Agricultural Policy Environmental EXtender (APEX) Model: An Emerging Tool for Landscape and Watershed Environmental Analyses, The

Philip W. Gassman, Jimmy R. Williams, Xiuying Wang, Ali Saleh, Edward Osei, Larry M. Hauck, R. César Izaurralde, Joan D. Flowers
April 2009  [09-TR 49]

Download Full Text

Suggested citation:

Gassman, P.W., J. Williams, X. Wang, A. Saleh, E. Osei, L. Hauck, R. Izaurralde, and J. Flowers. 2009. "Agricultural Policy Environmental EXtender (APEX) Model: An Emerging Tool for Landscape and Watershed Environmental Analyses, The." Technical report 09-TR 49. Center for Agricultural and Rural Development, Iowa State University.


The Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender (APEX) model was developed by the Blacklands Research and Extension Center in Temple, Texas. APEX is a flexible and dynamic tool that is capable of simulating a wide array of management practices, cropping systems, and other land use across a broad range of agricultural landscapes, including whole farms and small watersheds. The model can be configured for novel land management strategies, such as filter strip impacts on pollutant losses from upslope cropfields, intensive rotational grazing scenarios depicting movement of cows between paddocks, vegetated grassed waterways in combination with filter strip impacts, and land application of manure removal from livestock feedlots or waste storage ponds. A description of the APEX model is provided, including an overview of all the major components in the model. Applications of the model are then reviewed, starting with livestock manure and other management scenarios performed for Livestock and the Environment: A National Pilot Project (NPP), and then continuing with feedlot, pesticide, forestry, buffer strip, conservation practice, and other management or land use scenarios performed at the plot, field, watershed, or regional scale. The application descriptions include a summary of calibration and/or validation results obtained for the different NPP assessments as well as for other APEX simulation studies. Available APEX Geographic Information System–based or Windows-based interfaces are also described, as are forthcoming future improvements and additional research needs for the model.

Keywords: APEX, best management practices, farm and watershed simulations, soil carbon, water quality.