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Why Agricultural Carbon Offsets Can't Play a Role in International Climate Action

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/11/26/why-agricultural-carbon-offsets-cant-play-role-international-climate-action

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Spot on analysis. Reforestation for conservation works, but agriculture is always a tricky gambit if we only think back to the dustbowl days. The world must fight to save the Amazon and other significant rainforests and arboreal resources. Palm oil–shit–short term thinking lines a few pockets and adds a few millimeters to the ocean. Who’s going to notice?

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This is an outrage on multiple levels. i want to comment on one: They are pushing high-input, industrial commodity agriculture as promoting carbon sequestration in soil:

“Some [agricultural carbon sequestration for carbon markets] projects increase farmers’ dependency on agribusiness by requiring them to use proprietary seeds or chemical inputs. This can prevent farmers from using traditional knowledge of fighting pests and fertilizing soils and creates a dependency on the multinational corporations that sell the inputs.”

i wish this article had gone more into detail about this, i’ll have to read the report and follow the links. And it’s good that the author closes with this:

“Governments should invest in policies and programs that incentivize agroecology, without allowing the achieved emission reductions to justify pollution elsewhere.”

But until we break the hold of capital, corporate power and concentrated (looted) wealth on governance, we will be endlessly fighting idiotic schemes like these industry-friendly proposals, and dreams of genuine policies and investments that support human-scale agriculture, ecology-based agriculture, and local and regional markets, will remain dreams.

We need a holistic, whole-system solution to the problems caused by capital, looting, wealth concentration, and the massive industrial assault on ecology. We need to be realistic about dealing with established wealth and power.

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~https://www.iatp.org/carbon-markets-and-agriculture
The IATP contradict everything in the Wall St. Climate Agenda.
Thank you IATP, even though your report will be swept under the rug.

Hiding inside cap and trade is get big or get out, now global.

~https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emissions_trading

~https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earl_Butz#Secretary_of_Agriculture

~https://climate21.org/documents/C21_USDA.pdf
CLIMATE21PROJECT - Transition Memo - Department of Agriculture
(This is official Biden Policy Assessment - I break it down a bit.)
~https://commons.commondreams.org/t/scientists-say-net-zero-by-2050-is-too-late/84308/25 (see my comments in another thread)

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Wouldn’t be surprised if “climate czar” Kerry finds this all just (rotten) peachy.

I need to go back and re-read this article in detail for full understanding.

But, in general, I can’t believe they are considering carbon offsets at this point in time, like that is going to come even close to an adequate solution.

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As with fracking “bridge fuels,” indenturing our vulnerable, desperate & media-disappeared pricariate: Joe will now do almost exactly the opposite of what’s urgently required. Poisioning air, water, our entire food-chain, to bail-out lethal pyramid-schemes. All they’re saying is, we’ve knowingly unleashed the fracked methane kraken, run-away AGW: drought, famine, pestilence, disease and WAR. But we’ll “fix” it for you with golden rice, Bt cotton and stacked trait maize, rendering the planet a poisoned dust bowl, our food quite literally soaked with carcinogens we used to be required to suit up, wear gloves, respirator & eye protection to descale steel with? That, somehow THIS is Lesser of Two Evils… and we fall for it, over and over. That if we expressed ANY concern, KNOWING all of this was coming, we were all somehow RooskiBotBernieBroDeplorables… FOR Trump?

And THIS is just the beginning. They’ve got lots of other friends, we’ll neen to bail out, from our race-to-the-bottom 1099 gigs…

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Hopefully it is clear in this that agriculture has an enormous role to play in this, and that it is the particular carbon offset plan that offers a fig leaf to energy abuse that does not.

The dry weight of most living beings is carbon. Outside of oceans, the vast majority of living tissue is under the soil, not above it.

Either one keeps the garden or one does not.

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“International carbon markets would allow countries struggling to meet their emissions reduction goals to purchase offsets from other countries that cut their emissions more than they pledged.”
Seriously?.. So, the planet is actually, truly dying under our feet… and before our eyes… and yet, we say, " Okay, these people over here, reduced emissions more than they promised, so, 'ey, you can buy those credits and YOU do not have to reduce so damn much, go ahead, you’re good to go."…How is it the powers that be, do not understand that puny little promises are not going to cut it… not much will any more, anyway… it is just plain laughable…

In what world does this make sense??? That is why we will just go down, we are going down, we are finished.

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I sheltered megafire victims and they called me a saint. I asked why mission-critical product development wasn’t getting done and they called me a socialist.

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~https://www.nationofchange.org/2020/11/28/epa-warns-glyphosate-is-likely-to-harm-the-nations-most-endangered-species/

A new study finds that glyphosate is likely to injure or kill 93% of the plants and animals currently listed under the Endangered Species Act.

Nice short article.

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~https://earther.gizmodo.com/feedback-loop-in-central-east-asia-threatens-disturbi-1845761575

A review of weather patterns in inner East Asia over the past 260 years suggests the region is currently caught in a dangerous cycle of heatwaves and droughts that could forever reshape the area, and possibly turn the Mongolian Plateau into an arid wasteland.

There are other warning signs to be aware of. Research from China suggests lakes are dwindling in size across the Mongolian Plateau. Over the past six years, scientists have documented a 26% decrease in the number of lakes larger than 0.4 square miles (1 square kilometer). But as the new research shows, it’s not just the lakes that are losing water—so too is the soil. The changing landscape will wreak havoc on local ecosystems, including large herbivores like wild sheep, antelope, and camels.

Importantly, the climate situation in inner East Asia could influence the climate elsewhere in the Northern Hemisphere, as weather in this part of the world is connected to global atmospheric circulations, according to the press release. Indeed, climate change knows few borders, and its reach is long. Sadly, even the Tibetan Plateau, with its majestic snow capped mountains and sprawling grasslands, is not immune.

…

~https://earther.gizmodo.com/secret-exxon-documents-show-the-firm-may-never-recover-1845755377

The economic fallout of the covid-19 pandemic has hit the oil industry hard, and Exxon in particular is feeling it. Internal documents show the company’s not expecting to make a grand recovery any time soon despite putting on a good face for shareholders.

In typical corporate fashion, workers have seen the worst impacts from the downturn as the company lays off a wide swath of its workforce, while Exxon shareholders have gotten paid hefty sums.

Even as far as energy giants go, Exxon is truly despicable. Troves of evidence show that for decades, it knew that its products were causing dangerous global warming even as it waged a misinformation campaign to keep the public confused. The company has also faced a number of lawsuits for misleading shareholders and climate damages as well, though it has yet to be held accountable in those cases.

In fact, last month, another leaked document showed that Exxon plans to produce an additional 1 million barrels of oil a day over the next seven years, and thereby increase its carbon pollution by 17% by 2025. Some oil wells are falling into complete disrepair, and rather than spending the necessary funds to wind them down safely, some companies have merely left them to spew out planet-warming greenhouse gases. That means that as company’s abandon their projects, the public is suffering the damages and paying the cost of cleanup.

it will likely make even bigger cuts to its workforce—in fact, it’s said it could lay off 15% of its staff, totaling some 14,000 jobs lost.

As long as there is money,
Nothing will change.