66105 - Sensitivity And Vulnerability Of Soil-Water System

Academic Year 2021/2022

  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Planning and management of agro-territorial, forest and landscape (cod. 8532)

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course, the student has acquired the theoretical and practical tools to assess the degree of sensitivity and vulnerability of soil and water as a function of environmental conditions and / or human intervention in the territory in compliance with standards for Community legislation, national and regional authorities. In particular, the student is able to: - perform actions for a rational management of soil and water as a function of eco system conditions and soil characteristics - carry out capability and suitability assessment of land- Use of soils as a function of environmental characteristics and of human actions - organize campaigns monitoring to assess the degree of impact caused by different types of degradation and potential contamination of soil and water resources.

Course contents


1) Prerequisites
The student who logs on to this teaching must be in possession of a good preparation on study techniques of ecosystems and in particular those relating to the detection and classification of soils and evaluation of hydraulic agro-forestry systems. The student must have the basic knowledge to further statistical processing. The student must have a good knowledge of English since the course material used during the frontal activity and exercise comes in the original language.
2) Unit Contents Teaching Theoretical (36 hours)
Teaching Unit 1) The soil threats
-The Soil threats: compaction, pollution, salinizzazzione, alkalizing, loss of biodiversity and organic C, erosion and desertification.

The course aims to gain knowledge through the study of case studies

-Anthrosol and Tehnosol: heavy metal pollution (10 hours)

Widespread pollution study case: Frullo (BO) incinerator-plant

Case Study of Geogenic Pollution: Case Study of Valdicastello Carducci Mining Zone (Pietrasanta)

Local pollution study case: Case study of Castenaso (BO) ex-furnace

-soil and water salinization (10 hours)

Case study salinisation farmland of the Ravenna coast

Case study of lagoon and wetland ecosystems hydromorphic relationship between soil-plant system

Case study of in the Ozzano-Settefonti farm

-Fertility loss and organic soil C decrease (10 hours)

Case study of the calculation of organic stock of organic C in agricultural, forest and pasture land

Unit Contents of Teaching Laboratory, Field Exercises (24 hours)
The exercises will take place on the landy:

1) Seminars related to the tools for the sustainable management of agricultural and forest soils the environment (4 hours)

2) Field Excursion

3)GIS study in Informatic class



Teaching materials (scientific and informative papier) distributed in class

Giordano A. “ peodologia forestale e conservazione del suolo” UTET

VISUAL SOIL ASSESSMENT (VSA) Field Guideshttp://www.fao.org/docrep/010/i0007e/i0007e00.htm

Predicting soil erosion by water: a guide to conservation planning with the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE). http://www.ars.usda.gov/SP2UserFiles/Place/64080530/RUSLE/AH_703.pdf

Land Capability material (free download):


Land Suitability material (free reading):http://www.fao.org/docrep/t0715e/t0715e06.htm

Il suolo: la radice della vita. APAT (ISPRA) http://www.isprambiente.gov.it/files/pubblicazioni/pubblicazionidipregio/3633_il_suolo_def.pdf

Teaching methods


The Teaching of Sensitivity and Vulnerability of the Water-Soil System has been moved to the second cycle of lessons to enable the knowledge and skills acquired in other I cycle of lessons (Soil Quality Indicators and "Pollutants in the Water- Plant) and Statistical Methodology and Data Processing.

Teaching will be articulated by developing case studies and applying guidelines and methodologies related to current legislation. The exercises will be carried out through the activation of seminars of didactic exits on the territory and of reading and restitution by the students of scientific / disseminative texts.

The study of land capability and land suitability will be applied to Ozzano-Settefonti farms through the ALMA FARM Project

Assessment methods

Testing is done through a final exam with the integrated teaching of EXPERIMENTAL METHODOLOGY AND ANALYSIS OF DATA.

II semester: Applying appropriate statistical and GIS methodologies to environmental monitoring cases.

Study cases presented in the first and second semesters can be held in groups but each student must be aware of the entire document

Teaching tools

The course makes use of laboratory LabGIS and computer labs concerning statistical data processing and presentation, management and treatment of the same in a GIS format.

During the lectures and tutorials are provided during the lecture notes, cards, pictures, files and bibliographic material. In addition there are a few websites: www.dipsa.unibo.it / CATGIS - www.dipsa.unibo.it / Aposa - www.apat.it / soil the root of life - www.soilmaps.it - gias.regione emilia -romagna.it/suoli.

Office hours

See the website of Livia Vittori Antisari


Good health and well-being Responsible consumption and production Climate Action Life on land

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.