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Co-Organisers: Global Soil Partnership (GSP), Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils (ITPS), Science-Policy Interface (SPI) of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), Joint FAO/IAEA Programme of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture
The objective of GSER19 under the theme ‘Stop soil erosion, Save our future’ is to establish a common platform to present and discuss the latest information on the status of interventions and innovations in the field of soil erosion and related land management. GSER19 aims to translate scientific and policy evidence into decisions and actions to minimise soil erosion for increased food security, ecosystem services, and promote the restoration of eroded sites.
At the session on “Best Practices and Policy to Face Soil Erosion”, UNU-FLORES researcher Dr Lulu Zhang will speak about reinforcing water and climate co-benefits in actions to control soil erosion.
Soil erosion is one of the ten major soil threats identified in the 2015 Status of the World’s Soil Resources report. It is defined as the removal of soil particles, soil aggregates, organic matter, and nutrients from the land surface through three major pathways: water, wind, and tillage. Soil erosion can affect soil quality by removing the highly fertile topsoil and exposing the subsurface horizon that has low organic matter content. This process can result in soil structure degradation, nutrient loss, poor microbial activity, and even soil salinity.
Soil erosion poses a major threat to global food security and to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As confirmed at the UNFCCC COP23 in 2018, soil health is key to combating climate change. In this context, soil erosion control can be related to the achievement of SDG13 and further extended to the SDGs 2, 3, 6, and 15 on food security, clean water provision, desertification, and halting biodiversity loss, respectively.
The Global Symposium on Soil Erosion (GSER19) represents a critical step towards the implementation of the Voluntary Guidelines for Sustainable Soil Management (VGSSM) in terms of minimising the risk of soil erosion. The intent is to identify effective and ineffective Sustainable Soil Management (SSM) practices, techniques, instruments, and mechanisms which will shed light on where the gaps and challenges are in terms of science, technology, and legislation. The fundamental link between soil erosion control and the achievement of the SDGs will be highlighted and discussed as well as the economics of soil erosion.