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Journal of Environmental Quality : Just Published


Accepted, edited articles are published here after author proofing to provide rapid publication and better access to the newest research. Articles are compiled into issues at dl.sciencesocieties.org/publications/jeq, which includes the complete archive.

Citation | Articles posted here are considered published and may be cited by the doi.

Maguire, R.O., P.J. A. Kleinman, C.J. Dell, D.B. Beegle, R.C. Brandt, J.M. McGrath, and Q.M. Ketterings. 2011. Manure application technology in reduced tillage and forage systems: A review. J. Environ. Qual. doi: 10.2134/jeq2009.0228

Current issue: J. Environ. Qual. 46(3)


    • Erin M. Karppinen, Steven D. Siciliano and Katherine J. Stewart
      Application Method and Biochar Type Affect Petroleum Hydrocarbon Degradation in Northern Landfarms

      To integrate biochar as a practical and successful remedial amendment at northern landfarms, components of its formulation and application must be optimized for site-specific environmental conditions. Different biochar amendments were applied to petroleum hydrocarbon (PHC)-contaminated soil at two northern field sites (Iqaluit and Whitehorse) and in a laboratory study at −5°C to determine the effects of application method (injection or incorporation) and biochar type (wood, fishmeal, bonemeal, and/or compost) on PHC degradation and associated soil properties. Incorporation decreased F2 (equivalent nC10–C16) and F3 (equivalent nC16–C34) PHC concentrations in soil after 31 d, whereas injection did not decrease PHC concentrations until Day 334. Bonemeal-derived biochar selectively stimulated F3-PHC degradation in frozen soil over 90 d under controlled laboratory conditions. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Biochar was applied in field trials to assess petroleum hydrocarbon remediation potential.
      • Incorporating soil amendments increased petroleum hydrocarbon degradation in northern soils.
      • Bonemeal biochar enhanced petroleum hydrocarbon degradation under frozen conditions.
      • Nitrate availability was increased in soils with biochar amendments.
      • Liquid water content increased in incorporated treatments, specifically with biochar additions.

      Published: June 9, 2017


    • Yun-Feng Duan, Sabine Reinsch, Per Ambus, Lars Elsgaard and Søren O. Petersen
      Activity of Type I Methanotrophs Dominates under High Methane Concentration: Methanotrophic Activity in Slurry Surface Crusts as Influenced by Methane, Oxygen, and Inorganic Nitrogen

      Livestock slurry is a major source of atmospheric methane (CH4), but surface crusts harboring methane-oxidizing bacteria (MOB) could mediate against CH4 emissions. This study examined conditions for CH4 oxidation by in situ measurements of oxygen (O2) and nitrous oxide (N2O), as a proxy for inorganic N transformations, in intact crusts using microsensors. This was combined with laboratory incubations of crust material to investigate the effects of O2, CH4, and inorganic N on CH4 oxidation, using 13CH4 to trace C incorporation into lipids of MOB. Oxygen penetration into the crust was 2 to 14 mm, confining the potential for aerobic CH4 oxidation to a shallow layer. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Oxygen penetration into surface crusts is shallow.
      • Nitrous oxide accumulates at oxic–anoxic interfaces in surface crusts.
      • Oxygen availability is important to high-concentration CH4 oxidation.
      • Microbial CH4 oxidation is affected by interactions of inorganic N and O2.
      • Activity of Type I methanotrophs dominates under high CH4 concentration.

      Published: June 1, 2017

    • Mariem Yahya, Anicet R. Blanch, Wim G. Meijer, Katerina Antoniou, Fatma Hmaied and Elisenda Ballesté
      Comparison of the Performance of Different Microbial Source Tracking Markers among European and North African Regions

      Microbial source tracking (MST) has been extensively used to detect the sources of fecal pollution in water. The inclusion of MST in water management strategies improves the ecological status of the ecosystem and human and animal health under interdisciplinary analysis in all aspects of health care for humans, animals, and the environment (One Health approach). In this study, the performance of MST markers targeting host-specific Bacteroidales (HF183 and Rum-2-Bac) and Bifidobacterium species (HMBif and CWBif) were evaluated in raw sewage collected from human, ruminant, swine, and poultry sources in Tunisia, Cyprus, Ireland, and Spain. In addition, the ratio between somatic coliphages and bacteriophages infecting Bacteroides GA17 (SOMCPH/GA17PH) was measured in Tunisia and Spain. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • • Differences among geographical areas have been observed for human source tracking markers
      • • Agricultural practices and/or climate conditions may affect the selection of ruminant MST markers.
      • • The MST markers described must be validated in each area before use for water management.

      Published: May 18, 2017


    • Francis X. M. Casey, Nancy W. Shappell and Heldur Hakk
      Halogenated 17β-Estradiol Surrogates: Synthesis, Estrogenic Activity, and Initial Investigations of Fate in Soil/Water Systems

      17β-Estradiol (E2), a natural, endocrine-disrupting, steroid hormone, is excreted by all vertebrates and can enter the environment from domestic animal and wildlife wastes. Multiple field studies using livestock manures as E2 sources suggest significant background concentrations of E2 (e.g., wildlife sources, hydrolysis of E2 conjugates, previous inputs). To accurately understand field fate and transport processes of E2, it is necessary to address the issue of background detections. In this study, two fluorinated and three brominated surrogate compounds of E2 were synthesized and compared to native E2 using soil/water batch experiments and for estrogenic activity. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • • 17β-Estradiol (E2) is naturally present in the environment.
      • • There are no methods to distinguish de novo inputs of E2 from background levels.
      • • Brominated congener of E2 were synthesized and tested as surrogates of E2.

      Published: May 18, 2017


    • Colleen Zumpf, Herbert Ssegane, Maria Cristina Negri, Patty Campbell and Julian Cacho
      Yield and Water Quality Impacts of Field-Scale Integration of Willow into a Continuous Corn Rotation System

      Agricultural landscape design has gained recognition by the international environmental and development community as a strategy to address multiple goals in land, water, and ecosystem service management; however, field research is needed to quantify impacts on specific local environments. The production of bioenergy crops in specific landscape positions within a grain-crop field can serve the dual purpose of producing cellulosic biomass (nutrient recovery) while also providing regulating ecosystem services to improve water quality (nutrient reduction). The effectiveness of such a landscape design was evaluated by the strategic placement of a 0.8-ha short-rotation shrub willow (Salix miyabeana Seemen) bioenergy buffer along marginal soils in a 6.5-ha corn (Zea mays L.) field in a 6-yr field study in central Illinois. The impact of willow integration on water quality (soil water, shallow groundwater leaching, and crop nutrient uptake) and quantity (soil moisture and transpiration) was monitored in comparison with corn in the willow’s first cycle of growth. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • • We assessed impacts of shrub willow integration within an agricultural landscape.
      • • Nitrate leachate was significantly reduced by willow buffers in an Illinois cornfield.
      • • Willows used water resources differently than corn with time.
      • • Improved soil health seen under willow will continue to be monitored.
      • • Influencing factors contributing to low willow biomass will be assessed in the future.

      Published: June 1, 2017


    • Katherine L. Tully, Sheila Abwanda, Margaret Thiong’o, Paul M. Mutuo and Todd S. Rosenstock
      Nitrous Oxide and Methane Fluxes from Urine and Dung Deposited on Kenyan Pastures

      Livestock keeping is ubiquitous in tropical Africa. Urine and dung from livestock release greenhouse gases (GHGs), such as nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4), to the atmosphere. However, the extent of GHG’s impact is uncertain due to the lack of in situ measurements in the region. Here we measured N2O and CH4 emissions from cow urine and dung depositions in two Kenyan pastures that received different amounts of rainfall using static chambers across wet and dry seasons. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Urine and dung deposited on pasture are a significant agricultural source of GHGs.
      • N2O emissions from African cattle excreta were higher in the wet than dry season.
      • Urine and the combination of urine and dung had the highest N2O fluxes across seasons.
      • N2O emissions were positively correlated with excreta N.
      • N2O emission factors from excreta were one-tenth that predicted by the IPCC.

      Published: June 9, 2017

    • Gary W. Feyereisen, Laura E. Christianson, Thomas B. Moorman, Rodney T. Venterea and Jeffrey A. Coulter
      Plastic Biofilm Carrier after Corn Cobs Reduces Nitrate Loading in Laboratory Denitrifying Bioreactors

      Nitrate-nitrogen (nitrate-N) removal rates can be increased substantially in denitrifying bioreactors with a corn (Zea mays L.) cob bed medium compared with woodchips; however, additional organic carbon (C) is released into the effluent. This laboratory column experiment was conducted to test the performance of a postbed chamber of inert plastic biofilm carrier (PBC) after corn cobs (CC) to extend the area of biofilm colonization, enhance nitrate-N removal, lower total organic C losses, and reduce nitrous oxide (N2O) production at warm (15.5°C) and cold (1.5°C) temperatures. Treatments were CC only and CC plus PBC in series (CC-PBC). Across the two temperatures, nitrate-N load removal was 21% greater with CC-PBC than CC, with 54 and 44% of total nitrate N load, respectively. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • A chamber of inert plastic biofilm carrier after corn cobs increased NO3-N removal.
      • The added chamber did not achieve aqueous carbon removal.
      • Denitrifiers colonized the plastic biofilm carrier.
      • At 15.5°C, nitrous oxide cumulative production decreased, but not at 1.5°C.
      • Cold temperature performance was unaffected by the added chamber.

      Published: June 1, 2017


    • Bei Chu and Frieda Eivazi
      Enhanced Dissipation of Selected Herbicides in a Simulated Organic Matrix Biobed: A System to Control On-Farm Point-Source Pollution

      Most farms have a centralized location to fill spray tanks with pesticides and to flush and clean application equipment. These sites, depending on the frequency of use, could be significant sources of surface and groundwater contamination. One approach to minimize this contamination is to install a treatment system, such as a biobed. This study sought to construct a biobed and test the effects of different biomix materials in enhancing the dissipation of herbicides widely used in crop production. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Biobed material composition and ratio were evaluated.
      • The dissipation rates of atrazine and pendimethalin were enhanced in biomixes.
      • Phenol oxidase was higher in peat biomixes than in compost.
      • A mobile, low-cost system was designed to capture contamination on-farm.

      Published: December 28, 2016

    • Ying Wang and Nora Fung Yee Tam
      Glutathione–Ascorbate Cycle Is an Early Warning Indicator of Toxicity of BDE-47 in Mangroves

      Mangroves are often exposed to contamination by polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) from wastewater discharges and solid waste dumping. As one of the most prevalent and toxic PBDE congeners in the environment, 2,2′,4,4′-tetrabromodiphenyl ether (BDE-47) and its oxidative stress deserves more attention. In plants, the glutathione–ascorbate (GSH-AsA) cycle plays an important role in the defensive processes against oxidative stress. However, the importance of this cycle in mangroves to defend against PBDE toxicity has not been reported. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • BDE-47 posed oxidative stress to Kandelia obovata seedlings.
      • Leaf and root biomass of K. obovata was suppressed after short BDE-47 exposure.
      • GSH-AsA cycle-related antioxidants changed significantly immediately after exposure.
      • GSH-AsA cycle was a more sensitive indicator to BDE-47 toxicity than growth.
      • AsA and GPx were early warning indicators to PBDE toxicity in mangrove plants.

      Published: October 13, 2016


    • Anne-Lise Mariet, Géraldine Sarret, Carole Bégeot, Anne-Véronique Walter-Simonnet and Frédéric Gimbert
      Lead Highly Available in Soils Centuries after Metallurgical Activities

      Lead (Pb)-contaminated sites that resulted from past mining and smelting activities still pose toxicological and ecotoxicological issues worldwide. A large body of research has been dedicated to evaluating the contamination and proposing mitigation strategies for recently contaminated sites (from the 19th century until the present). The possible impact of older contaminations has been much less investigated. The present study focuses on soils affected by Pb-silver mining and smelting activities during the 15th to 18th centuries. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Lead persists in bioavailable form several centuries after waste deposition.
      • Lead was mainly sorbed on Fe-Mn (oxyhydr)oxides.
      • PbS in soil points to the use of slag as a kitchen-garden amendment.

      Published: May 18, 2017

    • Jason W. Stuckey, Jianjun Yang, Jian Wang and Donald L. Sparks
      Advances in Scanning Transmission X-Ray Microscopy for Elucidating Soil Biogeochemical Processes at the Submicron Scale

      Organic matter, minerals, and microorganisms are spatially associated in complex organo-mineral assemblages within soils. A mechanistic understanding of processes occurring within organo-mineral assemblages requires noninvasive techniques that minimize any disturbance to the physical and chemical integrity of the sample. Synchrotron-based soft (50–2200 eV) X-ray spectromicroscopic techniques, including scanning transmission X-ray microscopy (STXM), transmission X-ray microscopy (TXM), X-ray photoemission electron microscopy (X-PEEM), and scanning photoelectron microscopy (SPEM), coupled with microspectroscopy (e.g., near-edge X-ray absorption fine structure; NEXAFS) allow for determining the spatial association and speciation of most elements found in soils while maintaining sample integrity. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Analysis of soil processes requires techniques able to speciate light and heavy elements.
      • STXM-NEXAFS determines the speciation of spatially associated light and heavy elements.
      • STXM-NEXAFS enables elucidation of microaggregate and biomineral formation mechanisms.
      • Advances in synchrotron-based STXM will allow for wavelength-limited spatial resolution.

      Published: April 13, 2017

    • Stephen R. Sutton, Antonio Lanzirotti, Matthew Newville, Mark L. Rivers, Peter Eng and Liliana Lefticariu
      Spatially Resolved Elemental Analysis, Spectroscopy and Diffraction at the GSECARS Sector at the Advanced Photon Source

      X-ray microprobes (XRM) coupled with high-brightness synchrotron X-ray facilities are powerful tools for environmental biogeochemistry research. One such instrument, the XRM at the Geo Soil Enviro Center for Advanced Radiation Sources Sector 13 at the Advanced Photon Source (APS; Argonne National Laboratory, Lemont, IL) was recently improved as part of a canted undulator geometry upgrade of the insertion device port, effectively doubling the available undulator beam time and extending the operating energy of the branch supporting the XRM down to the sulfur K edge (2.3 keV). Capabilities include rapid, high-resolution, elemental imaging including fluorescence microtomography, microscale X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy including sulfur K edge capability, and microscale X-ray diffraction. These capabilities are advantageous for (i) two-dimensional elemental mapping of relatively large samples at high resolution, with the dwell times typically limited only by the count times needed to obtain usable counting statistics for low concentration elements, (ii) three-dimensional imaging of internal elemental distributions in fragile hydrated specimens, such as biological tissues, avoiding the need for physical slicing, (iii) spatially resolved speciation determinations of contaminants in environmental materials, and (iv) identification of contaminant host phases. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • X-ray microprobes are powerful tools for environmental biogeochemistry.
      • Upgraded GSECARS XRM operates down to the sulfur K edge.
      • Capabilities: spatially resolved elemental analysis, spectroscopy, and diffraction.
      • Advanced Photon Source upgrade will further advance XRM capabilities.

      Published: February 23, 2017

    • Ranju R. Karna, Matt Noerpel, Aaron R. Betts and Kirk G. Scheckel
      Lead and Arsenic Bioaccessibility and Speciation as a Function of Soil Particle Size

      Bioavailability research of soil metals has advanced considerably from default values to validated in vitro bioaccessibility (IVBA) assays for site-specific risk assessment. Previously, USEPA determined that the soil-size fraction representative of dermal adherence and consequent soil ingestion was <250 μm. This size fraction was widely used in testing efforts for both in vivo and in vitro experiments. However, recent studies indicate the <150-μm size fraction better represents the particle size that adheres to skin for potential ingestion. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Identified critical knowledge gaps regarding the <250-μm vs. <150-μm particle size used for IVBA.
      • Wider implementation of the <150-μm size fraction maintains past validation with <-250 μm fraction.
      • Regardless of increase in total and extractable Pb and As, %IVBA results remained consistent.
      • Using <150-μm particle size for IVBA requires much higher volumes/masses of soils.
      • Synchrotron-based speciation is significant in bioavailability studies to understand the fate and transport of contaminants.

      Published: February 23, 2017

    • Marina Colzato, Marcos Y. Kamogawa, Hudson W.P. Carvalho, Luís R.F. Alleoni and Dean Hesterberg
      Temporal Changes in Cadmium Speciation in Brazilian Soils Evaluated Using Cd L III –Edge XANES and Chemical Fractionation

      Chemical speciation of soil cadmium (Cd) dictates its mobility and potential toxicity in the environment. Our objective was to compare temporal changes in speciation of Cd(II) reacted with samples from six Brazilian soils having varying Cd(II) sorption capacities. Cadmium LIII–edge X-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES) analysis showed there were short-term changes in speciation after reaction with 4.45 mmol Cd kg−1 for 0.5 and 6 h. Chemical fractionation evaluated changes in Cd extractability after reaction with 89 μmol Cd kg−1 for up to 4 mo. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Cadmium speciation showed weak and variable evidence for temporal changes.
      • No evidence for progressive natural attenuation of soil cadmium was found.
      • Cadmium(II) bonded preferentially with soil organic matter and oxide minerals.

      Published: February 2, 2017

    • Peter M Kopittke, Peng Wang, Enzo Lombi and Erica Donner
      Synchrotron-based X-Ray Approaches for Examining Toxic Trace Metal(loid)s in Soil–Plant Systems

      Elevated levels of trace metal(loid)s reduce plant growth, both in soils contaminated by industrial activities and in acid agricultural soils. Although the adverse effects of trace metal(loid)s have long been recognized, there remains much unknown both about their behavior in soils, their toxicity to plants, and the mechanisms that plants use to tolerate elevated concentrations. Synchrotron-based approaches are being utilized increasingly in soil–plant systems to examine toxic metal(loid)s. In the present review, brief consideration is given to the theory of synchrotron radiation. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Synchrotron analyses allow in situ analyses of metal(loid)s in soils and plants.
      • This review provides a brief introduction to the theory of synchrotron radiation.
      • The distribution and speciation of metal(loid)s in soils and plants is reviewed.

      Published: February 2, 2017


    • Claire Baffaut, Nathan O. Nelson, John A. Lory, G.M.M.M. Anomaa Senaviratne, Ammar B. Bhandari, Ranjith P. Udawatta, Daniel W. Sweeney, Matt J. Helmers, Mike W. Van Liew, Antonio P. Mallarino and Charles S. Wortmann
      Multisite Evaluation of APEX for Water Quality: I. Best Professional Judgment Parameterization

      The Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender (APEX) model is capable of estimating edge-of-field water, nutrient, and sediment transport and is used to assess the environmental impacts of management practices. The current practice is to fully calibrate the model for each site simulation, a task that requires resources and data not always available. The objective of this study was to compare model performance for flow, sediment, and phosphorus transport under two parameterization schemes: a best professional judgment (BPJ) parameterization based on readily available data and a fully calibrated parameterization based on site-specific soil, weather, event flow, and water quality data. The analysis was conducted using 12 datasets at four locations representing poorly drained soils and row-crop production under different tillage systems. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Uncalibrated, APEX produced unacceptable site-specific sediment and TP estimates.
      • Acceptable runoff estimates do not translate to acceptable water quality estimates.
      • Distributions of successfully calibrated performance indicator values were normal.
      • Calibration of the APEX model with water quality data remains an essential step.

      Published: April 13, 2017

    • Zachary M. Easton, Peter J.A. Kleinman, Anthony R. Buda, Dustin Goering, Nichole Emberston, Seann Reed, Patrick J. Drohan, M. Todd Walter, Pat Guinan, John A. Lory, Andrew R. Sommerlot and Andrew Sharpley
      Short-term Forecasting Tools for Agricultural Nutrient Management

      The advent of real-time, short-term farm management tools is motivated by the need to protect water quality above and beyond the general guidance offered by existing nutrient management plans. Advances in high-performance computing and hydrologic or climate modeling have enabled rapid dissemination of real-time information that can assist landowners and conservation personnel with short-term management planning. This paper reviews short-term decision support tools for agriculture that are under various stages of development and implementation in the United States: (i) Wisconsin’s Runoff Risk Advisory Forecast (RRAF) System, (ii) New York’s Hydrologically Sensitive Area Prediction Tool, (iii) Virginia’s Saturated Area Forecast Model, (iv) Pennsylvania’s Fertilizer Forecaster, (v) Washington’s Application Risk Management (ARM) System, and (vi) Missouri’s Design Storm Notification System. Although these decision support tools differ in their underlying model structure, the resolution at which they are applied, and the hydroclimates to which they are relevant, all provide forecasts (range 24–120 h) of runoff risk or soil moisture saturation derived from National Weather Service Forecast models. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Advances in weather forecasting, data management, and modeling improve nutrient management.
      • New tools facilitate improved farm decisions in response to real-time weather.
      • Nutrient management can be performed operationally and strategically with real-time tools.

      Published: April 13, 2017

    • Nathan O. Nelson, Claire Baffaut, John A. Lory, G.M.M.M. Anomaa Senaviratne, Ammar B. Bhandari, Ranjith P. Udawatta, Daniel W. Sweeney, Matt J. Helmers, Mike W. Van Liew, Antonio P. Mallarino and Charles S. Wortmann
      Multisite Evaluation of APEX for Water Quality: II. Regional Parameterization

      Phosphorus (P) Index assessment requires independent estimates of long-term average annual P loss from fields, representing multiple climatic scenarios, management practices, and landscape positions. Because currently available measured data are insufficient to evaluate P Index performance, calibrated and validated process-based models have been proposed as tools to generate the required data. The objectives of this research were to develop a regional parameterization for the Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender (APEX) model to estimate edge-of-field runoff, sediment, and P losses in restricted-layer soils of Missouri and Kansas and to assess the performance of this parameterization using monitoring data from multiple sites in this region. Five site-specific calibrated models (SSCM) from within the region were used to develop a regionally calibrated model (RCM), which was further calibrated and validated with measured data. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Regionally calibrated APEX produced very good estimates of site-specific runoff.
      • Regionally calibrated APEX failed to adequately estimate sediment loss.
      • Regionally calibrated APEX P-loss estimates were worse than site-specific models.
      • APEX runoff estimates are adequate for rigorous evaluation of P Index runoff components.
      • APEX sediment loss estimates are unsuitable for evaluation of P Index.

      Published: March 30, 2017

    • Quirine M. Ketterings, Sebastian Cela, Amy S. Collick, Stephen J. Crittenden and Karl J. Czymmek
      Restructuring the P Index to Better Address P Management in New York

      The New York Phosphorus Index (NY-PI) was introduced in 2001 after the release of the state’s first Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) Permit that required a nutrient management plan developed in accordance with NRCS standards. The stakeholder-based approach to development of the NY-PI, combined with a requirement for all regulated farms to determine a NY-PI score for all fields, ensured widespread adoption. While P management greatly improved over time, the initial NY-PI overemphasized soil-test P (STP), allowing for P addition if STP was low, even if the risk of P transport was high. Our goal was to develop a new PI approach that incentivizes implementation of best management practices (BMPs) where P-transport risk is high, building on feedback from certified planners (survey), analysis of a planner-supplied 33,000+ field database with NY-PI information, and modeling of the impacts of specific BMPs on P runoff using data from a central NY CAFO farm. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Stakeholder engagement is essential to develop improved Phosphorus Indices (PIs).
      • A “Transport × BMP”-based PI incentivizes BMP use where risk of P transport is high.
      • In a “Transport × BMP”-based PI, soil-test P sets rate limits to enhance P balances.
      • A “Transport × BMP”-based PI can reduce barriers to regionalization of PIs within watersheds.

      Published: March 2, 2017

    • Carl H. Bolster, Adam Forsberg, Aaron Mittelstet, David E. Radcliffe, Daniel Storm, John Ramirez-Avila, Andrew N. Sharpley and Deanna Osmond
      Comparing an Annual and a Daily Time-Step Model for Predicting Field-Scale Phosphorus Loss

      A wide range of mathematical models are available for predicting phosphorus (P) losses from agricultural fields, ranging from simple, empirically based annual time-step models to more complex, process-based daily time-step models. In this study, we compare field-scale P-loss predictions between the Annual P Loss Estimator (APLE), an empirically based annual time-step model, and the Texas Best Management Practice Evaluation Tool (TBET), a process-based daily time-step model based on the Soil and Water Assessment Tool. We first compared predictions of field-scale P loss from both models using field and land management data collected from 11 research sites throughout the southern United States. We then compared predictions of P loss from both models with measured P-loss data from these sites. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • We compared predictions of P loss between an empirically-based and process-based model.
      • Predictions from both models were well correlated with each other.
      • The process-based model did not result in noticeably better predictions of P loss.
      • APLE predicted greater DP loss and TBET predicted greater PP loss.
      • Results indicate the need for improving accuracy of both models.

      Published: January 19, 2017

    • Peter A. Vadas, Laura W. Good, William E. Jokela, K.G. Karthikeyan, Francisco J. Arriaga and Melanie Stock
      Quantifying the Impact of Seasonal and Short-term Manure Application Decisions on Phosphorus Loss in Surface Runoff

      Agricultural phosphorus (P) management is a research and policy issue due to P loss from fields and water quality degradation. Better information is needed on the risk of P loss from dairy manure applied in winter or when runoff is imminent. We used the SurPhos computer model and 108 site–years of weather and runoff data to assess the impact of these two practices on dissolved P loss. Model results showed that winter manure application can increase P loss by 2.5 to 3.6 times compared with non-winter applications, with the amount increasing as the average runoff from a field increases. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Winter application of dairy manure can significantly increase P loss in surface runoff.
      • Producers have few options to reduce P manure loss by avoiding near-term runoff.
      • Models can help quantify the effect of management on manure P loss in runoff.

      Published: January 19, 2017

    • David B. Baker, Laura T. Johnson, Remegio B. Confesor and John P. Crumrine
      Vertical Stratification of Soil Phosphorus as a Concern for Dissolved Phosphorus Runoff in the Lake Erie Basin

      During the re-eutrophication of Lake Erie, dissolved reactive phosphorus (DRP) loading and concentrations to the lake have nearly doubled, while particulate phosphorus (PP) has remained relatively constant. One potential cause of increased DRP concentrations is P stratification, or the buildup of soil-test P (STP) in the upper soil layer (<5 cm). Stratification often accompanies no-till and mulch-till practices that reduce erosion and PP loading, practices that have been widely implemented throughout the Lake Erie Basin. To evaluate the extent of P stratification in the Sandusky Watershed, certified crop advisors were enlisted to collect stratified soil samples (0–5 or 0–2.5 cm) alongside their normal agronomic samples (0–20 cm) (n = 1758 fields). (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • P stratification increases surficial soil-test levels by 55% over agronomic cores.
      • Agronomic soil-test levels are not good indicators of surficial soil-test levels.
      • Soils in maintenance range account for the largest proportion of DRP runoff risks.
      • Targeted stratification reduction could reduce DRP runoff more than drawdown.
      • Stratification reduction could reduce DRP runoff more quickly than drawdown.

      Published: January 19, 2017

    • Ammar B. Bhandari, Nathan O. Nelson, Daniel W. Sweeney, Claire Baffaut, John A. Lory, Anomaa Senaviratne, Gary M. Pierzynski, Keith A. Janssen and Philip L. Barnes
      Calibration of the APEX Model to Simulate Management Practice Effects on Runoff, Sediment, and Phosphorus Loss

      Process-based computer models have been proposed as a tool to generate data for Phosphorus (P) Index assessment and development. Although models are commonly used to simulate P loss from agriculture using managements that are different from the calibration data, this use of models has not been fully tested. The objective of this study is to determine if the Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender (APEX) model can accurately simulate runoff, sediment, total P, and dissolved P loss from 0.4 to 1.5 ha of agricultural fields with managements that are different from the calibration data. The APEX model was calibrated with field-scale data from eight different managements at two locations (management-specific models). (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • The APEX model has limited ability to simulate effects of changing management.
      • If available, multiple management should be used to calibrate and validate the model.
      • Policy makers must exercise caution in using model-estimated P losses to evaluate PIs.

      Published: December 15, 2016

    • William I. Ford, Kevin W. King, Mark R. Williams and Remegio B. Confesor Jr.
      Modified APEX model for Simulating Macropore Phosphorus Contributions to Tile Drains

      The contribution of macropore flow to phosphorus (P) loadings in tile-drained agricultural landscapes remains poorly understood at the field scale, despite the recognized deleterious impacts of contaminant transport via macropore pathways. A new subroutine that couples existing matrix-excess and matrix-desiccation macropore flow theory and a modified P routine is implemented in the Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender (APEX) model. The original and modified formulation were applied and evaluated for a case study in a poorly drained field in Western Ohio with 31 months of surface and subsurface monitoring data. Results highlighted that a macropore subroutine in APEX improved edge-of-field discharge calibration and validation for both tile and total discharge from satisfactory and good, respectively, to very good and improved dissolved reactive P load calibration and validation statistics for tile P loads from unsatisfactory to very good. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • The field-scale APEX model is modified to account for macropore P contributions.
      • APEX modifications significantly improve hydrology and P simulations for a case study.
      • Macropore flow contributes approximately 48% of flow and 43% of P annually.
      • The model has potential for informing pathway partitioning in P site assessment tools.

      Published: December 1, 2016

    • Alisha Spears Mulkey, Frank J. Coale, Peter A. Vadas, Gary W. Shenk and Gopal X. Bhatt
      Revised Method and Outcomes for Estimating Soil Phosphorus Losses from Agricultural Land in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Model

      Current restoration efforts for the Chesapeake Bay watershed mandate a timeline for reducing the load of nutrients and sediment into receiving waters. The Chesapeake Bay watershed model (WSM) has been used for two decades to simulate hydrology and nutrient and sediment transport; however, spatial limitations of the WSM preclude edge-of-field scale representation of phosphorus (P) losses. Rather, the WSM relies on literature-derived, county-scale rates of P loss (targets) for simulated land uses. An independent field-scale modeling tool, Annual Phosphorus Loss Estimator (APLE), was used as an alternative to the current WSM approach. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • APLE estimated P losses were compared with the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Model’s (WSM) losses.
      • Substituting the APLE estimated P loss into the WSM improved calibration performance.
      • Findings suggest the importance of well-estimated transport factors in modeling P losses.

      Published: October 6, 2016

    • Mark R. Williams, Kevin W. King, Gregory A. LaBarge, Remegio B. Confesor Jr. and Norman R. Fausey
      Edge-Of-Field Evaluation of the Ohio Phosphorus Risk Index

      The Phosphorus Index (PI) has been the cornerstone for phosphorus (P)-based management and planning over the past twenty years, yet field-scale evaluation of many state PIs has been limited. In this study, P loads measured in surface runoff and tile discharge from 40 agricultural fields in Ohio with prevailing management practices were used to evaluate the Ohio PI. Annual P loads were highly variable among fields (dissolved reactive P: 0.03–4.51 kg ha−1, total P: 0.03–6.88 kg ha−1). Both measured annual dissolved reactive P (R2 = 0.36, p < 0.001) and total P (R2 = 0.25, p < 0.001) loads were significantly related to Ohio PI score. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Measured P loads from 40 fields were used to evaluate the Ohio Phosphorus Index.
      • Risk of P loss was linearly related to both measured annual and averaged P loads.
      • Field P management recommendations varied among local, state, and national metrics.
      • Field datasets should be used to improve and calibrate the Ohio Phosphorus Index.

      Published: September 15, 2016

    • Adam Forsberg, David E. Radcliffe, Carl H. Bolster, Aaron Mittelstet, Daniel E. Storm and Deanna Osmond
      Evaluation of the TBET Model for Potential Improvement of Southern P Indices

      Due to a shortage of available phosphorus (P)-loss datasets, simulated data from an accurate quantitative P transport model could be used to evaluate a P Index. The objective of this study was to compare predictions from the Texas Best Management Practice Evaluation Tool (TBET) against measured P-loss data to determine whether the model could be used to improve P Indices in the southern region. Measured P-loss data from field-scale study sites in Arkansas, Georgia, and North Carolina were used to assess the accuracy of TBET for predicting field-scale loss of P. We found that event-based predictions using an uncalibrated model were generally poor. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Predictions from an accurate P transport model could be used to evaluate a P Index.
      • Predictions from an uncalibrated TBET model were generally poor.
      • A calibrated TBET model was better but did not meet the performance criteria.
      • A curve number approach for runoff could be incorporated into P Indices.

      Published: January 19, 2017January 19, 2017


    • Isabelle Pattis, Elaine Moriarty, Craig Billington, Brent Gilpin, Roger Hodson and Nick Ward
      Concentrations of Campylobacter spp., Escherichia coli , Enterococci, and Yersinia spp. in the Feces of Farmed Red Deer in New Zealand

      Intensive deer farming can cause environmental issues, mainly by its impact on soils and water quality. In particular, there is a risk to the microbial quality of water, as high quantities of suspended sediment and fecal bacteria can enter into water systems. The feces of farmed red deer (Cervus elaphus, n = 206) from Canterbury and Southland, New Zealand, were analyzed with regard to the presence of Campylobacter spp., Escherichia coli, enterococci, and Yersinia spp.. Enterococci and E. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Deer feces are a potential source of human campylobacteriosis.
      • All Campylobacter genotypes were found among human clinical isolates in New Zealand.
      • Campylobacter spp. prevalence in deer feces is low compared with other livestock.
      • The average daily excretion of Campylobacter-positive deer and sheep is comparable.
      • Access of deer to waterways should be restricted.

      Published: June 1, 2017


    • Olivier Proux, Eric Lahera, William Del Net, Isabelle Kieffer, Mauro Rovezzi, Denis Testemale, Mohammed Irar, Sara Thomas, Antonio Aguilar-Tapia, Elena F. Bazarkina, Alain Prat, Marie Tella, Mélanie Auffan, Jérôme Rose and Jean-Louis Hazemann
      High-Energy Resolution Fluorescence Detected X-Ray Absorption Spectroscopy: A Powerful New Structural Tool in Environmental Biogeochemistry Sciences

      The study of the speciation of highly diluted elements by X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) is extremely challenging, especially in environmental biogeochemistry sciences. Here we present an innovative synchrotron spectroscopy technique: high-energy resolution fluorescence detected XAS (HERFD-XAS). With this approach, measurement of the XAS signal in fluorescence mode using a crystal analyzer spectrometer with a ∼1-eV energy resolution helps to overcome restrictions on sample concentrations that can be typically measured with a solid-state detector. We briefly describe the method, from both an instrumental and spectroscopic point of view, and emphasize the effects of energy resolution on the XAS measurements. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Study shows high-resolution spectroscopic data for an improved speciation determination.
      • Speciation of trace elements down and below the μg g−1 level is shown.
      • Measurements are made in vivo or at natural concentration.

      Published: May 8, 2017

    • Ryo Sekine, Ezzat R. Marzouk, Maryam Khaksar, Kirk G. Scheckel, John P. Stegemeier, Gregory V. Lowry, Erica Donner and Enzo Lombi
      Aging of Dissolved Copper and Copper-based Nanoparticles in Five Different Soils: Short-term Kinetics vs. Long-term Fate

      With the growing availability and use of copper-based nanomaterials (Cu-NMs), there is increasing concern regarding their release and potential impact on the environment. In this study, the short-term (≤5 d) aging profile and the long-term (135 d) speciation of dissolved Cu, copper oxide, and copper sulfide nanoparticles (CuO-NPs and CuS-NPs) were investigated in five different soils using X-ray absorption spectroscopy. Soil pH was found to strongly influence the short-term chemistry of the Cu-NMs added at 100 mg kg−1 above background. Low pH soils promoted rapid dissolution of CuO-NPs that effectively aligned their behavior to that of dissolved Cu within 3 d. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Short-term reactions of Cu are form (dissolved or nanoparticle) and soil chemistry dependent.
      • In low pH soils, CuO-NPs dissolved rapidly and behaved similarly to dissolved Cu.
      • CuO-NPs persisted longer in alkaline soils and soils with high organic matter content.
      • In the long term, Cu, CuO-NPs, and CuS-NPs transform into Cu bound to FeO(OH) or NOM.
      • Chemical fate of Cu added to soils is largely independent of the original Cu form.

      Published: May 8, 2017


    • Nicole M. Fiorellino, Joshua M. McGrath, Peter A. Vadas, Carl H. Bolster and Frank J. Coale
      Use of Annual Phosphorus Loss Estimator (APLE) Model to Evaluate a Phosphorus Index

      The Phosphorus (P) Index was developed to provide a relative ranking of agricultural fields according to their potential for P loss to surface water. Recent efforts have focused on updating and evaluating P Indices against measured or modeled P loss data to ensure agreement in magnitude and direction. Following a recently published method, we modified the Maryland P Site Index (MD-PSI) from a multiplicative to a component index structure and evaluated the MD-PSI outputs against P loss data estimated by the Annual P Loss Estimator (APLE) model, a validated, field-scale, annual P loss model. We created a theoretical dataset of fields to represent Maryland conditions and scenarios and created an empirical dataset of soil samples and management characteristics from across the state. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Our methods expanded upon methods developed by Bolster to modify and evaluate PIs.
      • Our methods provide practical guidance to other states for modification of PIs.
      • A theoretical dataset was simulated to represent geographical conditions in Maryland.
      • Removal of categorical variables and weights increased PI and P loss correlation.
      • Fertilizer and subsurface components should be evaluated like surface components.

      Published: May 8, 2017


    • J. P. McNeal, L. J. Krutz, M. A. Locke, M. M. Kenty, R. L. Atwill, D. M. Pickelmann, C. J. Bryant, C. W. Wood, B. R. Golden and M. S. Cox
      Application of Polyacrylamide (PAM) through Lay-Flat Polyethylene Tubing: Effects on Infiltration, Erosion, N and P Transport, and Corn Yield

      Polyacrylamides (PAMs), when applied as a soil amendment, purportedly improve soil infiltration, decrease erosion, and reduce offsite agrochemical transport. The effect of PAM on infiltration, erosion, agrochemical transport, and crop yield when applied in furrow to mid-southern US production systems has not been evaluated. The objective of this study was to assess PAM effects on infiltration, erosion, corn (Zea mays L.) grain yield, and nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) transport when applied at 10 mg L−1 through lay-flat polyethylene tubing. A 2-yr field study was conducted at the Mississippi State Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville, MS, on a Dundee silt loam and a Forestdale silty clay loam. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Polyacrylamide applied in furrow improves soil infiltration.
      • Polyacrylamide applied in furrow has minimal effect on erosion and nutrient transport.
      • Polyacrylamide applied in furrow improves corn yield.

      Published: June 9, 2017


    • H. Zhang, R. P. Voroney and G. W. Price
      Effects of Temperature and Activation on Biochar Chemical Properties and Their Impact on Ammonium, Nitrate, and Phosphate Sorption

      There have been limited studies of how pyrolysis temperature and activation processes alter the chemical properties of biochar and how these changes influence ammonium (NH4+), nitrate (NO3), and phosphate (PO43−) sorption. This study compared the chemical properties of biochars and activated biochars (ActBC with steam and CO2 activation) produced by slow pyrolysis at 200 (BC200), 400 (BC400), 600 (BC600), 800 (ActBC200, ActBC400, ActBC600), and 850°C (sulfachar-S enriched biochar with steam activation). Quantitative solid-state 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and elemental analysis were used to study temperature and activation on biochar chemical properties. The sorption capacity of biochars for NH4+, NO3, and PO43− were measured by batch sorption experiments. (continued)

      Core Ideas:
      • Pyrolysis temperature and activation alters the chemical properties of biochar.
      • Pyrolysis temperatures >400°C increase the formation of aromatic C structures.
      • Activation increases the sorption capacity of biochar for nitrate and phosphate.
      • Activated biochars may have use as adsorbents for reducing nutrient-leaching in soils.

      Published: June 15, 2017

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