News

Cover of Whole Farm Conservation Best Practices Manual.
July 26, 2021

The Conservation Learning Group, a think tank-based organization at Iowa State University Extension and Outreach dedicated to addressing conservation and environmental challenges, has been recognized by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers with a 2021 Educational Aids Blue Ribbon for CLG’s Whole Farm Conservation Best Practices Manual. 

Image of side of conservation education trailer decorated to look like a wetland.
June 07, 2021

A new trailer named “Marsh Madness” combines sight, sound and science to engage Iowa audiences about the values of the state’s wetland ecosystems. The artfully designed trailer features scenes of wetlands and their plant and animal communities and recorded sounds of wetland fauna. Adding to the immersive educational experience are three-dimensional interactive models demonstraing the unique landscape placement and hydrology of three wetland types typical in the state. The trailer was developed by Iowa Learning Farms team and the Iowa Nutrient Research Center. 

image of wetland with title of webinar
May 03, 2021

“Profiles in the Wonders of Iowa’s Wetlands” will feature 12 in-depth educational videos highlighting the diversity and benefits of wetland ecosystems throughout the state. The videos are being developed by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach and the Iowa Nutrient Research Center. A webinar on Tuesday, May 25, at 7-8 p.m., kicks off the series during American Wetlands Month.

Cover of INRC annual report.
April 28, 2021

The Iowa Nutrient Research Center is pleased to present its first annual report. View or download the four page Iowa Nutrient Research Center's 2020 Annual Review with short highlights of INRC's work, recent activities and comments from stakeholders. 

April 13, 2021

Alison Robertson, plant pathology and microbiology, discusses findings from INRC-supported research on potential benefits of spacing cereal rye cover crop plantings from corn crop seedings in “Corn and Soybean Digest.”   

Illustration showing drainage water recycling system with overhead pivot irrigation and reservoir
April 05, 2021

Research underway by the Iowa Nutrient Research Center (INRC) and the Iowa Soybean Association is analyzing drainage water recycling’s costs and benefits, with funding from the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, the INRC and the USDA National Institute for Food and Agriculture.

March 15, 2021

AMES, Iowa - The Iowa Nutrient Research Center is accepting new proposals for research that seek to improve water quality by reducing nitrate and phosphorus in Iowa’s waterways.

automated sampling system in field
February 11, 2021

AMES, Iowa — With the help of an innovative new monitoring system, Iowa State researchers looking at nitrogen and phosphorus losses to water and the atmosphere are able to pinpoint nutrient fluxes better than many previous studies. In the process, they are refining knowledge of where – and when -- to expect nutrient-loss hot spots. 

Aerial view of farm landscape with stream and buffers
January 13, 2021

AMES, Iowa - A spring series of virtual seminars bringing findings from watershed research across the country, begins Wednesday, January 27, hosted by the Iowa Nutrient Research Center at Iowa State University. The online events will take place each month on the fourth Wednesday, from 3:00-4:00 p.m., through May 26. Sessions are free and open to the public.

Image used to promote drainage forum
December 10, 2020

The 2020 annual Drainage Research Forum was held December 1, from 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. (CDT), via Zoom.

Partners of Scott County Watersheds grants Program flyer image
November 19, 2020

Partners of Scott County Watersheds presented an online Conservation Grant Programs webinar, Nov.

View of front of USDA National Lab for Agriculture and the Environment
September 16, 2020

A collaborative partnership between researchers with USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and Iowa State University has produced a string of notable water quality studies that have influenced conservation research and practice nationwide.

September 10, 2020

 There is a risk of elevated fall soil nitrate levels due to dry conditions this growing season. Dry conditions affect soil N cycling in several ways, resulting in excess residual nitrate in the soil profile after fall harvest and the potential for substantial N leaching with late fall or spring precipitation. An article, "Water Quality Impacts of Cover Crop Following a Drought" shares relevant data from research at two sites, with recommendations for how to minimize the risk of nitrate-N loss when rainfall occurs. Co-authors: Matt Helmers, INRC Director; Brian Dougherty, ISU Agricultural Engineer; Emily Waring, graduate student, agricultural and biosystems engineering. Published by Iowa Extension and Outreach - Integrated Crop Management.

farmed wetland under cloudy sky
September 01, 2020

The Iowa Nutrient Research Center at Iowa State University announces funding for 11 new water quality and nutrient management projects for 2020-2021.

“This round of projects represents over $1.3 million for water quality research,” said Matt Helmers, Iowa Nutrient Research Center director and professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering at Iowa State. “We are pleased that the projects reflect a number of the research priorities developed last year with a broad range of stakeholders, including farmers. These include supporting research on new nutrient-reduction technologies or cropping systems, developing better understanding of in-stream processes and examining potential unintended consequences of conservation practices.”

August 25, 2020

The Iowa Water Center and Iowa Nutrient Research Center at Iowa State University will jointly fund research to explore the linkages between water quality and social well-being for Iowa communities.

INRS Annual Report 2018-19 cover
July 01, 2020

The 2018-2019 Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy (INRS) annual report was released today by Iowa State University, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. The findings reveal increased farmer, landowner and community engagement, use of conservation practices and funding invested in soil health and water quality projects.

Wetland with waterfowl
June 24, 2020

"Farm News" interview with Iowa Nutrient Research Center Assistant Director Kay Stefanik about the importance of wetlands and the roles they play in Iowa's landscape. Article (June 19, 2020) by Kriss Nelson. 

Man with microphone in front of wetland, speaking to field day group
May 27, 2020

Fifteen years of wetlands research by Iowa State University – a study thought to be the largest and longest running project of its kind in the country – clarifies their performance as highly beneficial systems for reducing nitrogen pollution.

wetland with yellow flowers in foreground
May 14, 2020

Kay Stefanik, Assistant Director, Iowa Nutrient Research Center, discusses the ecological services wetlands provide in the Iowa agricultural landscape, in a blog post for the Iowa Learning Farms/Conservation Learning Group.  

May 04, 2020

“Farmers and landowners are important partners who help make it possible to test research in different farming and geographic situations,” said Matt Helmers, director of the Iowa Nutrient Research Center at Iowa State University. “Rob Stout and Eric Hoien are two excellent examples of cooperators whose support has benefited INRC-related water quality research."

March 30, 2020

AMES, Iowa – The Iowa Nutrient Research Center at Iowa State University seeks new proposals for research that can help landowners, farmers, agribusiness and others improve water quality by reducing nitrate and phosphorus in the state’s waterways. 

March 23, 2020

The INRC Spring Seminar Series, "Water Research Past, Present and Future" will not take place as scheduled in March and April, due to campus efforts to reduce the potential for COVID-19 exposure. INRC plans to reschedule the presentations when conditions allow (details to be announced later). 

Matt Helmers speaking at field day
March 13, 2020

Over the past couple of weeks, I have had the opportunity to attend two events that have left a distinct impression—what really struck me is the creativity and passion for conservation and sustaining rural communities.
-- Matt Helmers, Conservation Learning Group blog post, March 12, 2020. 

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