Soil-The Basis of All Terrestrial Life
Ancient civilizations and cultures-Mayan, Aztec, Mesopotamian, Indus, and Yangtze-were built on good soils, surviving only as long as soils had the capacity to support them. In the twenty-first century, productive soil is still the engine of economic development and essential to human well-being. The quality of our soil resources, however, is threatened by human-induced and natural perturbations.
World Soil Resources and Food Security takes an in-depth look at the availability and status of soil resources in the context of the growing demands of an increasing world population and rising expectations of living standards. This timely reference presents current information on the soil resources available for food production. Presenting innovative strategies for soil and water management, it discusses how to maintain or improve the world's soil resources in order to increase food production. With the majority of the world's 1.02 billion food-insecure people concentrated in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, several chapters focus on soil resources in these regions.
Contributions from renowned scientists deal with topics including:
Global food situations
World soil resources
Soil resources of humid Asia and their acidification
Soil resources of South Asia
Properties and management of Vertisols
Use of radioisotopic techniques in soil management
The potential of rain-fed agriculture in the semiarid tropics
The status of land degradation
Nutrient balance in sub-Saharan Africa
The book concludes by outlining the need for further research to generate credible data on soil resources and degradation. This volume is a useful resource for those interested in the state of the soils of the world in relation to food security and environmental quality.