World Soil Day

Soil is essential for agricultural production, its quality and abundance a key factor in agricultural productivity. (Photo: ‘lanier67’ Flickr)
Soil is essential for agricultural production, its quality and abundance a key factor in agricultural productivity. (Photo: ‘lanier67’ Flickr)

Raising awareness of one of our most precious resources  

Soil is one of the most complicated biological materials on our planet. There are more than 100,000 different types of soil, home to an incredibly diverse community of plants, animals and microbes. When setting foot on soil, most people are unaware that they stand on trillions of organisms - 5 tonnes of animal life can live in 1 hectare of soil.

Soil and its bio diverse populations contribute more than US $760 billion a year in ecosystem services; soil organisms are vital for maintaining soil quality, balanced ecosystems and agricultural production - soil is undoubtedly essential for life on earth.

The International Union of Soil Science (IUSS) has declared the 5th of December ‘World Soil Day’, a day to reflect on the importance of soil, the threats that it faces and, the need to sustainably manage this precious resource.

Soil is essential for agricultural production, its quality and abundance a key factor in agricultural productivity; soil conservation has always been important, but it is now very much in the spotlight as the world comes to terms with the need for action on global food security.

The European Crop Protection Association (ECPA) is committed to enhancing biodiversity and natural habitats within farming landscapes. As a key stakeholder in European agriculture, ECPA and its members uses its expertise in plant protection and agricultural practices in order to promote local harmony between nature and agriculture. “A pesticide needs to stay in the treated area long enough to produce the desired effect and then it should degrade into harmless materials. Nevertheless, the responsible use of pesticides is fundamental for user safety and soil protection and ECPA, together with its members and its partners, is striving to ensure continued user training programs to this effect” says Friedhelm Schmider, Director General of ECPA, underlining commitment to biodiversity conservation.

 

Read the ECPA publication ‘Agriculture and Soil Biodiversity’

Open publication (read online)

application/pdf iconDownload the Soil Biodiversity & Agriculture report (5.7Mb)

 

 

Further information:

The International Union of Soil Science http://www.iuss.org

ECPA biodiversity publications http://www.ecpa.eu/page/publications-environmental-protection

European Commission ‘Soil atlas of Europe’ http://eusoils.jrc.ec.europa.eu/projects/soil_atlas/index.html