Application Risk Advisory System
M.L. 2013: (d) $1,500,000 the first year and $1,500,000 the second year are for research, pilot projects, and technical assistance on proper implementation of best management practices and more precise information on nonpoint contributions to impaired waters. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2018.
After this system is developed and deployed, we plan to track the number of Minnesota farmers and crop advisers that use it when applying manure and other nitrogen fertilizer products.
This system is currently under development
The Application Risk Advisory System is web‑based and provides alerts when conditions are favorable for nutrient loss to water, based on soil conditions and National Weather Service forecast models. This system enables farmers and commercial applicators to avoid applications of fertilizer and manure during conditions when the potential for loss to surface water is high.
The Application Risk Advisory System is similar to a system developed by Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection and the University of Wisconsin‑Madison (http://gis.soils.wisc.edu/app/runoffrisk). It is anticipated that, like what is occurring in Wisconsin, risk alerts will be picked up and communicated via radio, print, and social media.
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is working with regional partners to develop a coordinated system in multiple states. This project is led by the National Weather Service (NWS). They created a YouTube video (https://youtu.be/FAOLSjtRFZo) to describe this effort, discussion of the "application risk tool" begins at the 2:30 minute mark.
The Application Risk Advisory System also integrates and enhances the MDA’s existing Six‑Inch Soil Temperature Network (www.mda.state.mn.us/soiltemp) to provide better spatial presentation of soil temperature for guiding fall anhydrous ammonia application. This enables applicators to follow the BMP of waiting for soils to cool to 50º F in the fall before applying anhydrous to reduce losses of nitrate to water.