Practicing Earth Day Every Day

EarthDay14

Yes, even farmers celebrate Earth Day. Most don’t simply celebrate just one day a year, but instead have a body of work that makes a positive difference every single day. Over the past decades, farmers have taken enormous steps by altering their practices in order to take better care of the soil, protect the environment and increase yields.

What are corn farmers doing?

They are using seeds that require less pesticide and water.

They are using precision agriculture technology to conserve fuel, lower emissions, and reduce soil compaction.

They are using lesser tillage practices to build organic matter, conserve moisture and reduce erosion.

They are taking soil samples so they know exactly where and how much fertilizer and seed is needed in different parts of the field.

They are planting cover crops to recycle leftover nutrients, increase water-holding capacity, reduce erosion and provide wildlife habitat.

What are the results? Over the past 30 years, corn farmers have:

Cut erosion by 67%

Reduced irrigation by 53%

Decreased land use per bushel by 30%

Lowered energy use per bushel by 43%

Lessened greenhouse gas emissions by 36%

Increased productivity by 101%

*Statistics via Field to Market Report

Incredible efforts have led to amazing results, but more has to be done as farmers face the uphill battle of providing for the world’s seven billion people, a number that continues to grow by 200,000 with each passing day. Increases in sustainability have never been more important or more demanded. Rest assured, you can count on farmers to meet the world’s demands for safe, abundant and affordable supplies of food, feed, fuel and fiber, not only on Earth Day, but every day.

To learn more about South Dakota farmer practices and sustainability efforts, visit ThisIsFarming.org or TrueEnvironmentalists.com

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