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Reducing runoff with 4R BMPs

Reducing runoff with 4R BMPs

Management practices could benefit both farmers and the environment  

By Kaitlynn Anderson
Staff Writer

By incorporating best management practices (BMPs) into their operations, producers could lend a helping hand to the environment.

In recent research, Canadian scientists found that Ontario growers can significantly reduce nutrient runoff and greenhouse gas emissions by implementing 4R Nutrient Stewardship BMPs, today’s release from Fertilizer Canada said. These practices involve four principles: right source, right rate, right time and right place. 

In fact, producers could reduce runoff on their farms by 60 per cent by applying phosphorus through subsurface banding rather than broadcasting the product, the release said.

In addition, if farmers combine UAN with nitrification and urease inhibitors, they could reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by up to 75 per cent when applying the fertilizer to corn at the eight-leaf growth stage, the researchers found.

Producers could reap economic benefits by following these practices, too, the release stated.

By combining the right place and right source principles to inject UAN fertilizer into the soil, farmers “can improve corn yields by 20 per cent when compared to broadcasting,” the release said.

These results could benefit the province’s agricultural industry.

“It’s important that farmers are able to increase their production to contribute to Ontario’s economy and to do so in a way that minimizes any impacts on the environment,” Clyde Graham, Fertilizer Canada’s spokesperson, told today. “This research contributes to that effort.”

Fertilizer Canada shared the research in its new report, Key Findings of the Canadian 4R Research Network, which highlights 10 practices that producers commonly use on their farms. To read about these actions – including optimizing nitrogen at seeding and split-applying sulphur – click here.

For more information on these BMPs, farmers can contact their agri-retailers, Graham said. Many of these businesses have certified crop advisers with training in 4R Nutrient Stewardship.

Fertilizer Canada also offers resources on its website



stevanovicigor/iStock/Getty Images Plus photo


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