Soil is the lap of nature. It is in that soil that life flourishes. The soil protects the earth like a blanket; Prepares food for man and all other living things. There is a day for the soil; December 05. The World Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has been observing World Soil Day since 2014. The aim of this day is to create a global awareness of the importance of healthy soil and sustainable soil management.
The motto of this year’s World Soil Day is ‘Halt Soil Salinization, Boost Soil Productivity’.
The beginning and end of life on earth are in the soil. Man became civilized by cultivating the soil. The soil plays a vital role in maintaining the right balance of elements, such as carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, and in shaping the climate. Soil, which has been the mainstay of human and animal life since its inception, is now under serious threat.
The most important of these threats are salinization, which is the accumulation of excess salts in the soil, and sodification, which is the accumulation of excess sodium.
What is salinization?
Salinization is the accumulation of water-soluble salts such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, chloride, sulfate, carbonate, bicarbonate, and sodium. The salts dissolved in the soil travel with the water. As the water dries out, it settles in the soil. Excess of salts, especially sodium salts, in the soil can cause stunted plant growth. It destroys all the micro-organisms that live in the soil. As a result, the soil loses its fertility. Excess sodium significantly affects the structure of the soil. As a result, the soil becomes barren, making cultivation impossible.
There are two reasons for this bad soil. The first is natural and the second is man-made. Due to the geographical location, in some places high salinity water may mix with the topsoil, and soil structure, flooding, drought, wind, and other climatic conditions may also contribute to soil salinity. Unscientific irrigation system, excessive use of fertilizers, water pollution and discharge of industrial effluents are some of the human causes that destroy the productivity of the soil.
Plants growing in saline soils are less able to absorb water and salts. In addition, such soils can accumulate toxins that are harmful to plants. The World Food Program’s 2021 World Food Day aims to prevent salinization, protect soil health, promote community health, and educate the world on the need to combine healthy habitat and human well – being.
Chronicles of the day
2002 – The idea of a day for the soil is first mooted by the International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS). Subsequently, under the leadership of the King of Thailand, steps were taken in collaboration with the Global Soil Partnership.
2013 – The concept of World Soil Day (WSD) is unanimously approved at the World Food Program meeting in June. They approached the United Nations for official recognition of the day and the United Nations General Assembly in December 2013.
The day was approved at the 68th General Assembly.
December 05, 2014 – The first official celebration of ‘World Soil Day’.
According to the World Health Organization, about 33% of the earth’s soil is depreciated. The rate of soil erosion is dangerously high today.
Il Soil Pollution is the biggest threat to global food security. Contaminants such as chemicals, plastics, electronic waste, and untreated wastewater, which are mass-produced worldwide, can contaminate the food chain and cause serious health problems.
It is estimated that 1.5 million hectares of farmland are wasted every year due to excessive salinity in the soil.
Rising soil salinity causes an annual crop loss of about `230 crore.
It is estimated that about 83 crore hectares of soils in the world are less productive due to salinity. That is, about 8.7 percent of the earth. The World Food Program (WFP) has released a global map of saline soils. Most of it is relatively arid in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
English Summary : World soil day