G. Fischer, E. de Pauw, H. Van Velthuizen, F. Nachtergaele, J. Antoine
Abstract: The length of the available growing period (LGP) concept, was developed by FAO in the late seventies to quantify the period when temperature and moisture conditions are such to allow crop growth. FAO applied it in an agroecological inventory and rainfed crop suitability evaluation in the tropics and subtropics. This method is expanded here to take into account temperate and colder conditions. A waterbalance approach is followed to characterize moisture conditions and a thermal classification is established. The methodology is applied to the Leemans-Cramer 30 arcminute global climatic database and global LGP and thermal zone maps are created.
Key words: Length of Growing Period (LGP), climatic classification, agro-ecological zoning.
F. O. Nachtergaele
Abstract: This paper traces the history of the FAO soil map from its origin, as a paper map started in the early 1960's, to the plans now being implemented by FAO and several other agencies to create an updated georeferenced Global Soil and Terrain Database. Examples of information contained in the various database products available as well as advantages and disadvantages of different approaches are discussed.
Key words: Soil Map of the World, Soil Profile Database, SOTER.