John-Paul Maxfield of Colorado wants to be the Tesla of sustainable agriculture, but to get there he is making a living selling compost to marijuana farmers.
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Disturbing news came out of a meeting in Oxford, England, last week. Over 200 researchers, policy makers, businesspeople, and members of civil society met to reexamine Earth’s deadline for human sustainability. They found it likely to be sooner than we previously thought. To review recent history a bit: at the 21st Conference of the Parties […]
The good news is that NASA has just released research on how temperature and rainfall patterns worldwide may change because of the concentrations of greenhouse gas growing in Earth’s atmosphere. The space scientists have based their conclusions on historical measurements and robust scenarios of increasing carbon dioxide produced from 21 climate models: specifically, General Circulation […]
One answer to human cravings for living at the shore has always been “filling the swamps.” In many areas of the world, shoreline wetlands of mangroves thrive. These plants live in a world of high salinity, tidal inundation and storms, and oxygen depletion—conditions fatal to most other vegetable species. Because people perceive swampy ecosystems as […]
Masdar City will soon be home to an ‘innovative’ new energy + agriculture pilot project that’ll seek to efficiently produce both food and biofuel feedstock, according to recent reports. The project will aim to transform desert land into a biologically productive state capable of supplying fish, shrimp, and oil-rich plant crops, to the operators of the system […]
Or do you? It’s time to pay attention to climate change now—as if it wasn’t back in 1800, when our current problems started. We all need to acknowledge that stunning industrial achievements can carry with them enormous unforeseen risks and challenges. Americans should take particular note, because on the whole we are wa-a-a-y behind on this. […]
By Brad Walker – Rivers Director, with illustrations and other contributions from Joe Mohr Part 4: Solutions In the three (1, 2, 3) previous segments of this series we have discussed the problems created on and within our rivers when special interests work together to manipulate the political system. In order to justify the destruction of […]
Who’s the savage in this forest? The indigene, or the “forest industry”? Thanks for posting this great photoon from The Pieces Fit on your Facebook page, Moms Clean Air Force!
This is a modified version of an essay originally submitted to crossroadsforsociety.org by Ken Whitehead on Jan 12 2013 One of the major challenges we currently face is how to ensure that there are sufficient resources available to feed all seven billion people who currently call this planet home. As things currently stand we produce […]
There are the good wildfires, and there are the bad. Unfortunately, the latter often overwhelm the beneficial ones. We’ll go on with stories from San Diego in a minute—it’s a long story of an actually short time—but here’s a word about the bright side first. Whoopi Goldberg had a thought that’s worth repeating: When you […]
(All figures are from the 2014 National Climate Assessment draft.) Later today (Tuesday, May 6), at 8 a.m. EDT, the National Climate Assessment and Development Advisory Committee of experts meets by conference call to approve the final version of the Third National Climate Assessment. The gist of their message, as Suzanne Goldenberg of The Guardian […]
BREAKING: Late this evening (8 pm EST, or tomorrow, March 31, at 9 am in Tokyo), something large and unpleasant will hit the fan about climate change. At a press conference in Yokohama, the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will release its Fifth Assessment Report on impacts of human activities on current and […]
America’s farmers are on the front lines of food and fuel production, and this 60 seconds video explains how they work to serve America more sustainably.
Premium hydroponic-grown, pesticide-free vegetables and herbs growing in the U.S. Gotham Greens facility (from eponline.com). Two entrepreneurs have recently made London the home of a very creative architectural reuse for food production—underground. Steven Dring, a former executive with Bunzl, an international provider of food-related products and services, and his friend and business partner Richard Ballard, […]
A new study has found that more than one-third of US states in the southern Great Plains could run out of groundwater within the next 30 years. Of course, running out of groundwater is never good, but this could be especially bad news for human populations and especially the US since this is a key […]
[Updated post] A team of archeologists investigating a savanna region bordering the Amazon Rain Forest has found more conclusive evidence that a low-impact farming technique has been used for over 1500 years; the ‘alternative’ agricultural practice, used by some native populations including the Maya, is mostly abandoned today. But it just may be […]
The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) recently published info on 10 ways Monsanto and Big Ag “try” to kill us and the planet. I wouldn’t presume they are “trying” to, just that they are more concerned with their profits than the effects they are having on people and the planet. Nonetheless, the list is great, I’m […]
Consequently, the UN report, ‘State of the World’s Land and Water Resources for Food and Agriculture’ calls for “sustainable intensification” of agricultural productivity on existing farmland. In a recent public statement at the FAO headquarters in Rome, Italy, FAO director-general Jacques Diouf said: “The consequences in terms of hunger and poverty are unacceptable. Remedial actions […]
Africa has never been a quiet continent, often the centre of attention for all the wrong reasons; wars, famine, drought, poverty, AIDS, to name just a few. Now, according to new research, climate change has the ability to cause Africa further harm by altering the water flows in many of the major river basins throughout […]
Chances are, despite your cherished addiction to th ebrown brew, the thought of a drastic reduction in the world’s coffee supply is not on your ‘deep concern radar’…but it is to Coffee retail giant Starbucks, whose concern for its global supply chain — sourced most in Central America — has always been of deep (and obvious) concern. Though predicted critical shortages are a decade or more off, already coffee farmers are finding increasing, negative climate impacts on their crop yields.
Vertical farming, as a concept, has been around for years, but it’s being put into practice and showing results in South Korea…
In a major victory for sustainable farmers everywhere, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals just issued a summary order upholding the previous decision in a long-running lawsuit over the impacts of genetically engineered (GE) “Roundup Ready” sugar beets. The ruling allows all previous court rulings in favor of farmers and environmental activists to remain in place, and it also mandates that the USDA now must extensively research all of the potential hazards of Monsanto’s modified plant.
The popularity of heirloom fruits and vegetables is much deserved; their flavor, variety, and beauty are clearly superior. But there are also other compelling reasons to preserve heirloom edibles, and they have serious implications for our future.
A group of leading scientists, economists and farmers, brought together under the leadership of John Reganold, a Washington State University soil scientists and lead author of a paper published in the journal Science, have called for a broad shift in federal policies to speed the development of farm practices that are economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable.
For those unfamiliar with the work of Wendell Berry (and for those familiar who may need a little refresher), he is David to the agribusiness Goliath. Berry works tirelessly to promote proper land stewardship, sustainability, and conservation and uses every opportunity to point out the drastic short-sightedness of our current path. A passage from his […]
This post has been entered in the Tck Tck Tck Rio+20 Blogger Prize. If you like it, take a second to “like” it on the Tck Tck Tck Facebook page When two German scientists figured out how to how to turn atmospheric nitrogen into ammonia, in what is now known as the Haber-Bosch process, human […]
The scientists used a general circulation model known as ModelE (developed at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York). The model calculates ocean-atmosphere coupling effects in addition to allowing varying aerosol inputs.
The initial input for the simulation was 5 teragrams (megatons) of black carbon particles injected into Earth’s upper troposphere. This is the estimated result of the surface detonation of 100 Hiroshima-size bombs (each equivalent to 15K tons of TNT).
From the last day or so, other than what we’ve covered, here are some top global warming and environmental politics stories: Monsanto and the USDA, Sittin’ in a Tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G OK, maybe not the best way to start this, but it is almost Valentine’s Day & that did get your attention. The USDA recently approved […]
Actually prior to Obama’s State of the Union, the Worldwatch Institute recently released its annual State of the World report: State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet. Here’s an intro via a blog post from the Worldwatch Institute’s Danielle Nierenberg over on our sister site, Eat Drink Better: It’s nearly a half-century […]
Agriculture, the indispensable basis of civilization, was originally encountered as time, language, number and art won out. As the materialization of alienation, agriculture is the triumph of estrangement and the definite divide between culture and nature and humans from each other. Agriculture is the birth of production, complete with its essential features and deformation of […]
I recently received this press release from Alex Rafalowicz of ClimateDebt. It is a simple announcement but the resources linked below are quite comprehensive and unique. Check out the 2-page documents linked below for a less-heard perspective on some key issues concerning climate change. Several civil society organizations focused on climate justice have compiled a […]
It seems we always take the most basic things for granted. With regards to adequate water, air, and soil (things we assume will always be there) we are gradually becoming more mindful of them, and their limits. But how many of us are worried about phosphorus (P) running out? Well, lately, more and more agricultural […]