This publication summarises current evidence and provides background information to raise awareness of atmospheric nitrogen deposition in the UK, where it is coming from, where it is affecting semi-natural habitats, the impacts on habitats, plants and fungi, and how it is recorded.
Over the past 50 years, human activity has caused significant changes to the world’s ecosystems. Dependency on manufactured nitrogen-based fertiliser to increase crop yields significantly and produce feed for livestock contributes to changes in the global nitrogen cycle. Levels of reactive nitrogen have tripled in Europe and doubled globally in the last century. This is causing unprecedented changes to nutrient cycles and is driving widespread eutrophication of ecosystems and biodiversity loss, exacerbating climate change and causing significant human health impacts.
The paper provides further information sources that set out what can be done by different stakeholders to address this issue.