Every year on 5th of December World Soil Day celebrated to focus attention on the importance of healthy soil and to advocate for the sustainable management of soil resources. The day was chosen because it corresponds with the official birthday of the late H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, King of Thailand, who was one of the main proponents of this initiative.
Under the leadership of the Kingdom of Thailand and within the framework of the Global Soil Partnership, FAO has supported the formal establishment of ‘World Soil Day’ as a global awareness raising platform.
In December 2013, the UN General Assembly responded by designating 5 December 2014 as the first official World Soil Day. Plants nurture a whole world of creatures in the soil, that in return feed and protect the plants. This diverse community of living organisms keeps the soil healthy and fertile. This vast world constitutes soil biodiversity and determines the main biogeochemical processes that make life possible on Earth.
Soil is a living resource, home to more than 25 percent of our planet’s biodiversity. It is estimated that only one percent of soil microorganism species are currently known compared to 80 percent of plant species. Up to 90 percent of living organisms live or spend part of their lifecycle in soils.
This year, addressed to increasing challenges of soil management, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) campaign ‘Keep soil alive, protect soil biodiversity’ aims to raise awareness of the importance of sustaining healthy ecosystems and human well-being. By encouraging people around the world to engage in proactively improving soil health, the campaign also aims to fight soil biodiversity loss.