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Treated like dirt: urban soil is often overlooked as a resource

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Roisin O'Riordan, Lancaster University.

 

When you think about soil, you probably think of rolling fields of the countryside. But what about urban soil? With city-dwellers expected to account for 68% of the world’s population by 2050, this often forgotten resource is increasingly important. City-based agriculture is on the rise. But urban soil is more often associated with contamination and risks to health.

 

However, the earth in our parks, gardens and roadsides actually underpins many aspects of daily life. As our recent research paper highlights, urban soil hosts wildlife, stores water, provides food, helps combat the climate crisis and improves (...)

 

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