The main objective of the course is to enable the student to use geochemistry and the isotope tool for solving problems related to the management of water resources, critically evaluating the methodologies to be used for environmental monitoring and for the traceability of products and foods.
The specific objectives of the course are:
i) provide basic geochemical knowledge relating to water, soils and plants from an elementary and isotopic point of view;
ii) illustrate key chemical technologies for studying soil formation and interactions between natural environments and food production activities;
iii) To transmit skills in the processing of chemical data in order to understand the interactions between the atmosphere-soil-plants systems and their relations with climate change, in the perspective of sustainable agriculture and the fight against the ongoing climate crisis;
iv) Describe the main techniques for detecting the elementary and isotopic signature with which to investigate the origin of foods and their authenticity;
v) Analyzing carbon and nitrogen cycles: C3, C4 and CAM plants, carbon storage of soil texture, effects of seasonal changes and soil microbial communities on assimilation and cycles of carbon and nitrogen.
vi) Analyzing biogeochemical cycles and relationships with the geo - lithological environment, carbon exchanges between soil and atmosphere and the isotopic balancing of organic matter pools to quantify the alterations due to changes in climate, land use and of other anthropogenic impacts.