Soil Matters: Honoring World Soil Day and its Global Impact

Explore the global impact of World Soil Day, highlighting the crucial relationship between soil and water and government policy to safeguard our future.

Annually observed on December 5th, World Soil Day serves as a platform to emphasize the significance of robust soil and promote the sustainable administration of soil resources. The International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) took a significant step in 2002 by proposing this date to recognize the pivotal role of soil in the natural system and its profound impact on human well-being.

The selection of December 5th aligns with the birthday of the late H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, the King of Thailand, a key advocate for this cause. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) demonstrated its support during a June 2013 conference, unanimously endorsing World Soil Day. Subsequently, in December 2013, the 68th UN General Assembly formally declared December 5th as World Soil Day.

The theme of World Soil Day 2023

Soil and water: a source of life

The survival of our planet hinges on the vital connection between soil and water, as these foundational elements contribute to over 95 percent of our food supply. Soil moisture, essential for plants’ nutrient uptake, fosters the cohesion of our ecosystems. This interdependent relationship forms the backbone of our agricultural frameworks.

Yet, confronted by the impacts of climate change and human interventions, our soils face degradation, intensifying the strain on our water reservoirs. Erosion disrupts the natural equilibrium, diminishing water infiltration and availability across all life forms. Embracing sustainable soil management practices — such as minimum tillage, crop rotation, incorporation of organic matter, and implementing cover cropping — stands as a solution to bolster soil health. 

These practices not only curb erosion and pollution but also bolster water infiltration and retention. Moreover, they safeguard soil biodiversity, enhance fertility, and contribute significantly to carbon sequestration, playing a pivotal role in combating climate change.

Government Policies

Recognizing the paramount significance of fertile soils in India’s agricultural landscape, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Soil Health Card (SHC) scheme on February 19, 2015, in Suratgarh, Rajasthan

The scheme aims to support State Governments in providing soil health cards to every farmer across the nation. These Soil Health Cards serve as detailed reports offering farmers insights into their soil’s nutrient status and recommending suitable measures to enhance soil health and fertility through optimal nutrient application.

As part of the initiative, soil undergoes testing, yielding reports that aid farmers in determining suitable crops for cultivation while guiding them on crop selection. 

Regular soil monitoring is conducted by authorities, ensuring farmers receive updated soil data every three years. 

Additionally, the Government engages experts to assist farmers in implementing corrective measures aligned with the Soil Health Card (SHC) recommendations.


World Soil Day serves as a clarion call for action. Preserving soil health isn’t just an environmental concern; it’s a collective responsibility for safeguarding our future. By acknowledging the significance of soil, advocating for sustainable practices, and actively participating in efforts to protect this invaluable resource, we pave the way for a more resilient and sustainable world.

As World Soil Day continues to gain momentum, let us unite in our commitment to cherish, protect, and nurture the very foundation that sustains life on Earth — our precious soil.

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Mousona Poddar

A passionate Content Writer who helps to scale your business by words with excellent research skills.

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