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No ordinary matter: Conserving, restoring and enhancing Africa's soils. A Montpellier Panel report, December 2014


In sub-Saharan Africa, an estimated 65 per cent of soils are degraded, and unable to nourish the crops the chronically food insecure continent requires. Poverty, climate change, population pressures and inadequate farming techniques are leading to a continuous decline in the health of African soils, whilst the economic loss is estimated at USD 68 billion per year. Conversely, better land management practices could deliver up to USD 1.4 trillion globally in increased crop production – 35 times the losses.
This report from the Montpellier Panel argues that if left unaddressed, the cycle of poor land management will result in higher barriers to food security, agricultural development for smallholder farmers and wider economic growth for Africa.
The report is a comprehensive analysis of land management in Africa today, and answers a series of critical questions:
Are donors and governments neglecting soil health in Africa?
What are the key approaches to restoring Africa’s soils?
How can improved land management tackle climate change in Africa?

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