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Upcoming events linked to the Initiative

Global Symposium on Soil Biodiversity- 2 to 4 February 2021 - Rome

As a precautionary health measure, the  symposium forecasted in June 2020 has been postponed to February 2021. It will be a science-policy meeting, held over three days, at the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) headquarters in Rome, Italy. It is jointly organized by the UN FAO and its Global Soil Partnership (GSP), the Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils (ITPS), together with the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (UNCBD) and the Global Soil Biodiversity Initiative (GSBI).

The main objective is to fill some critical knowledge gaps and promote discussion among policy makers, food producers, scientists, practitioners and other stakeholders on solutions to live in harmony with nature, and ultimately, achieve the SDGs through the conservation and sustainable use of soil biodiversity.

Symposium website

EIP-AGRI Seminar ‘'Healthy soils for Europe: sustainable management through knowledge and practice' - spring 2021 - Setubal, Portugal

The European Commission - Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development and the EIP-AGRI Service Point are organising this seminar in cooperation with the Portuguese General Directorate of Agriculture and Rural Development (DGADR). Anyone involved in keeping Europe’s soils healthy is invited to apply: farmers, foresters, researchers and others involved in Operational Group projects, Horizon 2020 research projects or other innovative projects, innovation support services, advisers working on solutions for enhancing soil health, EU regions and Member States. The debate will build upon past work by the EIP-AGRI network such as Focus Groups’ and workshops’ outcomes. The participants will be invited to discuss challenges and innovative good practices to halt soil degradation and improve soil health, while considering different soil functions and ecosystem services. The seminar will raise awareness on different EU initiatives to maintain and improve soil health. Moreover, its results will contribute to the research agenda of the Horizon Europe research and innovation framework programme by identifying knowledge gaps and proposing research and non-research actions for the Horizon Europe’s mission area Soil health and food.

Event webpage

8th World Congress on Conservation Agriculture (8WCCA) - POSTPONED June 21 - 24 2021, Bern (Switzerland)

The theme of the Congress is: Profitable and Sustainable Farming with Conservation Agriculture.

Conservation Agriculture (CA) is acknowledged to be a sustainable system of agricultural intensification which improves soil health and thus, will be a key element to ensure the production of food and other agricultural products, while providing additional ecosystem services, even under the threatening scenarios involving the consequences of climate change and larger world population. During the three days of the Congress, manifold topics will be discussed in depth in plenary sessions, panel discussions, parallel sessions and poster sessions, with the objective to promote a wider adoption of CA worldwide.

Congress website

Eurosoil 2020: Connecting people and soil - Postponed 23 - 27 august 2021 - Geneva, Switzerland

Eurosoil 2020 objective is to bring together leading research scientists working on soil related topics and stakeholders dealing with issues of public concern such as soil degradation and consequences of climatic changes. The important bridging role of soil practitioners to translate scientific knowledge into practice will be emphasized. 

The initiative 4 per 1000 will co-organize with Desertnet International a session titled "The “Agricultural fields - Opportunities and limits of carbon and water storage” featuring oral and poster presentations. 

Conference website:

Global Symposium on Salt-Affected Soils - 13-16 September 2021- Tashkent (Uzbekistan).

Given the current threat of salt-affected soils and their impact on food security, FAO, the Global Soil Partnership and its Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils (ITPS) together with the Republic of Uzbekistan, will be organizing the Global Symposium on Salt-Affected Soils.
More information here.

COP26 postponement to Nov 1st -12, 2021

The COP26 UN climate change conference set to take place in Glasgow in November 2020 has been postponed due to COVID-19 to November 1st - 12, 2021.

The 4p1000 STC meeting and the 4th Initiative Day will be held during the week of Nov. 8, 2021. Further information to come.

IUCN World Conservation Congress - POSTPONED - Marseille, France

In view of the sanitary situation associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, France and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) have decided to postpone the IUCN World Conservation Congress, which was to be held in January 2021 in Marseille. New dates for the event will be announced in due course. 

The IUCN World Conservation Congress is where the world comes together to set priorities and drive conservation and sustainable development action. The event has three main components: The Members’ Assembly, where IUCN Members vote on priority actions; the Forum, a global marketplace of conservation science and innovation; and the Exhibition, where exhibitors can showcase their work to Congress participants and the public.

Past events linked to the initiative

World Soil Day Celebration 2020 - Keep Soil Alive, Protect Soil Biodiversity - Dec. 5th, 2020

Held every year on 5 December since 2014, World Soil Day celebrates the importance of healthy soils for healthy food and a healthy life. In 2020, World Soil Day will celebrate soil biodiversity under the motto "Keep soils alive, protect soil biodiversity". This day is an opportunity to highlight the importance of soil biodiversity for sustaining life on Earth and providing an essential, nature-based solution to many of our current global challenges such as food security, climate change mitigation and adaptation and poverty reduction. This year, given the current situation, the celebration took place online in the presence of the FAO DG, the CBD Executive Secretary and renowned international guests. Furthermore, a global report entitled "State of Knowledge on Soil Biodiversity" was launched during the celebration. This assessment is the result of a collaborative effort of more than 300 scientists from around the world and is expected to become a springboard in the field of soil biodiversity. 

See the video made for the occasion by the 4p1000 communication team

Enhancing investment in soil health and carbon storage: Frontiers for linking finance and carbon accounting” - 10th September 2020 - ONLINE

This event is co-organized by CCAFS-CGIAR, The Nature Conservancy, 4 per 1000 Executive Secretariat, World Bank and the Meridian Institute.This webinar aimed to support investment promoting soil health and carbon storage by improving accounting for soil carbon sequestration. Emerging technologies and innovation are enabling lower cost accounting that could help investors better demonstrate performance toward climate and soil health impacts. Unlocking finance to better support soil health and carbon sequestration could be transformative for food systems and the climate. The event brought together 525 attendees from 69 countries! 
Read the SOC and Finance info note "How soil carbon accounting can improve to support investment- oriented actions promoting soil carbon storage
You can view the webinar recording here along with the slide-deck and other useful information regarding soil carbon accounting and finance:

CIRCASA 2nd annual meeting - Towards an International Research Consortium on soil carbon sequestration - March 4-6, 2020 - Wageningen

CIRCASA project aims to strengthen the coordination and synergies in European and global research on SOC sequestration in agricultural soils, leading to an improved understanding and scientific basis to target ambitious practices required to preserve and enhance SOC.

In the meeting, approximately 70 European and international experts working in the field of carbon sequestration, climate change mitigation and adaptation gathered. This 2nd annual meeting gave the opportunity to share and integrate efforts as the first and second day was dedicated to introduce and present different projects, initiatives, and networks in this field.

Watch the highlights of the meeting

Northeast Healthy Soil Network Symposium: Preparing the Northeast Agricultural Sector for an Uncertain Future - Feb 20-21, 2020 - Boston, USA

The Symposium “Agriculture and Climate in the Northeast: Soil and Ecosystem Health” was jointly organized by the Tufts Global Development and Environment Institute (GDAE) and by the Tufts Institute of the Environment (TIE) at TUFTS Unisersity and was sponsored by the French Ministry of Agriculture through the French Embassy in Washington D.C. and by the Consulate General of France in Boston. The Northeast Healthy Soil Network was gathering for this two-day symposium, to strengthen and aid the healthy soil movement in the Northeast region, by fostering communication and collaboration amongst all actors. 

The first day was an in-depth policy working group on regional strategies for strengthening and spreading healthy soil management strategies for members of the Northeast Healthy Soil Network with focus on two topics: farm viability and ecosystem service measurement. That first day gathered agricultural stakeholders already involved in soil health programming, business strategy or policy activity and encourage knowledge exchange between groups, that means mainly farmers, scientists, NGOS from the North-East States. It was the opportunity to gather agricultural stakeholders with a shared goal, to strengthen a regional framework of collaboration towards advancing healthy soil agriculture in their region. Central points about Network member’s projects, work and all stakeholders supporting the spread of healthy soil agriculture in the Northeast discussed will be formatted so they can be posted to the Soil First web platform, a new organizing space for the soil health movement.

The second day was introduced by the Consul General of France in Boston, Mr. Arnaud MENTREe, and 2 panels were presented during the morning:

  1. Panel 1: on climate emergency and potential for agriculture to be part of the solution – framing the issue at the global/international level with several presentations, among them one on the 4p1000 global network and the modeling of the transition of French Agriculture in a 4per1000 future, presented by Paul Luu.
  1. Panel 2, on the agricultural transition in the northeast: healthy soils for stronger viable farms and for climate adaptation and mitigation

In the afternoon, two Workshops were organized:

  1. Building the Heathy Soil Network in the Northeast US - Strengthening and Broadening the Northeast Healthy Soil Network: towards a regional coalition with report from Thursday Working Group.
  2. International Case Studies hosted by the 4per1000 initiative, moderated by Dr. Paul LUU - A conversation with French and American experts on the challenges and opportunities of agricultural transitions across the world with Dr. Laure BAMIERE (INRAE), Abad CHABBI (INRAE), Tim WISE (Small Planet Institute), Seth ITZKAN (soil4climate).

This Symposium was organized thanks to Mrs Josie WATSON and Prof. Anne-Marie CODUR from Tufts University. A big thank you to her two and all their team.

Watch and download presentations from the symposium website

Mission on Horizon Europe: Design and Impact by and for the Spanish Society - Dec 12, 2019 - Madrid

The event was organized by the Spanish Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities, and by the Ministry for Ecological Transition, within the framework of the COP25 held at IFEMA-Madrid. The general purpose of this event was to report on the next European Framework Program for Science and Technology, Horizon Europe, and discuss a novel part of it: the Missions. The day was proposed as an exercise to discuss and contribute to the design and content of the five areas defined in the Missions, among which is the Mission on “Soil health and Food”.

The event had a general introduction by the European Commission (Neville Reeve, Unit A4), followed by an institutional opening with debate by Pedro Duque, Minister of Science, Innovation and Universities, and Lina Gálvez, Vice President of the Commission of Industry, Research and Energy of the European Parliament (ITRE).

The debate in the Soil and Food Mission group was led by a representative of the European Commission (Annette Schneegans), a representative of the Steering Committee (Carmen Vela) and a representative of the Subgroup for Missions of the Parallel Program Committee (“Shadow ”) from Horizon Europe (Rocío Lansac). The meeting was attended by a large group of professionals related to the subject (ca. 30) of different participating entities (“Stakeholders”) and was moderated by José Manuel González of CDTI. Paloma MELGAREJO atended the event as 4p1000 Initiative representative.

The initial objective of the meeting was to identify interests regarding the Mission, such as areas of action, challenges and challenges; actions to develop; instruments in Horizon Europe; necessary innovations and mechanisms for synergies.

More information on this link.

"Soil and the SDGs: challenges and need for action", Brussels, November, 25, 2019

This conference aimed to provide an opportunity for policy makers, public institutions, researchers, industry and civil society to exchange knowledge and practices on the implementation in the EU of soil and land-related SDGs. Throughout the day, representatives from the EU institutions and Member States, the European Environmental Agency, the scientific community and the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) provided insights on the issue from different perspectives.

Jean-François Soussana (INRA, France), Vice-chair of the Scientific and Technical Committee of the Initiative 4p1000, presented the IPCC Special Report on Climate Change and Land as a co-author of the report. Paloma MELGAREJO, Scientific Officer of the 4p1000 Executive Secretary also attended the conference.

For more details about the conference, click here

Second Ministerial Conference of the Initiative for the Adaptation of African Agriculture (AAA) to climate change (Ben Guerir, Morocco, November 4-5, 2019)

Morocco convened the second ministerial conference AAA. The objective was to place the AAA Initiative back on the international agenda and request additional transition funds for “climate-smart” agriculture. As food insecurity on the continent is exacerbated by climate change, three countries, Somalia, Chad and Tunisia, announced on Tuesday (November 5th) that they will join the AAA Foundation – a coalition of 35 African countries (out of 54) to bring the interests of Africa and its agriculture to the climate negotiations.

Launched on the occasion of COP22, the Triple A initiative: "Adaptation of African Agriculture", aims to reduce the vulnerability of Africa and its agriculture to climate change while ensuring food security for all Africans. The initiative promotes and fosters the implementation of concrete projects to improve soil management, control of agricultural water, climate risk management and financing capacities and solutions. Since its inception, AAA considered the 4 per 1000 Initiative in Africa to be the "soil" component of their own Initiative. Contacts were made for the development of a memorandum between the two initiatives with regard to their common objectives: soil health and carbon sequestration on the African continent.

This high-level event with significant resources was organized in partnership with the Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (UM6P) and the OCP group. It brought together 28 foreign delegations, including 21 African ministers, representatives of African governments, international financial institutions such as the World Bank, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the African Bank of development (AfDB), the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (Agra), AFD (French Development Agency), GIZ (Germany), ENABEL (Belgium), (…), Ms. Josefa Sacko, AUC (African Union Commission) Commissioner in charge of rural economy and agriculture, the OCP (Cherifian Office for Phosphates) as well as many internationally renowned scientists.

The ministers present asked the countries of the North to respect their commitments of the Paris Agreement and pleaded for more funding from international donors while recalling that they needed technical assistance to set up fundable projects. They deplored the low disbursement of available funds.

A joint declaration by the ministers present was adopted at the end of the conference

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