Thank you to all who participated in the California Nitrogen Assessment’s (CNA) Stakeholder Review process. The California Nitrogen Assessment was designed to respond to stakeholders’ needs, and the review process was an opportunity for the CNA team to hear from you in order to understand how well the assessment meets those needs.
The stakeholder review process for the CNA has concluded. Webinars of summary findings for individual sections of the assessment, and downloadable drafts of final (pre-press) drafts, are available below.
Through stakeholder engagement in the CNA's early stages, stakeholders generated a large number of questions about nitrogen in California agriculture. We synthesized a large list into overarching research questions, which served as guides for how to focus the California Nitrogen Assessment.
The California Nitrogen Assessment Team has created a Stakeholder Advisory Committee composed of representatives of stakeholders from a variety of interest groups and perspectives. These individuals review in-progress documents and provide links between the assessment and important stakeholder groups. Current committee members are listed below.
Management practices, and their underlying technologies, together with land-use decisions, have a dramatic influence on the total amount and ultimate fate of nitrogen (N) in the environment. Based on the California nitrogen mass balance (Chapter 4), nine critical areas for intervention in the nitrogen cascade were identified. This chapter reviews these critical control points and evaluates related mitigative strategies and technological options to reduce emissions of nitrogen. This chapter also evaluates the potential for synergies and trade-offs that may occur from adopting these strategies.
Because nitrogen emissions from agricultural sources are geographically dispersed, cannot be easily observed, and are difficult to precisely control, this problem presents unique challenges for effective policy design. A suite of integrated practice and policy solutions may be needed to achieve both adequate source control and mitigation of the existing N stock within reasonable time-frames. This chapter provides an overview of available policy instruments for non-point source pollution control and examines specific outcomes when these mechanisms have been implemented to control N pollution in practice. Policy characteristics are then organized into a coherent methodology for assessing candidate policies for controlling N emissions from agricultural sources in California.
A mass balance of nitrogen inputs and outputs for California was calculated for the year 2005. This scientifically rigorous accounting method tracks the size of nitrogen flows which allows us to understand which sectors are the major users of nitrogen and which contribute most to the nitrogen in the air, water, and ecosystems of California.
Scenarios can help stakeholders deal with controversy and complexity, and they are particularly useful in cases where there is a large amount of uncertainty, as is the case in this assessment. This chapter describes the process and results of a scenarios development workshop involving a diverse group of stakeholders who were asked to creatively think about the following question: How will we manage nitrogen in California agriculture over the next 20 years?