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The Brazilian soil quality determined by geotechnologies: mapping, interpretation and agricultural/environmental applications: a legacy for society

Grant number: 21/05129-8
Support type:Research Projects - Thematic Grants
Duration: February 01, 2022 - January 31, 2027
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Agronomy - Soil Science
Principal researcher:José Alexandre Melo Demattê
Grantee:José Alexandre Melo Demattê
Home Institution: Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz (ESALQ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Piracicaba , SP, Brazil
Assoc. researchers:Benito Roberto Bonfatti ; Carlos Eduardo Pellegrino Cerri ; Carlos Ernesto Gonçalves Reynaud Schaefer ; Elpidio Inacio Fernandes Filho ; Fabrício da Silva Terra ; Fernando Dini Andreote ; Luiz Eduardo Vicente ; Marcio Rocha Francelino ; Marcos Rafael Nanni ; Marilusa Pinto Coelholacerda ; Maurício Roberto Cherubin ; Nilton Curi ; Paulo Cesar Sentelhas ; Peterson Ricardo Fiorio ; Quirijn de Jong van Lier ; Sérgio Henrique Godinho Silva


This project will use data and technologies developed in the thematic project 2014-2262-0, to optimize its use for all Brazilian community and its international insertion, with a brand new objective. Follow. With our need to address global existential challenges of food, water, and energy security, maintaining biodiversity, guard human heath, and address climate change mitigation and adaptation, there has never been a more important time to focus on how soil is functioning to aid civilization. As soil quality and soil health are a primary component of the solution to these challenges. Despite the efforts of the scientific society in various areas (conservation, microbiology, fertility, planning, among others), there is no way forward, without the basis of the whole process, the soil, being properly understood.. In recent article, The Guardian journal indicated that the deforestry, burning, global warming and the necessity to preserve them, took media and public politics to focus on plant and climate. On the Other hand, the soil is proportionally treated as a simple supporting actor, despite that inside has a tremendous and new world on diversity, where its dynamics impact directly on food security, clean water, carbon stock and climate change ( ) For this, it is necessary to obtain thematic data of soil attributes, from the topsoil to subsoil, as a primary source for its understanding. The general context of this proposal is to determine the SQ of Brazil through geotechnologies, and to evaluate its relationship with issues of national interest such as land use, agriculture and climate change. To achieve this goal, the project will have as innovation the development of an integrated methodology via geotechnologies + geoprocessing + pedotransfer + soil-functions that allows to map, with high spatial resolution (30 m) the SQ of the topsoil and subsoil of the whole Brazilian territory. In this context, remote sensing data and machine learning algorithms with cloud processing will be used to evaluate the SQ with agricultural and environmental factors. The study area has coverage for the entire geographical extension of Brazil. The methodology comprises obtaining SQ indicators from the acquisition and harmonization of data from the FAPESP thematic project (2014/22262-0) and the FEBR bank, to adjust models and perform spatial predictions (0-5, 5-15, 15-30, 30-60 and 60-100 cm depth) using covariates from remote sensing, digital soil mapping and pedotransfer. Such indicators will be interpreted using non-linear transformation equations: "more is better", "less is better", and "optimal midpoint". Subsequently, the indicators will be weighted, according to the soil functions each represents, and integrated, through an additive approach, into a SQ index for each of the five indicated depths. The SQ maps will be validated from 50 pilot areas (smaller areas with greater control) established in strategic regions of Brazil. The maps will also be evaluated (by crossing) with: I) land use and land cover maps, generated by MapBiomas for the period 1985 to 2019; II) maps of soybean production potential generated in this project, and; III) with maps of future climate projections obtained by WorldClim between 2021 and 2100. The information generated by this project will be made publicly available from an interactive web tool that will be developed in the final stages of the schedule. The legacy of this data will be directly to the whole Soil Science community, as well as to institutional projects such as PronaSolos and Agrotag. Furthermore, it is worth mentioning that the area of SQ is relatively new and incipient in Brazil, justifying the initiative. (AU)

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