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SCI Environment Medal and Lecture – Is it possible to measure soil quality?

Professor Stephen Nortcliff

21 Sep 2017

Venue: SCI, London, UK
Date: Tuesday 28 November 2017

SCI’s Environment Health and Safety Group are pleased to announce that Professor Stephen Nortcliff will receive the SCI Environment Medal at an event held in his honour on Tuesday 28 November 2017. Professor Nortcliff is Emeritus Professor of Soil Science at the University of Reading having retired as Professor of Soil Science in 2011 after thirty three years at the University of Reading.

As part of this evening event, Professor Nortcliff will give a lecture titled Is it possible to measure soil quality? The lecture will briefly review the developments in the attempts to establish measures of soil quality and question whether these efforts have made any significant contribution to increasing the protection and sustainable management of soils. While soil scientists may think they have made progress in this area, questions still need to be asked:

  • Has there been any impact beyond the Soil Science community?
  • Is a single measure of soil quality possible?
  • Do attempts to derive a single soil quality measure undermine the value of such approaches?

Recent developments in the concept of ecosystem services have provided a much more focused approach to quantifying the quality of soils to the functioning and performance of human and natural systems, which may provide a more rational way of determining soil value and ensure that there is wider understanding of the value of soils to many aspects of our lives.

This is a free event and will be of particular interest to agriculture advisors and scientists, farmers and growers, soil scientists, environmental scientists, soil ecologists, soil microbiologists, chemists working in the area of soil analysis, those involved in the area of soil improvers and those involved in sewage sludge re-use.

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