Investigating whether current fertiliser and effluent guidelines and policy are strong enough to prevent phosphorus loss
Project Details Ngā taipitopito
Adding phosphorus to New Zealand’s soils can help grow plants – but unfortunately it does the same thing in our water.
Intensive pastoral agriculture in New Zealand has expanded into areas at high risk of phosphorus entering freshwater, such as land with a moderate to high slope, regular and frequent rainfall, or with soil that has a low capacity to absorb phosphorus.
This research investigated whether current practice and policy for fertiliser and farm dairy effluent (FDE) application are sufficient to minimise phosphorus loss. The research also explored the factors affecting phosphorus loss after the application of fertilisers.
A key global challenge is to meet rising worldwide food demand while protecting water and managing uncertainty around potential future phosphorus price or supply shocks. Research contributed to by this team has compared approaches to phosphorus mitigation and policy in New Zealand and overseas. It forms part of a global effort to understand how to improve efficiency, facilitate change, incentivise phosphorus recovery, and conserve phosphate rock reserves.