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Effects of Three Types of Organic Fertilizers on Greenhouse Gas Emissions in a Grassland on Andosol in Southern Hokkaido, Japan

  • Kitamura, Ryosuke1
  • Sugiyama, Chiho1
  • Yasuda, Kaho1
  • Nagatake, Arata1
  • Yuan, Yiran1
  • Du, Jing1
  • Yamaki, Norikazu2
  • Taira, Katsuro2
  • Kawai, Masahito3
  • Hatano, Ryusuke1
  • 1 Graduate School of Agriculture, Hokkaido University, Sapporo , (Japan)
  • 2 Experiment Farm, Feld Science Center for Northern Biosphere, Hokkaido University, Sapporo , (Japan)
  • 3 Shizunai Livestock Farm, Field Science Center for Northern Biosphere, Hokkaido University, Shinhidaka , (Japan)
Published Article
Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems
Frontiers Media S.A.
Publication Date
Apr 08, 2021
DOI: 10.3389/fsufs.2021.649613
  • Sustainable Food Systems
  • Original Research


Reduction of chemical fertilizers and effective use of livestock excrement are required for the realization of sustainable agriculture and reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The purpose of this study was to estimate the reduction rate of GHG emissions represented by comparing global warming potential (GWP) using organic fertilizers instead of chemical fertilizers. The study was conducted in a managed grassland on Andosol in southern Hokkaido for 3 years from May 2017 to April 2020. There were five treatment plots: no fertilizer, chemical fertilizer, manure, slurry, and digestive fluid. Organic fertilizers were applied such that the amount of NPK did not exceed the recommended application rate, and the shortage was supplemented with chemical fertilizers. Fluxes in CO2 caused by heterotrophic respiration (RH), CH4, and N2O were measured using the closed chamber method. Net ecosystem carbon balance (NECB) was obtained as net primary production + organic fertilizer application—RH—harvest. The GWP was estimated by CO2 equivalent NECB and CH4 and N2O emissions in each treatment. Chemical fertilizer nitrogen application rates in the organic fertilizer treatments were reduced by 10% for manure, 19.7% for slurry and 29.7% for digestive fluid compared to chemical fertilizer only, but the grass yields were not significantly different among the fertilizer treatments. The 3-year NECB showed significantly smallest carbon loss in manure treatment, and smaller carbon loss in the organic fertilizer treatments than in the chemical fertilizer only. The reduction rate in the GWP with use of organic fertilizers relative to that of chemical fertilizer was 16.5% for slurry, 27.0% for digestive fluid, and 36.2% for manure. The NECB accounted for more than 90% of the GWP in all treatments. CH4 emissions were < 0.1% of the GWP. On the other hand, N2O emissions accounted for more than 5% of the GWP, and was larger in the order of slurry > chemical fertilizer only > digestive fluid > manure. As a conclusion, these organic fertilizers can be used without no reduction of crop yield instead of chemical fertilizer, however, manure is the best way to increase soil carbon and to decrease GWP, followed by digestive fluid.

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