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Additional measurement of ammonia emissions from straw- and slurry-based beef houses - AM0110

The overall objective of the study is to quantify and compare ammonia losses from cattle housed in slurry- and straw-based systems during the 2000-2001 housing period. The information resulting from this project will add to that already gathered under project WA0632 and will also complement the measurements being made in project WA0706, where the manure generated from the over-wintering period of these cattle is being spread to grass and arable farmlets and the NH3 and N2O emissions quantified. This information will allow a more complete evaluation of ammonia emissions from solid manure and liquid manure based systems to be made.
To achieve this objective, ammonia emission measurements will be made from over-wintering beef animals in the polytunnels at IGER. The use of the polytunnels has already been planned for this winter period in order to provide a means of collecting solid manure and slurry from beef cattle as part of project WA0706, however, no ammonia emission measurements have been planned or costed for in the existing project.
Ammonia emissions from animal houses are known to represent approximately 75% of the total losses from the manure management continuum for beef cattle and robust and accurate emission factors are required for this part of the ammonia emissions inventory. Results from project WA0632 suggest that emissions from cattle housed in slurry systems are significantly (30%) greater than those housed in straw-based houses. However, there can be a large variation in emissions from the two systems between years. We now believe that this is attributable to differences in N intake between the different years, with higher N intake resulting in greater NH3 emissions. A third year of study would help to prove/disprove this hypothesis and provide additional information with which to generate accurate emission factors for the NH3 emissions inventory.
This work supports MAFF’s policy objectives of quantifying and limiting ammonia losses from agricultural systems, and improving the utilisation of nutrients from farm manures. The data will also support UK discussions as part of the UNECE Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollutants and the EU Acidification Strategy.
The overall objective of the study is to quantify and compare NH3 emission from cattle housed in slurry and straw based systems. In detail, the specific objectives are

1) To quantify feed intake over the housing period
2) To quantify N excreted by cattle during the housing period
3) To measure NH3 emissions from cattle housed in solid and liquid based systems
4) To compare emission factors from beef cattle in slurry and straw based systems with those measured in project WA0632.
Project Documents
• Final Report : Additional measurement of ammonia emissions from straw- and slurry-based beef houses   (91k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2000

To: 2001

Cost: £32,492
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Institute of Grassland and Environment Research (IGER)
Air Pollution              
Environmental Protection              
Sustainable Production              
Fields of Study
Environmental Protection - Agriculture