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This workshop is currently being reviewed by the LSP Board for approval as technical workshop of continuing education units. If approved, this workshop will be offered in different regions of the State.

Soil Field Skills Workshop for LSPs Describing, Documenting and Interpreting Soil Conditions in the Field

Presented by:
Peter C. Fletcher, Certified Professional Soil Scientist 02703, Soil Evaluator 3027

Create a foundation of knowledge in Soil Science and develop field skills needed by an LSP for assessing, documenting, and interpreting the soil conditions for hazardous materials assessment.

Date to be Announced
Registration and refreshments from 8:00 to 8:30 AM - Workshop will start at 8:30 AM and end by 5:00 PM

Morning Session
Lecture, Power Point Presentations, and Hands on Exercises

Geology and Soils of Massachusetts:
1. Geologic past
2. Field Identification of glacial landforms
    • Moraines, outwash plains, drumlins, kame terraces, eskers, etc.

Soil Formation:
1. Soil forming processes
2. Describing and documenting soil profiles (horizons and layers)
    • Master Horizons: O, A, E, B, C, and R
    • Subordinate distinctions: a, b, d, g, etc.
    • Documenting fill

Describing and Documenting Soil Conditions
1. Soil texture, estimating percent sand, silt, and clay
    • Identifying restrictive layers
2. Soil color, use of the Munsell Color Book
    • Main soil coloring agents and their significance
3. Soil structure and consistence

Estimating Depth to Seasonal High Groundwater
1. Groundwater and different groundwater systems
    • Unconfined, confined, and artesian
2. Soil wetness features (redoximorphic features)
    • Soil mottling vs. redoximorphic features
    • Redox concentrations and depletions
3. Interpreting depth to seasonal high groundwater

Upland vs. Wetland Soils:
1. What is a hydric soil
2. Organic vs. mineral soils
3. Soil features common to uplands and wetlands soils
4. DEP Field indicators for identifying hydric soils

Afternoon Field Exercises
At this time participants will work in small groups (4 to 5) and conduct field exercises on a diverse glacial landscape. Before going into the field, reference materials from different sources (USGS Topographic Map, aerial photogrammetry, Surficial geology maps, USDA NRCS soil maps, DEP Wetland Maps, FEMA Flood Insurance Maps, etc.) will be reviewed. Participants will then traverse the landscape and identify the different landforms. Soil cuts and hand-dug holes will be studied across the landscape. Participants will be asked to describe and interpret the soil conditions in test pits and document their findings on appropriate forms. Emphasis will be given to understanding the hydrology at the different sites and interpreting the depth to seasonal high groundwater. Hypothetical situations will be presented to the participants, followed by group discussion where individuals present their professional opinions. The instructor will provide the equipment needed for the field exercises.

Course Materials
Each participant will receive handouts and a field guide for documenting soil conditions. Field Investigations: This workshop will be conducted using hand shovels and soil augers. Participants may bring their own field equipment. Soil color books, trowels, water bottles, shovels and augers, and forms will be provided by the instructor.

Field Conditions
The field exercises for this workshop are strenuous and require participants to traverse rough terrain, walk long distances, and dig test holes using shovels and augers. Each participant needs to evaluate their own health and physical conditioning before registering for this workshop.

Weather Conditions
Participants should come properly dressed for the field and wear appropriate clothing for the weather conditions. If the weather conditions are extreme (driving rain and lightning), participants will be notified via the Internet and the workshop will be rescheduled to the Rain Date.

Refreshments and Lunch
Snacks and drinks will be provided. Participants are to bring their own lunches.

Because challenging field sites are essential for the success of this workshop, participants may be required to drive between field sites.

All participants are required to be present during the times stated for the workshop. Attendance will be taken at the start and close of the workshop.

Limited Enrollment
To allow for small group instruction/discussion, enrollment for this workshop is limited to 15 participants.

Certificate of Completion
A Certificate will be awarded to each participant who successfully completes the workshop specifying the completion of ## LSP Continuing Education Units.

Continuing Education Attendance Certification Form
Each participant who successfully completes this course will receive a Continuing Education Attendance Certification Form. LSPs are required to submit this form as part of their license renewal process.

There will be a $35 fee for researching lost attendance records and the reissue of a Continuing Education Attendance Certification Form. The request and the fee must be received by mail addressed to: Peter Fletcher, PO Box 141, Bridgewater, MA 02324.



LSP Workshop Schedule

Please check Soil Evaluator Refresher Workshops. These have dual LSP, SE, and SI credits.