The rapid increase in ethanol production from corn rain, and the proposed use of crop residues for ethanol production poses significant challenges in increasing awareness and providing needed training to extension educators and agency staff to address the potential environmental impacts of intensive corn production and corn residue use.
Mahdi Al-Kaisi conducted an educational training program on residue management through a series of workshops, webinars, and field training sessions across Iowa for this project. Based on a 2009 survey, Al-Kaisi estimated this training would affect over 4,000 individuals and 500,000 acres across Iowa. The level of understanding the basic role of residue in improving soil and water quality improved from 37% before the training to 86% after the training was completed.
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