129 Madeira Consorcio Meeting 23.7.2022

Jul 25, 2022 at 11:14 am | Posted in Posts | Leave a comment

We met in the Gallery again, with a small group. We had a lively discussion about “regenesis”

Here are the videos we saw:

https://youtu.be/az3DmKZK6JI  and Monbiot: Farming is destructive https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOQGTViNgsM  

(We also have

https://www.ted.com/talks/george_monbiot_for_more_wonder_rewild_the_world?language=pt )

The notes:

We saw a short film made with George Monbiot, author or “Regenesis” and the second talk, an interview with him. He says that we have to stop farming, even organic farming and animal-friendly farming (free range cows and chickens): Even these types of animal farming have too much of a negative impact on the environment,

Monbiot is promoting the creation of food on the basis of micro-organisms, which is being developed in a lab in Finland.

M.J, said that such “food” production could be as harmful as genetic engineering, leading to all kinds of unforeseen negative consequences for human life later.

He says that we should find means to re-nature the soil in say, in the Sahara, which has plenty of space. In deserts, soil recuperation could now much more useful and we could continue with farming here.

Monbiot also said that perennial farming should be used in the future. This would meet with strong opposition from companies like Monsanto which are trying to get Indian farmers and others to buy their gene-manipulated one-time seed.

S. said that population control should be implemented to avoid having 10 Billion people on the planet in the future. Cl. said we cannot stop population growth; S. said that education in third world countries needs to change behaviour.

Cl. spoke about vertical agriculture which should be the future, saving space and fertilizer. It can be done anywhere but it needs a lot of energy.

U. said that soil depletion can be reversed it is a slow process but even “useless” soil can be regenerated to have new use of the land. Monbiot spoke of a farmer in the UK who does this and now successfully farms on former barren land.

S. said that we humans should cut down pollution and plastic, this would be a first essential step out of the crisis. The Pandemic has shown that we can control our behaviour when needed. We have to be pro-active.

The question is what kind of replacements for us (carnivores and herbivores) micro-organisms can produce.  Microorganisms can produce pancakes, so hopefully we will not end up with food in form of pills. But allergies and cancer might be a potential result.

S. and M.l J said that we would lose a part of joy in life if we couldn’t have a good piece of meat once in a while. M. J said that changing a diet which has been in place for hundreds of years, cannot be done easily. Food gives pleasure and food security is important for humans. Chicken is a very common food also in Asia, it cannot be taken off the menu just like that.

Cl. said that meat once per week would be ok. (King Henri IV said that every French family should have a chicken in the pot on Sundays).

When Coca-Cola was introduced into the beverage market, no-one had a clue about the drink; with good marketing, it was accepted all over the world. So, a new way of eating could be accepted as well.

Portugal will have 10 heat waves I per year as of 2070. Already, people are beginning to see that things have to change drastically to avoid a human catastrophe.

S. said that nature doesn’t need us, it will survive without us.

U. has an old article that said that phosphor will run out, essential for fertilizer products. Companies need to find other alternatives and with human ingenuity, they probably will.

The Amazon is still being depleted, also through soy production which is just as bad as traditional farming.

We need a solution quickly, we cannot wait much longer. Monbiot says that cutting out farming would have the biggest positive impact on the climate. Methane from cows is the worst polluter.

The farmers’ lobby is strong, especially in Germany, they don’t get at all.

Monbiot says that if 25% of the population changed their eating habits to the new food products, the rest of the population would follow but that is only an assumption.

People can learn and adapt: we have electric cars, next might be floating cars; we would adopt to that as well.

Europe and the US should be the forerunners and set a good example for Third World countries; we should set aside or reduce meat consumption, then Third World countries would also adopt this attitude.  

China and India are not the biggest polluters, it’s still the US and Europe but they are increasing in pollution quickly.

New York city boasts air conditions units in every apartment, very costly. If entire buildings were equipped with a joint system for all apartments, energy consumption would go down. But the installation of such common systems would be complicated and costly.

The future will not be easy.

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