In commemoration of World Soil Day yesterday, the Nigeria Institute of Soil Science (NISS) has called on both federal and state governments to prioritise soil and water preservation in their developmental policies.
Professor Victor Chude, the Registrar of NISS, emphasised the profound relationship between soil and water, highlighting them as the foundation of agrifood systems and essential for our environment and existence.
Chude expressed concern over soil degradation, attributing it to human activities and climate change, putting pressure on water resources.
He stressed the significance of sustainable soil management practices, such as minimum tillage, crop rotation, and cover cropping, as effective measures to improve soil health, reduce erosion, and enhance water infiltration and storage.
Quoting QU Dongyu, Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), he stated that soils are a virtual Sustainable Development Goal.
While acknowledging the discussions within the academia about the interconnectedness of soil and water management globally, Chude highlighted existing knowledge gaps.
He therefore called for intensified public awareness to address challenges posed by daily activities detrimental to healthy soil and water resources.
In celebration of World Soil Day, NISS plans a series of events, including a talk show on mass media, school projects, road walks, and guest lectures, aiming to engage citizens in improving soil health and advocating for sustainable soil management.