By Solomon Duah, Communications Specialist, CABI Ghana
There is a growing interest and enthusiasm in the production of soybean among farmers in selected states in Nigeria as new yield-enhancing and soil fertility-improving technologies are being introduced to them through an integrated farmer education campaign. Continue reading
[Image credit: FAO]
“Caring for the Planet from the Ground” is the theme of this year’s World Soil Day (#worldsoilday). World Soil Day (WSD) is an annual campaign aimed at raising awareness of the critical importance of healthy soils and advocating for the sustainable management of global soil resources. In June 2013, the FAO Conference endorsed WSD and requested for it to be officially adopted at the 68th UN General Assembly. As a result, 5 December 2014 was designated as the first official WSD. So why is soil so important and why should we care about the health of it?
Land degradation is the result of a number of largely human-induced factors, such as poor soil and water management practices, deforestation, overgrazing, improper crop rotation and unsustainable land use. In turn, these can significantly affect soil fertility, resulting in diminished crop yields and food insecurity. Traditional methods of modelling and monitoring soil erosion usually require a large number of parameters and many years of taking measurements. However, over the past decade, nuclear technologies and isotopic techniques have been introduced, which can effectively assess the soil and water status of an area, as well as identifying hot spots of land degradation. But how does it work?