Headline: European Regional Soil Partnership established

European partners to the Global Soil Partnership, an initiative of the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations), met at the Global Soil Week 2013 in Berlin and decided to establish a European Regional Soil Partnership. Together with the Regional Soil Partnerships in Asia, Africa, South America, Central America, the Caribbean and the Near East it will serve as a hub to channel regional soil issues to the Global Soil Partnership.

The Regional Soil Partnerships should provide guidance on regional goals and priorities and the required implementation mechanisms. In particular, they should facilitate links with national and local soil management programmes and activities with a view to strengthening work on soils and to develop synergies with other relevant initiatives and activities.

The Joint Research Centre of the European Commission in Ispra (Italy) was appointed as the Secretariat of the European Soil Partnership. Furthermore, the establishment of a Sub-regional Soil Partnership within the European Soil Partnership was supported. The Secretariat of Eurasian Partnership would be based in Moscow (Russian Federation).

At the same workshop, an ad-hoc Steering Committee for the European Regional Soil Partnership was established. The members are:

  • European Commission (Joint Research Centre)
  • Soil Science and Conservation Research Institute, Slovakia
  • Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS), Germany
  • Eurasian Centre for Food Security (ECFS), Russian Federation
  • European Soil Bureau Network (ESBN)

The launch meeting of the Eurasian Sub-Regional Partnership will take place in Moscow on 20 November 2013.

European members of the Global Soil Partnership that signed the communiqué:

  • European Commission: Luca Marmo, Luca Montanarella
  • Euro Geo Surveys Representative: Rainer Baritz
  • Eurasian Centre for Food Security: Pavel Krasilnikov
  • UUPOP: Jaroslava Sobocka
  • European Soil Bureau Network: Allan Lilly
  • Aarhus Universitet: Mogeuss H. Greve
  • Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies: Jes Weigelt, Ivonne Lobos Alva
  • European Society for Soil Conservation: Frank Glante