December 18, 2009

The University of Kentucky's Paul Bertsch was recently reappointed chair of the U.S. National Committee for Soil Science by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.

Bertsch, a professor in the UK College of Agriculture and director of UK's Tracy Farmer Institute for Sustainability and the Environment, will begin his second three-year term as chair Jan. 1.

"I am honored to have been tapped to lead this prestigious committee again, and I am looking forward to the tasks ahead," he said.

The national committee works through the Board on International Scientific Organization to represent the U.S. soil science community in the International Union of Soil Sciences. In addition, committee members educate and inform policy makers and agency personnel about issues related to the global soil resource.

"The college is certainly proud of Paul's prominent profile in the national discussion of soil science issues. These issues affect some of the most pressing problems facing the world: climate change, energy independence and environmental sustainability. Paul's participation places UK in a leadership position to influence lasting policy decisions," said Nancy Cox, associate dean for research and director of the Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station.

"Soil is at the center of global environmental, food and water security, and it is a very exciting time for the discipline and soil scientists as we engage in discussions on very important issues," Bertsch said. "These issues include global sustainable development, climate change, waste management, food and water security and the health of humans and ecosystems."

In addition to the chairing the U.S. National Committee for Soil Science, Bertsch serves as president of the Soil Science Society of America. 

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