December 16, 2017
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Doing it in the Dirt Combats Desertification

by Brenda Platt

June 17th is World Day to Combat Desertification. In 1994, the United Nations declared June 17th the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought to promote public awareness of the issue. While the UN focuses on those countries experiencing serious drought or desertification, particularly in Africa, the United States is not immune.

“The dust storms and floods of the last few years have underscored the importance to control soil erosion. I need not emphasize the seriousness of the problem and the desirability of our taking effective action, as a Nation and in the several States, to conserve the soil as our basic asset. The Nation that destroys its soil destroys itself.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Letter to all State Governors on a Uniform Soil Conservation Law, Feb. 26, 1937

With almost 30% of U.S. cropland eroding above soil tolerance levels – meaning the long-term ability of the soil to sustain plant growth is in jeopardy! – these words ring as true today as in 1937. FDR was responding to the devastation wreaked by the Dust Bowl during the Great Depression. Today, much of the West remains under severe drought conditions. In the East, we’ve had our share of droughts but extreme storms seem to be reigning lately. Enhancing the ability of soil to retain water, slow stormwater run-off, and resist erosion is vital to life on this planet as we know it.

Fortunately we have one fairly simple solution: amending soil with compost. Compost-amended soil enhances soil properties, stems soil erosion, and protects against soil desertification. In addition, compost converts wasted food and resources into a valuable asset.

In honor of World Day to Combat Desertification, we are re-releasing our popular compost infographic as a series of 13×19” and 18×24” posters.

Composting Enhances Soil and Protects Watersheds Poster (18×23”)

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD ALL FULL 18×23 POSTERS

Published originally at Institute for Local Self-Reliance