On the international World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, on June 17, 2019 the Demeter Association for Biodynamic agriculture calls for a rethinking of agriculture and an effective climate policy. How Biodynamic agriculture can contribute to reclaim desert into fertile land is demonstrated by Demeter through the example of SEKEM.
Since 1977, SEKEM Initiative has cultivated over 680 hectares of desert land by Biodynamic agriculture. A great success in a country that is itself affected by extreme drought, desertification and rising seas. Biodynamic agriculture increases water efficiency by up to 20 percent, the soil sequestrates more carbon and the use of compost makes the recovery of desert soils more sustainable. In 2019, SEKEM launched the Greening the Desert 2019 campaign. 63 hectares further desert land will be reclaimed by using three solar-powered pivot irrigation systems and lots of compost to grow Biodynamic Demeter food. The land reclaimed will cover the food needs of some 2,000 people, and biodynamic soil development and the planting of 10,000 trees will sequestrate more than 975 tons of CO2 per year.
On today’s World Day to Combat Desertification Antje Kölling, political spokeswoman for Demeter, says: “Due to climate change, desertification threatens to take on a dramatic scale. That is why politicians must now quickly adopt effective measures to reduce the emission of climate-damaging gases in all sectors of the economy. However, there is also a need to increase support for approaches in agriculture which, in spite of the already tangible effects of climate change, enable sustainable and robust food production – first and foremost ecological and, above all, Biodynamic agriculture. Because of the targeted humus build-up in the soil and the greater diversity in the crop rotation, they have great potential for climate-friendly and resilient cultivation.” Studies show that Organic farming offers clear advantages over conventional agriculture, for example in the areas of water conservation, soil fertility, biodiversity, climate protection and climate adaptation.