SSS Soil System Sciences
The 2012 Division Outstanding Young Scientists Award is awarded to Claudio Zaccone for his contribution to understanding the role of humification processes in ombrotrophic bog profiles and the interactions between humic substances and organic/inorganic pollutants.
Claudio Zaccone is a leading scientist on the role of humification processes affecting the accumulation of inorganic and organic pollutants along ombrotrophic bog profiles. Zaccone has strongly contributed to the advancement of the Soil Science by several studies carried out in the last decades using ombrotrophic bogs in order to reconstruct the historical trends of pollutants due to anthropogenic vs. natural sources, as well as of climatic changes.
Zaccone is a pioneer researcher in the use of the organic matter decay/humification processes to be used as natural archives. His research has mainly focused in understanding of, during decay/humification processes, an enrichment/depletion of some macromolecules and/or a migration of low molecular weight substances and/or an isotopic ratios shift occurred, thus resulting in uncorrected reconstructions of both anthropogenic inputs and environmental changes. The research carried out by Zaccone at Foggia University is focused on i) molecular and functional characterization of fresh and humified organic matter in soils and sediments, ii) interactions between humic substances and organic/inorganic pollutants, iii) geochemistry of trace elements, radionuclides and organic pollutants: utilization of ombrotrophic profiles as archives of atmospheric depositions of these pollutants during centuries (natural vs. anthropogenic sources), iv) evolution of organic matter in soils and sediments in relation to climate changes. Results of his research activity have been published in articles in peer-reviewed journals and book chapters.