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After decades of aggressive economic development, China has finally decided to conduct a new soil survey. China has had two national soil surveys and two soil pollution studies since 1949. Along with several smaller-scale monitoring studies, the overall data has been presenting three major changes in China’s soil over the last 40 years: worsening heavy metal pollution, rapid acidification, and changes in organic content.

China’s soil is inferior in both quantity and quality in comparison with the rest of the world. After four decades of intensive farming, previous surveys’ findings can no longer reflect the state of China’s soil. Hence, a new soil survey is desperately needed to achieve two main sustainable goals through improved soil health: the guarantee of food security and more efficient carbon sequestration to help China advance towards its 2030 peak carbon and 2060 carbon neutrality targets.

In a conservative industry like agriculture, people are often doubtful of new policies and regulations, but with the development of proper insights, based on sound evidence can change such attitudes.  As an example this year in Germany, farmers were forced to reduce their fertilizer rate by approximately 23% (due to regulatory pressure and high prices), and guess what? Farmers reported above average yields for the winter wheat harvest!  There was also an increase of 15% in the Nitrogen Use Efficiency to over 85% from just a few years back. 

What could have created this positive change? The answer is regenerative farming. When German farmers were asked about what they had changed to obtain positive results, they reported the utilization of precision farming methods, focusing on soil health, better crop rotation and so forth have helped them decrease fertilizer usage.

"We convey in a positive way that regenerative agricultural production is not more expensive and that, on balance, it yields better results. The message to them is clear: it is better for you, for your children, for water, for nitrogen emissions, for your wallet... Change is not something that should be approached from a negative standpoint... We work on a local level whereby core values of positivity and sustainability are paramount. We make grateful use of the opportunity to share that together with our knowledge. That is where the name ‘reNature‘ comes from; it is a step back to nature.”
Dr. Rob Thompson of the University of Reading's Meteorology Department used three glasses of water on different conditions to demonstrate how long it takes water to soak into the ground. When the water is placed onto extremely dry ground, following a heatwave, it notably struggles to absorb. This consequently illustrates why heavy rainfall after a drought can be dangerous and might lead to flash floods.
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