The meeting with the Consumers and Environment Category of Group III of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) took place on June 21.
The PowerPoint presentation (in English) presented the following topics: a brief presentation of the SIP Forum, its activities in Italy and at European level; soil as a fundamental life element; soil and the European dimension; soil= “brown gold”; the need to take individual action; the specific role of the EESC (supporting a study on different ‘soil’ actors’ perceptions, which would create a neutral platform for direct confrontation); and finally, recommendations from the various actors present, in order to evaluate a new strategy for soil protection in the EU.
There were two main recommendations: reinforcing communication and contact all over Europe with civil society associations and organisations who do not have soil as a priority; secondly, establishing dialogue with interested actors (ie. constructors, farmers, planners, administrators…)
Comments from members of the Category and the debate which followed drew special attention to: the complexity of soil-related action; the need for educational-related action for various school levels; the rise of the population at global and European level; the turn to ‘soil fertility-friendly’ agricultural activities; how to confront the contradictions of the Common Agricultural Policy; awareness of soil’s eco-systemic functions; importance of soil and its positive contribution to reducing climate change related problems; safeguard of soil in the context of rights related to climate change; how to select land to build establishments without clashing with agricultural or rural activities; special attention to pollution coming from pesticides and chemical fertilizers.
The members of the Category saw this meeting as a first explanatory moment. Availability to closely follow the initiatives proposed by the SIP Forum were made plenty.
A copy of the presentation is available here in pdf format: https://angelidelsuolo.files.wordpress.com/2017/06/soil-brown-gold-eesc_cese_21-june_simplified.pdf or upon request to firstname.lastname@example.org.