State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

Soil Fertility

  • Revitalizing Africa’s Soils

    Revitalizing Africa’s Soils

    To feed our burgeoning global population, the world has to at least double crop yields by 2050, by improving seeds of high yielding crops and cultivating healthy fertile soils. A new on-the-spot soil testing kit will help meet this challenge.

  • Investigating Impacts of Increased Fertilizer Use in Africa

    Investigating Impacts of Increased Fertilizer Use in Africa

    The rains came late this year in Kenya. I was there for several months in the winter and spring to conduct research for a post-doctoral fellowship, examining the consequences of increases in fertilizer use on soil fertility, maize yields, nitrogen gas emissions and nitrogen leaching losses.

  • Why Soil Matters

    Why Soil Matters

    Soil is the source of all life. Yet “we know more about soils of Mars than about soils of Africa,” says Pedro Sanchez, director of the Earth Institute’s Tropical Agriculture and the Rural Environment Program. To remedy this situation, the Earth Institute is taking part in an ambitious undertaking to map the world’s soils.

  • Getting to the Root of Africa’s Agriculture Challenges: TropAg and AfSIS Partner to Improve Soil Fertility

    Getting to the Root of Africa’s Agriculture Challenges: TropAg and AfSIS Partner to Improve Soil Fertility

    Agrium Incorporated and The Mosaic Company have partnered with the Earth Institute’s Tropical Agriculture and Rural Environment Program (TropAg) to improve soil measurement and fertility throughout Sub-Saharan Africa.  The program will link the Millennium Villages Project to the African Soil and Information Systems Project (AfSIS) with the aim of assessing nutrient depletion in soil and…

  • Is Biomass Really Renewable?

    Is Biomass Really Renewable?

    Ninety percent of all existing biomass power plants use wood residue and there are currently 115 power plants in development that will burn biomass to generate electricity. But just how renewable is biomass energy?

Banner featuring a collage of extreme heat images.

Recent record-breaking heat waves have affected communities across the world. The Extreme Heat Workshop will bring together researchers and practitioners to advance the state of knowledge, identify community needs, and develop a framework for evaluating risks with a focus on climate justice. Register by June 15

  • Revitalizing Africa’s Soils

    Revitalizing Africa’s Soils

    To feed our burgeoning global population, the world has to at least double crop yields by 2050, by improving seeds of high yielding crops and cultivating healthy fertile soils. A new on-the-spot soil testing kit will help meet this challenge.

  • Investigating Impacts of Increased Fertilizer Use in Africa

    Investigating Impacts of Increased Fertilizer Use in Africa

    The rains came late this year in Kenya. I was there for several months in the winter and spring to conduct research for a post-doctoral fellowship, examining the consequences of increases in fertilizer use on soil fertility, maize yields, nitrogen gas emissions and nitrogen leaching losses.

  • Why Soil Matters

    Why Soil Matters

    Soil is the source of all life. Yet “we know more about soils of Mars than about soils of Africa,” says Pedro Sanchez, director of the Earth Institute’s Tropical Agriculture and the Rural Environment Program. To remedy this situation, the Earth Institute is taking part in an ambitious undertaking to map the world’s soils.

  • Getting to the Root of Africa’s Agriculture Challenges: TropAg and AfSIS Partner to Improve Soil Fertility

    Getting to the Root of Africa’s Agriculture Challenges: TropAg and AfSIS Partner to Improve Soil Fertility

    Agrium Incorporated and The Mosaic Company have partnered with the Earth Institute’s Tropical Agriculture and Rural Environment Program (TropAg) to improve soil measurement and fertility throughout Sub-Saharan Africa.  The program will link the Millennium Villages Project to the African Soil and Information Systems Project (AfSIS) with the aim of assessing nutrient depletion in soil and…

  • Is Biomass Really Renewable?

    Is Biomass Really Renewable?

    Ninety percent of all existing biomass power plants use wood residue and there are currently 115 power plants in development that will burn biomass to generate electricity. But just how renewable is biomass energy?