From the ground up: soil management in a changing climate
29th June 2020 3:00pm
Start Date: 29th June 2020 3:00pm
Tropical Agriculture Association (TAA) East Anglia’s 7th Annual Seminar will be held on 29th June from 3-4.30pm.
It will be hosted with Fauna & Flora International (FFI), in collaboration with the Cambridge Global Food Security (GFS) initiative and CambPlantsHub. FFI and GFS are members of TAA.
We plan to have presentations by three speakers, who will talk on ways in which soil management and cropping practices can influence climate change. They will then join a panel discussion. There will be ample time for questions and panel discussion.
Our three speakers will cover an exciting mix of topics.
- David Dent, TAA member and independent consultant, recently specialising in soil management of the steppes of central Asia. He proposes to give a provocative talk about carbon loss/ sequestration by soils. “An investable proposal: a plan for regenerative agriculture and carbon sequestration across the Central Asian steppes”.Soil is the biggest brake on global heating; it holds more carbon than the atmosphere and all standing vegetation put together. But farmers have been burning off soil organic matter for 12,000 years, running up a carbon debt of 133 billion tonnes The best thing they could do for the planet is to put it back again – and they can feed us all at the same time! The best places to start are in the black earths of the Steppes and Prairies, bread-baskets of the world.
- Ed Turner: Cambridge University Department of Zoology. He will discuss his work to improve biodiversity in oil palm plantations, mainly in Indonesia, under the title: “Good crop, bad crop? Oil palm cultivation and management options for more sustainable palm oil.” The spread of oil palm plantations has come at a significant cost to tropical biodiversity, but oil palm is also the most productive vegetable oil crop worldwide and can develop significant complexity over its lifespan. This talk will investigate ways that plantations can be managed to enhance biodiversity and support ecosystem functions that promote yield within established plantations.”
- Mariska Bartlett. Consultant at Fauna & Flora International. She will talk on ‘”Livestock and regenerative agricultural practices – taking a Holistic Management approach”. Agriculture focused on regenerative practices is by definition an agriculture focused on improving soil health through increased soil carbon and life in the soil. Holistic Management does the rather unthinkable: using domestic ruminants (livestock – cattle, goat, sheep) as a restorative force.
We plan to record the event and to make the video available on-line.