Soil Science In Australia 2015 Internation Year of Soil special publication 

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PhD studentship in Scotland - applications invited to December 31 2014.  Further information 
PhD opportunity in New Zealand - applications now open.  Further information 
Two Technical Officer roles in the NSW DPI Soils Unit:
 one ongoing role based in Tamworth or webpage 
and one fixed term full time role with the possibility of extension in Narrabri. or webpage      

canwsdlaunchCanberra - the very first official World Soil Day event to be held in the world
Major General the Hon. Michael Jeffery AC, AO (Mil), CVO, MC (Retd) Prime Minister's Advocate for Soil Health

The Hon. Ms Penelope Wensley AC HFEIANZ Patron, Soil Science Australia
Dr Richard Doyle Immediate Past President Soil Science Australia
Dr Richard Stirzaker Author of Out of the Scientist’s Garden: a story of water and food
Jodie Pipkorn Canberra City Farm President
joined guests to celebrate the launch of the Soil Science Australia 2015 IYS edition of the Soil Science in Australia
magazine and the 2015 International Soils calendar at the recently established Canberra City Farm learning hub in Turner ACT.

qld minister ian walker and vp katharine brown

In Queensland Science and Innovation Minister Ian Walker launched the Soils Globe, an interactive user-friendly tool that lets users view and explore maps and up-to-date satellite imagery of Queensland soils, as well as download reports and data. The release of this tool is commended as a fitting way to mark the milestone of World Soil Day and prepare for the UN International Year of Soil in 2015. Mr Walker said 'Soils Globe gave free access to world-class knowledge via the Queensland Globe, an interactive platform that merges open data with digital technology.The Soils Globe was developed by soil scientists at the Department of Science, Information Technology, Innovation and the Arts and the Department of Natural Resources and Mines. It contains data from 90,000 soil sample sites across the state as well as historical information'.Senior Soil Scientist Dr Katharine Brown with Jacobs, a major engineering and consultancy company which works closely with the resources sector in Queensland, praised the Queensland Government for establishing the Soils Globe.“This will save us time in research review and soil investigation, which equates to cost-savings, which we will pass on to our clients.” Other beneficiaries of the Soils Globe include local government authorities, land developers, community organisations and residents.

The Soils Globe is available at  

ssa nsw branch wsd celebrations 5dec 2014In New South Wales Soils of the World were the focus for a live presentation and webinar to celebrate World Soil Day. Topics and speakers included “Soils and landforms of the United Arab Emirates”  David Morand – Wollongbar“Soils from the Russian wheat fields and the permafrost of Siberia” Brian Murphy – Parramatta“Soils, land use and erosion in Iceland - Roy and Lisa Lawrie  - Parramatta
“Soil Knowledge Network SKN  -  Who we are and where we bin round the world”   Greg Chapman & John Lawrie - Parramatta
“Global Distribution of World Reference Base Soils” Jon Gray - Parramatta.

The event was held in Parramatta New South Wales and webinar technology allowed interested people in Western Australia, Queensland, the ACT and Victoria to join the event. 

dust storm qld 5 december maggie den ronden 1

Queensland dust storms clouds World Soils Day
As a dramatic dust storm strips hundreds of tonnes of top soil from the Queensland agricultural community of Bedourie, the President of the Soil Science Australia (Qld), Dr Gillian Kopittke, has called the event “a cruel irony, especially as it comes on the day and in the year that celebrates how all our food begins in the soil”.

“That area around Bedourie has long been a part of the cattle droving routes and is fast growing a reputation for top-quality organic lamb. Whether you like your steak grain fed or grass fed all that food begins with a healthy soil. Sadly, this storm will mean the loss of hundreds of tonnes of the basic ingredient of everything we eat”, Dr Kopittke noted from a Brisbane gathering of soil scientists to celebrate United Nations designated World Soils Day and the beginning of the International Year of Soil.

Responding to the incredible images of rolling clouds of dust towering over Bedourie, Dr Kopittke stated “Soils takes millennia to form and this dust storm blew away hundreds of years’ worth in one 90 minute event.”

“Storms such as this are not just a rural issue or a farmers issue, they are an issue for everyone who eats and that’s all of us. What is more, Australia has real ambitions to be the food bowl of Asia, which is a great ambition for our economy and trade. But to feed them and us we need productive soils pushing up healthy crops and pastures. Along with clean water and sunlight, soil is essential to life and to see so much of it striped off our land is an obvious concern. The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations has stated that sustainable soil management could produce up to 58% more food.”

“Our soils are in great danger. They are being eroded by wind, as you can see, and covered in concrete by urban expansion. As scientists, we know how a lot about how to manage them and deal with the challenges, but Governments, land managers and the broader community need to recognise the preciousness of our soil and all work together to protect it.”

brisbane    bundaberg   townsville   

Soil Science Australia events in Brisbane, Toowoomba, Townsville, Bundaberg and Cairns.

 img 2696   qldcake

World Soil Day cakes in Canberra and Queensland

Western Australia is marking World Soil Day to raise the awareess of the critical role of soils in food production with the Department of Agriculure and Food Crop Production Systems director Mark Sweetingham saying that soil productivity continued to be a big challenge for agriculture. Four new projects funded by GRDC form a collaboration, 'Soil Constraints West', to develop strategies to manage water repellent soils, combat soil acidity and nutrient toxicities, and how to minimise the impact of soil compaction.  Department officer and Federal President of Soil Science Australia, Tim Overheu, said the International Year of Soils would be marked in 2015, with the aim to increase awareness and understanding of the importance of soil for food security and essential ecosystem functions.  “A WA Soil Science Conference along with a range of other activities are planned in 2015 to highlight the critical role of soils,” Mr Overheu said.





Congratulations to the 2014 Soil Science Award winners:

JA Prescott Medal - Dr Jeff Baldock                                                     LJH Teakle Medal - Mr Bruce Carey                                                              
CG Stephens Medal - Dr Alla Marchuk                                                 Publication Medal - Dr Shu Kee (Raymond) Lam                               
Soil Science Australia Fellowship - Dr Pichu Rengasamy

  UPCOMING EVENTS IN SOIL SCIENCE   Members should register for events via their member portal.  Non members can register via the Public Registration portal 

  2015 ENVIRONMENTAL SOLUTIONS FROM SOIL SCIENCECanberra and districts, a field trip that demonstrates a suite of environmental solutions facilitated through soil science practice.  Join this two day soil science field trip, discussion and a day of papers to explore the theme “Environmental Solutions from Soil Science” 16th and 17th April 2015 (Thursday-Friday): Canberra.  Call for extended abstracts (2-4 pages) due 16th February 2015.  Meeting organiser Dr Richard Greene, Fenner School of Environment and Society, Australian National University, Canberra:, booking via the Soil Science Australia website (registrations open December 2014),   Key words: environment remediation, contamination, rehabilitation, training; government involvement; land management and soil carbon.

 2015 CURRENT ISSUES FOR SOIL SCIENCEMoree and districts to experience first-hand the current issues for soil science with genetically modified cropping regimes resulting in soil loss by erosion and through an introductory session, get an update on NSW Government policy for the BSAL mapping, also known as Biophysical Strategic Agricultural Land capability mapping.  Discussion on the BSAL will clarify the role and requirements of site assessment by CPSS accredited scientists.  23rd and 24th July 2015 (Thursday-Friday): Moree.  Visit field sites hosted by soil scientists who work in the Moree district and contribute to the discussions through paper presentations.   Call for extended abstracts (2-4 pages) due 5th June 201.  Meeting organiser, Greg Chapman:, booking via the Soil Science Australia website (registrations open January 2015) at

 Soil Science Australia Members - 20% Discount on CSIRO Publishing Book Titles and Personal Journal Subscriptions -  Conditions for this offer are a) the 20% discount will apply to the RRP off all book titles (no further discount for titles already on sale).  b) discounted journal subscriptions are for personal use only; the discount does not apply to institutional journal subscriptions  c) to receive the 20% discount, members need to identify themselves as belonging to ASSSI at the time of purchasing CSIRO PUBLISHING products. For online purchases members should add 'Soil Science Australia Member’ to the Special Instructions field when completing the Delivery & Payment Details  d) Members must claim their discount at the time of purchase; no refunds will be applied after the subscription or book order has been processed.  Orders can be placed by members contacting the Customer Service team via, phone 1300 788 000 or placing their order via our


 2015 European Field Trip September 8-15 2015 

eARTh project website launched   Sponsors and supporters welcomed.

Profile NEWSLETTER    August 2014 Low Resolution (2MB)     August 2014 High Resolution (13MB)


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The Society has begun using a new membership management system that will allow members to manage their details online. The system has been tested for several weeks and has been easy to use. The membership data has been transferred successfully and a pilot test saw data easily retrieved and updated.

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