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    Pl​anet Before Profit

Regenerative Agriculture 

From both an economic and an environmental point of view many of our current methods of intensive farming are unsustainable.

Modern intensive farming is dependent on government subsidies, produces vast amounts of carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous-oxide and pollution. Worryingly, the millions of litres of pesticides, weed killers and concentrated nitrogen fossil fuel-based fertilisers which are poured onto the fields drain into our rivers, water supplies and oceans, killing biodiversity and causing human health problems which are only just being discovered.

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The UK government's own data indicates that over 75% of intensively farmed arable land is now "greatly depleted or devoid of microbial life, invertebrates and organic soil bacteria".

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Michigan State University’s Kellogg Biological Station show that over a 30 year period that long-term, no-till agriculture improves crop yields and has positive environmental impacts, creating higher quality soil and reducing the amounts of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere.  

“Initially, when the land is converted to no-till there’s no difference in yield, but over time the crop yields become higher and higher using no-till treatments compared to conventional agriculture." 

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"Global adoption of regenerative agriculture can sequester 100% of fossil fuel carbon emissions"

Why do Grizzly bears not chase mice?

Because a 500Kg bear burns more energy chasing a 30g mouse than it gains from eating it!

Balancing this fundamental energy in/out equation has shaped all species evolution and survival and the physics behind it applies equally to mankind and machinery and engines. We all understand the obscene waste and pollution involved when the super-rich fly across the Atlantic for a weekend shopping trip.

But do we think about the energy wasted when we drive to the shops for our weekly shopping?

An average fossil fuel family car consumes approx. 30 million joules of energy (1 litre of diesel contains 38 million joules) on an average shopping trip and if you bought enough food for 4 adults for 7 days that food would contain approx. 300,000 joules of energy.  So the average weekly shopping trip burns 100 times more energy than we get from eating the food!

In addition we must account for the huge carbon/energy footprint of modern industrial farming which in the developed world averages 400 gallons (1,500 litres) per adult per year. Then add air or road miles to transport the food, supermarkets energy consumption plus the energy and pollution from all the packaging and waste disposal. 

Totalling all these factors results in us burning approx. 1,000 to 1,500 times more energy to "hunt and gather" our food than we derive from eating it.

"Modern agriculture, supply chains and food distribution are unsustainable and must be radically overhauled and decarbonised."

Three vital actions are required urgently:

(1) Replace fossil fuels with green hydrogen to power all agricultural machinery and transport. This will eliminate the greatest amount of carbon/methane emissions and particulate pollution in the shortest timeframe.

(2) Replace traditional ploughing/fertiliser and chemical based farming with regenerative farming, vertical farming and "Agritecture" 

For example a 100 acres of vertical farming can produce more usable food than 1,000 acres of conventional farming, and it does this without using any toxic chemicals or pesticides.

(3) Global adoption of the Ecocide laws to protect the soil, ground water and fresh water supplies, biodiversity, natural capital and ecosystem services. This will force the Agri business giants, industrial scale farming and illegal slash and burn farmers/loggers to stop destroying biodiversity and ecosystems.