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Carbon Cycle & Ecosystems

This proposal addresses the following Gulf of Mexico Alliance priority issue as outlined in the Governors’ Action Plan for Healthy and Resilient Coasts: Reducing Nutrient Inputs to Coastal Ecosystems. Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) Office of Agricultural Water Policy (OAWP) implements agricultural Best Management Practices (BMPs), which can reduce inputs of agricultural nutrients to surface waters that empty into the Gulf of Mexico. Because adoption of BMPs is voluntary, it is crucial that FDACS personnel be equipped with tools that can effectively communicate the benefits of nutrient management to producers and can assist in selecting the practices appropriate for site-specific conditions. Effective modeling can greatly assist in selecting appropriate programs, which depends on the availability of accurate and up-to-date spatial data, including landscape features, land cover and land use, and soil types. In this project, we propose to enhance NASA’s Coastal On-line Assessment and Synthesis Tool (COAST) as a visual interface for modeling. This will facilitate the ability of end users to encourage agricultural producers to adopt and implement appropriate management practices. The site location for this pilot project is the Lower Suwannee River Basin in Central Florida. The watershed has been subjected to increased use of pesticides and fertilizers, runoff from dairy and poultry farms, and contaminants from pulp mills and phosphate mines. It has experienced large inputs of nitrogen from fertilizers, animal waste and atmospheric deposition. This is a highly collaborative project with partners from a number of stakeholder organizations. We envision the products of this proposal as a prototype that can be adapted for different geographic regions that contribute nutrient inputs to the Gulf of Mexico and the final outcome to be a significant reduction in overall nutrient input delivery to the Gulf.

PI: Katherine Milla/Florida A & M University

103 Perry Paige Building
Center for Water and Air Quality
College of Engineering Sciences, Technology and Agriculture
Florida A&M; University
Tallahassee, FL 32307-4100

Phone: (850) 412-7004

Email: katherine.milla@famu.edu

http://www.famu.edu/cesta/main/index.cfm/faculty-and-staff-pages/katherine-milla/

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Started: Sep 27, 2010

Last Activity: Dec 07, 2010

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