Soil nitrous oxide emissions in corn following three decades of tillage and rotation treatments
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This study compares tillage and rotation practices on the amount of nitrous oxide emissions released into the atmosphere. The objectives were to assess long-term tillage (chisel, moldboard plow, and no-till), rotation (continuous corn and corn-soybean), and interaction effects of tillage and rotation on the environment. This study found that when the ground is tilled, the soil and residue mix together, which breaks down organic carbon in the soil and increases the amount of nitrogen released into the air. Overall, emissions under no-till were much lower than both chisel and moldboard plow tillage, and rotating corn reduced nitrous oxide emissions by 20% compared to continuous corn. Therefore, integrating no-till and rotation into farming practices could help fix nitrogen in the soil and reduce the amount of harmful gasses released into the atmosphere as a result of crop production.