IUSS Alert 59 (March 2010)

Information for and from the global soil science community

Council Meetings at the World Congress of Soil Science

Council Meetings at the World Congress of Soil ScienceMeetings of IUSS Council will take place during the World Congress of Soil Science in Brisbane August 1-6, 2010. Fully paid up National Members are requested to nominate to their representative at the Council Meetings as soon as possible. Nominated representatives of National Members will receive all information relevant to the Council Meeting and be able to vote during these meetings. Key matters to be discussed will be: revisions to Statutes and Bye-Laws; the potential selection of the host country for the WCSS in 2018; the scope of the IUSS prizes. Please send details of your National Member representative to Stephen Nortcliff at

ICSU Asia and the Pacific - call for information

ICSU Asia and the Pacific - call for informationThe recently established ICSU Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific has identified four priority areas for research and action: 1. Hazards and Disasters, 2. Ecosystems and Society. 3. Sustainable Energy, 4. Urban Health and Well Being. They are seeking to establish a database of groups or individuals from within the region who research in these key areas. Would any research groups or individuals from the Asia and Pacific region with a focus on the above priority areas please send me brief details of their group and the activities no later than 10th March, 2010. Please mail Stephen Nortcliff, IUSS Secretary General at For further information see www.icsu-asia-pacific.org

ICSU Statement on the IPCC

ICSU Statement on the IPCCAs a scientific organization with global representation and active engagement in global environmental change research including climate change, the International Council for Science (ICSU) has been closely following the ongoing controversy concerning the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Important issues have been raised in relation to both the interpretation of scientific knowledge, especially in making predictions of future developments, and the procedures used by the IPCC in its assessment. This statement is endorsed by the Officers of the International Council for Science (ICSU, February, 2010). ICSU is a non-governmental organization representing a global membership that includes both national scientific bodies (119 members) and international scientific unions (30 members). The statement does not necessarily represent the views of all individual Members. See www.icsu.org.

New Publications

Soil and Culture. Landa, Soil and Culture. Landa, image008cEdward R.; Feller, Christian (Eds.) Springer 2010Edward R.; Feller, Christian (Eds.) Springer 2010, 524 p. Hardcover. ISBN: 978-90-481-2959-1.. Soil has been called the final frontier of environmental research. The critical role of soil in biogeochemical processes is tied to its properties and place/porous, structured, and spatially variable, it serves as a conduit, buffer, and transformer of water, solutes and gases. Yet what is complex, life-giving, and sacred to some, is ordinary, even ugly, to others. This is the enigma that is soil. Soil and Culture explores the perception of soil in ancient, traditional, and modern societies. It looks at the visual arts (painting, textiles, sculpture, architecture, film, comics and stamps), prose & poetry, religion, philosophy, anthropology, archaeology, wine production, health & diet, and disease & warfare. Soil and Culture explores high culture and popular culture, from the paintings of Hieronymus Bosch to the films of Steve McQueen. It looks at ancient societies and contemporary artists. Contributors from a variety of disciplines delve into the mind of Carl Jung and the bellies of soil eaters, and explore Chinese paintings, African mud cloths, Mayan rituals, Japanese films, French comic strips, and Russian poetry.

Trace Elements in SoilsTrace Elements in Soils. P. Hooda (Ed). Hardcover.592 pages. April 2010, Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN: 978-1-4051-6037-7. Trace elements occur naturally in soils and some are essential nutrients for plant growth as well as human and animal health. However, at elevated levels, all trace elements become potentially toxic. Anthropogenic input of trace elements into the natural environment therefore poses a range of ecological and health problems. As a result of their persistence and potential toxicity, trace elements continue to receive widespread scientific and legislative attention. Trace Elements in Soils reviews the latest research in the field, providing a comprehensive overview of the chemistry, analysis, fate and regulation of trace elements in soils, as well as remediation strategies for contaminated soil.  Written as an authoritative guide for scientists working in soil science, geochemistry, environmental science and analytical chemistry, the book is also a valuable resource for professionals involved in land management, environmental planning, protection and regulation. 

Soils, Plants and Clay Minerals. B. Velde & P. Barre. SpringerSoils, Plants and Clay Minerals. B. Velde & P. Barre. Springer. ISBN 978-3-642-03498-5. Harcover, 349 pp. This book considers the inter-relations between plants and minerals in an entirely new way, in that it introduces the notion of eco-engineering: i.e. the manipulation of the mineral world by the living world to the ends of the living world. These inter-relations are the basis for traditional agriculture and should be the basis for new, ecologically oriented land management disciplines, including agriculture itself. These relations also have an impact on surface geochemistry and determine pollution problems. A better understanding of this concept will lead to a renewed consideration of surface environmental problems.

Electrochemical Remediation Technologies for Polluted Soils, Sediments and GroundwaterElectrochemical Remediation Technologies for Polluted Soils, Sediments and Groundwater. K.R. Reddy & C. Cameselle. Wiley, October 2009. Hardcover, 732 pages. ISBN: 978-0-470-38343-8. Electrochemical technologies are emerging as important approaches for effective and efficient pollution remediation, both on their own and in concert with other remediation techniques. Electrochemical Remediation Technologies for Polluted Soils, Sediments and Groundwater provides a systematic and clear explanation of fundamentals, field applications, as well as opportunities and challenges in developing and implementing electrochemical remediation technologies. Written by leading authorities in their various areas, the text summarizes the latest research and offers case studies that illustrate equipment, installation, and methods employed in real-world remediations. Divided into nine sections, the coverage includes: Introduction and fundamental principles, Remediation of heavy metals and other inorganic pollutants, Remediation of organic pollutants, Remediation of mixed contaminants, Electrokinetic barriers, Integrated (coupled) technologies, Mathematical modeling, Economic and regulatory considerations, Field applications and performance assessment. Unique as a comprehensive reference on the subject, Electrochemical Remediation Technologies for Polluted Soils, Sediments and Groundwater will serve as a valuable resource to all environmental engineers, scientists, regulators, and policymakers.


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