IUSS Alert 56 (December 2009)

Information for and from the global soil science community

New IUSS Bulletin

IUSS Bulletin 115IUSS Bulletin 115 is now available on the website. In this Bulletin two articles (Soil science gains voice in the US Government by Karl Glasener, and Chemical Contaminants as a factor of soil-subsurface metagenesis by B. Yaron, I. Dror and B. Berkowitz). The five questions to a soil scientist are answered by: Alex McBratney, Stephen Nortcliff and Juan Ibanez whereas Christian Walter, Anthony Young and Alain Ruellan discuss their favourite books. Further in this  Bulletin several obituaries, reports of meetings and conferences, and a list of new publications.





Ask a soil scientist

Ask a scientistAsk a Soil ScientistThe Soil Science Society of America developed a 'Ask a Soil Scientist' program. If you have any question on soils, soil science, and careers in soil science, this is the place to get answers. And, teachers, if you'd like to arrange for a soil scientist to visit your classroom, this is the place to make a request. Your question(s) will be sent to a Soil Science Society of America member, in your region. As our members are volunteers with this program, please allow 24-48 hours for a response. www.soils.org/lessons/ask


EGU Session

Rainfall simulation as a tool for soil erosion and soil hydrology studies. Convener: Artemi Cerda, co-Conveners: Peter Fiener , Xinping Wang , Rob Loch , Lee MacDonald , Fred Pierson, EGU 2010.  Rainfall simulators are being used since the 30's by scientists and technicians to study the soil erosion and soil hydrology. They were and they are one of the most used and most successful tools for Agronomist, Hydrologist, Geomorphologist, and others related disciplines. They move from simple drop-formers and nozzle to sophisticated apparatus, from small to large, and from mechanical to electronic devices. Rainfall simulators speed up the research as they allowed repeated and multiple measurements. They give opportunities to a more controlled and more accurate measurements, and they are plenty of advantages. However, when mismanagement and misunderstanding take place rainfall simulators can result in disadvantages and waste on time and money.  The session on 'Rainfall simulation as a tool for soil erosion and soil hydrology studies' will join researchers that used simulated rainfall experiments as a main tool to investigate soil erosion and soil hydrology. A special attention will be paid to the rainfall simulators design, construction and use, the experimental design and the measurement of the rainfall characteristics. Research on soil erosion and soil hydrology by means of rainfall simulators (from drop former to large plot rainfall simulators) will be shown. http://meetingorganizer.copernicus.org/EGU2010/session/2493

Couple of New Publications

Organic Farming, Pest Control and Remediation of Soil PollutantsOrganic Farming, Pest Control and Remediation of Soil PollutantsOrganic Farming, Pest Control and Remediation of Soil Pollutants. Lichtfouse, Eric (Ed.) 2010, X, 418 p., Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-4020-9653-2. Sustainable way for humans and their children. Sustainable agriculture is a discipline that addresses current issues such as climate change, increasing food and fuel prices, poor-nation starvation, rich-nation obesity, water pollution, soil erosion, fertility loss, pest control, and biodiversity depletion. Novel, environmentally-friendly solutions are proposed based on integrated knowledge from sciences as diverse as agronomy, soil science, molecular biology, chemistry, toxicology, ecology, economy, and social sciences. Indeed, sustainable agriculture decipher mechanisms of processes that occur from the molecular level to the farming system to the global level at time scales ranging from seconds to centuries. For that, scientists use the system approach that involves studying components and interactions of a whole system to address scientific, economic and social issues. In that respect, sustainable agriculture is not a classical, narrow science. Instead of solving problems using the classical painkiller approach that treats only negative impacts, sustainable agriculture treats problem sources. Because most actual society issues are now intertwined, global, and fast-developing, sustainable agriculture will bring solutions to build a safer world. This book series gathers review articles that analyze current agricultural issues and knowledge, then propose alternative solutions. It will therefore help all scientists, decision-makers, professors, farmers and politicians who wish to build a safe agriculture, energy and food system for future generations.

image008fLandform - Structure, Evolution, Process Control. Landform - Structure, Evolution, Process ControlProceedings of the International Symposium on Landform organised by the Research Training Group 437. Series: Lecture Notes in Earth Sciences , Vol. 115 Otto, Jan-Christoph; Dikau, Richard (Eds.) 2010, XII, 258 p. 134 illus., 14 in color., Hardcover ISBN: 978-3-540-75760-3. The book presents a selection of papers given at the International Symposium on 'Landform - structure, evolution process control', Bonn, June 2007. The meeting brought together senior experts and young researchers from various disciplines working on landform related issues in order to discuss the crucial role played by landform as a boundary surface between atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, pedosphere and lithosphere. The book combines introductory/overview papers and case studies. The case studies present various new approaches towards a better understanding of the role of landform as a boundary surface. Additionally, new methods of handling, modelling and visualisation of landform data (incl. digital elevation models, weather forecasting models, hydrological models, and ecological models) are presented.


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