Working Group 3

Total value of saline ecosystems and landscapes


This WG will discuss upscaling of sustainable management practices for salt-affected soils, to promote the transfer of research findings from the lab to the field and improve water use and crop productivity. The work will focus on: i) highlighting the economic, social and environmental value of salt-affected lands and saline landscapes instead of cost-focused approaches; ii) valorising saline ecosystems from irrigated lands and drylands to raise awareness, inspire new business models and improve communication; and iii) addressing upscaling the market for saline production and consumption by informing about new crops, salt-induced changes in nutritional characteristics, and potential market chains.



  • Task 3.1

    Prepare a database of best practices in saline agriculture to support the sustainable use of salt-affected lands while considering the food system trade-offs;

  • Task 3.2

    Propose new business models for various salinity levels to foster upscaling of saline agriculture and other sustainable uses of salt-affected lands;

  • Task 3.3

    Discuss valuation techniques applicable to saline landscapes;

  • Task 3.4

    Collect studies showcasing economic potential of salt-affected lands;

  • Task 3.5

    Build on the knowledge in WG1, 2, 4, 5 and 6.


  • D3.1

    A database of best practices in saline agriculture (M24-36);

  • D3.2

    A report with new business models for various salinity scales (M36-48);

  • D3.3

    A methodology workshop on valuation techniques for salt-affected lands (M12-24);

  • D3.4

    A paper with meta-analysis showcasing economic potential of salt-affected land (M18- 30);

  • D3.5

    Synthesis of WG1 and WG2 output needed to implement WG3 activities (M18-36).



COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) is a funding agency for research and innovation networks. Our Actions help connect research initiatives across Europe and enable scientists to grow their ideas by sharing them with their peers. This boosts their research, career and innovation.

COST Action CA22144

Salinisation, the accumulation of water-soluble salts in the soil, is one of the major causes of soil degradation affecting 833 million hectares of land and 1.5 billion inhabitants worldwide. However, these lands can be used by applying saline agriculture, involving soil, water and salt-tolerant crop management methods.

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