The Forum for the sustainable soil management was organized by Politecnico di Milano, Legambiente and ISPRA, in cooperation with the technical jobs network, as part of the awareness campaign for technicians featured in Soil4Life project. It was the first opportunity to discuss the voluntary guidelines for soil protection, an address document aimed at the professional figures which can act specifically to reduce the soil consumption and encourage the sustainable use of soil through the adoption of suitable practices in carrying out their activities.
The objectives of the VGSSM are: to present generally accepted, practically proven and scientifically based principles to promote SSM and to provide guidance to all stakeholders on how to translate these principles into practice, be it for farming, pastoralism, forestry or more general natural resources management.
These Voluntary Guidelines for Sustainable Soil Management (VGSSM) were developed through an inclusive process within the framework of the Global Soil Partnership (GSP).
They aim to be a reference providing general technical and policy recommendations on sustainable soil management (SSM) for a wide range of committed stakeholders. The guidelines were adopted by the 4th GSP Plenary Assembly (Rome, 25 May 2016), approved by the 25th session of the FAO Committee on Agriculture (Rome, 28 September 2016) and finally endorsed by the 155th session of the FAO Council (Rome, 5 December 2016).
By providing an easily accessible and readily understandable reference to a wide range of
stakeholders, the potential target audience of the VGSSM includes: government officials, policy
makers, farmers, pastoralists, forest and land managers, extension services and agricultural
advisors, development partners, civil society, private sector and, academia, etc.