Biotech Updates

FAO Launches World Map of Salt-Affected Soils

October 27, 2021

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has launched the Global Map of Salt-Affected Soils, a key tool for stopping salinization and boosting productivity on October 20, 2021, at the opening day of the Global Symposium on Salt-Affected Soils.

The three-day virtual conference was co-organized by FAO and attended by more than 5,000 experts. The map is a joint project that involves 118 countries and hundreds of data-crunchers. It allows experts to identify where sustainable soil management practices should be adopted to prevent salinization and sodification and to manage salt-affected soils sustainably. The map is also key in informing policy makers when dealing with climate change adaptation and irrigation projects.

The world map estimates that there are more than 833 million hectares of salt-affected soils around the globe, equivalent to 8.7% of the planet. Most of them are in naturally arid or semi-arid environments in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The map also shows that 20 to 50 percent of irrigated soils in all continents are too salty, meaning over 1.5 billion people worldwide face significant challenges in growing food due to soil degradation.

For more details, read the news article on the FAO website.

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