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IUSS Alert 175 (January 2020)

IUSS Alert 175 (January 2020)


IUSS Stimulus Fund – first call for submissions 2020

IUSS has established an annual Stimulus Fund to support suitable activities within its Commissions and Working Groups. Where appropriate, the Fund will also support other activities to assist the development of soil science generally but particularly in regions of the world where lack of resources limit opportunities. Applications should be sent to iuss@umweltbundesamt.at. The initial application process requires a short written proposal of no more than 500 words plus a budget indicating how the funds awarded are to be spent. The normal maximum award will be USD 2,500.

Submission Deadline: March 15, 2020

Read more: https://www.iuss.org/index.php?article_id=594


Paleopedology Newsletter – December 2019 Issue available

The most recent newsletter of IUSS Commission 1.6 and INQUA is now online. It covers past and upcoming conferences and meetings, an overview of new publications and an article from Steven G. Driese et al. on the development of geochemical paleoclimate proxies and pedotransfer functions for paleosols and a number of other invited contributions.

Read more: https://www.iuss.org/newsroom/newsletters/paleopedology-newsletters-commission-16/


Jan Gliński (1933 – 2020)

Jan Gliński was a professor of soil science and agrophysics. He was born in Pińsk (now Belarus) on April 4, 1933. He was a prominent scientist and noble-minded man. During 1987-2003 he was the Director of the Institute of Agrophysics of the Polish Academy of Sciences. In 1986, Vice-Chairman of the Committee of Physics in the International Soil Science Society (now the International Union of Soil Sciences). Honorary member of the Soil Science Society of Poland and Honorary Member of the International Union of Soil Sciences (since 2006). He passed away on January 9, 2020 in Lublin.

By Members of the Soil Science Society of Poland


General News

Soil newsletter of FAO/IAEA

The Soils Newsletter Vol.42 No.2, January 2020 of FAO/IAEA is now available and contains a number of interesting articles including one on Antimicrobial movement from agricultural areas to the environment: A role for nuclear techniques.

Read more: https://www.iaea.org/publications/14670/soils-newsletter-vol42-no2-january-2020


Innovation Awards Roullier 2020

The Innovation Awards Roullier 2020 is an international contest in Plant & Animal Nutrition rewarding the two best projects with a €75,000 grant each. This year the soil is at the center of the plant nutrition competition.

Registration until February 29, 2020

Read more: https://www.innovation-awards-roullier.com/


Can soil microbes slow climate change?

With global carbon emissions hitting an all-time high in 2018, the world is on a trajectory that climate experts believe will lead to catastrophic warming by 2100 or before. Some of those experts say that to combat the threat, it is now imperative for society to use carbon farming techniques that extract carbon dioxide from the air and store it in soils. Because so much exposed soil across the planet is used for farming, the critical question is whether scientists can find ways to store more carbon while also increasing agricultural yields.

Read more: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/can-soil-microbes-slow-climate-change/

[From: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Science Policy Report: 8 January 2020]


Ancient soil from secret Greenland base suggests Earth could lose a lot of ice

In one of the Cold War’s oddest experiments, the United States dug a 300-meter-long military base called Camp Century into the ice of northwest Greenland in the early 1960s, powered it with a nuclear reactor, and set out to test the feasibility of shuttling nuclear missiles beneath the ice. A constant struggle against intruding snow doomed the base, which was abandoned in 1966. But Camp Century has left a lasting, entirely nonmilitary legacy: a 1.3-kilometer-long ice core drilled at the site.

Read more: https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/10/ancient-soil-secret-greenland-base-suggests-earth-could-lose-lot-ice?fbclid=IwAR0uuz2O7W22qxdIEuAIJp1B9aOrTQn3hgGuGN9F2nnXRyI84mp2A2IQmxI


Soil study shows Australia at its most stripped back

New research from The Australian National University (ANU) and Geoscience Australia could provide a much clearer picture of the Australian landscape, and how to better manage it under a changing climate.

Read more: https://phys.org/news/2019-12-soil-australia.html?fbclid=IwAR1LrB-1UASgumG5sxiIncpT4aqS7Y5-cmDFg7ZgWVrXBM61KLG72zRgUuw


Invitation to questionnaire on research priorities of soil scientists

A NERC-BBSRC funded research project is being carried out by researchers at Cranfield, Lancaster, and Nottingham Universities to identify the extent to which soil science currently contributes towards several industries, including water management, waste management, agriculture, ecosystem services and natural resources. The researchers are particularly interested in exploring whether the research priorities of soil scientists correspond with the priorities identified by those within the industries we are investigating, and how soil scientists could better meet these research needs in the future. The short questionnaire should take no longer than 5-10 minutes to complete. The researchers would be happy if you could circulate this to your colleagues within soil science. They hope that this research will help to identify knowledge gaps, and avenues for future research within soil science.

Link to questionnaire: https://cranfielduniversity.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_2iu911f34OdiAw5 


Conferences, Meetings and Workshops


Soil as a Landscape

Nature, crossings and immersions, new topographies

20-21 Febuary 2020

The Fondazione Benetton Studi Ricerche promotes and organizes on Thursday 20th and Friday 21st February the 16th edition of the International Landscape Study Days, devised by the Scientific Committee of the Fondazione, and coordinated by Luigi Latini and Simonetta Zanon. This year the theme explored will be Soil as a Landscape. Nature, crossings and immersions, new topographies.

Soil “and” landscape: an apparently simple, predictable combination. However, the growing interest in the topic of land urges further investigation, which will be pursued in the study days by dealing with soil “as” a landscape. Soil is commonly dealt with, and rightly so, in terms of consumption, by taking only quantitative data into account and referring to the multifold forms of land impoverishment carried out by society in recent times. However, we seldom focus on the very nature of soil in its various environmental, ecological, aesthetic and social aspects. Hence, during the study days, soil will be regarded as the connective tissue, nourishment and vital process of our life experiences. After all, the essence of inhabited places and the very meaning of our belonging to the landscape lie precisely on soil.

Read more: http://www.fbsr.it/ or http://www.fbsr.it/en/landscape/international-landscape-study-days/


Intersoil 2020 – International Conference on Soil, Sediments and Water – programme now available

Soil as a solution in facing the big challenges and reaching the goals for the planet”

2 – 3 March 2020, Brussels, Belgium.

Major themes: Soil as a solution for health; Soil as a solution for agriculture and food; Soil as a solution for biodiversity; Soil as a sustainable resource; Soil as a solution for energy and climate; with three subthemes: Legislation, methodology and governance; Technical responses (good interactive and harmonious practices); Economic, social and communication responses.

Call for papers until January 31, 2020

Read more: https://www.webs-event.com/webs/en/event/intersoil/


5th International Conference on Contaminated Land, Ecological Assessment and Remediation CLEAR2020

13-15 May, 2020, Middlesex University, London, United Kingdom

The Contaminated Land, Ecological Assessment and Remediation Conference Series (CLEAR) provides an international platform for scientists, consultants, and policy makers to interact. The CLEAR biennial series has become one of the leading environmental events gathering stakeholders presenting state-of-the-art research and addressing emerging environmental issues as a result of rapid industrial development.

Deadline for abstract submission: January 31, 2020

Download the flyer: https://www.iuss.org/media/flyer_a4_call_for_abstracts_v3.pdf

Read more: http://clear2020.mdx.ac.uk/


ENSOr 2020 2nd International Workshop: Emerging policy challenges on new SOil contaminants

18-19 May, 2020, Mechelen, Belgium

During this second two-day workshop we will focus on Contaminants of Emerging Concern (CEC) in soil, sediment and groundwater. The first day will consist of a multitude of plenary sessions during which researchers, policymakers, environmental experts and industry will focus on how they are coping with CEC nowadays. At the end of day 1, a global panel debate will be organized. The second day we will debate in parallel sessions on challenges faced in daily practice, taking into account new findings and the conclusions from the first ENSOr-congres.

Read more: www.2mpact.be/ensor2/


100 years of agricultural experimentation at the Faculty of Agriculture and Biology at the Warsaw University of Life Sciences in Warsaw

May 20-22, 2020, Warsaw and Skierniewice. Poland

Deadline for Submission of abstracts: January 31, 2020

Download the 2nd flyer: https://www.iuss.org/media/announcement_no._2_v_2.pdf

Read more: http://sggw2020.pl


4th International Workshop on Intelligent Systems for Agriculture

Production and Environment Protection (ISAPEP’20)

22 or 23 June 2020, Polytechnic University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain

This workshop will focus on the use of intelligent systems to overcome the lack of productivity of farming systems and environmental degradation in natural, urban and human-transformed environments.

Paper submission deadline: 25 March 2020

Conference website: http://isapep.ucam.edu/


XIVth International symposium and field workshop on paleopedology (ISFWP-XIV)

Paleosols, pedosediments and landscape morphology as archives of environmental changes

13-23 August 2020, Russia, Altai

Payment should be made until March 1, 2020

Scientific coverage of academic sessions and field workshop (18-23 August) will include soil, geomorphic, sedimentary archives/records/memory of environmental changes; specificity of different types of paleoenvironmental archives and their correlation.

Preliminary list of sections (main topics) for the scientific symposium:

  • Loess-, alluvilal-, colluvial-, tephra-paleosol sequences: case studies, specific features for different types of paleoenvironmental records, correlation between different types of soilsedimentary records, and with other paleoenvironmental archives.
  • Paleosols and pedosediments of human habitats.
  • Surface paleosols and relic features in contemporary surface soils.
  • Pre-Quarternary paleosols: paleoenvironment and diagenesis.

Download the second circular: https://www.iuss.org/media/2_circular_xiv-isfwp-2020.pdf

Read more: http://isfwp.100igras.ru/


Eurosoil 2020 Early Bird Registrations Now Open

24-28 August 2020, Geneva, Switzerland

In order to welcome as many delegates as possible, those from low and middle income countries as well as students can register at an even further discounted Early Bird rate.

Early Bird Registration Deadline: 28 May 2020

Read more: https://eurosoil2020.com


1st International Joint Congress on “Sustainable Management of Cultural Landscapes in the context of the European Green Deal”

7 – 10 October 2020, Santo Stefano di Camastra, Italy

On behalf of the ESSC (European Society for Soil Conservation), the EURECYS (European Ecocycles Society) and the Organizing Committee, we are pleased to invite you to attend the 1st International Joint Congress on “Sustainable Management of Cultural Landscapes in the contest of the European Green Deal”.

The objective of the congress is to shed new light on critical issues concerning the exploitation of ecosystem services, conservation of cultural heritage and to assess new perspectives to the future development of the cultural landscapes in the context of the European Green Deal.

The Congress is open to scientists, students, educators, managers, policy and decision-makers. It will consist of invited lectures, scientific sessions with oral and poster presentations, and a scientific and cultural excursion.

Contact: Prof. Carmelo Dazzi, carmelo.dazzi@unipa.it

Download the 1st Circular: https://www.iuss.org/media/1st_circular_letter_essc-ees_2020_invitation.pdf

For the complete list of upcoming events, please see the event calendar on the IUSS website: https://www.iuss.org/meetings-events/


New publications

The Soils of India

By Mishra, Bipin B. (Ed.), Springer, World Soils Book Series, 2020. 281 pages, Hardback ISBN: ISBN 978-3-030-31082-0, price € 171.17.

This book provides an overview of the diversified soil regimes in India. In addition to the historical advances in soil research and its limitations, it describes the monitoring of various soil conditions and soil uses to improve productivity. Discussing topics such as climate, geology and geomorphology, major soil types and their classification, soil mineralogy and clays, soil micromorphology, soil biogeochemistry, benchmark soils, land evaluation and land use planning, soil health and fertility and soil resilience, the book highlights the multiple uses of soils in industry, human health care, mitigation of challenges due to climate change and construction. It also presents measures for a brighter future of soil science in India, such as imposing organic farming principles toward sustainable agriculture in the context of the second green revolution besides alleviating the poverty and providing the employment opportunities among the farming communities in India.

Read more: https://www.springer.com/de/book/9783030310806


China’s Soil Pollution and Degradation Problems

By Claudio O. Delang, Routledge, December 12, 2019, 146 pages, ISBN 9780367878290, price hardback £45.00, paperback £17.00.

This book provides an overview of the problems related to soil degradation and pollution throughout China, examining how and why current policy has fallen short of expectation. It also examines the challenges faced by policy makers as they attempt to adopt sustainable practices alongside a booming and ever-expanding economy. China’s Soil Pollution and Degradation Problems utilizes grey literature such as newspaper articles, NGO reports and Chinese government information alongside academic studies in order to provide an extensive review of the challenges faced by grassroots organizations as they tackle environmental policy failings throughout China.

Read more: https://www.crcpress.com/Chinas-Soil-Pollution-and-Degradation-Problems/Delang/p/book/9780367878290


Soil Microenvironment for Bioremediation and Polymer Production

By Nazia Jamil, Prasun Kumar, Rida Batool (Eds.), Wiley, December 2019, 420 pages, eBook: ISBN 978-1-119-59217-4, Price £153.99, hardcover: ISBN: 978-1-119-59205-1, Price £171.00

The book consists of 21 chapters by subject matter experts and is divided into four parts: Soil Microenvironment and Biotransformation Mechanisms; Synergistic effects between substrates and Microbes; Polyhydroxyalakanoates: Resources, Demands and Sustainability; and Cellulose based biomaterials: Benefits and challenges. Included in the chapters are classical bioremediation approaches and advances in the use of nanoparticles for removal of radioactive waste. The book also discusses the production of applied emerging biopolymers using diverse microorganisms.


Edafología: uso y protección de suelos (Soil Science: soil use and protection)

By Dr. Jaume Porta, Dr. Rosa M. Poch and Dr. Marta López-Acevedo, 4th edition published by Mundiprensa on 29 November 2019, 624 pages, ISBN: 9788484767503. Price Paper 56.05 EUR, eBook: 14.99 EUR.

The book’s objective is the training of professionals to be more prepared and motivated to face the challenges of sustainably producing sufficient and healthy food despite multiple and growing environmental problems, soil being a fundamental factor. It can be used for education of students at basic and advanced level. The 4th edition benefits from the multilingual dictionary of soil science and revisions from several soil specialists.

Read more: https://www.paraninfo.es/catalogo/9788484767503/edafologia–uso-y-proteccion-de-suelos



financially supported

SM150T – Research grade soil moisture and temperature sensor __________________________________________________

  • Research grade build and performance at a great price
  • Soil moisture ± 3% accuracy
  • Built-in temperature sensor
  • Robust and buriable – IP68

The SM150T is a highly dependable sensor with exceptional salinity and temperature stability. It achieves moisture accuracy of ±3% (after soil specific calibration) and the built-in temperature sensor achieves 0.5°C accuracy. It is built to withstand long term burial – the sensor, connectors and cable are all environmentally protected to IP68.

The SM150T is a dual purpose probe – it can be used portably (with readout unit) for instant moisture readings, or left installed in the soil for continuous logging – to provide long-term moisture and temperature data. The SM150T can be logged by any Delta-T Devices data logger and by many loggers from other manufacturers (simple 0-1 V output).

The SM150T is provided with general calibrations for mineral and organic soils. A two-point soil specific calibration can be performed for greater accuracy if required.

More information on the SM150T


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