OSTP call to action on saving soil

I really realize this is not perfectly “microBEnet” related but I think this is quite important and there are many “microbiome” components to this. Thus I think this is worth posting here.

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy is issuing a national Call to Action and forming an interagency group to protect America’s soil.

OSTP is calling for comments, ideas and feedback relating to multiple areas including

  • Monitoring Soil and Obtaining High-Quality Data
  • Informing Targeted Decision-Making and Engaging the Public
  • Applying Scalable Solutions on the Ground

Although many may consider soil to be a natural entity, it is heavily impacted by humans and the human built environment and also serves as an important source for microbes in the built environment. Thus I believe those thinking about microbiology of the built environment could potentially be important voices in the discussion about the future of soil.

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Jonathan Eisen

I am an evolutionary biologist and a Professor at U. C. Davis. My lab is in the UC Davis Genome Center and I hold appointments in the Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology in the School of Medicine and the Department of Evolution and Ecology in the College of Biological Sciences. My research focuses on the origin of novelty (how new processes and functions originate). To study this I focus on sequencing and analyzing genomes of organisms, especially microbes and using phylogenomic analysis (see my lab site here which has more information on lab activities).  In addition to research, I am heavily involved in the Open Access publishing and Open Science movements.