A decision support system for environmental management of agriculture.
The University of Hertfordshire, in collaboration with two UK agricultural establishments are developing a decision support system for environmental management in arable agriculture. The system aims to encourage and promote best practice. Significant environmental effects from arable agriculture arise from the use of fertilisers, pesticides and unsustainable soil management practices. The software's assessment routines determine eco-ratings and textual descriptions of performance by comparing actual practices with best practice. To provide a full farm assessment, other activities such as energy and water use, waste management and intensive livestock husbandry are also included. The system incorporates modules which allow 'what if scenarios to be explored and a hypertext information system which includes legislation, codes of best practice, a science library, glossary, index, contacts database and information on formal environmental management and farm auditing.