India is losing 5,334 million tonnes of soil every year due to soil erosion made worst by excessive and mindless use of chemicals like fertilizers, pesticides and insecticides. The rate of loss is 16.4 tonnes per hectare every year, as per study conducted by Central Soil Water Conservation Research and Training Institute (CSWCRTI), Dehradun. About 1 mm of top soil is being lost each year with a total loss of 5,334 million tonnes annually due to soil erosion, Minister of State for Agriculture K. V. Thomas had said in a written reply in Rajya Sabha in 2010….
It takes 2,000 years for nature to produce a 10-centimeter (4-inch) layer of fertile soil that holds water and nutrients, and where plants can grow. Massive amounts of fertile agricultural land are lost every year. Yet we depend on this topsoil as the basis for feeding the world. So, what needs to be done to assure healthy soils and thus food security? The number of organisms living in a handful of soil outnumber all humans on the planet. They ensure that the humus layer stores nutrients and water.
After oceans, soils represent the planet’s largest carbon bank. Soils store more carbon than all the world’s forests combined. Depletion of the soil through deforestation, over-fertilization and overgrazing can turn land into desert. Climatic factors like drought become a catalyst in a chain reaction – that is set in motion by human activity.
According to official sources in China, nearly one-fifth of agricultural land there is contaminated. Whether resulting from industrial leakage, disaster or weapons, or from years of over-fertilization: once soil is contaminated, fixing the damage is costly and time-consuming; do we still want to follow in China’s footsteps ?
To protect fertile soils worldwide, the United Nations declared 2015 International Year of Soils.
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IndianBureaucracy.com hopes and prays that the Indian Government take very urgent remedial steps to insure and save the soil and food growth.