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Newsletter #2 | July 2023

Barcelona, 03.07.2023

In this edition of the newsletter, we are highlighting important articles, quizzes and valuable resources to stay up to date in the world of soil restoration. So, sit back, relax, and let’s dive into the world of soil together! 

NBSOIL Website is Live

We are delighted to reconnect with you and share the latest updates on our journey. Since our last newsletter, we are excited to announce the launch of the NBSOIL website, dedicated to providing you with the latest insights, resources and ways to get involved with NBSOIL.

Check the new website here

NBSOIL Biweekly Quiz  

‘Diversification’ of a forest stand can be achieved by increasing its compositional (e.g. multiple tree species), structural (e.g. mixed tree heights in mixed age stands), and/or genotypic complexity (e.g. multiple genetic provenances).
‘Blue–Green infrastructure’ infrastructure is a strategically planned network of natural and semi-natural areas with other environmental features designed and managed to deliver a wide range of ecosystem services such as water purification, air quality, space for recreation and climate mitigation and adaptation.
Read more

Scientists Rally for EU Nature Restoration Law


The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), a partner of the NBSOIL Project, urged EU institutions to ensure the adoption of an ambitious regulation for the restoration of nature which aims to restore 20% of the EU’s land and seas by 2030 and all areas in need of restoration by 2050. The law emphasises the importance of restoring ecosystems in various habitats including forests, agricultural lands and urban areas. The decisive vote for the Restoration Law is expected to be held in the week of 10 July. Restoration not only benefits biodiversity but also offers economic advantages, enhances food security, mitigates climate change impacts and provides job opportunities. The law’s implementation would require collaboration and targeted funding but the projected benefits far outweigh the costs.


Photo: Jonas Verstuyft

Sign the letter of support

Unleashing the Potential of UAV Soil Sensing


The Institute of Aviation (ILOT) gathered high-resolution data from bare soil in Żelisławki, Poland in April 2023, using a drone equipped with a camera and LiDAR scanning system. The data will be analysed to study soil parameters and their relationship with in-situ data. The ILOT team also has plans to collect data in other areas of Poland and Austria. Their tasks done within the soil sensing and mapping work package of the NBSOIL Project aim to develop algorithms for various applications, including fertilisation, flower detection, disease identification and crop variability.

Learn more about WP4

Exploring Innovative Agroforestry Practices

A study tour took place in Belgium, Germany and Switzerland, where participants including the NBSOIL project partner Institute of Soil Science and Plant Cultivation visited innovative agroforestry farms. The tour included various highlights such as a walnut field experiment, a forest-pasture system with walnut trees and dairy cattle, alley agroforestry systems with fruit trees and vegetables, vineyards utilizing sheep grazing, and agroforestry systems with diverse fruit trees and shrubs. The tour aimed to explore different agroforestry practices and their advantages in sustainable farming.


Institute of Soil Science and Plant Cultivation joins in a study tour. Photo: Ludwika Poręba

Learn more about IUNG

Cover Crop Conservation in Europe


Cover crops are a close-growing crop that provide soil protection, seeding protection, and soil health improvement between periods of normal crop production. Cover crops are crucial in the Common Agricultural Policy 2023-2027 but data is limited. Satellite information can help disaggregate survey data, with a validation in France showing a 0.74 area under the curve. This pioneering work creates a cover crop map for Europe, despite its limitations. Check out the map of cover crops in Europe.

Read the article

Call for contributors to the European Soil Condition Assessment

The European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) together with the European Environmental Agency (EEA) is looking for contributing authors for the preparation of its Assessment of the State of Soil Health in Europe. If you would like to contribute to this report please fill and submit this form by 7 July 2023 indicating your area of expertise and your geographical scope.


Contribute here

Call for a PhD position

The Swiss federal centre of excellence for agricultural research, Agroscope, is offering a PhD position – “Agroforestry systems for healthy soils.” Soil degradation threatens the fertility of the majority of agroecosystems and reduces their resilience to climate change. Agroforestry promises high potential for improving soil health in agricultural systems and while observations support this hypothesis, there is a lack of scientifically-sound data, especially in temperate climate zones. The aim of this PhD position is to close this knowledge gap.


Apply here

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