by Dave Haflich
In order to try and encourage people to view “Kiss the Ground”, the documentary shown at the church during Earth Care month, I watched it for the third time yesterday. It took me, using rewind and taking 7 pages of notes, almost 4 hours to watch its 80 minutes. And for the third time, it left me stunned, stimulated and hopeful that nature-based solutions (God) are at hand to help us solve our climate crisis. I will watch it again, and hope you do too.
After describing the industrial agricultural practices, stimulated by chemicals developed during and after WWII, that are in widespread use today and have led to desertification of over 25% of the earth’s surface, the documentary advocates for regenerative agricultural practices that promote soil health and reduce the return of soil carbon to the atmosphere. The benefits of healthy soils are surprisingly far reaching. Some are:
- The capacity of healthy soil to sequestrate carbon is so huge that it has the potential to easily reverse global warming in about 20 years.
- Food grown in biological active soil is more nutritious.
- Organically active soil is more absorbent, minimizing runoff and evaporation. Returning water to the atmosphere via the transpiration of growing plants can actually lead to increased rainfall, too.
- Eating meat becomes more viable! “Mob grazing” (short term grazing on crop residues and actively photosynthesizing cover crops) actually assists soils biological activity and minimizes the ecological disasters of feedlots and monocultures.
Among the things I am going to try and do to help the shift to regenerative farming practices:
- Ensure that all compostable waste gets to a composting facility, especially if it is community based.
- As much as possible, eat foods grown regeneratively, which includes locally grown products, organic vegetables (no industrial chemicals), grass-fed meat, “land hen” eggs, etc. This is especially hard for a cheapskate like me.
- Vote for candidates who honestly support Earth Care without influence by “status quo” interests.
- Try and visit the Markegard’s, local “regenerative ranchers” featured in the documentary.
- Minimize healthy soil destroying rototilling. Again, this is extremely difficult for me, loving my tractor with a 6’ tiller and two weedy acres. I’m trying only to do driveways.
These practices harness the God given regenerative power of the Earth itself and promote the biodiversity (there’s that concept again) that can restore a mankind degraded Earth to a paradise again. And its achievable now, worldwide.
Please watch the documentary. Its available on Netflix and participation options can be found at KISSTHEGROUNDMOVIE.COM