2019-08-29T10:19:39 q75

Estimating nitrogen losses from furrow irrigated cotton rotation systems

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Cotton is one of many agricultural industries heavily reliant on nitrogenous fertilizers and water storages to maintain high levels of production. Cotton-based farming systems are therefore labelled as potentially high-risk agricultural systems with respect to gases losses of nitrogen to the atmosphere, nitrate leaching which contribute to environmental pollution. The inefficient use of fertiliser applied nitrogen also reduces profitability. Irrigated cotton grown on alkaline grey clay soils often use nitrogen fertilizer inefficiently, due largely to nitrogen loss (commonly 50 - 100 kg N ha-1) through denitrification. These and the heavier black clays (Vertosols) are the dominant soils in the cotton growing region of Australia and with their high water holding capacity are ideal environments for denitrification and associated losses of nitrous oxide (N2O) and N2. The nitrogen gases emitted also include ammonia, but it is N2O, a potent greenhouse gas with a Global Warming Potential (GWP) approximately 300 times that of carbon dioxide (CO2), which has fuelled debate. Field measurements using a portable automated gas analysis system were carried out on a typical furrow irrigated cotton farm near Dalby on Queenslands Darling Downs over the 2005/06 season. The impact of water run applications of fertiliser N on emissions were examined with half (three) the chambers placed within the irrigation furrow and the remaining three (with 50 cm extentions) placed over growing plants in the row .

Access rights

Terms of use for the data to be determined through negotiation with the primary contact. To arrange access to this data contact the primary contact.

Geographical area of data collection

northlimit=-26.625; southlimit=-28.5; westlimit=150.5; eastLimit=152.625; projection=WGS84


Van Zwieten, Lukas, Kimber, Stephen, Morris, S., Downie, Adriana, Berger, E., Rust, Josh, & Scheer, Clemens (2010) Influence of biochars on flux of N2O and CO2 from Ferrosol. Australian Journal of Soil Research, 48(6 - 7), pp. 555-568. http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/SR10004
Grace, Peter, Rowlings, David, Rochester, Ian, Kiese, Ralf, & Butterbach-Bahl, Klaus (2010) Nitrous oxide emissions from irrigated cotton soils of northern Australia. In Gilkes, R & Prakongkep, N (Eds.) Soil Solutions for a Changing World: proceedings of the 19th World Congress of Soil Science, 1 - 6 August 2010, Australia. http://eprints.qut.edu.au/37658/

Research areas

furrow irrigated
Earth sciences
Atmospheric sciences

Cite this collection

Rowlings, D. and Grace, P. (2006). Estimating nitrogen losses from furrow irrigated cotton rotation systems. Institute for Sustainable Resources, Queensland University of Technology. Rowlings.32.3
Rowlings, David; grace, Peter (2010): Estimating nitrogen losses from furrow irrigated cotton rotation systems. Queensland University of Technology. (Dataset) https://doi.org/10.4225/09/585c723814b02

Data file types

Ecological Metadata Language (EML) File .xml



Dates of data collection

From 2005-10-18 to 2006-04-16


Is supported by
Metacat  (Equipment)


Name: Professor Peter Grace
Phone: +61 7 3138 9283


Date record created:
Date record modified:
Record status:
Published - Open Access