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The Solution to Climate Change Right Under Our Feet
New report spotlights how healthy soil takes CO2 out of the atmosphere to where it helps build climate resiliency
An excess of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the Earth’s atmosphere is warming the
planet and increasing the severity and intensity of extreme weather events.
Because the atmosphere can only absorb so much of this greenhouse gas,
excess CO2 is dissolving into our oceans, causing them to acidify. Ocean
acidification not only harms marine life, it puts food webs at risk.
While this is a grim state of affairs, there is hope, and it is right under our feet in the soil. In fact, soil is the largest “sink”—or area of storage—where additional
carbon would actually be extremely beneficial. Currently our cultivated soils
globally have lost 50-70 percent of their original carbon content.2 This means
we have a tremendous opportunity to put carbon back into the soil where it
creates positive feedback loops, making healthy soil a systemic solution to
multiple problems including food and water security. Not only is rebuilding
soil carbon entirely possible, unlike drastic climate mitigation measures like
geoengineering, it is without risk.
originally posted by: FyreByrd
True nobody would get rich with this method of sequestration and some poorcompany's could loose profits but it would be helpful without the unknowable dangers of geo-engineering.
Not a hope in hell. Most of the "green" stuff is verging on a gigantic scam. Carbon trading, with its huge government subsidies, is just what finance and industry wanted.
It's not going to do a damn thing about climate change, but it'll make a lot of money for a lot of people and postpone the moment of reckoning.
I am not against renewable energy, but to spoil all the decent countryside in the UK with wind farms is driving me mad. It's absolutely unnecessary, and it takes 2500 square kilometres to produce a gigawatt - that's an awful lot of countryside.
There is one way we could save ourselves and that is through the massive burial of charcoal. It would mean farmers turning all their agricultural waste - which contains carbon that the plants have spent the summer sequestering - into non-biodegradable charcoal, and burying it in the soil. Then you can start shifting really hefty quantities of carbon out of the system and pull the CO2 down quite fast.
Would it make enough of a difference?
Yes. The biosphere pumps out 550 gigatonnes of carbon yearly; we put in only 30 gigatonnes.
Ninety-nine per cent of the carbon that is fixed by plants is released back into the atmosphere within a year or so by consumers like bacteria, nematodes and worms.
What we can do is cheat those consumers by getting farmers to burn their crop waste at very low oxygen levels to turn it into charcoal, which the farmer then ploughs into the field. A little CO2 is released but the bulk of it gets converted to carbon. You get a few per cent of biofuel as a by-product of the combustion process, which the farmer can sell.
This scheme would need no subsidy: the farmer would make a profit. This is the one thing we can do that will make a difference, but I bet they won't do it.