A new campaign has seen celebrities join forces with a seven-year-old soil guru to encourage people to get dirty for nature and climate.
It may just be dirt to most of us but the soil under our feet is essential for all life on earth and holds the answer to tackling the combined nature and climate crises. But our soils are severely degraded, and we must restore them to good health to save nature and the planet.
That is the message behind the viral campaign by the Soil Association, which marked World Soil Day on December 5.
The sustainable food and farming charity asked everyone to roll up their sleeves and get dirty for nature by holding up a dirty hand, or both hands, taking a selfie photo or video and sharing it on their social media channels with the message,
‘I’m getting dirty for nature and climate this #WorldSoilDay because soil: stores carbon, protects us from droughts and floods, and helps us grow healthy food’.
The Soil Association teamed up with seven-year-old poet and conservationist, Aneeshwar Kunchala (pictured), who shot to fame as a finalist on Britain’s Got Talent, to raise awareness of the importance of soil health. He is also the charity’s Soil Ambassador for its new All About Soil educational resource pack available to all UK schools, which aims to teach children about soil health and what they can do to help save soil, and features videos of Aneeshwar demonstrating some of his fun soil experiments.
He explained: “There is no other planet like earth. It is an amazing creation, but we need to act now to help restore nature and improve our soils. Over the last 70 years, modern farming practices have resulted in nutrient loss, which threatens soil’s ability to support crops and uses chemicals which pollute the environment. We need to stop getting it wrong.
“We want everyone to understand how important soil is for our survival and for nature and to learn what we can all do to help save soil. That is why we want everyone to get their hands dirty, take a selfie photo or video and share it on their social media channels. And then ask your friends to do the same.”
Celebrities also pledged their support for World Soil Day and joined the campaign by posting their selfies and videos, including environmental businesswoman, Deborah Meaden, ethical chef and broadcaster, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, writer and restauranteur, Thomasina Miers, and presenter and healthy living advocate, Julia Bradbury