30th Congress of the Soil Science Society of Poland

The 30th Congress of the Soil Science Society of Poland “Soil – source of life”, was held on September 1-5, 2019, at the Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin, Poland.

The event was attended by nearly 200 participants, mostly from Polish research centers, but also from Lithuania, Russia, Belgium and Hungary. The special guests of the Congress was the president-elect of the International Union of Soil Science (IUSS) prof. Laura Bertha Reyes Sanchez from Mexico, and honorary members of the Soil Science Society of Poland (SSSP) – Sergey Goryachkin, Stanisław Kalembasa, Jerzy Marcinek, Stefan Skiba and the honorary President of SSSP Piotr Skłodowski.

As part of 3 plenary sessions, 9 oral sessions and 2 poster sessions, a total of 57 oral presentations and nearly 100 posters were presented. The Congress was opened with lectures by prof. Magdalena Frąc – “Importance of biodiversity in soil environment” and prof. Jean Pousen – “Soil Erosion in the Anthropocene: do we still need more research?”, introducing the subject of the Congress. Oral presentations were grouped in thematic sessions: Soil as the source of life; The role of soil in sustainable development; Genesis, systematics and cartography of soils; Impact of use on soil properties and processes; Contemporary threats to soil functions in the environment and human life. The presenters showed many interesting research results, scientific concepts and methodological issues.

Prof. Cezary Kabała, who presented the assumptions of the new Polish Soil Classification, and prof. Przemysław Charzyński, who characterized the current state and prospects of soil science education, were invited to show their presentations in the closing session of the Congress. Prof. Laura Bertha Reyes Sanchez showed a presentation outlining the challenges facing IUSS in the coming years.

An indispensable element of the Congress was the field trip, which was organized in the Nałęczowski Plateau and around Puławy town. Trip participants could learn about the forms of ravine erosion in the Rogalów area, analyze the erosion processes in the catenary system, deepen their knowledge of the geology of the Lublin Upland, observe the unique soil profiles made of glauconite clays and try to determine the relationship between soil properties and the taste and aroma of local wines. A valuable discussion on the taxonomic position of soils in Polish and international classifications took place at each of the soil profiles.

A significant number of participants took part in the two-day post-conference trip. The first day covered issues related to the functioning of organic soils in the Poleski National Park. On the second day, differently used soils of the Roztoczański National Park were presented, and then, at the Rogów Farm, one could learn about the soil non-tillage technique and its significance for soil processes today.

A valuable addition to the scientific part of the Congress were more or less official social meetings, as well as visits to the Old Town in Lublin and Zamość.

All materials from the Congress, as well as links to photographs can be found at the Congress website. 

author: Piotr Bartmiński