Benefits and trade-offs of replacing synthetic fertilizers by animal manures in crop production in China: A meta-analysis

Xiaoying Zhang, Qunchao Fang, Tao Zhang, Wenqi Ma, Gerard L. Velthof, Yong Hou*, Oene Oenema, Fusuo Zhang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Recycling of livestock manure to agricultural land may reduce the use of synthetic fertilizer and thereby enhance the sustainability of food production. However, the effects of substitution of fertilizer by manure on crop yield, nitrogen use efficiency (NUE), and emissions of ammonia (NH3), nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4) as function of soil and manure properties, experimental duration and application strategies have not been quantified systematically and convincingly yet. Here, we present a meta-analysis of these effects using results of 143 published studies in China. Results indicate that the partial substitution of synthetic fertilizers by manure significantly increased the yield by 6.6% and 3.3% for upland crop and paddy rice, respectively, but full substitution significantly decreased yields (by 9.6% and 4.1%). The response of crop yields to manure substitution varied with soil pH and experimental durations, with relatively large positive responses in acidic soils and long-term experiments. NUE increased significantly at a moderate ratio (<40%) of substitution. NH3 emissions were significantly lower with full substitution (62%–77%), but not with partial substitution. Emissions of CH4 from paddy rice significantly increased with substitution ratio (SR), and varied by application rates and manure types, but N2O emissions decreased. The SR did not significantly influence N2O emissions from upland soils, and a relative scarcity of data on certain manure characteristic was found to hamper identification of the mechanisms. We derived overall mean N2O emission factors (EF) of 0.56% and 0.17%, as well as NH3 EFs of 11.1% and 6.5% for the manure N applied to upland and paddy soils, respectively. Our study shows that partial substitution of fertilizer by manure can increase crop yields, and decrease emissions of NH3 and N2O, but depending on site-specific conditions. Manure addition to paddy rice soils is recommended only if abatement strategies for CH4 emissions are also implemented.

Original languageEnglish
JournalGlobal Change Biology
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 8 Sep 2019

Fingerprint

Manures
Fertilizers
meta-analysis
crop production
Crops
manure
Animals
substitution
Substitution reactions
fertilizer
Soils
crop yield
rice
soil
Nitrogen
nitrogen
Methane
Nitrous Oxide
food production
nitrous oxide

Keywords

  • ammonia emissions
  • crop yield
  • fertilizers
  • greenhouse gases
  • livestock manure
  • meta-analysis
  • soil type
  • trade-offs

Cite this

@article{0b110293d8274ac08318797596bb45d3,
title = "Benefits and trade-offs of replacing synthetic fertilizers by animal manures in crop production in China: A meta-analysis",
abstract = "Recycling of livestock manure to agricultural land may reduce the use of synthetic fertilizer and thereby enhance the sustainability of food production. However, the effects of substitution of fertilizer by manure on crop yield, nitrogen use efficiency (NUE), and emissions of ammonia (NH3), nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4) as function of soil and manure properties, experimental duration and application strategies have not been quantified systematically and convincingly yet. Here, we present a meta-analysis of these effects using results of 143 published studies in China. Results indicate that the partial substitution of synthetic fertilizers by manure significantly increased the yield by 6.6{\%} and 3.3{\%} for upland crop and paddy rice, respectively, but full substitution significantly decreased yields (by 9.6{\%} and 4.1{\%}). The response of crop yields to manure substitution varied with soil pH and experimental durations, with relatively large positive responses in acidic soils and long-term experiments. NUE increased significantly at a moderate ratio (<40{\%}) of substitution. NH3 emissions were significantly lower with full substitution (62{\%}–77{\%}), but not with partial substitution. Emissions of CH4 from paddy rice significantly increased with substitution ratio (SR), and varied by application rates and manure types, but N2O emissions decreased. The SR did not significantly influence N2O emissions from upland soils, and a relative scarcity of data on certain manure characteristic was found to hamper identification of the mechanisms. We derived overall mean N2O emission factors (EF) of 0.56{\%} and 0.17{\%}, as well as NH3 EFs of 11.1{\%} and 6.5{\%} for the manure N applied to upland and paddy soils, respectively. Our study shows that partial substitution of fertilizer by manure can increase crop yields, and decrease emissions of NH3 and N2O, but depending on site-specific conditions. Manure addition to paddy rice soils is recommended only if abatement strategies for CH4 emissions are also implemented.",
keywords = "ammonia emissions, crop yield, fertilizers, greenhouse gases, livestock manure, meta-analysis, soil type, trade-offs",
author = "Xiaoying Zhang and Qunchao Fang and Tao Zhang and Wenqi Ma and Velthof, {Gerard L.} and Yong Hou and Oene Oenema and Fusuo Zhang",
year = "2019",
month = "9",
day = "8",
doi = "10.1111/gcb.14826",
language = "English",
journal = "Global Change Biology",
issn = "1354-1013",
publisher = "Wiley",

}

Benefits and trade-offs of replacing synthetic fertilizers by animal manures in crop production in China: A meta-analysis. / Zhang, Xiaoying; Fang, Qunchao; Zhang, Tao; Ma, Wenqi; Velthof, Gerard L.; Hou, Yong; Oenema, Oene; Zhang, Fusuo.

In: Global Change Biology, 08.09.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Benefits and trade-offs of replacing synthetic fertilizers by animal manures in crop production in China: A meta-analysis

AU - Zhang, Xiaoying

AU - Fang, Qunchao

AU - Zhang, Tao

AU - Ma, Wenqi

AU - Velthof, Gerard L.

AU - Hou, Yong

AU - Oenema, Oene

AU - Zhang, Fusuo

PY - 2019/9/8

Y1 - 2019/9/8

N2 - Recycling of livestock manure to agricultural land may reduce the use of synthetic fertilizer and thereby enhance the sustainability of food production. However, the effects of substitution of fertilizer by manure on crop yield, nitrogen use efficiency (NUE), and emissions of ammonia (NH3), nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4) as function of soil and manure properties, experimental duration and application strategies have not been quantified systematically and convincingly yet. Here, we present a meta-analysis of these effects using results of 143 published studies in China. Results indicate that the partial substitution of synthetic fertilizers by manure significantly increased the yield by 6.6% and 3.3% for upland crop and paddy rice, respectively, but full substitution significantly decreased yields (by 9.6% and 4.1%). The response of crop yields to manure substitution varied with soil pH and experimental durations, with relatively large positive responses in acidic soils and long-term experiments. NUE increased significantly at a moderate ratio (<40%) of substitution. NH3 emissions were significantly lower with full substitution (62%–77%), but not with partial substitution. Emissions of CH4 from paddy rice significantly increased with substitution ratio (SR), and varied by application rates and manure types, but N2O emissions decreased. The SR did not significantly influence N2O emissions from upland soils, and a relative scarcity of data on certain manure characteristic was found to hamper identification of the mechanisms. We derived overall mean N2O emission factors (EF) of 0.56% and 0.17%, as well as NH3 EFs of 11.1% and 6.5% for the manure N applied to upland and paddy soils, respectively. Our study shows that partial substitution of fertilizer by manure can increase crop yields, and decrease emissions of NH3 and N2O, but depending on site-specific conditions. Manure addition to paddy rice soils is recommended only if abatement strategies for CH4 emissions are also implemented.

AB - Recycling of livestock manure to agricultural land may reduce the use of synthetic fertilizer and thereby enhance the sustainability of food production. However, the effects of substitution of fertilizer by manure on crop yield, nitrogen use efficiency (NUE), and emissions of ammonia (NH3), nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4) as function of soil and manure properties, experimental duration and application strategies have not been quantified systematically and convincingly yet. Here, we present a meta-analysis of these effects using results of 143 published studies in China. Results indicate that the partial substitution of synthetic fertilizers by manure significantly increased the yield by 6.6% and 3.3% for upland crop and paddy rice, respectively, but full substitution significantly decreased yields (by 9.6% and 4.1%). The response of crop yields to manure substitution varied with soil pH and experimental durations, with relatively large positive responses in acidic soils and long-term experiments. NUE increased significantly at a moderate ratio (<40%) of substitution. NH3 emissions were significantly lower with full substitution (62%–77%), but not with partial substitution. Emissions of CH4 from paddy rice significantly increased with substitution ratio (SR), and varied by application rates and manure types, but N2O emissions decreased. The SR did not significantly influence N2O emissions from upland soils, and a relative scarcity of data on certain manure characteristic was found to hamper identification of the mechanisms. We derived overall mean N2O emission factors (EF) of 0.56% and 0.17%, as well as NH3 EFs of 11.1% and 6.5% for the manure N applied to upland and paddy soils, respectively. Our study shows that partial substitution of fertilizer by manure can increase crop yields, and decrease emissions of NH3 and N2O, but depending on site-specific conditions. Manure addition to paddy rice soils is recommended only if abatement strategies for CH4 emissions are also implemented.

KW - ammonia emissions

KW - crop yield

KW - fertilizers

KW - greenhouse gases

KW - livestock manure

KW - meta-analysis

KW - soil type

KW - trade-offs

U2 - 10.1111/gcb.14826

DO - 10.1111/gcb.14826

M3 - Article

JO - Global Change Biology

JF - Global Change Biology

SN - 1354-1013

ER -