Global Soil Map Launches

by Matt Ball on February 17, 2009


The launches today at a ceremony at The Earth Institute at Columbia University. Jeffrey Sachs, noted economist and Director of the institute will be on hand, as will Pedro Sanchez, director of the Africa Soil Information System. This global system fills a need for accurate, up-to-date and spatially referenced soil information, and was made possible by a $18 Million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation and the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa. The initial grant will go toward mapping most parts of sub-Saharan Africa, and making the data available.

Building on this African commitment, a consortium of entities have teamed together to make a global digital soil map that takes advantage of state-0f-the-art and emerging technologies in order to map and predict soil properties at a fine resolution. The goal is to map much of the ice-free land in the world over the next five years at a grid resolution of 90 by 90 meters.

By making this a global effort, and not just Africa-centric, the group will standardize the data collection methodology and will assist in technology exchange. This approach ensures a cohesive data format that can allow for comparisons and analysis among and across continents.

Read this brochure for more details.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

John Broome February 26, 2009 at 2:31 pm

Hi – I learned of this exciting new development through the CODATA International distribution list. It would be interesting to investigate linkages between OneGeology ( and the Global Soil Map. Clearly the two initiatives have potential synergy.


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