Climate Change Mitigation and World's Food Sustainability: Agroforests may be just what the world needs

in STEMGeeks4 months ago

The continued warming of the planet by greenhouse gases and its effect of bringing about erratic climate has made the world realize the importance of forests beyond just being biodiversity hotspots, sources of food, and industrial raw materials, among several other primary benefits that humans derive from forests.

In short, we have come to realize how important forests are in the maintenance of a climate in addition to the numerous other benefits, some of which I have stated above. However, for the benefit of those who do not know or who do not understand how forests help maintain climates, let me briefly explain.

This planet could have been stuck in the ice age, if not for greenhouse gases that form a blanket of air in the atmosphere and help absorb reflected solar radiation from the sun, thus preventing the radiation from returning into space. By doing so, the greenhouse gases help raise the atmosphere's temperature, leading to the planet's exit from the ice age. I mean, ice usually thaws with increased temperature.

However, there is a catch

The activities leading to the exit of the planet from the ice age are part of the normal ecosystem process without the influence of man. As the human population increases and technology advances, we started altering things and interfering with the natural flux of greenhouse gases. Specifically, we started releasing more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, which leads to an increasing planet's temperature, and then erratic climate.

But that's not where I'm really going.

The chief among the greenhouse gases is carbon dioxide. What makes it significant is the rate at which its emission has multiplied and keeps on being multiplied over the years. According to the scientific community, if the world can have control over the carbon cycle, we are sure to have a good chance of mitigating climate change.


An agroforestry land consisting of grassland for animal grazing and trees. Source: World Agroforestry on flickr

The carbon cycle consists of two major parts:

  1. Processes that add carbon, usually in the form of carbon dioxide, into the atmosphere. Naturally, these include the respiration and decomposition of biological organisms, volcanic activities, weathering of carbonated rocks, and natural forest fires. Anthropogenically, these include the burning of fossil fuels, slash-and-burn agriculture, and other man-made activities.
  2. Processes that sequestrate carbon from the atmosphere. Naturally, these include photosynthesis and the storage of carbon as soil organic carbon.

Anthropologically, very little is being done to sequestrate carbon except in special circumstances. Thus, a significantly disproportionate amount of carbon is being emitted compared to the amount being sequestrated annually. This constitutes the fundamental problem of global warming and climate change.

Now that we know what the problem is, there are 3 possible solutions:

  1. Limit emission
  2. Increase sequestration
  3. Limit emission and at the same time, increase sequestration.

When it comes to limiting emissions, we can only try to limit anthropological emissions and this is exactly what climate scientists and activists have been clamoring about all over the media and in real life. A good example is the recent blockage of access to a proposed coal mine in Germany by climate activists led by Greta Thunder. Coal is a fossil whose burning generates energy as well as the emission of carbon dioxide.

When it comes to sequestration, trying to artificially sequestrate carbon is capital-intensive and remains an active research area in the scientific community. The major focus is presently on natural sequestration - how the process can be optimized for the benefit of the planet. In other words, the forests have been the ones helping us to regulate our climate so far.

Thus scientists have been investigating how carbon sequestration varies with land usage. So far, the forests have received the largest share of attention which has led to a worldwide campaign against deforestation, and a campaign for reforestation and afforestation in its place. However, if we are to leave all forests alone and create forests where there are none before in order to optimize carbon sequestration, this will largely clash with our interest in agriculture as means of creating food sustainability.

Primarily, agriculture requires that forests are cleared and the lands cultivated. According to various research findings, agricultural lands are less efficient in sequestrating carbon than forested lands.

What Agroforestry does

With agroforestry, we are killing two birds with a single stone - farming and creating forests at the same time. By doing this, our interest in agriculture and the world's food sustainability, as well as the optimization of carbon sequestration could be protected.

In actual fact, the potential of agroforestry to offer more benefits to mankind in terms of food and material needs is more considering that trees are deliberately planted which comes with immense benefits. In the same vein, research is ongoing to see how effective these agroforests are in sequestrating carbon as compared to forested lands. There are no enough data to make any conclusion yet, but all evidences are pointing to the fact that agroforests may offer us much more than ordinary forests even in terms of carbon sequestration.

What do you think?

Posted with STEMGeeks


One of my biggest qualms with the “climate change” narrative is it’s been around for decades, since the 1960’s and they keep trying to change the wording and the goalposts. There have been tyrants that have said the ice caps will melt because of global warming. They have said the planet will suffer famine and massive land loss. It’s all scare tactics and fear porn. The simple fact is that climate outside of the tropics is always going to be erratic no matter if humans are industrialized or not. You cannot control that and this is a fight for more control and killing of millions of people and businesses in the faux “disaster”. If there was really an issue, the best way is to present the problems to the smartest universities in the world and give them a few years or a decade to come up with solutions to the problems instead of compulsion and mandates on things. The very second compulsion comes into the picture you know it’s an absolute farce.

Human beings are a brilliant species! We come up with solutions to problems every single day and love to innovate. This is another problem that we can and will innovate our way to a better place but that’s not what governments and corporations want. They want control, and that’s it.

Climate Change World Food

Well, I believe Climate change is a significant threat to global food sustainability and most people are yet to see the gravity of the situation. The effects of rising temperatures, extreme weather events, and changing precipitation patterns can damage crops and disrupt food production.

Additionally, as the global population continues to grow, the demand for food will increase, putting further strain on food systems. It is paramount for individuals, governments, and organizations to take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to the impacts of climate change, and promote sustainable food production practices in order to ensure a food secure future for all.

Hopefully this will help

I challenge you on the “threat” to food sustainability. There’s actually good data by Dr. Steven Koonin that the planet has gotten 40% greener since the 1980’s and it’s in arid and semi-arid areas which means deserts are shrinking not growing. The additional factor that the “climate scientists” are not taking into account is that increases in carbon dioxide reduce the time plants need to keep their pores open and that means they evaporate less water when they do that and it reduces the amount of water needed to keep the plants growing.

As well, why do you think industrial greenhouses pump CO2 into greenhouses? That’s because it’s exactly what the plants want and need! They pump concentrated CO2 into the greenhouses at a rate far higher than it is atmospherically.

The “science” for this climate scare hypocrisy is shoddy at best and highly politicized at worst.

Hey bro what's up?Agriculture is a significant contributor to climate change and primarily through the emissions of greenhouse gases such as methane and nitrous oxide from livestock and the use of synthetic fertilizers.

Of course, I know that agriculture contributes to emissions, but in a disproportionately lower amount compared to other sources of emission. Combining agriculture and forestry together will not further limit emissions but create a sink for carbon.

Realy it is very important post for us so many useful information.Thank you so much my buddy

You are welcome

Your content has been voted as a part of Encouragement program. Keep up the good work!

Use Ecency daily to boost your growth on platform!

Support Ecency
Vote for new Proposal
Delegate HP and earn more

 4 months ago Reveal Comment