Re: Food miles

Patricia Dines wrote:
> Hi - Thought this might be of interest, re: prior conversation on the list
> re: the value of local food and re: looking at what sustainability in ag
> means... This seems to me to be an idea, a proposed project, and some leads
> for more info... P. Dines
> --- FORWARD ---
> From: Joseph G Jones, INTERNET:J.G.Jones@cms.salford.ac.uk
> Sender: owner-imap@CHUMBLY.MATH.MISSOURI.EDU
> To: Patricia Dines, 73652,1202
> Date: Fri, Jun 6, 1997, 4:25 PM
> Subject: Food miles
> 1)   The Food Miles database
> Global warming caused by CO2 emissions is generally recognised as an
> issue of concern.  One factor yet to enter public consciousness is the
> amount of CO2 produced in transporting food to the consumer. This is
> not to say that we should revert to a diet of turnips and potatoes, but
> that consumers need more information on the CO2 that products
> generate.  Food miles is the term used in green circles to describe
> this concern.
> Some of the factors that cause CO2 include:
> The distance that food travels,
> The transportation involved - plane, train, truck, barge etc.
> The storage required to maintain the quality of the food.
> The project could be split into two projects (one student on each)
> 1) A research project on what factors to use and how to measure them.
> 2) Production of an actual database based on quick research and assumptions
> Some websites for more info follow:
> http://www.mcspotlight.org/media/reports/foodmiles.html
> http://www.newciv.org/worldtrans/GIB/BI/BI-144.HTML
> http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/san/htdocs/hypermail/html-home/6-html/0412.html> http://ekolserv.vo.slu.se/Docs/www/Subject/Definition_of_sust._ag/550-599/i
> ndex.html

I would like to add another factor in the production of CO2 in the food 
production system- Tillage. 
Soil that is turned or stirred releases CO2 gas into the atmosphere. 
There are some power companys in Canada that are subsidizing farmers to 
not till their land so the CO2 stays in the soil and not cause the 
CO2 level in the  air to exceed the threshhold. Simply put, they are 
paying farmers so they can pollute! An interesting dilema.  
Don Reicosky (USDA ARS North Central Research Lab. Morris, MN) has done 
numerous detailed studies on the effect tillage has on the release of 
 "New Generation Cropping Systems": the cutting edge of sustainable 
Steve Groff
Cedar Meadow Farm
679 Hilldale Rd
Holtwood PA 17532  USA
Ph. 717-284-5152