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- Develop practical solutions to reduce nutrient exports below target nutrient levels.
- Identify incentives, strategies, and tools, needed to implement the solutions.
- Identify the time frame and cost of meeting water quality objectives.
- Identify the transferability of the conceptual solutions to other watersheds in the Great Lakes and Mississippi River Basins.
- Identify knowledge, technology, and education gaps.
- Build frameworks in which different organizations and disciplines work better together to more effectively solve problems of nutrient impacts on water resources.
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Select teams will be invited to prepare and deliver ‘case studies’ of their engagement in agricultural landscapes to benefit healthy soils and healthy waters, with several of the practices noted below as likely topical areas for presentation and discussion. Smaller groups of 6-8 people would collaborate in advance to prepare for sharing case studies on subject matters (e.g. soil amendments; 4Rs, controlled drainage, variable rate technologies, cover crops, two stage ditch design); likely including work from their existing projects. These groups would meet in person early during the session to deepen their discussion and then share with the larger group to discover what should be adjusted or integrated for advancement at the large Symposium. A focus will be to develop a framework useful to producers interested in adopting systems management approaches that maintain or enhance productivity and profitability while reducing the nutrient exports that cause adverse water quality impacts such as hypoxia and harmful algal blooms. Anticipated breakout focus areas are: The Great Lakes (excluding Lake Erie), Lake Erie, Ohio River Watershed, Upper Mississippi River Basin, Missouri River Watershed, and Lower Mississippi River Basin.