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Reallybigbunny

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1050 on: January 25, 2018, 11:01:14 AM »
I hear you Bruce!

Daniel B.

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1051 on: January 25, 2018, 03:44:53 PM »
Bruce, can you expound on what you feel are the tipping points for our two major carbon sinks; namely terrestrial and oceanic?  Based on physics, carbon dioxide will continue to dissolve into the oceans as long as its atmospheric partial pressure continues to rise.  Based on biology, the terrestrial sink will continue to increase as long as plant life is not impeded.  With a growing population, food increases alone should continue this trend, even in the face of deforestation.  Although growing concerns have started to ease deforestation in some parts, which would increase the terrestrial sink capabilities.

gerontocrat

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1052 on: January 25, 2018, 04:44:36 PM »
Based on biology, the terrestrial sink will continue to increase as long as plant life is not impeded.  With a growing population, food increases alone should continue this trend, even in the face of deforestation.  Although growing concerns have started to ease deforestation in some parts, which would increase the terrestrial sink capabilities.
When an area of land that was rain-forest becomes a plantation of palm-oil trees or sugar plantation a rice field or whatever, or  an area of land that was temperate forest becomes wheat fields it's efficiency as a carbon sink is greatly reduced.
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Bruce Steele

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1053 on: January 25, 2018, 06:05:22 PM »
The ocean sinks are driven largely by biological processes. Yes Henry's law says CO2 will move from the atmosphere into the oceans as long as the partial pressure of the atmosphere is higher than the pCO2 of the ocean surface it contacts but when the pCO2 of the ocean is higher than the atmosphere the reaction is reversed. CO2 in seawater converts into carbonic acid which then converts into carbonate,
bi-carbonate and hydrogen. The carbonate is utilized by plants and animals that form calcium carbonate shells but as the pCO2 increases the reaction favors bi-carbonate formation over carbonate and increases the metabolic costs of shell formation. As the pCO2 increases further and reaches omega
( ph ~ 7.8 ) shell and dissolution of aragonite begins. As pH levels continue to fall some plants and animals are challenged with obtaining enough energy to make their shell quick enough to survive.
 The shells from pteropods and coccolithiphores are important contributors to the biological carbon sinks because they help ballast organic material from the surface to depth thereby maintaining the ocean surface at pH levels high enough that they favor atmosphere to ocean CO2 gas exchange. They are both sensitive to ocean acidification however and as ocean acidification proceeds  their populations and range will decrease. Without adequate ballast organic matter will remain in surface waters and be bacterially reduced there releasing CO2 and absorbing oxygen in surface waters. At some point CO2 will build up to the point that the partial pressure differential that supports current atmosphere to ocean transfer will fail.
 
I will talk about terrestrial sinks after I go do morning farm chores.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2018, 06:10:37 PM by Bruce Steele »

Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1054 on: January 25, 2018, 09:32:23 PM »
...
I'd prefer to take a few steps back, or at least keep one foot on the ball, with things like conservation agriculture (linked by someone this week), if only to put the carbon back into soils and restore ecosystems.

I’m not saying we shouldn’t do that, but...  what if future land planning mapped out specific areas for crops — installing the mindset of: treat that land well, it’s all you get — and other land areas for trees, grasses, environmental remediation.  Perhaps we would appreciate cropland (and fresh food) more when we accept it as only one part of a limited resource for food; whatever else we need must come from vertical farming techniques and processed food.

Edit:  Think of it as an “all of the above” solution.  Vary the amount of food produced by each method according to the carbon emissions each produces, within a set limit.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2018, 11:53:54 PM by Sigmetnow »
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gerontocrat

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1055 on: January 26, 2018, 03:44:15 PM »
Based on biology, the terrestrial sink will continue to increase as long as plant life is not impeded.  With a growing population, food increases alone should continue this trend, even in the face of deforestation.  Although growing concerns have started to ease deforestation in some parts, which would increase the terrestrial sink capabilities.
When an area of land that was rain-forest becomes a plantation of palm-oil trees or sugar plantation a rice field or whatever, or  an area of land that was temperate forest becomes wheat fields it's efficiency as a carbon sink is greatly reduced.

While we are talking, others are doing - bio-fuels, perhaps/definitely the biggest screw-up that came from environmentalists.

What applies to replacing rain-forest with palm oil applies to any other crop.

https://news.mongabay.com/2018/01/biofuel-boost-threatens-even-greater-deforestation-in-indonesia-malaysia-study/

Biofuel boost threatens even greater deforestation in Indonesia, Malaysia: Study
by Hans Nicholas Jong on 25 January 2018


Quote
- A new report projects the global demand for palm oil-based biofuel by 2030 will be six times higher than today if existing and proposed policies in Indonesia, China and the aviation industry hold.
- That surge in demand could result in the clearing of 45,000 square kilometers (17,374 square miles) of forest in Indonesia and Malaysia, the world’s biggest palm oil producers, and the release of an additional 7 billion tons of CO2 emissions a year — higher than current annual emissions by the U.S.
- That impact could be tempered to some degree by the European Union, which plans to phase out all use of palm oil in its biofuel over the next three years, citing environmental concerns.

“It’s well understood that the palm oil industry in Southeast Asia is endemically linked to deforestation and peat drainage, but bio-fuel mandates adopted in the name of climate change mitigation continue to drive palm oil demand higher and higher,”

Note the reference to peat. Many rain-forests are on vast deposits of peat. Draining that land leads to carbon release.

The images below demonstrate how rain-forest plant life seeks and finds every last possible bit of sunshine (it is lovely and cool walking on the forest floor), while open fields and plantations are designed to give each plant its maximum advantage and for ease of harvesting. CO2 capture is therefore far lower.

I have to say that those who believe fixing CO2 emissions are going to fix the human conundrum are living in a fool's paradise.
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Alexander555

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1056 on: January 26, 2018, 06:37:41 PM »
And these palm fields are a ecological disaster. Every part of that tree is poisonous. So only very few species can survive in these forests.

Daniel B.

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1057 on: January 26, 2018, 08:50:08 PM »
Gerontocrat, I must agree.  CO2 emissions are but a small issue in a much bigger problem.

AbruptSLR

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1058 on: January 26, 2018, 10:01:18 PM »
Note the reference to peat. Many rain-forests are on vast deposits of peat. Draining that land leads to carbon release.

Just to provide one example of your point:

Title: "Could the peatlands of Congo be a carbon bomb?"

https://phys.org/news/2017-11-peatlands-congo-carbon.html

Extract: "Scientists and green campaigners say central Africa's peatlands hold gigatonnes of carbon—a stockpile that poses a grave threat to hopes of limiting global warming to two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit).

The product of vegetation decay that occurred aeons ago, the carbon has been safely locked in the soil for thousands of years, but risks being unstoppered by farming, they say.
Released into the air, the gas could add dramatically to greenhouse-gas emissions caused by fossil fuels.

"We have a map of the central Congo peatland we published for the first time this year, which shows that they cover around 145,000 square kilometres (56,000 square miles), an area a bit bigger than the size of England," said Simon Lewis, a scientist from Britain's University of Leeds, on a soil-sampling mission to remote northwest DR Congo.

"We think it stores about 30 billion tonnes of carbon. That's as much carbon as the emissions from fossil fuels, all the emissions from humanity globally for three years.""
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sidd

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1059 on: January 29, 2018, 11:13:50 PM »

Bruce Steele

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1060 on: January 29, 2018, 11:34:17 PM »
    Sidd, Abrupt linked this Atlantic piece up thread .There are a few responses, mine on the missing carbon sink issues.
The linked article presents two different approaches that humanity could follow for feeding the world's population in the coming decades:

Title: "Can Planet Earth Feed 10 Billion People?"

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2018/03/charles-mann-can-planet-earth-feed-10-billion-people/550928
« Last Edit: January 29, 2018, 11:39:58 PM by Bruce Steele »

Bruce Steele

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1061 on: January 29, 2018, 11:46:32 PM »
Sidd, In a query I had re. Soil carbon testing you suggested sampling at three feet. I assume that is because surface carbon is exposed to heat and oxygen that rapidly reduces surface soil carbon but perhaps you could expand on your recommendation.
 I am still less than confident in how terrestrial carbon sinks will fare over the coming decades.

sidd

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1062 on: January 30, 2018, 12:12:32 AM »
Re: soilC down to 1 m

The paper I am thinking of is doi: 10.1016/j.agee.2012.08.011

Soil carbon lost from Mollisols of the North Central U.S.A. with 20 years of agricultural best management practices, Gregg R. Sanford et al. , Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, v162, pp 68 et seq.

From the abstract:

"While the rotationally grazed pasture system sequestered carbon (C) in the surface 15 cm these gains were offset by losses at depth."

They tested six regimes:

"The grain systems were a high-external input, continuous corn system (CS1); a moderate-external input, NT corn–soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.] system (CS2); and an organic corn–soybean–winter wheat with interseeded red clover (Trifolium pratense L.) system (CS3). Forage systems included a high-input corn–alfalfa system (CS4); an organic oats (Avena sativa L.)/alfalfa–corn system (CS5), as well as a rotationally grazed pasture (CS6) seeded to a mixture of red clover, timothy (Phleum pratense L.), smooth bromegrass (Bromus inermis L.), and orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata L.)"

"When the whole soil profile (0–90 cm) was considered the grain systems lost 2 g/kg (p = 0.07) more than did the forage systems between 1989 and 2009. This trend was more pronounced if analysis was limited to the top 30 cm of the horizon where tillage induced loses and manure inputs can have a greater impact on SOC levels. In this case the grain systems lost 3.4 g/kg (p = 0.01) more than the forage systems."

"When analyzed by horizon, significant correlations with SOC change were, on the whole, limited to the surface 0–15 cm horizon"

The rather gloomy conclusion:

"While NT management strategies, inclusion of perennial crops, manure, and grass pasture all had beneficial effects on the C stocks at WICST, none of the six systems sequestered atmospheric C when the entire 90 cm profile was considered. These results are consistent with finding at the WICST mirror site in southern WI, as well as with others ..."

sidd



Bruce Steele

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1063 on: January 30, 2018, 12:49:38 AM »
Thank you Sidd, Although the forage systems appear somewhat ( relatively ) better than grain systems I have concerns that improved forage results in increased cattle per acre on these forage systems. Unless the studies include the potential methane implications of cattle or ruminates in forage systems the resultant GHG effects of methane may compound the soil carbon results.
 I wish something like native grass prairie could also be studied as some sort of control.
 I also wish there might also be some investigations into dehesa systems of pasture-pigs-and oaks as an alternative agricultural option for carbon farming. Trees are the missing part of all the C1 to C6 options tested.

Here is another link to the paper Sidd sourced

https://www.deepdyve.com/lp/elsevier/soil-carbon-lost-from-mollisols-of-the-north-central-u-s-a-with-20-J2VRDAcFFp
« Last Edit: January 30, 2018, 01:01:36 AM by Bruce Steele »

Neven

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1064 on: January 30, 2018, 10:32:56 AM »
Quote
"When the whole soil profile (0–90 cm) was considered the grain systems lost 2 g/kg (p = 0.07) more than did the forage systems between 1989 and 2009. This trend was more pronounced if analysis was limited to the top 30 cm of the horizon where tillage induced loses and manure inputs can have a greater impact on SOC levels. In this case the grain systems lost 3.4 g/kg (p = 0.01) more than the forage systems."

Tillage destroys the soil food web, and my guess this is what is causing the carbon release. Are there any experiments without tillage?
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wili

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1065 on: January 30, 2018, 12:48:03 PM »
Yup:

Quote
No-till farming is widely used in the United States and the number of acres managed in this way continues to grow. This growth is supported by a decrease in costs related to tillage; no-till management results in fewer passes with equipment for approximately equal harvests, and the crop residue prevents evaporation of rainfall and increases water infiltration into the soil.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No-till_farming

Unfortunately, it is also often done with some increases in herbicide, since tilling is one way to cut down weeds as they are first sprouting in the spring. But a good cover crop that is then 'crimped' is equally effective, I am told.
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wili

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1066 on: January 30, 2018, 12:50:48 PM »
Perennial grains like kernza, developed by Wes Jackson and others at the Land Institute, may hold more promise, though I'm not sure rigorous tests have been done yet on its long term effectiveness at carbon sequestration.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Land_Institute

A local brewery (Fair State, Minneapolis, MN, USA; also a collective!) recently featured an ale brewed with kernza, but I haven't had a chance to sample it yet, unfortunately.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2018, 01:00:01 PM by wili »
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."

sidd

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1067 on: January 30, 2018, 08:47:01 PM »
The paper i linked to did include a no till system (NT). Here is another review paper

doi:10.2136/sssaj2013.09.0412

Experimental Consideration, Treatments, and Methods in Determining Soil Organic Carbon Sequestration Rates

Olson et al.

From the Abstract:

"To unequivocally demonstrate that the SOC sequestration has occurred at a specific site, a temporal increasemust be documented relative to pretreatment SOC content and linked attendant changes in soil properties and ecosystem services and functions with proper consideration given to soil spatial variability. Also, a standardized methodology that includes proper experimental design, pretreatment baseline, root zone soil depth consideration, and consistent method of SOC analysis must be used when deter- mining SOC sequestration."

The section called "Soil Carbon Distribution with Depth" has this to say:

"When determining SOC sequestration, storage, or retention it is important to include the entire root zone, which is commonly to a depth of between 1 and 2 m unless there is a root restrictive layer present ..."

"In a long-term tillage study in Illinois (Fig. 2), the NT system showed SOC increase or sequestration in the upper 0- to 5-cm layer, but there was a SOC loss within the 5- to 75-cm layer."

"Because of the expense and effort involved, most soil sampling techniques focus on SOC measurements within the soil surface layer as a primary metric for evaluating SOC change."

Open access. Read the whole thing. I notice Lal is an author.

sidd

Bruce Steele

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1068 on: January 30, 2018, 09:19:24 PM »
Another long term soil carbon study from China shows some similarity to the Wisconsin research linked by Sidd. Although they didn't test as deeply as did the US Mollisols there were carbon gains in shallow soil levels but losses at mid depth. I would bet at 3 ft. Losses were more profound in China.
 Alfalfa that is a no till perennial performed the best re. carbon gains and here is some explanations as to why. From the research article linked below.
 "Among the factors that might explain the relatively large rate of C sequestration for the alfalfa treatment of the present study are greater root biomass of perennial vegetation and litter quality. The amount of root C and rates of SOC sequestration have been shown to be positively correlated (Rasse et al., 2005; Baker et al., 2007). Both shoots and roots are sources of C that can help to improve soil fertility, but perennials allocate relatively more C to roots than shoots compared with annual crops (Bolinder et al., 2002). In other experiments, the relative contribution of alfalfa roots to SOC was 2.7 times more than that of the shoots (Puget & Drinkwater, 2001) and 1.8 times more than that of corn shoots (Molina et al., 2001), which suggests that root-derived C persists for longer in soil than shoot-derived C. The length of time over which net C assimilation occurs, which is longer for perennial vegetation than annual crops, is also an important factor that affects rates of C sequestration (Baker et al., 2007). In our study, the greater length of time of CO2 fixation shown by the perennial plants might have affected C sequestration rates. High quality litter (e.g. legume biomass and fine roots), such as alfalfa in our study, is thought to lead to greater efficiency in microbial carbon use, and therefore more microbial products and greater rates of C sequestration compared with lower quality litter (Cotrufo et al., 2013), such as corn residue in the present study. The decrease in the rate of increase in SOC stocks with increased rates of C additions in the S–M rotations (Figure 3) might have resulted partly from the poorer quality of the litter leading to less efficient C sequestration in the S–M rotations."
 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/ejss.12400/full
 
The problem with all these studies is that they are not full system analysis. They take no measure of the carbon emissions from the tractors or irrigation pumps. They take no measure of the methane emissions from ruminates fed the forage produced.
 This is the reason that I have personally focused on eliminating all fossil fuel carbon emissions from farm equipment first and adding soil carbon only after I first control on farm emissions. Farm produced biofuels are currently the best available way to run farm equipment other than some small electric cultivation equipment available. Compost needs to be sourced from on farm sources because transportation quickly eats up any soil carbon gains.
 Gerontocrat makes some very broad brush critiques of biofuels without offering any alternatives for how farmers might control their on farm carbon emissions with currently available technology. Yes palm oil is a terrible choice as is corn ethanol but people continuing to drive single occupied ICE vehicles on daily commutes is the real problem. So maybe critiques should include solutions and those solutions should have some real world testing included. Feeding more and more human mouths so they can live middle class lifestyles isn't IMO a solution ,it is the problem. As it turns out the only two commercial farmers on this site ( Sidd and I ) utilize on farm produced bio. Maybe bio should be reserved for farm machinery rather than personal transport or air travel options but I ain't King and nobody would like me if I was. Farming is a very difficult choice for making a living and buying solar panels and quarter million dollar electric tractors is never going to be an option for the vast majority of small landholders.

oren

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1069 on: January 31, 2018, 08:50:26 AM »
As usual, well said Bruce.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1070 on: February 01, 2018, 07:23:44 PM »
Moving away from the siren song of “100% pure beef.”

Sonic's New Beef Burger Boasts One Surprisingly Eco-Friendly Ingredient
Quote
Well-known burger chain Sonic has taken this challenge and run with it. Their newest burger, called the Slinger, uses a blend of beef and mushrooms for its patty, cutting down on the amount of beef used in each burger. As Kevin Pang explains at The A.V. Club, every Slinger patty will be comprised of roughly 25-to 30-percent mushrooms. With a large scale production such as Sonic, this seemingly small menu addition could go a long way toward cutting meat consumption. ...
http://www.greenmatters.com/food/2017/06/26/Zagnlt/sonic-mushroom-burger
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sidd

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1071 on: February 01, 2018, 10:00:08 PM »
DeStefano et al. look at soil C changes for different depths for agroforestry:

doi:10.1007/s10457-017-0147-9

From the abstract:

"The transition from agriculture to agroforestry significantly increased SOC stock of 26, 40, and 34% at 0–15, 0–30, and 0–100 cm respectively. The conversion from pasture/grassland to agroforestry produced significant SOC stock increases at 0–30 cm (9%) and 0–30 cm (10%). Switching from uncultivated/other land-uses to agroforestry increased SOC by 25% at 0–30 cm, while a decrease was observed at 0–60 cm (23%)."

The body of the paper has some confusing caveats:

According to our results and considering a full dataset with forest and uncultivated/other land-uses included, agroforestry revealed a significant and positive effect on SOC stocks at 0–30 and 0–100 cm depths. In the reduced dataset, the significant positive effect of agroforestry was observed at all depths, except for 0 to [greater than] 100 cm."

" Findings suggested that the conversion of agricultural land to agroforestry significantly increased SOC stocks at 0–15, 0–30, 0–100, but not at 0–60 and [greater than] 100 cm. ... the results for 0–60 and 0 to [greater than] 100 cm deviated from the general trend,

"Findings seems to support agroforestry: no significant differences were observed in the conversion from pasture/grassland to agroforestry (0–15, 0–30, 0–100, 0 to [greater than] 100 cm), while a significant increase was observed at 0–60 cm."

" Results indicated no significant difference (0–15, 0–100, 0 to [greater than] 100 cm), significant increase (0–30 cm), and significant decrease (0–60 cm) in SOC stocks. The conversion from uncultivated/other to agrisilviculture and agrosilvopastoral systems in SOC at 0–30 cm, while a significant reduction was observed in the transition from uncultivated/other to agrisilviculture at 0–60 cm."

"No significant differences in SOC stocks were detected in the conversion from forest plantation to agroforestry at 0–60 and 0–100 cm. Similarly, the land-use change from forest plantation to silvopasture did not produce significant results at the same depths. Unfortunately, the database for this category had observations only from a few studies"

" ... decreases in SOC stocks were observed in the conversion of pastures with conifers plantations, while little effects were reported in broadleaf plantations. "

"The conversion from forest to agroforestry lead to losses in SOC stocks in the top layers, while no significant differences were detected when deeper layers were included."

" ... the conversion from agriculture to agroforestry increased SOC stocks in most of the cases. Significant increases were also observed in the transition from pasture/grassland to agroforestry in the top layers, especially with the inclusion perennial in the systems, such as in silvopasture and agrosilvopastoral systems. Finally, the conversion from uncultivated/other land-uses to agroforestry produced inconsistent results ..."

The results are quite ambiguous, especially for larger depths. I attach Fig 10, for 0 to greater than 100cm
exhibiting that error bars are quite large.

sidd



gerontocrat

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1072 on: February 02, 2018, 12:17:05 PM »
Another long term soil carbon study from China shows some similarity to the Wisconsin research linked by Sidd. Although they didn't test as deeply as did the US Mollisols there were carbon gains in shallow soil levels but losses at mid depth. I would bet at 3 ft. Losses were more profound in China.
 
The problem with all these studies is that they are not full system analysis. They take no measure of the carbon emissions from the tractors or irrigation pumps. They take no measure of the methane emissions from ruminates fed the forage produced.
 This is the reason that I have personally focused on eliminating all fossil fuel carbon emissions from farm equipment first and adding soil carbon only after I first control on farm emissions. Farm produced biofuels are currently the best available way to run farm equipment other than some small electric cultivation equipment available. Compost needs to be sourced from on farm sources because transportation quickly eats up any soil carbon gains.

Gerontocrat makes some very broad brush critiques of biofuels without offering any alternatives for how farmers might control their on farm carbon emissions with currently available technology.

Yes palm oil is a terrible choice as is corn ethanol but people continuing to drive single occupied ICE vehicles on daily commutes is the real problem. So maybe critiques should include solutions and those solutions should have some real world testing included. Feeding more and more human mouths so they can live middle class lifestyles isn't IMO a solution ,it is the problem. As it turns out the only two commercial farmers on this site ( Sidd and I ) utilize on farm produced bio. Maybe bio should be reserved for farm machinery rather than personal transport or air travel options but I ain't King and nobody would like me if I was. Farming is a very difficult choice for making a living and buying solar panels and quarter million dollar electric tractors is never going to be an option for the vast majority of small landholders.

I would be very foolish to criticise what you and Sidd are doing on your farms. A good few farmers in the UK have digesters to extract methane from cow slurry, which they then either sell to a local business and / or adapt machinery for its use, and good on 'em.

My critique of bio-fuels started with the opposite view . A decade or two ago world sugar prices collapsed  through over-supply and many small and medium-sized sugar plantations were going bust. In Brazil they realised that ethanol could readily be made from this surplus sugar and sold as an additive to gasoline. What a good idea! The plantations already exist so let's make the best use of them.

But then investors realised that here was a money-farm - so mega-corp builds vast new plantations where once was rainforest. Government assisted by mandating the use of ethanol in gasoline.

The EU did exactly the same thing with palm-oil (which they are now reversing), the US with corn, now SE Asia is also doing it, again with palm oil.
( https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,317.msg140018.html#msg140018 )

So it is not bio-fuel itself that is the issue - it is how good and sensible ideas end up perverted and corrupted into yet another assault on our vulnerable environment. I do not have the solutions, but I do try through various means to get the message out that lifestyles have to change or they will be changed for us by a series of unfortunate vets.

Best of luck to you and Sidd with your arms - the future (that will not include me for that long) needs you.
"Para a Causa do Povo a Luta Continua!"
"And that's all I'm going to say about that". Forrest Gump
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1073 on: February 03, 2018, 02:47:27 PM »
”Consumer interest in meat alternatives has gained traction amid concerns about animal welfare and the environmental impact of livestock production. A November report from CoBank, a U.S. farm lender, labeled protein products made from plants, insects and cultured meat as a top food trend to watch in 2018 and beyond.”

Tyson Joins Bill Gates, Cargill to Invest in Lab-Meat Producer
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-01-29/tyson-joins-bill-gates-cargill-to-invest-in-lab-meat-producer
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Bruce Steele

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1074 on: February 03, 2018, 06:41:27 PM »
Gerontocrat,  I quess the hardest part is realizing there really just aren't any solutions. If you break it down to what it takes just to survive, feed yourself , reduce all transport to very limited ranges, I mean a very strict and unforgiving pursuit of zero carbon emissions it is still not going to be zero carbon. Nobody has figured it out. Maybe you can imagine a reversion to a lithic based civilization . I really think the cost of even those first few kilns , coke fired, still cost forests .
 The forests are important in the terrestrial sink. Agriculture of crops is for all the evidence a carbon source. Carbon from deep soil is dropping in the crop mollisols studies but it looks to be increasing in the forest soils. So our food production methods are a source of carbon and even if you figured out how to run tools electrically just farming and eatting are contributing to carbon sources.
 I am going on in this critique because zero is where we all somehow need to go. I think we are in addition suppose to figure out how to create vast new terrestrial sinks to pull down carbon.
 So what does perfect look like, who is close?  How do we at least farm without bleeding carbon?
 I wish there was a reality show. A show with a multi-million dollar prize that challenged a zero fossil fuel existence . The challenge should also include agriculture that resulted in sinking carbon. Maybe nobody would like to see what the winning strategies look like. Maybe they would but we have should be asking what perfect looks like. Maybe someone is already living zero carbon. We should all be paying more attention to how some people may already have arrived at a place we are all headed,like it or not.



 
 

JimD

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1075 on: February 05, 2018, 10:45:12 PM »
Here is an amazing story that will really bring home understanding on a bunch of topics.

It is very long and very good.  To get the full benefit you do have to read to the end as that is where the real kicker comes into play (isn't it always like that).

Note for when you get to the end of the story; remember that following the near record water year last year in CA we are already deep into one of the driest years on record this year. 

https://story.californiasunday.com/resnick-a-kingdom-from-dust?

We do not err because truth is difficult to see. It is visible at a glance. We err because this is more comfortable. Alexander Solzhenitsyn

How is it conceivable that all our technological progress - our very civilization - is like the axe in the hand of the pathological criminal? Albert Einstein

gerontocrat

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1076 on: February 05, 2018, 11:56:35 PM »
Gerontocrat,  I quess the hardest part is realizing there really just aren't any solutions. If you break it down to what it takes just to survive, feed yourself , reduce all transport to very limited ranges, I mean a very strict and unforgiving pursuit of zero carbon emissions it is still not going to be zero carbon.
 
Maybe someone is already living zero carbon. We should all be paying more attention to how some people may already have arrived at a place we are all headed,like it or not.

Hullo Bruce - seeking perfection is impossible. Zero carbon emissions is impossible. But we can go a long way towards it and do what we can to keep the carbon sinks healthy. As I have said before, some people do plant trees and regenerate other environments in their spare time to get their net emissions down.

But the killer is mega-corp - an example from the link posted by JimD above this post.

https://story.californiasunday.com/resnick-a-kingdom-from-dust?

How one "farmer" can wreck a large part of California. How does one stop this before the damage is permanent and irreversible? How to be depressed at the end of the day.



"Para a Causa do Povo a Luta Continua!"
"And that's all I'm going to say about that". Forrest Gump
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oren

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1077 on: February 07, 2018, 08:30:24 AM »
Here is an amazing story that will really bring home understanding on a bunch of topics.

It is very long and very good.  To get the full benefit you do have to read to the end as that is where the real kicker comes into play (isn't it always like that).

Note for when you get to the end of the story; remember that following the near record water year last year in CA we are already deep into one of the driest years on record this year. 

https://story.californiasunday.com/resnick-a-kingdom-from-dust?
Thank you JimD for the link. Long is an understatement.... but it's very well written. My main takeaway is how strong the Tragedy of the Commons is playing here, with lots of personal profit to be made in the process. The methodical pumping of California's groundwater in the face of all long-term logic sends a very strong message about our civilization and its long-term prospects.

gerontocrat

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1078 on: February 08, 2018, 03:47:17 PM »
Gerontocrat,  I quess the hardest part is realizing there really just aren't any solutions. If you break it down to what it takes just to survive, feed yourself , reduce all transport to very limited ranges, I mean a very strict and unforgiving pursuit of zero carbon emissions it is still not going to be zero carbon.
 
Maybe someone is already living zero carbon. We should all be paying more attention to how some people may already have arrived at a place we are all headed,like it or not.
Another one for Bruce and Sidd - the commercial farmers on this forum.

Trouble is, it ain't just CO2, it is water (discussed above) and - just as bad (including direct  threats to human health) ANTIBIOTICS

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/feb/08/huge-levels-of-antibiotic-use-in-us-farming-revealed

Huge levels of antibiotic use in US farming revealed
Concerns raised over weakened regulations on imports in potential post-Brexit trade deals

Quote
Livestock raised for food in the US are dosed with five times as much antibiotic medicine as farm animals in the UK, new data has shown, raising questions about rules on meat imports under post-Brexit trade deals.

The difference in rates of dosage rises to at least nine times as much in the case of cattle raised for beef, and may be as high as 16 times the rate of dosage per cow in the UK. There is currently a ban on imports of American beef throughout Europe, owing mainly to the free use of growth hormones in the US.

Higher use of antibiotics, particularly those that are critical for human health – the medicines “of last resort”, which the World Health Organisation wants banned from use in animals – is associated with rising resistance to the drugs and the rapid evolution of “superbugs” that can kill or cause serious illness.

But not just in the USA
India's farmed chickens dosed with world's strongest antibiotics, study finds

Quote
Warning over wider global health impacts after findings reveal hundreds of tonnes of colistin – the ‘antibiotic of last resort’ – are being shipped to India’s farms

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/feb/01/indias-farmed-chickens-dosed-with-worlds-strongest-antibiotics-study-finds

If the CO2 don't get you, something else will.
"Para a Causa do Povo a Luta Continua!"
"And that's all I'm going to say about that". Forrest Gump
"Damn, I wanted to see what happened next" (Epitaph)

Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1079 on: February 09, 2018, 09:57:26 PM »
Speaking of chicken impacts...

The CDC Is Begging People to Stop Cuddling Chickens
Snuggling and smooching your poultry may end in salmonella.
Quote
Last year, 23 percent of the people who reported contracting salmonella from homegrown fowl had recently kissed their chickens (seven percent) or snuggled them (16 percent).
https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/cdc-chickens-backyard-salmonella-kissing-cuddling
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1080 on: February 09, 2018, 10:02:51 PM »
U.S.:  TVA’s EnergyRight Solutions program is offering incentives for farmers to trade their diesel irrigation systems for electric. One farmer who did saw a 250 percent increase in his crop yield.
Quote
“Changing to electric irrigation pumps is a smart business decision for my farm and the environment,” says Justin Unruh of Unruh Farms, which grows corn and cotton. “Electricity is cleaner and the operating cost is much lower and predictable. Eliminating diesel fuel and maintenance allows me to add money to my bottom line and implement more efficient farming practices to improve yields.”
https://www.tva.gov/Newsroom/Helping-Farmers-Thrive
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1081 on: February 11, 2018, 07:28:51 PM »
NASCAR racing fans are not generally thought of being a progressive sort of folk. ;)

“Just a NASCAR fan in a Trump hat & People Eat Tasty Animals T-shirt trying @LeilaniMunter ‘s veggie burger. ”
https://twitter.com/APgelston/status/962387663243415554
Photo at the link.

“Here's @LeilaniMunter on her plant-based burger”
https://twitter.com/APgelston/status/962715971638177793
Brief video (with above-mentioned NASCAR fan) at the link. :)
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JimD

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1082 on: February 22, 2018, 08:37:28 PM »
Quote
Private companies such as Coca-Cola and Nestlé are allegedly in the process of privatizing the largest reserve of water, known as the Guarani Aquifer, in South America. The aquifer is located beneath the surface of Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay and is the second largest-known aquifer system in the world....

Sweet!  Don't you love it.

http://www.defenddemocracy.press/plundering-the-planet-coca-cola-and-nestle-to-privatize-the-largest-reserve-of-water-in-south-america/
We do not err because truth is difficult to see. It is visible at a glance. We err because this is more comfortable. Alexander Solzhenitsyn

How is it conceivable that all our technological progress - our very civilization - is like the axe in the hand of the pathological criminal? Albert Einstein

TerryM

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1083 on: February 24, 2018, 03:34:24 AM »
Nestle is continuously sucking away at our swamp water here near Waterloo Ontario. Strange that they never advertise it as "Pure Canadian Swamp Water".
I'd dive in a little deeper, but they've lawyers behind every aquifer.
Terry

SteveMDFP

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1084 on: March 03, 2018, 06:51:03 PM »
Interesting article about research on ocean acidification in Alaska:

Kachemak Bay may be a model for ocean acidification monitoring
http://kbbi.org/post/kachemak-bay-may-be-model-ocean-acidification-monitoring

Quote
In the past, measuring ocean acidification has been primarily done in the open ocean. But in recent years, scientists have been interested in studying how the process plays out in near-shore environments.

“Well for Alaska, we just don’t have any near-shore measurements,” Amanda Kelley said, a professor and researcher with the University of Alaska Fairbanks. ”If you think about it, many, many important species to this region live in near-shore environments as a nursery or rearing ground. Then organisms like bivalves and shellfish, they don’t typically go out into the open ocean.”

aperson

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1085 on: March 04, 2018, 01:59:42 AM »
Hard to tell where this belongs more, given that the hydrological cycle affects so many components of our life. I opted for this thread given that the snowpack in the Western US is such a critical water source for agriculture.

Title:Dramatic declines in snowpack in the western US
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41612-018-0012-1

Abstract:
Mountain snowpack stores a significant quantity of water in the western US, accumulating during the wet season and melting during the dry summers and supplying much of the water used for irrigated agriculture, and municipal and industrial uses. Updating our earlier work published in 2005, we find that with 14 additional years of data, over 90% of snow monitoring sites with long records across the western US now show declines, of which 33% are significant (vs. 5% expected by chance) and 2% are significant and positive (vs. 5% expected by chance). Declining trends are observed across all months, states, and climates, but are largest in spring, in the Pacific states, and in locations with mild winter climate. We corroborate and extend these observations using a gridded hydrology model, which also allows a robust estimate of total western snowpack and its decline. We find a large increase in the fraction of locations that posted decreasing trends, and averaged across the western US, the decline in average April 1 snow water equivalent since mid-century is roughly 15–30% or 25–50 km3, comparable in volume to the West’s largest man-made reservoir, Lake Mead.
computer janitor by trade

gerontocrat

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1086 on: March 09, 2018, 09:05:20 PM »
My oh-so-green UK Government.
Quote

UK defies EU over Indonesian palm oil trade, leaked papers show
UK is pushing for a deal that would boost imports linked to deforestation despite EU moves to ban unsustainable palm oil, diplomatic papers reveal

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/mar/09/uk-defies-eu-over-indonesian-palm-oil-trade-leaked-papers-show

Some things just make one want to puke.
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1087 on: March 09, 2018, 09:13:30 PM »
”Some environmental advocates fighting for the plastic bans cite a report that by 2050 the oceans could contain more plastics by weight than fish.”

California looks to ban removable plastic bottle caps, restrict plastic straws
- California lawmakers are considering a bill that would require the beverage industry to use attachable caps on plastic bottles.
- If it passes, the California measure could set a bottle cap and plastic bottle standard for the rest of the nation.
- At the same time, California also is looking to impose restrictions on restaurants handing out plastic straws by requiring customers specifically request them.
- The plastic straw bill follows the coastal city of Malibu recently passing an outright ban on plastic straw use.
https://www.cnbc.com/2018/03/07/california-targets-removable-plastic-bottle-caps-plastic-straws.html
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1088 on: March 09, 2018, 09:17:15 PM »
“The narrative of the 20th century was that we have to produce more food and that was all about a very narrow range of crops.  Now because we have other issues we are trying to solve, such as climate and nutrition there’s a recognition you can’t do that with just those crops.”

A Warning Cry From the Doomsday Vault
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-03-09/a-warning-cry-from-the-doomsday-vault
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Alexander555

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Archimid

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1090 on: March 12, 2018, 02:32:01 AM »
Lab-grown 'clean' meat could be on sale by end of 2018, says producer

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/clean-meat-lab-grown-available-restaurants-2018-global-warming-greenhouse-emissions-a8236676.html

Quote
Meat grown in a laboratory could be on restaurant menus by the end of the year, one manufacturer has claimed.
I am an energy reservoir seemingly intent on lowering entropy for self preservation.

El Cid

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1091 on: March 12, 2018, 01:18:59 PM »
Lab-grown 'clean' meat could be on sale by end of 2018, says producer



Quote
Meat grown in a laboratory could be on restaurant menus by the end of the year, one manufacturer has claimed.

Much simpler would be if people stopped eating meat - or at least reduced it significantly. The Earth can easily sustain 10-10 bn people on a meatless diet...

Hefaistos

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1092 on: March 12, 2018, 08:36:22 PM »
My oh-so-green UK Government.
Quote

UK defies EU over Indonesian palm oil trade, leaked papers show
UK is pushing for a deal that would boost imports linked to deforestation despite EU moves to ban unsustainable palm oil, diplomatic papers reveal

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/mar/09/uk-defies-eu-over-indonesian-palm-oil-trade-leaked-papers-show

Some things just make one want to puke.
Palm oil itself is bad for your organism.
It's added to most processed food, the worst possible oil one could find from a health point of view.

Archimid

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1093 on: March 12, 2018, 11:17:04 PM »
Quote
Much simpler would be if people stopped eating meat - or at least reduced it significantly. The Earth can easily sustain 10-10 bn people on a meatless diet...

Sounds good and all, but how do you propose to get people to not eat meat? It is hard enough to convince people that have the choice to stop eating meat.  Imagine people that don't have a choice where their calories come from, but will take the calories wherever they come from. As a meat eater, I can honestly tell you, that is not going to happen, unless a better alternative is found.

And is not like agricultural farms are not guilty of emissions. Agricultural soils and some crops like rice emit significant amounts of CO2 too.

If we could get food from a fully solar powered factory where raw chemicals and water was the input and cultured meats and carbs was the output we would probably feed way more than 10 billion and completely eliminate agricultural emissions. Such setup would likely be more resilient to climate change to boot.

Personally I won't give up meats, even if it ends the world. However I would gladly eat any reasonably good alternative like factory cultured meats.
I am an energy reservoir seemingly intent on lowering entropy for self preservation.

Tor Bejnar

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1094 on: March 13, 2018, 12:04:14 AM »
I recall reading a nutrition report on a rural part of Bihar, India nearly 40 years ago.  It showed monthly protein amounts in the typical diet, and the only months where protein was up was during the months they ate rats because they didn't have much else to eat.  If they kept the rats out of the stored grain, they wouldn't have eaten the rats (having plenty of grain for human consumption), but their annual protein intake would cause a more serious malnutrition. 

In another part of India that year, I spent the night in a farmer's two-roomed home (one for the cow, one for the people).  I had been shown the several ~30 gallon mud-lined wicker baskets in the loft that held grain - sealed to rodents until opened, and then (at night) a scanvenger's free-for-all.  The second the oil lamp was put out, the scampering of many tiny feet (and other rodent sounds) was heard everywhere.  it was quite eerie.

Here's an article about rat eaters from a quick internet search.

So let's hear it for animal protein!  (I get most of my animal protein from dairy and eggs, consequently supporting the veal and chicken meat industries.  Makes me want to become a vegan when I think about it.)
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1095 on: March 15, 2018, 06:15:02 PM »
Here’s another reason to not drink the bottled stuff, unless it’s your only source of potable water.

Plastic particles found in bottled water
Quote
Tests on major brands of bottled water have found that nearly all of them contained tiny particles of plastic.
...
Sherri Mason, a professor of chemistry at the university, conducted the analysis and told BBC News: "We found [plastic] in bottle after bottle and brand after brand.

"It's not about pointing fingers at particular brands; it's really showing that this is everywhere, that plastic has become such a pervasive material in our society, and it’s pervading water - all of these products that we consume at a very basic level."

Currently, there is no evidence that ingesting very small pieces of plastic (microplastics) can cause harm, but understanding the potential implications is an active area of science. ...
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/amp/science-environment-43388870
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Alexander555

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1096 on: March 17, 2018, 09:08:26 PM »
It's already an old article, but still interesting. It shows that 40 % of al the water in that river comes from glaciers. That's probably going to have a big impact at many places on this planet.


https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2011/jul/22/glacier-europe-water-crisis

sidd

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Neven

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1098 on: March 18, 2018, 12:56:24 PM »
Ah, yes, ecomodernism, the escape hatch for climate risk deniers. And, of course, all environmentalists are doomers. I didn't know Steven Pinker was into that cowardly stuff. I watched a couple of YouTube videos of him recently and thought he said interesting things.
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zizek

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Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« Reply #1099 on: March 19, 2018, 04:21:34 PM »

http://progressandperil.com/2018/02/23/the-conquest-of-climate/


This article is such a treat.
Quote
Environmentalists cite the 2006-10 drought in Syria, often credited with sparking the civil war there, as an omen of the crises climate change will bring. [2] But the drought also hit Israel, and the effect there was altogether different. Shortages forced Israel to tighten its already stringent water conservation and recycling standards. More importantly, they prompted breakthroughs in reverse-osmosis desalination technology, cutting by half the energy needed to extract fresh water from the sea and dramatically lowering the cost to just 58 cents per cubic meter (1,000 liters) of drinkable water. [3] As a result, Israel’s water situation U-turned from worsening scarcity to sufficiency. The arid country now desalinates 600 million cubic meters of water annually, easing the pressure on natural freshwater sources like the Sea of Galilee. More desal plants are being built. By 2020 Israel will get at least 40 percent of its water, including irrigation water, from desalination. [4]

See, Syria, all you had to be is an incredibly rich nation that receives billions of dollars of foreign aid. If only

Anyways, he concludes the drought section with this:
Quote
The examples of Israel and California show that developed countries will never face serious water shortages in a warming climate. Spreading water security to the rest of the world will thus depend not on decarbonization but on development of a very basic kind: dams, canals and pipelines; sewage treatment and recycling plants; low-flow shower heads and irrigation sprinklers; a backstop of desalination plants. Investments in these technologies and infrastructures, new and old, will resolve problems of drought and aridity that have bedeviled us since civilization began—and eliminate the worst risk of climate change in passing.

You see this so often, especially now more than ever. All you gotta do is *lists a bunch of obvious solutions*, and you'll be fine. Here, here's a magic wand. Climate change is no problemo, because i figured it all out. Start building all this infrastructure, poor people, you'll make it one day!