Carbon Farming: An Awesome Plan To Reverse The Californian Drought!

Kiss The Ground is an organization fighting for the restoration of soil worldwide, and specifically in California in the wake of the devastating drought. They help farmers and communities build back healthy soil through policy and consumer awareness.

Ryland Englehart, co-founder of Kiss The Ground, has made an educational video called The Soil Story, with an introduction from Incubus’s Brandon Boyd. In it, he explains how there is a way to fight climate change and reverse the effects of dangerous carbon emissions in the atmosphere- by transferring them to the ground, which uses carbon to build healthy, nutrient-rich soil. How?

We all know that there is way too much carbon in the atmosphere, but as Englehart points out: “Carbon is not our enemy, it’s the building block of life. Everything is made of it. The problem and the solution are just a matter of balance.” When carbon from the ground is extracted, this delicate balance is upset. Burning fossil fuels not only pollutes the environment and causes the ‘greenhouse effect’, it is also responsible for ocean acidification, which is accelerating the mass extinction of sea life. Carbon in our atmosphere is dangerous- but carbon in our soil is great!

Plants perform photosynthesis by absorbing carbon from the atmosphere, turning it into carbohydrates and sugars. They pump those sugars down through the roots, and the carbon is used to build soil. Scientists have discovered that by adding a layer of compost, plants can absorb much more carbon.

“This is carbon farming. This is regenerative agriculture,” explains Englehart. “It makes healthy, nutrient rich soil that holds more water.” Along with methods such as planned grazing, tree planting and cover crops, carbon farming could help reduce global warming. But in California the situation is urgent. Kiss The Ground need your help!

If you support this idea, please consider signing and sharing Kiss The Ground’s petition. The goal is to raise awareness and collect 20,000 signatures for a petition urging legislators to allocate $160M from California’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund to build back healthy soils. These funds would go to regenerative agriculture, completion of new state compost facilities, and other land management practices that sequester carbon, help us fight the drought, and create sustainable food systems.

Specifically, there are currently three important proposals to support:

  • $20 million to Governor Brown’s Healthy Soil Initiative, including funding for Carbon Farming in Assembly Member Levine’s AB 761 (details)
  • $65 million to Senator Wolk’s Bill SB 367 (Agriculture Climate Benefits Act) for regenerative agriculture, including $25 million for on-farm projects that build soil and $40 million to permanent farmland easements and practices that reduce and sequester carbon. (details)
  • $75 million to fund CalRecycle’s composting and recycling efforts, helping California build the 100 new composting facilities that will be necessary to recover our organic waste, as was proposed in the Assembly’s budget recommendations.

You can also share your personal story with the team at Kiss The Ground, or send a personal letter or email to your senator by clicking here.

This article (Carbon Farming: An Awesome Plan To Reverse The Californian Drought!) is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to the author and

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