Ethny Childs
23 April 2021

SocEnv launches Soils and Stones report

The Society for the Environment (SocEnv) have launched their new report: 'Soils and Stones: Sustaining Our Future By Influencing Change in the UK and Beyond’. 

The report draws together the collective expertise of environmental professionals working with soils and stones, from across sectors as diverse as construction, forestry, engineering, and agricultural management. 

Read the report

The culmination of sixteen months of tireless work by a dedicated task group, made up predominantly of Chartered Environmentalists and facilitated by SocEnv, the report highlights both existing cross-sector good practice, as well as setting out key asks for ensuring this good practice is more widely adopted.

The IES supports the report not just for its quality, but because it represents all the ideals we stand behind: it’s evidence-based, it draws on multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary perspectives from professionals, and it deals with a natural system which is often underappreciated. The report is an excellent resource of high quality insights, which will be especially important for helping Chartered Environmentalists and wider professionals spread best practice underpinned by evidence.

A number of IES members have been involved in it's development, including IES Council Member Jonathan Atkinson. Jonathan reflects on why this report is so important: 

"Managing soils and landscapes is vital to our future. Promoting healthy soils and good management of landscapes has associated benefits for biodiversity, soil carbon capture, healthy meat production, better diets and nature-based solutions to so many of our landscape problems, including flood risk management. Soil management across all sectors is something that needs change in relevant policy and legislation to maximise reuse of soils and minimise the disposal of valued materials. Soils are so diverse and intricate and we need to stop degrading soils in our landscapes and washing it off into rivers to exacerbate flooding downstream and start using ecosystem approaches to maximising soil health with all the benefits that brings. We can revitalise and safeguard our soil, but it needs new approaches to cross sector policy and a cultural shift in our perceptions, as well as the right economic drivers. It is as much about rebooting society, food systems and sustainable development, as well as changes to the environment and agriculture."

Adam Donnan, IES CEO, said at the report launch:
"At the IES, we know how important soil systems are, which is why we released a policy report last year calling for a practice-based approach to managing land and soil.Our report was looking at the big issues facing land and soil, and we were very clear that the evidence shows how important good practice and environmental professionals will be to tackling those big issues. This report by the Society for the Environment is giving us another step on that important journey. It gives professionals those key links to find the guidance and resources they need to put best practice into action."

Interested in soil health? Register for our webinar exploring nature-based solutions for soil health.