Life on the land in Australia



On the farm

Carbon8 is currently being used by farmers and graziers to grow:

  • Tomatoes
  • Lettuce
  • Rhubarb
  • Melons
  • Grain
  • Grazing Grasses
  • Roses
  • Annuals

Australian farmers and graziers have been feeding Australians and the world for a very long time. There was a time when it was said “Australia ran off the sheeps back”.

Over the last 100 years trends have changed and other primary producers have stepped up to be counted as well. With changing trends in the economy and export and import developments due to those trends, Australian Farmers have diversified into many food product industries vital to the economic health of our country and our population.

Australia is one of the few countries that do not have food shortages.

Despite drought, cyclones, floods, introduced pests and international competition, Australian farmers have battled on, and on and yet again on.

With the economical and physical call for more and more food available on the market, our cropping and grazing lands have been stripped of the life giving vitality called soil carbon causing more and more expensive chemical and synthetic intervention to maintain production levels and in doing so make a reasonable living.

Clearly working on a two or three generation knowledge base is not working because the tri-generational information was not based on maintaining soil carbon levels while the demand of production increased. Additionally, water or the lack of it has played an equally challenging part in determining the success of our primary producers.

It is reported by the scientific community that increasing our soil carbon levels is vital for the future of our primary industries and a 1% increase can and will make a world of diffence, not only to soil productivity but also water availability.

The greater the moisture content in the soil due to soil carbons, the greater the available evaporation, turning to condensation release which is commonly known as rain.

There are several ways a landowner can increase soil carbon. In the longterm soil carbon is negatively affected by the following key activities:

  • Soil disruption (ploughing)
  • Lack of breakdown matter (compost effect)
  • Wind disturbance (High winds drying the soil out)
  • Soil loss (erosion)
  • Irregular rain patterns (Drought then flood causing erosion)

On the farm

To turn back the hands of time primary producers are faced with the need for change. And change is never easy.

Here is a simple way to view the problem. A good backyard vegie gardener will prepare their plot by turning over the soil in their garden space, adding large amounts of manure, compost, a little post ash and possibly straw or grass cuttings to cover the soil and start the breakdown process.

The gardener will then water well and when the composting breakdown process has done its job the gardener will turn the soil mixing the rich fibourous material through. This gives the soil substance. Now the plot is ready for planting.

Needless to say primary producers can’t do this as it is not financially viable so a crop farmer will plough the soil and add fertilizer, usually in a pelleted form to change the nutrient levels in the soil. This artifically feeds the plants but doesn’t fortify the soil. It’s like feeding slaves minimum sustenance in order to get a level of work out of them but not enough to keep them healthy.

The result of this action is the slave has a shorter lifespan and never reaches full potential therefore never delivers maximum production. Who would ever want to make a slave out of our life giving soil?

Through the need for survival and a relatively short term focus that is exactly what we have done to Australian soil. Enslaved it.

The exciting news is Australian agriculture can learn from the past and when we say the past we mean the ancient past when demand could be met using available “natural” addatives to the soil.

Terra Preta, Biochar and Charcoal-Carbon is being bandied about in the news and on the internet and undoubtedly hold some valuable keys to longterm sustainability of our soils. The wholistic view of manufactured carbon for soils encompasses much more with emission and alternative fuel/energy sources not least of all.

With the evidence from investigations by the scientific community the balance of power in the production of food and the future of Australian agriculture lay squarely in the hands of the primary producers as custodians and food growers of the land.

Big Responsibility – Even Bigger Opportunity

Key Benefits:

If a crop grower increases the volume of their crops by increasing their soil carbon levels they would benefit in several ways.

1. More money coming in to the farm 2. Preferred produce in the marketplace due to the shelf life, better flavour and colour of Carbon-Foods. 3. One application lasting 1000 yrs or more. 4. Reduce fertilizer costs while increasing production. 5. Less work required to produce more product faster. 6. Increased land values due to soil carbon levels. 7. Lead the world in eco-friendly food production. 8. Play an important role in rural emmissions control.

Carbon 8 Charcoal-Carbon is a product that can assist primary producers in benefiting in these 8 different ways.

Carbon 8

Carbon 8 is Charcoal-Carbon manufactured using ancient techniques. In order to capture the highest level of carbon in our Charcoal, RCRA has modified ancient skills and with the help of modern technology RCRA has developed a Charcoal-Carbon product with a scientifically measured carbon level of 59%.

Due to the density and carbon level of Carbon 8, less product is required per hectre to achieve the best results making Carbon 8 the most cost effective and available product on the market.

Other Options

Many farms and farming communities have source material that can be converted into Charcoal-Carbon. RCRA is keen to assist farmers and communities convert their own source materials into valuable Charcoal-Carbon for local farms saving money and aiding your local community. While not all feed sources will give high carbon levels it is important to consider that local feedstock for Charcoal-Carbon could produce much needed jobs in your community.
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Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha

November 20th, 2010

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