(The writer is a Subject Matter Specialist (Agricultural Economics) & PhD Scholar Assam Agricultural University, Assam. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)
(World Soil Health Day)
Why should we stop soil pollution?
We cannot deny the relevance and importance of the great proverb “Health is Wealth”. In fact, this proverb is equally applicable to the very health our great mother earth-soil who is our food donor. So, if we want to have sufficient and adequate food every year without compromising its quality aspects, then it is only the healthy soil which can always produce food with optimum productivity and profitability for our increasing human population. Therefore, we all have to stop the menace of soil pollution because only healthy soil is capable of maintaining food security, socio-economic development on a sustainable basis and peace and happiness among mankind. Controlling soil pollution will also help in procuring healthy soil for cultivating food crops by our future human generations who will be our future guardians of agriculture, food security, growth and development with peace and tranquility. So, there is a very urgent need to take every possible step to control soil pollution. That is why the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations very suitably decided the Theme of World Soil Day on 5th December, 2018 as “Be the Solution to Soil Pollution” which is very suitable not only for this year but also in every future years.
So, collective and effective steps like sustainable agriculture or organic agriculture, sustainable development projects/schemes, using fertilization on the basis of soil health card report, sustainable use of irrigation and other chemicals, vermicompost, afforestation and proper soil reclamation measures, changing cropping pattern with alternate cultivation of leguminous crops, control and prevention of soil erosion, flood, drought and minimization of environmental pollution in due space and time can give us a very sustainable soil health where entire mankind can have a very peaceful and sustainable way of human life. As human beings are responsible for the degradation of soil health, there must be a very effective mass sensitization or motivational awareness activity in every nook and corner of our world. Of course, Indian government is putting emphasis in providing soil health card (SHC) to all its famers.
SHC is a printed report of soil which depicts the nutrient status and physical parameter of soil along a recommendation about fertilizers and soil amendment measures to enhance the productivity of crops with minimum cost. The expert department or institutions capable of accomplishing this great job are -. Our farmers can approach their nearby State Agricultural Department, Agricultural Universities, Research Institutions and Krishi Vigyan Kendra for obtaining their individual soil health card which at present is free of cost. But in order to have 100 percent SHC for our esteemed farmers there is urgent need of massive and mass awareness, motivation and sensitization of our farming community about the importance and urgency of having an individual soil health card.
In this journey, our media sector can help in sensitizing and motivating our farming community in particular and other people in general to care and maintain our soil health with the adoption of sustainable system of human activities through timely and regular publication and broadcasting of appropriate literature, documentary and live demonstration and awareness programmes. So let’s care, maintain and use our soil organically and holistically by the process of effective public and private partnership, cooperation and dedication with the active participation of the whole world community within a due period of timeframe. So, let’s hope for the best and work for the best. (Concluded)