UN Observance: World Soil Day, December 5

“On World Soil Day, I call for greater attention to the pressing issues affecting soils, including climate change, antimicrobial resistance, soil-borne diseases, contamination, nutrition and human health. Let us build on the International Year of Soils 2015, the International Year of Pulses 2016, and all the activities supporting sustainable soil management to generate more hectares of healthy soils everywhere”

(UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon)

Man hands holding a green young plant

2016 Theme: “Soils and pulses, a symbiosis for life”

The positive contributions of pulses to soil properties are many: they fix the atmosphere nitrogen and improve its biodiversity, fertility and structure.

Green plant growing trough dead soilThat is the reason why the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) dedicates this year World Soil Day to the pulses. Also, owing to their nutritional benefits, 2016 was declared the International Year of Pulses.

The campaign aims to connect people with soils and raise awareness on their critical importance in our lives.

Soil is an essential resource and a vital part of the natural environment from which most of the global food is produced.

Green sprout growing from seed in organic soilAt the same time, soil provides living space for humans, as well as essential ecosystem services which are important for water regulation and supply, climate regulation, biodiversity conservation, carbon sequestration and cultural services. But soils are under pressure from increases in population, higher demands for food and competing land uses. Approximately 33% of our global soils are degraded and policy makers around the world are exploring opportunities to embrace sustainable development via the sustainable development goals.

How will you celebrate the World Soil Day?

The World Soil Day 2016 will be celebrated on the 5th of December at FAO headquarters in Rome, FAO regional offices and through national and local events.

Are you planning to have an event on soils?

Put your event on the map

 

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