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Dirt! The Movie

2 June 2010 – 13:30 - 14:30

An award-winning documentary about dirt: Dirt! The Movie  takes you inside the wonders of the soil. It tells the story of Earth's most valuable and underappreciated source of fertility, from its miraculous beginning to its crippling degradation.
By Gene Rosow and Bill Benenson
Narrated by Jamie Lee-Curtis

The soil life we walk on - does it matter?

Wednesday 2 June 2010 - 14:30 – 16:00

Did you know that termite heaps are air-conditioned? Or that a mole eats its own bodyweight in food every day? Literally thousands of micro-organisms live in a teaspoon of soil, but we know surprisingly little about this most basic building block of our society. The astonishing diversity of this underground world far exceeds that of the planet above it, and is of fundamental importance for all life on Earth. Biodiversity in soil provides food for the plants that we grow, keeps pests at bay, helps clean our drinking water, breaks down pollutants, produces soil organic matter and is one of the key players in keeping our climate healthy.

This session offers a glimpse inside the Earth's engine room, and shows how we depend on a vast array of interlinked species that we know very little about.