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 Alkaline soil, sensible sensor
03.08.2017 | American Society of Agronomy

nachricht New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>