Re: High School Senior's Tool To End Food Insecurity Wins National Competition : NPR #news
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Don't know about prediction, but my question is: Why wait?
My inclination would be to go in everywhere possible to teach farmers about biochar and get as many as possible of them making and using the stuff. We all talk about 10t/ha, but in the developing world, my work has found that 2.5 will have amazing results. That is about tops for what most farmers can manage in any reasonable amount of time, too. if they could be convinced to stay at it, they might be able to get to 10t/ha in a decade. The water retention results could have major beneficial effects in terms of food security. It would not save crops, but might save enough to avoid crop failure and starvation.
This is a cool project, but I think less critical to farmers than to relief agencies and governments that could use an extra month or so to gear up for the necessary relief effort. For farmers, there is no running away. Drought, no drought. What the hell are they supposed to do with a warning like this? Biochar can help and in bulk a lot, but it takes time and effort to make and get in the ground. It and virtually all farm level food security projects need to be planned and executed before the shit hits the fan, And here's the problem. No one thinks about these people until they are dying, whether in feeding camps or the beaches of Europe.
If we are going to do anything about the rural poor, we have to be willing to start early and engage in projects that will make a difference - and then probably only at the margin - only the next time a severe drought strikes. These sorts of things are not popular under the best of circumstances and the USG has made them anathema now.
On Sat, Aug 1, 2020 at 12:24 PM Kim Chaffee <kim.chaffee2@...> wrote:
This young woman’s invention uses satellite imagery to predict at the beginning of a growing season how the crop will turn out. Might this help farmers predict how biochar will improve their crop yields?