Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Global Soil Week 2013 “Losing Ground?”

27-31 October 2013.  Berlin, Germany. The second Global Soil Week was on the theme “Losing Ground?”. It brought together more than 450 scientists, policy makers and practitioners from 71 countries. A comprehensive report by IISD is available for download↓.

Summaries for each day can be found below.

UNDERSTAND the role of soils in the Nexus of water, energy and food security. Scrutinizing the relevance of an EU legislative framework for soils. Discussing the economics of land degradation. Exploring other dimensions of what “losing ground” means for the Nexus.
→ Summary of Monday, 28 October 2013
→ Video: Kick-Off video
→ Video: “Touching Ground” plenary
→ Video: Focus I: “Understand Soils in the Nexus” plenary
MANAGE the Nexus. What approaches and strategies ensure the sustainable use of soils and land in order to achieve water, energy and food security? Thinking about the role of soil for the development of Sustainable Development Goals and in other respects.
→ Summary of Tuesday, 29 October 2013
→ Video: Focus II: “Manage the Nexus” plenary
→ Video: “Review” plenary
CREATE pathways towards sustainable soil management and responsible land governance. Specifying ways to shape land investments. Discussing transdisciplinary communication on soil issues. Bridging land degradation and poverty.
→ Summary of Wednesday, 30 October 2013→Video: Focus III: “Creating pathways to societal change” plenary
→ Video: “Ways Forward” plenary
DEEPEN the Debates: Opening up the space for in-depth discussions to bridge various perspectives. Updating on political processes at a European and global level.
→ Thursday workshops
Donor agencies are often looking for miracles over short-term. They should change this way of thinking. Soil cannot show miracles over short time. It takes one rain storm to destroy soil, but years to restore it,” University of Ohio professor Rattan Lal told Devex on the sidelines of the Global Soil Week held in Berlin, where former Finnish leader Tarja Halonen defended sustainable soil as the most cost-effective way to eradicate poverty.
Welcome & Introduction:Prof. Dr. Dr. Klaus Töpfer, Executive Director, IASS – Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (Germany)
Speakers:Tarja Halonen, Co-chair, High-level Panel of the UN Secretary-General on Global Sustainability (USA)
Tanja Gönner, Chair of the Management Board, GIZ – Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (Germany)
Janez Potočnik, Commissioner for the Environment, European Commission (Belgium); joins the Kick-Off via video View Janez @ 54:26 minutes
Torgny Holmgren, Executive Director, SIWI – Stockholm International Water Institute (Sweden)
Vandana Shiva, Board member, International Forum on Globalization (India)  View Vandana @ 1:00:00 minutes

Moderator: Camilla Toulmin, Director, IIED – International Institute for Environment and Development (United Kingdom)
Speakers:Fon Nsoh, Coordinator, COMINSUD – Community Initiative for Sustainable Development (Cameroon)
Maria Betti, Director Institute for Environment and Sustainability, European Commission, Joint Research Centre, (Italy)
Johan Kuylenstierna, Executive Director, SEI – Stockholm Environment Institute (Sweden)
Martin Yemefack, President, ASSS – Africa Soil Science Society; Senior Research Officer (MR), IRAD and UMMISCO University Yaoundé (Cameroon) View Martin @ 10:43 minutes

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