Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences, NARO

Soil Inventory Unit

Our research unit promotes the accumulation and dissemination of data so as to provide necessary soil information to the occasional situation for the revision of fertilization criteria and the technical development of sustainable soil management while continuing the study on the Soil information web browser and the Comprehensive soil classification of Japan, both of which our institute has been investigating on a long-term basis. For instance, we develop a method that allows an international comparative evaluation, normalizing the soil information of arable land, grassland, and forestland throughout the country. These soil-related data which can be utilized for farming guidance, fertilizer management, research and development, and so on will be open to the public in the easy-to-use format.
On the other hand, there are cases when radioactive contamination is important as an evaluation item of soil resources. As a foundation technology that can be used to promote the resumption of farming in the affected area of ​​the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident, we proceed with the analysis of the radionuclide dynamics in the environment. By continuing these surveys and researches, it is possible to predict the influence of long-term radioactive contamination as well as an analysis system can be maintained if and when unforeseen nuclear hazards occur. Consequently, quick response to the radioactive contamination of the soil and agricultural and livestock products can be managed.

Unit Leader

Hiroshi OBARA
Research Topic : Pedology

Unit Members

Research Topics
Toshiaki OHKURA Principal Researcher Pedology, Philosophy of soil conservation
Yuji MAEJIMA Principal Researcher Pedology
Yuuzo MAMPUKU Senior Researcher
Hideshi FUJIWARA Principal Researcher Environmental Radioactivity
Nobuharu KIHOU Re-employed Staff Environmental Radioactivity

Research Publications

  • H. Obara, Y. Maejima, K. Kohyama, T. Ohkura, Y. Takata (2015) Outline of the Comprehensive Soil Classification System of Japan - First Approximation, JARQ-Japan Agricultural Research Quarterly, 49, 217-226
  • H. Fujiwara (2016) Observation of radioactive iodine (131I, 129I) in cropland soil after the Fukushima nuclear accident, Science of the Total Environment, 566-567, 1432-1439
  • H. Fujiwara, K. Kawabata, J. Suzuki, O. Shikino (2011) Determination of 129I in soil samples by DRC-ICP-MS. Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, 26, 2528-2533
  • K.Ohse, N. Kihou, K.Kurishima, T. Inoue, I. Taniyama (2015) Changes in concentrations of 131I, 134Cs and 137Cs in leafy vegetables, soil and precipitation in Tsukuba city, Ibaraki, Japan, in the first 4 months after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident, Soil Sci. Plant Nutr., 61, 225-229
  • Y. Takata, K. Kohyama, H. Obara, Y. Maejima, N. Ishitsuka, T. Saito and I. Taniyama (2014) Spatial prediction of radioactive Cs concentration in agricultural soil in East Japan, Soil Sci. Plant Nutr., 60, 393-403
Corporate Number 7050005005207