Sundays With Science Series

Lecture-discussions to promote science literacy among the general public.
Event detail
 

No prior knowledge of math or science required.

Feb. 24:

What's Scientific About Soil?

We humans tend to take for granted familiar components of our lives, for example, spouses, pets, vegetables, water, flush toilets, and soil. However, the loss of any one of these can jolt our very existence. Of this list, scientists would argue that only the soil is truly irreplaceable within one’s lifetime. There are government regulations to protect the quality of our water and our air, but nothing comparable has been promulgated to protect our soil. The soil is a highly complex physical, chemical, and biological layer on Earth’s surface that, in most cases, took thousands of years to form, yet can be washed away in a few minutes if unprotected from a downpour of rain. The soil supports the growth of plants, which are the link between energy from the sun and life on Earth. The science underlying this fascinating, nature-made material and its behavior is described in this lecture, with the hope that understanding soil will lead to more respectful and sustainable use of this essential material.

Instructor: Barbara-Ann G. Lewis.
Ms. Lewis is Associate Professor Emeritus, Civil and Environmental Engineering, at Northwestern University and a former Environmental Scientist at Argonne National Laboratory.

When: Sun, 2/24/2013, 12:15 - 2:30 p.m.

Where:  Latino/Hispanic Community Meeting Room B, Main Library
100 Larkin St.

This free program is co-sponsored by the Business, Science & Technology Center of San Francisco Public Library and the University of the Commons.
Check uotc.org for a complete list of free University of the Commons classes.

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