Smyth-Fernwald Soil Testing for Community Engaged Land Usage Planning

Smyth-Fernwald Soil Testing for Community Engaged Land Usage Planning

Project Lead: Natalia Semeraro

Project Sponsor: Berkeley Food Institute (BFI)

TGIF Grant: $1,640

Project Theme: Agriculture and Food Justice

Application Submission

Project Description: The Smyth-Fernwald grant is a first step in establishing a community-engaged “fertile ground” in a 4.5-acre tract of University land with a history of fires, erosion, seismic risks, and possible environmental contamination. The grant project will assess the ecological health of the site through soil testing to determine what remediation efforts and soil amendments are needed to ensure safety and soil quality. Soil testing is a component of a larger goal for community engagement around the Smyth-Fernwald Tract: The effort will continue through meetings with nearby groups of neighbors, students, educators and others to draft a proposal to the campus administration for land use. The grant will result in a replicable model for use at other sites that includes consistent consultation with community members, reduced safety risk, improved ecological and public health, increased biodiversity, and future food production.

Project Goals:

  1. Test for contamination by metals or PHC’s
  2.  Test for fertility with nutrient content
  3. Utilize results to implement remediation process and encourage student and community engagement throughout the development of the site

Final Report 

Final Poster