Climate change

Direct drilling will yield as good as any other system of cultivation, sometimes more. But only if it is understood as a system. Understand the drill itself.

I have been doing a significant amount of research recently, into climate change and its effects on all of us, but farming in particular. Firstly, the rate of change really does appear to the scientists involved to be picking up speed – still slow but beginning to speed up. The next ten years will be critical.  The love affair with the car is the worst offender in producing CO2, then aircraft, but there does appear to be a growing lobby seeing farming as one of the bad bogey men.  The culprits are methane (from ruminants) and CO2 from diesel engines and the production of mineral fertilisers (one tonne of N nutrient made in a modern, efficient USA factory takes 21,000 kWh to manufacture and deliver).

Yet more reasons to go direct frilling.  However, do not think it is an easy way out, there is just as much husbandry in direct drilling as in 4 or 5 passes of conventional cultivations. Particularly watch compaction in previous operations.

Bill Butterworth   Land Research Ltd, 7 February ‘19


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