A fruitful third year as base for upcoming EJP SOIL adventures 2023

Everyone in EJP SOIL would like to wish you a happy new year! A year with more peace, less damage to our planet and for each of you a year of good health, achievements and sharing with your loved ones.

The EJP SOIL is full of surprises and challenges. The programme has now entered the harvest phase: results, recognition and the development of the EJP SOIL community. The third year of the EJP SOIL programme has been very fruitful. There are now at total of 36 ongoing research projects (plus 10 new projects, soon to be announced) working on achieving the expected impacts of EJP SOIL. For more information about each project, read descriptions on the EJP SOIL website.

Very diverse activities have taken place in the third year of the EJP SOIL programme: short scientific visits, two PhD schools and a training session, start of a LUCAS – National soil Monitoring system intercomparison, policy workshops, webinars, newsletters – just to name a few.

The Palermo General Meeting and Annual Science Days were a big success and a true highlight of the third year. Great to witness the EJP SOIL community develop and interact. A very welcomed event after the long COVID period of restrictions.

Soils are very present in the EC policy developments with the publication in December of the carbon removal certification framework and in the preparation of a Soil Health Law proposal. EJP SOIL actively participated to the EUSO stakeholders workshop in October, with presentations and contributions to the discussions and involved in coordinating several EUSO working groups. Several of our programme outputs have been used by the EC in the working documents for their soil expert groups meetings in preparation of the Soil Heath Law, which is proof of the impact EJP SOIL is aiming for.

Next steps are to continue engaging in providing scientific support to policy making, with targeted workshops, policy briefs and topic-specific discussions. To be able to provide the same level of support to national policies development, engagement and knowledge sharing with the EJP SOIL, National Hubs are very instrumental and considered to be used by the Soil Mission as well.

EJP SOIL contributes to the development of an integrated community of research groups working on agricultural soil management. The participation of EJP SOIL research teams in successful applications to Soil Mission/Horizon Europe calls and to the NordForsk call demonstrates the strength and sustainability of our network. We strongly encourage all, to whom this applies, to make profit of the EJP SOIL network in applying to future calls. Several topics in the next Soil Mission call are very relevant to our scope of work.

EJP SOIL is proposing three scientific sessions at EGU 2023. Many EJP SOIL colleagues will be presenting outputs of the EJP SOIL research.

The EJP SOIL community is active, and together we make an impact. We are looking forward to continuing the work in 2023 and the fourth year of EJP SOIL. 

We wish you a happy new year! Stay tuned for the next adventures of the EJP SOIL!

Claire Chenu, EJP SOIL Coordinator (INRAE), and

Saskia Visser, EJP SOIL Deputy coordinator (WR)