Have you ever stopped and looked at the soil under your feet? Leonardo da Vinci said: “We know more about the movement of celestial bodies than about the soil underfoot.” However, our very existence as humans – and our existence on the planet is inextricably linked to the health of a tiny layer of soil that surrounds the Earth.
Soils provide society with essential foods, feed, fiber, and raw materials, in addition to being the habitat for more than a quarter of Earth’s biodiversity. The soil is also the most extensive organocarbon reservoirs on Earth and, despite being extremely dynamic, they are also fragile. Take a tree down, and it may reseed within 50 years, but the soil will be destroyed by 10 cm, and prepare to wait for 1000 years for it to be back. Without soil, the planet would look like nothing to us, and would look more like the barren, inhospitable planet of Moon as well as Mars.
Up until recently, we didn’t even realize the depth of soil beneath our feet. As with all mysteries, a bit digging is necessary so that soils can be comprehended and their past to be exposed.
If they are visible, there are a variety of questions that come up. What does the change in color with depth indicate? The amount of carbon that is stored? Do you think the soil is dense, thin, unhealthy or damaged? It is vital to answer these questions; however, it presents a huge problem that could take years of education.
Online soil resources
Researchers who are working on Open Soil Science technology and data met recently in the Netherlands to discuss the latest and future advancements in soil science for citizens. Through creating electronic tools that are openly accessible, we are hoping to be able to share the secrets of soil with the wider community and increase the accessibility and accessibility of soil data and knowledge of soil properties around the world. This will allow us to develop specific strategies for conserving the precious resource.
Soil Explorer landscape technology makes it possible to comprehend the soil’s properties. Darrell Schulze, Purdue University Author, supplied
If you’re interested in learning what is happening to the soil you live in, the SoilGrids system offers open access to a wide range of soil characteristics as well as soil kinds. The web-based World Soil Information Service ( WoSIS) as well as The virtual world Soil Museum offer information on a variety of soil profiles across the globe and high-resolution images of soil profiles and specific explanations of each soil horizons.
These sites (and there are a lot more) can be a good beginning point to know the soil, so that landowners and farmers can better understand the factors that contribute to the development of soils and how it affects the ecosystem’s health and functioning like carbon storage.
Different users might have different expectations of soil-related apps. Gardeners and farmers on the field are usually fascinated by soil fertility, and educators in classrooms might be looking to explain the soil’s the role of soil in the huge natural diversity in landscapes around the world.
No matter what expectations the user may have and expectations, using applications for smartphones and other online resources can aid people to explore and comprehend the many possibilities and aspects of soil, bringing to light its beauty, variety, and significance of this largely ignored natural resource.
It is the mySoil application, which was developed through the British Geological Survey in 2012 It aims at bringing awareness of the variety of soil characteristics across Europe and also provides the ability to gather photographs and data about the soils surrounding you. The app is intended for people who are not experts. More than 50,000 users are studying soils in their vicinity and have submitted greater than 4000 photos around the world.