Növénytermelés / Volume 66 / Issue 4 (December 2017) / pp. 5-24

BEHEK MARCELL–SÁRDI KATALIN

Experiences concerning the application of the Nitrate Directive in Komárom-Esztergom County

Pure, clean water is vital to human health and well-being, as well as to natural ecosystems. For this reason, safeguarding water quality is one of the cornerstones of European environmental policy. As water sources are not restricted within national boundaries, an EU-wide approach is crucial to tackling problems of pollution. The 1991 Nitrate Directive is one of the earliest pieces of EU legislation aimed at controlling pollution and improving water quality. It is known that nitrogen is one of the essential nutrients, vital for the normal development of crops and yield, however, it may have a harmful effect on both humans and environment. The goal of our survey was to evaluate the activity of farmers in Komárom-Esztergom County and characterize their fertiliser use practices as well as comparing the result to the national and regional average.

The survey was carried out between 09/01/2015 and 12/31/2015. The survey consisted of 4 parts (general information, nutrient management, organic manure application and fertilisation), in the aggregate of 14 questions. Most of the questions were illustrated with diagrams. An ANOVA test was applied between different groups of farmers analysing the difference of the nutrition management practices between each group.

Correlation was studied between the size of farmland and the amount of the applied nitrogen fertiliser. The survey was completed by 148 farmers. The investigation has not brought the expected results. The lack of agricultural qualification and soil testing was evident. It could be established that most farmers used only mineral fertilisers.

The final result of ANOVA showed that there were no significant differences between the examined groups. The result of the performed correlation analysis showed that the farm size and the amount of N applied were not closely dependent. Nitrogen rates were considerably lower than those of the national and regional averages, and farmers applied approximately half of the average amounts of organic manure.

Keywords: nitrate directive, N fertiliser, survey

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