Slurry and manure are likely to release ammonia when they come into contact with air. Emissions of ammonia can:

  • Disrupt the balance of some types of vegetation such as heathlands or bogs which exist partly because of naturally low soil nitrogen.
  • Result in acidity when it reacts in the soil. Excess acid in the soil is damaging to certain types of vegetation.
  • Lead to damaged foliage and slower growth of trees or other vegetation growing close to a source of high ammonia emissions due to the direct toxic effects of the gas.

The UK is required to reduce its ammonia emissions to meet air quality standards.

Good practice

There are many ways to reduce emissions of ammonia from slurry and manure handling, including:

  • using different storage methods for manure
  • using different handling and spreading methods for slurry.

The Codes of good agricultural practice provide more information on how you can reduce ammonia emissions.

DAERA has published a document that provides good practice advice on how to reduce ammonia emissions from your farm.

DAERA: The Code of Good Agricultural Practice for the Reduction of Ammonia Emissions

The NIEA has produced a leaflet about the problems caused by ammonia emissions and what can be done to reduce them.

NIEA: Leaflet on ammonia

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