Using a Crop Modeling Framework for Precision Cost-Benefit Analysis of Variable Seeding and Nitrogen Application Rates

dc.contributor.author McNunn, Gabriel
dc.contributor.author Licht, Mark
dc.contributor.author Heaton, Emily
dc.contributor.author Archontoulis, Sotirios
dc.contributor.author VanLoocke, Andy
dc.contributor.department Agronomy
dc.date 2019-12-09T15:26:35.000
dc.date.accessioned 2020-06-29T23:06:33Z
dc.date.available 2020-06-29T23:06:33Z
dc.date.copyright Tue Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2019
dc.date.issued 2019-12-01
dc.description.abstract <p>A key goal of precision agriculture is to achieve the maximum crop yield while minimizing inputs and loses from cropping systems. The challenge for precision agriculture is that these factors interact with one another on a subfield scale. Seeding density and nitrogen (N) fertilizer application rates are two of the most important inputs influencing agronomic, economic and environmental outcomes in cropping systems including yield, return on investment (ROI), and nitrate (NO3−) leaching. Here a cropping system model framework is used to predict site-specific subfield optimum seeding density and (N) fertilizer application rates based on publicly available data sources. The framework is used estimate differences in yield, ROI, NO3− leaching, and N2O emissions corresponding with economic optimum (maximum ROI) and agronomic optimum (maximum yield) inputs. The framework couples the process-based APSIM cropping system model with the SSURGO soils database, Daymet weather data service, land grant university estimates of crop production costs and commodity price estimates, and the R statistics software. Framework performance was evaluated using multiple years of precision yield monitor data obtained from a conventionally managed continuous maize (<em>Zea mays</em> L.) cropping system field located in north central Iowa on which varying N-fertilizer rates were applied. Subfield model estimates of crop yield were sensitive to initial conditions related to historical management of the field and had an <em>r</em>2 = 0.65 and a root mean square error of 1645.0 kg ha−1. A site-specific application of the framework comparing economic optimum seeding density and N-fertilizer rates with agronomic optimum values estimated an average ROI benefit of 7.2% as well as an average NO3− leaching and N2O emissions reductions of 2.5 and 7.6 kg ha−1, respectively. However, in a minority of cases NO3− leaching was greater at the economic optimum, indicating that managing to maximize ROI rather than yield may not always reduce environmental impacts. Our results suggest that managing cropping systems for the economic optimum is plausible using publicly available data with our framework and will likely lead to improved environmental outcomes.</p>
dc.description.comments <p>This article is published as McNunn G, Heaton E, Archontoulis S, Licht M and VanLoocke A (2019) Using a Crop Modeling Framework for Precision Cost-Benefit Analysis of Variable Seeding and Nitrogen Application Rates. Front. Sustain. Food Syst. 3:108. doi: <a href="https://doi.org/10.3389/fsufs.2019.00108">10.3389/fsufs.2019.00108</a>.</p>
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.identifier archive/lib.dr.iastate.edu/agron_pubs/610/
dc.identifier.articleid 1659
dc.identifier.contextkey 15955305
dc.identifier.s3bucket isulib-bepress-aws-west
dc.identifier.submissionpath agron_pubs/610
dc.identifier.uri https://dr.lib.iastate.edu/handle/20.500.12876/4981
dc.language.iso en
dc.source.bitstream archive/lib.dr.iastate.edu/agron_pubs/610/2019_Heaton_UsingCrop.pdf|||Sat Jan 15 01:16:32 UTC 2022
dc.source.uri 10.3389/fsufs.2019.00108
dc.subject.disciplines Agricultural and Resource Economics
dc.subject.disciplines Agriculture
dc.subject.disciplines Agronomy and Crop Sciences
dc.subject.disciplines Environmental Studies
dc.subject.keywords economic optimum nitrogen
dc.subject.keywords economic optimum seeding
dc.subject.keywords nitrate leaching
dc.subject.keywords APSIM
dc.subject.keywords model framework
dc.title Using a Crop Modeling Framework for Precision Cost-Benefit Analysis of Variable Seeding and Nitrogen Application Rates
dc.type article
dc.type.genre article
dspace.entity.type Publication
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