GEOL 1003 Ch12.ppt

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  Soil as a Resource Chapter 12 Erosion has resulted in deep gullying of this exposed soil embankment. Photo from State of California, Department of Transportation  Soil Formation ã Soil    –  several ways to define  – Unconsolidated material overlying bedrock  – Material capable of supporting plant growth  – Regolith  encompasses all unconsolidated material at the surface, fertile or not ã Soil: is produced by weathering  – Involves chemical, physical, biological processes to breakdown rocks  – Climate, topography, source material composition, and time are factors  Soil-Forming Processes Weathering ã Climate and water a major factor ã Mechanical Weathering:  physical breakdown of minerals by mechanical action. No changes chemically.  – Freezing water expansion ã Frost wedging  – Break up of rocks and minerals without changing the rock’s composition    – Salt crystallization can wedge cracks ã Chemical Weathering:  breakdown of minerals by chemical reaction
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