Soil degradation causes a shrinking of arable land resources, and the persistence of starvation and malnutrition. The depletion is compounded by the increasing populations of developing tropical nations, and the conversion of agricultural land to other uses. As a result, per capita grain harvesting and irrigated land is in steady decline all over the world.
The decrease in horticultural resources and productivity has inspired Soil Quality and Agricultural Sustainability, which is based primarily on papers presented at the 1996 conference on soil degradation, sponsored by Ohio State University, the USAID and the International Agricultural Research Centers. The book addresses itself to six concerns: basic concepts and global issues, nutrient and water inputs, soil quality management in Asia, in Africa, and in the Tropical Americas, and future priorities.
The Editor's goal is a new paradigm in soil quality research: a multidisciplinary approach. He proposes that an erosion management program include soil scientists, hydrologists, climatologists, sedimentologists, geographers, agronomists, agricultural engineers, land use planners, economists, anthropologists and social scientists. Lal advocates an optimistic, forward-thinking brand of soil science that concentrates on conservation and fertility.
The 26 chapters explore what Lal considers to be the priorities: agricultural sustainability, soil quality, food security, quality restoration, long-term management, and the failure to adopt new technology. In sum, they paint a comprehensive portrait of the current state, and future prospects, for worldwide agronomic viability.
Soil Quality and Agricultural Sustainability -R. Lal
Soil-Land Degradation: Interventions for Sustaining Civilization-F.P. Miller
Assessment of Soil Quality-M.J. Mausbach and C. A. Seybold
Minimum Data Sets Needed for Soil and Climatic Characterization-J.M. Kimble
Strategies for Fertilizer Research in the Tropics -B.H. Byrnes and D.T. Hellums
Sustainable Management of Land and Water Resources in Irrigated Semiarid and Tropical Regions -J.W. Kijne and M. Kuper
Addressing Key Natural Resource Management Challenges in the Humid Tropics Through Agroforestry Research-D.P. Garrity
The Biological Management of Tropical Soil Fertility: Some Research and Development Priorities for Africa -P.L. Woomer, J. Kotto-Same, M.A. Bekunda, and J.R. Okalebo
The Role of Soil Management in Improving Yields in the Rice-Wheat Systems of South Asia -K.F. Bronson and P.R. Hobbs
Sustainable Management of Soil and Water Resources in the Upper and Trans-Gangetic Plains of India-B.S. Ghuman and R.S. Narang
Soil Fertility Management for Sustained Production in the West Asia-North Africa Region: Need For Long-Term Research-J. Ryan and Mohamed Abdel Monem
Soil-Conservation and Sustainability of Agricultural Systems in Sub-Saharan Africa-B. Kayombo and G.C. Mrema
Consequences of Soil Erosion on Soil Productivity and Its Restoration by Soil Management in Tanzania-J.B. Aune, I.K. Kullaya, M. Kilasara, F.S.B. Kaihura, B.R. Singh, and R. Lal
The Role of Ruminant Livestock in Soil Fertility Management in Sub-Saharan Africa-J.W. Smith and A. Naazie
Maintenance of Soil Organic Matter and Nitrogen Supply in the Moist Savanna Zone of West Africa-R.J. Carsky, S.S. Jagtap, G. Tian, N. Sanginga, and B. Vanlauwe
Grow the Soils to Grow the Crops in Africa-G.D. Anderson
No Till and Mulching Effects on Soil Physical Quality of a Tropical Alfisol in Western Nigeria-R. Lal
Research Strategies for Sustainable Agriculture in Acid Savanna of Latin America-R.R. Vera
Long-Term Research on Natural Resource Management: A "Commodity Center" Perspective-J.W. White, O. Erenstein, L. Harrington, and K. Sayre
Agricultural Intensification Systems and Their Impact on Soil and Water Quality in the Cerrados of Brazil-D.V.S. Resck
Production Systems in the Savannas of Brazil: Key Factors To Sustainability-C.R. Spehar
Physical and Economic Model Integration for the Measurement of Environmental Impacts of Farming-C.C. Crissman and J.M. Antle
A Decade of Progress at IBSRAM and Future Priorities-E.T. Craswell
The Pilot Linkage Program: An Experiment to Enhance Interinstitutional Collaborations-C.R. Curtis
Research Priorities for Sustainable Use of Soil and Water Resources-G.Uehara
Need for Action and Researchable Priorities-R. Lal