This is The ChangeUnderground for the 29th of March 2021.
I’m your host, Jon Moore
Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!
Indeed folks, 250th episode. I must say it’s been a joy, a lifeline at times and an education. So many people are doing so many things to feed the world and make it a better place.
Over the last few episodes and to be fair, from the beginning of this podcast, there’s been a hint of darkness lurking within the words. Things are crook, global warming of the climate continues. We get colder snaps than we’ve seen for generations but they are the weather not the climate.
I do remain a hopeful person though. Given the situation, I’ve come to the conclusion that we can only do this by acting as one species to assist and save as many other species as we can. Clearly we are in a mass extinction event, even if we look only to vegetable seed varieties and our loss of biodiversity in the last seventy years. Apply that across the entire biosphere and the dangers become obvious.
The pandemic is a microcosm of what we need to do in the climate area. As rich countries race to vaccinate themselves first and the developing world is relegated to the back of the queue, the pointlessness of this selfishness becomes manifest. Now I have great sympathy for those who have lost loved ones. I understand the need to vaccinate everyone all at once but the way it’s rolling out means the poorer parts of the world will still be affected by the virus. While it’s still running around in the human population, evolution guarantees new variants capable, eventually, of overcoming the effectiveness of the current vaccines.
Decarbonising the developed world whilst moving carbon spewing industries to the developing world will ensure we will not meet the planetary goals.
So what’s to be done?
A whole world solution, one size fits all, will not work. Disseminating the knowledge of what works and allowing locals to implement this knowledge, on the ground, seems to me to be the answer.
My journey along this line of thought has been two pronged. Firstly I continue to publish this podcast. Spreading the word on systems that work, my own attempts to do so on the land over which I am custodian and sharing links to the best advice I can find, continues to drive me.
The second string in my bow has been the courses I put out into the wilds of the interwebs. The hope being to train a cadre of no-dig gardeners to change the world one garden bed at a time. This is happening and gives me great pleasure to see people changing their lives and that of the biosphere for the better. The “lots of little steps adding up to great change” approach.
But the missing part has been a greater connection to the developing world. To that end I started googling. Nothing popped out as a way forward. Then I remembered a podcast: Climate Change Unfolding produced by Sam Ward out of Uganda. [Link in the show notes.] A few emails later and I was in touch with Jenny from the Bubugo Conservation Trust.
This is an organisation doing the work that needs to be done. An holistic approach with a demonstration farm as part of their work but I’ll come back to that. A reading room to promote literacy levels and educational standards, a program to restore the riverbank of the Nile, work on alternative, non tree based, fuels, a tree nursery to reestablish tree cover, support of local schools, the albino population and children with disabilities as well as the demonstration farm. There’s a fair bit going on that fits nicely with the “decarbonise the air, recarbonise the soil” tag line and ethos of this podcast.
An educated population is better able to assess local issues and implement the necessary changes. Reforestation and the demonstration farm are twin visions that intertwine and make sense out of both alternative fuel sources and riverbank restoration.
From the Bubugo Conservation Trust Website, which is currently undergoing some restoration work itself.
Agriculture is the primary source of livelihood for the Bubugo community. However, increasing population pressure and land fragmentation is resulting in increased problems with yield and soils- a nationwide problem. [In Uganda] Jenny and Charlie are developing a demonstration farm on their land, showcasing sustainable land management ideas which can be taken up easily by local farmers. We hope to further expand this work to include educational lectures in the reading room, and to work with other local NGOs to support the dissemination of sustainable agricultural land management practices for improved livelihoods and soil quality.
So, where is all this leading? It’s time to put my money where my mouth is, as they say. For every copy of the ChangeUnderground Academy No-Dig Gardening course on the World Organic News website that sells I’ll transfer $10 to the Bubugo Conservation Trust. Further, for every coffee someone buys me on the “Buy Me a Coffee” link on that same website, I’ll transfer 10% of that to the trust. The aim is to raise $2,500 a year. These monies will be applied to the demonstration farm and its outreach work.
There are links to both of these ways to support the Trust and to do the work we need to do to avoid these annual once in a hundred year climatic events we are all experiencing.
And in the process we decarbonise the air and recarbonise the soil.
Thank you all for listening and I’ll be back next week with the first of the next 250 episodes.
The ChangeUnderground Academy No-Dig Gardening Course:
Climate Change Unfolding
Bubugo Conservation Trust