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Brimstone-NPS: Integrated land use & manure management systems to control diffuse nutrient loss from drained clay soils - ES0106

Description
The overall objective of the project is to develop integrated land use and manure management practices to reduce diffuse nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) losses from drained clay soils under arable and grassland farming systems. The study will be carried out on drained clay soils of the Denchworth Association at the existing Brimstone Farm experimental facility in Oxfordshire. Arable (winter cereal) and grassland (two silage cuts followed by grazing) land use management systems, with contrasting cattle slurry application timings (autumn, winter and spring) will be established on field scale hydrologically isolated plots (40 m x 48 m). Drainflow and surface runoff volumes will be measured continuously and water samples collected on a flow proportional basis for nitrate-N, ammonium-N, soluble organic N, total P, total dissolved P, molybdate reactive P and sediment analyses. N and P balances using measured inputs and outputs (where available) will be calculated for each system. The economic and environmental ‘trade-off’s’ associated with the contrasting land use and manure management systems will also be assessed.

The information from this study will contribute to the development of nitrate mitigation options for potential future use in Nitrate Vulnerable Zones and phosphorus mitigation options for use in sensitive surface water catchments. The data will also be used to further develop and validate the MANNER and MAGPIE decision support systems. The work supports DEFRA’s policy objectives of quantifying and limiting nitrogen and phosphorus losses from agricultural land, and improving the utilisation of plant nutrients from farm manures as part of sustainable farming systems.
Objective
The overall objective of the study is to develop integrated land use and manure management practices to reduce diffuse nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) losses from drained clay soils under arable and grassland farming systems.

In more detail the objectives are:

1. To improve our understanding of the processes controlling N and P losses from drained clay soils.

2. To quantify N and P losses in drainage and surface waters from contrasting manure management practices on arable land and grassland.

3. To evaluate and compare N and P losses from drained arable and grassland farming systems

4. To develop an integrated set of manure and land management practices that will help to control nitrate and phosphorus losses from drained clay soils.
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2001

To: 2007

Cost: £1,290,739
Contractor / Funded Organisations
ADAS UK Ltd.
Keywords
Arable Farming              
Environmental Protection              
Grassland              
Manures              
Nitrate              
Phosphorus              
Sustainable Production              
Waste Management