PDC Reading; weekend 2/6 P3 Yields



Suggested Reading:

Topics and key points included:

  • Changing soil composition to change the community
  • Water and the hydrological cycle
  • Unique properties of water that allow life to exist
  • Water capture and storage, e.g. rainfall collection, dams, etc.
  • Soil and living plants are the best ways of storing water
  • Water held as high as possible in the landscape, as pumping water to a higher level requires energy
  • Slowing the flow of water to prevent soil erosion
  • A key point is that the soil must be kept covered to reduce/prevent water run-off and evaporation
  • Contouring of the land to prevent water running straight downhill
  • Swales on contours are a key strategy for holding onto water in dry landscapes
  • Efficiency of water use is very important, e.g. irrigation systems
  • Evapotranspiration – rates affected by temperature, wind and humidity
  • Hydro-power
  • Potato blight & the Irish famine, is an example of problems caused by monoculture crops
  • Monocultures
  • Agricultural chemicals
  • GMO’s – Genetically Modified Organisms
  • Seed saving and genomic patents
  • A keypoint is that we need polycultures, not monocultures
  • Mechanisation of agriculture and reduction in human labour
  • A keypoint is that small-scale local agriculture is more productive, enabling greater food security

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