Improved soil-crop system management aids in NH3 emission mitigation in China

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Sha, Z., Liu, H., Wang, J., Ma, X., Liu, X. and Misselbrook, T. 2021. Improved soil-crop system management aids in NH3 emission mitigation in China. Environmental Pollution. 289 (15 November), p. 117844.

AuthorsSha, Z., Liu, H., Wang, J., Ma, X., Liu, X. and Misselbrook, T.

High ammonia (NH3) emissions from fertilized soil in China have led to various concerns regarding environmental safety and public health. In response to China's blue skies protection campaign, effective NH3 reduction measures need to consider both mitigation efficiency and food security. In this context, we conducted a meta-analysis (including 2980 observations from 447 studies) to select effective measures based on absolute (AV) and yield-scaled (YSAV) NH3 volatilization reduction potential, with the aim of establishing a comprehensive NH3 mitigation framework covering various crop production sectors, and offering a range of potential solutions. The results showed that manipulating crop density, using an intermittent irrigation regime for paddy field rice, applying N as split applications or partially substituting inorganic fertilizer N with organic N sources could achieve reductions in AV and YSAV reduction of 10-20 %; adopting drip irrigation regimes, adding water surface barrier films to paddy fields, or using double inhibitor (urease and nitrification), slow-release or biofertilizers could achieve 20-40 % mitigation; plastic film mulching, applying fertilizer by irrigation or using controlled-release fertilizers could yield 40-60 % reduction; use of a urease inhibitor, fully substituting fertilizer N with organic N, or applying fertilizer by deep placement could decrease AV and YSAV by over 60 %. In addition, use of soil amendments, applying suitable inorganic N sources, or adopting crop rotation, intercropping or a rice-fish production model all had significant benefits to control AV. The adoption of any particular strategy should consider local accessibility and affordability, direct intervention by local/government authorities and demonstration to encourage the uptake of technologies and practices, particularly in NH3 pollution hotspot areas. Together, this could ensure food security and environmental sustainability.

KeywordsNH3 volatilization; Mitigation options; Enhanced-efficiency fertilizer
Year of Publication2021
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Journal citation289 (15 November), p. 117844
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Open accessPublished as non-open access
FunderBBSRC Newton funding
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Funder project or codeBB/NO22408/1
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
OnlineSep 2021
PublisherElsevier Sci Ltd

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