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Is Soil Science Dead and Buried? Future Image in the World of 10 Billion People

By walaa on January 26,2009


El-Sayed E. Omran  


        Is there a future for soil science? Yes, of course there is. The visions and images of soil science are changing. Human demand for environmental resources is quickly growing around the world. Food production must increase to meet the needs of an additional 3.5 billion people over the next 40 years. Population facing water scarcity will be doubled over the next 40 years. Land degradation and desertification problems, land use issues, global climate change, air and water quality, for example, are connected to soil. This incomplete list identifies a number of major challenges which are sufficient for any soil scientist to be interested in them. The aim of this vision paper is to through the light on the future image of soil science. The future image is not so bright if it is business as usual of traditional soil science. It is necessary to re-looking for the role of soil science in the society. Soil science plays an important role in detecting and solving environmental problems. In order to do so, and to successfully address these challenges, soil scientists will need to effectively participate in interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary studies without losing their own roots and identities. I do foresee the future of soil science if it is integrated with other fields. If we need to maintain our identity as soil scientists, there is a suggestion for a new type of soil science that is more holistic and in close relation with society needs.Keywords: Future soil science, environmental sustainability, environmental problems, farmer participatory, future generation research.

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