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vor 2 Jahren

FELD 02/2017

  • Text
  • Agriculture
  • Latin america
  • Citizen science
  • China
  • Protein
  • Dust
  • Clouds
  • Environment
  • Landscape
  • Cultivation
  • Projects
  • Emissions
  • Environmental
  • Zalf
  • Agricultural
  • Pulses
  • Particles
  • Soil
Dr. Roger Funk studies the effects of raised soil dust on our environment. In his latest project, he reaches high up into the sky and explores its effect on cloud formation. // Lupins, peas, beans and CO. are cultivated on no more than 1.7 percent of Europe’s arable land. ZALF researchers are determined to change this because these plants supply valuable protein and reduce greenhouse gases. // Each year in spring, dust storms sweep across ‘Inner Mongolia’ in northern China carrying enormous amounts of dust particles over thousands of miles. A joint German-Chinese project has analysed the causes and effects. // Local initiatives all over the world are working to protect the environment. A team of researchers has looked into particularly succesful projects in Latin America and is helping to transfer their solutions to other regions.


PULSES PULSES GROWING INTEREST IN PULSES The reintegration of pulses could contribute towards more sustainable cropping systems and reduce dependency on imported protein plants. »Despite the challenges, the potential of legumes speaks for itself,« the researchers agree. Politicians too are increasingly recognizing this and responding to it. In order to draw attention to the underestimated crops, the United Nations declared 2016 the International Year of Pulses. In 2012, the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) launched the protein crop strategy in order to strengthen the position of domestic legumes in economic competition. The researchers at ZALF also actively support a comeback of pulses: »In order to support agriculture, we developed the ›ROTOR‹ cultivation system planner. It can be used to calculate, for instance, yield expectations, nitrogen and humus balances as well as weed infestation risks for the respective site,« explains Reckling. »In order to ensure the practical relevance of our results, we continuously carry out investigations with farmers in our region. But the researchers are also breaking entirely new ground: »For four years now, we have been cultivating the economically most promising type of pulses, i.e. soybean, on our test fields. In warm areas, such as Brandenburg or southern Germany, we are already recording remarkable yields,« says Reckling. »We are working intensively with farmers on a comeback of pulses in our domestic fields«, Bachinger takes an optimistic look into the future.»Their reintegration into the European agricultural landscapes would not only contribute to more sustainable farming, but also reduce dependence on imported protein plants.« DR. JOHANN BACHINGER 16 17

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