06 June 2024

Europe mobilizes for the future of soil

New European law to halt soil degradation and promote soil health by 2050
The European Parliament has recently adopted a significant stance on the Commission's proposal for a new Soil Monitoring Law. This marks the EU's first dedicated legislative intervention focusing solely on soil health. With 336 votes in favor, 242 against, and 33 abstentions, the law aims ambitiously to ensure healthy soils by 2050.
Goal: healthy soils by 2050
Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) have expressed strong support for the plan to achieve healthy soils by 2050. This initiative aligns with the European Union's zero pollution ambition and entails the creation of a harmonized definition of "soil health." The regulatory framework aims to establish a comprehensive and coherent monitoring system essential for promoting sustainable soil management and addressing the remediation of contaminated sites.
The role of the Global Save Soil Movement

The Save Soil movement, backed by key international organizations such as UNCCD, UNEP, UNFAO, IUCN, and the World Food Program, has been actively involved in consultations with the European Commission on this new law. Praveena Sridhar, Chief Technical Officer of Save Soil, has enthusiastically welcomed the law's approval, calling it a “vital step forward.” Sridhar emphasized the law's importance in halting the rapid degradation of soils in Europe, noting that healthy soils are crucial for food security, water security, biodiversity, and carbon sequestration potential.

Challenges and opportunities
Despite the challenges, the new law’s approval presents a significant opportunity to improve soil management. The Save Soil movement is urging governments to adopt measures ensuring agricultural soils contain between 3% and 6% organic matter. This is crucial to ensure soils are alive, healthy, and capable of thriving sustainably.
According to Sridhar, a fundamental aspect of the new law should be the inclusion of soil organic matter and microbial life levels as parameters for measuring soil health. “Only when soils are alive can their health be restored,” she explained.
Impacts of the New Legislation

The new legislation will oblige EU countries to monitor and assess the health of all soils within their territories. This monitoring will allow national authorities to apply descriptors that best illustrate the characteristics of each soil type at the local level.

Currently, it is estimated that between 60% and 70% of European soils are not in optimal health, with a negative economic impact costing the EU at least €50 billion annually. Globally, soil degradation adversely affects 3.2 billion people, and according to the FAO, by 2050, 90% of the Earth's topsoil could be at risk.

A step forward for Soil Health
The law’s approval represents a significant step toward safeguarding soil health and, consequently, our future. Collaboration among governments, international organizations, and movements like Save Soil is essential to ensure European soils can once again become a vital resource capable of supporting biodiversity and food security while contributing to the fight against climate change.
Save Soil movement continues to support governments in establishing effective soil health policies, promoting a sustainable approach that can have long-lasting positive effects not only for the environment but also for future generations.
For more information about Sadhguru and the Save Soil movement, visit savesoil.org and follow @ConsciousPlanetMovement and @CPSaveSoil on social media or write to contact.it@consciousplanet.org
Edited by editorial staff, Avion Tourism Magazine
Text source: Copyright © Conscious Planet Save Soil Press
Photo Visual: Sisterscom.com / Depositphotos
Conscious Planet Save the Soil is the movement, and each one of us can become an active part by staying informed, promoting the movement, participating in events, and raising awareness among politicians. Learn more about the movement and how to become an Earth Buddy.
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