In an effort to act upon current environmental issues, “Kiss the Ground” presents numerous hopeful solutions ranging from simple acts to larger carbon offset projects. As we have mentioned in articles before, carbon offset projects come in many forms but all have the same outcome in mind; to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
Healthy Soil = Healthy Planet
Healthy soil leads to healthy plants, and in turn these both lead to healthy bodies as we consume the plants as food. Nutrient rich soil holds plenty of microbes, allowing for a healthy diverse content makeup for the soil. These microbes include micro and macro organisms who play a key role in the process of decomposition; the breakdown of organic matter to produce a nutrient rich product that can then be absorbed into the soil for the plants to use.
Without support from a healthy soil presence, life on earth would suffer tremendously. As the amount of nutrient-dense soil decreases, the temperature of our climate will continue to rise and bring about poor environmental effects. While soil is a crucial contributor to maintaining a healthy planet, it will also be able to help tremendously in the resolution of the current climate problem.
The role of soil in bettering the health of our climate
Healthy soil means less erosion and desertification of our earth’s surface. Erosion is the process of when soil becomes dirt, and desertification is one step further to claim the land to be infertile and increasingly arid. One of the largest contributors to the erosion of our soil is current agricultural practices like the use of pesticides and tilling. Tilling is the process of pulling apart the soil with the intent of planting seeds, however this is detrimental in the long-run for the soil. Healthy soil has the ability to maintain a balance and pull CO2 out of the air.
During the film, there is a time lapse of the earth’s surface throughout the year shown through a view from space. The images displayed showed large amounts of purple and red colouring which symbolised CO2 emissions. The presence of this colouring was found in high amounts in the earlier spring months of the year. By Autumn, the colours had simmered to blue and green with no presence of any CO2 colouring. This was a major breakthrough to reiterate the destruction that tilling as a farming practice brought upon the earth.
At this point, we have to do more than just reduce our emissions to have an impact on the current climate crisis. We now have to lean on the idea of “drawdown”, a yearly reduction of carbon dioxide that has already been released. This is a crucial step to helping the crisis as there is a concept of a “legacy load” of carbon that will remain in our atmosphere for decades to come unless we attempt to draw it back down.
Helping our soil
Altering our current agricultural practices and moving towards “regenerative agricultural practices” is the best way we can help carbon drawdown and maintain healthy soil from turning into nutrient-lacking dirt. A core solution that was presented in the film was to desegregate the animal and crop farms, and instead bring the practices together to allow them to work and benefit each other. Despite the current association between cattle and CO2 production in current agricultural practices, if animals are allowed to roam and graze they can actually help capture carbon. Additionally, composting is highlighted in the film as a crucial part of the process to create and maintain healthy soil. Composting can also capture carbon by storing it in the soil instead of releasing it into the atmosphere.
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