Today the United Nations launch the International Year of Soils 2015 in New York. The formal launch event of the IYS will be organised during the 69th session of the UN General Assembly to coincide with the first official World Soil Day. Concurrent events will take place in Rome, Bangkok and elsewhere in the world. The IYS aims to be a platform for raising awareness of the importance of soils for food security and essential eco-system functions. The objectives of the IYS are:
- to create full awareness of civil society and decision makers about the fundamental roles of soils for human's life;
- to achieve full recognition of the prominent contributions of soils to food security, climate change adaptation and mitigation, essential ecosystem services, poverty alleviation and sustainable development;
- to promote effective policies and actions for the sustainable management and protection of soil resources;
- to sensitize decision-makers about the need for robust investment in sustainable soil management activities aiming at healthy soils for different land users and population groups;
- to catalyze initiatives in connection with the SDG process and Post-2015 agenda;
- to advocate rapid enhancement of capacities and systems for soil information collection and monitoring at all levels (global, regional and national).