We need regenerative farming, not geoengineering | Guardian Sustainable Business | The Guardian

A good, educational weekend read from The Guardian, making the case for “regnerative agriculture” over the more industrial (but apparently trendy) idea of “geongineering:”

Regenerative agriculture comprises an array of techniques that rebuild soil and, in the process, sequester carbon. Typically, it uses cover crops and perennials so that bare soil is never exposed, and grazes animals in ways that mimic animals in nature. It also offers ecological benefits far beyond carbon storage: it stops soil erosion, remineralises soil, protects the purity of groundwater and reduces damaging pesticide and fertiliser runoff.

But these methods are slow, expensive and impractical in feeding a growing population, right?

Wrong. While comprehensive statistics are hard to come by, yields from regenerative methods often exceed conventional yields (see here and here for scientific research, and here and here for anecdotal examples). Likewise, since these methods build soil, crowd out weeds and retain moisture, fertiliser and herbicide inputs can be reduced or eliminated entirely, resulting in higher profits for farmers. No-till methods can sequester as much as a ton of carbon per acre annually (2.5 tons/hectare). In the US alone, that could amount to nearly a quarter of current emissions.

The rest is here. Via Metafilter,

— rw
Permaculture & Indigenous Cultures
Maddy tells the story of discovering a forest garden high up in the Bhutanese Himalayas. The gardeners had never read a permaculture book or taken a course. Isn't it time permaculturists acknowledge where our knowledge has come from and show greater respect towards the indigenous people who have grown polycultural stacked food systems for millenia?

Permaculturists can spend rather a lot of time trying to explain what permaculture is and I am no different. In many ways it is rather a difficult word, a concept that is alien to our post-industrial western society. What we can forget to do is to attribute its origins. It was not really ‘invented’ by two Australians, Bill Mollison and David Holmgren, in a bolt of enlightenment. I believe it evolved, and was coded from, protracted study of perennial systems in agroforestry, tree cropping, Yeoman’s keylining and specifically Bill’s interaction with, and observation of, Aboriginal and other indigenous peoples and their practices wherever he travelled. These ways of observing and working with nature are the legacy and heritage of indigenous peoples all over the globe. They do not call it permaculture. They have often not heard the word, yet they understand nature’s patterns and use them to create polycultural, perennially based, energy efficient homes, gardens, farms, communities… These are found all over the world where remnants of those cultures have been allowed to survive. They deserve acknowledgement and respect. 

Read the whole article from Permaculture Magazine here.

Regenerative Agriculture helps improve soil health - Business - The Southwest Booster

Regenerative Agriculture helps improve soil health – Business – The Southwest Booster

By Trevor Lennox, Regional Forage Specialist, Saskatchewan Agriculture

‘Regenerative Agriculture’ is a new term that is starting to develop on some farms where producers are looking to improve the soil health on their operation. One component of soil health that has perhaps been neglected in the past is our understanding of how plants and soil microbes contribute to healthy soil.

Australian soil…

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Can Organic Agriculture Really Reverse Climate Change?

Can Organic Agriculture Really Reverse Climate Change?

By  “Coach” Mark Smallwood, Rodale Institute executive director,

Over the past 14 days, I have been on a walk–a walk that, I hope, will change the way that we look at climate change.

Each day I walk 10 miles on a journey from the Rodale Institute in Kutztown, Pennsylvania, to Washington, DC. Along the way, I have had the honor of meeting with farmers, local public officials, community members,…

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This is an amazing lecture by Mark Shepard about restructuring agriculture to be regenerative.

Regenerative Agriculture: Three Days with Darren Doherty

Recently, I had the privilege of attending a course in regenerative agriculture strategies with Darren Doherty. The course was structured by an interpretation of the Keyline Scale of Permanance with a couple of additional items:

  1. Climate
  2. Geography
  3. Water
  4. Access
  5. Forestry
  6. Buildings
  7. Fencing
  8. Soils
  9. PolyMarketing
  10. Energy
The Keyline framework was used to introduce a suite of regenerative strategies, including:

As well as all this, we saw a Keyline plough in action in a West Sussex pasture.

Why is all this so exciting? To my mind, an approach to agriculture that creates systems which build biological capacity in the form of soil, biomass, biodiversity and balanced natural and human managed ecosystems (agroecosystems) is the foundation of the possibility of our flourishing in the earth. And it is interesting and fun. What more exciting thing is there to do in the world than to join with those natural forces which would produce abundance with ecological health; to foster productive systems which teem with life and invite others to join in this creative work.

Darren presented people throughout the world who have been involved in this work with beautiful and profitable results. Profit, in these cases, is gained while ecological health is improved. There is still the issue of to whom those profits might rightfully accumulate or with whom they are most properly shared, but that will be a subject for another day. While I am working the most part of every day to build a barn to store some cereals, I have to hold back on exploring all that I am learning and thinking about. I have written a little bit about some of these people and strategies here before (holistic management, pasture cropping, keyline design, agroforestry). Some of the others strategies in the above list will be the subject of future posts. Some of Darren’s own ideas were also very provocative and will doubtless find their way here in the near future. For now, I have to get off to bed so that many years of work in gathering and multipying diverse cereals are not exposed to rain and sun and lost before we get a barn built.

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Could this be an answer to Big Food? - Fortune

Could this be an answer to Big Food? – Fortune

Based on organic farming principles, regenerative agriculture builds soil health for continued use while cutting down on greenhouse gases.

In 2013, Pam and Glenn Halloway gave up their day jobs in Washington D.C. and used their retirement funds to become co-owners of Tourmaline Farms in Deary, Idaho.

“Both of us come from farm backgrounds,” says Pam Halloway, 44, a former Army nurse and medical…

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Regenerative Agriculture Is the Answer to Save Your Health

Regenerative Agriculture Is the Answer to Save Your Health

By Dr. Mercola,

“A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself.” That’s a quote from Franklin D. Roosevelt, who clearly knew something most people, including farmers, have since forgotten.

The truth is, to feed the world, we must feed the soil. One of the best ways to prevent global disaster, save our health, and build a sustainable economy is through regenerative agriculture. This isn’t a…

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Sat atop the hills of southwest Devon overlooking the sea, Village Farm is a living example of regenerative agriculture.

A little over a year ago, Rebecca Hosking and business partner Tim Green - makers of the BBC2 documentary ’A Farm for The Future’ - became tenants of 175 acres of exhausted soils.

Turning a windswept, misused, coastal farm into an abundant landscape working with nature is their goal; their approach - holistic planned grazing.

Rebecca Hosking, film-maker, photographer, and agroecologist explains: “Holistic planned grazing is all about mimicking the natural migration of a wild herd across the landscape. This is the fastest way to build soil fertility on a large scale.”

2015 is the international year of soils. Farming with nature, Village Farm, is one of the many and inspiring examples of an agriculture working to build soils and providing good food for everyone without damage to the natural world and wildlife.

Narrated by Colin Tudge, biologist, writer, and founder, alongside his wife Ruth, of The Campaign for Real Farming.

Two months ago Orin and I were kind of freaking out that we weren’t going to fill our first permaculture design course. 3 weeks before the course we’re fully booked!!! So massively grateful for the 40 people taking this leap to learn with us and Penny Livingston about utilizing nature in intelligent and positive ways to live and provide for ourselves and others in this magical land of Bali that will be our learning ground. Stay tuned for our next courses to be announced soon! Thank you to everyone who helped spread the word 🙏 #kulkulfarm #permaculture #bali #pdc2015 #kulkulpdc #workshop #sustainability #greenlife #greenliving #growyourown #bamboo #farmlife #bali #regenerative #agriculture by kulkulfarm