Can farmers help address climate change?

By Nigel Parry

From biofuels to biochar, the ways in which farms can become part of the solution are myriad.
Professor Steve Wratten of the Bio-Protection Research Centre at Lincoln University says farmers can help curb the effects of climate change. Image / Supplied
Professor Steve Wratten of the Bio-Protection Research Centre at Lincoln University says farmers can help curb the effects of climate change. Image / Supplied

Climate change can have significant effects on farming and food production.

The boot should be on the other foot, according to Professor Steve Wratten of the Bio-Protection Research Centre at Lincoln University. Farmers can combat climate change.

“Most pesticides and fertilisers are not needed and overused,” he claims.

One of the environmental effects of all this waste is overusing products that are made by carbon-intensive processes. We should use them wisely and be more aware of the economic thresholds before choosing to spray. A complimentary solution is to look after and enhance ‘nature’s services’; pollination by bees, topsoil worked by earthworms, pest control by ladybirds.

“We understand these processes and realise they have been knocked about by modern agriculture,” Wratten says.

Read more here: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/element-magazine/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503340&objectid=11383615