Legget – a tool used to smooth the thatch by driving the butts of the reeds evenly into place.
Pressure on system affecting work visas- Brent Melville:
The measles epidemic in Samoa is affecting New Zealand’s primary sector in the wake of stricter screening regulations for seasonal workers.
Seasonal Solutions co-operative chief executive Helen Axby said pressure on the health systems in Samoa and across the Pacific Islands had contributed to ‘‘major delays’’ in getting workers through the system.
Ms Axby said it was not just the health systems in Samoa that were overloaded. . .
Taking action rather than talking provided way forward – Alice Scott:
It seems somewhat contradictory to talk about mental health and how one can get through one’s demons without talking about it. Alice Scott talked to Laura Douglas about her mental health journey.
‘‘I didn’t talk about it, but I did something about it’’, is what Laura Douglas says got her through when she found herself deeply unhappy a few years ago while working in a high-paying corporate job in Auckland.
‘‘I was in such a dark place. I was away from all of the things that I loved: farming, hunting, fishing, animals … While I had a lot of belief in my abilities, I lacked self-confidence and self-love. I let men control my decision-making and I surrounded myself with people that enabled my unhealthy habits of self-destruction.’’ she said.
Talking about her issues with close friends and family was the last thing she wanted to do. . .
Shearing the load: four women, 2000 lambs, one day – Suzanne McFadden:
A gang of four young Kiwi women are sharpening their combs and cutters to set a nine-hour world shearing record, as the call for a women’s shearing world title grows louder.
Counting sheep – it’s supposedly an age-old remedy for fighting insomnia and lulling yourself to sleep.
But the challenge facing Sarah Higgins – of counting off 500 sheep over nine hours – threatens to keep her awake at night for the next month. . .
Pig virus on the march – Sudesh Kissun:
A new report warns that a virus decimating parts of the global pork industry could spread to more countries next year.
Rabobank’s Global Animal Protein Outlook 2020 says frequent shipments of feed and live animals and the movement of people and equipment across borders will spread African swine fever (ASF).
However, Rabobank’s animal proteins analyst Blake Holgate doesn’t expect additional countries to experience the same level of impact as China and Vietnam. . .
Forests must be in land rules – Glenys Christian:
Forestry should be more closely integrated into land use policy to dispel some of the negativity surrounding increased planting on pastoral land, former hill country farmer and forestry consultant Garth Cumberland says.
“More and more of the farming community are realising the good sense and profitability of forestry.
“Its improved prospects on marginal land could potentially compete with the returns from dairying.” . .
The dark side of plant-based food – it’s more about money than you may think – and Frédéric Leroy:
If you were to believe newspapers and dietary advice leaflets, you’d probably think that doctors and nutritionists are the people guiding us through the thicket of what to believe when it comes to food. But food trends are far more political – and economically motivated – than it seems.
From ancient Rome, where Cura Annonae – the provision of bread to the citizens – was the central measure of good government, to 18th-century Britain, where the economist Adam Smith identified a link between wages and the price of corn, food has been at the centre of the economy. Politicians have long had their eye on food policy as a way to shape society.
That’s why tariffs and other trade restrictions on imported food and grain were enforced in Britain between 1815 and 1846. These “corn laws” enhanced the profits and political power of the landowners, at the cost of raising food prices and hampering growth in other economic sectors. . .
New Zealand’s best political cartoonist, Garrick Tremain, is still in coventry after the eruption of outrage over one of his cartoons.
Readers of the ODT are missing out as a result of that but he is still cartooning and you can go here to enjoy gems like this:
Today we sent a piece to stuff in response to an opinion piece written by Green Peace. Thanks but no thanks to our views, so what better place to post it, than to our facebook group.
We’d like to respond to the opinion piece published in Stuff 7th December 2019 written by the Greenpeace agricultural campaigner, or as it reads anti agricultural campaigner, trying to further demonise the ag industry (https://www.stuff.co.nz/…/agricultures-role-in-getting-to-z…)
Gen Toop writes as if she thinks New Zealand farmers are sitting on their hands in the race to mitigate global warming waiting for a mythical solution, she is offbeat in that view. While it’s true the industry continues to look to technology to innovate and improve, she has highlighted something that needs to be understood about the way we grow animal proteins for the world.
Agriculture in general is nowhere near as harmful to the climate as is often described and New Zealand, with our large swaths of native bush possibly contributing less to global warming than any other international producer. We wouldn’t know because not everything behind the farm gate is measured or measured accurately.
First some inconvenient truths, emissions do not necessarily result in global warming. As we now know from multiple government reports our methane emissions only need to be reduced by a minuscule 0.3 percent per year to avoid further warming. This is because once stock numbers have stabilised for around 10 years, methane decays in the atmosphere at around the same rate as it is being emitted.
The outdated GWP100 metric, which our ETS is based on, assigns methane a warming value of 28 x CO2. This is how much warming a single pulse of methane will cause over the next 100 years. Farm’s however emit a steady flow of methane over time so it is the inflow versus outflow we must measure if we want to understand our impact on warming.
According to Ministry for the Environment data, farmers have reduced their methane by 2.8 percent since 2014 putting them well on track to achieve the 10 percent by 2050 needed to remain climate neutral. Notably, Agriculture is the only sector being asked to reduce emissions below the point of zero warming and this is a direct result of the failure to properly articulate how methane effects climate
It is an absurd situation that agricultural methane accounts for 35 percent of our country’s entire emissions, yet how it is accounted for does not consider the rate it is decaying in the atmosphere. Because NZ’s methane emissions are stable the decay is equal to what is being released. It is similar to a factory planting trees to offset their Co2 emissions. Any emissions cause warming in isolation but not necessarily when measured on a net basis. Perhaps Ms Toop would like to explain why she promotes a net zero release of emissions for CO2 emitters but still finds this unacceptable for Methane?
A more accurate accounting method called GWP-we has been developed for the specific purpose of measuring the warming effect of flow methane over time. Inexplicably this option has so far been ignored, the folly of which is even more surprising given the entire objective of the Paris Agreement is to limit global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures
How are farmers to measure success against this stated goal if they are not measuring the methane’s warming effect?
Add to this, the major oversight of not collecting more data on farm trees. 1.4 million ha of trees already are growing on drystock properties not presently being assessed for their annual carbon sequestration rates.
An agricultural emissions scheme should count ALL measurable offsets. Simply put, make it fair, make sure the accounting system is the correct one, make sure farmers can claim for trees annual carbon sequestration rates, and any other measurable offset so New Zealand continues to grow the most carbon efficient animal proteins in the world.
Until this is done, the likes of Greenpeace and other anti-farming campaigners will continue to use incomplete information and half-truths to criticise the industry.
Instead, let’s celebrate our industry, the day in day out work in all weathers all year round by our 46,000+ farms and celebrate the extraordinary fact that in one amazing minute every day in NZ, our country exports five and half tonnes of pastoral agricultural product generating more than $100,000 for NZ. That is almost twice the average annual income of a New Zealand household. In less than a minute the pastoral sector that works so hard for this country generates income that helps pay for a school teacher, a policeman, a nurse. Maybe that minute also makes it possible for a non farming household to take their family on a holiday, or provide their children a better education
More broadly, we all need to do some serious navel glazing rather than opining on ideology and travelling the same old road of finding someone else to blame for everybody’s problem. Let’s face it, it’s not so much the ruminants, it’s people. Here is agriculture already reducing its impacts, yet on the other hand a recently released report tells us Wellington’s vehicle emissions, have risen 12% between 2013 and 2018, and not to pick on Wellington, it’s airport also proposes to DOUBLE numbers flying into the city by 2040.
Is the keen focus on agriculture because dealing with the growth in emissions from other sectors is too close to home, and will impact individuals requiring a change their own behaviours?
Stuff has decreed that it will publish nothing that could be construed as climate change denial.
This piece from 50 Shades of Green isn’t denying climate change, it’s responding, rationally, to an opinion piece Stuff published and that in the interests of balance it ought to have published.