Articles | Volume 10, issue 2
04 Jun 2018
 | 04 Jun 2018

Historical nitrogen fertilizer use in agricultural ecosystems of the contiguous United States during 1850–2015: application rate, timing, and fertilizer types

Peiyu Cao, Chaoqun Lu, and Zhen Yu

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Cited articles

Alexander, R. B. and Smith, R. A.: County level estimates of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizer use in the United States, 1945 to 1985, U.S. Geological Survey, Books and Open-File Reports [distributor] No. 90-130, Reston, Virginia, USA, 1990.
Alexandratos, N. and Bruinsma, J.: World agriculture towards 2030/2050: the 2012 Revision, ESA Working paper No. 12-03, FAO, Rome, Italy, 2012.
Association of American Plant Food Control Officials (AAPFCO): Commercial Fertilizers (1986, 1996, 2006, 2012), available at:, last access: 19 November 2017.
Azam, F., Müller, C., Weiske, A., Benckiser, G., and Ottow, J.: Nitrification and denitrification as sources of atmospheric nitrous oxide-role of oxidizable carbon and applied nitrogen, Biol. Fert. Soils, 35, 54–61, 2002.
Beddow, J. M.: A bio-economic assessment of the spatial dynamics of US corn production and yields, PhD thesis, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, 2012.
Short summary
A long-term N fertilizer use history is important for both field investigators and modeling community to examine the cumulative impacts of N fertilizer uses. We developed a spatially explicit time-series data set of nitrogen fertilizer use in agricultural land of the continental US during 1850–2015 at a resolution of 5 km × 5 km based on multiple data sources and historical cropland maps. It contains nitrogen fertilizer use rate, application timing, and ammonium and nitrate form fertilizer use.
Final-revised paper