Environmental Studies Program


Date of this Version

Spring 2016


Environmental Studies Undergraduate Student Thesis, University of Nebraska–Lincoln, 2016


Copyright © 2016 Erik Doran


This study was performed to identify changes in agricultural practices throughout Nebraska between 1997 and 2007, a period of large ethanol production growth. By identifying ethanol plant locations and using county level data for variables such as bushels of corn produced, fertilizer and chemical application, agricultural cropland, cattle population and Conservation Reserve Program enrollment, percent change was calculated, mapped and graphed. The results did not show any evidence of change that could be linked to the ethanol plant locations.

This study did not take into account advances in management practices or improvements in technology the study time period. These changes increased ethanol production and reduced the inputs required thus reducing the impact of ethanol production on the environment.