Nutrient budgets for Australia


29 May 2001

1998 Annual Interpretive Summary

Preliminary calculations have been performed on nutrient budgets relating to the majority of crops grown in Australia. Results indicate the plant nutrient deficit between fertilizer applied and nutrients removed in harvested crops amounts to approximately 1.1 million tonnes of N and 0.6 million tonnes of K. The latter K deficit is approximately equivalent to 1.2 million tonnes of muriate of potash (MOP). However, the N deficit does not take into account N fixed by legumes in pastures and crops, which can subsequently become available for plant uptake. The calculations also found an apparent P surplus as P applied exceeds P removal by approximately 20O,OOO tonnes. This apparent excess does not take into account P that is fixed into unavailable forms in many soils. AUSTRALIA-10