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Why soils matters

- A european perspective

Executive Summary

Soil is a living ecosystem

, which is essential

for human and environmental health.

A healthy living soil sustains

biodiversity, protects and nourishes

crops and contributes to climate

change mitigation and adaptation.

But soil is under threat today. We

lose an estimated 24 billion tons of

fertile soil each year due to erosion,

while many of the soil functions that

are delivered for free to provide

productive, fertile and nutritious

food systems are destroyed

because we systematically sterilise

our soils with agro-chemicals, only

for farmers to then pay to replace

those lost functions.

Without protecting the soil, bringing

it back to life and building topsoil,

it will be impossible to feed people,

to transition to a toxic-free future,

to halt the loss of biodiversity and

adapt to the challenges of climate

change and extreme weather


The objective of the conference

2015 ‘Why Soil Matters? - A

European perspective’ organised

by the Greens/EFA in the European

Parliament, was to highlight the

main concerns about soil health at

EU level as well as the existing or

potential solutions to preserve or

revive soils, the basis of our food

systems and essential to prevent

climate change.