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Groundwater nitrate reduction processes in a riparian buffer enrolled in the NC Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org

Citation:  2010 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, June 20 - June 23, 2010  1009119.(doi:10.13031/2013.29893)
Authors:   Jacob D Wiseman, Michael R Burchell II, Tiffany L Messer, Amey S Tilak
Keywords:   Riparian Buffer, CREP, groundwater mixing

In an effort to maximize water quality benefits of buffers enrolled in the NC Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, several buffers were monitored for nitrate in groundwater and in the protected stream. One buffer monitored was located in the upper coastal plain of North Carolina. This buffer averaged 50 meters wide and consisted of 3 zones; a hardwood buffer near the stream, a wide loblolly pine zone, and a grassed zone at the field/buffer interface. Poultry litter was applied by the landowner to a pasture upslope from the grass buffer. Three blocks of groundwater wells, each containing three transects, were installed at shallow depths (1.5-2 m) and deep depths (2.5-3.0 m) and have been monitored for nutrients since 2005. Stream surface water samples were also collected at three points inside the buffer during this time. In June 2008, groundwater wells with depths ranging from 4.2-9.6 m were also installed in the upland and within each block.

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