrence of obesity and related ailments in affluent regions are in sharp contrast to chronic malnutrition in many LDCs. Both problems require a modified food supply, and the tools of biotechnology have a part to play. Developing plants with improved traits involves overcoming a variety of technical, regulatory and indeed perception hurdles inherent in perceived and real challenges of complex traits modifications. Continuing improvements in molecular and genomic technologies are contributing to the acceleration of product development to produce plants with the appropriate quality traits for the different regions and needs. Crops with improved traits in the pipeline, the evolving technologies and the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead are covered. Copyright © 2010. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  11. Agriculture and crop science in China:Innovation and sustainability

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yunbi Xu; Jiayang Li; Jianmin Wan

    2017-01-01

    The International Crop Science Congress (ICSC) is a regularly held event allowing crop scientists to integrate current knowledge into a global context and international applications. The 7th ICSC was held on August 14–19, 2016 in Beijing, China, with the theme "Crop Science: Innovation and Sustainability". As a companion production for this great congress, the nine papers collected in this special issue feature important fields of crop science in China. This editorial first briefly introduces the 7th ICSC, followed by a brief discussion of the current status of, constraints to, and innovations in Chinese agriculture and crop science. Finally, the main scientific points of the papers published in this special issue are surveyed, covering important advances in hybrid rice breeding, minor cereals, food legumes, rapeseed, crop systems, crop management, cotton, genomics-based germplasm research, and QTL mapping. In a section describing future prospects, it is indicated that China faces a full transition from traditional to modern agriculture and crop science.

  12. 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…

  13. 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..

  14. 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)

  15. Alternative Agricultural Enterprises. Production, Management & Marketing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox, Linda Kirk; And Others

    These nine cooperative extension bulletins provide basic information on various alternative agricultural enterprises. Discussed in the first eight bulletins are the following topics: business ownership (sole proprietorship, partnership, incorporation, cooperatives); business and the family (goals, qualifications, ways of ensuring family support,…

  16. 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

  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. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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/be...

  1. NEW TRENDS IN AGRICULTURE - CROP SYSTEMS WITHOUT SOIL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ioan GRAD

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The paper studied new system of agriculture - crop systems without soil. The culture systems without soil can be called also the hydroponic systems and now in Romania are not used only sporadically. In other countries (USA, Japan, the Netherlands, France, UK, Denmark, Israel, Australia, etc.. they represent the modern crop technology, widely applied to vegetables, fruits, fodder, medicinal plants and flowers by the experts in this area. In the world, today there are millions of hectares hydroponics, most of the vegetables, herbs, fruits of hypermarkets are coming from the culture systems without soil. The process consists of growing plants in nutrient solutions (not in the ground, resorting to an complex equipment, depending on the specifics of each crop, so that the system can be applied only in the large farms, in the greenhouses, and not in the individual households. These types of culture systems have a number of advantages and disadvantages also. Even if today's culture systems without soil seem to be the most modern and surprising technology applied in plant growth, the principle is very old. Based on him were built The Suspended Gardens of the Semiramis from Babylon, in the seventh century BC, thanks to him, the population from the Peru”s highlands cultivates vegetables on surfaces covered with water or mud. The peasant households in China, even today use the millenary techniques of the crops on gravel. .This hydroponic agriculture system is a way of followed for Romanian agriculture too, despite its high cost, because it is very productive, ecological, can cover, by products, all market demands and it answer, increasingly, constraints of urban life. The concept of hydroponics agriculture is known and appreciated in Romania also, but more at the theory level.

  2. 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.

  3. Quantifying effects of oxidant air pollutants on agricultural crops

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Medeiros, W H; Moskowitz, P D

    1983-01-01

    Estimating risks of air pollution damage to agricultural crops requires identifying crop location and size, likely doses, models for translating dose to response, and measures of response appropriate for economic analysis. Assessment of risk requires compatible data sets for each of these variables. Analysis of air pollution mixtures suggests that oxidant crop damage is caused by three compounds: ozone, nitrogen oxides, and peroxyacetylnitrates. The phytotoxicity of ozone, the most prevalent photochemical oxidant, has been studied more extensively than the other two oxidants, and its effects on vegetation are best understood. Response of vegetation to air pollutants was first characterized by foliar or visible injury. Subsequent research indicated that foliar injury did not translate directly into reduced plant growth or yield, which can be measured. Response to air pollutants may be influenced by physical, biological, and environmental factors. Inherent genetic resistance is probably the most important single factor affecting plant response, although environmental factors influencing stomatal aperture may also be important. For several crops open-top chamber studies and cross sectional analyses of field data provide adequate information to develop dose-response functions. All of these studies have both strengths and weaknesses. Although a number of different models exist for selected crops, there is no single biological or statistical criterion which identifies the best or most accurate model.

  4. Economics of trees versus annual crops on marginal agricultural lands

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gupta, T.; Mohan, D.

    1982-01-01

    The results of a study conducted by the CMA in Rajasthan, selected as one of the major problem states because of its hot, arid and drought-prone character, and its present declining agricultural, livestock and fuelwood production coupled with an expansion of the area under annual crops. The present situation in Rajasthan is described and estimates made of returns from current land based enterprises (annual crops and livestock rearing) in comparison with the expected costs and returns of establishing suitable tree crops in the area. The financial and social feasibility of changing land use from annual to tree crops (while maintaining livestock production) is discussed, together with a consideration of some management and policy issues. Six tree species (Acacia tortilis, Albizzia (Albizia) lebbek, Prosopis cineraria, P. juliflora, Zizyphus species and Leucaena leucocephala) were identified as adaptable for the region and the economics of raising each over 1 felling cycle calculated. Depending on the species and cycle length, net annual returns were Rs 360-3270/ha (using a discount factor of 11%), with an expected return of Rs1680/ha if the species were allocated equally; this is considerably better than the expected returns from annual crops and standing farm trees (Rs-40 to Rs30/ha, with or without including the costs of family labor). Fifteen tables in the text and 9 in appendices give detailed breakdowns of costs and returns. 104 references.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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...

  8. Cold hardiness research on agricultural and horticultural crops in Finland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. LINDÉN

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper represents an overview of cold hardiness research conducted on agricultural and horticultural crops, as well as on amenity plants in Finland. Inadequate freezing tolerance and/or winter hardiness often prevents introduction of new species and cultivars to Finland. Field observations on winter hardiness and more recently the results from laboratory freezing tests, have assisted breeders to select hardy genotypes. Research approaches for agricultural crops have evolved from observations on winter and frost damage to studies on molecular mechanisms of cold acclimation and freezing injury. The results of experiments on survival of winter cereals, grasses and clovers and frost tolerance of potato and turnip rape are discussed. The studies conducted on horticultural crops, including apple, strawberry, raspberry, currants, blueberry, sea buckthorn, perennial herbs as well as on ornamental trees and shrubs have included field evaluations of cultivars, or selections for winter hardiness, and studies on the effects of cultural management practices on winter survival. During the last decade detailed studies including controlled freezing tests have provided tools to assist in explanation of the underlying mechanisms of cold hardiness also in horticultural plants. ;

  9. Increasing plant diversity with border crops reduces insecticide use and increases crop yield in urban agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Nian-Feng; Cai, You-Ming; Shen, Yan-Jun; Ji, Xiang-Yun; Wu, Xiang-Wen; Zheng, Xiang-Rong; Cheng, Wei; Li, Jun; Jiang, Yao-Pei; Chen, Xin; Weiner, Jacob; Jiang, Jie-Xian; Nie, Ming; Ju, Rui-Ting; Yuan, Tao; Tang, Jian-Jun; Tian, Wei-Dong; Zhang, Hao; Li, Bo

    2018-05-24

    Urban agriculture is making an increasing contribution to food security in large cities around the world. The potential contribution of biodiversity to ecological intensification in urban agricultural systems has not been investigated. We present monitoring data collected from rice fields in 34 community farms in mega-urban Shanghai, China, from 2001 to 2015, and show that the presence of a border crop of soybeans and neighboring crops (maize, eggplant and Chinese cabbage), both without weed control, increased invertebrate predator abundance, decreased the abundance of pests and dependence on insecticides, and increased grain yield and economic profits. Two 2 year randomized experiments with the low and high diversity practices in the same locations confirmed these results. Our study shows that diversifying farming practices can make an important contribution to ecological intensification and the sustainable use of associated ecosystem services in an urban ecosystem. © 2018, Wan et al.

  10. Estimating crop yields and crop evapotranspiration distributions from remote sensing and geospatial agricultural data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, T.; McLaughlin, D.

    2017-12-01

    Growing more crops to provide a secure food supply to an increasing global population will further stress land and water resources that have already been significantly altered by agriculture. The connection between production and resource use depends on crop yields and unit evapotranspiration (UET) rates that vary greatly, over both time and space. For regional and global analyses of food security it is appropriate to treat yield and UET as uncertain variables conditioned on climatic and soil properties. This study describes how probability distributions of these variables can be estimated by combining remotely sensed land use and evapotranspiration data with in situ agronomic and soils data, all available at different resolutions and coverages. The results reveal the influence of water and temperature stress on crop yield at large spatial scales. They also provide a basis for stochastic modeling and optimization procedures that explicitly account for uncertainty in the environmental factors that affect food production.

  11. 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.

  12. Nuclear agriculture and biotechnology: integrated approaches for crop improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suprasanna, P.; Venugopalan, V.

    2017-01-01

    Use of radiation and radioisotopes in agriculture is one of the most important fields of peaceful applications of atomic energy for societal benefit. They are used to induce genetic variability in crop plants to develop improved mutant varieties, to manage insect pests, to monitor fate and persistence of pesticides, to study fertilizer use efficiency and plant micronutrient uptake and also to preserve agricultural produce. So far, BARC has developed and released 42 Trombay mutant varieties in oilseeds (groundnut, mustard, soybean, sunflower), pulses (pigeonpea, blackgram, greengram, cowpea), rice and jute for commercial cultivation across the nation. Mutant characterization has been benefitted by genomics approaches and availability of crop genome sequencing. In this regard, studies are underway to utilize mutant germplasm for molecular characterization and understanding trait modification. The nuclear technologies have benefited the farmers, traders and end-users and will continue to play a significant role in addressing food and nutritional security. In this presentation, an overview will be given on the activities of the NABTD in the field of nuclear agriculture and biotechnology

  13. Effects of selenium supplementation on four agricultural crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Kathleen M; Gallardo-Williams, Maria T; Benson, Robert F; Martin, Dean F

    2003-01-29

    Agricultural crops can be used either to remediate selenium-contaminated soils or to increase the daily selenium intake of consumers after soil supplementation using inorganic or organic selenium sources. In this study, four agricultural crops were examined for potential selenium enhancement. Soils containing tomato, strawberry, radish, and lettuce plants were supplemented with either an inorganic or an organic form of selenium. Two different soils, i.e., low Se and high Se containing, were also used. Statistically significant differences in appearance, fruit production, and fresh weights of the fruit produced were studied. Next, the amount of selenium retained in the edible fruits, nonedible plant, and soil for each was analyzed by acid digestion followed by hydride generation atomic absorption analysis. Finally, inhibition effects on the seeds of the agricultural plants were studied. The results show that supplementation with an inorganic form of selenium led to higher retention in the plants, with a maximum of 97.5% retained in the edible portion of lettuce plants.

  14. Crop improvement through mutation techniques in Chinese agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wen, X.; Qu, L.

    1996-01-01

    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

  15. Natural radioactivity in Swedish agricultural soils and crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eriksson, Ake; Rosen, K.

    2000-01-01

    In this work we report on investigations in Sweden of the natural radioactivity of 40 K, 226 Ra and 232 Th in the agricultural soils and of 226 Ra in the crops. In addition information is given on factors important for the plant availability of these nuclides to the crop plants. Also, from a number of works, background data on the transfer from soils to plants in different environments are presented. These works show that there is a large variation depending on local conditions and crop type in the accumulation of natural radioactive elements by the plants. Thus, concentration ratios (plant/soil) calculated for fresh crop weight and dry soil weight showed for 238 U in forage crops and in grain a range 0.001-0.005, for 226 Ra a range 0.001-0.03 and for 210 Pb a range 0.0004-0.2. The higher value was limit for vegetative plant parts and the lower value limit for generative parts, seeds and grain. In Swedish early studies, evidence was found that in field crops on the same soils the radium/calcium-ratio in grain was reduced according to the following order winter wheat>spring wheat> barley>oats. Variation among the crops on different soils showed ranges from 1-0.1 to 1-0.4. The radium/calcium-ratio in straw was 4 to 7 times higher than in grain. Also field experiments showed that proper liming on acid soils could reduce the radium/calcium ratio by 40 per cent. Our study shows that the average contents of the nuclides 226 Ra and 232 Th in Bq per kg dry weight is of the same size of order, 40, 50 and 80 Bq per kg in the southern, in the western and in the middle regions of Sweden, respectively. The difference between regions is not occasional. It depends on the type of the mother material and on the different clay contents of the soils, as is indicated also by the potassium content. Considering also the daughters of the nuclide series it is found that the total nuclide activity will reach a sum of 300-600 kBq per square meter of the plough layer. The total activity may

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alluvione, Francesco; Moretti, Barbara; Sacco, Dario; Grignani, Carlo

    2011-01-01

    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.

  17. 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.

  18. Sorghum - An alternative energy crop for marginal lands and reclamation sites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukas, Stefan; Theiß, Markus; Jäkel, Kerstin

    2017-04-01

    The production of biogas and the associated cultivation of energy crops are still of great importance. Considering increasing restrictions for the cultivation of standard biogas crop maize regarding an environmentally friendly production of biomass, a wider range of energy crops is needed. The cultivation of sorghum can contribute to this. As maize, sorghum is a C4-plant and offers a high biomass yield potential. Originated in the semi-arid tropics, sorghum is well adapted to warm and dry climate and particularly noted for its drought tolerance compared to maize. It also makes few demands on soil quality and shows a good capability of nutrient acquisition. Therefore, particularly on marginal areas and reclamation sites with low soil nutrient and water content sorghum can contribute to secure crop yield and income of farmers. The applied research project aims at and reflects on the establishment of sorghum as a profitable and ecological friendly cropping alternative to maize, especially in the face of probable climate change with increasing risks for agriculture. For this purpose, site differentiated growing and cultivar trials with a standardized planting design as well as several practical on-farm field experiments were conducted. The agronomical and economic results will lead to scientifically based procedures and standards for agricultural practice with respect to cultivation methods (drilling, pest-management, fertilization), cropping sequence and technique, cropping period or position in crop rotation. Even by now there is a promising feedback from the agricultural practice linked with an increasing demand for information. Moreover, the specific cropping area is increasing continuously. Therefore, the leading signs for the establishment of sorghum as profitable alternative to maize biogas production are positive. Sorghum cultures perform best as main crops in the warm D locations in the middle and East German dry areas. Here, the contribution margin

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Uchida, S.; Tagami, K.

    2011-01-01

    Information about the distribution and cycling of stable iodine (I) in the environment is useful for dose estimation from its long-lived radioiodisotope, 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 -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.)

  20. Constraints to the possible alternatives from Arizona agriculture

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Foster, K.E.

    1979-01-01

    The problems plaguing Arizona agriculture are outlined including the primary factors of declining groundwater supplies and increasing costs of energy to pump irrigation water. Two alternatives are suggested. The first alternative is to reduce or stabilize energy costs, an event that the authors acknowledge as being rather unlikely. Pumping costs using various fuels during the period 1891 to 1978 are reviewed. The second alternative involves developing cultivation techniques for drought-resistant plants native to arid regions, plants which have economic potential. Most of these plants would require little irrigation under cultivation and could substitute for cash crops being cultivated under heavy irrigation in Arizona. Four of these plants native to arid regions in the United States are discussed in some detail. Guayule (Parthenium argentatum) is a known rubber producer. Jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis) produces a liquid wax similar to the oil of the sperm whale, an endangered species. The gopher plant (Euphorbia lathyrus) is a potential producer of petrochemical feedstock for use as an energy source. Finally the buffalo gourd (Cucurbita foetidissima) is a possible source of food for both humans and livestock.

  1. 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...

  2. 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.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, M.H.

    2005-01-01

    , is 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....

  4. 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.

  5. GM crops in Ethiopia : a realistic way to increase agricultural performance?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Azadi, Hossein; Taisma, Nanda; Ho, Peter; Zarafshani, Kiumars

    Much has been published on the application of genetically modified (GM) crops in Africa, but agricultural performance has hardly been addressed. This paper discusses the main consequences of GM crops on agricultural performance in Ethiopia. Three main criteria of performance productivity,

  6. Effect of air pollution on agricultural and forest crops. I

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Matsushima, J

    1971-10-01

    Indirect and direct effects of air pollutants on agricultural and forest crops are discussed. Pollutants can cause changes in the quality of pesticides, imbalances in the nutritional makeup of crops, and other effects in the soil. Past studies have shown that there is a definite correlation between the germ induced blight of pine trees and the concentration of sulfur dioxide in air. Infestation of pine insects and the degree of oxidant in the air also have close relationships. The final cause for blight of pines is often the work of insects such as western pine beetles and mountain pine beetles, but the insects attack trees that are already weakened by oxidant. Orange trees sprayed with pesticide were fumigated in SO/sub 2/. Control trees showed a marked state of good health in comparison to the fumigated trees. However, the relationship and mechanism of the pesticide and SO/sub 2/ are controlled by a complex set of factors. Lime and sulfur compound pesticides also affect citrus trees when SO/sub 2/ is present. Trees sprayed during winter in conjunction with SO/sub 2/ fumigation show a heavy shedding of leaves. The SO/sub 2/ accumulation in soil and plant in the form of acidity or sulfur result in increases of potassium, calcium, or magnesium, depending on the type of produce. Direct effects of SO/sub 2/ are discussed based on the mathematical formula of Thomas, and invisible damages caused by winter fumigation in SO/sub 2/ such as deterioration of growth and photosynthesis are discussed.

  7. 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.

  8. From alternative Agriculture to the Food Industry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Thorkild; Kristensen, Niels Heine

    1997-01-01

    for 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...

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1997-01-01

    Field-scale studies in the Southeast have been addressing the environmental effects of converting agricultural lands to biomass crop production since 1994. Erosion, surface water quality and quantity and subsurface movement of water and nutrients from woody crops, switchgrass and agricultural crops are being compared. Nutrient cycling, soil physical changes, and crop productivity are also being monitored at the three sites. Maximum sediment losses occurred in the spring and fall. Losses were greater from sweetgum planted without a cover crop than with a cover crop. Nutrient losses of N and P in runoff and subsurface water occurred primarily after spring fertilizer application. These field plot studies are serving as the basis for a water shed study initiated in 1997. Results from the two studies will be used to develop and model nutrient and hydrologic budgets for woody crop plantings to identify potential constraints to sustainable deployment of short-rotation woody crops in the southeastern United States. (author)

  10. Introducing perennial biomass crops into agricultural landscapes to address water quality challenges and provide other environmental services: Integrating perennial bioenergy crops into agricultural landscapes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cacho, J. F. [Environmental Science Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Lemont IL USA; Negri, M. C. [Environmental Science Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Lemont IL USA; Zumpf, C. R. [Environmental Science Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Lemont IL USA; Campbell, P. [Environmental Science Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Lemont IL USA

    2017-11-29

    The world is faced with a difficult multiple challenge of meeting nutritional, energy, and other basic needs, under a limited land and water budget, of between 9 and 10 billion people in the next three decades, mitigating impacts of climate change, and making agricultural production resilient. More productivity is expected from agricultural lands, but intensification of production could further impact the integrity of our finite surface water and groundwater resources. Integrating perennial bioenergy crops in agricultural lands could provide biomass for biofuel and potential improvements on the sustainability of commodity crop production. This article provides an overview of ways in which research has shown that perennial bioenergy grasses and short rotation woody crops can be incorporated into agricultural production systems with reduced indirect land use change, while increasing water quality benefits. Current challenges and opportunities as well as future directions are also highlighted.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anand, Anjali

    2014-01-01

    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

  12. GEOGLAM Crop Assessment Tool: Adapting from global agricultural monitoring to food security monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Humber, M. L.; Becker-Reshef, I.; Nordling, J.; Barker, B.; McGaughey, K.

    2014-12-01

    The GEOGLAM Crop Monitor's Crop Assessment Tool was released in August 2013 in support of the GEOGLAM Crop Monitor's objective to develop transparent, timely crop condition assessments in primary agricultural production areas, highlighting potential hotspots of stress/bumper crops. The Crop Assessment Tool allows users to view satellite derived products, best available crop masks, and crop calendars (created in collaboration with GEOGLAM Crop Monitor partners), then in turn submit crop assessment entries detailing the crop's condition, drivers, impacts, trends, and other information. Although the Crop Assessment Tool was originally intended to collect data on major crop production at the global scale, the types of data collected are also relevant to the food security and rangelands monitoring communities. In line with the GEOGLAM Countries at Risk philosophy of "foster[ing] the coordination of product delivery and capacity building efforts for national and regional organizations, and the development of harmonized methods and tools", a modified version of the Crop Assessment Tool is being developed for the USAID Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET). As a member of the Countries at Risk component of GEOGLAM, FEWS NET provides agricultural monitoring, timely food security assessments, and early warnings of potential significant food shortages focusing specifically on countries at risk of food security emergencies. While the FEWS NET adaptation of the Crop Assessment Tool focuses on crop production in the context of food security rather than large scale production, the data collected is nearly identical to the data collected by the Crop Monitor. If combined, the countries monitored by FEWS NET and GEOGLAM Crop Monitor would encompass over 90 countries representing the most important regions for crop production and food security.

  13. 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:

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furlan, Lorenzo; Kreutzweiser, David

    2015-01-01

    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 control options in Italian maize production and Canadian forestry to illustrate the principles of applying alternatives to neonicotinoids under an integrated pest management (IPM) strategy. An IPM approach considers all relevant and available information to make informed management decisions, providing pest control options based on actual need. We explore the benefits and challenges of several options for management of three insect pests in maize crops and an invasive insect pest in forests, including diversifying crop rotations, altering the timing of planting, tillage and irrigation, using less sensitive crops in infested areas, applying biological control agents, and turning to alternative reduced risk insecticides. Continued research into alternatives is warranted, but equally pressing is the need for information transfer and training for farmers and pest managers and the need for policies and regulations to encourage the adoption of IPM strategies and their alternative pest control options.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David A. Cleveland

    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.

  18. Monitoring Agricultural Cropping Patterns in the Great Lakes Basin Using MODIS-NDVI Time Series Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    This research examined changes in agricultural cropping patterns across the Great Lakes Basin (GLB) using the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data. Specific research objectives were to characterize the distribut...

  19. Prospects for cultivation of agricultural crops on highly contaminated fallow lands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Podolyak, A.G.; Las'ko, T.V.; Tagaj, S.A.; Potipko, N.S.; Bogachenko, D.S.

    2015-01-01

    In the long term after a nuclear accident, there is a necessity to address the issues associated with the recovery of contaminated fallow lands and their agricultural use for crop production. (authors)

  20. 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

  1. Agriculture sows pests: how crop domestication, host shifts, and agricultural intensification can create insect pests from herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernal, Julio S; Medina, Raul F

    2018-04-01

    We argue that agriculture as practiced creates pests. We use three examples (Corn leafhopper, Dalbulus maidis; Western corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera; Cotton fleahopper, Pseudatomoscelis seriatus) to illustrate: firstly, how since its origins, agriculture has proven conducive to transforming selected herbivores into pests, particularly through crop domestication and spread, and agricultural intensification, and; secondly, that the herbivores that became pests were among those hosted by crop wild relatives or associates, and were pre-adapted either as whole species or component subpopulations. Two of our examples, Corn leafhopper and Western corn rootworm, illustrate how following a host shift to a domesticated host, emergent pests 'hopped' onto crops and rode expansion waves to spread far beyond the geographic ranges of their wild hosts. Western corn rootworm exemplifies how an herbivore-tolerant crop was left vulnerable when it was bred for yield and protected with insecticides. Cotton fleahopper illustrates how removing preferred wild host plants from landscapes and replacing them with crops, allows herbivores with flexible host preferences to reach pest-level populations. We conclude by arguing that in the new geological epoch we face, the Anthropocene, we can improve agriculture by looking to our past to identify and avoid missteps of early and recent farmers. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Cover Crops in West Africa: Contributing to Sustainable Agriculture ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    It documents past experiences withcover cropping in Africa and will hopefully ... Adaptation strategies for two Colombian cities were discussed at ADAPTO's ... International Water Resources Association, in close collaboration with IDRC, ...

  3. USDA Foreign Agricultural Service overview for operational monitoring of current crop conditions and production forecasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crutchfield, J.

    2016-12-01

    The presentation will discuss the current status of the International Production Assessment Division of the USDA ForeignAgricultural Service for operational monitoring and forecasting of current crop conditions, and anticipated productionchanges to produce monthly, multi-source consensus reports on global crop conditions including the use of Earthobservations (EO) from satellite and in situ sources.United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) International Production AssessmentDivision (IPAD) deals exclusively with global crop production forecasting and agricultural analysis in support of the USDAWorld Agricultural Outlook Board (WAOB) lockup process and contributions to the World Agricultural Supply DemandEstimates (WASE) report. Analysts are responsible for discrete regions or countries and conduct in-depth long-termresearch into national agricultural statistics, farming systems, climatic, environmental, and economic factors affectingcrop production. IPAD analysts become highly valued cross-commodity specialists over time, and are routinely soughtout for specialized analyses to support governmental studies. IPAD is responsible for grain, oilseed, and cotton analysison a global basis. IPAD is unique in the tools it uses to analyze crop conditions around the world, including customweather analysis software and databases, satellite imagery and value-added image interpretation products. It alsoincorporates all traditional agricultural intelligence resources into its forecasting program, to make the fullest use ofavailable information in its operational commodity forecasts and analysis. International travel and training play animportant role in learning about foreign agricultural production systems and in developing analyst knowledge andcapabilities.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eriksson, A.; Rosen, K.

    1989-01-01

    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. 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

  6. The potential of intercropping food crops and energy crop to improve productivity of a degraded agriculture land in arid tropics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I.K.D. Jaya

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Degraded agricultural lands in the arid tropics have low soil organic carbon (SOC and hence low productivity. Poor farmers that their livelihoods depend highly on these types of lands are suffering. Cropping strategies that are able to improve the soil productivity are needed. In the present study, some intercropping models of food crops with bio-energy crop of castor (Ricinus communis L. were tested to assess their potential to improve the degraded land productivity. The intercropping models were: (1 castor - hybrid maize, (2 castor – short season maize, (3 castor – mungbean, and (4 castor –short season maize – mungbean. The results show that yields of the component crops in monoculture were relatively the same as in intercropping, resulted in a high Land Equivalent Ratio (LER. The highest LER (3.07 was calculated from intercropping castor plants with short season maize crops followed by mungbean with intercropping productivity of IDR 15,097,600.00 ha-1. Intercropping has a great potential to improve degraded agriculture land productivity and castor is a promising plant to improve biodiversity and area coverage on the land.

  7. ECONOMIC BACKGROUND CROP ROTATION AS A WAY TO PREVENT THE DEGRADATION OF AGRICULTURAL LANDSCAPES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shevchenko O.

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available This article explores that to successfully combat land degradation on lands occupied in agriculture, it is necessary to conduct complex soil conservation measures constitute a single interconnected system and protect soil from degradation. Found that rotation – a reasonable compromise between the main requirements of production, organization of territory and environment, placing crops in view of a favorable combination; compliance with acceptable saturation parameters optimally varying cultures, and thus the possible timing of a return to their previous cultivation while taking into account the duration of the accepted rotation. Determined that the implementation and observance of crop rotation and better ensure the replenishment of nutrients of the soil, improving and maintaining its favorable physical properties, prevent the emergence of weeds, pests and pathogens cultivated crops and preventing the depletion of soil degradation processes and development. Found that scientifically based crop rotation is the basis for the use of all complex farming practices, differentiated cultivation, rational use of fertilizers and caring for plants. Rotation is correct – it agroecosystem, which created the best conditions for growth and development of various crops, thus providing a growing high and stable yields, obtaining high quality products. Soil and climatic conditions, specialty farms, crops structure and their biological characteristics defined as the type of crop rotation and crop rotation order. Each rotation should be selected such status, which would provide the greatest yield per unit area of rational use of all land. Therefore, proper placement crops in crop rotation must necessarily take into account the requirements of crops to their predecessor, thus it must evaluate not only the direct action of the first culture, but also take into account the impact of the latter on the following crops rotation. On unproductive and degraded lands is

  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. An integrated model for assessing both crop productivity and agricultural water resources at a large scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okada, M.; Sakurai, G.; Iizumi, T.; Yokozawa, M.

    2012-12-01

    Agricultural production utilizes regional resources (e.g. river water and ground water) as well as local resources (e.g. temperature, rainfall, solar energy). Future climate changes and increasing demand due to population increases and economic developments would intensively affect the availability of water resources for agricultural production. While many studies assessed the impacts of climate change on agriculture, there are few studies that dynamically account for changes in water resources and crop production. This study proposes an integrated model for assessing both crop productivity and agricultural water resources at a large scale. Also, the irrigation management to subseasonal variability in weather and crop response varies for each region and each crop. To deal with such variations, we used the Markov Chain Monte Carlo technique to quantify regional-specific parameters associated with crop growth and irrigation water estimations. We coupled a large-scale crop model (Sakurai et al. 2012), with a global water resources model, H08 (Hanasaki et al. 2008). The integrated model was consisting of five sub-models for the following processes: land surface, crop growth, river routing, reservoir operation, and anthropogenic water withdrawal. The land surface sub-model was based on a watershed hydrology model, SWAT (Neitsch et al. 2009). Surface and subsurface runoffs simulated by the land surface sub-model were input to the river routing sub-model of the H08 model. A part of regional water resources available for agriculture, simulated by the H08 model, was input as irrigation water to the land surface sub-model. The timing and amount of irrigation water was simulated at a daily step. The integrated model reproduced the observed streamflow in an individual watershed. Additionally, the model accurately reproduced the trends and interannual variations of crop yields. To demonstrate the usefulness of the integrated model, we compared two types of impact assessment of

  10. 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 wild

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartomeus, Ignasi; Potts, Simon G; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Vaissière, Bernard E; Woyciechowski, Michal; Krewenka, Kristin M; Tscheulin, Thomas; Roberts, Stuart P M; Szentgyörgyi, Hajnalka; Westphal, Catrin; Bommarco, Riccardo

    2014-01-01

    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 wild pollinators in

  12. Mainstream and alternative sources of finance in Dutch agriculture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meulen, van der H.A.B.; Asseldonk, van M.A.P.M.

    2017-01-01

    In this paper mainstream and alternative sources of finance in
    Dutch agriculture is analysed. Dutch farmers make use of
    different sources of finance whereby bank loans continue to
    serve as the major source of debt financing. The average bank
    loan was approximately 740,000 euro per

  13. AquaCrop-OS: A tool for resilient management of land and water resources in agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Timothy; Brozovic, Nicholas; Butler, Adrian P.; Neale, Christopher M. U.; Raes, Dirk; Steduto, Pasquale; Fereres, Elias; Hsiao, Theodore C.

    2017-04-01

    Water managers, researchers, and other decision makers worldwide are faced with the challenge of increasing food production under population growth, drought, and rising water scarcity. Crop simulation models are valuable tools in this effort, and, importantly, provide a means of quantifying rapidly crop yield response to water, climate, and field management practices. Here, we introduce a new open-source crop modelling tool called AquaCrop-OS (Foster et al., 2017), which extends the functionality of the globally used FAO AquaCrop model. Through case studies focused on groundwater-fed irrigation in the High Plains and Central Valley of California in the United States, we demonstrate how AquaCrop-OS can be used to understand the local biophysical, behavioural, and institutional drivers of water risks in agricultural production. Furthermore, we also illustrate how AquaCrop-OS can be combined effectively with hydrologic and economic models to support drought risk mitigation and decision-making around water resource management at a range of spatial and temporal scales, and highlight future plans for model development and training. T. Foster, et al. (2017) AquaCrop-OS: An open source version of FAO's crop water productivity model. Agricultural Water Management. 181: 18-22. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.agwat.2016.11.015.

  14. 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. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  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. Canola Oil Fuel Cell Demonstration: Volume 2 - Market Availability of Agricultural Crops for Fuel Cell Applications

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Adams, John W; Cassarino, Craig; Spangler, Lee; Johnson, Duane; Lindstrom, Joel; Binder, Michael J; Holcomb, Franklin H; Lux, Scott M

    2006-01-01

    .... The reformation of vegetable oil crops for fuel cell uses is not well known; yet vegetable oils such as canola oil represent a viable alternative and complement to traditional fuel cell feedstocks...

  17. [Wildlife damage mitigation in agricultural crops in a Bolivian montane forest].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez, Eddy; Pacheco, Luis F

    2014-12-01

    Wildlife is often blamed for causing damage to human activities, including agricultural practices and the result may be a conflict between human interests and species conservation. A formal assessment of the magnitude of damage is necessary to adequately conduct management practices and an assessment of the efficiency of different management practices is necessary to enable managers to mitigate the conflict with rural people. This study was carried out to evaluate the effectiveness of agricultural management practices and controlled hunting in reducing damage to subsistence annual crops at the Cotapata National Park and Natural Area of Integrated Management. The design included seven fields with modified agricultural practices, four fields subjected to control hunting, and five fields held as controls. We registered cultivar type, density, frequency of visiting species to the field, crops lost to wildlife, species responsible for damage, and crop biomass. Most frequent species in the fields were Dasyprocta punctata and Dasypus novemcinctus. Hunted plots were visited 1.6 times more frequently than agriculturally managed plots. Crop lost to wildlife averaged 7.28% at agriculturally managed plots, 4.59% in plots subjected to hunting, and 27.61% in control plots. Species mainly responsible for damage were Pecari tajacu, D. punctata, and Sapajus apella. We concluded that both management strategies were effective to reduce damage by >50% as compared to unmanaged crop plots.

  18. Potential impacts of agricultural drought on crop yield variability under a changing climate in Texas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, K.; Leng, G.; Huang, M.; Sheffield, J.; Zhao, G.; Gao, H.

    2017-12-01

    Texas has the largest farm area in the U.S, and its revenue from crop production ranks third overall. With the changing climate, hydrological extremes such as droughts are becoming more frequent and intensified, causing significant yield reduction in rainfed agricultural systems. The objective of this study is to investigate the potential impacts of agricultural drought on crop yields (corn, sorghum, and wheat) under a changing climate in Texas. The Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model, which is calibrated and validated over 10 major Texas river basins during the historical period, is employed in this study.The model is forced by a set of statistically downscaled climate projections from Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) model ensembles at a spatial resolution of 1/8°. The CMIP5 projections contain four Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP) that represent different greenhouse gas concentration (4.5 and 8.5 w/m2 are selected in this study). To carry out the analysis, VIC simulations from 1950 to 2099 are first analyzed to investigate how the frequency and severity of agricultural droughts will be altered in Texas (under a changing climate). Second, future crop yields are projected using a statistical crop model. Third, the effects of agricultural drought on crop yields are quantitatively analyzed. The results are expected to contribute to future water resources planning, with a goal of mitigating the negative impacts of future droughts on agricultural production in Texas.

  19. Upgrading protein products using bioprocessing on agricultural crops

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    to 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......Due to increasing world population, higher average income, and changes in food preferences, there is a growing demand for proteins, especially novel plant-based protein sources, that can substitute animal proteins and supplement currently used soya proteins. Increased customer awareness......-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...

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2011-01-01

    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

  1. 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

  2. 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...

  3. Modeling technical change in climate analysis: evidence from agricultural crop damages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed, Adeel; Devadason, Evelyn S; Al-Amin, Abul Quasem

    2017-05-01

    This study accounts for the Hicks neutral technical change in a calibrated model of climate analysis, to identify the optimum level of technical change for addressing climate changes. It demonstrates the reduction to crop damages, the costs to technical change, and the net gains for the adoption of technical change for a climate-sensitive Pakistan economy. The calibrated model assesses the net gains of technical change for the overall economy and at the agriculture-specific level. The study finds that the gains of technical change are overwhelmingly higher than the costs across the agriculture subsectors. The gains and costs following technical change differ substantially for different crops. More importantly, the study finds a cost-effective optimal level of technical change that potentially reduces crop damages to a minimum possible level. The study therefore contends that the climate policy for Pakistan should consider the role of technical change in addressing climate impacts on the agriculture sector.

  4. Infra-red thermography for detecting drought in agricultural crops and scheduling irrigation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petrović Ivana

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The use of thermal imaging is a fast growing and potentially important tool in various fields of agriculture. The technology visually identified the rise of temperature in crop canopy which occurs as a result of drought and allows the precise scheduling of crop irrigation. The aim of presenting paper was to demonstrate the application of these techniques on potato plants and to point out on the necessity of irrigation for potato sustainable and economically justified production.

  5. 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.

  6. Supporting Agricultural Ecosystem Services through the Integration of Perennial Polycultures into Crop Rotations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Weißhuhn

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This review analyzes the potential role and long-term effects of field perennial polycultures (mixtures in agricultural systems, with the aim of reducing the trade-offs between provisioning and regulating ecosystem services. First, crop rotations are identified as a suitable tool for the assessment of the long-term effects of perennial polycultures on ecosystem services, which are not visible at the single-crop level. Second, the ability of perennial polycultures to support ecosystem services when used in crop rotations is quantified through eight agricultural ecosystem services. Legume–grass mixtures and wildflower mixtures are used as examples of perennial polycultures, and compared with silage maize as a typical crop for biomass production. Perennial polycultures enhance soil fertility, soil protection, climate regulation, pollination, pest and weed control, and landscape aesthetics compared with maize. They also score lower for biomass production compared with maize, which confirms the trade-off between provisioning and regulating ecosystem services. However, the additional positive factors provided by perennial polycultures, such as reduced costs for mineral fertilizer, pesticides, and soil tillage, and a significant preceding crop effect that increases the yields of subsequent crops, should be taken into account. However, a full assessment of agricultural ecosystem services requires a more holistic analysis that is beyond the capabilities of current frameworks.

  7. Modeling Agricultural Crop Production in China using AVHRR-based Vegetation Health Indices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, B.; Kogan, F.; Guo, W.; Zhiyuan, P.; Xianfeng, J.

    Weather related crop losses have always been a concern for farmers On a wider scale it has always influenced decision of Governments traders and other policy makers for the purpose of balanced food supplies trade and distribution of aid to the nations in need Therefore national policy and decision makers are giving increasing importance to early assessment of crop losses in response to weather fluctuations This presentation emphasizes utility of AVHRR-based Vegetation health index VHI for early warning of drought-related losses of agricultural production in China The VHI is a three-channel index characterizing greenness vigor and temperature of land surface which can be used as proxy for estimation of how healthy and potentially productive could be vegetation China is the largest in the world producer of grain including wheat and rice and cotton In the major agricultural areas China s crop production is very dependent on weather The VHI being a proxy indicator of weather impact on vegetation showed some correlation with productivity of agricultural crops during the critical period of their development The periods of the strongest correlation were investigated and used to build regression models where crop yield deviation from technological trend was accepted as a dependent and VHI as independent variables The models were developed for several major crops including wheat corn and soybeans

  8. IMPACT OF AGRICULTURAL POLICY ON RELATIVE PRICE VARIABILITY OF FOOD CROPS AND INFLATION IN NIGERIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ifeoluwa Akin Babalola

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Prices of food crops in Nigeria tend to exhibit similar trend with inflation. The study therefore established quantitatively relationships among agricultural policy, relative price variability (RPV of food crops and inflation in Nigeria. Data for the study includes annual producer prices (nominal and output of food crops and annual inflation rate obtained from the publications of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigerian Bureau of Statistics, Food and Agricultural Organisation and Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research covering the period of 1970-2009. Analytical tools used were RPV index and Error Correction Method (ECM. The results showed that the variables are stationary at their levels. As inflation increases, RPV of food crops also increases both in short run (0.0002 and the long run (0.0310. Civilian Post-Structural Adjustment Period Policies (CPSAP caused a significant reduction in inflation and consequently reduced the   RPV of food crops in the long run. There is a need for policies that will buffer the food crop sub-sector from the effects of inflation. Policies that reduce the rate of inflation and minimise RPV among food crops are needed. Effective management of inefficiencies and misallocation of resources in the sub-sector should be explored.

  9. Mitigating Groundwater Depletion in North China Plain with Cropping System that Alternate Deep and Shallow Rooted Crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao-Lin Yang

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available In the North China Plain, groundwater tables have been dropping at unsustainable rates of 1 m per year due to irrigation of a double cropping system of winter wheat and summer maize. To reverse the trend, we examined whether alternative crop rotations could save water. Moisture contents were measured weekly at 20 cm intervals in the top 180 cm of soil as part of a 12-year field experiment with four crop rotations: sweet potato→ cotton→ sweet potato→ winter wheat-summer maize (SpCSpWS, 4-year cycle; peanuts → winter wheat-summer maize (PWS, 2-year cycle; ryegrass–cotton→ peanuts→ winter wheat-summer maize (RCPWS, 3-year cycle; and winter wheat-summer maize (WS, each year. We found that, compared to WS, the SpCSpWS annual evapotranspiration was 28% lower, PWS was 19% lower and RCPWS was 14% lower. The yield per unit of water evaporated improved for wheat within any alternative rotation compared to WS, increasing up to 19%. Average soil moisture contents at the sowing date of wheat in the SpCSpWS, PWS, and RCPWS rotations were 7, 4, and 10% higher than WS, respectively. The advantage of alternative rotations was that a deep rooted crop of winter wheat reaching down to 180 cm followed shallow rooted crops (sweet potato and peanut drawing soil moisture from 0 to 120 cm. They benefited from the sequencing and vertical complementarity of soil moisture extraction. Thus, replacing the traditional crop rotation with cropping system that involves rotating with annual shallow rooted crops is promising for reducing groundwater depletion in the North China Plain.

  10. 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 biomes...... or potential grassland/steppe, whereas expansion on land suited for grazing but not for crop cultivation (grazable land) typically occurs on potential shrubland or a few other biomes depending on the region. Some uncertainty applies to the results but it is concluded that it is feasible to identify biomes...

  11. DEVELOPMENT OF ACTIVE AND BIODEGRADABLES CONTAINERS FOR AGRICULTURAL CROPS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franco Poggio

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, the development of biodegradable containers for crops that could be transplanted directly and act as fertilizers is proposed. Bovine gelatin was chosen as the base material, which was processed in a mini-injector mixer with a concentrated urea solution acted as a plasticizer. Rheological and tensile tests were performed in order to evaluate the injection of gelatin based formulations and mechanical properties related to the proposed application. Taking into account that biodegradable materials have a low water resistance, the increment of container stability was proposed using a surface coating. In addition, the influence of moisture content, the soluble matter and swelling were studied and analyzed. It was observed that coated samples were significantly more stable than the control ones, which guarantees the feasibility of the selected system and its potential development of biodegradable containers.

  12. 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

  13. Optimal Use of Agricultural Water and Land Resources through Reconfiguring Crop Planting Structure under Socioeconomic and Ecological Objectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qian Tan

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Many economic, social and ecological problems can be attributed to the scarcity and mismanagement of water and land resources. In this study, a multi-objective fuzzy–robust programming (MOFRP method was developed for supporting the optimal use of land and water resources in agriculture. MOFRP improved existing methods through taking ecological services of crop cultivation into account. It was also capable of reflecting fuzziness in preferences, priorities and parameters that were largely neglected in previous agricultural decision making. This method was applied to address a case in arid northwestern China. Optimal plans of crop cultivation reconfiguration were generated for sustaining local development under economic, ecological and social objectives as well as physical restraints in water and land resources. Compared to the status quo, the optimized plan would increase economic and ecological benefits by 12.2% and 18.8%, respectively. The efficiency of irrigation water could also be enhanced with the economic and ecological benefits per unit water being raised and the water consumption per unit land being reduced. The comparisons of the MOFRP model to four alternatives validated that it was capable of achieving satisfactory benefits and reducing system-violation risks without neglecting valuable uncertain information and ecological services of crops. The proposed method was also applicable to other multi-objective management problems under uncertainty without loss of generality.

  14. 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.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chavarría, D.N.; Verdenelli, R.A.; Muñoz, M.J.; Conforto, C.; Restovich, S.B.; Andriulo, A.E.; Meriles, J.M.; Vargas-Gil, S.

    2016-11-01

    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 weresown 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. (Author)

  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. Radio/antenna mounting system for wireless networking under row-crop agriculture conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Interest in and deployment of wireless monitoring systems is increasing in many diverse environments, including row-crop agricultural fields. While many studies have been undertaken to evaluate various aspects of wireless monitoring and networking, such as electronic hardware components, data-colle...

  18. Ground penetrating radar (GPR) detects fine roots of agricultural crops in the field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiuwei Liu; Xuejun Dong; Qingwu Xue; Daniel I. Leskovar; John Jifon; John R. Butnor; Thomas Marek

    2018-01-01

    Aim Ground penetrating radar (GPR) as a non-invasive technique is widely used in coarse root detection. However, the applicability of the technique to detect fine roots of agricultural crops is unknown. The objective of this study was to assess the feasibility of utilizing GPR to detect fine roots in the field.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Determination of optimal irrigation rates of agricultural crops under consideration of soil properties and climatic conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irakli Kruashvili

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available In conditions of increasing water shortage, further development of irrigated agriculture production is impossible without improving the methods of cultivation of agricultural crops, primarily irrigation technology. In 2015 the experiment have been conducted on the territory of irrigation farming area of village Tamarisi (Marneuli Municipality, according to which comprehensive study of local climatic and soil conditions were conducted. Received data were used for computation crop water requirements for tomato and melon under the different irrigation treatments. Obtained results have shown the possibility of water use efficiency and obtaining sufficiently high yields of crops that participated in the experiment that became possible in a case of usage of drip irrigation technology in combination with plastic mulch.

  2. Linking agricultural crop management and air quality models for regional to national-scale nitrogen assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooter, E. J.; Bash, J. O.; Benson, V.; Ran, L.

    2012-10-01

    While nitrogen (N) is an essential element for life, human population growth and demands for energy, transportation and food can lead to excess nitrogen in the environment. A modeling framework is described and implemented to promote a more integrated, process-based and system-level approach to the estimation of ammonia (NH3) emissions which result from the application of inorganic nitrogen fertilizers to agricultural soils in the United States. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Environmental Policy Integrated Climate (EPIC) model is used to simulate plant demand-driven fertilizer applications to commercial cropland throughout the continental US. This information is coupled with a process-based air quality model to produce continental-scale NH3 emission estimates. Regional cropland NH3 emissions are driven by the timing and amount of inorganic NH3 fertilizer applied, soil processes, local meteorology, and ambient air concentrations. Initial fertilizer application often occurs when crops are planted. A state-level evaluation of EPIC-simulated, cumulative planted area compares well with similar USDA reported estimates. EPIC-annual, inorganic fertilizer application amounts also agree well with reported spatial patterns produced by others, but domain-wide the EPIC values are biased about 6% low. Preliminary application of the integrated fertilizer application and air quality modeling system produces a modified geospatial pattern of seasonal NH3 emissions that improves current simulations of observed atmospheric particle nitrate concentrations. This modeling framework provides a more dynamic, flexible, and spatially and temporally resolved estimate of NH3 emissions than previous factor-based NH3 inventories, and will facilitate evaluation of alternative nitrogen and air quality policy and adaptation strategies associated with future climate and land use changes.

  3. Alternative sources of financing entrepreneurial undertakings in agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Njegomir Vladimir

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Insufficiency of internal financial resources and limited access to external sources of capital, as one of the key problems, local agricultural producers - entrepreneurs usualy describe with high cost of capital, complicated procedures, lack of transparency in regard to the settlement of credit requests and problems with security of loans. The aim of this study is to analyze the possibilities of facilitating access to increased volume of capital for domestic entrepreneurs in agriculture by using funding sources that are applied in developed economies for financing entrepreneurs. In order to achieve the stated aim, the subject of investigation in this paper is the analysis of alternative sources of financing, which use or increased adoption in Serbia would provide greater availability of capital for agricultural producers and others across the chain of agrobusiness complex and thus the promotion of entrepreneurial activity, and consequently, greater competitiveness and greater income of domestic agricultural producers and others across the chain of agrbusiness indirectly leading to increased economic growth and improvement of the welfare.

  4. Sustainable Agriculture - Enhancing environmental benefits, food nutritional quality and building crop resilience to abiotic and biotic stresses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feeding nutrition-dense food to future world populations presents agriculture with enormous challenges as estimates indicate that crop production must as much as double. Crop production cannot be increased to meet this challenge simply by increasing land acreage or using past agricultural intensific...

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1994-01-01

    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

  6. Between China and South Asia: A Middle Asian corridor of crop dispersal and agricultural innovation in the Bronze Age.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Chris J; Murphy, Charlene; Roberts, Rebecca; Lucas, Leilani; Silva, Fabio; Fuller, Dorian Q

    2016-10-01

    The period from the late third millennium BC to the start of the first millennium AD witnesses the first steps towards food globalization in which a significant number of important crops and animals, independently domesticated within China, India, Africa and West Asia, traversed Central Asia greatly increasing Eurasian agricultural diversity. This paper utilizes an archaeobotanical database (AsCAD), to explore evidence for these crop translocations along southern and northern routes of interaction between east and west. To begin, crop translocations from the Near East across India and Central Asia are examined for wheat ( Triticum aestivum ) and barley ( Hordeum vulgare ) from the eighth to the second millennia BC when they reach China. The case of pulses and flax ( Linum usitatissimum ) that only complete this journey in Han times (206 BC-AD 220), often never fully adopted, is also addressed. The discussion then turns to the Chinese millets, Panicum miliaceum and Setaria italica , peaches ( Amygdalus persica ) and apricots ( Armeniaca vulgaris ), tracing their movement from the fifth millennium to the second millennium BC when the Panicum miliaceum reaches Europe and Setaria italica Northern India, with peaches and apricots present in Kashmir and Swat. Finally, the translocation of japonica rice from China to India that gave rise to indica rice is considered, possibly dating to the second millennium BC. The routes these crops travelled include those to the north via the Inner Asia Mountain Corridor, across Middle Asia, where there is good evidence for wheat, barley and the Chinese millets. The case for japonica rice, apricots and peaches is less clear, and the northern route is contrasted with that through northeast India, Tibet and west China. Not all these journeys were synchronous, and this paper highlights the selective long-distance transport of crops as an alternative to demic-diffusion of farmers with a defined crop package.

  7. Development of an agricultural biotechnology crop product: testing from discovery to commercialization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Privalle, Laura S; Chen, Jingwen; Clapper, Gina; Hunst, Penny; Spiegelhalter, Frank; Zhong, Cathy X

    2012-10-17

    "Genetically modified" (GM) or "biotech" crops have been the most rapidly adopted agricultural technology in recent years. The development of a GM crop encompasses trait identification, gene isolation, plant cell transformation, plant regeneration, efficacy evaluation, commercial event identification, safety evaluation, and finally commercial authorization. This is a lengthy, complex, and resource-intensive process. Crops produced through biotechnology are the most highly studied food or food component consumed. Before commercialization, these products are shown to be as safe as conventional crops with respect to feed, food, and the environment. This paper describes this global process and the various analytical tests that must accompany the product during the course of development, throughout its market life, and beyond.

  8. Coupling Cover Crops with Alternative Swine Manure Application Strategies: Manure-15N Tracer Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Integration of rye cover crops with alternative liquid swine (Sus scrofa L.) manure application strategies may enhance retention of manure N in corn (Zea mays L.) - soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr] cropping systems. The objective of this study was to quantify uptake of manure derived-N by a rye (Seca...

  9. The biospeckle method for the investigation of agricultural crops: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zdunek, Artur; Adamiak, Anna; Pieczywek, Piotr M.; Kurenda, Andrzej

    2014-01-01

    Biospeckle is a nondestructive method for the evaluation of living objects. It has been applied to medicine, agriculture and microbiology for monitoring processes related to the movement of material particles. Recently, this method is extensively used for evaluation of quality of agricultural crops. In the case of botanical materials, the sources of apparent biospeckle activity are the Brownian motions and biological processes such as cyclosis, growth, transport, etc. Several different applications have been shown to monitor aging and maturation of samples, organ development and the detection and development of defects and diseases. This review will focus on three aspects: on the image analysis and mathematical methods for biospeckle activity evaluation, on published applications to botanical samples, with special attention to agricultural crops, and on interpretation of the phenomena from a biological point of view.

  10. The impact of Genetically Modified (GM) crops in modern agriculture: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raman, Ruchir

    2017-10-02

    Genetic modification in plants was first recorded 10,000 years ago in Southwest Asia where humans first bred plants through artificial selection and selective breeding. Since then, advancements in agriculture science and technology have brought about the current GM crop revolution. GM crops are promising to mitigate current and future problems in commercial agriculture, with proven case studies in Indian cotton and Australian canola. However, controversial studies such as the Monarch Butterfly study (1999) and the Séralini affair (2012) along with current problems linked to insect resistance and potential health risks have jeopardised its standing with the public and policymakers, even leading to full and partial bans in certain countries. Nevertheless, the current growth rate of the GM seed market at 9.83-10% CAGR along with promising research avenues in biofortification, precise DNA integration and stress tolerance have forecast it to bring productivity and prosperity to commercial agriculture.

  11. 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 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. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Structure and location of macronutrients in ancient and alternative crops (abstract)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Structure, histochemistry and composition of mature seeds of several ancient or alternative crops were studied by light and electron microscopies to localize specific macronutrients including protein, starch, non-starch carbohydrates and lipid. Botanically, these seeds fall into different classifica...

  13. 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.

  14. Optimal Cropping Pattern Based on Multiple Economic, Regional, and Agricultural Sustainability Criteria in Sari, Iran: Application of a Consolidated Model of AHP and Linear Programming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Fallahi

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Determining a suitable cropping pattern is an important task for planners and requires an exact and realistic decision-making process based on several goals and criteria corresponding to secure the interest of agricultural beneficiaries in long-term. Accordingly, this study reviews the current pattern operated by farmers in Sari, Iran, and intends to provide a cropping pattern that considers the multifold regional and agricultural sustainability criteria along with economic considerations. Materials and Methods: In order to achieve the study goals, a consolidated model of AHP and Linear Programming was applied. For this purpose, we constructed a three-level AHP, including a goal (determining the weight of each crop, seven criteria, and seven alternatives. Profitability, compatibility with regional and geographical conditions, water consumption, environmental effects of cropping, job creation opportunities, skill and proficiency required for producing a crop, and risk taken to cultivate a crop were considered as the criteria in the model. Seven alternative crops including rice, wheat, rapeseed, barley, soybean, clover, and vegetables were considered too. The next step is determining the weight of each criterion with regard to the goal and the weight of each alternative with regard to each criteria. By multiplying these weights, final weights for various crops were obtained from the model. Derived weights for each crop were then applied as objective function coefficients in the Linear Programming model and the model was solved subject to the constraints. Results and Discussion: Optimal cropping pattern determined based on the consolidated model of AHP and Linear Programming and the results compared to a scenario that only looks forward to maximizing the economic interests. Due to the low profitability of rapeseed and barley, these crops eliminated from the pattern in the profit-maximizing scenario. According to the results, the

  15. A methodological approach for deriving regional crop rotations as basis for the assessment of the impact of agricultural strategies using soil erosion as example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenz, Marco; Fürst, Christine; Thiel, Enrico

    2013-09-01

    Regarding increasing pressures by global societal and climate change, the assessment of the impact of land use and land management practices on land degradation and the related decrease in sustainable provision of ecosystem services gains increasing interest. Existing approaches to assess agricultural practices focus on the assessment of single crops or statistical data because spatially explicit information on practically applied crop rotations is mostly not available. This provokes considerable uncertainties in crop production models as regional specifics have to be neglected or cannot be considered in an appropriate way. In a case study in Saxony, we developed an approach to (i) derive representative regional crop rotations by combining different data sources and expert knowledge. This includes the integration of innovative crop sequences related to bio-energy production or organic farming and different soil tillage, soil management and soil protection techniques. Furthermore, (ii) we developed a regionalization approach for transferring crop rotations and related soil management strategies on the basis of statistical data and spatially explicit data taken from so called field blocks. These field blocks are the smallest spatial entity for which agricultural practices must be reported to apply for agricultural funding within the frame of the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) program. The information was finally integrated into the spatial decision support tool GISCAME to assess and visualize in spatially explicit manner the impact of alternative agricultural land use strategies on soil erosion risk and ecosystem services provision. Objective of this paper is to present the approach how to create spatially explicit information on agricultural management practices for a study area around Dresden, the capital of the German Federal State Saxony. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Finger millet: An alternative crop for the Southern High Plains

    Science.gov (United States)

    In the Southern High Plains, dairies are expanding to take advantage of favorable climatic conditions. Currently, corn (Zea mays L.) and forage sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] are the two major crops grown in the region to meet silage demands for the expanding dairy industry, but they have rel...

  17. Improving the efficiency of spatially selective operations for agricultural robotics in cropping field

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. L. Li

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Cropping fields often have well-defined poor-performing patches due to spatial and temporal variability. In an attempt to increase crop performance on poor patches, spatially selective field operations may be performed by agricultural robotics to apply additional inputs with targeted requirements. This paper addresses the route planning problem for an agricultural robot that has to treat some poor-patches in a field with row crops, with respect to the minimization of the total non-working distance travelled during headland turnings and in-field travel distance. The traversal of patches in the field is expressed as the traversal of a mixed weighted graph, and then the problem of finding an optimal patch sequence is formulated as an asymmetric traveling salesman problem and solved by the partheno-genetic algorithm. The proposed method is applied on a cropping field located in Northwestern China. Research results show that by using optimum patch sequences, the total non-working distance travelled during headland turnings and in-field travel distance can be reduced. But the savings on the non-working distance inside the field interior depend on the size and location of patches in the field, and the introduction of agricultural robotics is beneficial to increase field efficiency.

  18. Development Procedure in Mutation Induction and Tracer Technique for Good Agriculture Practices for Under used Crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Faiz Ahmad; Rusli Ibrahim; Khairuddin Abdul Rahim

    2015-01-01

    Under used crops are those crop species which have high potential value in the supply of important raw material for secondary economy sector in food processing. The yield production of new Under used crops varieties can be used as an important input in food production process for export products. The optimum production cost can be minimized since the price of raw material supplied from agriculture sector is cheaper compared with the international markets. Agriculture output can be increased through the development of Under used crops using radiation mutagenesis and tracer technique for good agricultural practices. This paper work will discuss the development procedure of mutation induction method which includes irradiation of samples such as seeds of groundnut and in vitro shoots of banana using gamma rays and application of N-15 for nutrient use efficiency and screening of potential mutant lines with high yield and resistance to drought. These management practices using established procedures of water and nutrient use efficiency will be recommended to the growers. (author)

  19. Improving the efficiency of spatially selective operations for agricultural robotics in cropping field

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Y. L.; Yi, S. P.

    2013-05-01

    Cropping fields often have well-defined poor-performing patches due to spatial and temporal variability. In an attempt to increase crop performance on poor patches, spatially selective field operations may be performed by agricultural robotics to apply additional inputs with targeted requirements. This paper addresses the route planning problem for an agricultural robot that has to treat some poor-patches in a field with row crops, with respect to the minimization of the total non-working distance travelled during headland turnings and in-field travel distance. The traversal of patches in the field is expressed as the traversal of a mixed weighted graph, and then the problem of finding an optimal patch sequence is formulated as an asymmetric traveling salesman problem and solved by the parthenogenetic algorithm. The proposed method is applied on a cropping field located in Northwestern China. Research results show that by using optimum patch sequences, the total non-working distance travelled during headland turnings and in-field travel distance can be reduced. But the savings on the non-working distance inside the field interior depend on the size and location of patches in the field, and the introduction of agricultural robotics is beneficial to increase field efficiency. (Author) 21 refs.

  20. Landscape configurational heterogeneity by small-scale agriculture, not crop diversity, maintains pollinators and plant reproduction in western Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hass, Annika L; Kormann, Urs G; Tscharntke, Teja; Clough, Yann; Baillod, Aliette Bosem; Sirami, Clélia; Fahrig, Lenore; Martin, Jean-Louis; Baudry, Jacques; Bertrand, Colette; Bosch, Jordi; Brotons, Lluís; Burel, Françoise; Georges, Romain; Giralt, David; Marcos-García, María Á; Ricarte, Antonio; Siriwardena, Gavin; Batáry, Péter

    2018-02-14

    Agricultural intensification is one of the main causes for the current biodiversity crisis. While reversing habitat loss on agricultural land is challenging, increasing the farmland configurational heterogeneity (higher field border density) and farmland compositional heterogeneity (higher crop diversity) has been proposed to counteract some habitat loss. Here, we tested whether increased farmland configurational and compositional heterogeneity promote wild pollinators and plant reproduction in 229 landscapes located in four major western European agricultural regions. High-field border density consistently increased wild bee abundance and seed set of radish ( Raphanus sativus ), probably through enhanced connectivity. In particular, we demonstrate the importance of crop-crop borders for pollinator movement as an additional experiment showed higher transfer of a pollen analogue along crop-crop borders than across fields or along semi-natural crop borders. By contrast, high crop diversity reduced bee abundance, probably due to an increase of crop types with particularly intensive management. This highlights the importance of crop identity when higher crop diversity is promoted. Our results show that small-scale agricultural systems can boost pollinators and plant reproduction. Agri-environmental policies should therefore aim to halt and reverse the current trend of increasing field sizes and to reduce the amount of crop types with particularly intensive management. © 2018 The Author(s).

  1. Occurrence of chemical contaminants in peri-urban agricultural irrigation waters and assessment of their phytotoxicity and crop productivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margenat, Anna; Matamoros, Víctor; Díez, Sergi; Cañameras, Núria; Comas, Jordi; Bayona, Josep M

    2017-12-01

    Water scarcity and water pollution have increased the pressure on water resources worldwide. This pressure is particularly important in highly populated areas where water demand exceeds the available natural resources. In this regard, water reuse has emerged as an excellent water source alternative for peri-urban agriculture. Nevertheless, it must cope with the occurrence of chemical contaminants, ranging from trace elements (TEs) to organic microcontaminants. In this study, chemical contaminants (i.e., 15 TEs, 34 contaminants of emerging concern (CECs)), bulk parameters, and nutrients from irrigation waters and crop productivity (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. cv. Bodar and Lactuca sativa L. cv. Batavia) were seasonally surveyed in 4 farm plots in the peri-urban area of the city of Barcelona. A pristine site, where rain-groundwater is used for irrigation, was selected for background concentrations. The average concentration levels of TEs and CECs in the irrigation water impacted by treated wastewater (TWW) were 3 (35±75μgL -1 ) and 13 (553±1050ngL -1 ) times higher than at the pristine site respectively. Principal component analysis was used to classify the irrigation waters by chemical composition. To assess the impact of the occurrence of these contaminants on agriculture, a seed germination assay (Lactuca sativa L) and real field-scale study of crop productivity (i.e., lettuce and tomato) were used. Although irrigation waters from the peri-urban area exhibited a higher frequency of detection and concentration of the assessed chemical contaminants than those of the pristine site (P1), no significant differences were found in seed phytotoxicity or crop productivity. In fact, the crops impacted by TWW showed higher productivity than the other farm plots studied, which was associated with the higher nutrient availability for plants. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. 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.

  3. Standing crops and ecology of aquatic invertebrates in agricultural drainwater ponds in California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Euliss, N.H.; Jarvis, R.L.; Gilmer, D.S.

    1991-01-01

    We examined standing crops and ecology of aquatic invertebrates in agricultural drainwater evaporation ponds in California from October 1982 to March 1983 and September 1983 to March 1984. Evaporation ponds supported low diversities but high standing crops of aquatic invertebrates. A water boatman (Trichocorixa reticulata) and a midge (Tanypus grodhausi) were the most abundant invertebrates, constituting 44.9% and 51.4% of total macroinvertebrate biomass. Regression models indicated that of 6 environmental variables measured, only electrical conductivity (EC) and Julian date affected biomass and density of water boatmen. EC was the only significant correlate of midge biomass in evaporation ponds.

  4. E-precision agriculture for small scale cash crops in Tobasa regency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putra Simanjuntak, Panca; Tiurniari Napitupulu, Pangeran; Pratama Silalahi, Soni; Kisno; Pasaribu, Norlina; Valešová, Libuše

    2017-09-01

    Cash crop is a promising sector in Tobasa regency; however, the trend showed a negative change of the cash crop production in. This research aims to develop an application which is based on Arduino for watering and fertilizing corn land. The result of using e-precision agriculture based on embedded system is 100% higher than the conventional one and the risk of harvesting failure using the embedded system decreased to 50%. Embedded system in this study acquired critical environment measurements which at last affected the yield raising and risk reduction. As the result, the use of e-precision agriculture provided a framework to be used by different stakeholders to implement e-agriculture platform that supports marketing of agricultural production since the system is proven to save the material and time which finally reduces the risk of harvesting failure and increases the yield. In other words, the system is able to economize the use of water and fertilizer on a small corn land. The system will be developed for more efficiency in material loss and the mobile-based application development to reach sustainable rural development particularly for cash-crop farmers.

  5. Estimated effects of radioactive fallout on agricultural production in Sweden. Contamination of crop products

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eriksson, Aake; Loensjoe, H.; Karlstroem, F.

    1994-01-01

    The study is part of a research project, 'Radioactivity problems within the food sector' performed in 1991-94 at the request of the National Board of Agriculture in Sweden by The National Research Establishment, Dept. of NBC Defence, and the Dept. of Radioecology and the Dept. of Biosystems and Technology, the latter two belonging to the Swedish Univ. of Agricultural Sciences. The aim of the study was to investigate the contamination levels that may occur in agricultural crop products in Sweden in a situation of radioactive fallout from the use of nuclear weapons. There is a risk for a major nuclide transport in agricultural systems by the feeds, mainly by pasture grass and silage and hay crops but also to some extent by grain crops. For that reason, cattle are expected to be important vectors of the fallout nuclides to the human diet, particularly in milk from dairy cattle but also in beef. The activity transport by grain to pig products may also be of some importance. 8 refs, 7 figs, 25 tabs

  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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, S.; Kazi, T.G.; Kolachi, N.F.; Afridi, H.I.

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the mobility and transport of Aluminum (AI) 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 AI. The total and bio available fractions (deionized water, 0.11 M CH/sub 3/COOH, 0.05 M ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDT A) 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 All content in lake and canal water samples was found in the range of 750 - 1340 and 90 - 50 micro g/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 can water (SICW) had low level of A] (p< O.OI). 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 A] contaminated lake water. (author)

  8. Renewable energy from pyrolysis using crops and agricultural residuals: An economic and environmental evaluation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kung, Chih-Chun; Zhang, Ning

    2015-01-01

    This study examines pyrolysis-based electricity generation and ethanol production using various crops and agricultural residuals in Taiwan. It analyzes the net economic and environmental effects within the framework of the Extended Taiwanese Agricultural Sector Model by incorporating ongoing and potential gasoline, coal and GHG (greenhouse gas) prices. The study discusses the effects of agricultural shifts, which have several important implications for the Taiwanese bioenergy development. First, the cost of collecting rice straw is much lower than the production cost of other energy crops, implying that the efficient use of agricultural waste may eventually result in positive social effects in terms of farmers' revenue, the renewable energy supply and GHG emissions offset. Second, farmers with idle land usually suffer a lower steady income. Encouraging the development of the renewable energy industry increases the demand of raw feedstocks, which involves converting the idle land into cultivation and increasing farmers' revenue. Third, agricultural waste is usually burned and emits CO_2, which accelerates the global climate shift. Approximately one third of emissions could be offset by rice straw-based bioenergy in certain cases. Turning this waste into bioenergy, which offsets net GHG emissions, has positive effects on the climate change mitigation. - Highlights: • Pyrolyzing rice straw provides considerable energy supply (max 4.68 billion kWh). • High emission offset when combined with rice straw (max 2.73 million tons). • Affordable government subsidy ($204 million a year). • Collection and transportation costs of wastes could impact the result significantly.

  9. 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.

  10. Time to Redefine Organic Agriculture: Can't GM Crops Be Certified as Organics?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husaini, Amjad M; Sohail, Muhammad

    2018-01-01

    The challenges of sustainable food production without damaging the environment for a growing human population have increased considerably. The current agricultural practices involving chemical fertilizers and even organic farming are not sustainable in the long run and can have deleterious effects on the environment. Thus, new, innovative solutions need to be identified and propagated for tackling this. Among such innovations, that can complement conventional as well as organic farming methods, are genetic modification (GM) and aquaculture. Yet, GM technologies often face resistance from civil groups owing to an 'unknown' fear, akin to Frankenstein's monster. How real is this fear? Our discussion rests on basic questions like, why can't 'organics' include GM crops that do not require chemical inputs for cultivation, and can GM crops like Golden rice qualify to be 'organic' if cultivated through organic practices? Do we need to rethink organic agriculture in the context of the present and future challenges of 21st century?

  11. 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.

  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. State Run Crop Insurance as a PPublic Policy in Accelerating Agricultural Growth in Developing Countries

    OpenAIRE

    Ahsan, Syed M.; Rashid, Salim

    1983-01-01

    Modern varieties of agricultural crops, commonly referred to as high yielding varieties (HYVs), are being increasingly looked upon as a major source of the additional foodgrain required to attain self-sufficiency in a number of Third World countries. In spite of the demonstrated productivity gains with HYVs, the adoption rate has been rather disappointing in many of those countries. Part of the reason behind the farmer's reluctance must arise from the unfamiliarity and high costs of the new t...

  14. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adenle, Ademola A

    2011-10-08

    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.

  16. 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.

  17. Fabrication Of Biogenic Silver Nanoparticles Using Agricultural Crop Plant Leaf Extracts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajani, P.; SriSindhura, K.; Prasad, T. N. V. K. V.; Hussain, O. M.; Sudhakar, P.; Latha, P.; Balakrishna, M.; Kambala, V.; Reddy, K. Raja

    2010-10-01

    Nanoparticles are being viewed as fundamental building blocks of nanotechnology. Biosynthesis of nanoparticles by plant extracts is currently under exploitation. Use of agricultural crop plant extracts for synthesis of metal nanoparticles would add a new dimension to the agricultural sector in the utilization of crop waste. Silver has long been recognized as having an inhibitory effect towards many bacterial strains and microorganisms commonly present in medical and industrial processes. Four pulse crop plants and three cereal crop plants (Vigna radiata, Arachis hypogaea, Cyamopsis tetragonolobus, Zea mays, Pennisetum glaucum, Sorghum vulgare) were used and compared for their extra cellular synthesis of metallic silver nanoparticles. Stable silver nanoparticles were formed by treating aqueous solution of AgNO3 with the plant leaf extracts as reducing agent at temperatures 50 °C-95 °C. UV-Visible spectroscopy was utilized to monitor the formation of silver nanoparticles. XRD analysis of formed silver nanoparticles revealed face centered cubic structure with (111), (200), (220) and (311) planes. SEM and EDAX analysis confirm the size of the formed silver nanoparticles to be in the range of 50-200 nm. Our proposed work offers a enviro-friendly method for biogenic silver nanoparticles production. This could provide a faster synthesis rate comparable to those of chemical methods and potentially be used in areas such as cosmetics, food and medical applications.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Midwestern US Farmers Perceive Crop Advisers as Conduits of Information on Agricultural Conservation Practices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eanes, Francis R; Singh, Ajay S; Bulla, Brian R; Ranjan, Pranay; Prokopy, Linda S; Fales, Mary; Wickerham, Benjamin; Doran, Patrick J

    2017-11-01

    Nonpoint source pollution from agricultural land uses continues to pose one of the most significant threats to water quality in the US, with measurable impacts across local, regional, and national scales. The impact and the influence of targeted conservation efforts are directly related to the degree to which farmers are familiar with and trust the entities providing the information and/or outreach. Recent research suggests that farmers consistently rank independent and retail-affiliated crop advisers as among the most trusted and influential sources for agronomic information, but little is understood about whether farmers are willing to receive advice from crop advisers on the use of practices that conserve soil and water, and, if so, whether crop advisers will be perceived as influential. We present survey data from farmers (n = 1461) in Michigan's Saginaw Bay (Lake Huron) watershed to explore these questions. Results suggest that farmers view crop advisers as trustworthy sources of information about conservation, and influential on management practices that have large conservation implications. We discuss these results, along with perceived barriers and opportunities to crop advisers partnering with traditional conservation agencies to enhance the impact of voluntary conservation programs.

  1. Midwestern US Farmers Perceive Crop Advisers as Conduits of Information on Agricultural Conservation Practices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eanes, Francis R.; Singh, Ajay S.; Bulla, Brian R.; Ranjan, Pranay; Prokopy, Linda S.; Fales, Mary; Wickerham, Benjamin; Doran, Patrick J.

    2017-11-01

    Nonpoint source pollution from agricultural land uses continues to pose one of the most significant threats to water quality in the US, with measurable impacts across local, regional, and national scales. The impact and the influence of targeted conservation efforts are directly related to the degree to which farmers are familiar with and trust the entities providing the information and/or outreach. Recent research suggests that farmers consistently rank independent and retail-affiliated crop advisers as among the most trusted and influential sources for agronomic information, but little is understood about whether farmers are willing to receive advice from crop advisers on the use of practices that conserve soil and water, and, if so, whether crop advisers will be perceived as influential. We present survey data from farmers ( n = 1461) in Michigan's Saginaw Bay (Lake Huron) watershed to explore these questions. Results suggest that farmers view crop advisers as trustworthy sources of information about conservation, and influential on management practices that have large conservation implications. We discuss these results, along with perceived barriers and opportunities to crop advisers partnering with traditional conservation agencies to enhance the impact of voluntary conservation programs.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanegraaf, M.C.; Van Kuik, M.; Van Zeijts, H.

    1998-07-01

    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

  3. Using a decision support system to optimize production of agricultural crop residue Biofeedstock

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hoskinson, Reed L.; Rope, Ronald C.; Fink, Raymond K.

    2007-01-01

    For several years the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) has been developing a Decision Support System for Agriculture (DSS4Ag) which determines the economically optimum recipe of various fertilizers to apply at each site in a field to produce a crop, based on the existing soil fertility at each site, as well as historic production information and current prices of fertilizers and the forecast market price of the crop at harvest. In support of the growing interest in agricultural crop residues as a bioenergy feedstock, we have extended the capability of the DSS4Ag to develop a variable-rate fertilizer recipe for the simultaneous economically optimum production of both grain and straw. In this paper we report the results of 2 yr of field research testing and enhancing the DSS4Ag's ability to economically optimize the fertilization for the simultaneous production of both grain and its straw, where the straw is an agricultural crop residue that can be used as a biofeedstock. For both years, the DSS4Ag reduced the cost and amount of fertilizers used and increased grower profit, while reducing the biomass produced. The DSS4Ag results show that when a biorefinery infrastructure is in place and growers have a strong market for their straw it is not economically advantageous to increase fertilization in order to try to produce more straw. This suggests that other solutions, such as single-pass selective harvest, must be implemented to meet national goals for the amount of biomass that will be available for collection and use for bioenergy. (author)

  4. Cover Crops and Fertilization Alter Nitrogen Loss in Organic and Conventional Conservation Agriculture Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelton, Rebecca E.; Jacobsen, Krista L.; McCulley, Rebecca L.

    2018-01-01

    Agroecosystem nitrogen (N) loss produces greenhouse gases, induces eutrophication, and is costly for farmers; therefore, conservation agricultural management practices aimed at reducing N loss are increasingly adopted. However, the ecosystem consequences of these practices have not been well-studied. We quantified N loss via leaching, NH3 volatilization, N2O emissions, and N retention in plant and soil pools of corn conservation agroecosystems in Kentucky, USA. Three systems were evaluated: (1) an unfertilized, organic system with cover crops hairy vetch (Vicia villosa), winter wheat (Triticum aestivum), or a mix of the two (bi-culture); (2) an organic system with a hairy vetch cover crop employing three fertilization schemes (0 N, organic N, or a fertilizer N-credit approach); and (3) a conventional system with a winter wheat cover crop and three fertilization schemes (0 N, urea N, or organic N). In the unfertilized organic system, cover crop species affected NO3-N leaching (vetch > bi-culture > wheat) and N2O-N emissions and yield during corn growth (vetch, bi-culture > wheat). Fertilization increased soil inorganic N, gaseous N loss, N leaching, and yield in the organic vetch and conventional wheat systems. Fertilizer scheme affected the magnitude of growing season N2O-N loss in the organic vetch system (organic N > fertilizer N-credit) and the timing of loss (organic N delayed N2O-N loss vs. urea) and NO3-N leaching (urea >> organic N) in the conventional wheat system, but had no effect on yield. Cover crop selection and N fertilization techniques can reduce N leaching and greenhouse gas emissions without sacrificing yield, thereby enhancing N conservation in both organic and conventional conservation agriculture systems. PMID:29403512

  5. Cover Crops and Fertilization Alter Nitrogen Loss in Organic and Conventional Conservation Agriculture Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca E. Shelton

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Agroecosystem nitrogen (N loss produces greenhouse gases, induces eutrophication, and is costly for farmers; therefore, conservation agricultural management practices aimed at reducing N loss are increasingly adopted. However, the ecosystem consequences of these practices have not been well-studied. We quantified N loss via leaching, NH3 volatilization, N2O emissions, and N retention in plant and soil pools of corn conservation agroecosystems in Kentucky, USA. Three systems were evaluated: (1 an unfertilized, organic system with cover crops hairy vetch (Vicia villosa, winter wheat (Triticum aestivum, or a mix of the two (bi-culture; (2 an organic system with a hairy vetch cover crop employing three fertilization schemes (0 N, organic N, or a fertilizer N-credit approach; and (3 a conventional system with a winter wheat cover crop and three fertilization schemes (0 N, urea N, or organic N. In the unfertilized organic system, cover crop species affected NO3-N leaching (vetch > bi-culture > wheat and N2O-N emissions and yield during corn growth (vetch, bi-culture > wheat. Fertilization increased soil inorganic N, gaseous N loss, N leaching, and yield in the organic vetch and conventional wheat systems. Fertilizer scheme affected the magnitude of growing season N2O-N loss in the organic vetch system (organic N > fertilizer N-credit and the timing of loss (organic N delayed N2O-N loss vs. urea and NO3-N leaching (urea >> organic N in the conventional wheat system, but had no effect on yield. Cover crop selection and N fertilization techniques can reduce N leaching and greenhouse gas emissions without sacrificing yield, thereby enhancing N conservation in both organic and conventional conservation agriculture systems.

  6. Mapping of Agricultural Crops from Single High-Resolution Multispectral Images—Data-Driven Smoothing vs. Parcel-Based Smoothing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asli Ozdarici-Ok

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Mapping agricultural crops is an important application of remote sensing. However, in many cases it is based either on hyperspectral imagery or on multitemporal coverage, both of which are difficult to scale up to large-scale deployment at high spatial resolution. In the present paper, we evaluate the possibility of crop classification based on single images from very high-resolution (VHR satellite sensors. The main objective of this work is to expose performance difference between state-of-the-art parcel-based smoothing and purely data-driven conditional random field (CRF smoothing, which is yet unknown. To fulfill this objective, we perform extensive tests with four different classification methods (Support Vector Machines, Random Forest, Gaussian Mixtures, and Maximum Likelihood to compute the pixel-wise data term; and we also test two different definitions of the pairwise smoothness term. We have performed a detailed evaluation on different multispectral VHR images (Ikonos, QuickBird, Kompsat-2. The main finding of this study is that pairwise CRF smoothing comes close to the state-of-the-art parcel-based method that requires parcel boundaries (average difference ≈ 2.5%. Our results indicate that a single multispectral (R, G, B, NIR image is enough to reach satisfactory classification accuracy for six crop classes (corn, pasture, rice, sugar beet, wheat, and tomato in Mediterranean climate. Overall, it appears that crop mapping using only one-shot VHR imagery taken at the right time may be a viable alternative, especially since high-resolution multitemporal or hyperspectral coverage as well as parcel boundaries are in practice often not available.

  7. 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

  8. Use of composts to improve soil properties and crop productivity under low input agricultural system in West Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ouédraogo, E.; Mando, A.; Zombré, N.P.

    2000-01-01

    Lack of adequate nutrient supply and poor soil structure are the principal constraints to crop production under low input agriculture systems of West Africa. Experiments at two sites (Mediga and Yimtenga) were conducted in Burkina Faso to assess the impact of compost on improving crop production and

  9. Monitoring and predicting crop growth and analysing agricultural ecosystems by remote sensing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tsuyoshi Akiyama

    1996-05-01

    Full Text Available LANDSAT/TM data, which are characterized by high spectral/spatial resolutions, are able to contribute to practical agricultural management. In the first part of the paper, the authors review some recent applications of satellite remote sensing in agriculture. Techniques for crop discrimination and mapping have made such rapid progress that we can classify crop types with more than 80% accuracy. The estimation of crop biomass using satellite data, including leaf area, dry and fresh weights, and the prediction of grain yield, has been attempted using various spectral vegetation indices. Plant stresses caused by nutrient deficiency and water deficit have also been analysed successfully. Such information may be useful for farm management. In the latter half of the paper, we introduce the Arctic Science Project, which was carried out under the Science and Technology Agency of Japan collaborating with Finnish scientists. In this project, monitoring of the boreal forest was carried out using LANDSAT data. Changes in the phenology of subarctic ground vegetation, based on spectral properties, were measured by a boom-mounted, four-band spectroradiometer. The turning point dates of the seasonal near-infrared (NIR and red (R reflectance factors might indicate the end of growth and the beginning of autumnal tints, respectively.

  10. 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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Robson, T.C.; Braungardt, C.B.; Rieuwerts, J.; Worsfold, P.

    2014-01-01

    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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2011-01-01

    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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Virtual water flows and water-footprint of agricultural crop production, import and export: A case study for Israel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shtull-Trauring, E; Bernstein, N

    2018-05-01

    Agriculture is the largest global consumer of freshwater. As the volume of international trade continues to rise, so does the understanding that trade of water-intensive crops from areas with high precipitation, to arid regions can help mitigate water scarcity, highlighting the importance of crop water accounting. Virtual-Water, or Water-Footprint [WF] of agricultural crops, is a powerful indicator for assessing the extent of water use by plants, contamination of water bodies by agricultural practices and trade between countries, which underlies any international trade of crops. Most available studies of virtual-water flows by import/export of agricultural commodities were based on global databases, which are considered to be of limited accuracy. The present study analyzes the WF of crop production, import, and export on a country level, using Israel as a case study, comparing data from two high-resolution local databases and two global datasets. Results for local datasets demonstrate a WF of ~1200Million Cubic Meters [MCM]/year) for total crop production, ~1000MCM/year for import and ~250MCM/year for export. Fruits and vegetables comprise ~80% of Export WF (~200MCM/year), ~50% of crop production and only ~20% of the imports. Economic Water Productivity [EWP] ($/m 3 ) for fruits and vegetables is 1.5 higher compared to other crops. Moreover, the results based on local and global datasets varied significantly, demonstrating the importance of developing high-resolution local datasets based on local crop coefficients. Performing high resolution WF analysis can help in developing agricultural policies that include support for low WF/high EWP and limit high WF/low EWP crop export, where water availability is limited. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Hydrological Responses of Weather Conditions and Crop Change of Agricultural Area in the Rincon Valley, New Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahn, S.; Sheng, Z.; Abudu, S.

    2017-12-01

    Hydrologic cycle of agricultural area has been changing due to the impacts of climate and land use changes (crop coverage changes) in an arid region of Rincon Valley, New Mexico. This study is to evaluate the impacts of weather condition and crop coverage change on hydrologic behavior of agricultural area in Rincon Valley (2,466km2) for agricultural watershed management using a watershed-scale hydrologic model, SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool). The SWAT model was developed to incorporate irrigation of different crops using auto irrigation function. For the weather condition and crop coverage change evaluation, three spatial crop coverages including a normal (2008), wet (2009), and dry (2011) years were prepared using USDA crop data layer (CDL) for fourteen different crops. The SWAT model was calibrated for the period of 2001-2003 and validated for the period of 2004-2006 using daily-observed streamflow data. Scenario analysis was performed for wet and dry years based on the unique combinations of crop coverages and releases from Caballo Reservoir. The SWAT model simulated the present vertical water budget and horizontal water transfer considering irrigation practices in the Rincon Valley. Simulation results indicated the temporal and spatial variability for irrigation and non-irrigation seasons of hydrologic cycle in agricultural area in terms of surface runoff, evapotranspiration, infiltration, percolation, baseflow, soil moisture, and groundwater recharge. The water supply of the dry year could not fully cover whole irrigation period due to dry weather conditions, resulting in reduction of crop acreage. For extreme weather conditions, the temporal variation of water budget became robust, which requires careful irrigation management of the agricultural area. The results could provide guidelines for farmers to decide crop patterns in response to different weather conditions and water availability.

  17. Forecast of strontium 90 accumulation in the crop of agricultural cultures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dergunov, I.D.; Moroz, V.D.

    1980-01-01

    A possibility to determine the level of contamination with strontium-90 of agricultural crops according to its content in young plants as studied. The investigations have been carried out under conditions of vegetational experiment with cotton on light, typical, dark grey soils and meadow spoils. The samples in the phase of 20 day old plants and in the period of ripening have been selected for radiometric analysis. Activity has been measured according to β-irradiation of nuclide. Tbe measurement results point to the existence of certain connection between radiostrontium content in young plants and in the fibre crops. Close connection is also found between strontium-90 content in young plants and in the cotton seeds. Direct proportional dependence between strontium-90 content in young and grown-up plants is established. Linear coefficients for cotton are obtained which can be used for forecasting the level of cotton fibre contamination with radiostrontium according to its content in 20 day old plants

  18. Viruses and their significance in agricultural and horticultural crops in Finland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. TAPIO

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper reviews the plant viruses and virus vectors that have been detected in agricultural and horticultural crop plants and some weeds in Finland. The historical and current importance of virus diseases and the methods used for controlling them in cereals, potato, berry plants, fruit trees, ornamental plants and vegetables are discussed. Plant viruses have been intensely studied in Finland over 40 years. Up to date, 44 plant virus species have been detected, and many tentatively identified virus-es are also reported. Control of many virus diseases has been significantly improved. This has been achieved mainly through changes in cropping systems, production of healthy seed potatoes and healthy stocks of berry plants, fruit trees and ornamental plants in the institutes set up for such production, and improved hygiene. At the present, barley yellow dwarf luteovirus, potato Y potyvirus and potato mop-top furovirus are considred to be economically the most harmful plant viruses in Finland.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Delmas, J.

    1977-01-01

    The transfer rates of 90 Sr, 137 Cs, 54 Mn, 65 Zn, 60 Co and 22 Na 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 [fr

  20. The Urban Food-Water Nexus: Modeling Water Footprints of Urban Agriculture using CityCrop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tooke, T. R.; Lathuilliere, M. J.; Coops, N. C.; Johnson, M. S.

    2014-12-01

    Urban agriculture provides a potential contribution towards more sustainable food production and mitigating some of the human impacts that accompany volatility in regional and global food supply. When considering the capacity of urban landscapes to produce food products, the impact of urban water demand required for food production in cities is often neglected. Urban agricultural studies also tend to be undertaken at broad spatial scales, overlooking the heterogeneity of urban form that exerts an extreme influence on the urban energy balance. As a result, urban planning and management practitioners require, but often do not have, spatially explicit and detailed information to support informed urban agricultural policy, especially as it relates to potential conflicts with sustainability goals targeting water-use. In this research we introduce a new model, CityCrop, a hybrid evapotranspiration-plant growth model that incorporates detailed digital representations of the urban surface and biophysical impacts of the built environment and urban trees to account for the daily variations in net surface radiation. The model enables very fine-scale (sub-meter) estimates of water footprints of potential urban agricultural production. Results of the model are demonstrated for an area in the City of Vancouver, Canada and compared to aspatial model estimates, demonstrating the unique considerations and sensitivities for current and future water footprints of urban agriculture and the implications for urban water planning and policy.

  1. Alternative Approaches to Food: Community Supported Agriculture in Urban China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kees Krul

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available One of the most remarkable features of China’s development path is its large-scale and fast-paced urbanization. As cities already accommodate more than half of China’s population, new challenges to urban food systems have emerged concurrently. Concerns over environmental degradation and food safety have provoked growing dissatisfaction with China’s food regime. Amidst these concerns, the aim of this paper is to study the role of new and alternative approaches to food, focusing in on the question of how community supported agriculture (CSA can deal with the food-related issues emerging from China’s development. The paper adopts Granovetter’s notions of social embeddedness to describe CSA’s relational role in consumer-farmer dynamics, as well as the structural role within its broader relational context. Empirical data is drawn from surveys distributed among CSA farms, and interviews with key stakeholders in the Chinese CSA movement. The study finds that the model of CSA demonstrates an innovative approach to deal with food safety issues, address sustainability, and operate in an environment where future food demands are most critical. Although the movement’s structural embeddedness is bound by several limitations and contradictions, it is argued that the CSA model offers important insights and adds value into ameliorating China’s food systems.

  2. Agricultural interventions for water saving and crop yield improvement, in a Mediterranean area - an experimental design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morianou, Giasemi; Kourgialas, Nektarios; Psarras, George; Koubouris, George; Arampatzis, George; Karatzas, George; Pavlidou, Elisavet

    2017-04-01

    This work is a part of LIFE+ AGROCLIMAWATER project and the aim is to improve the water efficiency, increase the adaptive capacity of tree corps and save water, in a Mediterranean area, under different climatic conditions and agricultural practices. The experimental design as well as preliminary results at farm and river basin scales are presented in this work. Specifically, ten (10) pilot farms, both organic and conventional ones have been selected in the sub-basin of Platanias in western Crete - Greece. These ten pilot farms were selected representing the most typical crops in Platanias area (olive trees and citrus trees), as well as the typical soil, landscape and agricultural practices differentiation for each crop (field slope, water availability, soil type, management regime). From the ten pilot farms, eight were olive farms and the rest two citrus. This proportion correspond adequacy to the presentence of olive and citrus crops in the extended area of Platanias prefecture. Each of the ten pilot farm has been divided in two parts, the first one will be used as a control part, while the other one as the demonstration part where the interventions will be applied. The action plans for each selected farm are based on the following groups of possible interventions: a) reduction of water evaporation losses from soil surface, b) reduction of transpiration water losses through winter pruning and summer pruning, c) reduction of deep percolation water and nutrient losses, d) reduction of surface runoff, e) measures in order to maximize the efficiency of irrigation and f) rationalization of fertilizers and agrochemicals utilized. Preliminary results indicate that water saving and crop yield can be significantly improved based on the above innervations both at farm and river basin scale.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

    2017-02-01

    CropWatch agroclimatic indicators (CWAIs) are a monitoring tool developed by the CropWatch global crop monitoring system in the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS; http://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).

  6. 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

    2017-02-01

    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).

  7. 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

  8. Assessing Climate Risk on Agricultural Production: Insights Using Retrospective Analysis of Crop Insurance and Climatic Trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes, J. J.; Elias, E.; Eischens, A.; Shilts, M.; Rango, A.; Steele, R.

    2017-12-01

    The collaborative synthesis of existing datasets, such as long-term climate observations and farmers' crop insurance payments, can increase their overall collective value and societal application. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Climate Hubs were created to develop and deliver science-based information and technologies to agricultural and natural resource managers to enable climate-informed decision-making. As part of this mission, Hubs work across USDA and other climate service agencies to synthesize existing information. The USDA Risk Management Agency (RMA) is responsible for overseeing the Federal crop insurance program which currently insures over $100 billion in crops annually. RMA hosts data describing the cause for loss (e.g. drought, wind, irrigation failure) and indemnity amount (i.e. total cost of loss) at multiple spatio-temporal scales (i.e. state, county, year, month). The objective of this paper is to link climate information with indemnities, and their associated cause of loss, to assess climate risk on agricultural production and provide regionally-relevant information to stakeholders to promote resilient working landscapes. We performed a retrospective trend analysis at the state-level for the American Southwest (SW). First, we assessed indemnity-only trends by cause of loss and crop type at varying temporal scales. Historical monthly weather data (i.e. precipitation and temperature) and long-term drought indices (e.g. Palmer Drought Severity Index) were then linked with indemnities and grouped by different causes of loss. Climatological ranks were used to integrate historical comparative intensity of acute and long-term climatic events. Heat and drought as causes of loss were most correlated with temperature and drought indicators, respectively. Across all SW states increasing indemnities were correlated with warmer conditions. Multiple statistical trend analyses suggest a framework is necessary to appropriately measure the biophysical

  9. EVALUATING THE IMPACT OF POLICY OPTIONS ON AGRICULTURAL LANDSCAPES: AN ALTERNATIVE-FUTURES APPROACH

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alternative-futures analysis was used to analyze different scenarios of future growth patterns and attendant resource allocations on the agricultural system of Oregon's Willamette River Basin. A stakeholder group formulated three policy alternatives: a continuation of current tr...

  10. 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

  11. The global impact of ozone on agricultural crop yields under current and future air quality legislation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Dingenen, Rita; Dentener, Frank J.; Raes, Frank; Krol, Maarten C.; Emberson, Lisa; Cofala, Janusz

    In this paper we evaluate the global impact of surface ozone on four types of agricultural crop. The study is based on modelled global hourly ozone fields for the year 2000 and 2030, using the global 1°×1° 2-way nested atmospheric chemical transport model (TM5). Projections for the year 2030 are based on the relatively optimistic "current legislation (CLE) scenario", i.e. assuming that currently approved air quality legislation will be fully implemented by the year 2030, without a further development of new abatement policies. For both runs, the relative yield loss due to ozone damage is evaluated based on two different indices (accumulated concentration above a 40 ppbV threshold and seasonal mean daytime ozone concentration respectively) on a global, regional and national scale. The cumulative metric appears to be far less robust than the seasonal mean, while the seasonal mean shows satisfactory agreement with measurements in Europe, the US, China and Southern India and South-East Asia. Present day global relative yield losses are estimated to range between 7% and 12% for wheat, between 6% and 16% for soybean, between 3% and 4% for rice, and between 3% and 5% for maize (range resulting from different metrics used). Taking into account possible biases in our assessment, introduced through the global application of "western" crop exposure-response functions, and through model performance in reproducing ozone-exposure metrics, our estimates may be considered as being conservative. Under the 2030 CLE scenario, the global situation is expected to deteriorate mainly for wheat (additional 2-6% loss globally) and rice (additional 1-2% loss globally). India, for which no mitigation measures have been assumed by 2030, accounts for 50% of these global increase in crop yield loss. On a regional-scale, significant reductions in crop losses by CLE-2030 are only predicted in Europe (soybean) and China (wheat). Translating these assumed yield losses into total global economic

  12. Retention of simulated fallout nuclides in agricultural crops. 2. Deposition of Cs and Sr on grain crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eriksson, Aake; Rosen, K.; Haak, E.

    1998-01-01

    Experiments with artificial wet depositions of 134 Cs and 85 Sr at different times during the growth period were carried out. The studies are complementary to the experiences after the Chernobyl fallout and the results are compared with similar earlier Swedish works on nuclide retention in experiments and on fallout in agriculture. The aim has been to cover the nuclide transfer to grain crops after deposition at different times during the growing period. The initial interception capacity per kg d.w., TRd, seemed to depend on the surface/weight ratio of the plant parts considered. Changes in TRd-values were rapid during the early growth but slower in later stages. The reduction half-time was then often 2 weeks for vegetative parts. Considering the fraction of a deposition retained, FRd, the residence half-time had an average length of 3-4 weeks. During that time there were possibilities for cesium penetration into the plant and further transfer to ears and grain. Strontium did not seem to be transferred that way. There was no increase of cesium in the ears per unit d.w. after the initial interception. However, there was a steady increase in the total content, especially after deposition during the latter half of the growth period when about 5 % was retained of cesium, and 2 % of strontium. The retention of fallout caesium in 1964 was statistically estimated to be of about the same size in Swedish grains

  13. Feasibility of Triticale (Tritico secale wittmack. X Cropping in Agricultural Lands of Gorgan County by Spatial Analysis Tools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    maral Niazmoradi

    2017-12-01

    agricultural lands of Gorgan county by spatial analysis of GIS and evaluation of environmental variables. Material and Methods One of the most important areas for crop production in Golestan province located in north of Iran, is the Gorgan region. This area is located between latitude 54° 12.9' N and 54° 44.9' N and longitude 36° 30.6' E and 36° 58.8' E.Almost every farm in Gorgan region are rainfed. In order to spatial feasibility of triticale cropping in Gorgan county, agroecological requirements of triticale was identified and classified from scientific resources. Some environmental factors including, climatic variables such as precipitation and temperature in scale of annual, monthly and seasonal, topographic variables such as elevation, slope aspects and slops percent, and some soil characteristics as texture, EC, pH, fertility, K, P and organic matter were evaluated using geostatistics and classic methods and then thematic layers were produced in ArcGIS media. In multi-criteria assessment process, one of the most important steps is to determine each criteria weight. Generally, AHP is suitable to determine the weights of assessment factors. In this respect, the first step is to construct an AHP model consisting objectives, criteria, sub-criteria, and alternatives. Then these digital layers were classified based on ecological requirements table of triticale and they were overlaid and interpolated in GIS media and final layer were classified to four classes of high suitable, suitable, less suitable and non-suitable. The suitability analysis was based on matching between land qualities/characteristics and crop requirements. It was accomplished by weighted overlay technique (WOT in GIS. Results and Discussion The results showed that 28.8 thousand ha (44.92% of agricultural lands were located in the high suitable class (S1. This zone was observed occasionally in north and northwest parts of studied region. This zone had the high fertility, high organic matter percent (2

  14. Agricultural terminology in Russian language on the Institute of field and vegetable crops example

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Savin Dragana

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Contemporary science demands that scientists are following domestic and foreign scientific and technical achievements through conference attendances and scientific and professional literature. Agricultural science is based on practical data, field experiments, but nevertheless it is essential to be up to date with the work of foreign researchers, scientific centers and institutions through their publications. The aim of this paper was to present a part of the agricultural lexicon (with the accent on the plant species names, as well as the general scientific and organizational terms with the equivalents in Russian - Serbian and Serbian - Russian, which is of the great importance in activities of Institute of Field and Vegetable Crops, presented through perennial practices of translation. Those terms are recognized as important and frequent, without wishing to go into professional divisions in agriculture as science. This paper is dedicated to the scientists who posses basic linguistic knowledge of Russian language and are starting to use Russian scientific and professional literature in agriculture, as well as students of Russian language for the purpose of establishing and widening linguistic fund.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martin-Gorriz, B.; Soto-García, M.; Martínez-Alvarez, V.

    2014-01-01

    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

  16. A study on agricultural drought vulnerability at disaggregated level in a highly irrigated and intensely cropped state of India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murthy, C S; Yadav, Manoj; Mohammed Ahamed, J; Laxman, B; Prawasi, R; Sesha Sai, M V R; Hooda, R S

    2015-03-01

    Drought is an important global hazard, challenging the sustainable agriculture and food security of nations. Measuring agricultural drought vulnerability is a prerequisite for targeting interventions to improve and sustain the agricultural performance of both irrigated and rain-fed agriculture. In this study, crop-generic agricultural drought vulnerability status is empirically measured through a composite index approach. The study area is Haryana state, India, a prime agriculture state of the country, characterised with low rainfall, high irrigation support and stable cropping pattern. By analysing the multiyear rainfall and crop condition data of kharif crop season (June-October) derived from satellite data and soil water holding capacity and groundwater quality, nine contributing indicators were generated for 120 blocks (sub-district administrative units). Composite indices for exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity components were generated after assigning variance-based weightages to the respective input indicators. Agricultural Drought Vulnerability Index (ADVI) was developed through a linear combination of the three component indices. ADVI-based vulnerability categorisation revealed that 51 blocks are with vulnerable to very highly vulnerable status. These blocks are located in the southern and western parts of the state, where groundwater quality is saline and water holding capacity of soils is less. The ADVI map has effectively captured the spatial pattern of agricultural drought vulnerability in the state. Districts with large number of vulnerable blocks showed considerably larger variability of de-trended crop yields. Correlation analysis reveals that crop condition variability, groundwater quality and soil factors are closely associated with ADVI. The vulnerability index is useful to prioritise the blocks for implementation of long-term drought management plans. There is scope for improving the methodology by adding/fine-tuning the indicators and

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mokobia, C E; Anomohanran, O

    2005-01-01

    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 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)

  18. Time to Redefine Organic Agriculture: Can’t GM Crops Be Certified as Organics?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husaini, Amjad M.; Sohail, Muhammad

    2018-01-01

    The challenges of sustainable food production without damaging the environment for a growing human population have increased considerably. The current agricultural practices involving chemical fertilizers and even organic farming are not sustainable in the long run and can have deleterious effects on the environment. Thus, new, innovative solutions need to be identified and propagated for tackling this. Among such innovations, that can complement conventional as well as organic farming methods, are genetic modification (GM) and aquaculture. Yet, GM technologies often face resistance from civil groups owing to an ‘unknown’ fear, akin to Frankenstein’s monster. How real is this fear? Our discussion rests on basic questions like, why can’t ‘organics’ include GM crops that do not require chemical inputs for cultivation, and can GM crops like Golden rice qualify to be ‘organic’ if cultivated through organic practices? Do we need to rethink organic agriculture in the context of the present and future challenges of 21st century? PMID:29692789

  19. Time to Redefine Organic Agriculture: Can’t GM Crops Be Certified as Organics?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amjad M. Husaini

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The challenges of sustainable food production without damaging the environment for a growing human population have increased considerably. The current agricultural practices involving chemical fertilizers and even organic farming are not sustainable in the long run and can have deleterious effects on the environment. Thus, new, innovative solutions need to be identified and propagated for tackling this. Among such innovations, that can complement conventional as well as organic farming methods, are genetic modification (GM and aquaculture. Yet, GM technologies often face resistance from civil groups owing to an ‘unknown’ fear, akin to Frankenstein’s monster. How real is this fear? Our discussion rests on basic questions like, why can’t ‘organics’ include GM crops that do not require chemical inputs for cultivation, and can GM crops like Golden rice qualify to be ‘organic’ if cultivated through organic practices? Do we need to rethink organic agriculture in the context of the present and future challenges of 21st century?

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Geraskin, S.A.; Dikarev, V.G.; Zyablitskaya Ye.Ya.; Oudalova, A.A.; Spirin, Ye. V; Alexakhin, R.M.

    2003-01-01

    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

  1. 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)

  2. 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.

  3. From Concept to Commerce: Developing a Successful Fungal Endophyte Inoculant for Agricultural Crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Brian R; Doohan, Fiona M; Hodkinson, Trevor R

    2018-02-11

    The development of endophyte inoculants for agricultural crops has been bedevilled by the twin problems of a lack of reliability and consistency, with a consequent lack of belief among end users in the efficacy of such treatments. We have developed a successful research pipeline for the production of a reliable, consistent and environmentally targeted fungal endophyte seed-delivered inoculant for barley cultivars. Our approach was developed de novo from an initial concept to source candidate endophyte inoculants from a wild relative of barley, Hordeum murinum (wall barley). A careful screening and selection procedure and extensive controlled environment testing of fungal endophyte strains, followed by multi-year field trials has resulted in the validation of an endophyte consortium suitable for barley crops grown on relatively dry sites. Our approach can be adapted for any crop or environment, provided that the set of first principles we have developed is followed. Here, we report how we developed the successful pipeline for the production of an economically viable fungal endophyte inoculant for barley cultivars.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mejia Gutierrez, M.

    1995-01-01

    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

  5. 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.

  6. 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 (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 were available for temperate agroforestry system, and we proposed a value of 1.01 (0.11-1.36) Mg C ha-1 y-1for C stored in soil and in the tree biomass for systems comprising 30-50 trees ha-1. Increasing the life time of temporary sown grassland increased C stocls by 0.11 (0.07-0.22) Mg C ha-1 y-1. In general, practices with increased C inputs to soil through

  7. An integrated, probabilistic model for improved seasonal forecasting of agricultural crop yield under environmental uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathaniel K. Newlands

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available We present a novel forecasting method for generating agricultural crop yield forecasts at the seasonal and regional-scale, integrating agroclimate variables and remotely-sensed indices. The method devises a multivariate statistical model to compute bias and uncertainty in forecasted yield at the Census of Agricultural Region (CAR scale across the Canadian Prairies. The method uses robust variable-selection to select the best predictors within spatial subregions. Markov-Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC simulation and random forest-tree machine learning techniques are then integrated to generate sequential forecasts through the growing season. Cross-validation of the model was performed by hindcasting/backcasting it and comparing its forecasts against available historical data (1987-2011 for spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.. The model was also validated for the 2012 growing season by comparing its forecast skill at the CAR, provincial and Canadian Prairie region scales against available statistical survey data. Mean percent departures between wheat yield forecasted were under-estimated by 1-4 % in mid-season and over-estimated by 1 % at the end of the growing season. This integrated methodology offers a consistent, generalizable approach for sequentially forecasting crop yield at the regional-scale. It provides a statistically robust, yet flexible way to concurrently adjust to data-rich and data-sparse situations, adaptively select different predictors of yield to changing levels of environmental uncertainty, and to update forecasts sequentially so as to incorporate new data as it becomes available. This integrated method also provides additional statistical support for assessing the accuracy and reliability of model-based crop yield forecasts in time and space.

  8. An Analysis of the Impact of Heat Waves in Labor and Crop Productivity in the Agricultural Sector in California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo, F.; Wehner, M. F.; Gilless, J. K.

    2017-12-01

    California agriculture is an important economic activity for the state. California leads the nation in farms sales since 1950. In addition, agricultural employment in California reached approximately 410,000. Production of many fruits and vegetables is labor intensive and labor costs represent anywhere from 20% to 40% of total production costs. In additon, agricutlural production growth has been the highest for labor intensive crops such as berries (all types) and nuts. Given the importance of the agricultural sector and the labor component whithin it, the analysis of the impact of climate change on the agricultural sector of California becomes imperative. Heat waves are a weather related extreme that impact labor productivity, specially outdoor labor producitivity. We use crop production function analysis that incorporates socio economic variables such as crop prices, total acreage, production levels and harvest timiline with climate related variables such as an estimated Heat Index (HI) to analize the impact of heat waves on crop production via an impact on labor productivity for selected crops in the Central and Imperial Valleys in California. The analysis finds that the impact of heat waves varies by the degree of labor intensity of the crop and the relative intensity of the heat wave.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walsh, Marie E.; Torre Ugarte, D.G. de la; Shapouri, H.; Slinsky, S.P.

    2003-01-01

    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

  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. Biotech crops: imperative for achieving the millenium development goals and sustainability of agriculture in the climate change era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husaini, Amjad M; Tuteja, Narendra

    2013-01-01

    Biotechnological intervention in the development of crops has opened new vistas in agriculture. Central to the accomplishment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), biotech-agriculture is essential in meeting these targets. Biotech crops have already made modest contributions toward ensuring food and nutrition security by reducing losses and increasing productivity, with less pesticide input. These crops could help address some of the major challenges in agriculture-based economies created by climate change. Projections of global climate change expect the concentration of greenhouse gases to increase, aridization of the environment to increase, temperature fluctuations to occur sharply and frequently, and spatial and temporal distribution of rainfall to be disturbed-all of which will increase abiotic stress-related challenges to crops. Countering these challenges and to meet the food requirement of the ever-increasing world population (expected to reach 9 billion by 2030) we need to (1) develop and use biotech crops for mitigating adverse climatic changes; (2) develop biotech crops resilient to adverse environmental conditions; and (3) address the issues/non-issues raised by NGO's and educate the masses about the benefits of biotech crops.

  12. 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.

  13. Agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2002-01-01

    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

  14. 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.

  15. Impact of agriculture crop residue burning on atmospheric aerosol loading – a study over Punjab State, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darshan Singh

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available The present study deals with the impact of agriculture crop residue burning on aerosol properties during October 2006 and 2007 over Punjab State, India using ground based measurements and multi-satellite data. Spectral aerosol optical depth (AOD and Ångström exponent (α values exhibited larger day to day variation during crop residue burning period. The monthly mean Ångström exponent "α" and turbidity parameter "β" values during October 2007 were 1.31±0.31 and 0.36±0.21, respectively. The higher values of "α" and "β" suggest turbid atmospheric conditions with increase in fine mode aerosols over the region during crop residue burning period. AURA-OMI derived Aerosol Index (AI and Nitrogen dioxide (NO2 showed higher values over the study region during October 2007 compared to October 2006 suggesting enhanced atmospheric pollution associated with agriculture crop residue burning.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  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).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauböck, Roland; Karpenstein-Machan, Marianne; Kappas, Martin

    2014-01-01

    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 maize cultivation. The model Biomass Simulation Tool for Agricultural Resources (BioSTAR) has been validated with observed yield data from the region of Hannover for the cultures maize and winter wheat. Predicted yields for the cultures show satisfactory error values of 9.36% (maize) and 11.5% (winter wheat). Correlations with observed data are significant ( P  alternative to maize in the region of Hanover and other places in Lower Saxony. The model BioSTAR simulated yields for maize and winter wheat in the region of Hannover at a good overall level of accuracy (combined error 10.4%). Due to input data aggregation, individual years show high errors though (up to 30%). Nevertheless, the BioSTAR crop model has proven to be a functioning tool for the prediction of agricultural biomass potentials under varying environmental and crop management frame conditions.

  19. Assessment of environmental impacts following alternative agricultural policy scenarios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bárlund, I; Lehtonen, H; Tattari, S

    2005-01-01

    Abstract Finnish agriculture is likely to undergo major changes in the near and intermediate future. The ifuture policy context can be examined at a general level by strategic scenario building. Computer-based modelling in combination with agricultural policy scenarios can in turn create a basis for the assessments of changes in environmental quality following possible changes in Finnish agriculture. The analysis of economic consequences is based on the DREMFIA model, which is applied to study effects of various agricultural policies on land use, animal production, and farmers' income. The model is suitable for an impact analysis covering an extended time span--here up to the year 2015. The changes in land use, obtained with the DREMFIA model assuming rational economic behaviour, form the basis when evaluating environmental impacts of different agricultural policies. The environmental impact assessment is performed using the field scale nutrient transport model ICECREAM. The modelled variables are nitrogen and phosphorus losses in surface runoff and percolation. In this paper the modelling strategy will be presented and highlighted using two case study catchments with varying environmental conditions and land use as an example. In addition, the paper identifies issues arising when connecting policy scenarios with impact modelling.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santos, M.A. dos

    1997-01-01

    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)

  1. SPATIO-TEMPORAL MODELING OF AGRICULTURAL YIELD DATA WITH AN APPLICATION TO PRICING CROP INSURANCE CONTRACTS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozaki, Vitor A.; Ghosh, Sujit K.; Goodwin, Barry K.; Shirota, Ricardo

    2009-01-01

    This article presents a statistical model of agricultural yield data based on a set of hierarchical Bayesian models that allows joint modeling of temporal and spatial autocorrelation. This method captures a comprehensive range of the various uncertainties involved in predicting crop insurance premium rates as opposed to the more traditional ad hoc, two-stage methods that are typically based on independent estimation and prediction. A panel data set of county-average yield data was analyzed for 290 counties in the State of Paraná (Brazil) for the period of 1990 through 2002. Posterior predictive criteria are used to evaluate different model specifications. This article provides substantial improvements in the statistical and actuarial methods often applied to the calculation of insurance premium rates. These improvements are especially relevant to situations where data are limited. PMID:19890450

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wetselaar, R.I.

    1992-01-01

    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

  3. Pollution of agricultural crops with lanthanides, thorium and uranium studied by instrumental and radiochemical neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kucera, J.; Mizera, J.; Randa, Z.; Vavrova, M.

    2007-01-01

    The lanthanide elements, Th and U were measured in soils and agricultural crops collected in an area polluted by emissions from a phosphate fertilizer plant. Concentrations of the above elements in the soil and crop samples were determined by instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA). Selected crop samples were also analyzed using radiochemical neutron activation analysis (RNAA) based on alkaline-oxidative fusion of the irradiated samples followed by precipitation of REE oxalates. Elevated levels of lanthanides, Th and U were found in some samples, especially in wheat chaff and parsley. (author)

  4. Neutralization of acidic raindrops on leaves of agricultural crop and boreal forest species

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hutchinson, T.C.; Adams, C.M.; Gaber, B.A.

    1986-10-01

    The abilities of foliage of selected agricultural crop and native boreal forest species to neutralize acidic raindrops were compared. The species differed widely in their responses. Neutralization was influenced to a large extent by leaf wettability and was poorly related with species' susceptibility to foliar injury from acid rain sprayings. Little neutralization of pH 3.0 droplets occurred on very waxy leaves, e.g. cabbage (Brassica oleracea L.), due to the small contact area between the leaf surface and raindrops. In contrast, on sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) and radish (Raphanus sativus L.) leaves, which are pubescent and easily wettable, neutralization was considerable. For all agricultural crop species examined, the pH of droplets drying on cotyledons was consistently higher than on the leaves. The pH values of raindrops were also higher when the foliage was injured by the acid rain, probably due to leakage of cellular contents. Among boreal forest species examined, bunchberry (Cornus canadensis L.) was particularly good at neutralizing natural acid rain, increasing the pH from 3.9 to 6.6 after 9 hr of foliar contact, while the response of other boreal species ranged from a final pH of 4.8 to 5.7 under the same conditions. Simulated raindrops on wild sarsaparilla (Aralia nudicaulis L.) were never neutralized but increased in acidity as they evaporated. Chemical analyses of droplets collected from foliage showed calcium (Ca) and potassium (K) to be the major cations entering the neutralized droplets. Neutralization of acidic raindrops appears to occur through two processes; solubilization of alkaline dusts and exudates on the leaf surface, and ion exchange removal of H/sup +/ by the foliage. 14 references.

  5. Neutralization of acidic raindrops on leaves of agricultural crop and boreal forest species

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hutchinson, T.C.; Adams, C.M.; Gaber, B.A.

    1986-11-01

    The abilities of foliage of selected agricultural crop and native boreal forest species to neutralize acidic raindrops were compared. The species differed widely in their responses. Neutralization was influenced to a large extent by leaf wettability and was poorly related with species' susceptibility to foliar injury from acid rain sprayings. Little neutralization of pH 3.0 droplets occurred on very waxy leaves, e.g. cabbage (Brassica oleracea L.), due to the small contact area between the leaf surface and raindrops. In contrast, on sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) and radish (Raphanus sativus L.) leaves, which are pubescent and easily wettable, neutralization was considerable. For all agricultural crop species examined, the pH of droplets drying on cotyledons was consistently higher than on the leaves. The pH values of raindrops were also higher when the foliage was injured by the acid rain, probably due to leakage of cellular contents. Among boreal forest species examined, bunchberry (Cornus canadensis L.) was particularly good at neutralizing natural acid rain, increasing the pH from 3.9 to 6.6 after 9 hr of foliar contact, while the response of other boreal species ranged from a final pH of 4.8 to 5.7 under the same conditions. Simulated raindrops on wild sarsaparilla (Aralia nudicaulis L.) were never neutralized but increased in acidity as they evaporated. Chemical analyses of droplets collected from foliage showed calcium and potassium to be the major cations entering the neutralized droplets. Neutralization of acidic raindrops appears to occur through two processes: solubilization of alkaline dusts and exudates on the leaf surface, and ion exchange removal of H/sup +/ by the foliage. 14 refs.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Galeriu, Dan; Melintescu, Anca [' Horia Hulubei' National Institute for Physics and Nuclear Engineering, Department of Environmental Physics and Life, 30 Reactorului St., POB MG-6, Bucharest-Magurele, RO-077125 (Romania); Lazar, Catalin [National Agricultural Research and Development Institute Fundulea, 915200 Fundulea, Calarasi County (Romania)

    2014-07-01

    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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sivaramakrishnan, S.; Seetharama, N.; Kannan, Seetha

    2001-01-01

    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)

  8. Vegetation index-based crop coefficients to estimate evapotranspiration by remote sensing in agricultural and natural ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glenn, E.P.; Neale, C. M. U.; Hunsaker, D.J.; Nagler, P.L.

    2011-01-01

    Crop coefficients were developed to determine crop water needs based on the evapotranspiration (ET) of a reference crop under a given set of meteorological conditions. Starting in the 1980s, crop coefficients developed through lysimeter studies or set by expert opinion began to be supplemented by remotely sensed vegetation indices (VI) that measured the actual status of the crop on a field-by-field basis. VIs measure the density of green foliage based on the reflectance of visible and near infrared (NIR) light from the canopy, and are highly correlated with plant physiological processes that depend on light absorption by a canopy such as ET and photosynthesis. Reflectance-based crop coefficients have now been developed for numerous individual crops, including corn, wheat, alfalfa, cotton, potato, sugar beet, vegetables, grapes and orchard crops. Other research has shown that VIs can be used to predict ET over fields of mixed crops, allowing them to be used to monitor ET over entire irrigation districts. VI-based crop coefficients can help reduce agricultural water use by matching irrigation rates to the actual water needs of a crop as it grows instead of to a modeled crop growing under optimal conditions. Recently, the concept has been applied to natural ecosystems at the local, regional and continental scales of measurement, using time-series satellite data from the MODIS sensors on the Terra satellite. VIs or other visible-NIR band algorithms are combined with meteorological data to predict ET in numerous biome types, from deserts, to arctic tundra, to tropical rainforests. These methods often closely match ET measured on the ground at the global FluxNet array of eddy covariance moisture and carbon flux towers. The primary advantage of VI methods for estimating ET is that transpiration is closely related to radiation absorbed by the plant canopy, which is closely related to VIs. The primary disadvantage is that they cannot capture stress effects or soil

  9. 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).

  10. 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...

  11. Arsenic behaviour from groundwater and soil to crops: impacts on agriculture and food safety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heikens, Alex; Panaullah, Golam M; Meharg, Andy A

    2007-01-01

    High levels of As in groundwater commonly found in Bangladesh and other parts of Asia not only pose a risk via drinking water consumption but also a risk in agricultural sustainability and food safety. This review attempts to provide an overview of current knowledge and gaps related to the assessment and management of these risks, including the behaviour of As in the soil-plant system, uptake, phytotoxicity, As speciation in foods, dietary habits, and human health risks. Special emphasis has been given to the situation in Bangladesh, where groundwater via shallow tube wells is the most important source of irrigation water in the dry season. Within the soil-plant system, there is a distinct difference in behaviour of As under flooded conditions, where arsenite (AsIII) predominates, and under nonflooded conditions, where arsenate (AsV) predominates. The former is regarded as most toxic to humans and plants. Limited data indicate that As-contaminated irrigation water can result in a slow buildup of As in the topsoil. In some cases the buildup is reflected by the As levels in crops, in others not. It is not yet possible to predict As uptake and toxicity in plants based on soil parameters. It is unknown under what conditions and in what time frame As is building up in the soil. Representative phytotoxicity data necessary to evaluate current and future soil concentrations are not yet available. Although there are no indications that crop production is currently inhibited by As, long-term risks are clearly present. Therefore, with concurrent assessments of the risks, management options to further prevent As accumulation in the topsoil should already have been explored. With regard to human health, data on As speciation in foods in combination with food consumption data are needed to assess dietary exposure, and these data should include spatial and seasonal variability. It is important to control confounding factors in assessing the risks. In a country where malnutrition

  12. Professionnalisation de l'agriculture : Une alternative aux effets des ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    La démarche méthodologique utilisée s'articule autour de la recherche documentaire et de la collecte des informations socio-économiques détaillées obtenues auprès des ménages sur les organisations professionnelles agricoles et sur le processus de professionnalisation de l'agriculture. Un diagnostic agroclimatique a ...

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

    OpenAIRE

    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 ...

  14. 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. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  15. Assessment of agricultural crops and natural vegetation in Scotland for energy production by anaerobic digestion and hydrothermal liquefaction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Biller, Patrick; Lawson, David; Madsen, René Bjerregaard

    2017-01-01

    The current paper investigates the use of natural vegetation and agricultural crops commonly found in Scotland as a source of bioenergy. Such biomass is shown to have a high moisture content upon harvest (∼80%) which renders them suitable for wet conversion technologies such as anaerobic digestion...

  16. Introduction to Agronomy, Grain Crops, Weeds and Controls. A Learning Activity Pac in Agricultural Education Courses in Wisconsin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wisconsin State Dept. of Public Instruction, Madison. Div. of Instructional Services.

    This learning activity pac contains information to help the teachers of high school vocational agriculture in the instructional area of agronomy. Each of the two main sections, grain crops and weeds and controls, includes teacher and student units for the section lessons. Teacher units include special instructions--equipment needed (film…

  17. Alternate bearing in citrus: changes in the expression of flowering control genes and in global gene expression in ON- versus OFF-crop trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shalom, Liron; Samuels, Sivan; Zur, Naftali; Shlizerman, Lyudmila; Zemach, Hanita; Weissberg, Mira; Ophir, Ron; Blumwald, Eduardo; Sadka, Avi

    2012-01-01

    Alternate bearing (AB) is the process in fruit trees by which cycles of heavy yield (ON crop) one year are followed by a light yield (OFF crop) the next. Heavy yield usually reduces flowering intensity the following year. Despite its agricultural importance, how the developing crop influences the following year's return bloom and yield is not fully understood. It might be assumed that an 'AB signal' is generated in the fruit, or in another organ that senses fruit presence, and moves into the bud to determine its fate-flowering or vegetative growth. The bud then responds to fruit presence by altering regulatory and metabolic pathways. Determining these pathways, and when they are altered, might indicate the nature of this putative AB signal. We studied bud morphology, the expression of flowering control genes, and global gene expression in ON- and OFF-crop buds. In May, shortly after flowering and fruit set, OFF-crop buds were already significantly longer than ON-crop buds. The number of differentially expressed genes was higher in May than at the other tested time points. Processes differentially expressed between ON- and OFF-crop trees included key metabolic and regulatory pathways, such as photosynthesis and secondary metabolism. The expression of genes of trehalose metabolism and flavonoid metabolism was validated by nCounter technology, and the latter was confirmed by metabolomic analysis. Among genes induced in OFF-crop trees was one homologous to SQUAMOSA PROMOTER BINDING-LIKE (SPL), which controls juvenile-to-adult and annual phase transitions, regulated by miR156. The expression pattern of SPL-like, miR156 and other flowering control genes suggested that fruit load affects bud fate, and therefore development and metabolism, a relatively long time before the flowering induction period. Results shed light on some of the metabolic and regulatory processes that are altered in ON and OFF buds.

  18. 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

  19. Evaluation of Agricultural Crops Water Footprint with Application of Climate Change in Urmia Lake basin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    majid montaseri

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: The water footprint index as a complete indicator represents the actual used water in agriculture based on the climate condition, the amount of crop production, the people consumption pattern, the agriculture practices and water efficiency in any region. The water footprint in agricultural products is divided to three components, including green, blue and gray water footprint. Green water footprint is rainwater stored in soil profile and on vegetation. Blue water refers to water in rivers, lakes and aquifers which is used for irrigation purposes. Gray water footprint refers to define as the volume of contaminated water. The water footprint in arid and semiarid regions with high water requirement for plants and limited fresh water resources has considerable importance and key role in the planning and utilization of limited water resources in these regions. On the other hand, increasing the temperature and decreasing the rainfall due to climate change, are two agents which affect arid and semiarid regions. Therefore, in this research the water footprint of agriculturalcrop production in Urmia Lake basin, with application of climate change for planning, stable operating and crop pattern optimizing, was evaluated to reduce agricultural water consumption and help supplying water rights of Urmia Lake. Materials and Methods:Urmia Lake basin, as one of the main sextet basins in Iran, is located in the North West of Iran and includes large sections of West Azerbaijan, East Azerbaijan and Kurdistan areas. Thirteen major rivers are responsible to drain surface streams in Urmia Lake basin and these rivers after supplying agriculture and drinking water and residential areas in the flow path, are evacuated to the Lake. Today because of non-observance of sustainable development concept, increasing water use in different parts and climate change phenomena in Urmia Lake basin the hydrologic balance was perturbed, and Urmia Lake has been lost 90% of

  20. Asymmetries of cattle and crop productivity and efficiency during Brazil’s agricultural expansion from 1975 to 2006

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerd Sparovek

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Brazil has global importance for food production and conservation of natural resources. The country has plans to increase yields and commitments to decrease deforestation that require higher productivity. Plans and policies for the growth of Brazilian agriculture, however, have been made without an integrated analysis of the harvest and not supported by a universal metric regarding its efficiency. Applying methods to model flows of energy and matter along food supply chains for agricultural production from 1975 to 2006, we found that crop and cattle harvests and their productivity have increased during the last four decades in consolidated and deforestation frontier regions. Yet in 2006, crop protein production was 20 times larger than cattle protein, using an area 2.6 times smaller than pastures. Crop protein productivity was 0.25 ton.ha–1 with emissions of 2 ton GHG per ton of protein, while cattle productivity was 0.01 ton.ha–1 with emissions of 283 ton GHG per ton of protein. From 1975 to 2006, the portion of crop protein and energy going to feed increased while the portion going to direct human consumption decreased. Our findings suggest that more efficient food systems would be achieved by a combination of intensification of cattle systems, optimization of feed-meat systems and an increase in the share of the consumption of crops as a source of protein. We suggest an initial road map to the expansion of the cultivated area and intensification of agriculture for zero deforestation, efficient and sustainable land use and food systems where cattle pasture intensification is a transition that will last until the expansion of crops replace all pasture present on suitable arable land. During this transition, pasture area will decrease until it is limited only to marginal non-arable lands. Such change could be achieved by a robust strategy that combines penalties and incentives and prevents the risks of a rebound effect for the

  1. Strengthening Agricultural Decisions in Countries at Risk of Food Insecurity: The GEOGLAM Crop Monitor for Early Warning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker-Reshef, I.; Barker, B.; McGaughey, K.; Humber, M. L.; Sanchez, A.; Justice, C. O.; Rembold, F.; Verdin, J. P.

    2016-12-01

    Timely, reliable information on crop conditions, and prospects at the subnational scale, is critical for making informed policy and agricultural decisions for ensuring food security, particularly for the most vulnerable countries. However, such information is often incomplete or lacking. As such, the Crop Monitor for Early Warning (CM for EW) was developed with the goal to reduce uncertainty and strengthen decision support by providing actionable information on a monthly basis to national, regional and global food security agencies through timely consensus assessments of crop conditions. This information is especially critical in recent years, given the extreme weather conditions impacting food supplies including the most recent El Nino event. This initiative brings together the main international food security monitoring agencies and organizations to develop monthly crop assessments based on satellite observations, meteorological information, field observations and ground reports, which reflect an international consensus. This activity grew out of the successful Crop Monitor for the G20 Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS), which provides operational monthly crop assessments of the main producing countries of the world. The CM for EW was launched in February 2016 and has already become a trusted source of information internationally and regionally. Its assessments have been featured in a large number of news articles, reports, and press releases, including a joint statement by the USAID's FEWS NET, UN World Food Program, European Commission Joint Research Center, and the UN Food and Agriculture Organziation, on the devastating impacts of the southern African drought due to El Nino. One of the main priorities for this activity going forward is to expand its partnership with regional and national monitoring agencies, and strengthen capacity for national crop condition assessments.

  2. 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.

  3. Methodology for combining optical and microwave remote sensing in agricultural crop monitoring : the sugar beet crop as special case

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, van H.

    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

  4. DIAGNOSIS OF ALTERNATIVE DEVELOPMENT OF AGRICULTURE IN THE CITY OF UBÁ-MG

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrícia Sperandio Duriguetto

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Conventional agriculture uses mechanization practices, remediation and soil fertilization and pesticides to control pests and diseases. The criticism of this farming system grows as studies show that pesticides contaminate food and the environment and cause health damage. Aiming at sustainable development and the pursuit of consolidation between the social, economic and ecological agriculture alternative arises. This work is outlined in order to understand the current status, characteristics, limitations and difficulties for the implementation of alternative agriculture in the municipality of Ubá-MG. Furthermore, we seek to identify the knowledge of agricultural alternative as well as the interest and profile of likely consumers of these products in the municipality. We conducted a quantitative research through the use of two questionnaires with multiple choice questions and dichotomous, by simple random sampling. The results show that there are many difficulties for the development of alternative agriculture in the county, including: a lack of resources for producers, small-scale production, lack of market and consumer knowledge about alternative product in the municipality. Given these difficulties, the alternative system seems advantageous and competitive both economically and environmentally compared to the conventional system. There was a lack of information regarding organic products, alternative, since access to these is restricted to much of the population in the municipality of Ubá and adjacent municipalities. Seeking theoretical basis it was necessary also to perform a literature search in several papers that address the theme.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edwards, B.K.; Flaim, S.J.; Howitt, R.E.; Palmer, S.C.

    1995-03-01

    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

  6. 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 metabolism (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 Tibetan residents. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elly C. Knight

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available 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 interior habitat. We then examined whether the local nest predator community and vegetation could explain the differences detected. We detected fewer nests in edge than interior habitat. Nest abundance per songbird was also lower in edge than interior habitat, although only adjacent to vineyards. Nest predation was more frequent in orchard edge habitat than vineyard edge or interior habitat. Predators identified with nest cameras were primarily snakes, however, reduced nest survival in orchard edge habitat was not explained by differences in the abundance of snakes or any other predator species identified. Information theoretic analysis of daily survival rates showed that greater study plot shrub cover and lower grass height at nests were partially responsible for the lower rate of predation-specific daily nest survival rate (PDSR observed in orchard edge habitat, but additional factors are likely important. Results of this study suggest that different crop types have different edge effects on songbirds nesting in sagebrush shrubsteppe, and that these reproductive edge effects may contribute to observed declines of these species. Habitat managers should avoid the creation of new orchard-sagebrush habitat edges to avoid further impacts on already declining songbird populations.

  10. Changing techniques in crop plant classification: molecularization at the National Institute of Agricultural Botany during the 1980s.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, Matthew

    2017-04-01

    Modern methods of analysing biological materials, including protein and DNA sequencing, are increasingly the objects of historical study. Yet twentieth-century taxonomic techniques have been overlooked in one of their most important contexts: agricultural botany. This paper addresses this omission by harnessing unexamined archival material from the National Institute of Agricultural Botany (NIAB), a British plant science organization. During the 1980s the NIAB carried out three overlapping research programmes in crop identification and analysis: electrophoresis, near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) and machine vision systems. For each of these three programmes, contemporary economic, statutory and scientific factors behind their uptake by the NIAB are discussed. This approach reveals significant links between taxonomic practice at the NIAB and historical questions around agricultural research, intellectual property and scientific values. Such links are of further importance given that the techniques developed by researchers at the NIAB during the 1980s remain part of crop classification guidelines issued by international bodies today.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, J.; Kang, S.; Seo, B.; Lee, K.

    2017-12-01

    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 been 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. Also we investigated factors associated with crop development rate. Temperature and photoperiod are the two main factors which would influence the crop's growth pattern expressed in the VI data. Only the effect of temperature on crop development rate was considered. The temperature response function in the Wang-Engel (WE) model was used, which simulates crop development using nonlinear models with response functions that range from zero to one. It has attempted at the state level over 14 years (2003-2016) in Iowa and Illinois state of USA, where the estimated phenology date by using four methods for both corn and soybean. Weekly crop progress reports produced by the USDA NASS were used to validate phenology detection algorithms effected by temperature. All methods showed substantial uncertainty but the threshold method showed relatively better agreement with the State-level data for soybean phenology.

  12. Alternative approaches to food: Community supported agriculture in urban China

    OpenAIRE

    Krul, K.; Ho, P.P.S.

    2017-01-01

    One of the most remarkable features of China's development path is its large-scale and fast-paced urbanization. As cities already accommodate more than half of China's population, new challenges to urban food systems have emerged concurrently. Concerns over environmental degradation and food safety have provoked growing dissatisfaction with China's food regime. Amidst these concerns, the aim of this paper is to study the role of new and alternative approaches to food, focusing in on the quest...

  13. Evaluation of the halophyte Salsola soda as an alternative crop for saline soils high in selenium and boron.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Centofanti, Tiziana; Bañuelos, Gary

    2015-07-01

    Urbanization, industrial development, and intensive agriculture have caused soil contamination and land degradation in many areas of the world. Salinization is one important factor contributing to land degradation and it affects agricultural production and environmental quality. When salinization is combined with soil pollution by trace elements, as it occurs in many arid and semi-arid regions around the world, strategies to phyto-manage pollutants and sustain crop production need to be implemented. In this study, we present the case of saline soils in the West side of Central California which contain naturally-occurring selenium (Se), boron (B), and other salts, such as NaCl, CaCl2, Na2SO4, and Na2SeO4. To sustain crop production on Se- and B-laden arid saline soils, we investigated the potential of the halophyte "agretti" (Salsola soda L.) as an alternative crop. The aim of our greenhouse study was to examine adaptability, B tolerance, and Se accumulation by S. soda grown on soils collected from a typical saline-laden field site located on the West side of the San Joaquin Valley (SJV). Our results showed that S. soda tolerates the saline (EC ∼ 10 dS m(-1)) and B-laden soils (10 mg B L(-1)) of the SJV even with the additional irrigation of saline and B rich water (EC ∼ 3 dS m(-1) and 4 mg B L(-1)). Under these growing conditions, the plant can accumulate high concentrations of Na (80 g Na kg(-1) DW), B (100 mg B kg(-1) DW), and Se (3-4 mg Se kg(-1) DW) without showing toxicity symptoms. Hence, S. soda showed promising potential as a plant species that can be grown in B-laden saline soils and accumulate and potentially manage excessive soluble Se and B in soil. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Genetic engineering of cytokinin metabolism: prospective way to improve agricultural traits of crop plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zalabák, David; Pospíšilová, Hana; Šmehilová, Mária; Mrízová, Katarína; Frébort, Ivo; Galuszka, Petr

    2013-01-01

    Cytokinins (CKs) are ubiquitous phytohormones that participate in development, morphogenesis and many physiological processes throughout plant kingdom. In higher plants, mutants and transgenic cells and tissues with altered activity of CK metabolic enzymes or perception machinery, have highlighted their crucial involvement in different agriculturally important traits, such as productivity, increased tolerance to various stresses and overall plant morphology. Furthermore, recent precise metabolomic analyses have elucidated the specific occurrence and distinct functions of different CK types in various plant species. Thus, smooth manipulation of active CK levels in a spatial and temporal way could be a very potent tool for plant biotechnology in the future. This review summarises recent advances in cytokinin research ranging from transgenic alteration of CK biosynthetic, degradation and glucosylation activities and CK perception to detailed elucidation of molecular processes, in which CKs work as a trigger in model plants. The first attempts to improve the quality of crop plants, focused on cereals are discussed, together with proposed mechanism of action of the responses involved. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. 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.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ishii, S.; Bell, J.N.B.; Marshall, F.M.

    2007-01-01

    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 O 3 . Together with minor risks associated with the levels of NO 2 and SO 2 , 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 O 3 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

  17. AUTOMATIC TRAINING SITE SELECTION FOR AGRICULTURAL CROP CLASSIFICATION: A CASE STUDY ON KARACABEY PLAIN, TURKEY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Ozdarici Ok

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available 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

  18. What Prompts Agricultural Innovation in Rural Nepal: A Study Using the Example of Macadamia and Walnut Trees as Novel Cash Crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Karin Barrueto

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Agricultural innovations are important, especially as climatic conditions around the world have been subject to increasing change over the past decades. Through innovation, farmers can adapt to the changing conditions and secure their livelihoods. In Nepal, 75% of the population depends upon agriculture, which is impacted by climate change, migration, and feminisation. In this context, it is important to understand what drives a household to start agricultural innovation to increase its economic benefits and resilience in the face of multiple pressures. We sought a comprehensive understanding of these drivers by investigating the determinants of rural innovation, using macadamia and walnut trees as examples of novel, potentially commercialised cash crops. After conducting an in-depth household survey that divided farmers into those who cultivate nuts and those who do not, we analysed the socio-economic and cultural characteristics of each category using statistical tests and a multiple logistic regression. Our results show that the individual variables of ethnicity, wealth and “years of experience with fruit trees” correlate significantly with nut cultivation. The results of the multiple regression suggest that “years of experience with tree cultivation” and “having an income through fruit trees” most influence nut cultivation. Overall, we conclude that nut cultivation is an accepted and promising cash crop mostly grown by wealthier households, and that, for poor, landless, or female-headed households to benefit, alternative business models and new policies must be explored and developed. We further suggest that this is also true for other nut or other cash crop trees that have gained recent attention in Nepal such as almond, hazelnut, or pecan farming.

  19. Modelling crop land use change derived from influencing factors selected and ranked by farmers in North temperate agricultural regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mehdi, Bano; Lehner, Bernhard; Ludwig, Ralf

    2018-08-01

    To develop meaningful land use scenarios, drivers that affect changes in the landscape are required. In this study, driving factors that influence farmers to change crops on their farm were determined. A questionnaire was administered to four independent groups of farmers who identified and ranked influencing factors pertaining to their choices of crops. The farmers were located in two mid-latitude agricultural watersheds (in Germany and Canada). The ranked influencing factors were used to develop a "farmer driven" scenario to 2040 in both watersheds. Results showed that the most important influencing factors for farmers to change crops were the "economic return of the crop" and "market factors". Yet, when the drivers of crop land use change were grouped into two categories of "financial" and "indirectly-related financial" factors, the "financial" factors made up approximately half of the influencing factors. For some responses, the "indirectly-related financial" factors (i.e. "access to farm equipment", the "farm experience", and "climate") ranked higher than or just as high as the financial factors. Overall, in the four farmer groups the differences between the rankings of the influencing factors were minor, indicating that drivers may be transferable between farms if the farmers are full-time and the farming regions have comparable growing seasons, access to markets, similar technology, and government programs for farm income. In addition to the "farmer driven" scenario, a "policy driven" scenario was derived for each watershed based only on available information on the financial incentives provided to farmers (i.e. agricultural subsidies, income support, crop insurance). The influencing factors ranked by the farmers provided in-depth information that was not captured by the "policy driven" scenario and contributed to improving predictions for crop land use development. This straight-forward method to rank qualitative data provided by farmers can easily be

  20. Vicia narbonensis-Avena strigosa mixture, a viable alternative in rainfed cropping systems under Mediterranean conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pedraza, V.; Perea, F.; Saavedra, M.; Fuentes, C.; Alcántara, C.

    2017-07-01

    The demand of vegetable protein for animal feed and the need to diversify the crop rotation in rainfed Mediterranean climates has led to study the viability as new forage crop of the Vicia narbonensis-Avena strigosa mixture. Therefore, a 3-year field trial was conducted at two different and representative locations of the area to evaluate the capacity of both species to form a balanced mixture and to define its potential for high yield and forage quality. Different seeding ratios (65:35, 50:50 and 35:65) were compared with their pure stands and the standard mixture Avena sativa-Vicia sativa (65:35). Forage mixtures establishment and growth varied according to the environmental conditions with a negative influence of a dry year 1 for legumes (<300 mm) and a wet year 2 for oats (>630 mm). However, competition ratio indicated that there were not significant differences between mixed treatments, displaying intermediate ground coverage values, dry matter yield and crude protein regarding pure stands. Higher dry matter yield than control mixture in addition to similar crude protein, acid-detergent fibre, neutral-detergent fibre and digestible dry matter values, were produced at 35:65 in dry years and 65:35 and 50:50 in rainy years with loamy and clay soils, respectively. The appropriate development of both species in the mixture at different soil and rainfall conditions, as well as a good yield often higher than control mixture and a great forage quality, confirm to the narbon bean-black oat mixture as a viable and profitable crop alternative in rainfed cropping systems under Mediterranean conditions.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Villamizar Moreno, J.

    1999-01-01

    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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sangchul; Yeo, In-Young; Sadeghi, Ali M; McCarty, Gregory W; Hively, W Dean; Lang, Megan W

    2016-01-01

    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

  6. 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

  7. Model evaluation of the function of prey in non-crop habitats for biological control by ladybeetles in agricultural landscapes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bianchi, F.J.J.A.; Werf, van der W.

    2004-01-01

    The availability of alternative prey is considered to be an important factor for the conservation of predators in agro-ecosystems. However, only a limited number of studies have investigated the effect of prey availability in non-crop habitats on predator impact. We studied the potential of the

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilson, P.; Glithero, N.J.; Ramsden, S.J.

    2014-01-01

    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

  9. 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...

  10. Trends in family labour, hired labour and contract work on French and Swiss crop farms: The role of agricultural policies

    OpenAIRE

    Dupraz, Pierre; Latruffe, Laure; Mann, Stefan

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this article is to analyse the trends in on-farm labour use, including own family labour, hired labour and contract work, and to assess the factors driving their evolution in France and in Switzerland during 1990-2007. A particular attention is given to agricultural policies, namely the level and type of support. Results indicate that crop area payments discourage the different labour demands in both countries, while environment and investment payments favour contract and hir...

  11. Trends in family, hired and contract labour use on French and Swiss crop farms: The role of agricultural policies

    OpenAIRE

    Dupraz, Pierre; Latruffe, Laure; Mann, Stefan

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this article is to analyse the trends in on-farm labour use, including own family labour, hired labour and contract work, and to assess the factors driving their evolution in France and in Switzerland during 1990-2007. A particular attention is given to agricultural policies, namely the level and type of support. Results indicate that crop area payments discourage the different labour demands in both countries. No other subsidies have a significant influence on labour use in ...

  12. Testing the validity of a Cd soil quality standard in representative Mediterranean agricultural soils under an accumulator crop

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recatala, L.; Sanchez, J.; Arbelo, C.; Sacristan, D.

    2010-01-01

    The validity of a quality standard for cadmium (Cd) in representative agricultural Mediterranean soils under an accumulator crop (Lactuca sativa L.) is evaluated in this work considering both its effect on the crop growth (biomass production) and the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. Four soils with different properties relevant to regulate the behaviour of heavy metals were selected from the Valencian Region, a representative area of the European Mediterranean Region. For all soils, the effective concentration of added Cd causing 50% inhibition (EC 50 ) on the biomass production was much higher than the minimum legal concentration used to declare soils as contaminated by cadmium, i.e. 100 times the baseline value for Cd, in Spain (Spanish Royal Decree 9/2005). As expected, Cd toxicity in the crop was higher in the soils having less carbonate content. On the other hand, for all soils, from the second dose on, which represents 10-times the baseline value for Cd, the metal content in crops exceeded the maximum level established for leaf crops by the European legislation (Regulation EC no. 466/2001). Soil salinity and coarse textures make the accumulation of Cd in the edible part of the plant easier. Therefore, the legal baseline soil cadmium content established by the Spanish legislation seems not valid neither from the point of view of the effect on the crop growth nor from the point of view of the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. In order to realistically declare contaminated soils by heavy metals, soil quality standards should be proposed taking into account the soil properties. Further research in other agricultural areas of the region would improve the basis for proposing adequate soil quality standards for heavy metals as highlighted by the European Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection.

  13. Testing the validity of a Cd soil quality standard in representative Mediterranean agricultural soils under an accumulator crop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Recatala, L., E-mail: luis.recatala@uv.es [Departamento de Planificacion Territorial, Centro de Investigaciones sobre Desertificacion-CIDE (CSIC-Universitat de Valencia-Generalitat Valenciana), Cami de la Marjal S/N, 46470 Albal (Valencia) (Spain); Sanchez, J. [Departamento de Planificacion Territorial, Centro de Investigaciones sobre Desertificacion-CIDE (CSIC-Universitat de Valencia-Generalitat Valenciana), Cami de la Marjal S/N, 46470 Albal (Valencia) (Spain); Arbelo, C. [Departamento de Edafologia y Geologia, Facultad de Biologia, Universidad de La Laguna, 38206 La Laguna (Tenerife), Islas Canarias (Spain); Sacristan, D. [Departamento de Planificacion Territorial, Centro de Investigaciones sobre Desertificacion-CIDE (CSIC-Universitat de Valencia-Generalitat Valenciana), Cami de la Marjal S/N, 46470 Albal (Valencia) (Spain)

    2010-12-01

    The validity of a quality standard for cadmium (Cd) in representative agricultural Mediterranean soils under an accumulator crop (Lactuca sativa L.) is evaluated in this work considering both its effect on the crop growth (biomass production) and the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. Four soils with different properties relevant to regulate the behaviour of heavy metals were selected from the Valencian Region, a representative area of the European Mediterranean Region. For all soils, the effective concentration of added Cd causing 50% inhibition (EC{sub 50}) on the biomass production was much higher than the minimum legal concentration used to declare soils as contaminated by cadmium, i.e. 100 times the baseline value for Cd, in Spain (Spanish Royal Decree 9/2005). As expected, Cd toxicity in the crop was higher in the soils having less carbonate content. On the other hand, for all soils, from the second dose on, which represents 10-times the baseline value for Cd, the metal content in crops exceeded the maximum level established for leaf crops by the European legislation (Regulation EC no. 466/2001). Soil salinity and coarse textures make the accumulation of Cd in the edible part of the plant easier. Therefore, the legal baseline soil cadmium content established by the Spanish legislation seems not valid neither from the point of view of the effect on the crop growth nor from the point of view of the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. In order to realistically declare contaminated soils by heavy metals, soil quality standards should be proposed taking into account the soil properties. Further research in other agricultural areas of the region would improve the basis for proposing adequate soil quality standards for heavy metals as highlighted by the European Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection.

  14. 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.

  15. Simulated vs. empirical weather responsiveness of crop yields: US evidence and implications for the agricultural impacts of climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mistry, Malcolm N.; Wing, Ian Sue; De Cian, Enrica

    2017-07-01

    Global gridded crop models (GGCMs) are the workhorse of assessments of the agricultural impacts of climate change. Yet the changes in crop yields projected by different models in response to the same meteorological forcing can differ substantially. Through an inter-method comparison, we provide a first glimpse into the origins and implications of this divergence—both among GGCMs and between GGCMs and historical observations. We examine yields of rainfed maize, wheat, and soybeans simulated by six GGCMs as part of the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project-Fast Track (ISIMIP-FT) exercise, comparing 1981-2004 hindcast yields over the coterminous United States (US) against US Department of Agriculture (USDA) time series for about 1000 counties. Leveraging the empirical climate change impacts literature, we estimate reduced-form econometric models of crop yield responses to temperature and precipitation exposures for both GGCMs and observations. We find that up to 60% of the variance in both simulated and observed yields is attributable to weather variation. A majority of the GGCMs have difficulty reproducing the observed distribution of percentage yield anomalies, and exhibit aggregate responses that show yields to be more weather-sensitive than in the observational record over the predominant range of temperature and precipitation conditions. This disparity is largely attributable to heterogeneity in GGCMs’ responses, as opposed to uncertainty in historical weather forcings, and is responsible for widely divergent impacts of climate on future crop yields.

  16. BIOGAS PRODUCTION FROM CATCH CROPS

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2014-01-01

    -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......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...... 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...

  17. The effect of date of aerial pollution of agricultural plants on 89 Sr content in crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arkhipov, N.P.; Tevraleva, L.T.

    1979-01-01

    On the basis of the experimental data obtained in different soil-climatic zones of the USSR it is shown that for tentative calculations of the radiostrontium content in farm crop with the aerial source of nuclide delivery the period of time from plant contamination to harvesting can be used. Given are the regression equations relating 89 Sr concentration in corn, wheat and potato crops with the time of crop contamination for six native zones and the characteristics of their accuracy

  18. 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...

  19. Vulnerability of Agriculture to Climate Change as Revealed by Relationships between Simulated Crop Yield and Climate Change Indices

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, A. W.; Absar, S. M.; Nair, S.; Preston, B. L.

    2012-12-01

    The vulnerability of agriculture is among the leading concerns surrounding climate change. Agricultural production is influenced by drought and other extremes in weather and climate. In regions of subsistence farming, worst case reductions in yield lead to malnutrition and famine. Reduced surplus contributes to poverty in agrarian economies. In more economically diverse and industrialized regions, variations in agricultural yield can influence the regional economy through market mechanisms. The latter grows in importance as agriculture increasingly services the energy market in addition to markets for food and fiber. Agriculture is historically a highly adaptive enterprise and will respond to future changes in climate with a variety of adaptive mechanisms. Nonetheless, the risk, if not expectation, of increases in climate extremes and hazards exceeding historical experience motivates scientifically based anticipatory assessment of the vulnerability of agriculture to climate change. We investigate the sensitivity component of that vulnerability using EPIC, a well established field-scale model of cropping systems that includes the simulation of economic yield. The core of our analysis is the relationship between simulated yield and various indices of climate change, including the CCI/CLIVAR/JCOM ETCCDI indices, calculated from weather inputs to the model. We complement this core with analysis using the DSSAT cropping system model and exploration of relationships between historical yield statistics and climate indices calculated from weather records. Our analyses are for sites in the Southeast/Gulf Coast region of the United States. We do find "tight" monotonic relationships between annual yield and climate for some indices, especially those associated with available water. More commonly, however, we find an increase in the variability of yield as the index value becomes more extreme. Our findings contribute to understanding the sensitivity of crop yield as part of

  20. Climate-Agriculture-Modeling and Decision Tool for Disease (CAMDT-Disease) for seasonal climate forecast-based crop disease risk management in agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, K. H.; Lee, S.; Han, E.; Ines, A. V. M.

    2017-12-01

    Climate-Agriculture-Modeling and Decision Tool (CAMDT) is a decision support system (DSS) tool that aims to facilitate translations of probabilistic seasonal climate forecasts (SCF) to crop responses such as yield and water stress. Since CAMDT is a software framework connecting different models and algorithms with SCF information, it can be easily customized for different types of agriculture models. In this study, we replaced the DSSAT-CSM-Rice model originally incorporated in CAMDT with a generic epidemiological model, EPIRICE, to generate a seasonal pest outlook. The resulting CAMDT-Disease generates potential risks for selected fungal, viral, and bacterial diseases of rice over the next months by translating SCFs into agriculturally-relevant risk information. The integrated modeling procedure of CAMDT-Disease first disaggregates a given SCF using temporal downscaling methods (predictWTD or FResampler1), runs EPIRICE with the downscaled weather inputs, and finally visualizes the EPIRICE outputs as disease risk compared to that of the previous year and the 30-year-climatological average. In addition, the easy-to-use graphical user interface adopted from CAMDT allows users to simulate "what-if" scenarios of disease risks over different planting dates with given SCFs. Our future work includes the simulation of the effect of crop disease on yields through the disease simulation models with the DSSAT-CSM-Rice model, as disease remains one of the most critical yield-reducing factors in the field.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Simulating the effects of climate and agricultural management practices on global crop yield

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deryng, D.; Sacks, W. J.; Barford, C. C.; Ramankutty, N.

    2011-06-01

    Climate change is expected to significantly impact global food production, and it is important to understand the potential geographic distribution of yield losses and the means to alleviate them. This study presents a new global crop model, PEGASUS 1.0 (Predicting Ecosystem Goods And Services Using Scenarios) that integrates, in addition to climate, the effect of planting dates and cultivar choices, irrigation, and fertilizer application on crop yield for maize, soybean, and spring wheat. PEGASUS combines carbon dynamics for crops with a surface energy and soil water balance model. It also benefits from the recent development of a suite of global data sets and analyses that serve as model inputs or as calibration data. These include data on crop planting and harvesting dates, crop-specific irrigated areas, a global analysis of yield gaps, and harvested area and yield of major crops. Model results for present-day climate and farm management compare reasonably well with global data. Simulated planting and harvesting dates are within the range of crop calendar observations in more than 75% of the total crop-harvested areas. Correlation of simulated and observed crop yields indicates a weighted coefficient of determination, with the weighting based on crop-harvested area, of 0.81 for maize, 0.66 for soybean, and 0.45 for spring wheat. We found that changes in temperature and precipitation as predicted by global climate models for the 2050s lead to a global yield reduction if planting and harvesting dates remain unchanged. However, adapting planting dates and cultivar choices increases yield in temperate regions and avoids 7-18% of global losses.

  5. CLOUD-BASED AGRICULTURAL SOLUTION: A CASE STUDY OF NEAR REAL-TIME REGIONAL AGRICULTURAL CROP GROWTH INFORMATION IN SOUTH AFRICA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Hiestermann

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Recent advances in cloud-based technology has led to the rapid increase of geospatial web-based applications. The combination of GIS and cloud-based solutions is revolutionizing product development in the geospatial industry and is facilitating accessibility to a wider range of users, planners and decision makers. Accessible through an internet browser, web applications are an effective and convenient method to disseminate information in multiple formats, and they provide an interface offering interactive access to geospatial data, real-time integration and data processing, and application specific analysis tools. An example of such a web application is GeoTerraImage’s monthly crop monitoring tool called GeoFarmer. This tool uses climatic data and satellite imagery processed through a complex rule-based algorithms to determine monthly climatic averages and anomalies, and most importantly the field specific crop status (i.e. is the field fallow, or is the crop emerging, or if the field has been harvested. Monthly field verification has formed a part of calibrating the growth classification outputs to further improve the accuracy of its monthly agricultural reporting. The goal of this application is to provide timely data to decision makers to assist them in field-level and regional crop growth monitoring, crop production and management, financial risk assessment and insurance, and food security applications. This web application has the unique advantage of being highly transportable to other regions, since it has been designed so it can easily be adapted to other seasonal growth response patterns, and up-scaled to regional or national coverages for operational use.

  6. 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...

  7. 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

  8. Agricultural water use, crop water footprints and irrigation strategies in the seasonally dry Guanacaste region in Costa Rica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morillas, Laura; Johnson, Mark S.; Hund, Silja V.; Steyn, Douw G.

    2017-04-01

    Agriculture is the main productive sector and a major water-consuming sector in the seasonally-dry Guanacaste region of north-western Costa Rica. Agriculture in the region is intensifying at the same time that seasonal water scarcity is increasing. The climate of this region is characterized by a prolonged dry season from December to March, followed by a bimodal wet season from April to November. The wet season has historically experienced periodic oscillations in rainfall timing and amounts resulting from variations of several large-scale climatic features (El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation and the North Atlantic Oscillation). However, global circulation models now project more recurrent variations in total annual rainfall, changes in rainfall temporal distribution, and increased temperatures in this region. This may result in a lengthening of the dry season and an increase in water scarcity and water-related conflicts as water resources are already limited and disputed in this area. In fact, this region has just undergone a four-year drought over the 2012-2015 period, which has intensified water related conflicts and put agricultural production at risk. In turn, the recent drought has also increased awareness of the local communities regarding the regional threat of water scarcity and the need of a regional water planning. The overall goal of this research is to generate data to characterize water use by the agricultural sector in this region and asses its sustainability in the regional context. Towards this goal, eddy-covariance flux towers were deployed on two extensive farms growing regionally-representative crops (melon/rice rotation and sugarcane) to evaluate, monitor and quantify water use in large-scale farms. The two identically instrumented stations provide continuous measurements of evapotranspiration and CO2 fluxes, and are equipped with additional instrumentation to monitor

  9. Emission-conditioned iron dusts and their effects on the growth and yield of agricultural crops

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berge, H

    1966-01-01

    Experiments were performed to determine the effects of iron dusts from industrial plants in Germany on crops. For the purposes of the investigation, 1.5 g/day/m/sup 2/ of iron dust was spread over a designated farmland near Heiligenhaus. Potatoes were grown as the first experimental crop. Other crops studied were winter wheat and rye, rape and turnips. No yield reducing effect of iron dust resulted from the experiments. An actual yield-increasing effect of iron dust on the main product yields may be assumed, but cannot be proved with adequate statistical reliability.

  10. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhardwaj, Deepak; Ansari, Mohammad Wahid; Sahoo, Ranjan Kumar; Tuteja, Narendra

    2014-05-08

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers.

  11. 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.

  12. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers. PMID:24885352

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Uchida, S.; Tagami, K.

    2007-01-01

    The concentrations of 226 Ra 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 226 Ra in the soils collected in southwestern Japan were higher than those in northeastern Japan; however, no correlations between 226 Ra 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)

  14. Trading carbon for food: global comparison of carbon stocks vs. crop yields on agricultural land.

    Science.gov (United States)

    West, Paul C; Gibbs, Holly K; Monfreda, Chad; Wagner, John; Barford, Carol C; Carpenter, Stephen R; Foley, Jonathan A

    2010-11-16

    Expanding croplands to meet the needs of a growing population, changing diets, and biofuel production comes at the cost of reduced carbon stocks in natural vegetation and soils. Here, we present a spatially explicit global analysis of tradeoffs between carbon stocks and current crop yields. The difference among regions is striking. For example, for each unit of land cleared, the tropics lose nearly two times as much carbon (∼120 tons·ha(-1) vs. ∼63 tons·ha(-1)) and produce less than one-half the annual crop yield compared with temperate regions (1.71 tons·ha(-1)·y(-1) vs. 3.84 tons·ha(-1)·y(-1)). Therefore, newly cleared land in the tropics releases nearly 3 tons of carbon for every 1 ton of annual crop yield compared with a similar area cleared in the temperate zone. By factoring crop yield into the analysis, we specify the tradeoff between carbon stocks and crops for all areas where crops are currently grown and thereby, substantially enhance the spatial resolution relative to previous regional estimates. Particularly in the tropics, emphasis should be placed on increasing yields on existing croplands rather than clearing new lands. Our high-resolution approach can be used to determine the net effect of local land use decisions.

  15. 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)

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

    2015-01-01

    Abstract 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

  16. The role of N2O derived from crop-based biofuels, and from agriculture in general, in Earth's climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Keith A.; Mosier, Arvin R.; Crutzen, Paul J.; Winiwarter, Wilfried

    2012-01-01

    In earlier work, we compared the amount of newly fixed nitrogen (N, as synthetic fertilizer and biologically fixed N) entering agricultural systems globally to the total emission of nitrous oxide (N2O). We obtained an N2O emission factor (EF) of 3–5%, and applied it to biofuel production. For ‘first-generation’ biofuels, e.g. biodiesel from rapeseed and bioethanol from corn (maize), that require N fertilizer, N2O from biofuel production could cause (depending on N uptake efficiency) as much or more global warming as that avoided by replacement of fossil fuel by the biofuel. Our subsequent calculations in a follow-up paper, using published life cycle analysis (LCA) models, led to broadly similar conclusions. The N2O EF applies to agricultural crops in general, not just to biofuel crops, and has made possible a top-down estimate of global emissions from agriculture. Independent modelling by another group using bottom-up IPCC inventory methodology has shown good agreement at the global scale with our top-down estimate. Work by Davidson showed that the rate of accumulation of N2O in the atmosphere in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries was greater than that predicted from agricultural inputs limited to fertilizer N and biologically fixed N (Davidson, E. A. 2009 Nat. Geosci. 2, 659–662.). However, by also including soil organic N mineralized following land-use change and NOx deposited from the atmosphere in our estimates of the reactive N entering the agricultural cycle, we have now obtained a good fit between the observed atmospheric N2O concentrations from 1860 to 2000 and those calculated on the basis of a 4 per cent EF for the reactive N. PMID:22451102

  17. 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

    2004-05-05

    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

  18. 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

    practices while NLFA 20:0 appears to be a good marker of HRsoils despite season or location. The PLFA-based taxonomic biomarkers for total bacteria, Gramnegativebacteria and arbuscular mycorrhiza showed a significant trend NE>HR>LR in the wintersampling. HR management was also characterized by high levels......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...

  19. The economic impact of climate change on Kenyan crop agriculture: A Ricardian approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kabubo-Mariara, Jane; Karanja, Fredrick K.

    2007-06-01

    This paper measures the economic impact of climate on crops in Kenya. We use cross-sectional data on climate, hydrological, soil and household level data for a sample of 816 households. We estimate a seasonal Ricardian model to assess the impact of climate on net crop revenue per acre. The results show that climate affects crop productivity. There is a non-linear relationship between temperature and revenue on one hand and between precipitation and revenue on the other. Estimated marginal impacts suggest that global warming is harmful for crop productivity. Predictions from global circulation models confirm that global warming will have a substantial impact on net crop revenue in Kenya. The results also show that the temperature component of global warming is much more important than precipitation. Findings call for monitoring of climate change and dissemination of information to farmers to encourage adaptations to climate change. Improved management and conservation of available water resources, water harvesting and recycling of wastewater could generate water for irrigation purposes especially in the arid and semi-arid areas.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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...

  1. 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…

  2. Abundance and Diversity of Native Bumble Bees Associated with Agricultural Crops: The Willamette Valley Experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sujaya Rao

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available There are widespread concerns about declining populations of bumble bees due to conversion of native habitats to agroecosystems. Certain cropping systems, however, provide enormous foraging resources, and are beneficial for population build up of native bees, especially eusocial bees such as bumble bees. In this review, we present evidence of a flourishing bumble bee fauna in the Willamette Valley in western Oregon which we believe is sustained by cultivation of bee-pollinated crops which bloom in sequence, and in synchrony with foraging by queens and workers of a complex of bumble bee species. In support of our perspective, we describe the Oregon landscape and ascribe the large bumble bee populations to the presence of a pollen source in spring (cultivated blueberries followed by one in summer (red clover seed crops. Based on our studies, we recommend integration into conservation approaches of multiple agroecosystems that bloom in sequence for sustaining and building bumble bee populations.

  3. Accidental Strangulation Due to Entrapment of Saree in Crop Thrasher Machine in an Elderly Women Working at Agricultural Field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parchake, Manoj Bhausaheb; Kumre, Vikas; Kachare, Rajesh V

    2016-09-01

    Strangulation is generally considered as homicidal death and in accidental strangulation circumstantial evidence alone can point toward the accidental nature of incidence. In present case, a 71-year-old woman, wearing a saree (garment worn by traditional women in India) working in agricultural field, got entangled in the crop thrasher machine and got strangled. Immediately, she was taken to the nearest hospital, where she survived for 6 to 8 hours and then died. The autopsy reveals cross ribbon-shaped ligature mark on neck and anterior chest along with 1 puncture wound at the right lateral aspect of the neck. A lack of proper precaution and safety measures at agricultural field are other contributing factors. Accidental strangulation by saree is extremely rare, hence, this case is presented for its rarity and pattern of injury.

  4. 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

    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....... 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 lead to significant differences in the measured health biomarkers, except for a significant difference in plasma IgG levels....

  5. 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.

  6. Monitoring Agricultural Cropping Patterns across the Laurentian Great Lakes Basin Using MODIS-NDVI Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) 16-day composite data product (MOD12Q) was used to develop annual cropland and crop-specific map products (corn, soybeans, and wheat) for the Laurentian Great Lakes Basin (GLB). Th...

  7. Surface N Balances in Agricultural Crop production systems in China for the period 1980-2015

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sun, B.; Shen, R.P.; Bouwman, A.F.

    2008-01-01

    Surface nitrogen (N) balances for China's crop production systems were 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

  8. An overview of available crop growth and yield models for studies and assessments in agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Paola, Arianna; Valentini, Riccardo; Santini, Monia

    2016-02-01

    The scientific community offers numerous crop models with different levels of sophistication. In such a wide range of crop models, users should have the possibility to choose the most suitable, in terms of detail, scale and representativeness, to their objectives. However, even when an appropriate choice is made, model limitations should be clarified such that modelling studies are put in the proper perspective and robust applications are achieved. This work is an overview of available models to simulate crop growth and yield. A summary matrix with more than 70 crop models is provided, storing the main model characteristics that can help users to choose the proper tool according to their purposes. Overall, we found that two main aspects of models, despite their importance, are not always clear from the published references, i.e. the versatility of the models, in terms of reliable transferability to different conditions, and the degree of complexity. Hence, the developers of models should be encouraged to pay more attention to clarifying the model limitations and limits of applicability, and users should make an effort in proper model selection, to save time often devoted to iteration of tuning steps to force an inappropriate model to be adapted to their own purpose. © 2015 Society of Chemical Industry.

  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. Iowa Commercial Pesticide Applicator Manual, Category 1C: Agricultural Crop Disease Control. CS-11.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyvall, Robert F.; Ryan, Stephen O.

    This manual provides information needed to meet specific standards for certification as a pesticide applicator. It summarizes the economically important diseases of field and forage crops such as corn, soybeans and alfalfa. Special attention is given to pesticide application methods and safety. (CS)

  11. 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.

  12. An environmental-economic assessment of genetic modification of agricultural crops

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van den Bergh, J.C.J.M.; Holley, J.M.

    2002-01-01

    The advantages and disadvantages of genetic modification of organisms in agriculture are reviewed. These relate to the environment, human health, socio-economic effects, population growth, and differential consequences for developed and developing countries. An overall evaluation requires that

  13. "What we need is a crop ecologist": ecology and agricultural science in Progressive-era America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hersey, Mark D

    2011-01-01

    Though they are often seen as foils for each other, ecology and agricultural science co-evolved. With shared roots in late nineteenth-century botany, ecologists and agronomists fostered important connections during the Progressive era that have been largely overlooked despite a number of finely nuanced studies of ecology's origins. But if 'applied ecology' once effectively meant agriculture, over the course of the first decades of the twentieth century the relationship between ecology and scientific agriculture grew strained. Agriculturists narrowed their focus to increasing yields, and ecologists sought to establish their discipline as a distant theoretical science and so distanced themselves from its agricultural applications. By the end of World War I, the process of disciplinary specialization was well underway. In time, the two disciplines diverged so completely that the once vital connections between them were obscured and forgotten.

  14. What happens when crops are turned on? Simulating constitutive volatiles for tritrophic pest suppression across an agricultural landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaplan, Ian; Lewis, Danny

    2015-01-01

    Herbivore-induced plant volatiles, or HIPVs, are increasingly considered as a biocontrol enhancement tool by constitutively emitting these carnivore-attracting chemicals from agricultural fields. While ample data substantiate the olfactory preference of predators for HIPVs in laboratory environments, little is understood about the consequences of 'turning crops on' in the field. To explore the ramifications for arthropod pest management, a spatially explicit predator-prey population model was constructed that simulated a crop field releasing signals to recruit natural enemies from the surrounding landscape. Field size had an overriding influence on model outcome, both isolated as a single factor and interactively shaping responses to other parameters (e.g. habituation, foraging efficiency). Predator recruitment exponentially declined with increasing field size from nearly double the baseline density in small fields (225 individuals m(-2)) to a mere 4% increase (130 individuals m(-2)) in large fields. Correspondingly, HIPVs enhanced pest consumption in small fields (ca 50% fewer prey), while generating virtually no impact in large fields. Collectively, the model suggests that reducing the perimeter/core area ratio will ultimately constrain the utility of predator retention as a pest control tactic in commercial-sized fields and illustrates potential consequences of the widespread commercialization of this technology in agriculture. © 2014 Society of Chemical Industry.

  15. The soil moisture regimes beneath forest and an agricultural crop in southern India--Measurement and modelling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harding, R.J.; Hall, R.L.; Swaminath, M.H.; Murthy, K.V.

    1992-01-01

    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

  16. Per-field crop classification in irrigated agricultural regions in middle Asia using random forest and support vector machine ensemble

    Science.gov (United States)

    Löw, Fabian; Schorcht, Gunther; Michel, Ulrich; Dech, Stefan; Conrad, Christopher

    2012-10-01

    Accurate crop identification and crop area estimation are important for studies on irrigated agricultural systems, yield and water demand modeling, and agrarian policy development. In this study a novel combination of Random Forest (RF) and Support Vector Machine (SVM) classifiers is presented that (i) enhances crop classification accuracy and (ii) provides spatial information on map uncertainty. The methodology was implemented over four distinct irrigated sites in Middle Asia using RapidEye time series data. The RF feature importance statistics was used as feature-selection strategy for the SVM to assess possible negative effects on classification accuracy caused by an oversized feature space. The results of the individual RF and SVM classifications were combined with rules based on posterior classification probability and estimates of classification probability entropy. SVM classification performance was increased by feature selection through RF. Further experimental results indicate that the hybrid classifier improves overall classification accuracy in comparison to the single classifiers as well as useŕs and produceŕs accuracy.

  17. Agriculture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goetz, B.; Riss, A.; Zethner, G.

    2001-01-01

    This chapter deals with fertilization techniques, bioenergy from agriculture, environmental aspects of a common agriculture policy in the European Union, bio-agriculture, fruit farming in Austria and with environmental indicators in agriculture. In particular renewable energy sources (bio-diesel, biogas) from agriculture are studied in comparison to fossil fuels and other energy sources. (a.n.)

  18. Remote sensing in Iowa agriculture. [land use, crop identification, and soil mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahlstede, J. P. (Principal Investigator); Carlson, R. E.; Fenton, T. E.

    1974-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. Analysis of 1972 single-date coverage indicated that a complete crop classification was not attainable at the test sites. Good multi-date coverage during 1973 indicates that many of the problems encountered in 1972 will be minimized. In addition, the compilation of springtime imagery covering the entire state of Iowa has added a new dimension to interpretation of Iowa's natural resources. ERTS-1 has provided data necessary to achieve the broad synoptic view not attainable through other means. This should provide soils and crop researchers and land use planners a base map of Iowa. Granted and due to the resolution of ERTS-1, not all details are observable for many land use planning needs, but this gives a general and current view of Iowa.

  19. Long-term use of cover crops and no-till shift soil microbial community life strategies in agricultural soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Jeffrey; Scow, Kate

    2018-01-01

    Reducing tillage and growing cover crops, widely recommended practices for boosting soil health, have major impacts on soil communities. Surprisingly little is known about their impacts on soil microbial functional diversity, and especially so in irrigated Mediterranean ecosystems. In long-term experimental plots at the West Side Research and Extension Center in California’s Central Valley, we characterized soil microbial communities in the presence or absence of physical disturbance due to tillage, in the presence or absence of cover crops, and at three depths: 0–5, 5–15 and 15–30 cm. This characterization included qPCR for bacterial and archaeal abundances, DNA sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, and phylogenetic estimation of two ecologically important microbial traits (rRNA gene copy number and genome size). Total (bacterial + archaeal) diversity was higher in no-till than standard till; diversity increased with depth in no-till but decreased with depth in standard till. Total bacterial numbers were higher in cover cropped plots at all depths, while no-till treatments showed higher numbers in 0–5 cm but lower numbers at lower depths compared to standard tillage. Trait estimates suggested that different farming practices and depths favored distinctly different microbial life strategies. Tillage in the absence of cover crops shifted microbial communities towards fast growing competitors, while no-till shifted them toward slow growing stress tolerators. Across all treatment combinations, increasing depth resulted in a shift towards stress tolerators. Cover crops shifted the communities towards ruderals–organisms with wider metabolic capacities and moderate rates of growth. Overall, our results are consistent with decreasing nutrient availability with soil depth and under no-till treatments, bursts of nutrient availability and niche homogenization under standard tillage, and increases in C supply and variety provided by cover crops. Understanding how

  20. An overview of bacterial diseases of the most important agricultural crops in Nepal

    OpenAIRE

    Lamichhane, Jay Ram; Balestra, Giorgio M.; Mazzaglia, Angelo; Kshetri, MB; Varvaro, Leonardo

    2011-01-01

    Several surveys were carried out during three consecutive years (2007-2009) on the major crops cultivated in different districts of Nepal, in order to verify the possible presence of diseases caused by bacteria. The monitoring was carried out twice a year, in spring and autumn. During the survey we observed a wide range of bacterial diseases of plants. Most of the diseases were observed for the first time while others had been reported previously. Among the bacterial diseases observed for the...

  1. 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.

  2. Natural radioactivity, dose assessment and uranium uptake by agricultural crops at Khan Al-Zabeeb, Jordan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Al-Kharouf, Samer J.; Al-Hamarneh, Ibrahim F.; Dababneh, Munir

    2008-01-01

    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

  3. Cost evaluation of energy crops at farm gate in different EU countries and related agricultural issues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Calliope, P.; Dalianis, C.

    1996-01-01

    Interest on energy crops varies greatly among EU regions. Certain climatic conditions prevailing in the areas, determine the coice of the energy crop which is going to be used as raw material for energy production. Furthermore, energy markets, farm structure and set aside regulations as well as national policy play a critical role to biomass exploitation for energy purposes. A common methodology was developed (Moore, 1996) for comparing costs of different options for ''biomass-to-energy systems'' across six EU countries (figure 1). This methodology was developed in the framework of an AIR Concerted Action financed by DGXII of EU and entitled ''Development of a Standard Methodology for Integrating Non-Food Crops in Rural Areas with Niche Energy Markets''. Cost estimations were done form the first stage of raw material production till the final energy product (kWh of heat and electricity or lt of liquid biofuel. In this paper, only the raw material production cost estimation phase will be presented. (Author)

  4. Occurrence of chemical contaminants in peri-urban agricultural irrigation waters and assessment of their phytotoxicity and crop productivity

    OpenAIRE

    Margenat, Anna; Matamoros Mercadal, Víctor; Díez, Sergi; Cañameras Riba, Núria; Comas Angelet, Jordi; Bayona Termens, Josep Maria

    2017-01-01

    Water scarcity and water pollution have increased the pressure on water resources worldwide. This pressure is particularly important in highly populated areaswherewater demand exceeds the available natural resources. In this regard, water reuse has emerged as an excellent water source alternative for peri-urban agriculture. Nevertheless, itmust copewith the occurrence of chemical contaminants, ranging fromtrace elements (TEs) to organic microcontaminants. In this study, chemical contaminants ...

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. MIRCA2000—Global monthly irrigated and rainfed crop areas around the year 2000: A new high-resolution data set for agricultural and hydrological modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portmann, Felix T.; Siebert, Stefan; DöLl, Petra

    2010-03-01

    To support global-scale assessments that are sensitive to agricultural land use, we developed the global data set of monthly irrigated and rainfed crop areas around the year 2000 (MIRCA2000). With a spatial resolution of 5 arc min (about 9.2 km at the equator), MIRCA2000 provides both irrigated and rainfed crop areas of 26 crop classes for each month of the year. The data set covers all major food crops as well as cotton. Other crops are grouped into categories (perennial, annual, and fodder grasses). It represents multicropping systems and maximizes consistency with census-based national and subnational statistics. According to MIRCA2000, 25% of the global harvested areas are irrigated, with a cropping intensity (including fallow land) of 1.12, as compared to 0.84 for the sum of rainfed and irrigated harvested crops. For the dominant crops (rice (1.7 million km2 harvested area), wheat (2.1 million km2), and maize (1.5 million km2)), roughly 60%, 30%, and 20% of the harvested areas are irrigated, respectively, and half of the citrus, sugar cane, and cotton areas. While wheat and maize are the crops with the largest rainfed harvested areas (1.5 million km2 and 1.2 million km2, respectively), rice is clearly the crop with the largest irrigated harvested area (1.0 million km2), followed by wheat (0.7 million km2) and maize (0.3 million km2). Using MIRCA2000, 33% of global crop production and 44% of total cereal production were determined to come from irrigated agriculture.

  9. Automated canopy estimator (ACE): Enhancing crop modelling and decision making in agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Caribbean agriculture sector is dominated by small holdings, which are overly reliant on rainfall and highly dependent on manual means of optimization. The sector is therefore very vulnerable to the vagaries of climate variability and change, with rainfall variations being of particular concern...

  10. Forestry implications of agricultural short-rotation woody crops in the USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peter J. Ince; Alexander N. Moiseyev

    2002-01-01

    The purpose of this chapter is to discuss forestry implications of SRWC based on an economic analysis. As with the development of paper recycling, anticipating forestry implications of agricultural SRWC will depend in part on anticipating market conditions and economic impacts of technological developments. This chapter presents an analytic framework and market outlook...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rudel, Thomas K.; Kwon, Oh-Jung; Paul, B.K.

    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.

  13. Exposure of agricultural crops to nanoparticle CeO2 in biochar-amended soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar is seeing increased usage as an amendment in agricultural soils but the significance of nanoscale interactions between this additive and engineered nanoparticles (ENP) remains largely unknown. In the present study, corn (Zea mays), lettuce (Lactuca sativa), soybean (Glycine max) and zucchini...

  14. 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) 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 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

  15. New feedstocks for biofuels. Alternative 1st generation of energy crops; Nieuwe Grondstoffen voor Biobrandstoffen. Alternatieve 1e Generatie Energiegewassen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Elbersen, W. [Agrotechnology and Food Sciences Group, WUR-AFSG, Wageningen (Netherlands); Oyen, L. [Plant Resources of Tropical Africa, WUR-PROTA, Wageningen (Netherlands)

    2009-08-15

    A brief overview is provided of a number of alternative crops that can supply feedstocks for 1st generation biofuels and a brief analysis is conducted of the option for renewable biofuel production. [Dutch] Er wordt een kort overzicht gegeven van een aantal alternatieve gewassen die grondstoffen voor 1e generatie biobrandstoffen kunnen leveren en wordt er een korte analyse gegeven van de mogelijkheid voor duurzame biobrandstofproductie.

  16. Propagation and Growth of Chokecherry (Prunus virginaiana) as an Alternative, Water-wise, Fruit Crop for the Intermountain West

    OpenAIRE

    Crook, Jeremy R.

    2010-01-01

    Utah fruit growers have shown interest in chokecherry (Prunus virginiana) as an alternative crop that has low requirements for water and soil fertility. Consumers want native fruits like chokecherry that are healthy and taste good. Currently, the limiting factor in developing a chokecherry industry in Utah is the ability to propagate large numbers of plants for orchard establishment. Chokecherries are difficult to propagate by traditional means because of their low rooting percentages. Plant ...

  17. Combustion quality analysis of briquettes from variety of agricultural waste as source of alternative fuels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suryaningsih, S.; Nurhilal, O.; Yuliah, Y.; Mulyana, C.

    2017-05-01

    The increasing in world population and the industrial sector led to increased demand for energy sources. To do this by utilizing the agricultural waste as a fuel source of alternative energy in the form of bio briquette. The aim at this study was to obtain data onto the characteristics of a wide variety of biomass briquettes from waste agricultural industry. The basic ingredients used are biomass waste from coconut husks, sawdust, rice husks and coffee husks. Each of these biomass residues are dried, crushed, then mixed with starch adhesives. This mixture is molded and dried using sunlight. Each type of briquettes was characterized and analyzed the physical-chemical properties, including calorific value, water content, fixed carbon content and the results were compared with charcoal and coal that was used as fuel in public. The results showed that bio briquettes from coconut husks get the highest calorific value of 4,451 cal/g.

  18. Feeding behavior and crop damage caused by capybaras (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) in an agricultural landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felix, G A; Almeida Paz, I C L; Piovezan, U; Garcia, R G; Lima, K A O; Nääs, I A; Salgado, D D; Pilecco, M; Belloni, M

    2014-11-01

    This study aimed to assess the yield loss caused by capybaras in rural areas of Dourados-MS, their feeding periods, crop preferences and the landscape characteristics of farms that may affect the occurrence of capybara's herds. Semi-structured interviews in 24 different farms were done during a period between April 2010 and August 2011. Field observations were held at different times of the day, and also during the night in order to record peaks of the feeding behavior in six farms. Direct counting of capybaras along with the group of animals reported as seen by the farmers during the interviews was used to estimate the size of herds. Data was analyzed using the Principal Components Analyses and the Analytic Hierarchy Process. The average number of capybaras found in a regular herd was 18.8 ± 7.90 animals. The average number of capybara herd by farms was of 1.38 ± 0.92 while the average number of capybaras by farms was 32.33 ± 27.87. Capybaras selected rice (Oryza sativa) when it was available (14.5% of devastation in 1.18% of total planted area); however, the most eaten crop was corn (Zea mays) with 38.55% of loss rate in 16.17% of the total planted area. Capybaras ate mostly in the evening and during the night. The availability of water resources in the rural area predisposed the occurrence of capybara's herds.

  19. NABIC marker database: A molecular markers information network of agricultural crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Chang-Kug; Seol, Young-Joo; Lee, Dong-Jun; Jeong, In-Seon; Yoon, Ung-Han; Lee, Gang-Seob; Hahn, Jang-Ho; Park, Dong-Suk

    2013-01-01

    In 2013, National Agricultural Biotechnology Information Center (NABIC) reconstructs a molecular marker database for useful genetic resources. The web-based marker database consists of three major functional categories: map viewer, RSN marker and gene annotation. It provides 7250 marker locations, 3301 RSN marker property, 3280 molecular marker annotation information in agricultural plants. The individual molecular marker provides information such as marker name, expressed sequence tag number, gene definition and general marker information. This updated marker-based database provides useful information through a user-friendly web interface that assisted in tracing any new structures of the chromosomes and gene positional functions using specific molecular markers. The database is available for free at http://nabic.rda.go.kr/gere/rice/molecularMarkers/

  20. Time to Redefine Organic Agriculture: Can’t GM Crops Be Certified as Organics?

    OpenAIRE

    Amjad M. Husaini; Muhammad Sohail

    2018-01-01

    The challenges of sustainable food production without damaging the environment for a growing human population have increased considerably. The current agricultural practices involving chemical fertilizers and even organic farming are not sustainable in the long run and can have deleterious effects on the environment. Thus, new, innovative solutions need to be identified and propagated for tackling this. Among such innovations, that can complement conventional as well as organic farming method...

  1. Exposure of agricultural crops to nanoparticle CeO2 in biochar-amended soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Servin, Alia D; De la Torre-Roche, Roberto; Castillo-Michel, Hiram; Pagano, Luca; Hawthorne, Joseph; Musante, Craig; Pignatello, Joseph; Uchimiya, Minori; White, Jason C

    2017-01-01

    Biochar is seeing increased usage as an amendment in agricultural soils but the significance of nanoscale interactions between this additive and engineered nanoparticles (ENP) remains unknown. Corn, lettuce, soybean and zucchini were grown for 28 d in two different soils (agricultural, residential) amended with 0-2000 mg engineered nanoparticle (ENP) CeO 2  kg -1 and biochar (350 °C or 600 °C) at application rates of 0-5% (w/w). At harvest, plants were analyzed for biomass, Ce content, chlorophyll and lipid peroxidation. Biomass from the four species grown in residential soil varied with species and biochar type. However, biomass in the agricultural soil amended with biochar 600 °C was largely unaffected. Biochar co-exposure had minimal impact on Ce accumulation, with reduced or increased Ce content occurring at the highest (5%) biochar level. Soil-specific and biochar-specific effects on Ce accumulation were observed in the four species. For example, zucchini grown in agricultural soil with 2000 mg CeO 2  kg -1 and 350 °C biochar (0.5-5%) accumulated greater Ce than the control. However, for the 600 °C biochar, the opposite effect was evident, with decreased Ce content as biochar increased. A principal component analysis showed that biochar type accounted for 56-99% of the variance in chlorophyll and lipid peroxidation across the plants. SEM and μ-XRF showed Ce association with specific biochar and soil components, while μ-XANES analysis confirmed that after 28 d in soil, the Ce remained largely as CeO 2 . The current study demonstrates that biochar synthesis conditions significantly impact interactions with ENP, with subsequent effects on particle fate and effects. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  2. 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.

  3. Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender Simulation of Three Adjacent Row-Crop Watersheds in the Claypan Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anomaa Senaviratne, G M M M; Udawatta, Ranjith P; Baffaut, Claire; Anderson, Stephen H

    2013-01-01

    The Agricultural Policy Environmental Extender (APEX) model is used to evaluate best management practices on pollutant loading in whole farms or small watersheds. The objectives of this study were to conduct a sensitivity analysis to determine the effect of model parameters on APEX output and use the parameterized, calibrated, and validated model to evaluate long-term benefits of grass waterways. The APEX model was used to model three (East, Center, and West) adjacent field-size watersheds with claypan soils under a no-till corn ( L.)/soybean [ (L.) Merr.] rotation. Twenty-seven parameters were sensitive for crop yield, runoff, sediment, nitrogen (dissolved and total), and phosphorous (dissolved and total) simulations. The model was calibrated using measured event-based data from the Center watershed from 1993 to 1997 and validated with data from the West and East watersheds. Simulated crop yields were within ±13% of the measured yield. The model performance for event-based runoff was excellent, with calibration and validation > 0.9 and Nash-Sutcliffe coefficients (NSC) > 0.8, respectively. Sediment and total nitrogen calibration results were satisfactory for larger rainfall events (>50 mm), with > 0.5 and NSC > 0.4, but validation results remained poor, with NSC between 0.18 and 0.3. Total phosphorous was well calibrated and validated, with > 0.8 and NSC > 0.7, respectively. The presence of grass waterways reduced annual total phosphorus loadings by 13 to 25%. The replicated study indicates that APEX provides a convenient and efficient tool to evaluate long-term benefits of conservation practices. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  4. Arsenic contamination in irrigation water, agricultural soil and maize crop from an abandoned smelter site in Matehuala, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruíz-Huerta, Esther Aurora; de la Garza Varela, Alonso; Gómez-Bernal, Juan Miguel; Castillo, Francisco; Avalos-Borja, Miguel; SenGupta, Bhaskar; Martínez-Villegas, Nadia

    2017-10-05

    Mobility of Arsenic (As) from metallurgical wastes in Matehuala, Mexico has been accounted for ultra-high concentration of As in water (4.8-158mg/L) that is used for recreational purposes as well as cultivation of maize. In this study, we (i) measured As concentrations in soils irrigated with this water, (ii) investigated the geochemical controls of available As, and (iii) measured bioaccumulation of As in maize. Water, soil, and maize plant samples were collected from 3 different plots to determine As in environmental matrices as well as water soluble As in soils. Soil mineralogy was determined by X-ray diffraction analysis. Bioaccumulation of As in maize plants was estimated from the bioconcentration and translocation factors. We recorded As built-up in agricultural soils to the extent of 172mg/kg, and noted that this As is highly soluble in water (30% on average). Maize crops presented high bioaccumulation, up to 2.5 times of bioconcentration and 45% of translocation. Furthermore, we found that water extractable As was higher in soils rich in calcite, while it was lower in soils containing high levels of gypsum, but As bioconcentration showed opposite trend. Results from this study show that irrigation with As rich water represents a significant risk to the population consuming contaminated crops. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. 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.

  6. EFFECTIVENESS OF SELECTION OF WHEAT TO MODERN REQUIREMENTS FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF AGRICULTURE III. ENERGY PRODUCTIVITY OF CROPS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisaveta Vasileva

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Aim of the study was to conclude on adaptation of modern varieties to the requirements of sustainable agriculture and hence the effectiveness of their methods of selection with respect to these requirements. The comparison between genotypes in two directions - by the selection methods by which they were established and according to the time of their creation. Energy assessment shows that the gross energy yield of grain is higher ( in average 5% over standard for varieties produced by the methods of the Intervarietal hybridization and during the period 1995 to 1999. While absolute maximum values of the energy productivity of grain (at N18 and maximum average total gross energy productivity of crops (4% above standard were detected in genotypes generated by the methods of mutagenesis by irradiation with gamma rays. Absolute maximum value of the energy productivity of crops were reported in cultivar Zdravko (at N18, which was established by the method of plant biotechnology by combining and somaclonal variation.

  7. Cyanobacterial toxins: modes of actions, fate in aquatic and soil ecosystems, phytotoxicity and bioaccumulation in agricultural crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbel, Sylvain; Mougin, Christian; Bouaïcha, Noureddine

    2014-02-01

    The occurrence of harmful cyanobacterial blooms in surface waters is often accompanied by the production of a variety of cyanotoxins. These toxins are designed to target in humans and animals specific organs on which they act: hepatotoxins (liver), neurotoxins (nervous system), cytotoxic alkaloids, and dermatotoxins (skin), but they often have important side effects too. When introduced into the soil ecosystem by spray irrigation of crops they may affect the same molecular pathways in plants having identical or similar target organs, tissues, cells or biomolecules. There are also several indications that terrestrial plants, including food crop plants, can bioaccumulate cyanotoxins and present, therefore, potential health hazards for human and animals. The number of publications concerned with phytotoxic effects of cyanotoxins on agricultural plants has increased recently. In this review, we first examine different cyanotoxins and their modes of actions in humans and mammals and occurrence of target biomolecules in vegetable organisms. Then we present environmental concentrations of cyanotoxins in freshwaters and their fate in aquatic and soil ecosystems. Finally, we highlight bioaccumulation of cyanotoxins in plants used for feed and food and its consequences on animals and human health. Overall, our review shows that the information on the effects of cyanotoxins on non-target organisms in the terrestrial environment is particularly scarce, and that there are still serious gaps in the knowledge about the fate in the soil ecosystems and phytotoxicity of these toxins. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. 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)

    Mosnier, A.; Havlík, P.; Valin, H.; Baker, J.; Murray, B.; Feng, S.; Obersteiner, M.; McCarl, B.A.; Rose, S.K.; Schneider, U.A.

    2013-01-01

    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

  9. Cover crop residue effects on machine-induced soil compaction

    OpenAIRE

    Ess, Daniel R.

    1994-01-01

    Crop production systems which utilize the biomass produced by rye (Secale cereale ) to suppress weed growth and conserve soil moisture have been developed at Virginia Tech. The success of alternative, reduced-input crop production systems has encouraged research into the potential for breaking the traffic-tillage cycle associated with conventional tillage crop production systems. The fragile residues encountered in agricultural crop production, whether incorporated into the ...

  10. Importance and condition of forage crops seed production in agriculture of the Republic of Serbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Đokić Dragoslav

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available For contemporary and economical livestock production, especially cattle and sheep raising, it is necessary to achieve high production of livestock feed while reducing production costs. Improving the production of perennial grasses and legumes creates a good basis for the development of livestock production in different agro-ecological conditions of Serbia. It also establishes a link between farming and animal husbandry, which is of particular importance for the preservation and higher fertility of arable land and the protection of agro-ecosystems. An important factor for the cheaper production of livestock feed is the possibility to provide sufficient quantities of quality seeds at affordable prices. Production of quality seeds of local varieties of perennial legumes is possible to obtain sufficient amounts of good quality forage. Current situation in forage crop seed production of the Republic of Serbia is unsatisfactory because the seed of perennial grasses are mostly imported. Domestic production of alfalfa, red clover and birdsfoot trefoil met domestic needs only in some years. Seed of imported varieties are often not satisfactory because those varieties are not adapted to our local agro-ecological conditions. The present results provide the basis and direction for further researches that may provide solutions to increase seed yields and which will be widely accepted in practice, which will make the production more cost-effective. Institute for forage crops Kruševac is making a significant contribution to the development of technology of seed productions, especially alfalfa, red clover and perennial grasses. Therefore the role of the Institute is very important and necessary link between production, processing and trading seeds of perennial legumes and grasses in Serbia.

  11. Optimization Model for Machinery Selection of Multi-Crop Farms in Elsuki Agricultural Scheme

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mysara Ahmed Mohamed

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The optimization machinery model was developed to aid decision-makers and farm machinery managers in determining the optimal number of tractors, scheduling the agricultural operation and minimizing machinery total costs. For purpose of model verification, validation and application input data was collected from primary & secondary sources from Elsuki agricultural scheme for two seasons namely 2011-2012 and 2013-2014. Model verification was made by comparing the numbers of tractors of Elsuki agricultural scheme for season 2011-2012 with those estimated by the model. The model succeeded in reducing the number of tractors and operation total cost by 23%. The effect of optimization model on elements of direct cost saving indicated that the highest cost saving is reached with depreciation, repair and maintenance (23% and the minimum cost saving is attained with fuel cost (22%. Sensitivity analysis in terms of change in model input for each of cultivated area and total costs of operations showing that: Increasing the operation total cost by 10% decreased the total number of tractors after optimization by 23% and total cost of operations was also decreased by 23%. Increasing the cultivated area by 10%, decreased the total number of tractors after optimization by(12% and total cost of operations was also decreased by 12% (16669206 SDG(1111280 $ to 14636376 SDG(975758 $. For the case of multiple input effect of the area and operation total cost resulted in decrease maximum number of tractors by 12%, and the total cost of operations also decreased by 12%. It is recommended to apply the optimization model as pre-requisite for improving machinery management during implementation of machinery scheduling.

  12. Migration of radionuclides in the soil-crop-food product system and assessment of agricultural countermeasures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bogdevitch, I.; Ageyets, V.

    1996-01-01

    Studies on dynamics of redistribution of radionuclides through of profile of the different soils on uncultivated agricultural lands of Belarus during the 1986-1995 period show that vertical migration occurs with low rate. In arable soils the radionuclides are distributed in comparatively uniform way through the whole depth of the 25-30 cm cultivated layer. Investigations on migration of radionuclides with wind erosion on the drained series of wet sandy and peat soils and water erosion on sloping lands show that one should take into consideration the secondary contamination of soils while forecasting a possible accumulation of radionuclides in farm products

  13. 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....

  14. 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

  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.

  16. Food crop production, nutrient availability, and nutrient intakes in Bangladesh: exploring the agriculture-nutrition nexus with the 2010 Household Income and Expenditure Survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fiedler, John L

    2014-12-01

    Systematic collection of national agricultural data has been neglected in many low- and middle-income countries for the past 20 years. Commonly conducted nationally representative household surveys collect substantial quantities of highly underutilized food crop production data. To demonstrate the potential usefulness of commonly available household survey databases for analyzing the agriculture-nutrition nexus. Using household data from the 2010 Bangladesh Household Income and Expenditure Survey, the role and significance of crop selection, area planted, yield, nutrient production, and the disposition of 34 food crops in affecting the adequacy of farming households' nutrient availability and nutrient intake status are explored. The adequacy of each farming household's available energy, vitamin A, calcium, iron, and zinc and households' apparent intakes and intake adequacies are estimated. Each household's total apparent nutrient intake adequacies are estimated, taking into account the amount of each crop that households consume from their own production, together with food purchased or obtained from other sources. Even though rice contains relatively small amounts of micronutrients, has relatively low nutrient density, and is a relatively poor source of nutrients compared with what other crops can produce on a given tract of land, because so much rice is produced in Bangladesh, it is the source of 90% of the total available energy, 85% of the zinc, 67% of the calcium, and 55% of the iron produced by the agricultural sector. The domination of agriculture and diet by rice is a major constraint to improving nutrition in Bangladesh. Simple examples of how minor changes in the five most common cropping patterns could improve farming households' nutritional status are provided. Household surveys' agricultural modules can provide a useful tool for better understanding national nutrient production realities and possibilities.

  17. 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.

  18. Agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    The EPA Agriculture Resource Directory offers comprehensive, easy-to-understand information about environmental stewardship on farms and ranches; commonsense, flexible approaches that are both environmentally protective and agriculturally sound.

  19. 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. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Energy in agriculture

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Le Roux, E J

    1980-02-01

    Agriculture is an important component of Canadian energy policy. There are many opportunities for both the production of energy from agricultural processes and the conservation of energy in agricultural production. These opportunities, as well as current practices and research in progress, are outlined in this report. Energy sources in agriculture include biomass (straw and other residues), methane production from manure, and oil and alcohol from crops. Alternate energy sources such as solar and wind power conserve conventional resources, and additional conservation opportunities exist in the use of greenhouses, waste heat and energy-efficient farming processes. Research programs and possible trends are outlined. 10 figs., 3 tabs.

  1. Bayer CropScience model village project: Contributions to agricultural suppliers’ competitiveness and human development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regina Moczadlo

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available 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 suppliers based on trust from both sides, can lead to a higher competitiveness of the whole supply chain and simultaneously improve human development. The impacts on the latter are evaluated using the capability approach (CA developed by Amartya Sen (2000, c1999. The case of the MVP indicates the potential of companies to contribute to human development on a strategic win-win basis. Actions have to be distinguished based on the living and financial conditions different supplier groups face. In the future, the MVP aims at assessing whether and how MNCs may be able to combine competitive enhancement with human development, provided that potential corporate risks for the villagers’ human development are also taken into account.

  2. The yield gap of major food crops in family agriculture in the tropics: Assessment and analysis through field surveys and modelling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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,

  3. 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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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

  4. A Preliminary Study on Termite Mound Soil as Agricultural Soil for Crop Production in South West, Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. E. Omofunmi

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available It is a popular belief of the people in the Southern region of Nigeria that a land infested with termite usually brings prosperity to the land owner regardless of the type of its usage. Therefore, the present study assessed termite mounds soil properties which are important to crop production. Two soil samples were collected and their physical and chemical properties determined in accordance with American Public Health Association (APHA, 2005. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics. The textural classes showed that the termite mound soil was sand clay loam while the surrounding soil was clay loam. This results revealed that: Termites’ activity induced significant chemical changes in the soil possible due to the materials used in building their nests. There was increase the concentrations of nitrogen, phosphorus, Potassium, calcium and magnesium higher in the termite’s mounds, while the micro-nutrients (zinc, iron and copper except sulphur and manganese lower in the soil infested by termites. There were significant differences (p ≥ 0.05 between termite mound soil and surrounding soil. It showed highly positive correlation between termite mound and surrounding soil (r= 0.92. The concentration of the soil properties around the termite mound are within the range of soil nutrients suitable for arable crop production. Termite mound soil is recommended to be used as an alternative to local farmers who cannot afford to buy expensive inorganic fertilizers.

  5. Dynamic cropping systems: Holistic approach for dryland agricultural systems in the northern Great Plains of North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cropping systems over the past century have developed greater crop specialization, more effectively conserve our soil and water resources, and are more resilient. The purpose of this chapter is to discuss the evolution of cropping systems in the Northern Great Plains and provide an approach to crop...

  6. PRACT (Prototyping Rotation and Association with Cover crop and no Till) - a tool for designing conservation agriculture systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Naudin, K.; Husson, M.O.; Scopel, E.; Auzoux, S.; Giller, K.E.

    2015-01-01

    Moving to more agroecological cropping systems implies deep changes in the organization of cropping systems. We propose a method for formalizing the process of innovating cropping system prototype design using a tool called PRACT (Prototyping Rotation and Association with Cover crop and no Till)

  7. 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.

  8. Fate of Carbofuran and Interaction with Agricultural Chemicals in a Soil-Crop-Water System

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koeppe, M.; Lichtenstein, E.P.

    1981-01-01

    Full text: The fate, movement, and metabolism of 14 C-(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 14 C leached through the soil into the aquaria. Thus, less 14 C-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 14 C-residues as the corn grown under percolating conditions, 22.16 and 10.78% of applied C, respectively. 14 C-(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 14 C-residues. After 3 weeks incubation 14 C-residues associated with the water, lake mud, Elodea plants and guppies were 2.14, 19.17, 3.65, and 0.19% of applied 14 C, respectively. Initially, the percolated water containing 14 C-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 14 C-residues had either degraded to non-toxic compounds or were no longer associated with the water. (author)

  9. 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

  10. Biomass pyrolysis: use of some agricultural wastes for alternative fuel production

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kimura, Lygia Maestri; Santos, Larissa Cardoso; Vieira, Paula Fraga; Parreira, Priciane Martins; Henrique, Humberto Molinar

    2009-01-01

    The use of biomass for energy generation has aroused great attention and interest because of the global climate changes, environmental pollution and reduction of availability of fossil energy. This study deals with pyrolysis of four agricultural wastes (sawdust, sugarcane straw, chicken litter and cashew nut shell) in a fixed bed pyrolytic reactor. The yields of char, liquid and gas were quantified at 300, 400, 500, 600 and 700 deg C and the temperature and pressure effects were investigated. Pyrolytic liquids produced were separated into aqueous and oil phases. XRF spectroscopy was used for qualitative and quantitative elemental analysis of the liquids and solids produced at whole temperature range. Calorific value analysis of liquids and solids were also performed for energy content evaluation. Experimental results showed sawdust, sugarcane straw and cashew nut waste have very good potential for using in pyrolysis process for alternative fuel production. (author)

  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. 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)

    Ochoa, K; Carrillo, S; Gutierrez, L

    2014-01-01

    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

  13. 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.

  14. Soil salinity: Germination tolerance of alternative oilseed crops for soil health

    Science.gov (United States)

    World-wide, saline soils contribute to over US$27.3 billion in agricultural losses annually by reducing plant growth through osmotic imbalances and ion toxicity. Nearly 800,000 ha of salt affected land is located in the northern Great Plains. Limited information is available on the germination of al...

  15. 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 corn). An omission of biochar addition at the same nitrogen addition rate resulted in a yield decrease of 10 % for barley although the total N uptake was 11 % higher but P and K uptake decreased by 14 and 6 %. This indicates that the

  16. The cooperatives not agricultural as an alternative to the local development in the Isla de la Juventud

    OpenAIRE

    Liudyana Dominguez Matos

    2017-01-01

    The work has as objective to analyze the economic results - financial of the non agricultural cooperative “The Kitchen" as alternative for the local development in the Island of Youth, for that to leaned in the economic techniques - financial existent, as well as the comparison, among the access prices to the raw material and the prices of sales that are established for the state gastronomic entities and the non agricultural cooperative. Of the analyzed numbers it was known that the cooperati...

  17. Integrating High Resolution Water Footprint and GIS for Promoting Water Efficiency in the Agricultural Sector: A Case Study of Plantation Crops in the Jordan Valley.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shtull-Trauring, Eliav; Aviani, Ido; Avisar, Dror; Bernstein, Nirit

    2016-01-01

    Addressing the global challenges to water security requires a better understanding of humanity's use of water, especially the agricultural sector that accounts for 70% of global withdrawals. This study combined high resolution-data with a GIS system to analyze the impact of agricultural practices, crop type, and spatial factors such as drainage basins, climate, and soil type on the Water Footprint (WF) of agricultural crops. The area of the study, the northern Lower Jordan Valley, covers 1121 ha in which three main plantation crops are grown: banana (cultivated in open-fields or net-houses), avocado and palm-dates. High-resolution data sources included GIS layers of the cultivated crops and a drainage pipe-system installed in the study area; meteorological data (2000-2013); and crop parameters (yield and irrigation recommendations). First, the study compared the WF of the different crops on the basis of yield and energy produced as well as a comparison to global values and local irrigation recommendations. The results showed that net-house banana has the lowest WF based on all different criteria. However, while palm-dates showed the highest WF for the yield criteria, it had the second lowest WF for energy produced, emphasizing the importance of using multiple parameters for low and high yield crop comparisons. Next, the regional WF of each drainage basin in the study area was calculated, demonstrating the strong influence of the Gray WF, an indication of the amount of freshwater required for pollution assimilation. Finally, the benefits of integrating GIS and WF were demonstrated by computing the effect of adopting net-house cultivation throughout the area of study with a result a reduction of 1.3 MCM irrigation water per year. Integrating the WF methodology and local high-resolution data using GIS can therefore promote and help quantify the benefits of adopting site-appropriate crops and agricultural practices that lower the WF by increasing yield, reducing water

  18. 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)

    Yadgarov, Kh.T.; Pugachev, V.V.; Kim, A.A.

    2005-01-01

    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

  19. A global analysis of alternative tillage and crop establishment practices for economically and environmentally efficient rice production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chakraborty, Debashis; Ladha, Jagdish Kumar; Rana, Dharamvir Singh; Jat, Mangi Lal; Gathala, Mahesh Kumar; Yadav, Sudhir; Rao, Adusumilli Narayana; Ramesha, Mugadoli S; Raman, Anitha

    2017-08-24

    Alternative tillage and rice establishment options should aim at less water and labor to produce similar or improved yields compared with traditional puddled-transplanted rice cultivation. The relative performance of these practices in terms of yield, water input, and economics varies across rice-growing regions. A global meta and mixed model analysis was performed, using a dataset involving 323 on-station and 9 on-farm studies (a total of 3878 paired data), to evaluate the yield, water input, greenhouse gas emissions, and cost and net return with five major tillage/crop establishment options. Shifting from transplanting to direct-seeding was advantageous but the change from conventional to zero or reduced tillage reduced yields. Direct-seeded rice under wet tillage was the best alternative with yield advantages of 1.3-4.7% (p Direct-seeding under zero tillage was another potential alternative with high savings in water input and cost of cultivation, with no yield penalty. The alternative practices reduced methane emissions but increased nitrous oxide emissions. Soil texture plays a key role in relative yield advantages, and therefore refinement of the practice to suit a specific agro-ecosystem is needed.

  20. Exploring the effects of nitrogen fertilization management alternatives on nitrate loss and crop yields in tile-drained fields in Illinois.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Hanseok; Bhattarai, Rabin

    2018-05-01

    It is vital to manage the excessive use of nitrogen (N) fertilizer in corn production, the single largest consumer of N fertilizer in the United States, in order to achieve more sustainable agroecosystems. This study comprehensively explored the effects of N fertilization alternatives on nitrate loss and crop yields using the Root Zone Water Quality Model (RZWQM) in tile-drained fields in central Illinois. The RZWQM was tested for the prediction of tile flow, nitrate loss, and crop yields using eight years (1993-2000) of observed data and showed satisfactory model performances from statistical and graphical evaluations. Our model simulations demonstrated the maximum return to nitrogen (MRTN) rate (193 kgha -1 ), a newly advised N recommendation by the Illinois Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy (INLRS), can be further reduced. Nitrate loss was reduced by 10.3% and 29.8%, but corn yields decreased by 0.3% and 1.9% at 156 and 150 kgha -1 of N fertilizer rate in the study sites A and E, respectively. Although adjustment of N fertilization timing presented a further reduction in nitrate loss, there was no optimal timing to ensure nitrate loss reduction and corn productivity. For site A, 100% spring application was the most productive and 40% fall, 10% pre-plant, and 50% side dress application generated the lowest nitrate loss. For site E, the conventional N application timing was verified as the best practice in both corn production and nitrate loss reduction. Compared to surface broadcast placement, injected N fertilizer in spring increased corn yield, but may also escalate nitrate loss. This study presented the need of an adaptive N fertilizer management due to the heterogeneity in agricultural systems, and raised the importance of timing and placement of N fertilizer, as well as further reduction in fertilizer rate to devise a better in-field N management practice. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Agriculture: Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Climate change affects agricultural producers because agriculture and fisheries depend on specific climate conditions. Temperature changes can cause crop planting dates to shift. Droughts and floods due to climate change may hinder farming practices.

  2. Alternative stable states and the sustainability of forests, grasslands, and agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Kirsten A.; Bauch, Chris T.; Anand, Madhur

    2016-01-01

    Endangered forest–grassland mosaics interspersed with expanding agriculture and silviculture occur across many parts of the world, including the southern Brazilian highlands. This natural mosaic ecosystem is thought to reflect alternative stable states driven by threshold responses of recruitment to fire and moisture regimes. The role of adaptive human behavior in such systems remains understudied, despite its pervasiveness and the fact that such ecosystems can exhibit complex dynamics. We develop a nonlinear mathematical model of coupled human–environment dynamics in mosaic systems and social processes regarding conservation and economic land valuation. Our objective is to better understand how the coupled dynamics respond to changes in ecological and social conditions. The model is parameterized with southern Brazilian data on mosaic ecology, land-use profits, and questionnaire results concerning landowner preferences and conservation values. We find that the mosaic presently resides at a crucial juncture where relatively small changes in social conditions can generate a wide variety of possible outcomes, including complete loss of mosaics; large-amplitude, long-term oscillations between land states that preclude ecosystem stability; and conservation of the mosaic even to the exclusion of agriculture/silviculture. In general, increasing the time horizon used for conservation decision making is more likely to maintain mosaic stability. In contrast, increasing the inherent conservation value of either forests or grasslands is more likely to induce large oscillations—especially for forests—due to feedback from rarity-based conservation decisions. Given the potential for complex dynamics, empirically grounded nonlinear dynamical models should play a larger role in policy formulation for human–environment mosaic ecosystems. PMID:27956605

  3. Alternative stable states and the sustainability of forests, grasslands, and agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Kirsten A; Bauch, Chris T; Anand, Madhur

    2016-12-20

    Endangered forest-grassland mosaics interspersed with expanding agriculture and silviculture occur across many parts of the world, including the southern Brazilian highlands. This natural mosaic ecosystem is thought to reflect alternative stable states driven by threshold responses of recruitment to fire and moisture regimes. The role of adaptive human behavior in such systems remains understudied, despite its pervasiveness and the fact that such ecosystems can exhibit complex dynamics. We develop a nonlinear mathematical model of coupled human-environment dynamics in mosaic systems and social processes regarding conservation and economic land valuation. Our objective is to better understand how the coupled dynamics respond to changes in ecological and social conditions. The model is parameterized with southern Brazilian data on mosaic ecology, land-use profits, and questionnaire results concerning landowner preferences and conservation values. We find that the mosaic presently resides at a crucial juncture where relatively small changes in social conditions can generate a wide variety of possible outcomes, including complete loss of mosaics; large-amplitude, long-term oscillations between land states that preclude ecosystem stability; and conservation of the mosaic even to the exclusion of agriculture/silviculture. In general, increasing the time horizon used for conservation decision making is more likely to maintain mosaic stability. In contrast, increasing the inherent conservation value of either forests or grasslands is more likely to induce large oscillations-especially for forests-due to feedback from rarity-based conservation decisions. Given the potential for complex dynamics, empirically grounded nonlinear dynamical models should play a larger role in policy formulation for human-environment mosaic ecosystems.

  4. 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.

  5. Impact of seasonal forecast use on agricultural income in a system with varying crop costs and returns: an empirically-grounded simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunda, T.; Bazuin, J. T.; Nay, J.; Yeung, K. L.

    2017-03-01

    Access to seasonal climate forecasts can benefit farmers by allowing them to make more informed decisions about their farming practices. However, it is unclear whether farmers realize these benefits when crop choices available to farmers have different and variable costs and returns; multiple countries have programs that incentivize production of certain crops while other crops are subject to market fluctuations. We hypothesize that the benefits of forecasts on farmer livelihoods will be moderated by the combined impact of differing crop economics and changing climate. Drawing upon methods and insights from both physical and social sciences, we develop a model of farmer decision-making to evaluate this hypothesis. The model dynamics are explored using empirical data from Sri Lanka; primary sources include survey and interview information as well as game-based experiments conducted with farmers in the field. Our simulations show that a farmer using seasonal forecasts has more diversified crop selections, which drive increases in average agricultural income. Increases in income are particularly notable under a drier climate scenario, when a farmer using seasonal forecasts is more likely to plant onions, a crop with higher possible returns. Our results indicate that, when water resources are scarce (i.e. drier climate scenario), farmer incomes could become stratified, potentially compounding existing disparities in farmers’ financial and technical abilities to use forecasts to inform their crop selections. This analysis highlights that while programs that promote production of certain crops may ensure food security in the short-term, the long-term implications of these dynamics need careful evaluation.

  6. 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)

    Pei, Hongwei; Shen, Yanjun; Liu, Changming; Scanlon, Bridget R; Reedy, Robert C; Long, Di

    2015-01-01

    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. (letter)

  7. Digital soil mapping as a basis for climatically oriented agriculture a thematic on the territory of the national crop testing fields of the Republic of Tatarstan, Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahabiev, I. A.; Giniyatullin, K. G.; Ryazanov, S. S.

    2018-01-01

    The concept of climate-optimized agriculture (COA) of the UN FAO implies the transformation of agriculture techniques in conditions of changing climate. It is important to implement a timely transition to the concept of COA and sustainable development of soil resources, accurate digital maps of spatial distribution of soils and soil properties are needed. Digital mapping of soil humus content was carried out on the territory of the national crop testing fields (NCTF) of the Republic of Tatarstan (Russian Federation) and the accuracy of the maps obtained was estimated.

  8. Fibre crops as alternative land use for radioactively contaminated arable land

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vandenhove, H.; Van Hees, M.

    2005-01-01

    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 -3 m 2 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 m 2 kg -1 . For hemp, straw and fibres were mechanically separated and TF to straw was about 0.5 x 10 -3 m 2 kg -1 and to fibres 1.0 x 10 -3 m 2 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 m 2 kg -1 ) consumption of hemp seed products should be considered with care

  9. Impact of vegetable crop agriculture on anopheline agressivity and malaria transmission in urban and less urbanized settings of the South region of Cameroon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akono, Patrick Ntonga; Mbida, Jean Arthur Mbida; Tonga, Calvin; Belong, Philippe; Ngo Hondt, Odette Etoile; Magne, Gaëlle Tamdem; Peka, Marie Florence; Lehman, Leopold Gustave

    2015-05-28

    The use of inland valley swamps for vegetable crop agriculture contributes to food security in urban and less urbanized settings in Africa. The impact of this agriculture on aggressive mosquitoes' diversity and malaria transmission in central Africa is poorly documented. This study is aimed at assessing the impact of vegetable crop agriculture on these entomological parameters in urban and less urbanized settings of the forest area, south of Cameroon. The human bait technique was used for the capture of aggressive mosquitoes from January to December 2012. For three consecutive days each month, captures were performed on volunteers in hydro-agricultural and river bank sites of Akonolinga and Yaoundé. Physico-chemical characteristics of mosquito breeding sites were recorded. Molecular alongside morpho-taxonomic techniques were used for the identification of mosquito species; ELISA test was used to reveal Plasmodium falciparum infected mosquitoes through the detection of CSP. Mosquito diversity, aggressivity and malaria transmission in sites and settings were determined and compared. Biting rates were higher in hydro-agricultural sites of less urbanized and urban settings (31.8 b/p/n and 28.6 b/p/n respectively) than in river banks sites (6.83 b/p/n and 3.64 b/p/n respectively; p agricultural sites 2 species were captured in the urban setting versus 4 in the less urbanized setting, meanwhile in river bank sites, 3 species were captured in the urban setting versus 4 species in the less urbanized setting. An. nili s.s. was found in river banks only. An. hancocki was not found to insure Plasmodium falciparum Welch transmission. EIR in hydro-agricultural sites varied from 1.86 ib/p/n (urban area) to 2.13 ib/p/n (less urbanized area) with higher rates in April/May and August. Overall, EIR was higher in less urbanized areas (p agriculture (p = 0.2). These results highlight the need for specific preventive measures that take into account the ecological peculiarities

  10. Integrating high resolution Water Footprint and GIS analyses for promoting water-efficiency in the agricultural sector: A case study of plantation crops in the Jordan Valley

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eliav Shtull-Trauring

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Addressing the global challenges to water security requires a better understanding of humanity’s use of water, especially the agricultural sector that accounts for 70% of global withdrawals. This study combined high resolution-data with a GIS system to analyze the impact of agricultural practices, crop type and spatial factors such as drainage basins, climate and soil type on the Water Footprint (WF of agricultural crops. The area of the study, the northern Lower Jordan Valley, covers 1121 ha in which three plantation crops are grown: banana (cultivated in open-fields or net-houses, avocado and palm-dates. High-resolution data sources included GIS layers of the cultivated crops and a drainage pipe-system installed in the study area; meteorological data (2000-2013; and crop parameters (yield, irrigation recommendations and profit. First, the study compared the WF of the different crops on the basis of yield and energy produced as well as a comparison to global values and local irrigation recommendations. The results showed that net-house banana has the lowest WF based on all different criteria. However, while palm-dates showed the highest WF for the yield criteria, it had the second lowest WF for energy produced and profit, emphasizing the importance of using multiple parameters for low and high yield crop comparisons. Next, the regional WF of each drainage basin in the study area was calculated, demonstrating the strong influence of the Grey WF, an indication of the amount of freshwater required for pollution assimilation. Finally, the benefits of integrating GIS and WF were demonstrated by computing the effect of adopting net-house cultivation throughout the area of study with a result a reduction of 1.3 MCM irrigation water per year. Integrating the WF methodology and local high-resolution data using GIS can therefore promote and help quantify the benefits of adopting site-appropriate crops and agroecological practices that lower the WF by

  11. Environmental impacts of alternative agricultural uses of poorly drained farm land in Ireland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Pooja; Humphreys, James; Holden, Nicholas M

    2018-05-07

    Abolition of the milk quota in the European Union and favourable market conditions have stimulated the expansion of the dairy sector in Ireland, causing more milk to be produced from poorly drained land. This work evaluated the environmental impacts of alternative agricultural uses for poorly drained farm land in Ireland using life cycle assessment (LCA). The avoided burden of the displaced product was used to calculate the net environmental consequences in the context of regional or global markets. The impact categories evaluated were climate change, eutrophication and acidification, all expressed per hectare of land for the alternative land uses, which were pasture-based milk, suckler beef and lowland sheep production and coniferous forestry. Beef had the lowest net climate change impact with global marginal and average product substitution while sheep had the lowest net climate change impact with European displaced product. For net eutrophication and acidification, dairy had the lowest impacts with European and global average displaced product. With global marginal displaced product, forestry had the lowest net eutrophication impact and sheep had the lowest net acidification impact. From an Irish perspective, forestry would generate the lowest environmental impacts and would also increase soil carbon stock, but this was not the best land use option from global perspective. Overall it can be concluded that a pasture based dairy or sheep system would have the greatest net global impact reduction (i.e. greatest global benefit) as land use options for farms with poorly drained soils. Prioritizing climate change, suckler beef system would perhaps be more favourable. It is clear that the choice of the displaced regional or global co-product from the market has a great influence on the results and there is a need to consider more detailed consumption modelling to better understand the substitution process. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. 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

  13. Slow pyrolyzed biochars from crop residues for soil metal(loid) immobilization and microbial community abundance in contaminated agricultural soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Igalavithana, Avanthi Deshani; Park, Jinje; Ryu, Changkook; Lee, Young Han; Hashimoto, Yohey; Huang, Longbin; Kwon, Eilhann E; Ok, Yong Sik; Lee, Sang Soo

    2017-06-01

    This study evaluated the feasibility of using biochars produced from three types of crop residues for immobilizing Pb and As and their effects on the abundance of microbial community in contaminated lowland paddy (P-soil) and upland (U-soil) agricultural soils. Biochars were produced from umbrella tree [Maesopsis eminii] wood bark [WB], cocopeat [CP], and palm kernel shell [PKS] at 500 °C by slow pyrolysis at a heating rate of 10 °C min -1 . Soils were incubated with 5% (w w -1 ) biochars at 25 °C and 70% water holding capacity for 45 d. The biochar effects on metal immobilization were evaluated by sequential extraction of the treated soil, and the microbial community was determined by microbial fatty acid profiles and dehydrogenase activity. The addition of WB caused the largest decrease in Pb in the exchangeable fraction (P-soil: 77.7%, U-soil: 91.5%), followed by CP (P-soil: 67.1%, U-soil: 81.1%) and PKS (P-soil: 9.1%, U-soil: 20.0%) compared to that by the control. In contrast, the additions of WB and CP increased the exchangeable As in U-soil by 84.6% and 14.8%, respectively. Alkalinity and high phosphorous content of biochars might be attributed to the Pb immobilization and As mobilization, respectively. The silicon content in biochars is also an influencing factor in increasing the As mobility. However, no considerable effects of biochars on the microbial community abundance and dehydrogenase activity were found in both soils. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Methodological approaches to analysis of agricultural countermeasures on radioactive contaminated areas: Estimation of effectiveness and comparison of different alternatives

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yatsalo, B.I.; Hedemann Jensen, P.; Alexakhin, R.M.

    1997-01-01

    Methodological aspects of countermeasure analysis in the long-term period after a nuclear accident are discussed for agriculture countermeasures for illustrative purposes. The estimates of effectiveness fbr specific countermeasures as well as methods of justified action levels assessments...... and comparison of different alternatives (countermeasures) based on the use of several criteria are considered....

  15. Agricultural land purchases for alternative uses - evidence from two farming areas in the Western Cape Province, South Africa - AEASA Conference

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Reed, L

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available The presentation starts with a look at the variety of uses of agricultural lands and the transition towards a multifunctional rural environment. A study to determine the extent of alternative land use transactions in WC, and to collect info...

  16. 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.

  17. AMINO ACID-BASED FERTILIZER AS AN ALTERNATIVE TO CALDA VIÇOSA IN ORGANIC AGRICULTURE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego Fontebasso Pelizari Pinto

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to propose a mixture of micronutrients with amino acid-based foliar fertilizer as an alternative to calda viçosa for application in organic agriculture. The study was conducted in two simultaneous trials in an experimental field in Ipeúna, SP, Brazil. The test plant was carioca type dry edible bean cv. Pérola. The treatments in trial 1 were: Control 1 = water; FA = JK® amino acid-based foliar fertilizer; and FA+Mi = FA + CuSO4 + ZnSO4 + MnSO4 + H3BO3. In trial 2, the FA treatment was substituted by calda viçosa (CVi. The treatments were through spray application three times. Dry edible bean leaves were sampled for determination of macronutrient and micronutrient concentrations. Platings of the application rates used in the treatments were performed in the laboratory in a mixture with Bacillus thuringiensis and with Beauveria bassiana to compare the degree of compatibility by means of colony forming units (CFU. The FA+Mi and CVi treatments raised the concentrations of Zn, Cu, and Mn in the leaves. The FA+Mi was compatible, the FA was a stimulant, and the CVi was noxious to B. bassiana and to B. thuringiensis when integrated in the spray mixture.

  18. Agricultural Water Conservation in the Colorado River Basin: Alternatives to Permanent Fallowing Research Synthesis and Outreach Workshops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Udall, B. H.; Peterson, G.

    2017-12-01

    As increasing water scarcity occurs in the Colorado River Basin, water users have been looking for new sources of supply. The default solution is to transfer water from the cheapest and most plentiful source — agriculture — to supply new water demands in the region. However, if pursued in haste, and without sufficient information, the likely outcome may be permanent fallowing, along with serious economic disruption to agricultural communities, loss of valuable farmland, loss of important amenity values, and a loss of a sense of place in many rural communities within the basin. This project was undertaken to explore ways to minimize harm to agriculture if transfers out of agriculture were to occur. Four detailed synthesis reports of the four common methods used to temporarily transfer water from agriculture were produced by the project. The water saving methods covered by the reports are: (1) Deficit Irrigation of Alfalfa and other Forages; (2) Rotational Fallowing; (3) Crop Switching; and (4) Irrigation Efficiency and Water Conservation After the reports were drafted, three workshops were held, one in the Upper Basin in Grand Junction on November 4, 2016, one in the Lower Basin in Tucson on March 29, 2017, and one in Washington, DC on May 16, 2017 to disseminate the findings. Over 100 people attended these workshops.

  19. 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); 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.

  20. Sustainability of current GM crop cultivation : Review of people, planet, profit effects of agricultural production of GM crops, based on the cases of soybean, maize, and cotton

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Franke, A.C.; Breukers, M.L.H.; Broer, W.; Bunte, F.H.J.; Dolstra, O.; Engelbronner-Kolff, d' F.M.; Lotz, L.A.P.; Montfort, J.; Nikoloyuk, J.; Rutten, M.M.; Smulders, M.J.M.; Wiel, van de C.C.M.; Zijl, M.

    2011-01-01

    This report adresses the question whether the cultivation of genetically modified (GM) crops abroad for import in the Netherlands, as compared to the cultivation of their conventional (non-GM) counterparts, is in line with Dutch policy and societal aims striving after more sustainable forms of

  1. 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.

  2. Barriers to implementing climate resilient agricultural strategies: The case of crop diversification in the U.S. Corn Belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabrielle E. Roesch-McNally; J.G. Arbuckle; John C. Tyndall

    2018-01-01

    Cropping system diversity can help build greater agroecosystem resilience by suppressing insect, weed, and disease pressures while also mitigating effects of extreme and more variable weather. Despite the potential benefits of cropping systems diversity, few farmers in the US Corn Belt use diverse rotations. This study examines factors that may influence farmers’...

  3. Crop and Soil Science. A Curriculum Guide for Idaho Vocational Agriculture Instructors. Volume 1 and Volume 2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledington, Richard L.

    The 24 units that comprise this crop and soil science curriculum guide are not geared to a particular age level and must be adapted to the students for whom they are used. Units 1 through 6 are general units covering topics common to soil science. Units 7 through 24 are units covering topics common to crop production. Each unit includes objectives…

  4. 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.

  5. Costs of rearing children in agricultural economies: an alternative estimation approach and findings from rural Bangladesh.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, M M; Magnani, R J; Mock, N B; Saadat, Y S

    1993-03-01

    There are changes in child costs during demographic transition. This study examines household time allocation from 66 agricultural households in 3 villages in Tangail District in rural north central Bangladesh in 1984-85 (371 days). Component and total child-rearing costs are estimated in alternative ways. Conventional "opportunity wage" measures are considered overestimated. The methodological shortcomings of direct cost accounting procedures and consumer demand methods in computing time cost and monetary cost of child rearing are pointed out. In this study's alternative computation, age standardized equivalent costs are generated. Child food consumption costs were generated from a large national survey conducted in 1983. Nonfood expenditures were estimated by food to nonfood expenditure ratios taken from the aforementioned survey. For estimating breast-feeding costs, an estimate was produced based on the assumption that costs for infant food consumption were a fixed proportion of food costs for older children. Land ownership groups were set up to reflect socioeconomic status: 1) landless households, 2) marginal farm households with 1 acre or .4 hectares of land, 3) middle income households with 1-2 acres of land, 4) upper middle income households with 2-4 acres of land, and 5) upper income or rich households with over 4 acres of land. The nonmarket wage rate for hired household help was used to determine the value of cooking, fetching water, and household cleaning and repairing. The results confirm the low costs of child rearing in high fertility societies. Productive nonmarket activities are effective in subsidizing the costs of children. The addition of a child into households already with children has a low impact on time costs of children; "this economies of scale effect is estimated ... at 20%." The highest relative costs were found in the lowest income households, and the lowest costs were in the highest income households. 5% of total household income is

  6. Effect of Gamma Irradiation on Bio production of Alcohols as Alternative Fuels From Some Agricultural Wastes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abd ElTawab, E.E.

    2014-01-01

    With the inevitable depletion of the world’s energy supply, there has been an increasing worldwide interest in alternative sources of energy. It’s now understood that it is important to use biomass energy as a means of providing modern energy to the billions who lack it. Bi oethanol continues to be offered as a viable solution for complex problems ranging from global warming and national energy security to local economic development. Fuel bi oethanol burns cleaner than gasoline, is derived from renewable agricultural products. The aim of the current study is the isolation of local yeast isolate has the ability to produce bi oethanol from molasses. The local isolate of yeast E10 from sugar cane waste (bagasse) which identified as(Candida tropicalis strain JH8 26S ribosomal RNA gen) was employed for ethanol production in submerged fermentation conditions compared with standard Saccharomyces cerevisiae EMCC number 71"T. The production of bi oethanol is influenced to a great extent by a variety of physical factors (incubation time, temperature, ph, agitation speed) also; bi oethanol production by yeast depends upon the nature and concentrations of carbon and nitrogen sources. The optimization of these factors is prerequisite for the development of commercial process. The use of seed culture inocula (24 h) age at rate of (8% v/v) also enhances the production. The results showed that, the maximum ethanol production in local strain Candida tropicalis was 30.28 g/l achieved at incubation temperature 30 °C, with ph 5, incubation time 48 hr, agitation rate 150 rpm. Also, the best ethanol production in standard Saccharomyces cerevisiae was 42.57 g/l at the same conditions. . Low doses of gamma radiation (0.2 kGy) stimulate bi oethanol production and microbial growth by the local Candida isolate. Batch fermentation was also investigated

  7. 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

  8. 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 (pconstitute a field rainwater and soil conservation improvement strategy that enhances crop and economic productivity and reduces siltation of reservoirs, especially under changing climate. The reduction in draught power requirement would enable a reduction in oxen density and crop residue demand for livestock feed, which would encourage smallholder

  9. 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. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd

  10. 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

  11. Agricultural methanization and use of energetic crops in co-digestion. Benefits/drawbacks and optimization. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2009-12-01

    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

  12. 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.

  13. Nitrous oxide and methane emissions from optimized and alternative cereal cropping systems on the North China Plain: A two-year field study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao, Bing; Ju, Xiaotang; Su, Fang; Meng, Qingfeng; Oenema, Oene; Christie, Peter; Chen, Xinping; Zhang, Fusuo

    2014-01-01

    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 2 O) and methane (CH 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 2 O emissions plus CH 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 4 by the soil was little affected by cropping system. Average N 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 2 O emissions while maintaining high grain yields and sustainable use of groundwater. - Highlights: • Yields, resource use efficiency and N 2 O + CH 4 emission differ among cropping systems. • An

  14. 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

  15. Polyphagotarsonemus latus (Banks as pest in agricultural crop of economic interest of the municipalities Abreu and Aguada de Pasajeros

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leydi Díaz García

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The investigation was developed during six winter and spring seasons in the municipalities of Abreus and Aguada de Pasajeros with the aims to know the preference of Polyphagotarsonemus latus (Banks and levels of incidence for crops. The data filed were obtained in the Protection Station of Yaguaramas about four the crops in the register of existent areas, stationary fields, journeys of itinerary, reports of seasons and historical territorial registration. It was analyzed the levels of incidence by varieties, sowing times or plantation according to meteorological variables. It was picked up affected crops and frequency of incidence of the mite, percentage of area with presence and level of incidence per crops and season. It is reported the white mite as important pest, with high percent of affected areas in cold and spring season for potato, common bean, cowpea, pepper at fields and greenhouse. This surpassed the Control Economic Threshold in all cultivations sowed or planted; not being this way in common bean that only it happened in two seasons. In February-March, April-May the higher incidences occurred in the fields, without a marked preference for pepper greenhouse. The highest incidences happened to minimum temperature of 18 0C and 94 % of relative humidity. It don not put on in evidence the preference of the mite for some variety of the crops in study; throwing differences among early, intermediate and late season for pepper greenhouse in spring and for common bean and cowpea.

  16. 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…

  17. Evaluation of the dose to man in relation to the behavior of tritium from irrigation water in agricultural crops

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kirchmann, R.; Bruwaene, R. van; Koch, G.; Grauby, A.; Delmas, J.; Athalye, V.

    1977-01-01

    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 [fr

  18. 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.

  19. Marginal cost curves for water footprint reduction in irrigated agriculture: guiding a cost-effective reduction of crop water consumption to a permit or benchmark level

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. D. Chukalla

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Reducing the water footprint (WF of the process of growing irrigated crops is an indispensable element in water management, particularly in water-scarce areas. To achieve this, information on marginal cost curves (MCCs that rank management packages according to their cost-effectiveness to reduce the WF need to support the decision making. MCCs enable the estimation of the cost associated with a certain WF reduction target, e.g. towards a given WF permit (expressed in m3  ha−1 per season or to a certain WF benchmark (expressed in m3  t−1 of crop. This paper aims to develop MCCs for WF reduction for a range of selected cases. AquaCrop, a soil-water-balance and crop-growth model, is used to estimate the effect of different management packages on evapotranspiration and crop yield and thus the WF of crop production. A management package is defined as a specific combination of management practices: irrigation technique (furrow, sprinkler, drip or subsurface drip; irrigation strategy (full or deficit irrigation; and mulching practice (no, organic or synthetic mulching. The annual average cost for each management package is estimated as the annualized capital cost plus the annual costs of maintenance and operations (i.e. costs of water, energy and labour. Different cases are considered, including three crops (maize, tomato and potato; four types of environment (humid in UK, sub-humid in Italy, semi-arid in Spain and arid in Israel; three hydrologic years (wet, normal and dry years and three soil types (loam, silty clay loam and sandy loam. For each crop, alternative WF reduction pathways were developed, after which the most cost-effective pathway was selected to develop the MCC for WF reduction. When aiming at WF reduction one can best improve the irrigation strategy first, next the mulching practice and finally the irrigation technique. Moving from a full to deficit irrigation strategy is found to be a no-regret measure: it reduces the WF

  20. Marginal cost curves for water footprint reduction in irrigated agriculture: guiding a cost-effective reduction of crop water consumption to a permit or benchmark level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chukalla, Abebe D.; Krol, Maarten S.; Hoekstra, Arjen Y.

    2017-07-01

    Reducing the water footprint (WF) of the process of growing irrigated crops is an indispensable element in water management, particularly in water-scarce areas. To achieve this, information on marginal cost curves (MCCs) that rank management packages according to their cost-effectiveness to reduce the WF need to support the decision making. MCCs enable the estimation of the cost associated with a certain WF reduction target, e.g. towards a given WF permit (expressed in m3  ha-1 per season) or to a certain WF benchmark (expressed in m3  t-1 of crop). This paper aims to develop MCCs for WF reduction for a range of selected cases. AquaCrop, a soil-water-balance and crop-growth model, is used to estimate the effect of different management packages on evapotranspiration and crop yield and thus the WF of crop production. A management package is defined as a specific combination of management practices: irrigation technique (furrow, sprinkler, drip or subsurface drip); irrigation strategy (full or deficit irrigation); and mulching practice (no, organic or synthetic mulching). The annual average cost for each management package is estimated as the annualized capital cost plus the annual costs of maintenance and operations (i.e. costs of water, energy and labour). Different cases are considered, including three crops (maize, tomato and potato); four types of environment (humid in UK, sub-humid in Italy, semi-arid in Spain and arid in Israel); three hydrologic years (wet, normal and dry years) and three soil types (loam, silty clay loam and sandy loam). For each crop, alternative WF reduction pathways were developed, after which the most cost-effective pathway was selected to develop the MCC for WF reduction. When aiming at WF reduction one can best improve the irrigation strategy first, next the mulching practice and finally the irrigation technique. Moving from a full to deficit irrigation strategy is found to be a no-regret measure: it reduces the WF by reducing water

  1. 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.

  2. Beneficial Use of Produced Water from Oil and Gas Operations for Agriculture: Effects on Crop Health and Crop Uptake of Contaminants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sedlacko, E.; Blaine, A. C.; Haynes, K. M.; Higgins, C. P.

    2016-12-01

    The balance between water conservation and energy generation is difficult to maintain. Oil and gas (O&G) companies look to dispose of produced water in safe, economical ways, while farmers desperate for water seek plentiful sources to maintain their fields. The solution seems simple—purify the water from O&G operations and deliver it to the farmers for irrigation to ensure a reliable source of food. Unfortunately, little research has been conducted to date that could provide purification guidelines, risk warnings, or standard methods for how to implement this solution. In addition, multiple barriers to implementation including regulatory, economic, liability, and social license considerations, must be addressed. This presentation contains data regarding the uptake of compounds two crops, Triticum aestivum (spring wheat) and Helianthus annus (sunflower), grown in a controlled greenhouse environment and irrigated with different dilutions of raw and treated produced water from O&G operations. Differences in plant height, plant color, leaf area, and plant mass were examined, and additional laboratory analyses were conducted on the plants to detect uptake of inorganic and organic substances. Plant stress was also assessed both qualitatively and through plant hormone analysis. In addition, this project provided the opportunity for K-12 teachers to become involved in university research through a new National Science Foundation Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program at Colorado School of Mines. The subsequent impacts of this food-energy-water nexus research on local communities and local STEM curricula via the RET program will also be highlighted.

  3. The multispectral reflectance of shortwave radiation by agricultural crops in relation with their morphological and optical properties

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bunnik, N.J.J.

    1978-01-01

    Relations between morphological properties of uniform canopies. optical properties of the leaves and reflection of shortwave radiation, in the visible light region and the near infrared, by crops are the subject of this thesis.

    The aim of the study was a further investigation of

  4. Biofuel Crops Expansion: Evaluating the Impact on the Agricultural Water Scarcity Costs and Hydropower Production with Hydro Economic Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marques, G.

    2015-12-01

    Biofuels such as ethanol from sugar cane remain an important element to help mitigate the impacts of fossil fuels on the atmosphere. However, meeting fuel demands with biofuels requires technological advancement for water productivity and scale of production. This may translate into increased water demands for biofuel crops and potential for conflicts with incumbent crops and other water uses including domestic, hydropower generation and environmental. It is therefore important to evaluate the effects of increased biofuel production on the verge of water scarcity costs and hydropower production. The present research applies a hydro-economic optimization model to compare different scenarios of irrigated biofuel and hydropower production, and estimates the potential tradeoffs. A case study from the Araguari watershed in Brazil is provided. These results should be useful to (i) identify improved water allocation among competing economic demands, (ii) support water management and operations decisions in watersheds where biofuels are expected to increase, and (iii) identify the impact of bio fuel production in the water availability and economic value. Under optimized conditions, adoption of sugar cane for biofuel production heavily relies on the opportunity costs of other crops and hydropower generation. Areas with a lower value crop groups seem more suitable to adopt sugar cane for biofuel when the price of ethanol is sufficiently high and the opportunity costs of hydropower productions are not conflicting. The approach also highlights the potential for insights in water management from studying regional versus larger scales bundled systems involving water use, food production and power generation.

  5. New alternatives on the control of plagues in the handling of the residuals in agricultural products

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mendez Buenaventura, L.

    1995-01-01

    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

  6. Neutral lipid fatty acid analysis is a sensitive marker for quantitative estimation of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in agricultural soil with crops of different mycotrophy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauritz Vestberg

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The impact of host mycotrophy on arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF markers was studied in a temperate agricultural soil cropped with mycorrhizal barley, flax, reed canary-grass, timothy, caraway and quinoa and non-mycorrhizal buckwheat, dyer's woad, nettle and false flax. The percentage of AMF root colonization, the numbers of infective propagules by the Most Probable Number (MPN method, and the amounts of signature Phospholipid Fatty Acid (PLFA 16:1ω5 and Neutral Lipid Fatty Acid (NLFA 16:1ω5 were measured as AMF markers.  Crop had a significant impact on MPN levels of AMF, on NLFA 16:1ω5 levels in bulk and rhizosphere soil and on PLFA 16:1ω5 levels in rhizosphere soil. Reed canary-grass induced the highest levels of AMF markers. Mycorrhizal markers were at low levels in all non-mycorrhizal crops. NLFA 16:1ω5 and the ratio of NLFA to PLFA 16:1ω5 from bulk soil are adequate methods as indicators of AMF biomass in soil.

  7. [Applicability of agricultural production systems simulator (APSIM) in simulating the production and water use of wheat-maize continuous cropping system in North China Plain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lin; Zheng, You-fei; Yu, Qiang; Wang, En-li

    2007-11-01

    The Agricultural Production Systems Simulator (APSIM) was applied to simulate the 1999-2001 field experimental data and the 2002-2003 water use data at the Yucheng Experiment Station under Chinese Ecosystem Research Network, aimed to verify the applicability of the model to the wheat-summer maize continuous cropping system in North China Plain. The results showed that the average errors of the simulations of leaf area index (LAI), biomass, and soil moisture content in 1999-2000 and 2000-2001 field experiments were 27.61%, 24.59% and 7.68%, and 32.65%, 35.95% and 10.26%, respectively, and those of LAI and biomass on the soils with high and low moisture content in 2002-2003 were 26.65% and 14.52%, and 23.91% and 27.93%, respectively. The simulations of LAI and biomass accorded well with the measured values, with the coefficients of determination being > 0.85 in 1999-2000 and 2002-2003, and 0.78 in 2000-2001, indicating that APSIM had a good applicability in modeling the crop biomass and soil moisture content in the continuous cropping system, but the simulation error of LAI was a little larger.

  8. Classification of agricultural crops of the Taita Hills, Kenya using airborne AisaEAGLE imaging spectroscopy data

    OpenAIRE

    Piiroinen, Rami

    2014-01-01

    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. Although food production is crucial for the survivability of the people the uncontrolled expansion of agricultural land at the expanse of natural habitats may in the longer term decrease food production due to disturbances in water balance, increased land erosion and eradication of n...

  9. Greenhouse gas emissions from alternative futures of deforestation and agricultural management in the southern Amazon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galford, Gillian L; Melillo, Jerry M; Kicklighter, David W; Cronin, Timothy W; Cerri, Carlos E P; Mustard, John F; Cerri, Carlos C

    2010-11-16

    The Brazilian Amazon is one of the most rapidly developing agricultural areas in the world and represents a potentially large future source of greenhouse gases from land clearing and subsequent agricultural management. In an integrated approach, we estimate the greenhouse gas dynamics of natural ecosystems and agricultural ecosystems after clearing in the context of a future climate. We examine scenarios of deforestation and postclearing land use to estimate the future (2006-2050) impacts on carbon dioxide (CO(2)), methane (CH(4)), and nitrous oxide (N(2)O) emissions from the agricultural frontier state of Mato Grosso, using a process-based biogeochemistry model, the Terrestrial Ecosystems Model (TEM). We estimate a net emission of greenhouse gases from Mato Grosso, ranging from 2.8 to 15.9 Pg CO(2)-equivalents (CO(2)-e) from 2006 to 2050. Deforestation is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions over this period, but land uses following clearing account for a substantial portion (24-49%) of the net greenhouse gas budget. Due to land-cover and land-use change, there is a small foregone carbon sequestration of 0.2-0.4 Pg CO(2)-e by natural forests and cerrado between 2006 and 2050. Both deforestation and future land-use management play important roles in the net greenhouse gas emissions of this frontier, suggesting that both should be considered in emissions policies. We find that avoided deforestation remains the best strategy for minimizing future greenhouse gas emissions from Mato Grosso.

  10. Wood strands as an alternative to agricultural straw for erosion control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randy B. Foltz; James H. Dooley

    2004-01-01

    Agricultural straw is used in forested areas of the United States for erosion control on burned areas, harvest landings, decommissioned road prisms, road cuts and fills, and other areas of disturbed soil. However, an increased agronomic and ecological value for straw; an increased utilization for energy production, fiber panels, and other higher value uses; a...

  11. 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....

  12. Climate Change Effects on Agricultural Production of Iran: II. Predicting Productivity of Field Crops and Adaptation Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A Koocheki

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Recent evidences confirm that during the next few decades, many agroclimatic indices of Iran would be affected by global climate change. Koocheki et al. using two General Circulation Models showed that the mean annual temperature of the country will increase between 3.5-4.5°C while mean precipitation will reduce by 7-15% to 2050. It is well established that crop growth and development would drastically affect by the future global warming and its consequences because yield determining processes such as photosynthesis and crop phenology are directly related to temperature. On the other hands, the combined effects of CO2 enrichment and temperature rise on crop growth are complicated and should be studied using crop simulation models. Furthermore, adapting to climatic variability will have a substantially greater effect in reducing impacts than willing mitigation. However, such impacts on crop productivity at national scale and adaptive measures for future conditions are rarely studied in Iran. In this research crop development and yield of wheat, corn, chickpea and sugar beet were simulated for the target year of 2050 and the results are compared with the current yield as the baseline. Materials and Methods Future climatic variables were predicted using A1f (business as usual scenario by GFDL general circulation model and the results were used as weather inputs in the SUCROS model which was previously validated against measured data of the four crops. To account for the effect of CO2 enrichment on crop growth the photosynthesis routine of the model was adopted for increased CO2 concentration using a scaling factor. Changes in developmental stages of each crop were estimated for the future conditions and the relation between duration of these stages and yield was determined. Predicted crop yields for the year 2050 were compared with the current potential yields considering some adaptation strategies. Results and Discussion Results

  13. Biogenic Volatile Organic Compound (BVOC) emissions from agricultural crop species: is guttation a possible source for methanol emissions following light/dark transition ?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mozaffar, Ahsan; Amelynck, Crist; Bachy, Aurélie; Digrado, Anthony; Delaplace, Pierre; du Jardin, Patrick; Fauconnier, Marie-Laure; Schoon, Niels; Aubinet, Marc; Heinesch, Bernard

    2015-04-01

    In the framework of the CROSTVOC (CROp STress VOC) project, the exchange of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) between two important agricultural crop species, maize and winter wheat, and the atmosphere has recently been measured during an entire growing season by using the eddy covariance technique. Because of the co-variation of BVOC emission drivers in field conditions, laboratory studies were initiated in an environmental chamber in order to disentangle the responses of the emissions to variations of the individual environmental parameters (such as PPFD and temperature) and to diverse abiotic stress factors. Young plants were enclosed in transparent all-Teflon dynamic enclosures (cuvettes) through which BVOC-free and RH-controlled air was sent. BVOC enriched air was subsequently sampled from the plant cuvettes and an empty cuvette (background) and analyzed for BVOCs in a high sensitivity Proton Transfer Reaction Mass Spectrometer (hs-PTR-MS) and for CO2 in a LI-7000 non-dispersive IR gas analyzer. Emissions were monitored at constant temperature (25 °C) and at a stepwise varying PPFD pattern (0-650 µmol m-2 s-1). For maize plants, sudden light/dark transitions at the end of the photoperiod were accompanied by prompt and considerable increases in methanol (m/z 33) and water vapor (m/z 39) emissions. Moreover, guttation droplets appeared on the sides and the tips of the leaves within a few minutes after light/dark transition. Therefore the assumption has been raised that methanol is also coming out with guttation fluid from the leaves. Consequently, guttation fluid was collected from young maize and wheat plants, injected in an empty enclosure and sampled by PTR-MS. Methanol and a large number of other compounds were observed from guttation fluid. Recent studies have shown that guttation from agricultural crops frequently occurs in field conditions. Further research is required to find out the source strength of methanol emissions by this guttation

  14. Farmer’s perception of coconut mite damage and crop diversification alternatives in the coastal belt of Tanzania

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oleke, J.M.; Isinika, A.; Manyong, V.; Hanna, R.; Sabelis, M.

    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

  15. Emissions of terpenoids, benzenoids, and other biogenic gas-phase organic compounds from agricultural crops and their potential implications for air quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentner, D. R.; Ormeño, E.; Fares, S.; Ford, T. B.; Weber, R.; Park, J.-H.; Brioude, J.; Angevine, W. M.; Karlik, J. F.; Goldstein, A. H.

    2014-06-01

    Agriculture comprises a substantial, and increasing, fraction of land use in many regions of the world. Emissions from agricultural vegetation and other biogenic and anthropogenic sources react in the atmosphere to produce ozone and secondary organic aerosol, which comprises a substantial fraction of particulate matter (PM2.5). Using data from three measurement campaigns, we examine the magnitude and composition of reactive gas-phase organic carbon emissions from agricultural crops and their potential to impact regional air quality relative to anthropogenic emissions from motor vehicles in California's San Joaquin Valley, which is out of compliance with state and federal standards for tropospheric ozone PM2.5. Emission rates for a suite of terpenoid compounds were measured in a greenhouse for 25 representative crops from California in 2008. Ambient measurements of terpenoids and other biogenic compounds in the volatile and intermediate-volatility organic compound ranges were made in the urban area of Bakersfield and over an orange orchard in a rural area of the San Joaquin Valley during two 2010 seasons: summer and spring flowering. We combined measurements from the orchard site with ozone modeling methods to assess the net effect of the orange trees on regional ozone. When accounting for both emissions of reactive precursors and the deposition of ozone to the orchard, the orange trees are a net source of ozone in the springtime during flowering, and relatively neutral for most of the summer until the fall, when it becomes a sink. Flowering was a major emission event and caused a large increase in emissions including a suite of compounds that had not been measured in the atmosphere before. Such biogenic emission events need to be better parameterized in models as they have significant potential to impact regional air quality since emissions increase by several factors to over an order of magnitude. In regions like the San Joaquin Valley, the mass of biogenic

  16. Light- and water-use efficiency model synergy: a revised look at crop yield estimation for agricultural decision-making

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, M.; Tu, K. P.

    2015-12-01

    Large-area crop yield models (LACMs) are commonly employed to address climate-driven changes in crop yield and inform policy makers concerned with climate change adaptation. Production efficiency models (PEMs), a class of LACMs that rely on the conservative response of carbon assimilation to incoming solar radiation absorbed by a crop contingent on environmental conditions, have increasingly been used over large areas with remote sensing spectral information to improve the spatial resolution of crop yield estimates and address important data gaps. Here, we present a new PEM that combines model principles from the remote sensing-based crop yield and evapotranspiration (ET) model literature. One of the major limitations of PEMs is that they are evaluated using data restricted in both space and time. To overcome this obstacle, we first validated the model using 2009-2014 eddy covariance flux tower Gross Primary Production data in a rice field in the Central Valley of California- a critical agro-ecosystem of the United States. This evaluation yielded a Willmot's D and mean absolute error of 0.81 and 5.24 g CO2/d, respectively, using CO2, leaf area, temperature, and moisture constraints from the MOD16 ET model, Priestley-Taylor ET model, and the Global Production Efficiency Model (GLOPEM). A Monte Carlo simulation revealed that the model was most sensitive to the Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI) input, followed by Photosynthetically Active Radiation, vapor pressure deficit, and air temperature. The model will now be evaluated using 30 x 30m (Landsat resolution) biomass transects developed in 2011 and 2012 from spectroradiometric and other non-destructive in situ metrics for several cotton, maize, and rice fields across the Central Valley. Finally, the model will be driven by Daymet and MODIS data over the entire State of California and compared with county-level crop yield statistics. It is anticipated that the new model will facilitate agro-climatic decision-making in

  17. Technical, economic and policy considerations on marker-assisted selection in crops: lessons from the experience at an international agricultural research centre

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    William, H.M.; Warburton, M.; Morris, M.; Hoisington, D.A.

    2007-01-01

    Molecular markers and related technologies have been used extensively in genetic characterization and identification of loci controlling traits of economic importance in many crop species. However, the application of such tools for crop improvement has not been extensive, at least in the public sector. Although there are clear advantages in using molecular markers as tools for indirect selection of traits of importance, available examples indicate that their use is restricted to traits with monogenic inheritance or when the inheritance is conditioned by a few genes with large effects. Another important limitation of large-scale marker applications is the cost involved in marker assays, which may be beyond the capacities of many public plant breeding enterprises. For an effective marker-assisted selection (MAS) activity to facilitate ongoing crop improvement programmes, especially in the context of the developing countries, laboratories with adequate capacity and adequately trained scientific personnel as well as operational resources are required. Although recent technological advances such as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and associated assay protocols are likely to reduce assay costs significantly, for many of these operations, assay platforms with significant capital investments including computational capacity are required. Coupled with these limitations, private sector domination of biotechnology research with proprietary rights to important products and processes with immediate benefits to developing countries may further constrain the benefits these technologies may offer to resource-poor farmers. Policy-makers in different national programmes and international development and research agencies have a responsibility to sustain and augment the capacity of national public agricultural research organizations to ensure that biotechnology tools and processes are infused appropriately into national research efforts. They must also ensure that any

  18. A Preliminary Study on Termite Mound Soil as Agricultural Soil for Crop Production in South West, Nigeria

    OpenAIRE

    Omofunmi, O. E.; Kolo, J. G.; Alli, A. A.; Ojo, A. S.

    2017-01-01

    It is a popular belief of the people in the Southern region of Nigeria that a land infested with termite usually brings prosperity to the land owner regardless of the type of its usage.  Therefore, the present study assessed termite mounds soil properties which are important to crop production. Two soil samples were collected and their physical and chemical properties determined in accordance with American Public Health Association (APHA, 2005). Data were analyzed using descriptive stati...

  19. Sustainable introduction of GM crops into european agriculture: a summary report of the FP6 SIGMEA research project*

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Messéan Antoine

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available In 2003, the European Commission established the principle of coexistence which refers to “the ability of farmers to make a practical choice between conventional, organic and GM-crop production, in compliance with the legal obligations for labelling and/or purity standards” and laid down guidelines defining the context of this coexistence1. In order to determine what is needed for the sustainable introduction of GM crops in Europe, the cross-disciplinary SIGMEA Research Project was set up to create a science-based framework to inform decision-makers. SIGMEA has (i collated and analysed European data on gene flow and the environmental impacts of the major crop species which are likely to be transgenic in the future (maize, rapeseed, sugar beet, rice, and wheat, (ii designed predictive models of gene flow at the landscape level, (iii analysed the technical feasibility and economic impacts of coexistence in the principal farming regions of Europe, (iv developed novel GMO detection methods, (v addressed legal issues related to coexistence, and (vi proposed public and farm scale decisionmaking tools, as well as guidelines regarding management and governance. This publishable version of the final activity report of the FP6 SIGMEA research project, covers the fourteen major issues under investigation.

  20. Simulation of corn (Zea mays L. production in different agricultural zones of Colombia using the AquaCrop model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Javier García Á.

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Due to climate changes and increasing food needs, it is important to develop simple models of wide application to determine the irrigation needs. The aim of this study was to calibrate and validate the AquaCrop model in maize crop of the variety ICA V156 in different locations of Colombia, such as Chinchina (Caldas, Palmira (Valle del Cauca and Cerete (Cordoba, situated at altitudes of 20, 900, and 1,340 m a.s.l., respectively. As part of the model calibration, the biomass, harvest index, and grain yield were recorded. After the calibration, the Pearson correlation coefficient and the respective analysis of variance were calculated for each variable. The biomass, harvest index and grain yield were different in each study site, with the highest grain obtained in Cerete, followed by Chinchina and, finally, Palmira. The modeling in each of the locations showed similarity between the field data and the simulated data in each of the sites. In the calibration, Palmira had the highest grain yield (4.9 t ha-1, followed by Chinchina (4.83 t ha-1 and Cerete (4.15 t ha-1. The validation in each location allowed for the determination of the grain yield, harvest index, biomass and the amount of water needed for crop growth, which averaged 3.45 kg of biomass per m³ of evapotranspired water and was reflected in an average yield of 1.26 kg of grain per m³ of evapotranspired water.

  1. Sustainability assessment of crop protection systems: SustainOS methodology and its application for apple orchards

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mouron, P.; Heijne, B.; Naef, A.; Strassemever, J.; Haver, F.; Avilla, J.

    2012-01-01

    Crop protection in general and apple crop protection in particular often rely on pesticides, although several alternative pest management measures are available. In this context European agricultural policy requires the implementation of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) by 2014. Within IPM, more

  2. The potential of vegetable oil as an alternate source of liquid fuel for agriculture in the Pacific Northwest - IV: Final report, 1984-1986

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Auld, D.L.; Hall, M.C.; Hawley, K.N.; Korus, R.A.; Madsen, J.P.; Mahler, K.A.; Mora, P.G.; Peterson, C.L.; Roelofsen, M.; Stibal, W.T.; Whitcraft, J.C.

    1986-01-01

    This research was conducted to develop the technology necessary to produce, process, and utilize vegtable oil as a diesel fuel substitute for agricultural production in the Pacific Northwest. Additional studies were conducted to determine the economic threshold, to derive energy budgets for various crop production regions, and to insure that expeller extracted meals would make acceptable animal feeds. This research was conducted by an integrated team of scientists from the University of Idaho which initiated efforts in this field in December of 1979. Experiments were conducted by agronomists, agricultural engineers, animal nutritionists, chemical engineers, and agricultural economists. This report summarized data accumulated from October 1984 to March 1986 as part of USDA/ARS Research Agreement No. 58-7B30-2-402. Copies of this report can be obtained from the Director of the Idaho Agricultural Experiment Station, College of Agriculture, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID 83843.

  3. Agriculture Sectors

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Agriculture sectors comprise establishments primarily engaged in growing crops, raising animals, and harvesting fish and other animals. Find information on compliance, enforcement and guidance on EPA laws and regulations on the NAICS 111 & 112 sectors.

  4. Relation of carbohydrate reserves with the forthcoming crop, flower formation and photosynthetic rate, in the alternate bearing Salustiana sweet orange (Citrus sinensis L.)

    OpenAIRE

    Monerri Huguet, Mª Consuelo; Fortunato De Almeida, Ambrosio; Molina Romero, Rosa Victoria; González Nebauer, Sergio; García Luís, Mª Desamparados; Guardiola Barcena, José Luís

    2011-01-01

    [EN] The aim of this work was to assess the relation between carbohydrate levels and flower and fruit production, as well as the role of carbohydrates on CO(2) fixation activity, by analysis of leaves, twigs and roots from the alternate bearing 'Salustiana' cultivar of sweet orange (Citrus sinensis [L.] Osbeck). A heavy crop load (on year) did not affect photosynthesis activity when compared to non-fruiting trees (off year). Fruiting trees accumulated most of the fixed carbon in mature fruits...

  5. Caesium-137 soil-to-plant transfer for representative agricultural crops of monocotyledonous and dicotyledonous plants in post-Chernobyl steppe landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paramonova, Tatiana; Komissarova, Olga; Turykin, Leonid; Kuzmenkova, Natalia; Belyaev, Vladimir

    2016-04-01

    The accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in 1986 had a large-scale action on more than 2.3 million hectares agricultural lands in Russia. The area of radioactively contaminated chernozems of semi-arid steppe zone with initial levels of Cs-137 185-555 kBq/m2 in Tula region received the name "Plavsky radioactive hotspot". Nowadays, after the first half-life period of Cs-137 arable chernozems of the region are still polluted with 3-6-fold excess above the radioactive safety standard (126-228 kBq/m2). Therefore, qualitative and quantitative characteristics of Cs-137 soil-to-plant transfer are currently a central problem for land use on the territory. The purpose of the present study was revealing the biological features of Cs-137 root uptake from contaminated arable chernozems by different agricultural crops. The components of a grass mixture growing at the central part of Plavsky radioactive hotspot with typical dicotyledonous and monocotyledonous plants - galega (Galega orientalis, Fabaceae family) and bromegrass (Bromus inermis, Gramineae family) respectively - were selected for the investigation, that was conducted during the period of harvesting in 2015. An important point was that the other factors influenced on Cs-137 soil-to-plant transfer - the level of soil pollution, soil properties, climatic conditions, vegetative phase, etc. - were equal. So, biological features of Cs-137 root uptake could be estimated the most credible manner. As a whole, general discrimination of Cs-137 root uptake was clearly shown for both agricultural crops. Whereas Cs-137 activity in rhizosphere 30-cm layer of arable chernozem was 371±74 Bq/kg (140±32 kBq/m2), Cs-137 activities in plant biomass were one-two orders of magnitude less, and transfer factor (TF) values (the ratio of the Cs-137 activities in vegetation and in soil) not exceeded 0.11. At the same time bioavailability of Cs-137 for bromegrass was significantly higher than for galega: TFs in total biomass of the

  6. Dietary phytonutrients as alternatives-to-antibiotics in agricultural animals: Mode of action in modulating cross-talks amonh immunity, disease resistance and gut microbiota

    Science.gov (United States)

    New antibiotic regulatory policies affecting agricultural animal production now challenge animal scientists to think outside of the box to develop alternative strategies for sustainable animal agriculture. For those animal infectious diseases for which effective vaccines are lacking, there is a cri...

  7. Bringing diversity back to agriculture: Smaller fields and non-crop elements enhance biodiversity in intensively managed arable farmlands

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šálek, Martin; Hula, V.; Kipson, M.; Daňková, R.; Niedobová, J.; Gamero, A.

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 90, July (2018), s. 65-73 ISSN 1470-160X Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Common Agricultural Policy * Conservation measures * Field size * Habitat heterogeneity * Species richness * Abundance * Biodiversity indicators Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 3.898, year: 2016

  8. Irrigated agriculture with limited water supply:Tools for understanding and managing irrigation and crop water use efficiencies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Water availability for irrigated agriculture is declining in both China and the United States due to increased use for power generation, municipalities, industries and environmental protection. Persistent droughts have exacerbated the situation, leading to increases in irrigated area as farmers atte...

  9. Economic and environmental performance of alternative policy measures to reduce nutrient surpluses in Finnish agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. LEHTONEN

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper provides an economic sector level analysis of the effectiveness of different policy measures in decreasing nitrogen (N and phosphorus (P surpluses from agriculture in order to reduce nutrient runoff from agricultural fields to watercourses and to improve water quality of surface waters. Assuming no changes in the EU level policies after CAP reform 2003 we focus on national level policy measures such as full or partial de-coupling of national support from production, payments for reduced nutrient surpluses of N and P, and N fertiliser tax. None of the analysed policy measures is superior one with respect to environmental performance, since full decoupling of national support would be the most effective in reducing P surpluses while payment for reduced nutrient surplus performed best with respect to N surpluses. Economic performance (farmers’ compliance cost per %-reduction of N or P surplus of full and partial de-coupling of national support is clearly better than that of specialised agri-environmental policy instruments, because both decoupling scenarios result in the increase of farmers’ income in comparison to base scenario, and thus compliance costs are in fact negative in these two cases. Our analysis confirms the fact that the overall policy package matters a lot for the effectiveness of agrienvironmental policy measures. Environmental performance of agri-environmental policy measures may be significantly reduced, if they are implemented jointly with production coupled income support policies. Thus, in order to increase the effectiveness of agri-environmental policy measures agricultural income support policies should be decoupled from production and this alone would bring substantial reduction in nutrient surpluses.;

  10. Effects of consumer-producer interactions in alternative food networks on consumers’ learning about food and agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Opitz Ina

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available In the recent literature, Alternative Food Networks (AFN are discussed as a promising approach, at the urban-rural interface, to meeting the challenges of the current agri-food system. Consumer-producer collaboration is seen as a characteristic feature in this context. What is lacking, however, are general concepts for describing the topics of consumer-producer interactions (CPI. The present study aims (1 to develop an analytical framework relying on six CPI domains and (2 to apply it to investigate CPI effects on consumers’ learning about and appreciation of agriculture. We conducted 26 guided interviews with consumers and producers of the three most frequent AFN types in Germany: community-supported agriculture (CSA, food coops, and self-harvest gardens. The results show that AFN participation enhances consumers’ learning about food (seasonality, cooking/nutrition, housekeeping aspects and agricultural production (farmers’ perspectives, cultivation. Our results show that consumer’s learning is influenced by certain CPI domains, and each AFN type can be described by distinctive CPI domains. This led to the conclusion that specific AFN types open up specific learning channels and contents, with consumers learning from producers. AFNs at the urban-rural interface exploit knowledge of rurality.

  11. Modelling the impact of mulching the soil with plant remains on water regime formation, crop yield and energy costs in agricultural ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gusev, Yeugeniy M.; Dzhogan, Larisa Y.; Nasonova, Olga N.

    2018-02-01

    The model MULCH, developed by authors previously for simulating the formation of water regime in an agricultural field covered by straw mulch layer, has been used for the comparative evaluation of the efficiency of four agricultural cultivation technologies, which are usually used for wheat production in different regions of Russia and Ukraine. It simulates the dynamics of water budget components in a soil rooting zone at daily time step from the beginning of spring snowmelt to the beginning of the period with stable negative air temperatures. The model was designed for estimation of mulching efficiency in terms of increase in plant water supply and crop yield under climatic and soil conditions of the steppe and forest-steppe zones. It is used for studying the mulching effect on some characteristics of water regime and yield of winter wheat growing at specific sites located in semi-arid and arid regions of the steppe and forest-steppe zones of the eastern and southern parts of the East-European (Russian) plain. In addition, a previously developed technique for estimating the energetic efficiency of various agricultural technologies with accounting for their impact on changes in soil energy is applied for the comparative evaluation of the efficiency of four agricultural cultivation technologies, which are usually used for wheat production in different regions of the steppe and forest-steppe zones of the European Russia: (1) moldboard tillage of soil without irrigation, (2) moldboard tillage of soil with irrigation, (3) subsurface cultivation, and (4) subsurface cultivation with mulching the soil with plant remains.

  12. Nitrogen turnover, crop use efficiency and soil fertility in a long-term field experiment amended with different qualities of urban and agricultural waste

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gomez Muñoz, Beatriz; Magid, Jakob; Jensen, Lars Stoumann

    2017-01-01

    manure and deep litter) have been applied annually for 11 years (at normal and accelerated rates), were used to estimate the effects of the different qualities of organic wastes on soil fertility, N turnover and crop N availability. Soil physical fertility parameters, such as water retention and total......Organic wastes contain significant amounts of organic matter and nutrients and their recycling into agriculture can potentially contribute to closing the natural ecological cycle. The aim of this study was to evaluate the improvement in overall soil fertility and soil nitrogen (N) supply capacity...... carbon, improved with the application of organic wastes. Cattle manure, sewage sludge and composted household waste in single or accelerated rates of application increased soil total N by 13–131% compared to the mineral fertiliser NPK treatment. The highest net N mineralisation capacity was observed...

  13. Midwest agriculture and ENSO: A comparison of AVHRR NDVI3g data and crop yields in the United States Corn Belt from 1982 to 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glennie, Erin; Anyamba, Assaf

    2018-06-01

    A time series of Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data were compared to National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) corn yield data in the United States Corn Belt from 1982 to 2014. The main objectives of the comparison were to assess 1) the consistency of regional Corn Belt responses to El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) teleconnection signals, and 2) the reliability of using NDVI as an indicator of crop yield. Regional NDVI values were used to model a seasonal curve and to define the growing season - May to October. Seasonal conditions in each county were represented by NDVI and land surface temperature (LST) composites, and corn yield was represented by average annual bushels produced per acre. Correlation analysis between the NDVI, LST, corn yield, and equatorial Pacific sea surface temperature anomalies revealed patterns in land surface dynamics and corn yield, as well as typical impacts of ENSO episodes. It was observed from the study that growing seasons coincident with La Niña events were consistently warmer, but El Niño events did not consistently impact NDVI, temperature, or corn yield data. Moreover, the El Niño and La Niña composite images suggest that impacts vary spatially across the Corn Belt. While corn is the dominant crop in the region, some inconsistencies between corn yield and NDVI may be attributed to soy crops and other background interference. The overall correlation between the total growing season NDVI anomaly and detrended corn yield was 0.61(p = 0.00013), though the strength of the relationship varies across the Corn Belt.

  14. User-inspired Research Quantifies How Floodplain Restoration Paired With Cover Crops Reduces Nutrient Export From an Agricultural Catchment Translating to Conservation Success in the Midwestern Cornbelt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tank, J. L.; Hanrahan, B.; Christopher, S. F.; Mahl, U. H.; Royer, T. V.

    2017-12-01

    The Midwestern US has undergone extensive land use change as forest, wetlands, and prairies have been converted to agroecosystems. Today, excess fertilizer nutrients from farm fields enter agricultural streams, which degrades both local and downstream water quality. We are quantifying the nutrient reduction benefits of two conservation practices implemented at the catchment scale. In partnership with The Nature Conservancy, in a small Indiana catchment, we have quantified how 600m of floodplain restoration (i.e., a two-stage ditch) increased nitrate-N removal via denitrification and reduced sediment export, but impacts on stream nutrient concentrations were negligible due to very high catchment loading relative to the short implementation reach. Requests from state and federal partners led to development and parameterization of a new two-stage ditch module in the SWAT model to determine the potential catchment-scale benefits when implementation lengths were extended. More recently, in partnership with state SWCD managers, we have added a landscape practice to quantify how winter cover crops reduce nutrient loss from fields, sampling year-round nutrient fluxes from multiple subsurface tile drains and longitudinally along the stream channel. Nitrate-N and dissolved P fluxes were significantly lower in tiles draining fields with cover crops compared to those without. At the urging of farmers and federal NRCS partners, we also linked tile drain nutrient reductions to changes in soil chemistry. Both soil nitrate-N and dissolved P were lower in cover cropped fields, and we found significant correlations between soil and tile drain nutrients, which may encourage future adoption of the conservation practice as soil health benefits appeal to farmers. As biogeochemists, this research has provided valuable insights on how floodplains and land cover change can alter patterns of catchment-scale nutrient export. The translation of successful soil and water quality outcomes

  15. Long term estimation of carbon dynamic and sequestration for Iranian agro-ecosystem: I- Net primary productivity and annual carbon input for common agricultural crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Nassiri Mahalati

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Evaluation of carbon input is one of the most important factors for estimating soil carbon changes and potential for carbon sequestration. To evaluate the net primary productivity (NPP and soil carbon input in agricultural eco-systems of Iran, data for yield, cultivated area, harvest index (HI and shoot /root ratio in different crops including: wheat, barley, maize, cotton, rice, alfalfa and chickpea were obtained for different provinces. Then, allocated carbon to different organs of plant were calculated based on carbon allocation coefficients and finally, the net primary productivity based on carbon (NPPc was calculated. The ratio of NPPc that was annually returned to soil was considered as carbon annual input. The results showed that the maximum amount of NPPc for wheat, barely and alfalfa were obtained in Khazari climate for rice, chickpea and cotton was achieved in warm-wet climate and for maize was gained in warm-dry climate. In all regions of Iran, chickpea had the lowest effect on NPPc and consequently on carbon sequestration. The highest amount of carbon input per unit area among studied crops and different regions were observed in Khazari region for alfalfa whereas, the lowest carbon input per unit area was relation to chickpea in cold region. The lowest gap between actual and potential of carbon sequestration was observed in alfalfa whereas wheat, rice and cotton showed the most gap by 0.4, 0.38 and 0.37, respectively.

  16. Climate change impact and potential adaptation strategies under alternate realizations of climate scenarios for three major crops in Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donatelli, Marcello; Srivastava, Amit Kumar; Duveiller, Gregory; Niemeyer, Stefan; Fumagalli, Davide

    2015-07-01

    This study presents an estimate of the effects of climate variables and CO2 on three major crops, namely wheat, rapeseed and sunflower, in EU27 Member States. We also investigated some technical adaptation options which could offset climate change impacts. The time-slices 2000, 2020 and 2030 were chosen to represent the baseline and future climate, respectively. Furthermore, two realizations within the A1B emission scenario proposed by the Special Report on Emissions Scenarios (SRES), from the ECHAM5 and HadCM3 GCM, were selected. A time series of 30 years for each GCM and time slice were used as input weather data for simulation. The time series were generated with a stochastic weather generator trained over GCM-RCM time series (downscaled simulations from the ENSEMBLES project which were statistically bias-corrected prior to the use of the weather generator). GCM-RCM simulations differed primarily for rainfall patterns across Europe, whereas the temperature increase was similar in the time horizons considered. Simulations based on the model CropSyst v. 3 were used to estimate crop responses; CropSyst was re-implemented in the modelling framework BioMA. The results presented in this paper refer to abstraction of crop growth with respect to its production system, and consider growth as limited by weather and soil water. How crop growth responds to CO2 concentrations; pests, diseases, and nutrients limitations were not accounted for in simulations. The results show primarily that different realization of the emission scenario lead to noticeably different crop performance projections in the same time slice. Simple adaptation techniques such as changing sowing dates and the use of different varieties, the latter in terms of duration of the crop cycle, may be effective in alleviating the adverse effects of climate change in most areas, although response to best adaptation (within the techniques tested) differed across crops. Although a negative impact of climate

  17. Climate change impact and potential adaptation strategies under alternate realizations of climate scenarios for three major crops in Europe

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Donatelli, Marcello; Srivastava, Amit Kumar; Duveiller, Gregory; Niemeyer, Stefan; Fumagalli, Davide

    2015-01-01

    This study presents an estimate of the effects of climate variables and CO 2 on three major crops, namely wheat, rapeseed and sunflower, in EU27 Member States. We also investigated some technical adaptation options which could offset climate change impacts. The time-slices 2000, 2020 and 2030 were chosen to represent the baseline and future climate, respectively. Furthermore, two realizations within the A1B emission scenario proposed by the Special Report on Emissions Scenarios (SRES), from the ECHAM5 and HadCM3 GCM, were selected. A time series of 30 years for each GCM and time slice were used as input weather data for simulation. The time series were generated with a stochastic weather generator trained over GCM-RCM time series (downscaled simulations from the ENSEMBLES project which were statistically bias-corrected prior to the use of the weather generator). GCM-RCM simulations differed primarily for rainfall patterns across Europe, whereas the temperature increase was similar in the time horizons considered. Simulations based on the model CropSyst v. 3 were used to estimate crop responses; CropSyst was re-implemented in the modelling framework BioMA. The results presented in this paper refer to abstraction of crop growth with respect to its production system, and consider growth as limited by weather and soil water. How crop growth responds to CO 2 concentrations; pests, diseases, and nutrients limitations were not accounted for in simulations. The results show primarily that different realization of the emission scenario lead to noticeably different crop performance projections in the same time slice. Simple adaptation techniques such as changing sowing dates and the use of different varieties, the latter in terms of duration of the crop cycle, may be effective in alleviating the adverse effects of climate change in most areas, although response to best adaptation (within the techniques tested) differed across crops. Although a negative impact of climate

  18. 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

    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 the soil N2O...... emissions increased 6.5 and 1.6 times, respectively, compared with residue placed in a layer. Wheat residue in a layer evolved 3.4-times less N2O than alfalfa in a layer, whereas when mixed the two residue types evolved similar amounts of N2O. This difference was probably due to N-limitations in localised...

  19. Safety Assessment of Food and Feed from GM Crops in Europe: Evaluating EFSA's Alternative Framework for the Rat 90-day Feeding Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Bonnie; Du, Yingzhou; Mukerji, Pushkor; Roper, Jason M; Appenzeller, Laura M

    2017-07-12

    Regulatory-compliant rodent subchronic feeding studies are compulsory regardless of a hypothesis to test, according to recent EU legislation for the safety assessment of whole food/feed produced from genetically modified (GM) crops containing a single genetic transformation event (European Union Commission Implementing Regulation No. 503/2013). The Implementing Regulation refers to guidelines set forth by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) for the design, conduct, and analysis of rodent subchronic feeding studies. The set of EFSA recommendations was rigorously applied to a 90-day feeding study in Sprague-Dawley rats. After study completion, the appropriateness and applicability of these recommendations were assessed using a battery of statistical analysis approaches including both retrospective and prospective statistical power analyses as well as variance-covariance decomposition. In the interest of animal welfare considerations, alternative experimental designs were investigated and evaluated in the context of informing the health risk assessment of food/feed from GM crops.

  20. Effect of Chemical Remediation of Crude-Oil-Polluted Agricultural Land on Soil Properties and Crop Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. E. Essien

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Chemical degreaser with detergent was used to wash crude-oil-polluted agricultural soil and restore it to 83% -93% of the unpolluted soil's status for sustainable productivity. Comparison of reclaimed soil's properties with unpolluted soil sample of the significant differences (p=0.05 between their values for soil moisture content, soil pH, evapotranspiration, root elongation and soil fertility. Root elongation at 1.1 cm/day in the reclaimed soil compared with 1.29 cm/day in unpolluted soil indicated 83% recovery. Saturated hydraulic conductivity also had 83% recovery. However, infiltration rate showed a low recovery of 30%, perhaps, due to the wetness of the reclaimed soil's surface prior to the reclamation process. The soil macro/microspores were unblocked by the degreaser enabling the root pores to overcome the osmotic problem caused by oil-molecules' blockade and conduct moisture through to the phloem and leaves to sustain evapotranspiration, leaves turgidity chemical reclamation by degreaser with detergent is highly recommended for short-duration in-situ remediation of crude-oil-polluted agricultural land.

  1. Nitrogen Fertilizer Rate and Crop Management Effects on Nitrate Leaching from an Agricultural Field in Central Pennsylvania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard H. Fox

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available Eighteen pan lysimeters were installed at a depth of 1.2 m in a Hagerstown silt loam soil in a corn field in central Pennsylvania in 1988. In 1995, wick lysimeters were also installed at 1.2 m depth in the same access pits. Treatments have included N fertilizer rates, use of manure, crop rotation (continuous corn, corn-soybean, alfalfa-corn, and tillage (chisel plow-disk, no-till. The leachate data were used to evaluate a number of nitrate leaching models. Some of the highlights of the 11 years of results include the following: 1 growing corn without organic N inputs at the economic optimum N rate (EON resulted in NO3–-N concentrations of 15 to 20 mg l-1 in leachate; 2 use of manure or previous alfalfa crop as partial source of N also resulted in 15 to 20 mg l-1 of NO3–-N in leachate below corn at EON; 3 NO3–-N concentration in leachate below alfalfa was approximately 4 mg l-1; 4 NO3–-N concentration in leachate below soybeans following corn was influenced by fertilizer N rate applied to corn; 5 the mass of NO3–-N leached below corn at the EON rate averaged 90 kg N ha-1 (approx. 40% of fertilizer N applied at EON; 6 wick lysimeters collected approximately 100% of leachate vs. 40–50% collected by pan lysimeters. Coefficients of variation of the collected leachate volumes for both lysimeter types were similar; 7 tillage did not markedly affect nitrate leaching losses; 8 tested leaching models could accurately predict leachate volumes and could be calibrated to match nitrate leaching losses in calibration years, but only one model (SOILN accurately predicted nitrate leaching losses in the majority of validation treatment years. Apparent problems with tested models: there was difficulty estimating sizes of organic N pools and their transformation rates, and the models either did not include a macropore flow component or did not handle macropore flow well.

  2. Weed Growth and Efficacy of Pre-Applied Herbicides in Alternative Rooting Substrates Used in Container-Grown Nursery Crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Container-grown nursery crops in the Southeastern United States are typically grown in a rooting substrate comprised primarily of the ground bark of pine trees. However pine bark is becoming less available and more costly due to changes in production and marketed practices within Southeastern pine f...

  3. Heavy metal content in ash of energy crops growing in sewage-contaminated natural wetlands: Potential applications in agriculture and forestry?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bonanno, Giuseppe; Cirelli, Giuseppe Luigi; Toscano, Attilio; Giudice, Rosa Lo; Pavone, Pietro

    2013-01-01

    One of the greatest current challenges is to find cost-effective and eco-friendly solutions to the ever increasing needs of modern society. Some plant species are suitable for a multitude of biotechnological applications such as bioenergy production and phytoremediation. A sustainable practice is to use energy crops to clean up polluted lands or to treat wastewater in constructed wetlands without claiming further arable land for biofuel production. However, the disposal of combustion by-products may add significant costs to the whole process, especially when it deals with toxic waste. This study aimed to investigate the possibility of recycling ash from energy biomass as a fertilizer for agriculture and forestry. In particular, the concentrations of Cd, Cr, Cu, Mn, Pb and Zn were analyzed in the plant tissues and corresponding ash of the grasses Phragmites australis and Arundo donax, collected in an urban stream affected by domestic sewage. Results showed that the metal concentration in ash is 1.5–3 times as high as the values in plant tissues. However, metal enriched ash showed much lower element concentrations than the legal limits for ash reutilization in agriculture and forestry. This study found that biomass ash from constructed wetlands may be considered as a potential fertilizer rather than hazardous waste. Energy from biomass can be a really sustainable and clean option not only through the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, but also through ash recycling for beneficial purposes, thus minimizing the negative impacts of disposal. - Highlights: • Metal content in ash reflects the element concentrations in Phragmites australis and Arundo donax. • Metal enriched ash of both species may be recycled as fertilizers in agriculture and forestry. • Constructed wetlands may produce a large amount of plant ash-based fertilizers from P. australis and A. donax

  4. Heavy metal content in ash of energy crops growing in sewage-contaminated natural wetlands: Potential applications in agriculture and forestry?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bonanno, Giuseppe, E-mail: bonanno.giuseppe@unict.it [Department of Biological, Geological and Environmental Sciences, University of Catania, Via Longo 19, 95125, Catania (Italy); Cirelli, Giuseppe Luigi; Toscano, Attilio [Department of Agri-Food and Environmental Systems Management, University of Catania, Via Santa Sofia 100, 95123, Catania (Italy); Giudice, Rosa Lo; Pavone, Pietro [Department of Biological, Geological and Environmental Sciences, University of Catania, Via Longo 19, 95125, Catania (Italy)

    2013-05-01

    One of the greatest current challenges is to find cost-effective and eco-friendly solutions to the ever increasing needs of modern society. Some plant species are suitable for a multitude of biotechnological applications such as bioenergy production and phytoremediation. A sustainable practice is to use energy crops to clean up polluted lands or to treat wastewater in constructed wetlands without claiming further arable land for biofuel production. However, the disposal of combustion by-products may add significant costs to the whole process, especially when it deals with toxic waste. This study aimed to investigate the possibility of recycling ash from energy biomass as a fertilizer for agriculture and forestry. In particular, the concentrations of Cd, Cr, Cu, Mn, Pb and Zn were analyzed in the plant tissues and corresponding ash of the grasses Phragmites australis and Arundo donax, collected in an urban stream affected by domestic sewage. Results showed that the metal concentration in ash is 1.5–3 times as high as the values in plant tissues. However, metal enriched ash showed much lower element concentrations than the legal limits for ash reutilization in agriculture and forestry. This study found that biomass ash from constructed wetlands may be considered as a potential fertilizer rather than hazardous waste. Energy from biomass can be a really sustainable and clean option not only through the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, but also through ash recycling for beneficial purposes, thus minimizing the negative impacts of disposal. - Highlights: • Metal content in ash reflects the element concentrations in Phragmites australis and Arundo donax. • Metal enriched ash of both species may be recycled as fertilizers in agriculture and forestry. • Constructed wetlands may produce a large amount of plant ash-based fertilizers from P. australis and A. donax.

  5. Alternative agriculture as a substitute for environmental remediation. Production of poultry in radiologically contaminated areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peters, E.L.; Brisbin, I.L.; Kennamer, R.A. Jr.

    1995-01-01

    Exploiting the physiological and ecological characteristics of domesticated species has seldom been considered as a means of returning radiologically contaminated areas to safe agricultural production. However, the proper choice of cultivated and domesticated species, together with appropriate husbandry practices, may allow safe production of foods, fibre and energy. As an example, factors that could permit safe production of food products for human consumption from poultry raised in contaminated areas are considered. These factors include radionuclide transfer from the environment into poultry and methods for reducing radionuclide uptake and/or decontaminating chickens to yield acceptable food products. Studies of growth and feed intake rates of chickens under intensive management and free-ranging husbandries, 137 Cs uptake by chickens exposed to contaminated sediments, potential effects of husbandry on 137 Cs concentrations and 137 Cs elimination by chickens after removal of contaminated feed are described. Data from these and other studies are combined in simulation models of the 13 '7Cs kinetics of chickens. Chicken product 137 Cs concentrations ([ 137 Cs]s) decrease with increases in body mass, apparently as a result of decreasing mass specific intake rates. Husbandries that increase contaminant intake (e.g. free-ranging rearing conditions versus brooder house production) or access to contaminated soils (e.g. scattering feed directly onto contaminated solid versus the use of feeders) increase total body [ 137 Cs]s. However, model simulations indicate that it is possible to produce safe poultry products (especially eggs) at all but unrealistically high feed contamination levels. Even when dietary 137 Cs levels produce [ 137 Cs]s in poultry products that exceed acceptable limits, the high metabolism of poultry leads to a rapid decrease in [ 137 Cs]s once the chickens are placed on uncontaminated rations. This permits the use of contaminated feed or forage for

  6. Hyperspectral remote sensing of vegetation and agricultural crops: knowledge gain and knowledge gap after 40 years of research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thenkabail, Prasad S.; Lyon, John G.; Huete, Alfredo; Edited by Thenkabail, Prasad S.; Lyon, John G.; Huete, Alfredo

    2011-01-01

    The focus of this chapter was to summarize the advances made over last 40+ years, as reported in various chapters of this book, in understanding, modeling, and mapping terrestrial vegetation using hyperspectral remote sensing (or imaging spectroscopy) using sensors that are ground-based, truck-mounted, airborne, and spaceborne. As we have seen in various chapters of this book and synthesized in this chapter, the advances made include: (a) significantly improved characterization and modeling of a wide array of biophysical and biochemical properties of vegetation, (b) ability to discriminate plant species and vegetation types with high degree of accuracies (c) reducing uncertainties in determining net primary productivity or carbon assessments from terrestrial vegetation, (d) improved crop productivity and water productivity models, (b), (e) ability to access stress resulting from causes such as management practices, pests and disease, water deficit or excess; , and (f) establishing more sensitive wavebands and indices to detect plant water\\moisture content. The advent of spaceborne hyperspectral sensors (e.g., NASA’s Hyperion, ESA’s PROBA, and upcoming NASA’s HyspIRI) and numerous methods and techniques espoused in this book to overcome Hughes phenomenon or data redundancy when handling large volumes of hyperspectral data have generated tremendous interest in advancing our hyperspectral applications knowledge base over larger spatial extent such as region, nation, continent, and globe.

  7. The cooperatives not agricultural as an alternative to the local development in the Isla de la Juventud

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liudyana Dominguez Matos

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The work has as objective to analyze the economic results - financial of the non agricultural cooperative “The Kitchen" as alternative for the local development in the Island of Youth, for that to leaned in the economic techniques - financial existent, as well as the comparison, among the access prices to the raw material and the prices of sales that are established for the state gastronomic entities and the non agricultural cooperative. Of the analyzed numbers it was known that the cooperative has difficulties to face its debts, it doesn't generate the sufficient utilities that it allows him to have  immediate and available liquidity, the prices that they market  exceed in 20% to the established ones for the gastronomic state entities, reason that is impacting in a direct way in the decrease of its sales, the tribute doesn't stimulate to that they want to pay it because it is the same quantity that for the state establishments when they have different gain margins; however, even with this context, they have been able to diversify their services to others enterprises, to conceive actions for the rescue of the history and traditions pineras and it is a generating source of employments.

  8. Pond and Irrigation Model (PIM): a tool for simultaneously evaluating pond water availability and crop irrigation demand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ying Ouyang; Gary Feng; Theodor D. Leininger; John Read; Johnie N. Jenkins

    2018-01-01

    Agricultural ponds are an important alternative source of water for crop irrigation to conserve surface and ground water resources. In recent years more such ponds have been constructed in Mississippi and around the world. There is currently, however, a lack of a tool to simultaneously estimate crop irrigation demand and pond water availability. In this study, a Pond-...

  9. Earthworm activity and soil structural changes under conservation agriculture in central Mexico

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Castellanos Navarrete, A.; Rodriguez-Aragonés, C.; Goede, de R.G.M.; Kooistra, M.J.; Sayre, K.D.; Brussaard, L.; Pulleman, M.M.

    2012-01-01

    Crop residue mulching combined with zero tillage and crop rotation, known as conservation agriculture (CA), is being promoted as an alternative system to revert soil degradation in maize-based farming in the central highlands of Mexico. The goal of this paper was to determine the effects of CA vs.

  10. ALTERNATIVE TREE CROPS FOR RECONSTRUCTION OF THE GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE POST-TSUNAMI IN THE COASTAL AREAS OF ACEH BARAT DISTRICT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wahyunto Wahyunto

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Tree farming such as coconut, cocoa, coffee, rubber, and rambutan was dominant in the west coast of Aceh prior to tsunami. The farming is not only important for sustainable livelihood, but also for superior environmental protection. During the tsunami, considerable portion of this ‘green infrastructure’ was devastated. Therefore, a scientifically based land suitability evaluation is needed for supporting the redesign and  reconstruction of the tree-based farming. The objectives of this research were to evaluate the current physical condition of the area and develop recommendation of land suitability for tree crops farming in the area. Field survey for inventory and evaluation of land characteristics was conducted in 2006, 15 months after the tsunami. Land suitability evaluation was conducted by matching field survey data and soil sample analyses in every mapping unit with crop growth requirements. The land suitability map was further matched with the district development plan, existing land uses and land status. The resulted land use recommendation map showed that the marine ecosystem along the coastal line was most suitable for coconut, cacao, coffee, and casuarinas. The recommended tree crops for the ancient sandy beach were areca nut, coconut, rambutan, mango, rubber and oil palm; and for the alluvial ecosystem were coconut, cacao, areca nut, mango, and bread fruit. Peatland of less than 3 m thick was marginally suitable for oil palm and rubber, while those thicker than 3 m were recommended for conservation due to its fragile ecosystem. In the undulating tectonic plain, the suitable tree crops were rubber, oil palm, coconut, and rambutan.

  11. Influence of crop load on the expression patterns of starch metabolism genes in alternate-bearing Citrus trees.

    OpenAIRE

    González Nebauer, Sergio; Renau Morata, Begoña; Lluch Gomez, Yolanda Patricia; BAROJA FERNANDEZ, EDURNE; POZUETA-ROMERO, JAVIER; Molina Romero, Rosa Victoria

    2014-01-01

    [EN] The fruit is the main sink organ in Citrus and captures almost all available photoassimilates during its development. Consequently, carbohydrate partitioning and starch content depend on the crop load of Citrus trees. Nevertheless, little is known about the mechanisms controlling the starch metabolism at the tree level in relation to presence of fruit. The aim of this study was to find the relation between the seasonal variation of expression and activity of the genes involved in carbon...

  12. Influence of crop load on the expression patterns of starch metabolism genes in alternate-bearing citrus trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nebauer, Sergio G; Renau-Morata, Begoña; Lluch, Yolanda; Baroja-Fernández, Edurne; Pozueta-Romero, Javier; Molina, Rosa-Victoria

    2014-07-01

    The fruit is the main sink organ in Citrus and captures almost all available photoassimilates during its development. Consequently, carbohydrate partitioning and starch content depend on the crop load of Citrus trees. Nevertheless, little is known about the mechanisms controlling the starch metabolism at the tree level in relation to presence of fruit. The aim of this study was to find the relation between the seasonal variation of expression and activity of the genes involved in carbon metabolism and the partition and allocation of carbohydrates in 'Salustiana' sweet orange trees with different crop loads. Metabolisable carbohydrates, and the expression and activity of the enzymes involved in sucrose and starch metabolism, including sucrose transport, were determined during the year in the roots and leaves of 40-year-old trees bearing heavy crop loads ('on' trees) and trees with almost no fruits ('off' trees). Fruit altered photoassimilate partitioning in trees. Sucrose content tended to be constant in roots and leaves, and surplus fixed carbon is channeled to starch production. Differences between 'on' and 'off' trees in starch content can be explained by differences in ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylase (AGPP) expression/activity and α-amylase activity which varies depending on crop load. The observed relation of AGPP and UGPP (UDP-glucose pyrophosphorylase) is noteworthy and indicates a direct link between sucrose and starch synthesis. Furthermore, different roles for sucrose transporter SUT1 and SUT2 have been proposed. Variation in soluble sugars content cannot explain the differences in gene expression between the 'on' and 'off' trees. A still unknown signal from fruit should be responsible for this control. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  13. Comparison of three types of oil crop rotation systems for effective use and remediation of heavy metal contaminated agricultural soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yang; Zhou, Xihong; Tie, Boqing; Peng, Liang; Li, Hongliang; Wang, Kelin; Zeng, Qingru

    2017-12-01

    Selecting suitable plants tolerant to heavy metals and producing products of economic value may be a key factor in promoting the practical application of phytoremediation polluted soils. The aim of this study is to further understand the utilization and remediation of seriously contaminated agricultural soil. In a one-year field experiment, we grew oilseed rape over the winter and then subsequently sunflowers, peanuts and sesame after the first harvest. This three rotation system produced high yields of dry biomass; the oilseed rape-sunflower, oilseed rape-peanut and oilseed rape-sesame rotation allowed us to extract 458.6, 285.7, and 134.5 g ha -1 of cadmium, and 1264.7, 1006.1, and 831.1 g ha -1 of lead from soil, respectively. The oilseed rape-sunflower rotation showed the highest phytoextraction efficiency (1.98%) for cadmium. Lead and cadmium in oils are consistent with standards after extraction with n-hexane. Following successive extractions with potassium tartrate, concentrations of lead and cadmium in oilseed rape and peanut seed meals were lower than levels currently permissible for feeds. Thus, this rotation system could be useful for local farmers as it would enable the generation of income during otherwise sparse phytoremediation periods. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Earth Observation-Based Operational Estimation of Soil Moisture and Evapotranspiration for Agricultural Crops in Support of Sustainable Water Management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George P. Petropoulos

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Global information on the spatio-temporal variation of parameters driving the Earth’s terrestrial water and energy cycles, such as evapotranspiration (ET rates and surface soil moisture (SSM, is of key significance. The water and energy cycles underpin global food and water security and need to be fully understood as the climate changes. In the last few decades, Earth Observation (EO technology has played an increasingly important role in determining both ET and SSM. This paper reviews the state of the art in the use specifically of operational EO of both ET and SSM estimates. We discuss the key technical and operational considerations to derive accurate estimates of those parameters from space. The review suggests significant progress has been made in the recent years in retrieving ET and SSM operationally; yet, further work is required to optimize parameter accuracy and to improve the operational capability of services developed using EO data. Emerging applications on which ET/SSM operational products may be included in the context specifically in relation to agriculture are also highlighted; the operational use of those operational products in such applications remains to be seen.

  15. Enhancing Sustainable Development of Diverse Agriculture in Bangladesh

    OpenAIRE

    Alam, Jahangir

    2005-01-01

    The report presents the current status of some selected CGPRT Crops (secondary crops) and examines their potentials in enhancing the sustainable development of diverse agriculture in Bangladesh. Agriculture in Bangladesh is composed of crop, livestock, fisheries and forestry subsectors. This study deals primarily with crop agriculture and the scope of diversification is limited to crop rather than agricultural diversification.

  16. Interacting Agricultural Pests and Their Effect on Crop Yield: Application of a Bayesian Decision Theory Approach to the Joint Management of Bromus tectorum and Cephus cinctus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keren, Ilai N.; Menalled, Fabian D.; Weaver, David K.; Robison-Cox, James F.

    2015-01-01

    Worldwide, the landscape homogeneity of extensive monocultures that characterizes conventional agriculture has resulted in the development of specialized and interacting multitrophic pest complexes. While integrated pest management emphasizes the need to consider the ecological context where multiple species coexist, management recommendations are often based on single-species tactics. This approach may not provide satisfactory solutions when confronted with the complex interactions occurring between organisms at the same or different trophic levels. Replacement of the single-species management model with more sophisticated, multi-species programs requires an understanding of the direct and indirect interactions occurring between the crop and all categories of pests. We evaluated a modeling framework to make multi-pest management decisions taking into account direct and indirect interactions among species belonging to different trophic levels. We adopted a Bayesian decision theory approach in combination with path analysis to evaluate interactions between Bromus tectorum (downy brome, cheatgrass) and Cephus cinctus (wheat stem sawfly) in wheat (Triticum aestivum) systems. We assessed their joint responses to weed management tactics, seeding rates, and cultivar tolerance to insect stem boring or competition. Our results indicated that C. cinctus oviposition behavior varied as a function of B. tectorum pressure. Crop responses were more readily explained by the joint effects of management tactics on both categories of pests and their interactions than just by the direct impact of any particular management scheme on yield. In accordance, a C. cinctus tolerant variety should be planted at a low seeding rate under high insect pressure. However as B. tectorum levels increase, the C. cinctus tolerant variety should be replaced by a competitive and drought tolerant cultivar at high seeding rates despite C. cinctus infestation. This study exemplifies the necessity of

  17. Agricultural Soil Alkalinity and Salinity Modeling in the Cropping Season in a Spectral Endmember Space of TM in Temperate Drylands, Minqin, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danfeng Sun

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the potential of the four-image spectral endmember (EM space comprising sand (SL, green vegetation (GV, saline land (SA, and dark materials (DA, unmixed from Landsat TM/ETM+ to map dryland agricultural soil alkalinity and salinity (i.e., soil alkalinity (pH and soil electrical conductivity (EC in the shallow root zone (0–20 cm using partial least squares regression (PLSR and an artificial neural network (ANN. The results reveal that SA, SL, and GV fractions at the subpixel level, and land surface temperature (LST are necessary independent variables for soil EC modeling in Minqin Oasis, a temperate-arid system in China. The R2 (coefficient of determination of the optimized parameters with the ANN model was 0.79, the root mean squared error (RMSE was 0.13, and the ratio of prediction to deviation (RPD was 1.95 when evaluated against all sampled data. In addition to the aforementioned four variables, the DA fraction and the recent historical SA fraction (SAH in the spring dry season in 2008 were also helpful for soil pH modeling. The model performance is R2 = 0.76, RMSE = 0.24, and RPD = 1.96 for all sampled data. In summary, the stable EMs and LST space of TM imagery with an ANN approach can generate near-real-time regional soil alkalinity and salinity estimations in the cropping period. This is the case even in the critical agronomic range (EC of 0–20 dS·m−1 and pH of 7–9 at which researchers and policy-makers require near-real-time crop management information.

  18. Interacting agricultural pests and their effect on crop yield: application of a Bayesian decision theory approach to the joint management of Bromus tectorum and Cephus cinctus.