Daily Archives: May 14, 2017

Climate Change, Soils and Humans as a Keystone Species in the Global Ecosystem | EV & N – 246 – CCTV



Past CCRA-CCTV Webcasts

Building soil to capture and “fix” carbon from the atmosphere through plant growth is the most helpful strategy humans can undertake collectively on a large scale to address climate change.  Carbon capture and storage (CCS) processes that have functioned to build carbon-rich soils for 450,000,000 years since life on Earth expanded from the seas to invade the land.  Humans have emerged as a dominant species on Earth by learning how to channel the energy captured by the green leaf and stored its fossilized remains.

If as a species we do not learn to work in conjunction with green plants to restore atmospheric carbon to the soil in massive amounts we will not survive our own cleverness in learning how to release stored solar energy.   There may be non-solar forms of energy that we learn how to tap, but there will never be a post-agricultural civilization because humans need food captured from sunlight.  Plants in turn need roots grounded in soil.  No matter how we try, we don’t grow plants.  If we begin now, we can learn to grow soil, and soil will grow plants.

We need collectively to change our behavior to stop killing and degrading our life-giving soils.  As a keystone species we could change our behavior to assist build soils that capture carbon rather than release it.  If human intelligence proves to be adaptive in evolutionary terms, it will only be because we will have discovered this truth in time to turn away from our soil degrading and depleting practices of treating soil like dirt and toward our restorative role as stewards of the soil.


Regreening the planet – (VPRO documentary – 2012) – John Liu

vpro documentary

Published on May 14, 2017

Regreening the planet looks at the profit that comes from the recovery of ecosystems in Spain, Egypt and India. Restoring ecosystems does not only generate ecological profit but also economic. In Regreening the desert, the makers of VPRO Backlight showed that the greening of deserts is very well possible. They followed the American-Chinese cameraman and ecologist John D. Liu.

He filmed how an inhospitable dry mountain area as large as the Netherlands was transformed into a lush green oasis. The greening caused not only ecological recovery but also economic growth of the region. Since then, John D. Liu has traveled the world to inspire people in other countries to follow this example.

Dutch ecologist Willem Ferwerda was inspired by Liu and decided to work together with him. This cooperation has grown into a new organization, Commonland, a foundation with a clear mission: to restore the ecosystems on a large scale worldwide. The point of departure is that restoring landscapes not only yields ecological profits but also money, work and hope for the people living there.

We can see that this works in Egypt: in 1977 Dr. Ibrahim Abouleish SEKEM, experimented to green the desert at Cairo. In 2014, SEKEM has grown to be the leading supplier of ecological products in Egypt and far beyond. Dr. Abouleish has built not only a flourishing business in the desert but a complete community with schools and their own medical and cultural facilities. A better proof that greening and social innovation go hand in hand is almost impossible to find.

That all areas can grow alive, even if they are completely eroded by erosion, also appears from the special story of Indian Jadav “Molai” Payeng. When he was 17, he worked for a replanting project in Assam province. After the project was completed and the other laborers had disappeared, he decided to continue propagating wood by hand. Now, Molai forest is 300 acres and populated by elephants, Bengal tigers, deer, rhino and numerous birds. Payeng is also called The Forest Man in India because he has been able to create a jungle singlehandedly.

That is something that Spain might well use. Large areas in Spain are dry and abandoned due to misused agricultural subsidies, unintentional water and land use and large-scale erosion. The population is turning its back on the countryside and moves to the cities, but there is also unemployment there. In Ayoo de Vidriales, a graying village in the middle of Spain, agricultural engineer Pedro Alonso Fernandez has begun to recover land. He wants to show that the Spanish silted and eroded soils are in fact Green Gold.

Originally broadcasted by VPRO in 2012.
© Backlight 2012



Rising conservative voices call for climate change action

PBS NewsHour

Published on May 14, 2017

Climate change is one of many issues seen as dividing Democrats and Republicans. A dominant wing of the GOP has denied climate change exists, as some Democrats have tried to reduce air pollution and push for alternative forms of energy. But meanwhile, some Republicans are also pushing for climate action. NewsHour Weekend Special Correspondent Stephanie Sy reports.

Somalia’s 4 year drought has killed a quarter of a million people

CGTN Africa

Published on May 11, 2015

Somalia remains one of the largest and most complex emergencies, according to the country’s UN relief coordinator. Years since the drought that ravaged the horn of Africa, many people are still suffering. CCTV’s Mohammed Hirmoge reports

Somali Drought Puts Millions of Lives at Risk

CGTN Africa

Published on Sep 9, 2014

Droughts in various regions in Southern Somalia could precipitate into famine conditions; twice the expected rains failed affecting seasonal agriculture and livestock. An ongoing conflict in some regions further worsened the already dire situation. Mohamed Hirmoge report

Jennifer Turner discusses China’s flood season

CGTN America

Published on Apr 3, 2017

For more on China’s flood season, CGTN’s Elaine Reyes spoke with Jennifer Turner, director of the China Environment Forum at the Woodrow Wilson Center.

Scientists monitoring the Greenland Ice Sheet (PROMICE 2017)

Climate State

Published on May 11, 2017

In 2007, Denmark launched the Programme for Monitoring of the Greenland Ice Sheet (PROMICE) to assess changes in the mass balance of the ice sheet. This video presented by Geocenter Denmark gives us a 2017 update. For more visit http://undergroundchannel.dk and http://promice.org

The continuous monitoring of the ice sheet makes PROMICE a unique and important tool in our understanding of climate change. Glaciologist Dirk van As explains the challenges the PROMICE team encounters when maintaining such a large scale project.

Release via https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqTXR…

Music by Stephen Lu http://www.chibola.com

350.org – Climate Change Is About Power


Published on Dec 15, 2015

(96) Peoples Climate March: We resist. We build. We rise.


Published on Apr 6, 2017

Find out how to get involved and sign up for updates here: 350.org/PCM

Global Divestment Mobilisation 2017 – you were amazing!


Published on May 14, 2017

Over the last 10 days the Global Divestment Mobilisation saw thousands of us all across the world take powerful action to help stop the climate crisis. Take a minute to watch this beautiful video and feel the people power we have on our side. #fossilfree