Where things stand on carbon science

What’s the state of the science when it comes to sequestering carbon in the soil, such as through farming? Check out an official position statement issued by CFAES’ renowned Rattan Lal Center for Carbon Management and Sequestration. The brief statement, released Aug. 2, summarizes where the science is clear, where it’s less so, and a strategy for going forward. It mentions, too, a current hot topic, farmers earning carbon credits.

Read the full statement. (Photo: Getty Images.)

CFAES sustainability news, Aug. 30, 2021

Where have fireflies gone?

Youngstown Vindicator, Aug. 23; featuring Dave Shetlar, CFAES Department of Entomology

Hundreds of U.S. cities adopted climate plans. Few have met the goals, but it’s not too late.

USA Today, Aug. 10; featuring Aaron Wilson, OSU Extension

‘Stinkweed’ could be used for green jet fuel

Bio Market Insights, Aug. 9; featuring Ajay Shah, Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering

CFAES sustainability news, July 28, 2021

Farmers make progress in improving water quality, but much work remains

Columbus Dispatch, July 27; featuring Nate Douridas, farm manager, Molly Caren Agricultural Center

Will our food break the climate or save it?

The Hill, July 27; featuring Rattan Lal, School of Environment and Natural Resources

CFAES sustainability news, July 23, 2021

National Geographic, July 22; featuring Mazeika Sullivan, School of Environment and Natural Resources

Marion Star, July 18; Whitney Gherman, OSU Extension

Cleveland.com, July 16; featuring Chris Winslow, Ohio Sea Grant, Stone Laboratory

CFAES’ Lal wins World Food Prize

The honors keep growing for Rattan Lal. The CFAES Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science—recipient of the Japan Prize last year and the World Agriculture Prize and the Glinka World Soil Prize in 2018—was today awarded the World Food Prize.

The award, its website says, recognizes “the achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.”

Gebisa Ejeta, chair of the award’s selection committee and a 2009 recipient of the award, said, “The impact of (Lal’s) research and advocacy on sustainability of agriculture and the environment cannot be overstressed.”

Read more.

Peace, stability start in the soil

Even in the presence of royalty, the conversation was down to earth. And that was totally appropriate.

In a formal ceremony in April 2019 in Tokyo, CFAES soil scientist Rattan Lal received a 2019 Japan Prize, one of the most prestigious global awards in science and technology.

Continue reading

Climate solutions? ‘The clock is ticking’

Ohio State’s free public Environmental Film Series continues tonight, Tuesday, Jan. 28, with Ice on Fire, Leonardo DiCaprio’s 2019 documentary sharing firsthand accounts of people at the forefront of the climate crisis—scientists, farmers, innovators, and others.

Find out more. Watch the trailer above.

Be part of ‘A Climate for Change’

Registration is open for the 2020 Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) annual conference set for Feb. 13–15 in Dayton. Its theme is “A Climate for Change.”

“This year’s event features speakers and sessions dedicated to creating a climate to change agriculture,” OEFFA Program Director Renee Hunt said. “Cultivating a resilient, just, and sustainable agricultural system can help farmers mitigate their climate risks, and address our global crisis.”

The event’s 72 speakers will include nine from CFAES. Look for details on their talks on this blog in the coming weeks.

Find full details on the conference and a link to register.

A drive to make things better

Dave Benfield, pictured below at the wheel of an all-electric GEM car, retires Dec. 31 as CFAES associate vice president of agricultural administration and director of the college’s Wooster campus. Joe Messenger, assistant to the director of OARDC, based in the Facilities Services unit on the Wooster campus, shared the following.

One of the challenges that Dave Benfield asked me to accomplish was to initiate an electric fleet of vehicles on the Wooster campus. During the past five years, we have purchased five electric GEM cars and one electric GEM truck. During the budget year of FY2021, we are planning to buy one GEM flatbed truck, and that will fulfill the electrical fleet needs for our campus.

Thanks to Dave and his vision for future improvements, we have been able to reduce our carbon footprint on this campus, removing six gasoline-fueled vehicles from our service fleet. On average, our electric vehicles can run a full week on one charge. We will be operating our electric fleet long after Dave has retired. He has left us with a positive motivation for continued improvements on our campus.

Read a Dec. 12 Wooster Daily Record story about Benfield and his career, including helping the campus recover from not one, but two, tornadoes. (Photo: Courtesy of Joe Messenger.)

World Soil Day, world soil expert

Celebrate World Soil Day today, Dec. 5, by reading a recent story about CFAES’ own world soil expert, Rattan Lal, Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science, who received the Glinka World Soil Prize on last year’s World Soil Day and the Japan Prize shortly after that.

“In just a handful of soil,” the Ohio State Alumni Magazine story begins, “Rattan Lal ’68 PhD sees the key to feeding people, to preserving their land for generations, to making Earth a better place for all of us.”

Read the full story, and watch the related video above.