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APR: Spring 2022 Articles

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Iowa Lakes Drive over $1 Billion in Recreational Spending Each Year

Xibo Wan, Yongjie Ji, and Wendong Zhang
Wan et al. highlight and discuss the results of the 2019 Iowa Lakes Survey. The survey uses a sample of 2,062 Iowa residents and 411 residents from neighboring states and provides a critical update to the Iowa Lakes Valuation Project on the use of Iowa’s lakes and respondent attitudes toward water quality measures and economic development. The 2019 survey also includes a sample of bordering state residents to better understand their usage of Iowa lakes and the value they place on water quality.

Challenges and Opportunities for a Manure Market in Iowa

Christopher C. Pudenz and Lee Schulz
Farmers have long utilized manure as fertilizer for crops and as a soil amendment—utilizing manure for fertilizer is an efficient and potentially revenue-generating use of what otherwise would be a waste product. Pudenz and Schulz examine the challenges and opportunities of creating a manure market and find that Iowa’s livestock producers and crop farmers may have to adjust practices for a statewide manure market to develop.

Fresh Projections for the Next Marketing Year

Lee Schulz and Chad Hart
Schulz and Hart analyze the USDA’s May World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates to determine how drought conditions in the western United States, the spread of avian influenza, planting delays this spring, the continuation of the Russia-Ukraine war, the volatility in the energy markets, and the continuation of supply chain issues could affect production and prices for livestock, corn, and soybeans.

Nitrogen Management with Abnormal Rainfall

Eseul Choi, Guilherme Depaula, Peter Kyveryga, and Suzanne Fey
Abnormally high rainfall may increase both the uncertainty about nitrogen fertilizer use in agriculture and the discharge of nitrate into water streams; and, changes in climate may lead to higher variability in rainfall with more frequent abnormal precipitation. Choi et al. use data from two ISA experiments to study how abnormal rainfall changes the relationship between corn yields and nitrogen use and find that abnormal rainfall tends to increase the productivity of nitrogen but also the likelihood of environmental damage because of more leaching.

US Agricultural Exports to China during the Phase One Trade Deal: Larger Pie, Smaller Slice?

Xi He, Dermot Hayes, and Wendong Zhang
The Phase One trade deal, signed on January 15, 2020, obligated China to purchase $36.5 billion worth of US agricultural products in the first year ($12.5 billion more than the baseline) and $43.5 billion in the second year ($19.5 billion more than the baseline). While China fulfilled 81% of its Phase One agricultural purchase obligations, it is unclear if China’s record purchases were driven by China’s growing import demand or its trade deal obligations. He et al. investigate whether China’s agricultural imports from the United States grew in proportion to China’s agricultural imports from all sources during the trade deal.

Carbon and Nutrient Co-benefits of Large Conservation Programs: An Illustration with EQIP in Iowa

Zhushan Du, Hongli Feng, and Wendong Zhang
The federal government and many communities and private companies have set net zero greenhouse gas emission goals, with the federal government investing up to $1 billion to support climate-smart agriculture and forestry through voluntary conservation programs. Furthermore, various companies (e.g., Indigo, Truterra, Bayer, and Corteva) have also injected much private investment into the agricultural sector and various companies have set up mechanisms to provide incentives for farmers to adopt carbon sequestering conservation practices. Using an analysis based on data of program participation and existing literature, Du et al. illustrate the co-benefits of improved water quality and sequestered carbon by practices enrolled in EQIP.