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Crop yield and greenhouse gas responses to stover harvest on glacial till Mollisol

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Producing clean renewable energy and reducing climate change are important and interrelated issues. Corn stover is targeted as a potential non-food bioenergy feedstock, especially in the Midwest United States. Crop residue management impacts soil water and temperature dynamics, which in turn can impact many soil processes. Stover harvest is expected to reduce soil cover and has the potential to reduce crop yield and impact carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrous oxide (N2O) emission. Corn and soybean were grown from 2005 to 2009 in rotation on plots managed without tillage. After corn grain harvest, stover was harvested from 0 of 8 (0%), 4 of 8 (50%), 6 of 8 (75%) and 8 of 8 (100%) rows using a forage harvester with a 76-cm swath. All soybean stubble was returned to the field. Two cycles of stover harvest did not reduce corn or soybean yield or alter CO2 or N2O emission. Thus, these results suggest that harvesting residue will not influence CO2 or N2O emission in the field.
Johnson, Jane M.F. , Barbour, Nancy W.
Includes references
The Congress], 2010.
Journal Articles, USDA Authors, Peer-Reviewed
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