Study captures environmental impact of precision ag adoption

A new study by the Association of Equipment Manufacturers evaluates the environmental benefits of precision agriculture.

Senior vice president Curt Blades tells Brownfield the report focused on widely adopted row crop production technology.

“When you use technology to do your job better, whether it’s applying the right chemical at the right time at the right place, or the right fertilizer exactly where it’s needed, the crop grows better and has less of an environmental footprint,” he says.

The report tracked improvements made with auto-guidance, machine section control, variable rate technology, machine analytics, and precision irrigation.

Blades says the report estimates there has been a four percent increase in crop production the past 18 years.

“That’s the equivalent of about 10 million acres that were avoided because the crops were more efficient,” he says.

Better tracking of inputs he says has also led to 30 million fewer pounds of herbicides used and 100 million fewer gallons of fossil fuel burned.

Several organizations including the American Soybean Association, CropLife America, and National Corn Growers Association partnered in the report.

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