SOILUZIOAK 2023 programme to provide a cross-sectional view on addressing soil protection from global to local


Experts, including the historian and ethnographer Albert Santana Ezquerra, the Director of the Spanish Geological and Mining Institute, Ana María Alonso Zarza, and the Scientific Director of the Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC), María José Sanz, will address the intangible value of soil, its relationship with society's challenges, and the importance of this resource given the climate emergency.

International speakers of the ilk of Natalia Rodríguez Eugenio (UN), Darío Piselli (European Environment Agency) and Margot de Cleen (Soil Plus) will give papers of high technical value on the contribution of the Sustainable Development Goals to soil protection, the impact of this resource on human health, and the basic aspects to advance in the European soil protection strategy.

Over two days, the SOILUZIOAK 2023 programme from a cross-sectional approach will bring together international experts and speakers to reflect on the challenges of soil protection from global to local, along with sharing European and regional best practices in that regard.

The morning sessions of the Basque Soil Protection Congress, which will be held at the Euskalduna Conference Centre in Bilbao on 10 and 11 October, will be dedicated to inspiring talks and papers of high technical values to thus bring to the table the need to protect this resource from all angles. 

Alberto Santana Ezkerra, historian and ethnographer, will be in charge of opening the event with his presentation 'The Intangible Value of Soil. Commitment to Guarantee its Protection'.  Natalia Rodríguez Eugenio, from the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, will focus on soil protection's contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals and the initiatives worldwide in that regard.

The second day will begin with the paper ‘Soil and Society's Challenges’ by Ana María Alonso Zarza, Director of the Spanish Geological and Mining Institute. Margot de Cleen, Senior Advisor Soil and Water Policy at the  Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, Rijkswaterstaat, Soil Plus, will then call on the delegates to look, think and act differently in order to advance towards the goals of the European Soil Protection Strategy.

The session will then continue with the talk by Dario Piselli, from the European Environment Agency. The expert in the environment, human health and well-being will argue that there is no human health without soil health.  In turn, María José Sanz, Scientific Director at  Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3), will position the value of soil in terms of the climate emergency. 

The programme will also include parallel sessions with debates and success stories, along with field trips to different projects with a common thread: soil and its sustainable management.

Registration for the Basque Soil Protection Congress, organised by the Basque Government through Ihobe, its environmental management agency, and Sprilur, its industrial land management company, is already open at the website.