Back to top

Beta

Summary

Soils play an essential part in all of our lives.  They affect our health, our environment and our economy. 

Healthy soils can provide us with a wide range of benefits. Some of these benefits are obvious, like growing food, while many are less clear, like filtering water, reducing flood risk and regulating climate.

In contrast, damaged soils can harm crops, pollute water and increase the risk of flooding. 

We need to look after our soils to make sure they can provide us with these benefits, both now and in future.

Our soils

Our soils

Scotland has a wide variety of different soil types. This is because our soils are created from a wide variety of rocks and sediments by a range of processes controlled by the climate and where the soil sits in the landscape. As a result, Scotland’s soils tend to have more organic matter and be more acidic than soils in the rest of the UK.

State of Scotland's soils

State of Scotland's soils

Soils are an important natural resource. Healthy soils provide us with a wide range of essential benefits. Ensuring soils are in a good state so that they can deliver these benefits is vital for us, our economy and the wider environment.

Soil monitoring

Soil monitoring

Soils provide a wide range of benefits, many of which can be provided by the same soil at the same time. This means we need a range of soil data and information to help us make informed decisions. However, there are still issues around the existence of the right data from the right place with the right interpretation for the people who need to use the data to make decisions.

Get involved

Get involved

Help us to improve our understanding of soil. There are a number of portals and apps out there which allow you to find out more about the soil beneath your feet and others that ask you to collect information on your soils.