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Soil - The importance and protection of living soil
A policy document written by the Soil Association
(Source: www.soil association.org)

  1. The functions of the soil
    The soil performs many vital functions for the environment
    and society. A healthy soil is important for:

    • maintenance of the basic resources for food
      production: soil, clean water and stable climate
    • maintenance of terrestrial and aquatic biodiversity
      (soil life is the basis of much over-ground life; healthy
      soil minimises agro-chemical pollution and nutrient
      leaching into watercourses)
    • regulating the flow of water on the planet,
      including reducing flooding
    • reducing water clean up costs (through reduction in
      pesticide and nutrient pollution)
    • reducing climate change (soil is a major carbon
      store and it reduces atmospheric methane; carbon
      dioxide and methane are major greenhouse gases)
    • reduction in the need for water for irrigation in
      agriculture
    • improvement in animal and human health through an
      increase in the nutrient content of food and reduction
      inpesticide residues

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Nurturing Nature Organics Inc. 2009