Archive for April, 2012

Allan Savory: the Only Viable (Human) Plan for Saving the Planet

Posted in Healthy Food & Agriculture on April 1, 2012 by Dave

Allan Savory It has recently dawned on me that Planet Earth is in big trouble and needs saving. And much sooner than I ever dreamed before. And in ways I had not realized before. People have often asked me what I think about Global Warming and I have not known how to answer.  Now I do.  Yes, Global Warming is real, but the biggest problem is not burning of fossil fuels.  The biggest problem is man made desertification caused by tillage (think corn, soybeans and wheat in the US), range burning and improper grazing management.  As for man saving the planet, yes, I have read Revelation and I have always been aware that God himself will intervene on Planet Earth at some point. But we do not know when this will occur and Scripture also teaches us in James 1:27 that “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” A simple question has recently occurred to me. How can we look after widows and orphans (and thus have true religion) if we destroy our farmland and rangeland and cannot feed ourselves? The answer: We cannot. By the way, if you don’t think we’re in trouble, then read this article LINK HERE. I first became aware of Allan Savory by reading Joel Salatin’s books and articles. Joel mentions him favorably and follows his methods (see Joel’s Mob Stocking article HERE) but I’ve never seen Joel sound the alarm bells about climate change and saving the planet as Allan does. I would highly recommend that anyone who cares about eating and about feeding your children and grandchildren should read Allan’s 20 page report found HERE. Then read Allan’s entire website link HERE. Well worth it. The good news is that there IS a solution. And Allan Savory has it. And others are catching on. Google Ian Mitchell-Innes, Joel Salatin, Greg Judy, Chad Peterson, Abe Collins, John Fullerton and the terms “mob stocking” and “mob grazing” and “brown revolution” for more information.  To summarize briefly, I have learned the following in the past year … (1) all the deserts of the world are man made including the Sahara due to overgrazing and tillage.  Joel Salatin writes of Homer (you know the Iliad and Odyssey guy?) reporting that he crossed N. Africa and never left the shade of a tree.    (2) desertification is increasing every year (think Texas this past year) due to continued overgrazing, tillage and range burning (3) the solution is really a simple concept – graze large herbivores (cattle, bison, etc) in large herds (mobs) on perennial grasses.  This will restore the entire ecosystem and cause it to rain more, water will be held on site, dry rivers and streams will run again, etc.  Counterintuitive but true.  Many people think cattle are destructive.  Yes, if they are mismanaged – i.e. the way most ranchers manage them today.  But they are just the opposite of destructive if managed according the the principles of Holistic Planned Grazing (HPG) (Google the terms above).  This system is already working.  There are 12 million hectares worldwide being managed this way already.  Yes, desertification CAN be reversed.  Mr. Savory says we have the money and the know how, we just need the collective will power (5) Prairie grasses with large herbivore herds grazing them in large mobs actually sequester far more carbon than trees ever could.  Joel points out that if all farms managed cattle like his farm (Joel uses HPG), we would easily sequester all the carbon ever produced from the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.  He’s right.  (6) Thanks to Weston Price, we know that grass fed meat and milk and cheese are some of the best foods you can eat.  In fact, several remote cultures reported on by Price never brush their teeth, never see a dentist or a doctor, yet have perfect health and perfect teeth because they eat natural, unprocessed foods like these.  So the food products from this “Brown Revolution” will help solve the health care crisis as well as the Global Warming Crisis. (7) Political discussions about which presidential candidate will win seem irrelevant to me now that I understand the true magnitude of the global crisis facing us.  What difference does it make if a Democrat or Republican is in the White House if we cannot feed ourselves in 60 years?

Some might ask “Dave, aren’t we just supposed to be making disciples? Not worrying about saving the planet? God’s going to burn it up anyway, right?” Well it’s true we are to make disciples. I think personal evangelism is important. I go door knocking for my local church. But I think our evangelism is always more effective if we also try to meet people’s physical needs too. Often, meeting their physical needs gives us the opportunity to meet their spiritual needs. My good friend Jan Milton (who accompanied me to Guyana last year) illustrates this principle beautifully with his Operation Renewed Hope global ministry. He provides medical, dental and optical clinics, then holds evangelistic meetings and the response is tremendous. Jan is now trying to add agriculture to the mix of services offered in his ministry to people to meet physical needs. As for God burning the earth up, yes, He’s going to … but don’t forget about the Millenium … that 1000 year period when we will rule and reign with Christ on the earth. That will be a period of “Eden Restored” but until that time, we have been given dominion (Genesis 1:28) and I’m not aware of that mandate being revoked.

Farming Soil Could Run Out in 60 Years

Posted in Healthy Food & Agriculture on April 1, 2012 by Dave

… in Britain … maybe 100 years in Europe according to a recent Telegraph story …

British farming soil could run out within 60 years, leading to a catastrophic food crisis and drastically higher prices for consumers, scientists warn. Fertile soil is being lost faster than it can be replenished and will eventually lead to the “topsoil bank” becoming empty, an Australian conference heard. Chronic soil mismanagement and over farming causing erosion, climate change and increasing populations were to blame for the dramatic global decline in suitable farming soil, scientists said. An estimated 75 billion tonnes of soil is lost annually with more than 80 per cent of the world’s farming land “moderately or severely eroded”, the Carbon Farming conference heard. A University of Sydney study, presented to the conference, found soil is being lost in China 57 times faster than it can be replaced through natural processes. In Europe that figure is 17 times, in America 10 times while five times as much soil is being lost in Australia.