Iowa Learning Farms Webinar: Watershed-Scale N-Load Model Update

Presentation to feature Iowa State water quality expert on revisions to the N-Load Model

July 19, 2022, 12:03 pm | Kay Stefanik

AMES, Iowa – A water quality expert at Iowa State University will discuss recent revisions to the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy N-Load model, to enable direct comparisons of modeled estimates with U.S. Geological Survey water quality data collected at the watershed scale.

Kay Stefanik, assistant director of the Iowa Nutrient Research Center at Iowa State, will present “Improving Flexibility of the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy N-Load Model: Use at the Watershed Scale,” during a July 27 conservation webinar hosted by Iowa Learning Farms.

Iowa USGS water quality gauges map.Stefanik’s expertise and research is in water quality, nutrient cycling and aquatic ecosystems. In her work with water quality initiatives through the INRC, she has been directly involved in assessing progress toward Iowa’s nutrient reduction goals.

Iowa Learning Farms is an Iowa State University Extension and Outreach conservation and water quality education program.

Stefanik will also highlight uses of the N-Load model including estimation of watershed scale nitrate-N loss. In addition, Stefanik will cover opportunities to forecast future nitrate-N reductions enabled through increased practice implementation such as use of cover crops, conversion to no-till, changes in manure and fertilizer use and installation of edge-of-field practices.

“The INRS N-Load model was developed to estimate nitrate-N loss to surface waters on a Major Land Resource Area scale, which is not readily comparable to USGS water quality data that is commonly published in relation to watershed areas,” said Stefanik. “The revision of the N-Load model at the watershed scale aids in the development of more targeted watershed approaches to nutrient management for nitrate reductions.”

Participants in Iowa Learning Farms Conservation Webinars are encouraged to ask questions of the presenters. People from all backgrounds and areas of interest are encouraged to join.

Webinar access instructions

To participate in the live webinar, shortly before noon CDT July 27:

The webinar will also be recorded and archived on the ILF website, so that it can be watched at any time.

A Certified Crop Adviser board-approved continuing education unit has been applied for. Those who participate in the live webinar are eligible. Information about how to apply to receive the CEU will be provided at the end of the live webinar.

Upcoming webinars in the series

  • Aug. 3: Michael Burchell, North Carolina State University.
  • Aug. 10: Daniel Andersen, Iowa State University.
  • Aug. 17: Jorgen Rose, Practical Farmers of Iowa.
  • Aug. 24: Peter O'Brien, USDA Agriculture Research Service.
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