International Year of Soils announces March's theme

The Soil Science Society of America has developed monthly themes to demonstrate the value of soil, as part of their 2015 International Year of Soils celebration: this month is focused on the importance of soil in agriculture.

Soil provides a foundation for plant growth; however, less than 11 percent of the world’s surface is arable. Protecting the remaining land is important because it can take more than 500 years to create two centimeters of topsoil.

Through using crop protection products, farmers are able to practice conservation tillage to evade disruption of the soil.

“With an ever-decreasing amount of arable land, it is imperative to keep soil healthy,” Jay Vroom, president and CEO of CropLife America, said. “Precision agriculture and the advancement of crop protection products allow farmers to properly adjust and react to varying conditions in their fields. This exactness is the basis of modern agriculture—giving farmers the ability to increase yields while reducing the environmental impact.”

The UN's Food and Agricultural Organization launched the International Year of Soils program on Dec. 4, 2014. The goal of the program is to increase awareness about the importance of soil for ecosystem functions and food security.

Organizations in this story

Soil Science Society of America 5585 Guilford Rd Madison, WI 53711

CropLife America 1156 15th St NW Washington, DC 20005

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