Agriculture: The Surprising Leading Contributor to Pollution

Did you know that the modern agricultural system is responsible for putting more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than the actual burning of fossil fuels? Understanding this reveals an obvious answer to pressing global problems.

There are only three places for carbon to go: land, air, and water. Our agricultural practices have removed massive amounts of valuable carbon from land, transferring it into air and water. Carbon management is critically important regardless of one’s views of climate change.

By paying greater attention to carbon management, we have the opportunity to make a dramatic difference in this area, which is having major negative consequences to our agriculture, our air, and our oceans, lakes, streams and rivers.

One important factor that some experts believe is KEY for reversing environmental devastation like desertification, which is when land turns to desert, is to return much of our land to grasslands and build a network of herbivore economics.

There is no better way to improve the conditions for animals, solve the carbon problem, bring more revenue to farmers, and improve our health by purchasing nutritious foods from properly pastured animals – vs the horrible CAFO model based on the monocultures of corn and soy fed to the animals in questionable conditions in which they are proactively fed antibiotics to make them fat and keep them alive in such atrocious conditions.

Returning to more sustainable organic farming methods is also necessary in order to support the regeneration of soils which, ultimately, dictates how nutritious the food grown in it will be.

The featured video of Vandana Shiva, recorded at a Food Otherwise conference in the Netherlands earlier this year, does a magnificent job of putting modern agriculture into proper perspective.

In order to make food production sustainable, we have to join forces to keep genetically engineered monoculture and pesticide resistant or pesticide producing crops at bay. This is surely not an easy task in light of the financial (and hence political) clout wielded by the chemical technology industry. And yet we must embrace that challenge.

The easiest thing that anyone can do is to simply stop buying processed foods.

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