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Soils of marginal lands – definition, assessment and land use options
Convener: Werner Gerwin  | Co-Conveners: Wibke Dr. Baumgarten , Federica Barbera , Diego Mattioli 
 / Tue, 25 Apr, 08:30–12:30
 / Attendance Tue, 25 Apr, 17:30–19:00

Land is partially considered as marginal for various reasons often with regard to soil properties and soil degradation. Parts of these marginal lands are former agricultural lands which are now set aside as a result of economic changes or soil degradation. Other parts of these lands are unused sites with naturally low soil fertility or after severe disturbances. The definitions of such sites differ widely and also their potentials with regard to soil fertility and resulting usability are manifold.
However, the growing demand for biomass on the one hand and the also rapidly growing need for fertile sites for food production on the other hand offer large conflict potentials. Thus, marginal sites could be an additional pool of land to be used for producing renewable resources and for minimizing this conflict. Vice versa adapted land use concepts could be tools for reclaiming marginal lands and optimizing soil fertility. For assessing potentials clear definitions of marginal lands as well as suitable assessment tools are necessary. As soil fertility is the most important indicator for marginality proper estimation procedures are required. Based on soil assessments sustainable land use strategies have to be developed for using marginal lands.
This session invites contributions dealing with the problems of marginality definitions as well as with soil properties of marginal sites and with the problem of assessing soil fertility generally. We welcome papers presenting concepts or results of innovative and sustainable land use strategies for marginal site. In addition, papers addressing potential impacts of land use concepts as reclamation approach for marginal lands on soil properties would be much appreciated.

Public information: Solicited speakers:
Saori Miyake (TU Darmstadt, Germany) /
Calliope Panoutsou (Imperial College London, UK)