>> Saturday, October 2, 2010
This is a guest post by Kori Bubnack and it addresses the reduction of biodiversity that has been speedily occurring in our crop production over the last century. I am always amazed at the variety of heirloom seeds available and it is really fun to grow some unfamiliar varieties of vegetables to add something new to your table.
Promoting Localized Farming and Sustainability Through Conservation
“In other environmental issues we tell people to stop something, reduce their impact,
reduce their damage,” states US Ecologist Gary Nabhan in a recent interview. Nabhan
is a ethnobotanist/gardener whose promotion of biodiversity has caught the attention
of many over the years. He is known for his work in biodiversity as an ethnobotanist.
Since Coming Home to Eat was published in 2001, the local food movement has ignited, causing a worldwide green epidemic.
There has been a dramatic rise over the past few years in the number of organizations and businesses that have contributed to the promotion of sustainability through conservation. The Earth Day Network has been playing a large part in bringing conservationist and green enthusiasts together, sharing ideas and discussing new ways to support the planet. Other large organizations and non-profits like Doug Band and the CGI (Clinton Global Initiative) have been working on successful emission reduction projects in the San Francisco Bay area.While climate control has continued to worsen, collaborative and individual acts are vitalfor any successful green campaign. As human beings, we’re constantly told to reduce our carbon footprint, consume less unhealthy foods, and spend less time in the shower! But let’s take a minute to step back and look at this from a different perspective; one that Gary Nabhan strongly suggests.
According to The United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization-
Only about a quarter of crop diversity is left and that a dozen species now gives 90% of the animal protein eaten globally. In accordance, just 4 crop species supply half of plant based calories in the human diet.
Eating foods that are home-grown, Nabhan suggests, will have a greater impact on sustainability for our planet as a whole. Otherwise known as “eat what you conserve,” is a well-established theory in that by eating the fruits and vegetables that we are attempting to conserve/save, we’re promoting the granular dissemination of various plant species.
Agriculturist Marco Contiero also mentions that “biodiversity is an essential characteristicof any sustainable agricultural system, especially in the context of climate change.”According to Conterio’s theory, this would suggest that as individuals we tend our own crops/ plants, and should make sure to purchase localized farm products at supermarkets and groceries. In the end, this condenses export/import reliance, thus reducing our carbon footprint.
Both theories rely profoundly on an action oriented approach of conservation and
sustainability. With an abundance of green movements following Earth Day 2010,
organizations and individuals have taken a stronger following to expert opinions like the ones demonstrated by both of these highly influential agriculturalists.
What can you do to help preserve crop biodiversity of our food crops?
Be sure to visit your local farmers marketing to purchase your fresh fruits and vegetables. As eco-conscious individuals, don’t hesitate to stop the next time you drive by a yard stand with fresh crops. Promoting biodiversity and localized farming is a crucial piece of the conservation puzzle.
About the author, Kori Bubnack:
I'm a political science graduate and currently attending grad school. After taking a few different classes in undergrad on environmental issues and how they relate to politics I sort of feel in love with the subject. I recently came across the mommy blogging network and realized how many moms are out there that have an interest in this too. I decided I wanted to start reaching out to them because they can really make a difference.
Here are my little ones showing off all the diversity of pumpkins at at the Nashville Farmer's Market.
You may also like to read 15 Easy Ways to Go Green and Save Money.