“Within one generation what must be done to reverse soil declines and how do we achieve and measure restoration?”

Soil that provides life for all terrestrial organisms (including humans) is a finite resource

The nature of the crisis for humans is that under current trends there is a finite number of generations of harvests remaining. We seek to address these issues in a Step-Change Soils in Crisis Conference.

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The outcome of the conference will commission a report capable of doing for soils what the Stern Report did for climate change. It will assess the risk of arriving at a tipping point in soil sustainability and the economic cost of getting this wrong at various stages, in order to determine the urgency and type of benchmarks needed to achieve sustainability.

The conference will address the challenge of a national and global crisis of our soils.

It is conceived as a landmark event for change, convened to attract and engage the broadest possible community to commit to the common purpose of soil recovery and sign up to realisable goals in achieving generational soil health. We aim for over 100 organisations with a primary interest in soils to sign up to a single statement to present to government.

We will:

Face head on the real crisis in the degradation and health of our soils and what this threat poses to future harvests and human survival

Pave the way for constructive collaboration with milestones for restoration back to soil health within one generation

Define soil health and agree standards for measuring improvement

Break down barriers between knowledge communities

Lead to a step change in thinking and policy

Pave the way to real change on the scale of the Stern Report and Brundtland Commission

Collaboration is essential.

Knowledge flow and dialogue are vital for problem solving. We will bring together academics, soil & food entrepreneurs, thought leaders, land use stakeholders, the green sector, politicians, policy makers, campaign groups, pharmaceuticals, risk analysts, economists and health sectors.

Our goal is to forge a new paradigm of collaboration capable of transforming soil deterioration.

We aim to:

Change the way knowledge is exchanged to ensure accessible research, data & publications

Engage risk and economic disciplines to inform and direct policy

Quantify the risk at varying levels of soil decline and the consequential national cost to determine strategies for cost-benefit intervention

Formulate strategic milestones for soil health improvement

Influence realistic policy to achieve healthy soils within a defined timescale

Develop cooperative agreements on research