Rehabilitating soil with farmers

BOKU's Institute of Soil Research (IBF) and Centre for Development Research (CDR) work with UGM's Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering towards improving soil structure and function in ex-mining area.

On Bangka Island, Indonesia, tin is extracted from near-surface deposits using water and physical separation techniques, leaving behind deposits of quartz sand and the clay mineral kaolinite. After mining, the soil needs to be rehabilitated before it can be used in agriculture again.

Farmers want to know how to improve the quality of their soil, increase their yields, and improve their livelihoods. Several possible soil amendments are available on the island. In 2018, a team from BOKU Vienna and Universitas Gadjah Mada set up a trial field with local farmers to test different options.

The process and the encouraging first results have been documented in a video that is now available on BOKU's Youtube channel.

Team BOKU Vienna:

  • CDR partners Katharina Keiblinger & Axel Mentler (Institute of Soil Research)
  • Rosana Kral (Centre for Development Research)

Team UGM:

  • Murtiningrum, Ngadisih and Rizki Maftukhah (Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering)

The making of this film has been supported by the ASEA-Uninet program, the Austrian Development Agency and ERASMUS+ actions of the European Union.

Picture credits: Axel Mentler