This is a script for a presentation I have to do. Any critiques on flow, content organization and grammar are welcome!
In a technology driven world we are always looking for the most convenient and easy solution. Farmers around the world think the same way, using pesticides, tractors and tills. But in doing so they have found that their soil becomes dusty and dry. The top soil, the most important layer, blows away in the wind. This is not only affecting our food supply, but it is also affecting the climate on a major scale. But how can we stop this? There is in fact an easy solution and it is called regenerative farming.
There are two main types of regenerative farming; no-till farming and regenerative grazing. No-till farming focuses on not tilling the soil. Because when you have your tractors come through making rows for your plants, you kill a lot of important organisms like worms. The worms will dig through the soil looking for decomposing matter to eat, this helps with two things, fertilizing the plants and aerating the soil. The best part is, it’s free. Another big part of no-till is to grow many things together. So instead of having large swaths of land that you grow wheat on, year after year, instead grow wheat, peas and corn in the same field.
Regenerative grazing is the most revolutionary of the two. The common belief regarding cows is that they produce a lot of methane and take up a lot of land, contributing quite a bit to climate change. While this may be true, cows aren’t the problem, it’s the farmer. The idea here is to rotate your grazing animals around the grazing land. So you section off the land, so the animals can only eat grass in one area. They will eat the grass all the way down, do their business and trample on it. Then you move them onto the next section of land where they do the same thing. When the grazing animals get back to that same section of land, the grass will have grown to be lush and tall again. This process prevents overgrazing and desertification. It also provides more nutrients and biomass for the land, making it very healthy. In this way, desertification can be reversed in just a couple of years which is simply astounding.
The one thing these two practices have in common are creating as many relationships with the land as possible. From the plants and cows, all the way down to the soil and insects. In this way we can produce quality food while caring for our planet.
In the 1950’s, Allan Savory was a young biologist in Africa. He was helping set aside land for national parks. They removed the peoples and hunters who occupied the land. In the following years the land began to deteriorate. The only reason for this, Savory thought, was that the land wasn’t able to sustain the large number of animals. So he proposed to the government that they needed to reduce their numbers. The government agreed, so in the following year over 40,000 elephants were shot. It was too late when Savory realized what a mistake he had made. The land never bounced back like they thought. So Savory was determined to find solutions. After years of research he found that to have healthy land, you have to mimic nature. In this way, Savory educated farmers and brought back grasslands. As you can see in these photos, in just a couple of years, these deteriorating grasslands have been brought back to what they are supposed to be, lush, green and alive with animals.
But how does regenerative farming benefit the farmers? While it may be labor intensive in the beginning, it’s incredibly easy to adopt. All you need is some patience and knowledge of how your land works. Once you get your land established, (especially with grasslands) it becomes self sufficient. Costs of feed for grazing animals goes down because the grasslands provide an abundant amount of food for them. Maintenance costs are almost eliminated because you don’t have tilling equipment to constantly check on and fix. It not only increases crop yield but it also produces quality food. Regenerative farming is also beneficial to the planet as a whole. It reduces carbon emissions which are safely stored in the soil and it also helps the land soak up rainwater. This is why we need to go back down to the bare basics and mimic what nature has been doing all along.