Nude dirt

Soil is rising.
Dirt is near top of the list of how we’ll reduce the effects of global warming.

Browning the Earth
From an earlier post, ‘Earth without dirt‘, it’s undeniable we will not green the earth until we fix brown.

It’s an exciting time to be a soil scientist because we might manage carbon when we learn dirt.

Dust belt of the 1930's, thumbnailIn the industrial north, conventional farms lose soil about 90 times faster than new soil is produced – 24 billion tons of soil blows or washes away each year. The costs and impacts are enormous.

Across the rest of the world, soil exploitation is the primary contributing factor to desertification.

What’s soil exploitation?

Harvesting crop residues for use as [biofuel in cars], fodder for livestock, fuel for cooking and heating, construction material, and other competing uses is a reality in sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, China, and other developing countries.

Therefore, it is not surprising that these are also the regions that have been plagued with severe problems of soil degradation.

After a time, soils do not respond, even to fertilizers.

With demand greater than supply, the first problem of all our problems, Philip Small warns, “The temptation is to mine the soil of its vitality…. “

Repairing soils and stopping deforestation,
can retain about
10 times more greenhouse gas
than produced from the burning of fossil fuels.

NYT reports: “In a withering evaluation of the World Bank’s record on African agriculture, the bank’s own internal watchdog concluded in October not only that the removal of subsidies had led to exorbitant fertilizer prices in African countries, but that the bank itself had often failed to recognize that improving Africa’s declining soil quality was essential to lifting food production.”

Mekes me a shirt.

: fix brown :

BTW, not a bad reminder to fix the Republican Party policy too.