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Stuff you're not allowed to know #6: global greening

27 Sep 2023 | Science Notes

The next topic in the Alimonti article that your intellectual superiors have decreed you are not supposed to learn about is the riotous growth of trees, plants, grasses and all the other inhabitants of the Earth for whom rising CO2 levels are nutritious food, not poisonous “pollution”. The authors summarize several independent studies that have used changes in atmospheric chemistry and satellite imagery, all of which conclude that the world is getting greener. Even deserts are starting to green up. And rising CO2 is behind it, at least in part, though agricultural practices have also improved. The combination means rising food production per hectare, and the authors point to evidence that a return to pre-industrial CO2 levels would entail an 18 percent drop in global agricultural productivity. We’re willing to go way out on a limb here and say such a drop would be a bad thing due to the mass starvation facing poor nations if humans overall grew a fifth less food.

The authors acknowledge that rising CO2 and the general greening effect is a complex issue, and without adaptation it is not always beneficial. For example, they cite a study that showed that more rapid plant growth in the early spring can lead to drier soils in the summer. So farmers need to adapt practises accordingly. But we know they are good at adapting and increasing productivity for the simple reason that agricultural productivity has been rising for decades. And millennia, we might add. But especially recently. The authors present the output per hectare record for maize, rice, soybean and wheat since 1961, which taken together provide 64 percent of the world’s caloric intake.

These are remarkable growth rates ranging from 2.4 to 3.8 percent per year, which translates into food growth outstripping population growth. The authors also point out that variations in extreme weather events have not had any effect on agricultural productivity growth. In sum, rising CO2 has contributed to overall global greening and improved agricultural productivity. Which is one reason why alarmists remain so silent on the subject.

6 comments on “Stuff you're not allowed to know #6: global greening”

  1. Another way of measuring food production: remember all those fund-raising adverts by various charitable organizations a few decades ago showing starving children in Africa and similar places? Don't see them so much nowadays.

  2. In a 2016 paper from NASA, greening (Leaf area index) between 1980 and 2010 was approximately 18% . By extrapolating , greening between 1960 to 2020 is estimated to be 35%. Wonderful news you would think, but an alarmist acquaintance countered that greening is bad as it reduces the earth’s albedo (reflectivity) and so accelerates warming. You just shake your head.

  3. I have often thought how African famines are not around in our everyday news. (That is a wonderful thing, unless media is lying)
    More food, so now we can destroy western farmers for polluting the planet an causing more food to be produced.

  4. Perhaps this is why government bodies are pushing hard for farmers to reduce fertilizer use. The evidence of a worsening planet is becoming harder to convince people of due to the abundance of plant-life on Earth. With a reduction of food production, they believe they will be more convincing about the worsening of life due to food shortages. They will be able to point to starving people and blame the problem on climate change and the evidence of such via lack of food. Those who are neck deep in the belief that the oceans are boiling and bombs of rain are real things will believe the tripe. Those who have their eyes open will realize that it is a self-inflicted problem created to support the narrative of the eco-terrorists.

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