Regenerative Agriculture: Merging Farming and Natural Resource Conservation Profitably

Little work has focused on the relative costs and benefits of novel regenerative farming operations, which necessitates studying in situ, farmer-defined best management practices. Here, we evaluate the relative effects of regenerative and conventional corn production systems on pest management services, soil conservation, and farmer profitability and productivity throughout the Northern Plains of the United States.

Environmentally Friendly Cattle Production (Really)

When cattle congregate, they’re often cast as the poster animals for overgrazing, water pollution and an unsustainable industry. While some of the criticism is warranted, cattle production — even allowing herds to roam through grasslands and orchards — can be beneficial to the environment as well as sustainable.

In Ethiopia’s Wheat Diversity, the Seeds of a Wheat Rust Solution

Today, in order to combat Ug99 and other pathogens, Ethiopian breeders take advantage of diverse genes. The old varieties are an important source for new genes, because genes can’t be produced from scratch. In a constantly changing world, where pathogens adapt and other environmental conditions keep changing, a diverse gene pool for breeders to draw from is often the best insurance for the future.

Why Healthy Humans and Ecosystems Need Healthy Soil

The project Agricultural Production in Recovered Areas After Coal Mining in Brazil assesses whether land that has been degraded by coal mining in southern Brazil is suitable for the production of safe and nutritious food. Their ongoing research at the Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil, uses plant microorganisms and soil microbes to monitor and aid the recovery of degraded lands.

Turning Appalachia’s Mountaintop Coal Mines Into Farms

Refresh Appalachia is a social enterprise that partners with Reclaim Appalachia to convert post-mine lands into productive and profitable agriculture and forestry enterprises that could be scaled up to put significant numbers of people in layoff-riddled Appalachia back to work. When Refresh Appalachia launched in 2015, West Virginia had the lowest workforce participation rate in the nation.