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We’re Running Out of Time to Reverse Desertification

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

Story at-a-glance -

  • The conversion of large amounts of fertile land to desert has long been thought to be caused by livestock, such as sheep and cattle overgrazing and giving off methane. This has now been shown to be incorrect, as removing animals to protect lands speeds up desertification
  • According to Allan Savory, an African ecologist, dramatically increasing the number of grazing livestock is the only thing that can reverse both desertification and climate change
  • Concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) and large-scale monocrop farms directly contribute to climate change and environmental pollution
  • To improve soil quality, we must improve its ability to maintain water. Once land has turned to bone-dry desert, any rain simply evaporates and/or runs off. The solution is twofold: The ground must be covered with vegetation, and animals must roam across the land
  • In the documentary, “Running Out of Time,” Savory details his holistic herd and land management plan, and shows how land that has turned to desert can be brought back to become fertile and productive once again through the use of livestock

The Savory Institute documentary “Running Out of Time,” features ecologist and international consultant Allan Savory, who in a 2013 TED Talk discussed how grazing livestock is the solution to our ever-growing climate change problem. Born and raised in Zimbabwe, Savory is a passionate conservationist.

He founded the Africa Centre for Holistic Management (ACHM) in 1992, to support the adoption of holistic land management practices in Southern Africa in order to reduce and reverse land degradation that threatens the very survival of mankind, as without healthy productive soil, we cannot grow food. Central teachings taught by ACHM include how to:


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