By Faith Peppers
University of Georgia
“Professor Cabrera is one of the leading soil chemists in the world,” said J. Scott Angle, dean and director of the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. “The Georgia Power Professorship recognizes his standing within his discipline. He will be working to find ways for his ideas to enhance the quality of our environment.”
An internationally recognized expert in soil, water and waste management, Cabrera earned a Bachelor of Science degree in agronomy from Universidad de la República in Uruguay in 1978. From Kansas State University, he earned a Master of Science in 1982 and doctorate degree in agronomy in 1986.
He joined UGA in 1990 with a joint appointment in the CAES and Odum School of Ecology. His research focuses on issues related to animal manure (poultry litter in particular) and application to cropland and pastureland as fertilizer.
He has conducted research on nitrogen processes associated with potential environmental contamination and has assessed the bioavailability of trace metals in soils amended with organic wastes. He also evaluated management practices to remediate soils containing environmentally excessive amounts of phosphorus and undesirable organic compounds. He complemented soil research with studies on quality of surface runoff from contaminated soils.
The professorship, established in February 2006, will create a nationally and internationally recognized research program at UGA on the chemical speciation, fate, transport and effects of metal, metalloid, radionuclide and organic contaminants resulting from industrial and energy-generating activities and by-products.
“In this new position, I will expand my soil research program to include evaluation of energy industry by-products such as flue-gas desulfurization gypsum as soil amendments,” Cabrera said.
(Faith Peppers is a news editor for the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)