In the context of the forest ecosystems management, we consider soil as a complex biological system fundamental for their formation, resistance and resilience. We consider soil as a natural capital analyzing the mechanisms underlying its fertility and the main stressors. We also consider the ecosystem services obtainable from the management of forest soils. With this perspective the main types of soil characterizing forest ecosystems are analyzed.
Sequi p, Ciavatta C, Miano T. Fondamenti di Chimica del Suolo. Patron ed. Bologna
Tan KH . Principles of soil chemistry Forth Edition (2011) CRC press , Taylor and Francis eds,
Pinton R,Cocucci M, Nannipieri P, Trevisan M.. Fondamenti di Biochimica Agraria. Patron ed. Bologna
Chesworth J.M., Stuchbury T.,. Scaife J.R. An Introduction to Agricultural Biochemistry. Springer, Dordrecht eds.
Supplementary teaching material inherent to the issues addressed during the course is provided by the teacher
Skills acquired at the end of the course: knowledge of the mechanisms underlying the functionality of the soil and of the main driving forces that can influence it. Fertility maintenance and recovery actions also considering the bioremediation techniques of polluted soils
Expected learning outcomes:
• knowledge of the mechanisms underlying soil fertility;
• knowledge of intervention strategies to maintain or recover the fertility of degraded and / or polluted soils;
• knowledge of the environmental and human health risk of polluted soils;
• knowledge of ecosystem services obtainable from the management of forest soils.
Skills acquired (at the end of the course): forest systems management skills improvement in relation to the evaluation and actions design to improve or preserve of soil fertility in order to implement the forest ecosystem adaptability to environmental changes and its ecosystem services provisioning capacity
Basic knowledge of inorganic and organic chemistry, microbiology are required
Total hours of the course: 144
Hours reserved for personal study and other indivual formative activities: 96
Number of hours relating to classroom activities: 40 of which 22 of general lessons, 12 of seminars, 6 for the preparation of the project to for the final exam.
Number of hours related to practice activities: 8
Frequency of lessons and exercises not mandatory but recommended
Teaching aids: Video projector, PC, overhead projector, laboratories.
Type of Assessment
Oral exam based on the presentation of a project prepared by the student. During the exam, the ability to apply the knowledge acquired in dealing with the topic dealt with in a critical sense and the competence in the use of an appropriate technical-scientific language will be assessed.
As part of the degree course focused on forest systems ecological management, soil is considered a complex biological system fundamental for their formation, resistance and resilience. In relation to this capacity, the mechanisms for implementing this capacity are analyzed by discriminating between the concepts of functionality and fertility. The evolution of soil fertility is studied by distinguishing between chemical-physical and biological fertility, examining the methods of interaction between the abiotic and biotic component and their ecological relevance. The different ways of induction and maintenance of fertility in the soils considered are examined, recalling the concepts of functionality, resistance, resilience, redundancy, stability-, plasticity- and genetic erosion. The relevance of the different bacteria adaptation strategies (r-k strategy and bet hedging strategy) in guaranteeing soil functionality is then analyzed. The relevance of biogeography studies with metagenetic and metagenomic approaches is assessed to determine the influence of the main environmental parameters on soil fertility. To get a complete picture, the main types of soil characterizing forest ecosystems are analyzed in relation to soil and climatic and anthropic parameters. Finally, the concept of soil as a natural capital is highlighted by highlighting the ecosystem services obtainable from the management of forest soils. In this context, the main intervention strategies are analyzed to maintain or recover the fertility of degraded and / or polluted soils. For the latter, environmental and human health risks are also assessed.
The seminarial activities focussing on aspects of particular interest which for this year concerns:
• The main types of analyzes useful for soil characterization: which and why. Dr. Laura Giagnoni (DAGRI-UniFi)
• The role of soil in forest ecosystems in the balance between carbon storage (CO2) and greenhouse gas emissions (NO, CH4 and CO2). Dr. Alessandra Lagomarsino (CREA);
• The role and management of urban green for the well-being of the population. Prof. Francesco Ferini (DAGRI UNiFi);
• New "old" pollutants: plastics. Prof. Giacomo Pietramellara (DAGRI-UniFi);
• The recovery of polluted soils through phyto-remedy and phyto-stabilization techniques. Dr. Laura Giagnoni (DAGRI-UniFi);
• Soil genetics and its ecosystem relevance. Prof. Donatella Paffetti (DAGRI-UniFi):The exercise activity concerns the use of the RISKNET environmental risk assessment model in areas with polluted soils (Dr. Laura Giagnoni DAGRI-UniFi);
The pracical activity concerns the use of the RISKNET environmental risk assessment model in areas with polluted soils (Dr. Laura Giagnoni DAGRI-UniFi);
The acquired skills application takes place through the development of a project design for intervention on a real or simulated case chosen by the student. The activity involves analyzing the problem, identifying the target to be achieved and developing an intervention plan. This activity will be carried out by the individual student (or by groups of students) under the supervision of the teacher. The elaborated formulation will then be displayed during the exam.