Third Party Articles

Academic, opinion and thought-pieces from Alliance members and supporters.


Ellen Fay, SSA

July 2020

Why asking how 'many harvests are left' misses the point. For many years, perhaps decades, there was a resounding silence as far as soils are concerned. 

Matt Aitkenhead, James Hutton Institute / Aidan Keith, UK CEH

March 2020

Why is it necessary to monitor soil carbon? For many reasons, both old and new. In the last 150 years, soil organic matter (which is 50-60% carbon) has gained greater acknowledgement as a vital ingredient of soil health…

Abby Rose, Soilmentor

December 2019

Learnings from Al Gore’s Climate Underground conference: The ‘sinking carbon’ question was one of the most debated topics at the conference. One of the key themes of the first panel was the idea of optimising farming approaches for soil health as opposed to carbon sequestration…

Matthew Orman, SSA

December 2019

It would be a shame and a mistake to overlook the progress that the environment as an issue has made since 2017. As a soil-focused organisation we’ve considered the manifestos through the prism of agro-environment policies, including nature-based solutions in the battle against climate change….

Simon Parfey, SoilBioLab

September 2019

When we look down at the dark soil, what can we see? Thousands upon millions of bacteria - all like little stars. Microorganisms working away, binding the soil & generating food for plants whilst living their microscopic existence.

Eliza Jenkins, Sectormentor

June 2019

At Sectormentor for Soils - an on-farm soil health monitoring & assessment system - we’ve been researching the science behind earthworms. Here we summarise 4 of our favourite papers from the European Journal of Soil Science.

Matthew Orman, SSA

June 2019

On the day of release of the Environment Agency report for England, the State of the Environment: Soil, SSA Director Matthew reflects on soil’s current place in policy and the significance of the highlighted soil health problems & solutions.

Rebekah Smith

March 2019

Cotton accounts for c.40% of global textile production. Key issues relating to cotton and soil management are chemical use, fertility depletion, pollution & erosion.

Iain Fraser, University of Kent

March 2019

There are many benefits associated with optimal soil management not captured by the market and ignored when making decisions on soil management.

Richard Smith, Environment Agency

February 2019

I have been working for the last 30 years dealing with runoff causing pollution and flooding, and have dealt with many soil problems over this period.

Yog Watkins, Westcountry Rivers Trust

February 2019

There is a growing interest in the use of natural flood management to slow the flow of water through river catchments.

Richard Morrish, Consultant

January 2019

Engineers view soils solely as a building material. They are only really concerned with their bearing strength, drainage capabilities and whether they harbour any contaminants. Architects have little interest in soils beyond the engineer’s advice for foundation design.

Sue Everett, Ecologist

January 2019

A new study has found pesticide residues in the soils of 11 European countries in 6 different cropping systems…

Iain Fraser, University of Kent

December 2018

The new Agriculture Bill marks a profound change in design, delivery and rationale of UK agricultural policy...

Geoffrey Matthews, International Consultant

October 2018

Prof Dieter Helm signals the beginning of a 25 year challenge to operationalize ‘development for sustainable survival’…

Iain Fraser, University of Kent

September 2018

The 25 YEP has implications for future policy design, implementation (especially compliance monitoring, regulation and enforcement) and evaluation…

Anna Krzywoszynska, University of Sheffield

July 2018

The critical tension between a farmer’s environmental responsibility and need for productivity was laid bare at Groundswell’s recent event on soil regeneration….

Craig Sams, Carbon Gold

May 2018

Forestry and farming are the cheapest and most effective routes to taking carbon out of the atmosphere and sequestering it in soil, trees and buildings….

Sign up to receive SSA news, reports and updates.
The SSA is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. We decided not to set up a charity because that would limit some activities such as campaigning on government policies. With a not-for-profit company the directors don’t benefit from profits and money raised is spent on company aims.

SUSTAINABLE SOILS ALLIANCE NON-PROFIT COMMUNITY INTEREST COMPANY NO. 10802764