Subsurface Drainage & Water Quality                                     Bruce Atherton, P.E.Agribusiness Showcase & Confer...
Subsurface Drainage and Water Quality Review effects of agricultural subsurface drainage Review nutrient levels in strea...
BENEFITS OF CROPLAND          DRAINAGE   Remove excess water   Improve crop rooting environment   Enhanced soil warming...
BackgroundBars Indicate   ShadingRelative Crop   IndicatesYield           Reduction inIncrease with   Year-to-YearDrainage...
Subsurface Drainage in Iowa   Estimates for Iowa       36 million acres of land       23 million acres of row crops    ...
Environmental Effects of Subsurface Drainage• Compared to undrained agricultural land, improved  subsurface drainage can (...
Change in Nitrate Concentrations                              in Midwest Rivers                                           ...
River Nitrate Levels             (Concentration is important for drinking water suppliers)                                ...
Gulf Hypoxia(Load is also important)                           2002 estimated                           nitrate/nitrite lo...
Gulf Hypoxia Action Plan                     Nutrient Reduction Goals Current (2003-2007) average hypoxic zone is  14,644...
Gulf Hypoxia                     Changes in Nutrient Loading   Annual loads from 2001-2005 time period    (Measured again...
Gulf Hypoxia                Nutrient Reduction Strategies   USDA will place additional emphasis on    conservation practi...
Variability in Drainage, Nitrate                  Concentration and Nitrate Loss                                          ...
Nutrient Reduction Strategies• Nutrient management• Cropping changes• Cover crops                             Photo by Lyn...
Agronomic Strategies   Nutrient management   Reduced tillage   Cropping changes   Cover crops
Nutrient management effects     Some NO3-N loss will occur even with no N application     Increased soil NO3-N resulting...
Impact of Nitrogen Application Rate  Source: Slide courtesy of Matt Helmers, Ph. D., ISU Extension Agricultural Engineer  ...
Nitrate-N Concentration as aFunction of Nitrogen ApplicationSource: Slide courtesy of Matt Helmers, Ph. D., ISU Extension ...
Impact of Nitrogen Application Rate                               ~15% Reduction  Source: Slide courtesy of Matt Helmers, ...
Tillage Effects     Study of four tillage systems in NW Iowa        • NO3-N concentrations in moldboard- and chisel-plowe...
Crop Effects        NO3-N concentration in shallow saturated soils        •      0.2 mg/L – native grass in RR right-of-w...
Cover Crops Effects     Iowa study, C-Sb rotation, rye planted each year     Canisteo and Nicollet soils in Boone Co.   ...
Nutrient Reduction Strategies• Nutrient management• Cropping changes• Cover crops                             Photo by Lyn...
Constructed Wetlands   Remove nitrogen through denitrification       • Studies show average total nitrogen removal ranges...
Constructed Wetlands   Iowa Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP)   Research at Iowa State University has show...
Drainage Water Treatment                             Woodchip BioreactorNitrate-nitrogen isremoved from thedrainage water ...
Bioreactors   Several Bioreactors    have been installed in    Iowa, many with financial    assistance from the Iowa    S...
Nutrient Reduction Strategies• Nutrient management• Cropping changes• Cover crops                             Photo by Lyn...
Golden Rule of DrainageOnly release the amount of water necessary toinsure trafficable conditions for field operations and...
Drain Design Modifications     Decrease drainage intensity        • Wider spacing        • Shallower depths     Drainage...
Hydrological modifications of subsurface (tile) drainage systems to reduce                  Subsurface Drainage Typessubsu...
Subsurface (tile) Drainage System : Representationin DRAINMOD     Evapotranspiration                              Evapotra...
Shallow Drainage   Minnesota Research         15% reduction in nitrate loss         As high as 40% on some plots      ...
Nitrate Loss & Drain Depth        Source: Illinois Drainage Guide (online). http://www.wq.uiuc.edu/dg/
Hydrological modifications of subsurface (tile) drainage systems to reduce                  Subsurface Drainage Typessubsu...
Drainage Water Management                       (Controlled Drainage)   Since 1984, over 4000 water control structures af...
Drainage Design                          The Influence of Slope                                    Raised Water Table     ...
Typical layout of subsurface drainage system                        Image courtesy of Agri Drain Corp.
Idealized drain layout for drainage water management (DWM)Drain laterals laid on contour to maximize area in management zo...
Seasonal Water Table Management                                                               Non-growing season          ...
Seasonal Water Table Management                        Source: Illinois NRCS
Managing the Water Table                                         ISU Research – Crawfordsville, Iowa                      ...
Managing the Water Table                                    ISU Research – Crawfordsville, Iowa                           ...
DWM Example of Area ControlledWater Controlstructure set justbelow 1128contour.Shaded areaincludes the areabetween 1128and...
Drainage Water ManagementDrainage Water Management - Drain layout at a Minnesota site     Source: Agriculture Drainage Man...
Drainage Water Management                             Southeast Iowa Research   Drainage water management through control...
Wetland-Reservoir-Subirrigation (WRSIS)A WRSIS is a watermanagement system tocollect subsurface drainageand runoff, treat ...
WRSIS BenefitsPotential benefits of this system inlcude:(1)   enhanced crop yields,(2)   reduced offsite release of nutrie...
WRSIS Yield BenefitsAs of 2006, at 3 sites, 1996-2006 WRSIS subirrigatedyield increases for corn andsoybeans, respectively...
Schematic of nitrogen transformation and              retention in a riparian buffer.                                     ...
Question:   Could reconnecting tile flow to riparian buffers remove    substantial amounts of nitrate before it reaches s...
Induced interflow            a) Enhanced uptake                         b) Enhanced denitrification           c) Surface d...
Saturated Buffer Summary•1st year shows re-saturating riparian buffers can removeall the nitrate that is diverted into the...
SummaryApproach             Nitrate     Limitations                     ReductionNutrient             0 – 15%     Most red...
Summary (Cont)Approach            Nitrate Reduction LimitationsConstructed         37 – 65%                    TopographyW...
NRCS Financial AssistanceCover Crop         Practice Code 340   Crops including grasses, legumes, and forbs planted for s...
NRCS Financial AssistanceBioreactor          Practice Code 747   A structure containing a carbon source (wood chips) to t...
NRCS Financial AssistanceDrainage Water Management Plan            Conservation Activity Plan - 130   Plan is completed b...
NRCS Financial AssistanceStructure for Water Control            Practice Code 587   Installation of a water control struc...
NRCS Financial AssistanceDrainage Water Management          Practice Code 554   This is the annual management of the cont...
Mississippi River BasinHealthy Watersheds Initiative
Mississippi River Basin            Healthy Watersheds Initiative   13 state effort   $80,000,000 per year for 4 years (a...
Farm Bill Compliance    •When producing an annual agricultural commodity, USDA    program participants must apply an appro...
Wetland Delineation Process                                    (abridged)   Producer requests wetland determination via f...
Allowable Maintenance ActionsAllowable Maintenance   (1) Maintenance or improvement of drainage systems is allowable on a...
Contact information:Bruce Atherton, P.E.Agricultural EngineerUSDA-NRCS1513 N. Ankeny Blvd., Ste. 3Ankeny, IA 50023-4167Ph:...
Soil & Water Management - Bruce Atherton, NRCS - Bioreactors to Mitigate Nutrient Discharge in Field Drainage
Soil & Water Management - Bruce Atherton, NRCS - Bioreactors to Mitigate Nutrient Discharge in Field Drainage
Soil & Water Management - Bruce Atherton, NRCS - Bioreactors to Mitigate Nutrient Discharge in Field Drainage
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Soil & Water Management - Bruce Atherton, NRCS - Bioreactors to Mitigate Nutrient Discharge in Field Drainage

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This presentation will review the issues involved with nitrate nitrogen export from agricultural subsurface drainage (tile).

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  • Why have the nitrate-nitrogen concentrations changed?
  • Soil & Water Management - Bruce Atherton, NRCS - Bioreactors to Mitigate Nutrient Discharge in Field Drainage

    1. 1. Subsurface Drainage & Water Quality Bruce Atherton, P.E.Agribusiness Showcase & Conference Agricultural EngineerFebruary 7, 2012 NRCS, Ankeny, Iowa
    2. 2. Subsurface Drainage and Water Quality Review effects of agricultural subsurface drainage Review nutrient levels in streams, especially nitrates Review strategies to reduce nitrate export from field to stream and the effectiveness of each Look at NRCS cost-share and payment rates Reminder of Conservation Compliance
    3. 3. BENEFITS OF CROPLAND DRAINAGE Remove excess water Improve crop rooting environment Enhanced soil warming Improved trafficabilty  More timely field operations  Earlier planting date Reduce soil compaction Increase nitrogen availability and efficiency Save energy Reduce runoff and erosion Reduce flooding potential Increase yields and income
    4. 4. BackgroundBars Indicate ShadingRelative Crop IndicatesYield Reduction inIncrease with Year-to-YearDrainage Variability inImprovement Crop Yields
    5. 5. Subsurface Drainage in Iowa Estimates for Iowa  36 million acres of land  23 million acres of row crops  9 million acres with artificial subsurface drainage (742,500 miles at 100 foot spacing)  6 million acres in 3000+ organized drainage districts Source: Baker, et al. 2004. Subsurface Drainage in Iowa and the Water Quality Benefits and Problem
    6. 6. Environmental Effects of Subsurface Drainage• Compared to undrained agricultural land, improved subsurface drainage can (at the field level) • Reduce the peak runoff rate 15 to 30% • Reduce the total surface runoff that leaves the site 29 to 65% • Reduce sediment losses by 16-65% • Reduce the loss of phosphorus up to 45% • Reduce the loss of soil-bound nutrients 30 to 50% • Increase NO3-N lossesSource: Zucker, L.A. and L.C. Brown (Eds.). 1998. Agricultural Drainage: Water Quality Impacts and SubsurfaceDrainage Studies in the Midwest. Ohio State University Extension Bulletin 871. The Ohio State University.
    7. 7. Change in Nitrate Concentrations in Midwest Rivers In the 20th century there were changes in: • land use / cropping • fertilizer use • improved drainageSource: Goolsby, D.A. and W.A. Battaglin. 2000. Nitrogen in the Mississippi Basin-Estimating Sources and Predicting Flux to the Gulf of Mexico
    8. 8. River Nitrate Levels (Concentration is important for drinking water suppliers) Iowa River at Gifford 16 14 12 Nitrate + Nitrite (mg/L) 10 8 6 4 2 0 EPA Drinking Water Standard TrendlineSource: Mary Skopec, Ph.D., IOWATER & Stream Monitoring Coordinator, Iowa DNR. Personal Communicatoin, December 2011.
    9. 9. Gulf Hypoxia(Load is also important) 2002 estimated nitrate/nitrite loading: 960,000 metric tons (12th highest in 22 yrs)
    10. 10. Gulf Hypoxia Action Plan Nutrient Reduction Goals Current (2003-2007) average hypoxic zone is 14,644 km2 Goal is 5,000 km2 hypoxic zone (5-yr average) Strategy is a target nutrient reduction of:  45% reduction in total nitrogen flux  45% reduction in total phosphorus flux (Measured against average 1980 - 1996 levels) Source: Draft Hypoxia 2008 Action Plan, November 9, 2007
    11. 11. Gulf Hypoxia Changes in Nutrient Loading Annual loads from 2001-2005 time period (Measured against average 1980 - 1996 levels)  21% reduction in total nitrogen flux  12% increase in total phosphorus flux Current load estimates by source  Point sources - 22% of N loads, 34% of P loads  Point sources - higher share than earlier estimates Source: Draft Hypoxia 2008 Action Plan, November 9, 2007
    12. 12. Gulf Hypoxia Nutrient Reduction Strategies USDA will place additional emphasis on conservation practices with high potential for reducing nutrient loadings, such as  nutrient management  cover crops  siting of wetlands  on-farm drainage water management Source: Draft Hypoxia 2008 Action Plan, November 9, 2007
    13. 13. Variability in Drainage, Nitrate Concentration and Nitrate Loss Nitrate-nitrogen Concentration (ppm) 30 Drainage 30 80 Nitrate-nitrogen Loss (lb-N/ac) Nitrate-N Concentration 25 Nitrate-N Loss 25 60Drainage (in) 20 20 15 15 40 10 10 20 5 5 0 0 0 19 0 19 1 19 2 19 3 19 4 19 5 19 6 19 7 19 8 20 9 20 0 20 1 20 2 20 3 er 4 e 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 0 0 0 0 Av 0 ag 19 Corn-Soybean Rotation 150/160 lb-N/acre Application Rate Source: Slide courtesy of Matt Helmers, Ph. D., ISU Extension Agricultural Engineer Data based on a research study at Gilmore City, Iowa
    14. 14. Nutrient Reduction Strategies• Nutrient management• Cropping changes• Cover crops Photo by Lynn Betts, USDA-NRCS Photo by Lynn Betts, USDA-NRCS • Constructed Wetlands • Bioreactors Photo Courtesy of IDALS • Drainage design • Drainage water management Photo courtesy The Ohio State University Photo by Bruce Voights, Wright SWCD
    15. 15. Agronomic Strategies Nutrient management Reduced tillage Cropping changes Cover crops
    16. 16. Nutrient management effects Some NO3-N loss will occur even with no N application Increased soil NO3-N resulting from large N applications appears to be buffered by large amount of NO3-N naturally present in soil In one Iowa study, NO3-N concentrations were not higher for fall applied N Split N applications during the growing season have not shown large or consistent reduction in NO3-N concentrations in drainage water Source: Baker, et al. 2004. Subsurface Drainage in Iowa and the Water Quality Benefits and Problem. In: Proceedings of the Eighth International Drainage Symposium, March 21-24, 2004.
    17. 17. Impact of Nitrogen Application Rate Source: Slide courtesy of Matt Helmers, Ph. D., ISU Extension Agricultural Engineer Data based on a research study at Gilmore City, Iowa
    18. 18. Nitrate-N Concentration as aFunction of Nitrogen ApplicationSource: Slide courtesy of Matt Helmers, Ph. D., ISU Extension Agricultural EngineerData based on a research study at Gilmore City, Iowa
    19. 19. Impact of Nitrogen Application Rate ~15% Reduction Source: Slide courtesy of Matt Helmers, Ph. D., ISU Extension Agricultural Engineer Data based on a research study at Gilmore City, Iowa
    20. 20. Tillage Effects Study of four tillage systems in NW Iowa • NO3-N concentrations in moldboard- and chisel-plowed fields averaged 30-50% higher than for flat and ridged no-till fields. (C-Sb rotation) • In continuous corn, losses from no-till fields were about the same as for plowed field because of increased flow. Differences may be due to: • Change in volume and route of infiltration • Difference of N mineralization Source: Baker, et al. 2004. Subsurface Drainage in Iowa and the Water Quality Benefits and Problem. In: Proceedings of the Eighth International Drainage Symposium, March 21-24, 2004.
    21. 21. Crop Effects NO3-N concentration in shallow saturated soils • 0.2 mg/L – native grass in RR right-of-way • >10 mg/L – row crop field < 20’ away Studies in Iowa showed much reduced NO3-N concentrations for alfalfa, CRP, and small grains A Minnesota study showed an 90% reduction in NO3-N leaching losses with CRP Another study of alfalfa or alfalfa/grass vs. C-Sb rotation showed 96% reduction in NO3 lost in subsurface drains Source: Baker, et al. 2004. Subsurface Drainage in Iowa and the Water Quality Benefits and Problem. In: Proceedings of the Eighth International Drainage Symposium, March 21-24, 2004.
    22. 22. Cover Crops Effects Iowa study, C-Sb rotation, rye planted each year Canisteo and Nicollet soils in Boone Co. • Significantly reduced subsurface drainage water NO3 concentrations and NO3 loads in all 4 years • 4-year average reduction in NO3 concentration was 59% • 4-year average reduction in NO3 load was 61% • Corn yield reduction in 2002 but not 2004 • No Soybean yield reduction Source: Kaspar et al. 2007. Rye Cover Crop and Gamagrass Strip Effects on NO 3 Concentration and Load in Tile Drainage. J. Environ. Qual. 36:1503-1511.
    23. 23. Nutrient Reduction Strategies• Nutrient management• Cropping changes• Cover crops Photo by Lynn Betts, USDA-NRCS Photo by Lynn Betts, USDA-NRCS • Constructed Wetlands • Bioreactors Photo Courtesy of IDALS • Drainage design • Drainage water management Photo courtesy The Ohio State University Photo by Bruce Voights, Wright SWCD
    24. 24. Constructed Wetlands Remove nitrogen through denitrification • Studies show average total nitrogen removal ranges from 37% to 65% Photo by Bruce Atherton, Iowa NRCS Source: Appleboom, T.W., and J.L. Fouss. 2004. Methods for removing Nitrate Nitrogen from Agricutlural Draiange Waters: A Review and Assessment. ASABE Paper No. 062328. St. Joseph, MI: ASABE.
    25. 25. Constructed Wetlands Iowa Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) Research at Iowa State University has shown that wetlands meeting CREP requirements will remove 40-90% of the nitrate received The area of these wetlands is 0.5 % to 2% of the contributing watershed area Photo by Bruce Atherton, Iowa NRCS
    26. 26. Drainage Water Treatment Woodchip BioreactorNitrate-nitrogen isremoved from thedrainage water bydenitrification inwhich nitrate isconverted to mostlynitrogen gas Design by Richard Cooke, University of Illinois Source: Christianson, Laura and Matthew Helmers. 2011. Woodchip bioreactors for nitrate in agricultural drainage. Iowa State University Extension Publication. PMR 1008. Available at: https://store.extension.iastate.edu/ItemDetail.aspx?ProductID=13691.
    27. 27. Bioreactors Several Bioreactors have been installed in Iowa, many with financial assistance from the Iowa Soybean Association Bioreactors are eligible for NRCS funding assistance (EQIP) Nitrate reduction varies from 10% to 90+%, averages ~35- 40% Still in research & Photo by Bruce Voights, Wright SWCD demonstration stage
    28. 28. Nutrient Reduction Strategies• Nutrient management• Cropping changes• Cover crops Photo by Lynn Betts, USDA-NRCS Photo by Lynn Betts, USDA-NRCS • Constructed Wetlands • Bioreactors Photo Courtesy of IDALS • Drainage design • Drainage water management Photo courtesy The Ohio State University Photo by Bruce Voights, Wright SWCD
    29. 29. Golden Rule of DrainageOnly release the amount of water necessary toinsure trafficable conditions for field operations andto provide an aerated crop root zone any drainage in excess of this rule likely carries away nitrate and water that is no longer available for crop uptake - Attributed to Wayne SkaggsPrecision drainage?
    30. 30. Drain Design Modifications Decrease drainage intensity • Wider spacing • Shallower depths Drainage Water Management Source: Appleboom, T.W., and J.L. Fouss. 2004. Methods for removing Nitrate Nitrogen from Agricutlural Draiange Waters: A Review and Assessment. ASABE Paper No. 062328. St. Joseph, MI: ASABE.
    31. 31. Hydrological modifications of subsurface (tile) drainage systems to reduce Subsurface Drainage Typessubsurface drainage from Iowa’s tile landscapes:- Conventional Drainage Free Outlet Shallow Drainage Controlled Drainage
    32. 32. Subsurface (tile) Drainage System : Representationin DRAINMOD Evapotranspiration Evapotranspiration Precipitation PrecipitationSurface runoff Surface runoff Lateral Water table Lateral seepage seepage Drain Drain Subsurface drainage Subsurface drainage Vertical seepage Impermeable layer
    33. 33. Shallow Drainage Minnesota Research  15% reduction in nitrate loss  As high as 40% on some plots  15-40% water conserved  No yield changes observed Source: Gary Sands, P.E.
    34. 34. Nitrate Loss & Drain Depth Source: Illinois Drainage Guide (online). http://www.wq.uiuc.edu/dg/
    35. 35. Hydrological modifications of subsurface (tile) drainage systems to reduce Subsurface Drainage Typessubsurface drainage from Iowa’s tile landscapes:- Conventional Drainage Free Outlet Shallow Drainage Controlled Drainage
    36. 36. Drainage Water Management (Controlled Drainage) Since 1984, over 4000 water control structures affecting about 400,000 acres have been installed in North Carolina. Conservative estimates based on results of research indicate that these systems, properly managed, reduced N losses to coastal streams and estuaries by 4 million pounds annually. Research in North Carolina (1990-2010) showed:  Controlled drainage plots on both sites experienced significant (10.4%) corn yield increases compared to the free drainage plots.  No significant change in wheat yields was observed under CD.  Soybean yield increased in all years. Research in the Midwest has failed to show significant yield increases Source: C.A. Poole et al. 2011. The Effects of Drainage Water Management on Crop Yields in Eastern North Carolina. ASABE Paper No. 1111599. St. Joseph, MI: ASABE.
    37. 37. Drainage Design The Influence of Slope Raised Water Table Tile Riser Boards (Adjustable)The water level control device place in a tile line. The area impacted is a function ofthe slope of the field. The flatter the field the greater the area impacted.
    38. 38. Typical layout of subsurface drainage system Image courtesy of Agri Drain Corp.
    39. 39. Idealized drain layout for drainage water management (DWM)Drain laterals laid on contour to maximize area in management zone Image courtesy of Agri Drain Corp.
    40. 40. Seasonal Water Table Management Non-growing season Raise to near the surface Growing season Raise to hold water, but manage for plant health Drain Watertable Planting Harvest Lower water Lower water table for table if needed trafficability for trafficabilityJan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Source: Gary Sands, P.E.
    41. 41. Seasonal Water Table Management Source: Illinois NRCS
    42. 42. Managing the Water Table ISU Research – Crawfordsville, Iowa 0Depth of Drain Outlet LevelBelow Ground Surface (in) 10 Outlet Setting 20 30 40 7 8 9 07 07 07 08 08 08 09 09 09 10 /0 /0 /0 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ /1 /1 /1 1/ 4/ 7/ 1/ 4/ 7/ 1/ 4/ 7/ 1/ 10 10 10 Source: Helmers, Matt. July 2010. Personal Communication
    43. 43. Managing the Water Table ISU Research – Crawfordsville, Iowa 0 Outlet LevelDepth of Drain Outlet LevelBelow Ground Surface (in) Depth to water table mid-way between drains 10 20 30 40 7 8 9 07 07 07 08 08 08 09 09 09 10 /0 /0 /0 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ 1/ /1 /1 /1 1/ 4/ 7/ 1/ 4/ 7/ 1/ 4/ 7/ 1/ 10 10 10 Source: Helmers, Matt. July 2010. Personal Communication
    44. 44. DWM Example of Area ControlledWater Controlstructure set justbelow 1128contour.Shaded areaincludes the areabetween 1128and 1130contours.
    45. 45. Drainage Water ManagementDrainage Water Management - Drain layout at a Minnesota site Source: Agriculture Drainage Management Drainage Coalition; http://www.admcoalition.com/
    46. 46. Drainage Water Management Southeast Iowa Research Drainage water management through controlled or shallow drainage significantly reduced overall drainage by 30 to 40% Nitrate load reduction closely follows the drainage reduction  Implies the nitrate load can be reduced 30-40% Water table response was quick with drawdown to tile depth within 2 to 3 days after significant rain events Source: Helmers, et al. 2010. Water Table Response to Drainage Water Management in Southeast Iowa ASABE Paper No. IDS-CSBE100138. St. Joseph, MI: ASABE.
    47. 47. Wetland-Reservoir-Subirrigation (WRSIS)A WRSIS is a watermanagement system tocollect subsurface drainageand runoff, treat this waterin a constructed wetland,and store the treated waterin a reservoir forsubsequent use forsubirrigation during drierparts of the growingseason. Source: http://www.ars.usda.gov/Research/docs.htm?docid=14999&page=9 Accessed January 18, 2008.
    48. 48. WRSIS BenefitsPotential benefits of this system inlcude:(1) enhanced crop yields,(2) reduced offsite release of nutrients, pesticides, and sediment,(3) additional wetland vegetation and wildlife habitat,(4) more carbon sequestration in soil, and possibly,(5) decreased flooding potential downstream Marsh Foundation WRSIS site in Van Wert Co., Ohio Source: http://www.ars.usda.gov/Research/docs.htm?docid=14999&page=9 Accessed January 18, 2008.
    49. 49. WRSIS Yield BenefitsAs of 2006, at 3 sites, 1996-2006 WRSIS subirrigatedyield increases for corn andsoybeans, respectively,were :30.8% and 26.0% duringdrier growing seasons13.3% and 6.9% during nearaverage to wetter growingseasons Schematic of a WRSIS site in Fulton Co., Ohio18.1% and 13.0% overall. Source: http://www.ars.usda.gov/Research/docs.htm?docid=14999&page=9 Accessed January 18, 2008.
    50. 50. Schematic of nitrogen transformation and retention in a riparian buffer. plant uptake denitrification filtering interflow leaching TileSource: Slide provided by Dan B. Jaynes, USDA-ARS-National Laboratory for Agriculture and the EnvironmentJanuary 2012.
    51. 51. Question: Could reconnecting tile flow to riparian buffers remove substantial amounts of nitrate before it reaches surface waters? Source: Slide provided by Dan B. Jaynes, USDA-ARS-National Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment January 2012.
    52. 52. Induced interflow a) Enhanced uptake b) Enhanced denitrification c) Surface discharge d) Channel slumpingSource: Slide provided by Dan B. Jaynes, USDA-ARS-National Laboratory for Agriculture and the EnvironmentJanuary 2012.
    53. 53. Saturated Buffer Summary•1st year shows re-saturating riparian buffers can removeall the nitrate that is diverted into them.•We were able to divert about 60% of the flow from a tiledraining about 50 ac of field•The cost of the practice is comparable to other Nremoval practices•Practice shows potential of preventing > 11 million lbs ofN from entering IA streams each year•Currently expanding study by re-saturating 3 new sitesin each of IA, IL, and IN (CIG – ADMC).Source: Slide provided by Dan B. Jaynes, USDA-ARS-National Laboratory for Agriculture and the EnvironmentJanuary 2012.
    54. 54. SummaryApproach Nitrate Limitations ReductionNutrient 0 – 15% Most reductions alreadymanagement obtainedNo-till vs. 30 – 50% Acceptanceconventional (C-Sb)No-till vs. ~ 0% No advantageconventional (C-C)Alfalfa/Grass/CRP ~ 90% Economicsvs. row cropRye cover crop > 50% Additional expense, trips Allelopathic effects on corn Timeliness at harvest
    55. 55. Summary (Cont)Approach Nitrate Reduction LimitationsConstructed 37 – 65% TopographyWetlandsBioreactors 10 – 90% Expense More research neededDrain intensity ~15% up to 40% Topography(design) New systems onlyDrainage Water ~ 50% (but maybe not in TopographyManagement Iowa) Seasonal flowSaturated Buffers ~60% (one site, one year) Limited Research
    56. 56. NRCS Financial AssistanceCover Crop Practice Code 340 Crops including grasses, legumes, and forbs planted for seasonal cover and other conservation purposes. EQIP payment rate for 2012 is about $19.99 (oats) to $27.08 (rye) per acre Rates may be higher for historically underserved persons and for initiative projects.
    57. 57. NRCS Financial AssistanceBioreactor Practice Code 747 A structure containing a carbon source (wood chips) to treat subsurface drainage outflow. EQIP payment rate for 2012 is about $4000 each Rates may be higher for historically underserved persons and for initiative projects.
    58. 58. NRCS Financial AssistanceDrainage Water Management Plan Conservation Activity Plan - 130 Plan is completed by a certified Technical Service Provider (TSP) who is paid by the farmer Each plan is for one field Plan includes  A topographic survey of the field  Location of the control structures the controlled zones  Description of when and how to adjust the stop boards EQIP payment rate for 2012 is about $1400 - $1600 per plan Rates may be higher for historically underserved persons and for initiative projects.
    59. 59. NRCS Financial AssistanceStructure for Water Control Practice Code 587 Installation of a water control structure in a drainage system (for example, an Agridrain inline control structure) Payment is for each structure EQIP payment rate for 2012 is about $1000 for a structure 10” or smaller EQIP payment rate for 2012 is about $1400 for a structure 12” or larger Rates may be higher for historically underserved persons and for initiative projects.
    60. 60. NRCS Financial AssistanceDrainage Water Management Practice Code 554 This is the annual management of the control structures in a field with a drainage water management plan Farmer adjusts stop boards and records settings EQIP payment rate for 2012 is about $5.05 per acre Rates may be higher for historically underserved persons and for initiative projects.
    61. 61. Mississippi River BasinHealthy Watersheds Initiative
    62. 62. Mississippi River Basin Healthy Watersheds Initiative 13 state effort $80,000,000 per year for 4 years (authorized) In Iowa there are 13 projects in 6 watersheds  Fiscal year 2010 - $1.35 million for 45 contracts  Fiscal year 2011 - $6 million obligated for 155 contracts
    63. 63. Farm Bill Compliance •When producing an annual agricultural commodity, USDA program participants must apply an approved conservation system that meets the substantial reduction or no substantial increase definitions, (see NFSAM, Part 512, Subpart A, Paragraph 512.01(e).) •To maintain eligibility, participants must also certify that they have not produced crops on converted wetlands after December 23, 1985, and did not convert a wetland after November 28, 1990, to make agricultural production possible. •NRCS will determine whether land contains areas that are classified as a wetland type.Ref: National Food Security Act Manual, Fourth Edition, January 2008. 510.02, 510.12
    64. 64. Wetland Delineation Process (abridged) Producer requests wetland determination via form AD-1026 • Or, NRCS responds to a whistleblower complaint NRCS personnel determine if sampling units in a field , either cropland or non-cropland, meet the definition of wetlands • Hydrophytic vegetation, hydric soils, hydrology The Food Security Act wetland type is determined. If site is altered by drainage, an exemption may be granted. Labels may include: • W – Wetland or NW – Non-wetland • PC – Prior converted cropland • FW – Farmed wetland • FWP – Farmed wetland pasture Farmer is notified of decision and has a right to appeal
    65. 65. Allowable Maintenance ActionsAllowable Maintenance (1) Maintenance or improvement of drainage systems is allowable on all prior converted (PC) cropland as long as adjacent wetlands are not adversely affected. (2) On farmed wetland (FW) and farmed wetland pasture and hayland (FWP), manipulation that exceeds the scope and effect of the original manipulation will result in ineligibility for USDA program benefits. Ref: National Food Security Act Manual, Fourth Edition, January 2008. 516.12
    66. 66. Contact information:Bruce Atherton, P.E.Agricultural EngineerUSDA-NRCS1513 N. Ankeny Blvd., Ste. 3Ankeny, IA 50023-4167Ph: 515-964-1883Fax: 515-964-8613Email: bruce.atherton@ia.usda.govUSDA is an Equal Opportunity Providerand Employer

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