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UNEP launches first project against land degradation in Serbia

A new UNEP project is the first to deal with soil degradation and its consequences at national level in the Republic of Serbia.


Titled ‘Enhanced Cross-sectoral Land Management through Land Use Pressure Reduction and Planning,’ the project’s main goal is to reduce pressure stemming from competing uses of soil. This will be done through preventing further soil degradation and by promoting soil remediation. The project will develop instruments for integrated soil use and management, reinforce capacity at institutional level and raise awareness on sustainable soil management.


The project was kicked-off during the event ‘Sustainable Soil Use’ scientific expert event held on 10 September in Novi Sad, Serbia.


There, Jan Dusik - Director of UNEP’s Regional Office for Europe - welcomed participants and emphasised the importance of networking and knowledge sharing among research institutions, as well as the involvement of the scientific sector in decision-making. “We count on everyone’s support in making a positive change in reversal of land degradation and sustainable use of this non-renewable resource,” he underlined.


Following a partnership established between UNEP and the Institute for Field and Vegetable Crops, the expert event celebrated the International Year of Soils, which aims at raising the awareness of the importance of soils for the Earth, their multiple roles and existing challenges for their sustainable use. Numerous representatives from soil research and management institutions as well as the private sector in Serbia took part in the unique event.


UNEP representatives also attended the official ceremony for the signing of the Soil Declaration - Serbia’s national contribution to the international IYS 2015 initiative.


The project is financed by the Global Environment Fund and will be carried out by UNEP in close cooperation with Serbia’s Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection.


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