The House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee has just released a damning report on UK soil health. “Some of the most productive agricultural land in the country is at risk of becoming unprofitable within a generation due to soil erosion,” it says. “[Although] the Government says it will ensure that all soils are managed sustainably by 2030… our inquiry suggests that the Government’s actions do not match its ambition, and casts doubt on whether we are on track to achieve the 2030 goal.”
It points out, “Soil, water and air are all essential to human life and society – but of these three, soil is often the forgotten component. Yet soil is crucial to agricultural production, climate change mitigation and adaptation, urban development, and flood risk management. Neglecting the health of our soil could lead to reduced food security, increased greenhouse gas emissions, greater flood risk, and damage to public health.”
The report concludes that the government needs a clear plan to strengthen soil protection, so that policies are not focused merely on damage limitation but encourage restoration and improvement of soil quality and organic matter.
Find out more at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-36428361 and read the full report at http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201617/cmselect/cmenvaud/180/180.pdf