There is a powerful means of addressing the challenges of carbon capture and climate change — promoting photosynthesis! This means good old fashion farming and gardening — covering the earth with a vast range of trees, flora and crops.
Amongst other benefits, a rich diversity of plant species and agricultural practice that is poly-cultural and perennial in orientation, enriches the soil, promotes healthy microbiology, sequesters carbon, fosters more effective hydration of the soils, greater climate change resilience and more abundant, nutrient-rich food production and security.
Permaculture is a holistic design system that arranges human habitat and agriculture in a way that regenerates and revitalises the environment. It incorporates practices and processes that mimic the natural world. Permaculture utilises the synergy of relationships that abound in the diversity of species and environmental elements. As a consequence, greater abundance in production is realised as its practice brings together a variety of appropriate eco-technologies, both ancient and modern.
The Rodale Institute has recently published a White Paper titled "Regenerative Organic Agriculture and Climate Change: A Down-to-Earth Solution to Global Warming" (650kb PDF). It is important reading and very encouraging!
Regenerative organic agriculture for soil-carbon sequestration is tried and true: Humans have long farmed in that fashion, and there is nothing experimental about it. What is new is the scientific verification of regenerative agricultural practices. Excess carbon in the atmosphere is surely toxic to life, but we are, after all, carbon-based life forms, and returning stable carbon to the soil is a tonic that can support ecological abundance.
Taken together, the wealth of scientific support for regenerative agriculture has demonstrated that these practices can comfortably feed the growing human population while repairing our damaged ecosystem:
"If management of all current cropland shifted to reflect the regenerative model as practiced at the research sites included in the white paper, we could potentially sequester more than 40% of annual emissions.
"If all global pasture was managed using a regenerative model, an additional 71% could be sequestered.
"Even if modest assumptions about soil’s carbon sequestration potential are made, regenerative agriculture can easily keep annual emissions to within a desirable range."
Today there are farmers and agricultural scientists in every corner of the world committed to and excited about the results of regenerative organic agriculture‘s potential in mitigating both climate issues and food insecurity, and the specific research needs have been well documented. Now is the time to harness cutting-edge technological understanding, human ingenuity and the rich history of farmers working in tandem with the wisdom of natural ecosystems.
Now is the time to arrive at a stable climate by way of healing our land and ourselves — through regenerative organic agriculture. — Rodale Institute
You can also check out the video interview below with Tom Newmark (Founder of The Carbon Underground). It is a very insightful interview revealing what needs to be done to regenerate the earth in a way that secures the future of all living species on the planet, including the human race. Take a note of the additional sources of information that Tom quotes during the interview.
I hope you will be as encouraged as I was.
- Tony Lovell on Soil Carbon: Putting Carbon Back Where It Belongs – In the Earth (TEDx video)
- Soil Carbon – Can it Save Agriculture’s Bacon?
- A ‘New’ Discovery – Soluble Nitrogen Destroys Soil Carbon
- It’s Time to Colonise Earth!
- The Biology of Global Warming
- A Call to Large Scale Earth Healing and Lessons from the Loess Plateau (Video)
- Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration
- Soil – Our Financial Institution