Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Urban Soils Quality and Compost

16.10.2013
With higher populations and limited space, urban areas are not often thought of as places for agriculture.

A recent surge in community gardens, though, is bringing agriculture and gardens into the cities. And certain byproducts of urban life – food and yard waste and municipal biosolids – can benefit those gardens, and the soils in them, tremendously.

Sally Brown, associate professor at University of Washington will discuss the use of compost and biosolids in urban agriculture on Tuesday, Nov. 5 at 9:35 am. Her talk, Urban Soil Quality and Compost, is part of the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America Annual Meetings, Nov. 3-6 in Tampa, Florida. The theme of this year’s conference is “Water, Food, Energy, & Innovation for a Sustainable World.” (www.acsmeetings.org)

Urban soils can present various obstacles for gardeners. Sometimes, the soils are contaminated, most commonly with lead. Also, many community gardens are built on vacant lots. Because those soils were misused or abandoned, they are often unhealthy and compacted.

“These soils have been treated like dirt,” says Brown. “They’ve been ignored in terms of growing things, and often buildings or cars have been sitting on top of them.”

The U.S. Composting Council recommends that soils contain at least 5% organic matter, a number that soils in many urban areas fall below. The addition of compost and biosolids can raise organic matter and in turn improve the structure of the soil and the amount of water it can hold. Compost and biosolids also slowly release nutrients that crops need.

In addition to making soil healthier, compost can also help decrease contaminants in the soil. By mixing in compost, contaminants are diluted out. And some contaminants, such as lead, often become less hazardous when compost is added to the soil.

“Compost can change the form of the lead in soil so that if you actually do ingest the soil, the amount of lead that’s available to do harm is reduced,” explains Brown.

In Tacoma, Washington, the reuse of a byproduct is already providing great benefits to urban growers. The city provides a biosolids-based soil product to gardeners free of charge giving growers the motivation and tools they need. Since 2010, Tacoma has built nearly 30 new urban gardens. Brown wants to see more cities realize the potential of their byproducts and use them to help residents grow fresh produce close to home.

Media Invitation: Members of the media receive complimentary registration to the joint meetings.

Contact: Susan V. Fisk, 608-273-8091, sfisk@sciencesocieties.org. Please RSVP by October 25, 2013

If you would like a 1-on-1 interview with Brown, contact Susan Fisk at the email above.

Susan Fisk | Newswise
Further information:
http://www.sciencesocieties.org

Further reports about: Little Brown Bats Science TV Soil Soil Science Urban Soil Quality

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product
02.12.2016 | Purdue University

nachricht New findings about the deformed wing virus, a major factor in honey bee colony mortality
11.11.2016 | Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

NTU scientists build new ultrasound device using 3-D printing technology

07.12.2016 | Health and Medicine

The balancing act: An enzyme that links endocytosis to membrane recycling

07.12.2016 | Life Sciences

How to turn white fat brown

07.12.2016 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>