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Murie Audubon General Meeting & Program
October 11, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pmFree
Regenerative agriculture is a relatively new farming and grazing method with the potential to be as large a change as the green revolution was in the 1970’s. It was derived by examining the natural world and attempting to imitate and utilize what millions of years of evolution have achieved. It also recognizes that the soil is much more than just a substance that allows plants to grow, and that soil health is extremely important. We are just starting to realize how the soil functions, and how the millions of organism’s function in this ecosystem.
The 5 principles of soil health can be followed in a small garden as well as the largest farms and ranches with very good results. While the principles are the same everywhere, how they are applied can be different in every case. In other words, what works on a farm in the corn belt will be very different from what works in Wyoming, but the principles followed will be the same.
The goal of Regenerative Agriculture is to reduce inputs while increasing production by sequestering carbon. The best practitioners have eliminated government subsidies, fertilizer and pesticides, while increasing production. In part this means changing the mind set of traditional methods that tend to destroy microorganisms to practices that encourage soil health and carbon storage.
Combating global warming requires virtually eliminating fossil fuel use and sequestering carbon. If you listen to the media, sequestering carbon is very expensive and a not very proven technology. However, agriculture can sequester huge amounts of carbon. Each one percentage point improvement in the organic matter in the soil sequesters about 7,500 pounds of carbon per acre. Gabe Brown, a farmer in Bismarck, North Dakota, has increased his organic matter from about 1.5% to over 6% on 5,000 acres. If we did that on a million acres of farm land (less than 1% of the farm land in this country), we would be talking about sequestering billions of tons of carbon.
Rancher Stacey Scott and retired engineer Dan Cooper will present a program about the principles, practices and challenges of regenerative agriculture for the October program. Join us on Friday, October 11, 2019 at 7:00 p.m. at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse located at 4205 Fort Caspar Road to learn more about this alternative approach to farming and ranching.
By Stacey Scott