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Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Increased soil contamination puts food safety @risk - NaijaAgroNet

NaijaAgroNet:
The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) on Wednesday, marked the 2018 World Soil day with call for urgent action to reduce release of pollutants into soils, reports NaijaAgroNet.

FAO, NaijaAgroNet recalls, every 5 December 2018 in Rome commemorate the World Soil Day, saying that urgent action is needed to address soil pollution and contain the multiple threats it poses to global food safety and food security.

According to FAO, thousands of chemicals, which are commercially produced on a large scale, plastic and electronic waste, non-treated wastewater can all become a source of soil pollution, paving the way for the pollutants to enter the food chain with serious consequences for the health and wellbeing of people and planet.

"About 33 percent of all soils are degraded - and soils continue to deteriorate at an alarming rate," said Deputy Director-General Maria Helena Semedo at the World Soil Day Ceremony at FAO's Rome headquarters. "Soil acts as a filter for contaminants. But when its buffering capacity is exceeded, contaminants can enter the environment and the food chain. This undermines food security by making crops risky and unsafe for consumption".

"Human activities are the main source of soil pollution. It is in our hands to adopt sustainable soil management practices," she added.

She called "for greater political support and significantly increased investment towards healthy soils". Maintaining healthy soils helps ensure safe and nutritious foods and is essential for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and Zero Hunger.

Isaac Oyimah/GEE

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