International Union of Soil Sciences

IUSS Alert 76 (October 2011)

IUSS President - Call for Nominations

At its Meeting held in August 2010 in Brisbane, the IUSS Council adopted new procedures for the election of the President of the Union. The key change that was made by Council at this meeting was to break the link between the role of the President of the Union and the organisation of the World Congress of Soil Science. The IUSS is now calling for nominations to the position of President. The person elected will take up the position as President-Elect in mid-2012, and will serve as a Senior Officer for a total  period of six years. Persons nominated should be internationally-recognised, leading soil scientists who possess and exhibit first-rate interpersonal and communication skills. Further details of the selection criteria to be used and the nominations procedure are on the IUSS web site   Nominations should be made by 17th January 2012.

Nomination for IUSS Honorary Members

Honorary Members can be nominated by any Full Member and the nomination material has to be sent to the Secretary General. The material shall not be more than 2 pages long and should show the background of the individual and his or her service to the IUSS and the impact that this person has had internationally on soil science. Elections shall take place by secret ballot among Council members present for the mid- congress meeting and the results announced in the Bulletin after the Mid-Congress meeting. The president will send a letter and a certificate to the elected Honorary Members informing them of their selection. The new honorary members will be recognized at the next Congress. Please send your nominations for IUSS Honoray Members to the Secretary General at   before 1st January 2012.

IUSS Inter Congress Meeting – June 2012

The Inter-Congress Meeting will take place on Jiju Island, Korea from June 30 to July 4 2008.  Full details together with registration forms will be available shortly. Please send items for discussion at the Business Meeting of Council. For more information see or contact the IUSS President Prof Jae yang at

No address, no communication

We like to have up to date information on the Officers of the National Soil Science Societies.  Many Societies change their officers annually, and in order to keep Member Societies informed details of current Office Holders, their postal addresses and current email addresses are needed.  Please mail details of your current Soil Science Society Officers to

New IUSS Bulletin

We welcome all contributions for the new IUSS Bulletin (no. 119). Please send your reports, short articles, news, views, minutes from national societies, soil anecdotes and other writings to before 7th November 2011.

Conferences, Symposia, Meetings

Second International Conference on Hydropedology, 22-27 July 2012, Leipzig, Germany.  The emerging field of Hydropedology is being developed from the need to improve our quantitative understanding of mass and energy fluxes within terrestrial systems, also denoted as the Critical Zone, and to recognize their feedbacks to soil-forming processes. The conference is intended to stimulated scientific advances by the coupling of various disciplines that historically have been separated. Specifically, soil science, including pedology, soil physics and soil biogeochemistry, is linked to hydrology across spatial scales, from the pore to catchment scale. Also recent scientific developments in the fields of Geophysics and Remote Sensing is discussed to catalyzed integration of the scientific fields. The Conference website is:

Couple of New Publications

Peatlands of the Western Guayana Highlands. Properties and paleogeographic significance of peats. Edited by J.A. Zinck and O. Huber. 2011. Springer, Ecological Studies Vol. 217. ISBN 978-3-642-20137-0. The Guayana Highlands in northeastern tropical America, rising from lowland rain forests and savannas up to 3000 m elevation, are characterized by ancient tablelands called tepuis. The peatlands that developed on the tepuis constitute unique and fascinating ecosystems and are the focus of this volume, which starts with an overview of tropical and subtropical peats, followed by an introduction to the geo-ecological features of the Guayana region as a whole, with special emphasis on the diversity of the vegetation cover from lowlands to uplands to highlands. The core subject centers on the properties and dating of the peat deposits and the interpretation of the chronological record in terms of past environmental changes. The well illustrated book will appeal to a broad range of scientists interested in tropical highland peats, including quaternarists, soil scientists, geomorphologists, geographers, geologists, ecologists, botanists, hydrologists, conservationists, and land use planners.

Soil Chemical Methods – Australasia. Australian Soil and Land Survey Handbooks Series. George E Rayment, David J Lyons. Illustrations, 520 pages, 245 x 170 mm, Publisher: CSIRO PUBLISHING, October 2010, Hardback, ISBN: 9780643067684. Price AU $140.00. Soil Chemical Methods – Australasia describes over 200 laboratory and field chemical tests relevant to Australasia and beyond. The information and methodology provided across 20 chapters is comprehensive, systematic, uniquely coded, up-to-date and designed to promote chemical measurement quality. There is guidance on the choice and application of analytical methods from soil sampling through to the reporting of results. In many cases, optional analytical ‘finishes’ are provided, such as flow-injection analysis, electro-chemistry, multiple flame technologies, and alternatives to chemical testing offered by near-range and mid-range infrared diffuse reflectance spectroscopy. The book supersedes and updates the soil chemical testing section of the 1992 Australian Laboratory Handbook of Soil and Water Chemical Methods of Rayment and Higginson, while retaining method codes and other strengths of that Handbook. Chapters cover soil sampling, sample preparation and moisture content; electrical conductivity and redox potential; soil pH; chloride; carbon; nitrogen; phosphorus; sulphur; gypsum; micronutrients; extractable iron, aluminium and silicon; saturation extracts; ion-exchange properties; lime requirements; total miscellaneous elements; miscellaneous extractable elements; alkaline earth carbonates and acid sulfate soils. In addition, there are informative Appendices, including information on the accuracy and precision of selected methods. This book targets practising analysts, laboratory managers, students, academics, researchers, consultants and advisors involved in the analysis, use and management of soils for fertility assessments, land use surveys, environmental studies and for natural resource management.

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