I have long felt a sense of outrage that mining companies can invade farmland to tap coal seam gas regardless of the wishes or concerns of the landowner. Accessing this gas usually involves a process called fracking (hydraulic fracturing), where a chemical cocktail combined with sand and water is applied under very high pressure to shale rock, to create new channels to release their petro-chemical components. There are over twenty chemicals involved in the fracking cocktail, some of which have not been identified by the patent holder and some of which are known to be hazardous. (more…)
Archive for the ‘Business Concepts’ Category
The first leg of my recently completed seminar tour of North America involved my first visit to Canada. We visited Toronto to deliver our Four Day Certificate in Sustainable Agriculture followed by a field day designed to demonstrate biological principles in action. Attendees included large scale cash croppers, Mennonite farmers, permaculturists, consultants and agronomists. The questions flowed like wine and Joel Williams (my co-presenter) and I found it more difficult than usual to stick to the schedule. The Canadians, however, proved to be a warm, intelligent bunch and we thoroughly enjoyed the sharing. (more…)
A few weeks back, while having my hair cut at a local salon, I was asked about my profession. I said that I taught farmers around the world how to grow with less need for chemicals. I explained that I was constantly researching the links between soil health and human health, with an emphasis upon the importance of nutrient-dense food. The hairdresser responded, “what has the soil got to do with food?” Oh my goodness! Where do I start? (more…)
I was recently asked to do a presentation for the Australian version of TED.com. These talks represent an opportunity to share important ideas with the world. Last year TED talks achieved over one billion views, so it can be a remarkable tool to sponsor change.
I chose to speak about an issue of unparalleled importance at this point in time – the role of farmers in literally saving the planet. The presentation called ‘Humus Saves The World‘, offers a range of proactive strategies that allows everyone the opportunity to replace apathy with action in this most important of issues.
This week the planet reached a milestone where carbon dioxide in the atmosphere reached 400ppm for the first time in 3 million years. This talk is a desperate call to action and I am hopeful that you might decide to share this message with as many people as possible within your network. This is important because if the video receives enough views, it will attract the attention of those that make the decisions about expanding the coverage to the main TED website. If you can find the small amount of time to watch this presentation, I am sure you will agree that the message is so urgent, that it needs to get out there. Sharing this it will help. Thank you.
Here’s the link: http://youtu.be/8Q1VnwcpW7E
Following my recent address to a crowd of climate change activists on the steps of City Hall in LA, I was flooded with urgent enquiries about the spelling of a word I had used several times during my presentation. I immediately assumed that word was “mycorrhizal”, as this truly is a spelling bee special. To my amazement, the mystery word was “humus” and I was shocked to realise that my uncommon passion for this wonderful substance was just that. It was horrifying to realise how disconnected from the source of our food many of us have become. I was dumbstruck to think that the very life blood of our planet could remain anonymous. (more…)
Colin Hamilton and his partner, Beverley, have embarked on a journey of discovery. They farm 3000 acres near Narromine, in the central west of NSW. They have cropped cereals, cotton and legumes on the farm for the past fifteen years using the standard range of farm chemicals and acid fertilisers. After attending seminars by some of the leaders in the burgeoning biological agriculture movement, Col decided to initiate changes on his farm. (more…)
John Norton heads the groundbreaking South Australian company, Bio-Tech Organics. This company was the very first NTS distributor in Australia and for the past fifteen years they have carved out a role as leaders in biological horticulture. John is now one of the World’s leading potato consultants and he has been responsible for record yields of this crop, achieving both quantity and quality. He is also a gifted consultant in viticulture and small crops. Recently, I delivered a one day course in South Australia and I took the opportunity to question John about his strategies and successes. (more…)
Heinz and Angela Gugger proved to be perfect candidates to embrace and benefit from the biological approach. They had not farmed prior to their current enterprise so the had no pre-existing paradigms to shift. They attended the NTS four day Certificate in Sustainable Agriculture course several years ago, liked what they heard and applied the principles to their farm. Mary Valley Orchards has gone on to become a showpiece of biological orchard management and this week they won the Sunshine Coast Environmental Council award for sustainable agriculture at a ceremony affectionately called “The Froggies”. (more…)
At a recent Acres USA conference I was particularly impressed with a keynote presentation by the International, bestselling author, Jeffrey Smith. His integrity shone through and his research was exceptional. He agreed to the following interview and we spent a fascinating afternoon together. Jeffrey is the world’s foremost expert on the dangers of GM food. He has consulted with world leaders on this issue and has been often quoted in leading media outlets including the New York Times, The Washington Post and Time Magazine. (more…)
There is a very special NTS event scheduled for 27th Sep – 1st October. Some of you may be familiar with my love affair with a little volcanic island called Norfolk, located 150 minutes from Brisbane in the emerald blue pacific. I was originally sponsored by the Norfolk Island government to educate local growers about sustainable agriculture and I have returned several times for seminars over the past two years. Then, last year we decided to conduct one of our four day certificate courses on the island and that proved a resounding success. (more…)