Agronomy faculty researches will participate in the International H2020 program project and will implement interdisciplinary, cross-sector and internationally relevant problems of soil fertility changes
In 2021 in April new international H2020 program Project HoliSoils “Forest Soils Research and Innovation Action – Holistic Management Practices, Modelling and Monitoring for European Forest Soils“ will be started. Vytautas Magnus University Agriculture Academy will participate in the Project together with researchers from other 19 countries (Finland, the Czech Republic, Sweden, Germany, Great Britain, Japan, France, Spain, the Netherlands, etc.). The project aims to exchange the new knowledge on soil assessment processes and assessment methods in order to address the long-term benefits of soil-related ecosystems and climate change policy strategies in line with the European Union strategic standards. Including the UN’s Agenda 2030 SDGs, the Paris Agreement of Climate Convention, the EU Bioeconomy Strategy, the EU’s LULUCF Regulation, the EU Forest Strategy (2018), and the European Green Deal. HoliSoils will develop a harmonised soil monitoring framework and identify and test soil management practices aiming to mitigate CC and sustain provision of various ecosystem services essential for human livelihoods and wellbeing.
The multidisciplinary consortium consists of universities and research institutes from across Europe, with leading expertise on soil analysis and databases, development of advanced analytical techniques, complex system modelling, digital soil mapping, soil ecology, disturbance ecology, forest and GHG inventories, social sciences, and communications. It also involves active engagement with diverse stakeholders, including forest owners and managers, industry actors, forest extension services, a certification body, forest and soil researchers, climate policy support and GHG inventory experts, and policymakers.
The following main activities will be carried out in order to implement the project objectives: (WP 1) Analysing soil properties & drivers of microbiological processes, (WP 2) Modelling dynamics of soil properties & element fluxes, (WP 3) Harmonised soil monitoring framework for an EU GHG inventory, (WP 4) Holistic sustainable soil & forest management strategies, (WP 5) Soil resilience & recovery capacity after natural disturbances, (WP 6) Forest soils under different management scenarios in Europe, (WP 7) Stakeholder engagement, dissemination, exploitation & communication (DEC).
Researchers at the VMU Agriculture Academy will be actively involved in all project activities, however, will focus on analysis of soil properties and microbiological processes, evaluation of soil GHG evaluation strategy, development of holistic sustainable soil and forest management strategy, dissemination, communication and harmonization of project results.
Project duration – 54 months.
The total Project budget is 10,035,592.50 EUR, the financing from the European Union funding – 9,999,920.00 EUR. The VMU Agriculture Academy budget is 93,125.00 EUR, the European Union funding – 86,875.00 EUR.