EDMONTON, April 8, 2014 /CNW/ - The Alberta Research and Extension Council of Alberta (ARECA) and the Canadian Fertilizer Institute (CFI) have signed a 4R Nutrient Stewardship Memorandum of Understanding. The goal of the agreement is to link ARECA's objectives for economic and environmental performance through research, knowledge and capacity building and extension activities with the 4R Nutrient Stewardship programming developed by Canada's fertilizer industry.
The 4R Nutrient Stewardship system: Right Source @ Right Rate, Right Time, Right Place® has been established in cooperation with government, researchers, customers, and the public. This approach ensures that nutrients are applied using the right source at the right rate, time and place through the adoption of Best Management Practices (BMPs) by producers to achieve economic, social and environmental sustainability. A recent George Morris Institute study showed that implementation of these practices can result in benefits of up to $87 an acre.
"This agreement will take advantage of the excellent applied research capabilities of ARECA," said Clyde Graham, Vice President of Strategy and Alliances at CFI. "Their work towards improving agricultural practices for long-term economic and environmental sustainability goals aligns perfectly with the 4R Nutrient Stewardship framework."
To assist in achieving the goals of the MOU, ARECA will provide support and access to applied research plots to pilot innovative nutrient stewardship practices, including the development of detailed 4R Nutrient Stewardship plans and testing of the requirements for implementation the Nitrous Oxide Emission Reduction Protocol (NERP) in Alberta. Implementation of the 4R program can result in a 15 to 25 per cent decrease in N2O (nitrous oxide) emissions.
"We are excited by the possibilities this agreement brings. The 4R program is a great fit with our research, and we are looking forward to working with CFI," said Jim Ludwig, Manager Rep for Mackenzie Applied Research Association, member organization of ARECA.
This research collaboration provides an opportunity to advance ARECA's Environmentally Sustainable Agriculture Initiative Program shows a firm commitment from ARECA towards improving Alberta's Environmental Farm Plan.
The MOU builds upon CFI's leadership under the Farming 4R Land program. CFI is currently undertaking a strategic program for greenhouse gas reduction and nutrient stewardship in Alberta. Farming 4R Land is building a unique network of farmers, scientists, fertilizer and agri-business industry leaders, conservation experts, and governments. The project is bringing knowledge of improved fertilizer practices into use on Alberta farms through collaboration and sharing of BMPs based on 4R Nutrient Stewardship and NERP for associated greenhouse gas offset reductions. This project is funded through the Biological GHG Management Program, administered by Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions (AIBIO) with funding from the Climate Change and Emissions Management (CCEMC) Corporation.
The Canadian Fertilizer Institute is an industry association representing manufacturers, wholesale and retail distributors of nitrogen, phosphate, potash and sulphur fertilizers. Our mission is to be the unified voice of the Canadian fertilizer industry by promoting the responsible, sustainable and safe production, distribution and use of fertilizers. Our industry employs 12,000 Canadians and contributes $12 billion annually to Canada's economy. Our products contribute to the supply of safe, nutritious food in Canada and around the world.
The Agricultural Research and Extension Council of Alberta is a provincial association of non-profit producer groups dedicated to enhancing the sustainability and profitability of agriculture in Alberta. It is provincial in scope, funded by government and stakeholders, and a key provider of unbiased applied research related to agri-environmental issues for Alberta producers.
SOURCE: Canadian Fertilizer Institute
For further information: Cassandra Cotton, Canadian Fertilizer Institute, firstname.lastname@example.org, (613) 762-8178