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Bacteria that can convert gaseous nitrogen to ammonia provide the nutrients plants need and regenerate the soil. Photo: Oleksandr, Pexels Free to usePhoto: Oleksandr, Pexels Free to use

‘Protected’ bacteria replace chemical fertilizers

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MIT scientists have developed a coating to protect and 'package' bacteria, making them transportable from the production lab to the field. Where they become an alternative to fertilizers
Soil conservation maximizes the potential of agriculture while limiting emissions. Photo: Matthias Ripp CC BY 2.0 DEED Attribution 2.0 GenericPhoto: Matthias Ripp CC BY 2.0 DEED Attribution 2.0 Generic

“Soil care is crucial to ensure food security”, WEF says

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To meet growing food demand while capturing proper volumes of greenhouse gases, soil health must be a priority, says the World Economic Forum. Precision agriculture is essential
The presence of antibiotic-resistant genes in microbes is particularly high in soils subjected to cultivation or farming. Photo: Pxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution requiredPxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution required

Analysis of soil microbes is a major tool against antibiotic resistance

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A study of soil microbes gets started in Ireland. The metagenomic survey, by the VistaMilk research center, aims to identify microorganisms that benefit the soil
Microplastics are a dangerous and widespread contributor to soil pollution. Photo: Oregon State University CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 GenericOregon State University CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic

Tomography helps detect microplastics in soil

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A German research team has developed a new method for detecting microplastics. The technique employs neutron beams and X-rays to generate a complete image
Every year sand and dust storms bring 250 Great Pyramids of Giza into the atmosphere ©UN Photo/Blagoje Grujic ©UN Photo/Blagoje Grujic

Growing sandstorms. 25% are human-related

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UNCCD: The problem of sand and dust storms is exacerbated by poor land and water management, drought and climate change. Choosing the correct agricultural practices can stem them
Over the past 12,000 years, 2.7 billion tons of phosphorus have reportedly accumulated in lake sediments around the world. Photo: Pxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution requiredPhoto: Pxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution required

The phosphorus problem started thousands of years ago

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A Swiss study found that humans began altering the phosphorus cycle many millennia ago. Before industrialization and the spread of fertilizers accelerated the process
There are still nearly 377 million acres of intact grasslands in the Great Plains of North America. Photo: Ammchale CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 InternationalAmmchale CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International

Canada and U.S. have lost 130,000 km2 of grasslands in ten years

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According to WWF's latest study, in the past year, grasslands have ceded nearly 6,500 km2 of soil to conversion. With obvious consequences for carbon release
Le colture di copertura permettono di limitare la perdita di carbonio negli oliveti mediterranei che presentano alti tassi di erosione. Foto: Pxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution required

In olive groves, cover crops reduce carbon loss by 76%

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University of Córdoba study: use of these crops reduces soil carbon loss in Mediterranean olive groves by more than 75 percent
Drought alert. Water shortages could increase significantly, particularly in the Mediterranean and Eastern Europe. Photo: Roberto AI CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 DEED Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 GenericRoberto AI CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 DEED Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic

Europe will be facing drought more often

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The Commission has made available a database and a continental atlas of drought risk. A study of past data reveals negative predictions: the phenomenon will occur more often in the future
Nanoparticles allow pesticides to be applied directly where they are needed while reducing the amount used. Photo: Pxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution requiredPhoto: Pxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution required

Nanoparticles are a sustainable weapon against soil pests

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According to the University of California, the use of plant-derived nanoparticles can reduce the amount of pesticides used and the chances of soil contamination