Challenge

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Improve sustainability of Commodity Crop Production

Fertilizer is the engine of agriculture, but inefficient use contributes to air and water pollution. Future agriculture and land use should focus on securing a sustainable, productive food supply that also supports a resilient environment.
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the problem
Nature and Context

Although fertilizer is essential for producing food across the globe, crops take up on average only 40 percent of the nitrogen applied to them each growing season. The remainder can run off and pollute water and air. Runoff from row crops (corn, soy, wheat, etc.) can lead to algae blooms in lakes, rivers and the Gulf of Mexico. This outgrowth of algae renders drinking water unsafe and kills countless fish, leading to 'dead zones' devoid of oxygen. The best solution is the one that most efficiently solves the problem on a large scale, and provides incentives for businesses to become more sustainable.

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