LIFE and soil protection
European Commission. Directorate-General for the Environment
PublisherLuxembourg : Publications Office of the European Union
MetadataShow full item record
Soil is linked to everything around us. However, we still are not aware of its importance for life and the economy. Soils provide vital ecosystem functions, playing an important role in food production, the water cycle and the provision of renewable materials, such as timber. Their carbon storage capacity is essential to the fight against climate change and soil biodiversity is vital to soil fertility and wider biodiversity. Soil is also a finite resource, meaning that once it is degraded, it is lost for future generations. The unsustainable use of soil threatens both the quality and quantity of Europe’s soil stocks with major ramifications for important concerns such as food security (up to 80% of land lost to urban sprawl in recent years has been agricultural land). The importance of soil sustainability is highlighted in the European Commission’s Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection, suggesting a common and coherent European approach and the Roadmap to a Resource Efficient Europe. In response to the many challenges threatening soil sustainability, the Commission has supported the international soil conservation commitments of the Global Soil Partnership of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the European Landscape Convention of the Council of Europe. Although soil has not been a core theme of LIFE, the programme has funded many soil-related projects since its launch in 1992, and there has been an increasing focus on soil protection since the publication of the Thematic Strategy in 2006. LIFE has co-financed actions targeting erosion, landslides, contamination, loss of soil organic matter, sealing, compaction, and other soil management issues. This LIFE Focus publication thus provides an opportunity to highlight and assess LIFE’s important contribution to date, including proposals for ways in which LIFE’s outputs may be better channeled and have an even greater impact in future. The publication includes an overview of soil policy, analysis of LIFE’s contribution to its implementation and interviews that link soil science to policy-making to practical action.
Citation“2014. LIFE and soil protection. Luxembourg : Publications Office of the European Union.”
Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged ; European Union.European Union document