Posts

Asia contains many of the most fertile soils on the planet. PHOTO: Sasin Tipchai from Pixabay

Asia has its first ‘soil atlas’

It was created by the FAO Global Soil Partnership together with the Joint Research Center of the EU Commission. The tool will help to better understand the characteristics of the different soils of the continent. Among them, some of the most fertile on the planet. The food future of humanity depends on their sustainable management
Grazing may have negative effects in warmer arid areas with highly seasonal rainfall and lower biodiversity Photo: John Coppi, CSIRO Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0)John Coppi, CSIRO Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0)

Climate and biodiversity impact the effect of grazing on soil

Positive impacts of grazing on soil become negative as temperatures rise, an international research says. A more diversified vegetation presence helps offset the issue
A fungus, called Metarhizium robertsii, is reportedly able to remove mercury around plant roots. Photo: Chengshu Wang and Yuxian Xia Attribution 2.5 Generic (CC BY 2.5)Chengshu Wang and Yuxian Xia Attribution 2.5 Generic (CC BY 2.5)

Mercury pollution is not a problem (as long as we use this fungus)

A fungus that can break down mercury-based organic forms into less toxic inorganic substances protects plants by allowing them to survive in contaminated soils, a Sino-American study has found
MRIDA, or soil in Hindi, is an application developed to estimate carbon sequestration potential. Photo: AS Rao, ICRISAT Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)AS Rao, ICRISAT Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

A new soil app from India can teach you climate-smart agriculture

Helping farmers and decision makers in developing climate-smart practices in soil management. That's the goal of MRIDA, the new app created in India to assess the carbon sequestration potential of different agricultural strategies
Australia is home to some of the driest soils in the world. Photo: Peripitus Own work, copyleft: Multi-license with GFDL and Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-2.5 and older versions (2.0 and 1.0)Peripitus Own work, copyleft: Multi-license with GFDL and Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-2.5 and older versions (2.0 and 1.0)

Australia set to establish a national soil database

Starting from 2023, the new platform promoted by the government agency CSIRO will provide information on essential features such as climate change adaptation, carbon sequestration, and biodiversity
Sustainable agriculture made a crucial contribution to the development of the Maya society. Photo: Diego Delso Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)Diego Delso Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Sustainable agriculture was crucial for ancient Maya’s society

Proper soil and agricultural management enabled the growth of settlements originating in southern Mexico in ancient times, environmental DNA study by U.S. researchers has found
By applying the technique on a large scale, researchers say, it would be possible to address the problem of global soil pollution. Photo: Marco Verch https://www.flickr.com/photos/30478819@N08/51093188777 Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/Marco Verch https://www.flickr.com/photos/30478819@N08/51093188777 Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Australian researchers mimic plants to clean up soil

Through solar-powered evaporators, the presence of heavy metals in soil can be significantly reduced. The solution, developed by the University of South Australia, could find application in other contexts and for other substances
By sending electricity from solar energy panels to a set of buried electrodes, it is possible to stimulate the reaction of soil bacteria. Photo: Antalexion Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)Antalexion Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Researchers believe microorganisms can help us store energy in the soil

By using the action of microorganisms, it is possible to store energy in the soil, British researchers say. This solution could reduce the overall impact of traditional batteries. But for large-scale application we will still have to wait for some time
With the use of a spectrometer, drones allow effective mapping of soils inaccessible by land. Photo: David Rodriguez Martin Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)David Rodriguez Martin Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Drones open a new frontier in soil mapping

Drones equipped with light spectrometers can map the ground and explore otherwise inaccessible areas, Dutch researchers have found. This application can also provide crucial data for soil protection and remediation
The application of agroecology principles in livestock farming may be a turning point for the sustainability of the UK food supply chain. Photo: Peter Standing Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)Peter Standing Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Meat can be sustainable thanks to agroecology

According to the Soil Association in Edinburgh, the transition to agroecology in agriculture and livestock paves the way for a lower-impact production system. But extending the practice on a large scale requires a change in diet