THETFORD, Vermont – March 8, 2018 – Soil4Climate today proudly welcomed to its Advisory Board Elaine Ingham, Ph.D., a globally recognized soil microbiologist, and Charlotte Kahn, a well-known leader in the fields of social innovation and philanthropy. Ingham and Kahn join more than 30 other distinguished members of the Soil4Climate Advisory Board, comprised of individuals with expertise in disciplines including climate science, agricultural research, farming, policymaking, journalism, and environmental activism.
February 22, 2018 – MEDFORD, Massachusetts – Vice President Al Gore recently spoke with two Soil4Climate representatives at a reception at Tufts University. At the February 7th event, William “Bill” Moomaw, Tufts University professor and Soil4Climate Advisory Board member, and Josephine “Josie” Watson, Tufts senior and Soil4Climate Student Representative, presented to Gore a packet containing information on Soil4Climate as well as articles and research pertaining to soil as a climate solution.
Soil4Climate is fundraising to ensure food and water security on Maasai lands in Kenya. The project will help bring a borehole and regenerative, holistic planned grazing to the Enkutoto Nalala village in the Kajiado district of Kenya. This is also a climate solution, as improved grazing builds soil carbon.Your contribution will make an impact, whether you donate $5 or $500. Every little bit helps. Thank you for your support. I’ve included information about Soil4Climate below.
On World Soil Day, Soil4Climate and Maasai Center for Regenerative Pastoralism Launch Land Restoration Project
On World Soil Day, Soil4Climate and Maasai Center for Regenerative Pastoralism Launch Land Restoration Project
Planned Grazing to Provide Food, Water, Climate Benefits
December 5, 2017 – NAROK, Kenya – Soil4Climate and the Maasai Center for Regenerative Pastoralism today announced the launch of a joint initiative, the Maasai Lands Restoration Project. This venture seeks to improve degraded soils on Maasai-owned land in Kajiado County, Kenya, to provide permanent solutions to the challenges of drought, desertification, and food and water security, chronically plaguing the region. In addition, improving the land will sequester carbon, helping to reverse climate change.
Regenerative grazing of livestock will be utilized to improve the land and to increase the abundance of grass, allowing the herd size to grow. As the project proceeds, permaculture practices and other eco-agricultural innovations will be integrated into the land management.
“We are excited about this project because restoring our soil means restoring the lives of our people. Improving the land is the most important thing we can do for our Maasai community and future generations,” stated Dalmas Tiampati, Founder and Executive Director of the Maasai Center for Regenerative Pastoralism.
“It is an honor to participate in a hopeful venture that seeks to preserve a noble and proud culture facing tremendous stress from environmental devastation. Our work will show well-managed grazing can improve and strengthen a community, and provide abundant food and water while combatting global warming,” said Seth Itzkan, Co-Founder of Soil4Climate.
Other partners on this effort include the Mara Training Centre in Kenya, offering training in holistic management of land and livestock, and the Department of Land Resource Management and Agricultural Technology (LARMAT) at the University of Nairobi, providing ecological monitoring of soil carbon and range vegetation. Marking the formal start of this project, seven community leaders from the Enkutoto Nalala village in Kenya gathered today at the Mara Training Centre in Narok, Kenya, to begin training in holistic land and livestock management.
The Maasai Center for Regenerative Pastoralism, a Kenya-based nonprofit, works with Maasai pastoralists to implement regenerative land management practices. The Mara Training Center, in the northern Mara region of Kenya, is a Savory Institute Hub working to enhance the area’s plant and animal life, and increase its economic viability. The University of Nairobi Department of LARMAT offers degrees in range management and provides research activities in support of sustainable rangeland management and pastoralism. LARMAT is partnering with the Mara Training Centre to providing experiential learning to university graduates. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization has designated December 5th as World Soil Day.
Fundraising for the first phase of this effort, including drilling of a borehole and the initial training, is being coordinated by a collaboration among NorthernDawn Consulting LLC, Sustainable Partnerships LLC, and graduate students in the Masters in Environmental Management program at Western State Colorado University.
Soil4Climate Inc., a U.S.-based nonprofit, nongovernmental organization, advocates for regenerative cropping and grazing practices to improve soil fertility, increase the bionutrient density of food, restore wildlife habitat, prevent flooding, return flow to dried-up rivers, and revitalize pastoral communities while sequestering atmospheric carbon. Join the 7,000+ scientists, farmers, policymakers, journalists, and concerned global citizens of Soil4Climate at facebook.com/groups/Soil4Climate.
Media contact: Karl Thidemann
August 2, 2017 – THETFORD, Vermont – Soil4Climate today announced the addition of four members to its Advisory Board: Tom Crowther, Ph.D., of ETH Zurich (the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology), Dan Kittredge, founder of the Bionutrient Food Association, Fred Provenza, Ph.D., of Utah State University, and Mark Gottlieb, Esq., executive director of the Public Health Advocacy Institute at Northeastern University. The four new members bring to the Soil4Climate Advisory Board knowledge and experience from fields relevant to soil carbon sequestration, including soil science, grazing management, nutrition, and public health. A full listing of Advisory Board members is at soil4climate.org/advisoryboard.
“I am pleased to join this distinguished roster of climate scientists, farmers, journalists, impact investors, activists, and others who share a passion for improving soil health and reversing climate change. The increasingly clear, nutritional link between soil health and human health is one of many reasons why returning carbon to soil is crucial,” said Kittredge.
Seth Itzkan, co-founder and co-director of Soil4Climate, commented, “We are honored and delighted to welcome these extraordinary individuals to the Soil4Climate Advisory Board. Their expertise and insight will be invaluable as Soil4Climate grows its presence domestically and internationally.”
Soil4Climate advocates for regenerative cropping and grazing practices to heal land, improve soil fertility, restore wildlife habitat, prevent flooding, return flow to dried-up rivers, and revitalize rural communities while sequestering atmospheric carbon. Join the 5,700+ scientists, farmers, policymakers, journalists, and concerned global citizens of Soil4Climate at facebook.com/groups/Soil4Climate.
Healing Land to Restore Soil, Preserve Culture, Reverse Warming
THETFORD, Vermont — August 6, 2016 — Soil4Climate is pleased to announce a partnership with Ildalalekutuk Maasai Action for Development (IMAD), a Kenyan grassroots organization. Through this partnership, the two groups agree to collaborate on research and outreach to empower the Maasai people in Kajiado Central district of Kenya to manage their land to improve soil health and capture atmospheric carbon.
IMAD is also establishing a chapter of Soil4Climate, Soil4Climate-Kenya, to connect members of the local community who wish to learn together about soil as a climate solution and to participate in this ambitious ecological restoration effort.
Dalmas Tiampati, founder and director of IMAD, stated, “The Maasai are a proud herding people whose way of life is threatened by desertification and climate change. We are pleased to work with Soil4Climate to spread awareness of how the Maasai people can preserve our culture while being leaders in the global effort to restore savanna grasslands and reverse global warming.”
Seth Itzkan, co-founder of Soil4Climate, said, “This cooperative relationship with IMAD presents a wonderful and exciting opportunity to further our mission of advocating for soil carbon sequestration. As indigenous livestock herders managing their animals in ways that enhance food security and help to reverse global warming, the Maasai people can be recognized as climate heroes.”
IMAD was created to lead community-based efforts to identify viable long-term solutions to chronic problems of water scarcity, food insecurity, climate change, soil degradation, severe drought, and massive loss of livestock in order to foster sustainable livelihoods. Its vision is to promote a self-reliant, socially-just, environmentally-conscious, and prosperous Maasai society.
Soil4Climate advocates for regenerative cropping and grazing practices to heal land, improve soil fertility, prevent flooding, return flow to dried-up rivers, restore wildlife habitat, and revitalize rural economies while sequestering excess atmospheric carbon. Membership in the Soil4Climate Facebook group includes ~2700 scientists, farmers, policymakers, journalists, and concerned global citizens. Dalmas Tiampati serves on the Soil4Climate Advisory Board.
Ildalalekutuk Maasai Action for Development
Chorale Performance of Soil4Climate Anthem “Brand New Sky”
THETFORD, Vermont — August 1, 2016 — Highlighting the talents of the multigenerational Family Folk Chorale and the songwriting skills of Cambridge-based musician, Kevin O’Connor, Soil4Climate today released the video and choral arrangements for its anthem “Brand New Sky,” and is encouraging other musicians and choral directors to add the song to their repertoires.
On June 18, 2016, “Brand New Sky,” extolling soil as a climate solution, was first performed in a choral arrangement in front of a live audience at Piccadilly Farms in Winchester, New Hampshire.
“Our song ‘Brand New Sky’ brings the hopeful message about soil to the climate movement,” said Seth Itzkan, co-founder of Soil4Climate and contributor to the song. He continued, “One of the lines from the song, ‘Where there was once nothing to see, now there is life all around me,’ refers to my observation of ecological restoration in Africa. When we heal the land, we heal the climate.
Chris Eastburn, who, as artistic director for the Family Folk Chorale, created the choral arrangement for “Brand New Sky,” commented, “It’s a song that’s poignant and meaningful right now especially in terms of building consciousness around climate change and looking for climate solutions… The song speaks of something very important. It’s nice to bring a whole host of voices to that from across the generations.”
Gwendolyn Atwood, a singer as well as a parent of a child singer in the Family Folk Chorale, observed, “I really loved the experience of … looking over at the kids and seeing them knowing that they’re part of something, and that their optimism and hopefulness is well placed… If we get ourselves in synchrony and harmony with each other and with all the microbiology in the soil, we can actually fly right through [global warming].”
Alison Houghton, another singer with the Family Folk Chorale, noted, “This song has a huge capacity for hope and … the lyrics are catchy. We can use more songs that bring hope into various places, and this song definitely does that.”
Cambridge-based musician Kevin O’Connor, principal song composer remarked, “It was a rewarding experience to express in music an important issue. I hope this song inspires people to take up the challenge.”
A video of the June 18th Family Folk Chorale performance
A video of children from the Creative Minds after school program in White River Junction, Vermont, singing the song at an Earth Day rally
A studio recording sung by Boston-area musician Leigh Meunier
An instrumental-only version
Sheet Music for Choral
Lyrics and chords-only are available
Information on the Family Folk Chorale
Information on singer, songwriter Kevin O’Connor
Soil4Climate is a Vermont-based nonprofit advocating for soil as a climate solution. Information can be found at soil4climate.org. Join its Facebook group atfacebook.com/groups/soil4climate.
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“Soil and Survival” Boston Forum Videos Released
Soil’s Role as Climate Solution Highlighted
THETFORD, Vermont — May 19, 2016 — Soil4Climate today announced videos of its recent first-of-a-kind forum uniting leaders in the movement to cut fossil fuel emissions with climate activists promoting the role of soil to help reverse global warming, “Soil and Survival: Soil Restoration to Help Reverse Climate Change,” are now available at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLiUvc4BbU6pzycJWYa65-rvJscobQuAhh
This event, hosted by the Jamaica Plain Forum on April 28th, featured talks by Seth Itzkan, cofounder of Soil4Climate, Quinton Zondervan, president of the Climate Action Business Association (CABA), Kannan Thiruvengadam, manager of “Eastie Farm,” a permaculture-based community farm in East Boston, and Dr. Jean-Jacques Yarmoff, attaché for science and technology in the Consulate General of France in Boston.
Seth Itzkan spoke on the enormous potential to capture atmospheric carbon through reforestation and improved methods of cropping and grazing. “There is hope for the future. As we transition from fossil fuels, we can also, through the action of plants and trees, safely remove heat-trapping carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and draw it into soil, where it benefits people and the environment.”
Quinton Zondervan stated that there are three pillars to the climate movement: “The first is mitigation, the second is adaptation, and the third, but not least, is sequestration.” Zondervan continued, “We don’t have any technology that can pull down the quantity of carbon dioxide that we’ve put up there, other than through restoring nature.”
Kannan Thiruvengadam addressed the need to bring farming practices and soil awareness into urban areas. The fact that we can help reverse global warming by building soil is “great news,” said Thiruvengadam, continuing, “It’s something we can all get into.”
Dr. Jean-Jacques Yarmoff discussed France’s “4 per 1000” initiative, the first state-sponsored program calling on nations to increase soil carbon. “‘4 per 1000’ is a type of action that brings together two very important goals: increasing food security and trying to sequester some of the [atmospheric] carbon into the soil. This will help mitigate the effects of climate change.”
This event was cosponsored by CABA and by 350 Massachusetts for a Better Future, an affiliate of the international 350.org climate activist movement. According to 350 Massachusetts senior advisor, Craig Altemose, this was the first time his organization co-sponsored an event promoting the role of soil. “As climate impacts get increasingly worrisome, we need to find safe, responsible ways to pull carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. We were very happy to call attention to this important topic,” said Altemose.
Commenting on the program, Chuck Collins, founder of the Jamaica Plain Forum, said, ”The Jamaica Plain Forum series, with its tradition of leadership in organizing community-based conversations on the great issues shaping our neighborhood and planet, was pleased to host an event focused on soil carbon sequestration as an essential component of an overall climate mitigation strategy. Attendees were hungry for this information and I sensed a tremendous spark of learning.” The Jamaica Plain Forum is a free public speaker, workshop, and film series bringing together neighbors, scholars, and organizers around issues of peace, justice, the environment and civic engagement.
Karl Thidemann, cofounder of Soil4Climate, closed the event with a recitation of his poem, “Climate Farming”:
By Karl Thidemann
So, what’s the future?
Is there no hope?
Healing the land
Can help us cope
And grow better food
With less flooding, too
Put carbon in soil
Is what we must do
Draw down the heat
Slow the sea rise
Let birds and bees
Thrive in the skies
Good farming is how
We deal with this mess
Now the climate’s fixed
What’s next to address?
Video services for this event were generously provided by Werner Grundl and Julie O’Neil of Videosphere, a video documentary company based in Cambridge, Mass. https://www.youtube.com/videosphere
Soil4Climate advocates for soil carbon drawdown as a climate mitigation solution. It promotes ecological restoration of all biomes as well as the implementation of innovative cropping and grazing practices to heal land, improve soil fertility, return flow to dried-up rivers, prevent flooding, restore wildlife habitat, and revitalize rural economies while sequestering excess atmospheric carbon.
Soil4Climate and Tufts Global Development and Environment Institute Release Earth Day Climate Policy Brief – Emphasize Soil
THETFORD, Vermont — April 22, 2016 — Soil4Climate today announced that an Earth Day climate policy brief prepared jointly with the Tufts University Global Development and Environment Institute (GDAE), has been released.
To summarize, the policy brief states that cutting fossil fuel emissions, on its own, will not suffice to meet the temperature goals set by the agreement reached during the Paris climate negotiations in December 2015, to be signed today by participating nations in New York. In addition to decreased emissions, active removal, or drawdown, of excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, through the implementation of innovative agricultural practices, will also be required.
As noted in the policy brief, “While reducing energy and industrial emissions of heat-trapping gases is essential, reducing emissions from forests, grasslands, wetlands, and soils, and enhancing their capacity to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, offers a crucial pathway for success in meeting the Paris temperature goals.”
Seth Itzkan, cofounder of Soil4Climate and contributor to the brief, said, “Soil4Climate is pleased to have collaborated with the team at the Tufts University Global Development and Environment Institute on this climate policy brief. Expanding awareness of soil as a climate solution is core to our mission.”
The GDAE/Soil4Climate policy brief is available at http://www.ase.tufts.edu/gdae/Pubs/climate/ClimatePolicyBrief3.pdf.
The GDAE homepage is at http://www.ase.tufts.edu/gdae/.
Join the Soil4Climate Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/Soil4Climate/.