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There is increasing attention to the importance of biodiversity for food security and nutrition. This attention focuses on above-ground biodiversity such as plants and animals. However, less attention is being paid to the biodiversity beneath our feet, soil biodiversity. This is problematic, because soil biodiversity is the basis of those processes that provide us with food, water, a healthy environment, a stable climate, medicine, and much more. It can provide solutions to many of our most pressing global challenges. Soil biodiversity and the ecosystem services it provides will therefore be critical to the success of the recently declared UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030) and the upcoming Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.

This report is created by more than 300 scientists from around the world under the auspices of the FAO’s Global Soil Partnership and its Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils, the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Global Soil Biodiversity Initiative, and the European Commission. It presents concisely the state of knowledge on soil biodiversity, the threats to it, and the solutions that soil biodiversity can provide to problems in different fields. The report can be used for raising awareness of the importance of soil biodiversity and highlighting its role in finding solutions to today’s global threats.

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