An hour after Pope Francis spoke to Congress and issued “a call for a courageous and responsible effort […] to avert the most serious effects of the environmental deterioration caused by human activity,” a rally on the National Mall highlighted a “shovel-ready solution” to the climate crisis.
Speaking at the Moral Action on Climate Justice demonstratoin Thursday, Larry Kopald, co-founder and president of organization The Carbon Underground, said it’s “a solution that will put carbon back in the ground, a solution that will feed us better, make us healthier, create jobs, and even boost our economy.”
“What is this magic solution?” he asked. “You’re standing on it […] It’s the soil.”
Kopald and his organization are not alone is calling for soil to be seen as part of a climate solution, with organizations including the Center for Food Safety, Organic Consumers Association, the Rodale Institute, and Vandana Shiva’s Navdanya also touting the approach. Regenerative agriculture’s ability to heal soil was also the focus of the Regenerative International Conference in Costa Rica this June, as well as the Soil Not Oil International Conference held earlier this month in Richmond, California.
Kopald explained the problem with the dominant method of food production, saying, “Industrial agriculture techniques have destroyed most of the soil. Seventy percent of the soil on earth is dead or dying, and all of that carbon that should be in the soil is now stuck in the atmosphere causing climate change.”
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But healthy soil fed through agroecological methods can be an effective carbon sink, he explained.
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