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Contributing understanding of mitigation options for phosphorus and sediment to a review of the efficacy of contemporary agricultural stewardship measures.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date02/2010
JournalAgricultural Systems
Journal number2
Volume103
Number of pages5
Pages105-109
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Experiences from the Mitigation Options for Phosphorus and Sediment (MOPS) projects, which aim to determine the effectiveness of measures to reduce pollutant loading from agricultural land to surface waters, have been used to contribute to the findings of a recent paper (Kay et al., 2009, Agricultural Systems, 99, 67–75), which reviewed the efficacy of contemporary agricultural stewardship measures for ameliorating the water pollution problems of key concern to the UK water industry. MOPS1 is a recently completed 3-year research project on three different soil types in the UK, which focused on mitigation options for winter cereals. MOPS1 demonstrated that tramlines can be the major pathway for sediment and nutrient transfer from arable hillslopes, and that although minimum tillage, crop residue incorporation, contour cultivation, and beetle banks also have potential to be cost-effective mitigation options, tramline management is the one of the most promising treatments for mitigating diffuse pollution losses, as it was able to reduce sediment and nutrient losses by 72–99% in four out of five site years trialled. Using information from the MOPS projects, this paper builds on the findings of Kay et al. to provide an updated picture of the evidence available and the immediate needs for research in this area.