Briefly about: Improving soil with compost

An option for improvement of elaborated peat-free soil conditioner formula can be adding composted material. But what is compost?

A mixture of different organic minerals (organic residues, soil organic residues) which are modified by organism action is called compost. It can be stacked, moistened, limed, organic or mineral fertilizers and biological preparations, etc. additives that promote biological processes and decomposition of organic compounds can be added to it. Composting is a human-regulated biological process in which organic matter (also different waste) is converted into humus-like material. Composting not only reduces the amount of waste, but also reduces the use of mineral fertilizers. Good compost improves soil structure and provides plants with the necessary nutrients, it is used to improve soil properties, as a fertilizer, as well as as a substrate in horticulture.

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Briefly about: Use of secondary raw materials in agriculture

Various fertilizers are used in agriculture to improve soil stricture and fertility, many of them are industrially produced fertilizers, which are produced first by extracting minerals and then processing them. For example, for the production of phosphorus fertilizers, more than 130 million t of phosphorus-containing minerals are extracted and further treated with acids or heat treatments. In order to reduce the consumption of resources and energy, as well as the amount of existing waste, it is also possible to use secondary raw materials in agriculture. Many organic fertilizers not only contain plant nutrients but also improve soil structure.

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Submission of scientific paper in “Engineering”

A scientific article has been prepared in collaboration with Estonian colleagues and is submitted for the publication in scientific journal “Engineering“:

Vincevica-Gaile Z., Teppand T., Burlakovs J., Kriipsalu M., Krievans M., Jani Y., Klavins M., Setyobudi R.H., Grinfelde I., Rudovica V., Mersky R.L., Tamm, T., Shanskiy M. (2021) Circular economy approach for soil stabilization in peatlands: Choice of secondary raw materials. Engineering, [in press]

Briefly about: Soil salinity and salinization – a global problem

Soil salinity (the content of salts in soil) and salinization (an increase of salinity due to various reasons) is one of the most common forms of soil degradation and is considered to be a major cause of desertification. This problem has been intensified by climate change with rising temperatures and decrease of precipitation.

Soil salinity occurs when water-soluble salts accumulate in or near the upper horizons of the soil. These salts contain K+, Mg+, Ca+, Cl, SO42-, CO32-, HCO3 and Na+ ions (mostly these salts are sodium chlorides and sodium sulphates). When soils accumulate the exchangeable sodium, this process is called sodification. If Mg+ and Ca2+ ions are accumulated in the soil, an alkalization process takes place and the soil becomes alkaline (with a pH above 8.5).

As a result of salinization, soil structure degrades and is more exposed to water and wind erosion, soil compaction, soil crust formation, soil desertification, soil fertility decreases, agronomic productivity decrease, the soil buffering capacity against pollution decreases, plant nutrient uptake is impaired, soil biota biodiversity is reduced and also groundwater quality is affected.

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Participation at Eco-Tech 2020

On March 23-25, 2020, the 12th International Conference on the Establishment of Cooperation between Companies and Institutions in the Nordic Countries, the Baltic Sea Region and the World Eco-Tech 2020 was digitally arranged and held in Sweden.

Linnaeus Eco-Tech has been an academic tradition since 1997. The conference is organized by Linnaeus University in Kalmar, Sweden, every second year. One of the main goals of the conference is to promote research and education cooperation among the countries around the Baltic Sea towards sustainability. It has been more and more obvious that the environmental issues have risen from local through regional to global concern, and play a leading role in the conference.

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Contribution at CAJG 2020

On November 2-5, 2020, the 3rd Conference of the Arabian Journal of Geosciences (CAJG 2020) was arranged online and held in Tunisia. Participation in this conference was carried out by being a member of the scientific committee. Reviews of several submitted scientific papers were performed as well as discussions on the topics related to environmental issues were attended online.