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Centella asiatica is one of the tropical plants that have proven most effective in natural remediation practices for contaminated soils. Photo: Rejin Narayanan Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)Rejin Narayanan Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Tropical plants provide a solution for heavy metal-contaminated soils

According to a study by NTU Singapore twelve plants proven effective in phytoremediation of soils contaminated with cadmium, arsenic, lead and chromium. The findings confirm the potential of nature-based -interventions
Soil health issue at the center of the #Soils4Nutrition photo contest, launched by FAO as part of the Global Symposium on Soils for Nutrition in July. Photo: CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution required CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution required

FAO is launching a photo contest dedicated to soil issues

Soil value is the focus of #Soils4Nutrition, the new photo contest launched by FAO. From war consequences to the micronutrient challenge, food security is increasingly in the spotlight. Submission closes on July 10
In EU, annual per capita expenditure on organic products has reached 102 euros. Photo: Myfruit.it Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)Myfruit.it Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

European organic farming keeps growing as market sets record high

Organic land in Europe covers more than 17 million hectares, with a 5.3% increase year on year. But the biggest surge comes from consumers: in the midst of the pandemic, sales mark the highest growth of the decade.
According to a Chinese-British research, the low presence of some elements in the soil seems to be correlated to a higher mortality rate in Covid-19 cases. Photo: pxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution requiredpxhere CC0 Public Domain Free for personal and commercial use No attribution required

Soil health and Covid-19 immune response could be linked, scientists say

A Chinese-British research identifies a statistical correlation between the concentration of zinc, iron, copper and selenium in soil and the outcome of Covid-19 cases: the lower the concentration, the higher the fatality rate. The investigation suggests a link between the two events. But further studies will be needed
The resolution passed on Wednesday, March 2 in Nairobi aims to drastically reduce plastic production and consumption worldwide. Photo: UNEP Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)UNEP Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

UN agrees to introduce a legally binding agreement on plastic in 2024

A new committee will work toward global regulation of plastic industry. By the end of 2024, countries will have to commit to implementing new manufacturing and design solutions based on circular economy principles
The U.S. crop feed industry uses more than 100,000 tons of pesticides annually. Photo: U.S. Department of Agriculture Public Domain Mark 1.0 U.S. Department of Agriculture Public Domain Mark 1.0

The hidden cost of U.S. meat? 107K tons of pesticides, says The Independent

Negli Stati Uniti l’industria dei mangimi continua a fare ampio uso di pesticidi nelle colture di soia e grano per l’alimentazione animale. Nel mirino, rileva il quotidiano britannico, l’atrazina e il glifosato. Sostanze pericolose per l’uomo, gli animali e il suolo
The banned pesticides have been exported to 20 countries. Photo: Hamish John Appleby (IWMI) Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)Photo: Hamish John Appleby (IWMI) Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

UK exported seven home-banned pesticides

British authorities have banned several hazardous pesticides. However, a loophole allows companies to sell them abroad, a Greenpeace report has revealed. The list features herbicides, fungicides and insecticides. Including a neonicotinoid causing large-scale adverse effects on bees.
Contamination and plastic pollution in soils are even greater than those affecting the seas and oceans.

Pollution, there is more plastic in agricultural land than in the oceans

FAO produced the first report on the use of plastics in agri-food systems. Pollution is pervasive, especially in Asia. The solutions revolve around the "6Rs": reject, redesign, reduce, reuse, recycle and recover. It is essential to invest in the search for alternative products
Soil analysis of the Mayon volcano in the Philippines has revealed some promising species of bacteria. Photo: Patryk Reba Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)Patryk Reba Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Soil bacteria from a volcano bring new hope for cancer treatment

Scientists from the University of Los Baños have isolated 30 bacteria species found at the Mayon volcano, in the north of the country. One of them seems to have relevant antibiotic and antitumor properties.
An app developed in Ireland provides a multi-level soil diagnosis. Photo: Pxfuel Free for commercial use, DMCAPxfuel Free for commercial use, DMCA

How’s your soil doing? Ask this Irish app

The app allows you to analyze the health of your soil and suggests how to manage it. An example of technology applied to soil protection.