This is The ChangeUnderground for the 11th of April 2022.
I’m your host, Jon Moore
Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!
From RTE in Ireland, Quote:
World food prices jumped nearly 13% in March to a new record high as the war in Ukraine caused turmoil in markets for staple grains and edible oils, the UN food agency said today.
The Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) food price index, which tracks the most globally traded food commodities ,averaged 159.3 points last month from an upwardly revised 141.4 for February.
And from UN News, Quote:
“It is now more than two years that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to negatively impact our lives, our health and our economies,” said FAO chief QU Dongyu.
Explaining that the neediest “face greater exposure to the pandemic and are the most affected by rising food and fuel prices,” he pointed out that prices for staple foodstuffs such as wheat and vegetable oils have soared, “imposing extraordinary costs on global consumers, particularly the poorest”.
Conflict has driven up international prices for wheat, maize and vegetable oils, as war in the Black Sea region spread shocks through the markets trading in these staples.
The FAO Food Price Index averaged 159.3 points in March, up 12.6 per cent from February when it had already reached its highest level since its inception in 1990.
And from the 6th IPCC Assessment Report, Quote:
Global GHG emissions are projected to peak between 2020 and at the latest before 2025 in global modelled pathways that limit warming to 1.5°C (>50%) with no or limited overshoot and in those that limit warming to 2°C (>67%) and assume immediate action. [Table SPM footnote [#9],38 In both types of modelled pathways, rapid and deep GHG emissions reductions follow throughout 2030, 2040 and 2050 (high confidence). Without a strengthening of policies beyond those that are implemented by the end of 2020, GHG emissions are projected to rise beyond 2025, leading to a median global warming of 3.2 [2.2 to 3.5] °C by 2100 39, 40 (medium confidence).
Food prices are already rising, the Russo-Ukrainian conflict shows very little sign of ending, climate change is upon us and likely to get worse before there’s a chance of return to “normality”, whatever that actually is and with much of the developing world still unvaccinated, new CoVSARS2 variants will continue to arise.
Having just lived through a very mild dose of COVID 19 as a triple vaxxed citizen of a developed nation, I shudder to think what’s going on in places less fortunate than my home state.
For a glimpse into a totalitarian response, look at Shanghai over the past week. People sealed into their homes, running out of food and routine medications. We are living at the confluence of a series of major events. My generation has been lucky. Too young to be conscripted for Vietnam, too old for the major conflicts of Iraq and Afghanistan, and here in Australia we hadn’t had an economic recession, since the 1990s until the lockdown and we breezed out of that one in record time.
Yet the feeling of uneasiness settles upon me. There’s a crunch coming. I hope the world will navigate it with thoughtfulness and compassion. The evidence of history would point to a contrary outcome.
We can, though, take steps now. As I’ve been suggesting for a while now, we all need to start growing something. I’ve focussed upon vegetables, fruits and herbs. I think it’s possible for us all to do so. We are going to add rabbits to the list of species we care for in the next month. If you have access to grass, I think this would be a sensible way to diversify your food sources. Even if it means collecting green matter, grasses, weeds, leaves and so on and bringing them back home to feed rabbits, I think it’s worth the extra twenty minutes a day this would take for a buck and two breeding does. And they’ll be much quieter than a rooster or even a few hens but if you can fit them in, I’d be doing that too.
But it is the vegetables where I can help. I think you can tell from the quotes at the start of this episode, I don’t think things are going to sort themselves out any time soon. I’d love to be proven wrong but I’m not holding my breath. So my expertise is in vegetables. No-Dig vegetable growing to be precise and I’ve had a course up on the interwebs for a while. Given what I see as the seriousness of the current situation and the need for people to get growing, I’ve reduced the price of the course from $149 to $17 or about 89%. That’ll cover my hosting costs and a few software subscriptions to allow the site and the course to stay up and available.
So if you have been put off in the past, now is the time to jump in and learn. If you know anyone would be interested and the people we can get growing the better, please let them know. I’ll have a link in the show notes or you can go to the World Organic News.com website and click the course tab. Please spread the word, we need to get as much food happening as possible as close to the people eating it as we can. The best time to move from consumption to production was probably 50 years ago, the second best time is now.
Decarbonise the air, recarbonise the soil!
Thank you all for listening and I’ll be back next week.
No Dig Quick Start Course
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RTE: World food prices hit record high over Ukraine war
UN News: Ukraine war drives international food prices to ‘new all-time high’
IPCC Sixth Assessment Report, Summary for Policymakers Headline Statements