Business case for soil
- Business & Industry ,
- Agriculture ,
- Food and drink ,
- Management ,
- Corporate governance
Businesses need to assess the risks that soil degradation could have on their operations and lobby for better protection, according to an academic.
In an article in scientific journal Nature, Jess Davies, lecturer in sustainability at Lancaster University, wrote that, although soil provides food, fibres and fuels and regulates water resources and climate, most businesses are unaware that their bottom lines depend on it.
More than half of agricultural soils are moderately or highly degraded, she noted, yet there is little legislation globally to prevent further damage. Firms should join researchers in lobbying for better soil policies and practices, she said.
They should also assess to what extent their operations and supply chains depend on soil, and metrics and tools should be integrated into reporting frameworks such as the Global Reporting Initiative.
Also, soils should be seen as an investment opportunity to mitigate risks associated with disruption to climate, water, energy and supply chains.
In Elliott-Smith v Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the claimant applied for judicial review of the legality of the defendants’ joint decision to create the UK Emissions Trading Scheme (UK ETS) as a substitute for UK participation in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS).
None of England’s water and sewerage companies achieved all environmental expectations for the period 2015 to 2020, the Environment Agency has revealed. These targets included the reduction of total pollution incidents by at least one-third compared with 2012, and for incident self-reporting to be at least 75%.
Global greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture are projected to increase by 4% over the next 10 years, despite the carbon intensity of production declining. That is according to a new report from the UN food agency and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which forecasts that 80% of the increase will come from livestock.
Half of consumers worldwide now consider the sustainability of food and drink itself, not just its packaging, when buying, a survey of 14,000 shoppers across 18 countries has discovered. This suggests that their understanding of sustainability is evolving to include wellbeing and nutrition, with sustainable packaging now considered standard.
Billions of people worldwide have been unable to access safe drinking water and sanitation in their homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a progress report from the World Health Organisation focusing on the UN’s sixth Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 6) – to “ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all by 2030”.
New jobs that help drive the UK towards net-zero emissions are set to offer salaries that are almost one-third higher than those in carbon-intensive industries, research suggests.
IEMA has today urged the UK government to focus on developing green skills and expertise across business, industry and civil society following the publication of an alarming report from the Climate Change Committee (CCC).