Recent advances in control technologies for non-point source pollution with nitrogen and phosphorous from agricultural runoff: current practices and future prospects

Yinfeng Xia, Ming Zhang, Daniel C.W. Tsang, Nan Geng, Debao Lu, Lifang Zhu, Avanthi Deshani Igalavithana, Pavani Dulanja Dissanayake, Jörg Rinklebe, Xiao Yang, Yong Sik Ok

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

46 Citations (Scopus)


Eutrophication of natural water is a universal problem. Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) from agricultural runoff are the main sources of nutrient input, provided that emissions from industrial point sources (IPS) are under control. Therefore, it is of great environmental importance to reduce pollution associated with agricultural runoff as a means of regulating eutrophication levels in natural water. Numerous methods proposed for treating agricultural runoff can be classified into three categories: source control, process control, and end treatment. In this review, major technologies for N and P control from agricultural runoff are summarized along with discussion of newly proposed technologies such as biochar biomimetics and microbial catalyst. Because agricultural runoff (from farmlands to receiving waters) is a complicated pollution process, it is difficult to regulate the nutrients discharged via such process. This review will thus offer a comprehensive understanding on the overall process of agricultural runoff and eutrophication to help establish control strategies against highly complicated agricultural non-point sources.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8
JournalApplied Biological Chemistry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020


  • Black carbon
  • Charcoal
  • Eutrophication
  • Phytoremediation
  • Soil organic matter
  • Sustainable development goals
  • Water and wastewater treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Organic Chemistry

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