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Advances in Soil Science

15

  • B. A. Stewart

Part of the Advances in Soil Science book series (SOIL, volume 15)

About this book

Introduction

The study of soils has taken on increased importance because a rapidly expanding population is placing demands on the soil never before experi­ enced. This has led to an increase in land degradation. Land degradation is one of the most severe problems facing mankind. Volume 11 of Advances in Soil Science was devoted entirely to this critical area of soil science. The editors of that volume, R. Lal and B.A. Stewart, defined soil degradation as the decline in soil quality caused by its misuse by humans. They further stated that soil degradation is a major concern for at least two reasons. First, it undermines the productive capacity of an ecosystem. Second, it affects global climate through alterations in water and energy balances and disruptions in cycles of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur, and other elements. Through its impact on agricultural productivity and environment, soil deg­ radation leads to political and social instability, enhanced rate of deforesta­ tion, intensive use of marginal and fragile lands, accelerated runoff and soil erosion, pollution of natural waters, and emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. In fact, soil degradation affects the very fabric of mankind.

Keywords

Rainforest Soil fertility environment fertility forest forestry growth nitrogen nutrition plant growth soil science tropics

Editors and affiliations

  • B. A. Stewart
    • 1
  1. 1.USDA Conservation Production Research LaboratoryBushlandUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4612-3030-4
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag New York 1991
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-1-4612-7768-2
  • Online ISBN 978-1-4612-3030-4
  • Series Print ISSN 0176-9340
  • Buy this book on publisher's site