Deputy Speaker Claydon, this Sunday is World Soil Day — and I knew you'd be interested in that! Soil degradation is widespread in Australia, and this poses untenable risks to food security, the environment, and our health and wellbeing.
Over the past 200 years, we have done terrible damage to our soils. But the good news is that innovative farmers, graziers and market gardeners across Australia have turned their creativity and knowledge to regenerating Australia's degraded soils. Organisations like the independent, non-profit Soils for Life have been sharing their stories of restoration and regeneration for more than a decade, and now soil has rightly found prominence as a matter of national significance, through the National Soil Strategy and Office of the National Soils Advocate in PM&C.
I recently hosted a discussion with Soils for Life with leading producers, farmers and soil specialists. As we deliver on this strategy to repair degraded soils, success will rely on researchers, policymakers and producers partnering to support stewards of this land to make our soils healthy and naturally productive again.
Their advice to me was clear. They need stable, long-term, ongoing support for locally led soil health initiatives run through local hubs. I look forward to continuing to work with Soils for Life and producers in my electorate and encourage other members to do the same.