Vandana Shiva is an Indian scholar, environmental activist, food sovereignty advocate, ecofeminist and anti-globalisation author.
Based in Delhi, Shiva has written more than 20 books. She is often referred to as “Gandhi of grain” for her activism associated with the anti-GMO movement.
If capitalism began in the fields, Vandana’s hack is to uproot that extractive model. Return to farming practices proven, over ten’s of millennia. A farmer in her native India, she’s pioneered regenerative agriculture there. It’s a change in mindset.
First step is the Earth is alive. The soil is alive. Plants are alive. We work with photosynthesis, and this then grows us more food. But it also starts to cool the planet if they reverse and arrest the life degrading processes that the fossil-fuel-thinking has caused: the large monocultures, the deforestation, and start regenerating forests, soil organisms. With biodiversity intensification we can actually repair the broken carbon cycle and grow more food in the process.
So cooling the planet and growing our food is the same process,
…but we need people to get access to affordable food. How does this happen?
We are growing 750 rice varieties that are suitable for the Himalayan region. With our diversity intensification our calculations show that we could feed two times India’s population. So our soils are rich in organic matter. We are drawing down the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. That excess carbon dioxide is forming aggregates, is forming humous which is then holding water. Our water levels have gone up 70 feet since we started and our pollinators are six times richer than the forest next door. We can double food production for the planet.
This is the path humanity must go.BBC Radio 4: “Hacking Capitalism”
Join us for our third “earth conversation” in which Vanada Shiva will discuss some of the most important challenges we face and the responses she is pioneering.