Desertification and land damage

The surprising truth about this worldwide problem that affects even "healthy" landscapes.

Index of articles and links

In spite of billions spent to halt desertification, deserts are now spreading faster that any time in human history. Subtler land damage problems such as erosion, loss of biodiversity and landscape productivity, flooding, and droughts affect virtually every person on earth.

Desertification: what it is and how to fix it

Why conventional "solutions" fail to reverse desertification; proven methods that work.

Index of articles and links

Desertification is the process by which formerly productive land (grasslands, savannas, forests, and farmland) becomes desert.

Grazing and overgrazing

Index of articles and links

Conventional wisdom says grazing damages land -- yet the same land a few cattle or sheep damage today often supported thousands or millions of wild grazers less than 200 years ago.

Kachana Pastoral Co.

How to heal damaged land

Index of articles and links

Grasslands and grazers evolved together in the world's seasonally dry and arid (brittle) environments. Healing this land usually involves managing livestock to perform the ecosystem functions once performed by wild animals. This works even on severely damaged and eroded land, and in places where no topsoil remains.

Revegetating soilless land

Index of articles and links

Even land that has lost all its soil -- or where no soil ever existed -- can be revegetated. Using the method shown, up to a foot of soil can be created in three years, even in arid areas.

Thomas J. Elpel

The last battle

NOTE: At the Yakima meeting of the WSU/Kellogg project in January 1997, Allan Savory gave the keynote speech from which the following is excerpted.

I see you--holistic management practitioners--as the leaders in the last battle mankind will ever face. I think the greatest battle is this battle to live within the means of our environment and live in harmony with our environment.

Our human way of making decisions, I am afraid, has not left a good track record. We're all in this together, and we've got to find out.

The new agriculture

The following keynote speech was presented at The Agriculture Vision 2000 Conference--Sustaining the Agricultural Community in the New Millennium on January 11, 2000 in Great Bend, Kansas. Allan Savory is the founder of the Center for Holistic Management in Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA.

Thank you for the opportunity to talk to you this evening about a matter of profound importance for the survival of humanity.

Animal impact: how trampling and disturbance benefit grassland ecosystems

Grasslands and dryland ecosystems are adapted to, and dependent upon, disturbances such as grazing and trampling.

A Short History of the West African Pilot Pastoral Program 1993 - 2002

Biodiversity: where's the beef?

This article first appeared in the Puget Consumer's Coop Sound Consumer.

In a designated wilderness, I met a hiker on the trail. Horseback, I was the natural target of his wrath at seeing a couple of cowpies back down the trail. The sight had ruined his experience of the landscape. From what he had read, and from camping once on an overgrazed streambank, he knew that cows were bad.

The grandfather of the man who owned the cattle had killed the last wolf in the county. He knew that wolves were bad.

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