Programs, research, reports and systems found in the following resources provide extensive details on how to maintain a high level of soil quality no matter the region in Alberta you live.
Soil Names File User's Handbook
The Alberta Soil Names File (Generation 4) User’s Handbook reflects the need for consistent characterization of soil types and the establishment of limits to the geographical distribution of each soil type name (soil name) within Alberta.
The Generation 4 version of the User’s Handbook updates the 2006 (Generation 3) edition by incorporating new soil names created since the release of the 2006 edition and modifications that have been made to some soil correlation areas boundaries.
Download: Alberta Soil Names File (Generation 4) User’s Handbook (PDF, 3.7 MB)
Soil correlation area map
Current (2016) version of the Soil Correlation Area (SCA) Map of Alberta illustrating the boundaries that define the geographic distribution of the soil names associated with each SCA.
Download: SCA map (PDF, 1.5 MB)
- Individual SCA Areas in individual Compressed Keyhole Markup Language formatted files (ZIP, 435 KB)
- All SCA Areas in one ESRI shape layer completed with metadata xml file (ZIP, 155 KB).
Land Suitability Rating System
This report was generated after the Land Suitability Rating System computer program was developed. The report describes the processes and procedures followed including references to research that were used to develop and support the decisions taken.
Download: Land Suitability Rating System Development (PDF, 1.4 MB)
Soil quality benchmark site study
In the late 1980’s, questions concerning trends in soil quality and means of measuring those trends, if detectable, arose in response to the issue of sustainable agriculture.
In an attempt to answer some of the questions raised, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada established the Soil Quality Benchmark Site Study as part of the Soil Quality Evaluation Program, in 1990.
A network of 23 benchmark monitoring sites was created across Canada by 1992. Various land, soil and air characteristics were to be monitored for at least 10 years.
Four benchmark sites were established in Alberta:
- BM03 west of Falher (PDF, 250 KB)
- BM04 east of Mundare at the Parkland Conservation Demonstration Farm (PDF, 5 MB)
- BM05 northeast of Provost (PDF, 645 KB)
- BM06 south of Bow Island (PDF, 310 KB)