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Anaerobic digestion: Decomposition of biological wastes by micro-organisms, usually under wet conditions, in the absence of air (oxygen), to produce a gas comprising mostly methane and carbon dioxide.
Animal feeding operation (AFO): Agricultural enterprises where animals are kept and raised in confined situations. AFOs congregate animals, feed, manure and urine, dead animals, and production operations on a small land area. Feed is brought to the animals rather than the animals grazing or otherwise seeking feed in pastures, fields, or on rangeland. Winter feeding of animals on pasture or rangeland is not normally considered an AFO.
Anoxia: The absence of dissolved oxygen.
Bacterioplankton: The bacterial component of the plankton that drifts in the water column.
Benthic organisms: Organisms living in association with the bottom of aquatic environments (e.g., polychaetes, clams, snails).
Best Management Practices (BMPs): BMPs are effective, practical, structural or nonstructural methods that are designed to prevent or reduce the movement of sediment, nutrients, pesticides and other chemical contaminants from the land to surface or ground water, or which otherwise protect water quality from potential adverse effects of agricultural activities. These practices are developed to achieve a cost-effective balance between water quality protection and the agricultural production (e.g., crop, forage, animal, forest).
Bioenergy: Useful, renewable energy produced from organic matter - the conversion of the complex carbohydrates in organic matter to energy. Organic matter may either be used directly as a fuel, processed into liquids and gasses, or be a residual of processing and conversion.
Biogas: A combustible gas derived from decomposing biological waste under anaerobic conditions. Biogas normally consists of 50 to 60 percent methane. See also landfill gas.
Biomass: Any organic matter that is available on a renewable or recurring basis, including agricultural crops and trees, wood and wood residues, plants (including aquatic plants), grasses, animal residues, municipal residues, and other residue materials. Biomass is generally produced in a sustainable manner from water and carbon dioxide by photosynthesis. There are three main categories of biomass - primary, secondary, and tertiary.
Bioreactor: A container in which a biological reaction takes place. As used in this report a bioreactor is a container or a trench filled with a biodegradeable carbon source used to enhance biological denitrification for removal of nitrate from drainage water.
Biosolids: Nutrient-rich soil-like materials resulting from the treatment of domestic sewage in a treatment facility. During treatment, bacteria and other tiny organisms break sewage down into organic matter, sometimes used as fertilizer.
Cellulosic ethanol: Ethanol that is produced from cellulose material; a long chain of simple sugar molecules and the principal chemical constituent of cell walls of plants.
Chlorophyll: Pigment found in plant cells that are active in harnessing energy during photosynthesis.
Conservation Reserve Program (CRP): CRP provides farm owners or operators with an annual per-acre rental payment and half the cost of establishing a permanent land cover, in exchange for retiring environmentally sensitive cropland from production for 10- to 15-years. In 1996, Congress reauthorized CRP for an additional round of contracts, limiting enrollment to 36.4 million acres at any time. The 2002 Farm Act increased the enrollment limit to 39 million acres. Producers can offer land for competitive bidding based on an Environmental Benefits Index (EBI) during periodic signups, or can automatically enroll more limited acreages in practices such as riparian buffers, field windbreaks, and grass strips on a continuous basis. CRP is funded through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC).
Conservation practices (CPs): Any action taken to produce environmental improvements, particularly with respect to agricultural non-point source emissions. The term is used broadly to refer to structural practices, such as buffers, as well as nonstructural preactices, such as in-field nutrient management planning and application. Conservation Practice standards have been developed by NRCS and are available at: http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/Technical/Standards/nhcp.html.
Corn stover: Corn stocks that remain after the corn is harvested. Such stocks are low in water content and very bulky.
Cyanobacteria: A phylum (or “division”) of bacteria that obtain their energy through photosynthesis. They are often referred to as blue-green algae, although they are in fact prokaryotes, not algae. The description is primarily used to reflect their appearance and ecological role rather than their evolutionary lineage. The name “cyanobacteria” comes from the color of the bacteria, cyan.
Demersal organisms: Organisms that are, at times, associated with the bottom of aquatic environments, but capable of moving away from it (e.g., blue crabs, shrimp, red drum).
Denitrification: Nitrogen transformations in water and soil that make nitrogen effectively unavailable for plant uptake, usually returning it to the atmosphere as nitrogen gas.
Diatom: A major phytoplankton group characterized by cells enclosed in silicon frustules, or shells.
Dinoflagellates: Mostly single-celled photosynthetic algae that bear flagella (long cell extensions that function in swimming) and live in fresh or marine waters.
Edge-of-field nitrogen loss: A term that refers to the nitrogen that is lost or exported from fields in agricultural production.
Effluent: The liquid or gas discharged from a process or chemical reactor, usually containing residues from that process.
Emissions: Waste substances released into the air or water. See also Effluent.
Eutrophic: Waters, soils, or habitats that are high in nutrients; in aquatic systems, associated with wide swings in dissolved oxygen concentrations and frequent algal blooms.
Eutrophication: An increase in the rate of supply of organic matter to an ecosystem.
Greenhouse gases: Gases that trap the heat of the sun in the Earth's atmosphere, producing the greenhouse effect. The two major greenhouse gases are water vapor and carbon dioxide. Other greenhouse gases include methane, ozone, chlorofluorocarbons, and nitrous oxide.
Hydrogen sulfide: A chemical, toxic to oxygen-dependent organisms, that diffuses into the water as the oxygen levels above the seabed sediments become zero.
Hypoxia: Very low dissolved oxygen concentrations, generally less than 2 milligrams per liter.
Lignocellulose: A combination of lignin and cellulose that strengthens woody plant cells.
Nitrate: An inorganic form of nitrogen; chemically NO3.
Nitrogen fixation: The transformation of atmospheric nitrogen into nitrogen compounds that can be used by growing plants.
Non-point source: A diffuse source of chemical and/or nutrient inputs not attributable to any single discharge (e.g., agricultural runoff, urban runoff, atmospheric deposition).
Nutrients: Inorganic chemicals (particularly nitrogen, phosphorus, and silicon) required for the growth of plants, including crops and phytoplankton.
Phytoplankton: Plant life (e.g., algae), usually containing chlorophyll, that passively drifts in a water body.
Plankton: Organisms living suspended in the water column, incapable of moving against currents.
Point source: Readily identifiable inputs where treated wastes are discharged from municipal, industrial, and agricultural facilities to the receiving waters through a pipe or drain.
Pre-sidedress-nitrate test (PSNT): A soil nitrate-N test determined in surface soil samples (usually 0 to 30 cm or 0 to 12 in deep), collected between corn rows when the corn is about 15 cm (6 in) tall. Adjustments in the rate of side-dressed N can be made if the soil test indicates elevated nitrate-N levels, based upon calibrations that vary among growing regions. When successfully calibrated, the test results can be used as an index of the amount of N that may be released during the course of the growing season by organic sources such as soil organic matter, manure, and crop residues.
Productivity: The conversion of light energy and carbon dioxide into living organic material.
Pycnocline: The region of the water column characterized by the strongest vertical gradient in density, attributable to temperature, salinity, or both.
Recoverable manure: The portion of manure as excreted that could be collected from buildings and lots where livestock are held, and thus would be available for land application.
Recoverable manure nutrients: The amounts of nitrogen and phosphorus in manure that would be expected to be available for land application. They are estimated by adjusting the quantity of recoverable manure for nutrient loss during collection, transfer, storage, and treatment; but are not adjusted for losses of nutrients at the time of land application.
Respiration: The consumption of oxygen during energy utilization by cells and organisms.
Riparian floodplain: Area adjacent to a river or other body of water subject to frequent flooding.
Soil tilth: The physical condition of the soil as related to its ease of tillage, fitness as a seedbed, and impedance to seedling emergence and root penetration. A soil with good “tilth” has large pore spaces for adequate air infiltration and water movement, and holds a reasonable supply of water and nutrients. Soil tilth is a factor of soil texture, soil structure, and the interplay with organic content and the living organisms that help make up the soil ecosystem.
Stratification: A multilayered water column, delineated by pycnoclines.
Sustainable: An ecosystem condition in which biodiversity, renewability, and resource productivity are maintained over time.
Urease and nitrification inhibitors: Urease is a ubiquitous soil microbial enzyme that facilitates the hydrolysis of urine and urea to form ammonia. In the soil, ammonia readily hydrolyzes to ammonium. Soil ammonium also is formed by the mineralization of soil organic matter and manures. Ammonium is then oxidized or “nitrified” first to nitrite (NO2) and then to nitrate (NO3), which is highly soluble and subject to movement in the soil with the moisture front, or leaching under certain conditions. Under anaerobic conditions, NO3 can be “denitrified” to the gases nitrous oxide (N2O) and nitrogen (N2), and released to the atmosphere. Urease inhibitors are chemicals applied to fertilizers or manures to reduce urease activity. Under certain environmental conditions urease inhibitors can temporarily inhibit or reduce ammonia loss (volatilization) to the atmosphere from urea-containing fertilizers or manures. Nitrification inhibitors are chemicals which can temporaritly inhibit or reduce nitrification of anhydrous ammonia, ammonium-containing or urea-containing fertilizers applied to the soil; which may indirectly help to reduce denitrification losses of N. Under certain environmental conditions, urease and nitrification inhibitors help improve soil retention and crop recovery of applied N, which may reduce potential environmental N losses.
Voluntary programs: Voluntary conservation programs that have no significant financial incentive (positive or negative) to encourage the adoption of conservation practices.
Watershed: The drainage basin contributing water, organic matter, dissolved nutrients, and sediments to a stream or lake.
Zooplankton: Animal life that drifts or weakly swims in a water body, often feeding on phytoplankton.
List of Acronyms
ADCPs – Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers
AFO – Animal Feeding Operation
AMLE – Adjusted Maximum Likelihood Estimate
ANNAMOX – Anaerobic Ammonia Oxidation
A/P ratio – Agglutinated to Porcelaneous ratio (based on the relative abundance of three low-oxygen tolerant species of benthic foraminifers; Pseudononin altlanticum, Epistominella vitrea, and Buliminella morgani)
ARS – Agricultural Research Service (USDA)
AUs – Animal Units
BBL – Benthic Boundary Layer
BMPs – Best Management Practices
BNR – Biological Nutrient Removal
BOD – Biochemical Oxygen Demand
Bu/A – Bushels per acre
C – Carbon
CAFO – Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation
CASTnet – Clean Air Status and Trends Network
CC or Ccc – Continuous Corn
CCC – Commodity Credit Corporation
CCOA – Corn-Corn-Oat-Alfalfa (crop rotation)
CDOM – Colored Dissolved Organic Matter
CEAP - Conservation Effectiveness Assessment Program
CENR – Committee on Environment and Natural Resources
Cm – Corn-meadow (crop rotation)
CMAQ – Community Multiscale Air Quality model
COAA – Corn-Oat-Alfalfa-Alfalfa (crop rotation)
CO2 – Carbon Dioxide
cph – cycles per hour
CPRA – Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority
CREP – Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program
CRN – Controlled – and slow Release N fertilizers
CRP - Conservation Reserve Program
CRPA – Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority
CS or CSb – Corn Soybean rotation
CSP – Conservation Security Program
CTA – Conservation Technical Assistance
CTDs – Conductivity, Temperature, and Depth instrumentation
CVs – Coefficients of Variations
DDGs – Dried Distillers Grain
DIN:DIP – Dissolved Inorganic Nitrogen:Dissolved Inorganic Phosphorus
DO – Dissolved Oxygen
DOC – Dissolved Organic Carbon
DOE – Department of Energy
DOM – Dissolved Organic Matter
DON – Dissolved Organic Nitrogen
DRP – Dissolved Reactive Phosphorus
EBI – Environmental Benefits Index
ECa – Electrical Conductivity
ENR – Enhanced Nutrient Removal
EPC0 – Equilibrium P Concentration
EPIC – Environment Productivity Impact Calculator model
EQIP -- Environmental Quality Incentives Program
ERS – Economic Research Service (USDA)
Fe+2 – Ferrous Iron
FR – Federal Register
FWA – Flow Weighted Average
GAO – General Accounting Office
GCOOS – Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System
GCTM – Global Chemistry Transport Model
GHG – Green House Gases
GIS – Geographic Information System
GLWQA – Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement
GOM -Gulf of Mexico
GPS – Global Positioning System
GWW – Grass Waterways
HAB – Harmful Algal Bloom
HAP – Hypoxia Advisory Panel or SAB Panel
HEL – Highly Erodable Land
HLR – Hydraulic Loading Rate
HRUs – Hydraulic Response Units
HUC – Hydrologic Unit Code
HYDRA – Hydrological Routing Algorithm
IATP – Institute of Agricultural and Trade Policy
IBIS – Integrated Biosphere Simulator model
IJC – International Joint Commission
IPCC – Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
ISNT – Illinois Soil Nitrogen Test
LOADEST – Load Estimator model
LOWESS – Locally Weighted Scatterplot Smooth curves
LSNT – Late Spring Nitrate Test
LUMCON – Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium
M – Million
MGD – Million gallons per day
MARB – Mississippi-Atchafalaya River basin
MART -- Management Action Reassessment Team
Mn+2 – Manganese (oxidation state common in aquatic-biological systems)
MRB – Mississippi River basin
MR/GMWNTF – Mississippi River/Gulf of Mexico Watershed Nutrient Task Force
MSEA – Management System Evaluation Area
N -- Nitrogen
N2 – Nitrogen gas (colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that makes up 78.09% of air)
N2O – Nitrous Oxide
NADP – National Air Deposition Program
NANI -- Net Anthropogenic Nitrogen Inputs
NAS – National Academy of Sciences
NASA – National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NASA-SeaWiFS – NASA Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-view Sensor (project providing qualitative data on global ocean bio-optical properties)
NASQAN – National Stream Quality Accounting Network (USGS water-quality monitoring program)
NECOP – Nutrient Enhanced Coastal Ocean Productivity
NGOM – Northern Gulf of Mexico
NH3 -- Ammonia
NH4+ -- Ammonium
NHx – The total atmospheric concentration of ammonia (NH3) and ammonium (NH4+)
NOAA – National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NO2 – Nitrite Nitrogen (NO2-) if in water and Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) if in air
NO3 – Nitrate nitrogen
NOx – Mono-nitrogen oxides, or the total concentration of nitric oxide (NO) plus nitrogen dioxide (NO2)
NOy – Reactive odd nitrogen or the sum of NOx plus compounds produced from the oxidation of NOX, which includes nitric acid, peroxyacetyl nitrate, and other compounds
NPDES – National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System
NPSs – Non-Point Sources
NRC – National Research Council
NRCS – Natural Resource Conservation Service
NRI – National Resources Inventory
NSTC – National Science and Technology Council
O2 – Diatomic Oxygen (makes up 20.95% of air)
OM – Organic Matter
P – Phosphorus
PEB index – An index based on the relative abundance of three low-oxygen tolerant species of benthic foraminifers; Pseudononin altlanticum, Epistominella vitrea, and Buliminella morgani
POC – Particulate Organic Carbon
ppmv – Parts per million by volume
ppt – Parts per thousand
PS – Point Source
PSNT – Pre-Sidedress Nitrate Test
RivR-N -- A regression model that predicts the proportion of N removed from streams and reservoirs as an inverse function of the water displacement time of the water body (ratio of water body depth to water time of travel)
SAB – Science Advisory Board
SCOPE – Science Committee on Problems of the Environment
SD – Standard Deviation
Si – Silicon
SOC – Soil Organic Carbon
SOM – Soil Organic Matter
SON – Soil Organic Nitrogen
SPARROW - Spatially Referenced Regression on Watershed attributes model
SRP or DRP or ortho P – Soluble Reactive Phosphorus, Dissolved Reactive Phosphorus, Orthophosphate
STATSGO – State Soil Geographic database
STORET – STOrage and RETrieval data system (EPA’s largest computerized environmental data system)
STPs – Sewage Treatment Plants
SWAT - Soil and Water Assessment Tool model
THMB – Terrestrial Hydrology Model with Biogeochemistry
TKN – Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen
TM3 – Tracer Model version 3 (a global atmospheric chemistry/transport model)
TN – Total Nitrogen
TP – Total Phosphorus
TPCs – Typical Pollutant Concentrations
TSS – Total Suspended Solids
UAN – Urea Ammonium Nitrate
UMRB – Upper Mississipppi River basin
UMRSHNC – Upper Mississippi River Sub-basin Hypoxia Nutrient Committee
USMP – U.S. Agriculture Sector Mathematical Programming model
USACE – United States Army Corps of Engineers
USDA – United States Department of Agriculture
USEPA or EPA – United States Environmental Protection Agency
USGS – United States Geological Survey
WRP – Wetlands Reserve Program
Conversion Factors and Abbreviations
MULTIPLY BY TO OBTAIN
centimeter (cm) 0.3937 inch (in)
millimeter (mm) 0.0394 inch (in)
meter (m) 3.281 foot (ft)
kilometer (km) 0.6214 mile (mi)
square kilometer (km2) 0.3861 square mile (mi2)
hectare (ha) 2.471 acre (ac)
hectare (ha) 0.01 square kilometer (km2)
liter (L) 1.057 quart (qt)
liter (L) 0.0284 bushel (bu) US, dry
gram (g) 0.0353 ounce (oz)
gram per cubic meter (g/m3) 0.00169 pound per cubic yard (lb/yd3)
kilogram (kg) 2.205 pound (lb), avoirdupois
metric tonne (tonne) 2,205.0 pound (lb), avoirdupois
metric tonne (tonne) 1.1023 U.S. short ton (ton)
cubic meter per second (m3/s) 35.31 cubic foot per second (cfs)
kilogram per hectare (kg/ha) 0.893 pound per acre (lb/ac)
CONCENTRATION UNIT APPROXIMATELY EQUALS
milligram per liter (mg/L) part per million (ppm)
The following equation was used to compute flux of chemicals:
concentration (mg/L) x flow (m3/s) x 8.64 x 10-2 = metric tonne per day (tonne/d)
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