World Soil Day 2020 | UPSC

World Soil Day 2020 | UPSC


World Soil Day 2020

      WHY IN NEWS:

Soil biodiversity reflects the variability among living organisms including micro-organisms not visible with the naked eye.

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 1 : 3 : Geography : Soil : UN Observances


For PRELIMS it is important to understand the significance of the theme , aim and the campaigns . Go through the background of this event too.

For MAINS this article will let you fetch enough pointers on soil biodiversity . Let us dive in !


World Soil Day 2020 will be different from other years as most interactions and discussions will be online due to the pandemic situation.


World Soil Day 2020 | UPSC


  • Soil is home to more than one-fourth of the Earth’s biodiversity.
  • World Soil Day on December 5 is one of the key dates on the UN calendar.

Global outreach activities globally try to bring governments, businesses, non-profit groups, scientists and the people on the same page.

  • This will let us understand the causes of soil erosion, soil pollution and how we can encourage soil conservation at the local level.
  • It is important for people to understand that our food security depends on healthy soil.


  • World Soil Day (WSD) is held annually on 5 December.

World Soil Day  is to focus attention on the importance of healthy soil and advocating for the sustainable management of soil resources.

World Soil Day 2020

THEME 2020

Keep soil alive, Protect soil biodiversity‘ is the theme for World Soil Day 2020.


  • Soil is a living resource and home to more than 25% the planet’s plant life

Quality and quantity of fruits, vegetables and food grains depend on the health of the soil

  • Soil organisms are constantly at work to sustain life on Earth
  • Soil helps fight climate change and global warming


By encouraging people around the world to engage in proactively improving soil health, the campaign also aims to fight soil biodiversity loss.

  • If we do not act soon, the fertility of soil will continue to be adversely affected at an alarming rate, threatening global food supplies and food safety.


  • Soil is a living resource, home to more than one quarter (25%) of our planet’s biodiversity.
  • Up to 90% of living organisms live or spent part of their lifecycle in soils, yet we know only 1% of this hidden universe.

World Soil Day 2020


  • Soil organisms work 365/24/7 in a coordinated effort to sustain life on Earth.

Soil biodiversity is an essential component of soil health. Healthy soils produces more nutritious and safer food. 95% of our food comes from soils. 

  • Soils organisms help soils store carbon and reduce GHG emissions.
  • Soil biodiversity contributes to the remediation of soil pollution by breaking down contaminants.
  • Soils are vast, vital pharmacies. Did you know that almost all of the antibiotics that we take to help us fight infections were made using soil micro-organisms?


  • In just 3 inches of soil, there are 13 quadrillion living organisms, weighing 100 million tonnes.
  • One hectare of soil contains the weight equivalent of two cows of bacteria.
  • There are more organisms in one gram of healthy soils than there are people on Earth.

An earthworm can digest its own weight in soil every 24 hours. 50% of the planet soil passes through the gut of earthworms each year. 

  • Soil organisms process 25,000 kg of organic matterin a surface area equivalent to a soccer field, which is the weight of 25 cars.


  • The objective of the WSDA is to encourage organizers of WSD events at all levels to facilitate challenging and outstanding celebrations around the globe.
  • The Award is sponsored by the Kingdom of Thailand.


  • An international day to celebrate Soil was recommended by the International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) in 2002.

Under the leadership of Thailand and within the framework of the Global Soil Partnership, FAO has supported establishment of WSD as a global awareness raising platform.

  • The FAO Conference unanimously endorsed World Soil Day  in June 2013 and requested its official adoption at the 68th UN General Assembly.
  • In December 2013 the UN General Assembly responded by designating 5 December 2014 as the first official World Soil Day.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 


  • Avoid single-use plastic
  • Choose eco-friendly, gardening, cleaning and personal care products
  • Dispose of hazardous waste like batteries responsibly
  • Compost your food waste
  • Adopt a plant-based diet
  • Let’s be the solution to stop soil pollution

Controlling soil pollution is critical as micro soil organisms working continuously for preserving our ecosystem perish and bad soil management affects life below the ground. 

     SOURCES:   IE  | World Soil Day 2020 | UPSC



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