Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 552054
Title Nitrogen Surplus Benchmarks for Controlling N Pollution in the Main Cropping Systems of China
Author(s) Zhang, Chong; Ju, Xiaotang; Powlson, David; Oenema, Oene; Smith, Pete
Source Environmental Science and Technology 53 (2019)12. - ISSN 0013-936X - p. 6678 - 6687.
Department(s) Sustainable Soil Use
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2019

Nitrogen (N) surplus is a useful indicator for improving agricultural N management and controlling N pollution. Few studies have developed benchmark values for cropping systems in China, a country with the largest N fertilizer use in the world. We established N surplus benchmarks for 13 main cropping systems, at optimal N management, using results from >4500 on-farm field experiments and a soil surface balance approach. These cropping systems accounted for about 50% of total N fertilizer consumption in Chinese agriculture in 2009. The results showed that N surplus benchmarks for single cropping systems ranged from 40 to 100 kg N ha-1 yr-1 (average 73 kg N ha-1 yr-1), and for double cropping systems from 110 to 190 kg N ha-1 yr-1 (average 160 kg N ha-1 yr-1), roughly twice that of single cropping systems. These N surplus benchmarks may be further refined, following further decreases in N deposition rates and reactive N losses as a result of strict implementation of "4R-nutrient stewardship" and improvements in fertilization techniques and agronomic managements. Our N surplus benchmarks could serve as realistic targets to improve the N management of current conventional practices, and thereby could lay the foundations for a more sustainable N management in China.

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