As COP26 comes to a close, we’re assessing what decisions were made and what it really means...
Over 100 world leaders committed to ending deforestation by 2030 at #COP26
Good news! But, this pledge must be grounded in respect for indigenous communities and local land rights. Care also needs to be taken to plant intercropped native tree species.
This is a big step, with some key leaders committing to restoring damaged land, tackling wildfires, and most importantly supporting indigenous communities within the rainforests.
16% of global CO2 emissions come from change in land use. The majority of these land use related emissions come from deforestation, which indigenous communities have been most affected by. The governments announced that 1.7 billion of funding will be given to indigenous groups and local communities to strengthen security and land rights.
While this goal doesn’t seem ambitious enough, it’s a move in the right direction. There are small actions we can take personally to help speed up the process. By supporting brands who are directly working with indigenous communities (like Jaguar Siembra), we’re becoming part of the solution.
Who else has been left out?
Farming and land use has been largely left out of previous COP negotiations and it was no different this year. Farmers are on the frontline of the global climate emergency, with 20% of all global emissions being attributed to agriculture and land use.
Farmers and land workers across the world have been forced down the path of intensification and mono cropping by a food system dominated by powerful agriculture businesses, supermarkets and other multinational corporations. Alongside oceans, the atmosphere and forests, soils are huge carbon sinks. We need to put our faith in the earth beneath our feet and support farmers to help them transition from industrial agriculture, to agro-ecological methods of farming which will help soils to sequester more carbon.
Food waste was barely on the agenda at COP26. Shocking given that it accounts for 8-10% of global greenhouse gas emissions. By 2050 we’ll need to feed 2 billion more people! If 40% of food produced goes to waste, we need to learn to properly distribute food rather than focus on solutions which work against nature rather than with her, such as vertical farms, GMO crops and chemical agriculture.
Alternatives DO exist
Farmers have been treated as part of the problem for TOO long, it's time we understand they are part of the solution - it's under our feet! We need to take care of the ground beneath us, as well as the communities who have been nurturing it for thousands of years. Farming organically and regeneratively.
Industrial farming has led to widespread pollution, dangerous levels of carbon emissions and SEVERE loss of biodiversity.
The UK government must act now to give farmers like our buckwheat farmer, Wilfred Mole, the support needed to transition to agro-ecology. We need to ensure land workers have the opportunities and support they need to transition to more socially and ecologically farming and land use systems. Jess, our co-founder has visited our own farmers around the world to ensure each ingredient has been nurtured and farmed the way it should be; regeneratively.
Farming practices such as Permaculture, Biodynamic, Syntropic, Agro-ecology and Agro-forestry look beyond organic and each carry wisdom as to how we can create a food and farming system which can feed the world in harmony with the planet. Each of these practices have their roots in indigenous farming, which we can look back to for ancient wisdom to inform modern day food production.
Indigenous people protect more than 80% of the world’s biodiversity. Their knowledge is vital, we must listen to the knowledge they carry of how to live in harmony with nature and remember above all else, that we are Her.