Unraveling the interactive effects of tillage, residue, and manure additions on nitrous oxide emissions in grain and silage systems

Project: Research project

Project Details


NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: "Sustainable agriculture" is increasingly demanded by consumers that expect food to be produced with environmentally friendly practices. It is as well an explicit goal of organic producers, who pride themselves in producing food while preserving the integrity of the soil, air, and water resources. In this context, the greenhouse gas emission associated with organic agriculture is largely unknown. The greenhouse gas emission in organic grain and silage systems with high input of manure is, most likely, associated to the emission of nitrous oxide - the laughing gas. But this is no laughing matter. This gas is emitted in low amounts and in episodic events during the cycling of nutrients in the soil. So low are these emissions that it is challenging to measure them. But, unfortunately, this gas has an outsized impact on the greenhouse gas emission of agriculture worldwide. This project seeks to measure the emission of this gas from experimental fields that represent realistic organic grain and silage production systems in the northeastern United States.We have the technical expertise to measure the emissions of nitrous oxide and the knowledge to interpret the results and extrapolate them to other organic systems. In fact, we plan to project our results to a broader range of management systems by enhancing the software Cycles-OT (organic tool), a decision support system that will help producers manage better their production cycle. Because our team works closely with organic producer's networks, our results will flow seamlessly into their information stream and help provide measurable benchmarks of the sustainability of organic systems.

Effective start/end date9/1/158/31/19


  • U.S. Department of Agriculture: $375,243.00
  • National Institute of Food and Agriculture: $118,238.00


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