Hiral Jariwala

Role: Conference Bursary Recipient

Department: School of Engineering

Conference Attended: 2022 Joint Canadian Society of Soil Science (CSSS) Annual Meeting-Alberta Soil Science Workshop (ASSW)

Location: University of Alberta, Edmonton,

Value: $2,491.22

Research Presentation: 

The global population increases exponentially, and for ensuring food security for everyone, the agricultural sector is bound to use larger quantities of conventional fertilizers for crop production. The excessive use of conventional fertilizers can cause environmental damage associated with surface run[1]off, leaching of nutrients to groundwater, volatilization, and denitrification. In light of these challenges, current research is threefold: 1) Development of controlled release fertilizer (CRF) to reduce the release rate of nutrients in the soil, 2) Collaborate with stakeholders to carry out the field study on the impact of CRF on crop production and nitrogen use efficiency, 3) Explore new opportunities for climate-smart agriculture practices through the application of CRF in crop production. The current research on CRF development is directly connected with the FFT research theme on crops research. The crops research theme focuses on agricultural productivity, soil health, landscape management, cover crops, and various topics on protecting ecosystems services. The present research on CRF focuses on the intensification of agricultural production and enhancing plant, soil and landscape biodiversity to intensify agricultural productivity and nitrogen use efficiency without compromising environmental damage. The application of CRF promotes climate-smart agricultural practices and reduces greenhouse gas emissions from fertilizer application.

Objectives for Attending: 

Joint Canadian Society of Soil Science (CSSS) Annual Meeting and Alberta Soil Science Workshop (ASSW) cover a wide range of topics in the agricultural sector, including soil science, crop science, data science & AI, and greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural soils. As a Ph.D. student and HQP scholarship recipient, this is my first in-person conference and a great opportunity to present research to peers working in my research area. My Ph.D. project addresses multiple aspects of FFT research objectives on crops research and also aligns with the conference theme. My main aim is to share the novelty of my work and show the significance of applying controlled release fertilizer (CRF) for crop production and soil health while reducing greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural soil. Still, there is a huge knowledge gap of CRF application among growers and academia. My accepted abstract for oral presentation describes the introduction, methodology and discussion sections which help to understand the topic better and thoroughly without any background. Moreover, presentations from students, professors, industry delegates and experts in various fields will give me good insights into the different topics and enhance my knowledge in various technical aspects of soil science. CSSS/ASSW conference covers student presentations, workshops on soil mapping and trace elements analyses, and field tours on soil remediation studies. These activities will expand my network and also help to implement some new methods and concepts in my current Ph.D. project. The in-person conference is an excellent opportunity to disseminate my research findings and get feedback from experts working in that area. The in-person presentation also helps to enhance public speaking skills and establish research collaboration with experts. Networking during the conference is a great opportunity for collaborating on a research project, editing books, publishing joint articles and potential career opportunities.