Enhanced-efficiency fertilizer impacts on yield-scaled nitrous oxide emissions in maize

Rebecca F. Graham, Kristin D. Greer, Maria Bonita Villamil, Emerson D. Nafziger, Cameron M Pittelkow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Balancing efforts to mitigate nitrous oxide (N 2 O) emissions from crop production while increasing grain yields is an important challenge for agriculture. The objectives of this study were to assess N 2 O emissions, soil inorganic nitrogen (N) concentrations, grain yield, and grain N content for three enhanced-efficiency nitrogen fertilizers (EENFs) compared with anhydrous ammonia in a rainfed corn system in Illinois over 3 yr (2015–2017). Treatments included a control (check) and four N sources applied at 202 kg N ha -1 : injected anhydrous ammonia, stabilized urea containing urease and nitrification inhibitors (SuperU, Agrotain International), polymer-coated urea (ESN, Agrium Advanced Technologies), and injected urea-ammonium nitrate (UAN) + nitrapyrin. Significant reductions in N 2 O emissions were observed for several EENFs compared with anhydrous ammonia, but results were not consistent across treatments and years. SuperU reduced area- and yield-scaled N 2 O emissions in two of three study years compared with anhydrous ammonia, while ESN had no N 2 O mitigation benefit. Injected UAN + nitrapyrin had the highest emissions in the first year but significantly decreased emissions in the second 2 yr. No treatment significantly improved yield or grain N content compared with anhydrous ammonia. In light of efforts to broadly promote EENFs in the US Midwest, these results demonstrate there is some promise for N 2 O mitigation, but the lack of clear crop productivity benefits combined with inconsistent N 2 O mitigation effects do not support the conclusion that EENFs inherently improve agronomic and environmental outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1469-1481
Number of pages13
JournalSoil Science Society of America Journal
Volume82
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 25 2018

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anhydrous ammonia
nitrous oxide
ammonia
maize
urea
fertilizer
fertilizers
corn
nitrogen fertilizers
nitrapyrin
mitigation
nitrogen
urea ammonium nitrate
ammonium nitrate
grain yield
soil emission
urease inhibitors
advanced technology
inorganic nitrogen
nitrification inhibitors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Soil Science

Cite this

Enhanced-efficiency fertilizer impacts on yield-scaled nitrous oxide emissions in maize. / Graham, Rebecca F.; Greer, Kristin D.; Villamil, Maria Bonita; Nafziger, Emerson D.; Pittelkow, Cameron M.

In: Soil Science Society of America Journal, Vol. 82, No. 6, 25.10.2018, p. 1469-1481.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Graham, Rebecca F. ; Greer, Kristin D. ; Villamil, Maria Bonita ; Nafziger, Emerson D. ; Pittelkow, Cameron M. / Enhanced-efficiency fertilizer impacts on yield-scaled nitrous oxide emissions in maize. In: Soil Science Society of America Journal. 2018 ; Vol. 82, No. 6. pp. 1469-1481.
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