Category: Biodiversity

Bhaskar Save, the Gandhi of Natural Farming

Sage of a minimalist farming system based on non-violence and all of nature’s biodiversity that produces in abundance with no chemical inputs. by Bharat Mansata Bhaskar Save, acclaimed ‘Gandhi of Natural Farming’, turned 92 on 27 January 2014, having inspired and mentored 3 generations of organic farmers. Masanobu Fukuoka, the legendary Japanese natural farmer, visited Save’s farm in 1996, and described it as “the best in the world”, ahead of […]

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Torpedoed

The results of a crowd-sourcing appeal prove that Discovery Channel engaged in fakery. The photo of a whale carcass which Discovery claims to have “found”. The suspicion that the Discovery Channel had abandoned its professed editorial standards was a powerful one. Its documentary claiming that the giant shark Carchardon megalodon still exists contained images which gave a strong impression of being faked; reports of incidents which don’t appear to have […]

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Jumping the Shark

Misleading claims by Discovery and other channels help to fuel wildlife massacres. There are, I think, two factors at work. The first is the desire to eliminate all risk from our lives, to move through a world that is safe, predictable and tame, with “no alarms and no surprises”. The second emerges paradoxically from the consequences of that desire. Having achieved, or almost achieved, the object of the great civilisational […]

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Trophic Cascades – On the Reintroduction of Wolves to Yellowstone National Park

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysa5OBhXz-Q When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe. — John Muir The eradication of wolves from Yellowstone National Park is a classic example of the Us and Them approach to wildlife management — where a simplistic, selfish and reductionist mindset sees nature as something to battle and compete against, rather than recognising that each wildlife entity has an […]

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Saving Our Animal Friends from Garbage and Goo!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QTLC-Wwbx9c ‘Protected’ patches of land are the only spaces some creatures have left to explore, find food, and make their homes — away from all the angry traffic. But mucky rubbish flows all over the place when people put pollution into streams and rivers. Plastic, metal, styrofoam and other manufactured materials clog up our waterways. So if you chuck stuff in the street you can expect to have to drink […]

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Wake up Before it is Too Late – Make Agriculture Truly Sustainable Now for Food Security in a Changing Climate

Click to download (5mb PDF) In late September of last year (2013) the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) put out the latest in their Trade and Environment Review series — titled Wake up Before it is Too Late: Make Agriculture Truly Sustainable Now for Food Security in a Changing Climate. Alert readers may already be aware of this document — as it was the springboard for a […]

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My Story, in Contribution to Our Story of Hope (Zimbabwe)

by Mugove Walter Nyika I grew up with my grandparents in a village 200 km south of the capital Harare, in Zimbabwe. From an early age I learned from my Grandfather, who passed on when I was six, to plant trees, to collect seeds and seedlings and put them into the earth. There were many sacred sites, where it was a taboo to cut down any tree. When I fell […]

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The Fruit Hunters (video)

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Narrated by David Suzuki, this two-part CBC series is a fascinating look into the world of fruit hunters — people who travel the globe seeking rare fruits, to preserve their diversity, or just to enjoy. The documentary also covers some interesting background history on some of the fruits we’ve come to take for granted, and you’ll meet interesting characters worldwide who have recognised the immense value of the diversity of […]

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Are We Using Invasive Species? (Kyrgyzstan)

The rabbit has been an invasive species all across the globe for over 2000 years, but is most commonly known as a pest in Australia. Image courtesy of J.J. Harrison (creative commons) In agriculture we often have to ask ourselves a very serious question. Are we planting invasive species? This question deals with some incredibly important scenarios. Over the past few centuries humans have unintentionally done some pretty serious damage […]

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Systems that Deprive Us of Wonder – a Conversation with George Monbiot

A conversation with George Monbiot and Steve Wheeler for Dark Mountain Steve Wheeler: Have you been surprised by the reactions you’ve got to the rewilding suggestions in Feral? George Monbiot: I’ve actually been surprised by how positive they are. I’ve had some really good reviews in the right-wing press, including newspapers I’ve been warring with for the past dozen years or more. I mean, obviously, I’ve got the sort of […]

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India’s Dangerous ‘Food Bubble’

Editor’s Note: As is often the case with the Earth Policy Institute (EPI), crucial solutions are largely missing from the article below. I personally believe India’s population is not the problem, but land mismanagement and the prioritising of extractive short-term economic policies. The author, Lester Brown, only touches on solutions (a surface-level mention of water harvesting), instead of bringing it, and a wholesale restoration of the hydrological cycle, to front […]

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Addressing the Causes of Land Degradation, Food/Nutritional Insecurity and Poverty: a New Approach to Agricultural Intensification in the Tropics and Subtropics

by Roger RB Leakey, Agroforestry and Novel Crops Unit, School of Marine and Tropical Biology, James Cook University, Cairns, Australia. Photo 1: A multifunctional agriculture landscape in Viet Nam with many income-generating tree-based production systems on hillsides surrounding an area of intensive food production on the most fertile soils. Abstract The shortage of new land for agriculture and the poverty of smallholder farmers in the tropics are serious constraints on […]

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