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Cultivation practices in UK agriculture and their potential impact on the environment - SP0304

The manner in which arable land is cultivated has a considerable effect on the soil environment. For instance, the level and timing of energy inputs into the soil is likely to have an impact on oxidation of soil organic matter, while the presence of greater power availability may result in depths of operation becoming excessive on shallow soils, leading to topsoil dilution. This study will aim to provide information that supports the Code of Good Agricultural Practice for the Protection of Soil. It will be composed of 6 objectives as follows: 1. Use of a desk study to examine the impact of specific tillage practices on the environment and identification, where possible, of environmental indicators which would provide a measure of these effects; 2. Determination from the desk study information required from farmers; 3. Construction of a questionnaire for farmers, piloting of the questionnaire on up to 24 farmers, and modification of the questionnaire as required; 4. Dispatch of desk survey results and final questionnaire draft to MAFF for approval; 5. Posting of the questionnaire to 2400 farmers (400 in each of 6 groups selected to represent variation in soil type, geographic area and range of cultivation techniques), the number of which has been determined assuming a response rate of 25%; and 6. Collation and analysis of responses, and provision of advice regarding the implication of the outcome. Results of the study will deepen understanding of the likely effects of different tillage practices on physical, biological and chemical processes which occur in the soil.
Project Documents
• Final Report : Cultivation practices in UK agriculture and their potential impact on the environment   (107k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 1995

To: 1996

Cost: £30,221
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Silsoe Research Institute (BBSRC), ADAS UK Ltd.
Fields of Study
Soil Protection