|New ponds already benefit biodiversity in the landscape|
|Efficient field drainage reduces surface runoff and erosion|
Across all three years and all three catchments, the water quality data also reveal that domestic sources of phosphorus, as well as agricultural sources, are contributing to high concentrations recorded at the base of our study catchments. Base of catchment peaks in phosphorus occur in late summer and autumn, before runoff from arable land takes place, and tributaries in which there are sewage treatment works have consistently higher P concentrations than purely agricultural ones. This is a clear illustration of the need to address both domestic and agricultural sources of phosphorus together in order to improve water quality.
Although the baseline period of data collection has ended, the monitoring continues. Continuing data collection will further enable us to understand what is going on in our study area and inform what we do in future to improve water quality, while wherever possible, bringing benefits to food production as well. We will be working increasingly closely with farmers to enable them to manage soils and nutrients to the benefit of us all.