Friday, June 17, 2011

Phosphorus fertilizer buildup - a solution

A headline on the business page in yesterday's Blade:
Algae food found in 30% of Ohio farmland - Phosphorus linked to outbreaks on lake
"Ohio's six state agency directors learned Wednesday that nearly a third of all Buckeye State farmland is believed to contain too much phosphorus, one of many possible reasons for large annual algae outbreaks in western Lake Erie since 1995."

This is another reason to switch to intelligent organic/ecological farming techniques. Phosphorus from commercial chemical fertilizers is rather quickly bound up into in insoluble form that is unavailable to the plants - hence its accumulation in the soil. To release that bound-up phosphorus requires the biological action of soil microorganisms, especially fungi. Chemical farming tends to kill off the soil life, making the soil more vulnerable to erosion and requiring yet more chemical fertilizers, but sophisticated ecological farming methods encourage and support the soil life, making the bound up phosphorus and other minerals, as well as nitrogen from the air, available for plant utilization.

It's time we face the reality of what our commercial farming methods are doing to the environment. Ecological farming that is well done can be just as productive as conventional methods, while producing higher quality, more profitable crops.

Friday, June 10, 2011

How to Save a Trillion Dollars

From The New York Times Opinion Pages
How to Save a Trillion Dollars

Interesting article! Too bad he picks on Ornish as an example of healthy eating. He's headed in the right direction except for his misplaced fat phobia. People are forever misunderstanding the value of natural saturated fats to avoid excess carbs and excess polyunsaturated fats, and spare the essential fatty acids.

I should add that the biggest barrier to sensible healthy eating government policy is the adverse affect it would have on the ag, food, pharm, & medical industries, which have far too much influence on our politicians and bureaucrats. Otherwise why would they continue to promote a low saturated fat ,high carb diet in spite of all the evidence that saturated fat is not bad and limiting carbs can be very helpful.

The unemployed could be put back to work at satisfying and rewarding work raising the high quality food needed on well managed ecological farms, preparing that food for sale, and doing all the 'green' jobs that need doing to rescue our environment from the edge of disaster. And if we didn't have the worry and expense of rampant disease, we could support the arts, education, and other worthy enterprises that get short shrift these days.

Some have commented that ill health is mostly hereditary - this is only slightly true. Unfortunately unhealthy parents pass on their unhealthy habits to their kids. Actually the holistic doctors and naturopaths would be kept busy helping everyone fine tune their health, helping them recover from the ravages of our present junky food and toxic environment. It is the experience of many people who have changed to a healthier diet and lifestyle to overcome one health problem, that other problems are also resolved - health problems are often linked in ways we don't understand. A truly health body resists cancer, supports a healthy heart, healthy blood sugar, healthy blood pressure, healthy digestion, and has a happy disposition.

Don't tell me you can't afford to buy healthy food - you can't afford not to! You can even start to raise some of that food yourself. The higher the quality the less you'll need or want to eat!

There are links to a variety of healthy eating guides on my website. Just remember, people vary - some do better eating more vegetable, others do better eating more meat (with the fat). Refined carbs and omega-6 polyunsaturated fats need to be limited. And the best news is that high quality healthy food is wonderfully tasty!

Happy Eating!