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Location of Turfgrass Production Sites Using GIS in the North Bosque River Watershed

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

Citation:  Pp. 472-476 in Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Environmental Regulations: Proceedings of the March 11-13, 2002 Conference, (Fort Worth, Texas, USA)  701P0102.(doi:10.13031/2013.7598)
Authors:   J. Hanzlik, C. Munster, D. Vietor, R. White
Keywords:   TMDL, Turfgrass, Phosphorus, Dairy, North Bosque River, GIS Composted Manure

The Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission (TNRCC) has issued a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) mandating a 50% reduction of phosphorus (P) in the North Bosque River (Strategic Assessment Division, 2001). There are numerous dairies that produce large quantities of manure in the North Bosque River watershed that will be affected by the TMDL regulation. Currently, the State of Texas is subsidizing the composting of dairy manure for transport out of the watershed. Researchers at Texas A&M University are investigating the environmental effects of using composted dairy manure to grow turfgrass sod. The transport of manure nutrients in turfgrass sod may be a sustainable means to export composted dairy manure from the North Bosque River watershed.

Implementation of turfgrass sod production necessitates identification of acceptable land areas for this use. Such considerations for land use could include soil type, irrigation water availability, property values, topography, identification of urban areas, distance from composting facilities, highway networks and other factors. With these considerations in mind, geographical information system (GIS) software will be used to identify suitable locations for turfgrass operations in or near the North Bosque River watershed. This GIS information can then be used in hydrology simulation models such as the Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) to assess improvements in water quality in the North Bosque River watershed due to the export of manure nutrients in turfgrass sod. This paper will focus on the use of GIS studies to locate turfgrass sod production sites in the North Bosque River watershed to utilize and export composted dairy manure.

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