Scoop up some soil in your hands and consider there are more organisms in that handful of soil than humans who have ever lived. Soil is a living entity in its own right, a community of micro- and macro-organisms that interact with the earth’s mineral resources to create this complex entity that undergirds all life on the planet. The 54th Nobel Conference, Living Soil: A Universe Underfoot, invited participants to consider the vast diversity and complexity of soil, and to ponder the challenges we face in protecting this most fundamental resource.
What is soil health, and what processes sustain healthy soils? What interactions connect the living entities in the soil, and how do these interactions shape natural systems? How will climate change affect soils, and (how) can soils be used to mitigate rising levels of carbon in the atmosphere? How do we develop sustainable agricultural practices that will protect against soil erosion and promote soil health? How might we best promote exploration of beneficial compounds from soils? How might we re-imagine our relationship to soil culturally and socially, as well as biologically? These are just some of the questions that Nobel Conference 54 addressed.
Gustavus Adolphus College
- Seven Presentations
- 5 hours 30 minutes
- Four Panel Discussions
- 2 hours 7 minutes
Additional conference information and resources are located here.