New UN report stuns critics of organic fertilizers

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Those who oppose the principled policy of organic fertilizers replacing chemicals we were used to should read the recent UN report on agricultural subsidies.

A new UN study denounces the agricultural subsidies that are injected into the dairy industry in developed countries, and for chemical fertilizers and insecticides used in the developing world.

Almost 90 percent of the $ 540 billion in global subsidies given to farmers each year is “harmful,” according to a surprising UN report, writes the Guardian’s Environment Editor. This is the big end of the global subsidy business, in which there is a liberal infusion of money that is injected to stimulate industrialized agriculture every year – “big farma”, if you will.

Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) has lambasted the organic fertilizer policy, and various experts have stood up against it from the safety of their air-conditioned office cubicles in the urban dystopia.

Support for the “oversized” meat and dairy industry in rich countries must be cut, while subsidies for chemical fertilizers and polluting pesticides must be cut in low-income countries, according to the analysis. the UN.

There must be a considerable egg in the face of critics who have opposed the ban on chemical fertilizers in its entirety – even if some criticism of the new policy’s modus operandi would have been, to say the least, rational. But what did we get?

Hysterical rants mainly extolling the virtues of chemical fertilizers accompanied by tirades on the woolly stubbornness of the organic fertilizer initiative.

The Guardian article continued: “The UN report found that between 2013 and 2018, support to farmers averaged $ 540 billion per year, of which 87% ($ 470 billion) was “Harmful”. This included price incentives for specific animals and crops, subsidies for fertilizers and pesticides, and distorting export subsidies and import tariffs.

Hungry

The JVP and SJB know-it-all have been deaf to the known negative effects of chemical fertilizers and now it seems they are at least by default in cahoots with the “big farma” subsidy culture that is ruining the planet.

How about these protests, which were mounted by the “harassed farming community”?

“The changes in subsidy regimes are likely to be politically controversial and could spark protests among farmers and other groups,” said Morgan Gillespy of the Food and Land Use Coalition. “But just because it’s difficult doesn’t mean it shouldn’t happen. The facts are now clear. (British Guardian.)

The farmers’ protests here have for the most part been orchestrated by the hyperactive political machine of the JVP. This has been their usual methodology – that is, to provoke a crisis and then organize a protest citing negligence and worse.

For example, they bustle for Covid-19 related closures at the drop of a hat and when the closures do take place they bring out a parade of the “hungry and neglected” claiming the closures have kept these people hungry. and in abject poverty.

The UN report largely belies campaigns by vested interests on various fronts.

Strident interest groups, for example, have agitated to maintain the imported dairy industry. Powdered milk, in the form it is sold, is useless for the consumer, but then, these are highly subsidized “big farma” products that come to us from countries that have set up these large-scale dairy farming projects. industrial, so to speak, to fool consumers in foreign countries – and contribute colossal amounts to global warming, to boot.

We can no longer have pressure groups – SJB, JVP or supported NGOs, who turn the truth upside down by demonizing organic fertilizer projects and celebrating the use of chemical fertilizers, while lamenting the restrictions on importation of powdered dairy products of foreign origin.

In the current context, pressure groups that stick to such policies for whatever reason, must be populated by ignorant and thugs – or those who are committed to particular interests for collateral reasons. .

Conjuncture

The government’s movement is towards global sustainability and it’s a long game. Those who oppose it on principle are in the Dark Ages – because they are fundamentally encouraging a plan to devastate vast swathes of land.

The UN report cited above indicates that such acts of desertification caused by subsidized agriculture and the use of chemical fertilizers could be rectified by the practice of agroforestry.

Agroforestry is “the intentional integration of trees and shrubs into cropping and livestock systems to create environmental, economic and social benefits”. It is organic farming in its essence as it helps in carbon sequestration which is the process by which carbon dioxide is removed from the atmosphere to be retained in the soil (for crop nutrition).

These are the wise practices that the JVP and the so-called socially conscious elite should encourage if any of them have a progressive bone in their body. But they got along well with the vested interests, now set out in the UN report.

“What Sri Lanka needs right now is to undertake a second green revolution to improve its agricultural yields. As mentioned above, the first Green Revolution was based on the development of high-yielding varieties, the application of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. This is a quote from a recent article by a so-called former deputy governor of the Central Bank.

It is one thing to oppose the organic fertilizer initiative on the retail basis, i.e. say it is too global and so on, but the above quote shows to how much the so-called political elite has retreated into the Dark Ages.

The former deputy governor wants more applications of chemical fertilizers and pesticides – a second green revolution, he says.

What exactly rock has it emerged from recently? The UN warns of the dire consequences of using subsidized chemical fertilizers and industrial scale dairy farming, etc. on the toxic cultivation of agriculture of the past.

Regressive

As Jathika Nidahas Peramuna MP Mohommed Muzammil once said on television, this sort of coverage that crumbles into special interests raises the question: how far have those special interests gone to try to influence people? Is it the money?

One cannot ignore these interest groups – the possibility that they used material incentives to gain supporters.

However, it is unlikely that the former central bank executive was in the payroll. But shouldn’t these people be more aware of how their support for these regressive causes can be detrimental, especially when they can be used by the aforementioned interest groups to promote their harmful practices?

Of course, food safety issues are still present. They cannot be wished away. But does this mean that the obvious detrimental effects of big farma farming practices must be completely ignored? That we turn a blind eye to land desertification and so on that could potentially cause more hunger in the long run?

It is not only myopic, it is totally irresponsible behavior. The JVP, SJB guys owe the nation a wholehearted apology for touting the regressive progressive policy, and the ex-central bank guys could join us as well.

On a matter of principle, it’s an established science that organic farming is quickly becoming a necessity because the so-called green revolutions have come at a price.

High-yielding crop varieties are one thing, but unconditional reliance on chemical fertilizers and unsustainable agricultural practices such as industrial-scale dairy farming are absolutely a thing of the past.

If anyone encourages imports of powdered milk under these circumstances, it is in the Stone Age.

The long game under the new organic fertilizer initiative is difficult and challenging. But transforming requires sacrifices. The project may require adjustments as there are undoubtedly considerations such as crop yield that need to be taken into account. But to oppose the initiative on principle, as our experts have done, is phenomenal ignorance, period.


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