Ecosystem Restoration Camps founder, environmental filmmaker, and soil scientist John D. Liu documents large-scale ecosystem restoration projects in China, Africa, South America and the Middle East, highlighting the enormous benefits for people and planet of undertaking these efforts globally.
Over the past 150 years, poor land management practices, driven by industrial agriculture, has resulted in the loss of half of the earth’s topsoil. Soil is becoming so degraded that some scientists are predicting that in some parts of the world, such as the UK, we only have 60 harvests left. More carbon has been emitted from degraded soil than from the entire transportation industry.
Without immediate, large scale action, many parts of the world will become uninhabitable in the next 50 years. Conflict over resources such as water and farmable land will become common. Millions of people will either starve or, if they’re lucky, migrate, causing rising tensions in areas where land is still safe to live on.
These changes are having a major impact on the living systems that we need to survive. Healthy ecosystems are essential to regulate our climate system, ensuring that there is enough water and nutrients for all of the creatures that depend on them. Sequestering the excess carbon in our atmosphere on a massive scale is one of the last remaining solutions to staving off the worst effects of climate change. By rehabilitating degraded ecosystems and helping farmers convert from industrial to regenerative agriculture, we can sequester enough carbon to create a safe level in the atmosphere (350ppm).
Ecosystem Restoration Camps will help to create action towards this solution by teaching large numbers of people how to restore degraded land, whilst giving them the opportunity to work with local farmers who need support in transitioning to regenerative agriculture. At the camps, people will acquire the knowledge and information they need in order to put theory into practice. This gives farmers who are struggling financially the ability to try regenerative techniques, thanks to the voluntary manual labour, and gives people valuable experience in landscape restoration.
Ecosystem Restoration Camps has the potential to give millions of people around the world the chance to reconnect with the natural world, causing ripple effects as they bring this knowledge and connection back into towns and cities across the globe.