Obama administration announces new steps to maintain and create healthy soils

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), in collaboration with Federal agencies and private-sector stakeholders, announced new steps to promote the long-term health and sustainable use of one of America’s most important natural resources: its soil. The new actions being announced today aim to advance scientific understanding of soils to better care for them and their ability to support food security, climate mitigation, ecosystem services, and public health. These efforts focus on three key areas: 1) promoting interdisciplinary research and education, 2) advancing computational tools and modeling, and 3) expanding sustainable agricultural practices. The National Science and Technology Council’s Soil Science Interagency Working Group (SSIWG) also released a Framework for a Federal Strategic Plan for Soil Science, which aims to identify needs, gaps, and opportunities in soil science; develop opportunities for expanding soil conservation practices and enhancing soil carbon sequestration; and coordinate Federal research priorities for the future.