Fertilizer on farm fields is a major source of California smog, researchers say

A startling new study led by UC Davis, however, says the fertilizer in farm soils is a major contributor to smog in California.

In a study published Wednesday in the research journal Science Advances, a team led by UC Davis says agricultural soils contribute 25 to 41 percent of nitrogen oxide emissions in California.

Natural soils emit nitrogen oxide, too, but the concentration is far higher in fertilized cropland, the researchers wrote. Nitrogen oxide, or NOx, is a major factor in smog formation.

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