Carbon Farming Love at COP21

Paris COP21 Climate Conference talks carbon farming

People with a pulse agree: Carbon Farming and Regenerative Farming a key to reversing climate change. Highlights from COP21 in Paris

We’re a big fan of soil, of anyone building soil at any scale, and of the advocates and champions of soil out there. Even though the UN’s designated Year of the Soil is officially “over”, we do backflips for regenerative farming principles as a huge opportunity to fight climate change on every scale.

Carbon Farming Love at COP21

Which is why we were thrilled to see reports this week from the COP21 Climate Conference in Paris, that key stakeholders including France, Germany, Australia, Denmark, and more were calling for Carbon Farming as a key to reversing climate change (notably France’s 4/1000 Initiative at the center of the conversation).

The time has come to to reshape agriculture but it must be of the right type: regenerative, smallholder centered, focused on food loss and waste, adaptation, soils management, oceans and livestock.
— David Nabarro, the UN Secretary General’s special representative for food security and nutrition

If you’re not familiar with the concept of carbon farming, which includes regenerative ag practices kin to permaculture:

Carbon Farming involves implementing practices that are known to improve the rate at which CO2 is removed from the atmosphere and converted to plant material and/or soil organic matter. (Source: Marin Carbon Project)

Videos: Carbon Farming, Soil Health, and Climate Change

Here’s a great video, narrated by Michael Pollan, that breaks down how soil is a key to tackling climate change:

And this, from COP21:

And a slew of great articles in recent days, summarizing the focus on regenerative and carbon farming from COP21:

Global Agricultural Transition Under Way to Boost Resilience to Climate Change and Reduce Emissions (Press Release from COP21) 

Summary of France’s 4/1000 Initiative 

Carbon Farming Gets A Nod At Paris Climate Conference (NPR, December 8) 

How World Leaders Can Solve Global Warming With Regenerative Farming (EcoWatch, December 11) 

Weaving a Tapestry of Hope for Ocean and Earth (Huffington Post, December 10)

Surprise — You’re a Carbon Farmer Too!

Don’t think for a moment that carbon farming is only for the farmers. Backyard enthusiasts and gardeners alike can practice the regenerative farming practices that are the foundation of carbon farming as well. We’re all about taking action here at 8th & Bee. Here’s a few ideas to get you started, that you can do in your yard:

  • Make compost and keep adding it as topsoil layer to your garden
  • Start a worm bin and add wormgold to your soil 
  • Learn about and practice no-till or “chop-and-drop” techniques
  • Lay fallen leaves from your trees or “winter pruning” scraps from the garden down as cover material on your garden. It’ll decompose in place
  • Plant a diverse, multi-level garden
  • Plant cover crops and nitrogen fixers
  • Plant trees and other deep-rooted plants as windbreaks to reduce soil erosion
  • Capture water in place! Prevent soil erosion from water run off through swales, catchment, and contours in your garden or acreage

We’ll break some of these ideas down in more detail in the days to come. In the meantime, let us know in the comments below if you’re doing anything interesting in your garden or farm to build soil.

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