08 Feb

Fall Issue No. 67, 2015 Celebrating International Year of Soil

Celebrating the International Year of Soils – A Year in the Life of a Soil Management Specialist

By Marla Riekman, Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development

The year 2015 has been declared the International Year of Soils by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. This designation has provided a great opportunity to promote the importance of soil as the base for agricultural production, but has been a little perplexing too, since for a soil management specialist like me, every year should be a celebration of soils!

To highlight the importance of soils, the FAO’s website lists six key messages with regards to the International Year of Soils:

  • Healthy soils are the basis for healthy food production.
  • Soils are the foundation for vegetation which is cultivated or managed for feed, fibre, fuel and medicinal products.
  • Soils support our planet's biodiversity and they host a quarter of the total.
  • Soils help to combat and adapt to climate change by playing a key role in the carbon cycle.

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