Category: Deforestation

The Naturalists Who Are Terrified of Nature

A radical challenge to British conservation and its bizarre priorities. by George Monbiot Male capercaillie I’m writing this on the train home, after visiting two places in the north of England celebrated for their “wildness”. One of them is Ennerdale in the Lake District, now officially known as Wild Ennerdale, a valley in which the river has been allowed to move freely once more, and in which native trees are […]

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The Landed Mafia

It’s time we confronted the National Farmers’ Union and the millionaires it works for. by George Monbiot Is there any organisation as selfish, grasping and antisocial as the National Farmers’ Union? Is there any organisation, except the banks, which secures so much public money while offering so little in return? Here are some of the positions the NFU has taken over the past few months.

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Peak Water: What Happens When the Wells Go Dry?

by Lester R. Brown, Earth Policy Institute Peak oil has generated headlines in recent years, but the real threat to our future is peak water. There are substitutes for oil, but not for water. We can produce food without oil, but not without water. We drink on average four liters of water per day, in one form or another, but the food we eat each day requires 2,000 liters of […]

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Climate Change Adaptation Technologies – Permaculture Design Brings Results

Climate Change Adaptation technology: Stone Lines (The Sahel)(More videos below) It’s uber exciting to see simple design solutions bringing yields, low-carbon prosperity and health, to people who would otherwise suffer needlessly. Watch the excellent videos below to see how permaculture land management techniques are spreading across Africa and beyond, and giving communities an insurance against the growing threat of climate change — a problem these small-holder farmers had no role […]

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Farmed Fish Production Overtakes Beef

Janet Larsen and J. Matthew Roney, Earth Policy Institute The world quietly reached a milestone in the evolution of the human diet in 2011. For the first time in modern history, world farmed fish production topped beef production. The gap widened in 2012, with output from fish farming—also called aquaculture—reaching a record 66 million tons, compared with production of beef at 63 million tons. And 2013 may well be the […]

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Corporate Carve-Up

Under the pretext of preventing hunger, the rich nations are engineering a new scramble for Africa. by George Monbiot One of the stated purposes of the Conference of Berlin in 1884 was to save the people of Africa from the slave trade. To discharge this grave responsibility, the European powers discovered, to their undoubted distress, that they would have to extend their control and ownership of large parts of Africa. […]

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China’s Growing Hunger for Meat Shown by Move to Buy Smithfield, World’s Leading Pork Producer

by Janet Larsen, Earth Policy Institute Half the world’s pigs—more than 470 million of them—live in China, but even that may not be enough to satisfy the growing Chinese appetite for meat. While meat consumption in the United States has fallen more than 5 percent since peaking in 2007, Chinese meat consumption has leapt 18 percent, from 64 million to 78 million (metric) tons—twice as much as in the United […]

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Genetically Modified Crops and Hunger – Another Look at the Evidence

Genetically modified crops are hailed by their proponents as the basis for a “new green revolution”, and as the key solution to feeding the world in the face of population growth and the exhaustion of new sources of agricultural land. There is a massive volume of research and research literature around genetically modified crops, but how much of it is really of value in assessing this often heard hypothesis about […]

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Forests Keep Drylands Working (John D. Liu video)

John D. Liu of the EEMP, who has partnered with us in spreading the permaculture message, has created yet another excellent documentary — this time focussing on drylands, their past function and their present dysfunction through a broadscale loss of forest cover, and its impact on soil loss and on the hydrological cycle. In this video we travel vicariously with John as he takes us from Jordan to Africa to […]

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Healthy Planet and the Law of Ecocide – an Interview with Polly Higgins

The disappearing Amazon rainforest Photo: Cifor Marcin Gerwin: You propose introducing a new international law of ecocide as an amendment to the Rome Statute. Ecocide is defined as “an extensive damage to, destruction of or loss of ecosystem(s) of a given territory, whether by human agency or by other causes, to such an extent that peaceful enjoyment by the inhabitants of that territory has been or will be severely diminished.” […]

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Carbon-Sequestering Perennial Industrial Crops

This article is an excerpt from my forthcoming book Carbon Farming: A Global Toolkit for Stabilizing the Climate with Tree Crops and Regenerative Agriculture Practices, and is part of a series promoting my kickstarter campaign to raise funds with which to complete the book. Rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) is a common perennial industrial crop, though typically grown in problematic monocultures. Photo Wikimedia Commons. Industrial crops produce materials, chemicals, and energy. Some, […]

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Working With Principles for Creating More Efficient Cooking Stoves (Ethiopia)

In rural Africa it’s pretty hard to come by fuel sources which are a good alternative to wood. Gas is too expensive. Kerosene is also pretty expensive and quite a dirty fuel anyway. Wood also has the advantage that it burns quite slowly so that you can slow cook over a fire for several hours just feeding it occasionally. If you did this with gas it would cost a fortune. […]

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