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Application and development of a UK nitrous oxide emission model - CC0243

If the nitrous oxide emitted from agriculture is to be reduced to contribute to the reduction in greenhouse gas emission required under the Kyoto Protocol, the formulation, evaluation and implementation of mitigation strategies will be essential. Research during MAFF contract OC9601 adapted the DNDC model to produce an estimate of N2O emission from agriculture in the UK. This project will use the UK-DNDC model to evaluate possible options for the mitigation of N2O emission and their effect on the loss of N as N2O and via other pathways. Nitrous oxide emission from UK agriculture under a scenario of climate change will also be simulated, and a selection of mitigation strategies evaluated under this scenario to provide an indication of the efficacy of such options for the short and longer term.
Data from measurements of emissions from ‘control’ areas will be collated to validate the large UK-DNDC estimate of emission that is a necessary background to any agricultural activity but not attributable to current agricultural practice. Although background emissions may be a relatively large component of the total emission from agricultural land, they are rarely included in estimates of total emission.
1. Establish the likely outcomes of a range of farm management practices and mitigation strategies for nitrous oxide emissions.
2. Update the existing N2O inventory spreadsheet using EFs calculated during (1).
3. Assess the effects of strategies of abatement for other losses of environmental concern (viz ammonia volatilisation) on losses of nitrous oxide from the soil and from leached N
4. Investigate the possible effects of climate change on (i) emission from key land-use types and from the UK as a whole (ii) the efficacy of the proposed abatement strategies under the new climatic conditions.
5. Collect, collate and analyse data on N2O emission from ‘control’ (i.e. without current agricultural inputs) areas of grassland to validate our estimate of baseline emission from this main crop.
6. Through measurement campaigns, provide data on N2O emission from crops where model output indicates that emission may be high.
7. Produce annual updates of nitrous oxide emission from agriculture, initially using MAFF’s IPCC-based methodology.
Project Documents
• Final Report : Application and development of a UK nitrous oxide emission model   (1242k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2000

To: 2004

Cost: £228,587
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Institute of Grassland and Environment Research (IGER)
Climate and Weather              
Climate Change              
Environmental Protection              
Greenhouse Effect              
Sustainable Production              
Fields of Study
Agriculture and Climate Change