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The Northeast Regional Soil Judging Contest will be hosted by Penn State University on Friday, October 7, 2016. Volunteers are needed. Please click below for more information on ways to help.

After the Soil Judging Contest, please plan to attend the PAPSS Annual Meeting on Saturday, October 8, 2016 in nearby Petersburg, PA. 

Employment Opportunity


DelVal Soil & Environmental Consultants, Inc., an environmental consulting firm located in Doylestown, PA is looking to fill an opening for a full time, entry to mid-level, Soil Scientist.

Potential Job Responsibilities:

  • Perform construction inspections and testing using a nuclear density gauge
  • Perform soil laboratory analyses such as sieve, atterberg, proctor, and particle size analyses
  • Perform percolation and double ring infiltration testing
  • Measure well water levels
  • Planting of wetland mitigation areas
  • Perform soil test excavations and soil profile descriptions for sewage and stormwater systems
  • Stake out of sewage disposal areas using survey equipment
  • Prepare septic system design plans
  • Maintain detailed field notes
  • Report preparation

Requirements for the position are as follows:

  • Degree in Soil Science/Agronomy/Environmental Science or related field
  • Ability to carry 65 lbs.,  fit for extended periods of physical activity, and work outside in all weather conditions
  • Ability to prepare detailed soil profile descriptions, soil judging experience a plus
  • Must be flexible, detailed oriented, and work well with others
  • Quick learner with an interest in various aspects of environmental consulting
  • Ability to read plans and maps
  • Good communication skills
  • CAD Experience a plus
  • PA Sewage Enforcement Officer Certification a plus
  • Ability to work varying schedules
  • Reliable transportation, valid driver’s license and clean driving record

If interested, please send resume to


July 14, 2015, the PA Senate unanimously adopted Senate Resolution 169 recognizing Pennsylvania's observance of 2015 as the "International Year of Soils" with bipartisan sponsorship of 10 Republicans and 5 Democrats. Prime sponsor is Senator Elder Vogel (R-Beaver), Majority Chair of the Senate Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee.  Additional sponsors include Senators:

- Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson), Senate President Pro Tempore

- Judy Schwank (D-Berks), Minority Chair of the Senate Agriculture & Rural Affairs Committee and former Dean of Delaware Valley University's Agricultural & Environmental Sciences Program

- Gene Yaw (R-Lycoming), Majority Chair, Senate Environmental Resources & Energy Committee

- Camera Bartolotta (R-Greene/Washington)

- John Eichelberger (R-Blair)

- Mario Scavello (R-Monroe)

- Dave Argall (R-Schuylkill)

- Ryan Aument (R-Lancaster)

- Andy Dinniman (D-Chester)

- Frank Fontana (D-Allegheny)

- Stewart Greenleaf (R-Montgomery)

- Rob Teplitz (D-Dauphin)

- Randy Vulakovich (R-Allegheny)

- Chritina Tartaglione (D-Phila.)

The text of Senate Resolution 169 follows:






Recognizing 2015 as the "International Year of Soils" in Pennsylvania.

WHEREAS, The 68th United Nations General Assembly declared 2015 as the "International Year of Soils"; and

WHEREAS, Pennsylvania's many agricultural and natural resource industries depend on an understanding of soil diversity and soil fertility requirements in order to produce commodities for our communities; and

WHEREAS, In addition to producing commodities, soil filters water, acts as a rooting support for plants that provide the oxygen we breathe and the fibers for our materials, contains anti-producing bacteria and acts as a structural support for our infrastructure; and

WHEREAS, Soil scientists work collaboratively with professionals of other disciplines, such as professional geologists, surveyors and civil engineers, to service the needs of thousands of businesses to help them meet their respective  goals in both urban and rural settings; and

WHEREAS, Many Pennsylvania academic institutions, including The Pennsylvania State University, Delaware Valley University and Bloomsburg University, have well-established academic programs which educate individuals in the practice and science of soil; and

WHEREAS, Members of the Pennsylvania Association of Professional Soil Scientists have undertaken an important role in informing this Commonwealth's residents, businesses and municipalities about the need to understand the importance of soil science;  Therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the Senate recognize 2015 as the "International Year of Soils" in order to increase awareness of the importance of soil and soil science to residents of this Commonwealth.


It is PAPSS' position that the licensing of soil scientists is necessary to protect the consumer, provide a high degree of professionalism and ethics, and promote the use of basic standards within the soil science community. In 2011, the PAPSS Board of Directors released "The Case for Licensing of Soil Scientists in PA". Those who are more familiar with the specific issues surrounding the proposed licensing of soil scientists in PA understand the need to more appropriately define a "soil scientist". While PA DEP regulations, guidance documents, and municipal ordinances have recognized and adopted the term "soil scientist", very few have provided a commensurate definition that recognizes the specialty of the profession.

Version 3.0 of the Field Book for Describing and Sampling Soils is now available from the NRCS.  The digital version is available here and hard copies can be ordered here.

Thanks to Ed White for submitting past issues of PENNSOIL.  The Archive now contains a total of 35 back issues, the oldest issue from October 1986. As always, please feel free to contribute information or photographs for the website.

Click Here for the PAPSS Position Paper on PA DEP's Alternate Technology Listings.  

Click Here for a very interesting article that correlates the relationship between the Cretaceous coastline, soils, and modern day politics (thanks to Joshua Gross, P.E. for sending this link)

The PAPSS Scholarship Application form is available for download here.  PAPSS encourages all eligible and interested persons to apply. Please direct any questions regarding the application form and process to 

Be sure to check out the PAPSS Facebook page for additional information about the Association and industry related news!

Here is a link to a NY Times article that discusses how the U.S. Dept. of the Interior will allow periodic flow increases at the Glen Canyon Dam to help the Colorado River replenish sediment in downstream ecosystems:

Please check the "Issues and Licensing" Page for the latest information and links on the Professional Soil Scientists licensing effort through the Pennsylvania Legislature.

SSSA is offering a distance leaning course titled "Fundamentals in Soil Science".  CEUs will likely be offered as well. Click Here for a link to course and registration information.



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