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Protecting the environment by optimising fertilizer use

The United Nations has declared 2015 the International Year of Soils. The aim is to raise awareness and understanding of soil's importance for our food security and the ecosystem as a whole.

Making the best use of fertilizer is vital for the health of our soil. It helps to maintain soil fertility and to prevent soil mining. They also play an essential role in maximising farmers' crop production.

However, using too much nitrogen fertilizer can have a serious impact on the environment, as well as being costly for farmers. Inadequate nitrogen supply - excess application compared to the crop's needs for example - paired with heavy rainfalls causes a risk for leaching. Rain can wash nitrogen from the soil, contaminating groundwater.

In response, Borealis has developed N-Pilot®, an innovative tool to optimise nitrogen fertilizer application. In just 15 minutes, this handheld device can accurately measure the current nitrogen needs of a crop. It then gives precise analyses and recommendations, so farmers can fine-tune their fertilizer application. This protects the environment, while saving farmers money and helping them to meet their obligations under the EU's Nitrates Directive.

“We have developed the N-Pilot® to help our partners in agriculture optimise their operations, by maximising yields and minimising their environmental impact,” explains Gerald Papst, Borealis Vice President Business Unit Fertilizer. “This new tool is the product of insights gained through over a decade of nitrogen fertilizer management.”

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