Managing Agricultural Nitrogen forum June 12, Sacramento
Time: 7:30 a.m. to noon, with an optional Farm and Research Tour from 1-5 p.m. Please allow enough time to go sign in and obtain a name badge at the security desk.
Location: Sacramento CDFA Main Auditorium, 1220 N Street, Sacramento 95814. Check here for map and directions
Parking: Parking garage on 12th between O and P Street
Sponsored by: UC ANR California Institute for Water Resources (CIWR) and CDFA Fertilizer Research and Education Program (FREP)
7:30 a.m. - Registration: Coffee and Refreshments
8 - Welcome and Introduction - Bill Frost, Associate Director of Cooperative Extension and the Agricultural Experiment Station (invited)
8:15 - Nitrogen in Agriculture - Moderator: Doug Parker, Director, California Institute for Water Resources, UC Agriculture and Natural Resources
- Nitrogen Cycle/Managing Organic Nitrogen from Animal Operations - Stuart Pettygrove, UC Cooperative Extension Specialist in the Dept. of Land, Air, and Water Resources at UC Davis
- Managing Inorganic Nitrogen from Synthetic Fertilizer - Tim Hartz, UC Cooperative Extension Specialist in the Dept. of Plant Sciences at UC Davis
- Managing Water - Larry Schwankl, UC Cooperative Extension Specialist in the Dept. of Land, Air, and Water Resources at UC Davis
- Managing Groundwater/Pump and Fertilizer - Thomas Harter, UC Cooperative Extension Specialist in the Dept. of Land, Air, and Water Resources at UC Davis
9:30 - Implementing Management Options (A) - Industry Programs
- Paul Martin, Western United Dairymen
- Roberta Firoved, California Rice Commission
- Bob Curtis, Almond Board of California
10:30 Implementing Management Options (B) - State and Regional Programs
- Asif Maan, California Dept. of Food & Agriculture, Fertilizer Research and Education Program (FREP)
- Rob Mikkelsen, International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI)
11 - Policy and Implementation - panel discussion
- Doug Parker, California Institute for Water Resources, UC Agriculture and Natural Resources
- Johnny Gonzalez, State Water Resources Control Board
- Danny Merkley, California Farm Bureau
Noon - Adjourn
12:30 p.m. – 5 p.m. - Optional Farm and Research Tour (must preregister). Lunch will be provided to those registered for the tour.
Forums Planned for June 2012
June 12 at the CDFA Main Auditorium, Sacramento
June 18 at the UC Cooperative Extension Office, Tulare
Who should attend?
Growers, dairy operators, agency representatives, agricultural commissioners, policymakers and other concerned community members. The events are free and open to the public. Preregistration is required.
Objective is to:
- Provide an educational forum on nitrogen use and management in agriculture
- Discuss management of agricultural nitrogen and gain an understanding of how management of agricultural nitrogen is proceeding
- Discuss the role of policy in nitrogen management
- Explore solutions to nitrate in groundwater
- Explore the need for additional research and education
UC Cooperative Extension specialists will describe methods of managing nitrogen on dairies and cropland. Members of the agricultural industry and representatives of statewide and regional programs will discuss the practical aspects of adopting nitrogen management practices. To wrap up the sessions, Parker will present a case study on the effects of policy on nutrient management in the Chesapeake Bay region in the Northeast and lead a discussion of the role of policy in nitrogen management in California.
The report “Addressing Nitrate in California’s Drinking Water” released in March by the State Water Resources Control Board concluded that more than 90 percent of human-generated nitrate contamination of groundwater in the Tulare Lake Basin and the Monterey County portion of the Salinas Valley has come from agricultural activity.
Plants need nitrogen to grow, but nutrients that are not used by the crop may move below the root zone. Nitrate, a byproduct of nitrogen, may infiltrate to groundwater.
“The report found that farmers have already begun employing numerous techniques to reduce the amount of nitrogen fertilizer available in the soil,” said Doug Parker, director of the California Institute for Water Resources and leader for the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources water strategic initiative. “At the forums, we will be discussing how those efforts are proceeding and exploring additional solutions to protect groundwater quality. We’ll be asking the agricultural community what additional research and education they need from UC.”