Narrator: This is Science Today. Researchers at the University of California, Davis have received 2.8 million dollars in grants to study the impacts of nitrogen used in agriculture. Kate Scow, deputy director of the Agricultural Sustainability Institute, says nitrogen has been an extremely important resource, but at the same time it has a lot of negative impacts when it's overused, displaced or moved to sensitive environments.
Scow: Some of these negative impacts include nitrous oxide emissions from use of fertilizer and that's where agriculture comes in - nitrous oxide does come from a variety of sources, but agriculture is definitely a major player in emissions of nitrous oxide and that's a greenhouse gas.
Narrator: In fact, Scow says nitrous oxide is three hundred times more potent that CO2. With their grants, the researchers plan to come up with recommendations and insights about nitrogen's effects in California.
Scow: We hope actually to have a really good handle on how nitrogen moves through the state.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.