A U.S. study at the University of California, Berkley, found evidence that links increased fertilizer use over the past 50 years with a major greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming: nitrous oxide.
"Our study is the first to show empirically from the data at hand alone that the nitrogen isotope ratio in the atmosphere and how it has changed over time is a fingerprint of fertilizer use," said study leader Kristie Boering, a UC Berkeley professor of chemistry, earth and planetary science. Boering said she and her team hope the study encourages changes to fertilizer use habits as well as modifying agricultural operations that will help alleviate the release of nitrous oxide into the atmosphere.
Other studies have shown rising nitrous oxide levels by 20 percent since 1750 – from under 270 parts per billion (ppb) to more than 320 ppb. The study found increases in nitrous oxide from recent decades since 1940. Researchers say that nitrous oxide is the most harmful greenhouse gas after carbon dioxide and methane. Like carbon dioxide, it traps heat and contributes to the global warming epidemic.
Andyman Synthetic Turf Sunshine Coast's managing director, Andrew Sullivan, expressed his concern about the study and hoped it would alert natural lawn owners to the possible negative consequences of maintaining a natural lawn.
"Fertilizer can't be simply removed from everyday use. There's too much dependence on it. However, this study should serve as a serious wake-up call," Sullivan said. "Other alternatives should be developed for sustainable agriculture. Homeowners now find themselves with a great opportunity to help do their part in eliminating nitrous oxide contribution by switching from a natural lawn to synthetic turf."
Sullivan said that aside from helping reduce the levels of nitrous oxide, the benefits of synthetic turf far outweigh those of natural lawns. Fake grass looks the same as natural lawns, he said, except it offers low maintenance, drainage solutions and can endure almost any natural or artificial disturbances. And, it provides the same look and feel of natural turf.
"Within the past several years, artificial turf has come a long way," Sullivan said. "These days, people are really surprised when they take a closer look at synthetics. It's become a very plausible alternative that provides the same lush comforts of a lawn."
Andyman Synthetic Turf Sunshine Coast is an Australian owned and operated company and a leading artificial grass installer along the Sunshine Coast. Offering high-quality products and installation, the company has helped hundreds of families reduce their water consumption and bills through the installation of life-like synthetic turf.
For more information, visit http://www.fakegrasssunshinecoast.com.au/