Project in Development – Farming Carbon

Can we sequester all of the excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere with the biggest side-effect being healthier soil?

My new feature-length documentary project Farming Carbon hopes to answer that question.

Trillions of microorganisms live beneath our feet. These bacteria and fungi are the drivers of all life on Earth. Until recently, these microbes were a mystery. New technologies, as well as a reemergence of scientific studies dating back more than a century, are starting to unlock the secrets of this unseen biomass.
Researchers are realizing that these microbes are essential for many coveted soil features such as drought and flood resistance, as well as robust plant growth. They’re even starting to understand how healthy soil can sequester atmospheric carbon far cheaper and more effectively than any current technology. That rich, black soil that will grow almost anything? That’s the carbon. And the more carbon that’s anchored in the soil, the healthier and more productive the land becomes.

farmer, rancher, carbon farming, montanaFarming Carbon will follow Steve Charter as he experiments with intensive grazing techniques and organic inputs in an effort to keep his ranch viable in the face of losing half of his land to a strip mine. Steve’s hands-on experience will serve as the backdrop for a story about rural resilience, and the science of healthy soil and carbon sequestration. The film will explore how pushback from the agriculture industry has hampered soil research as well as dig into the risks farmers face when challenging the status quo.

soil carbon film still
Intensive cattle grazing that mimics natural herding builds soil health.

The film will feature the voices of soil experts including Nicole Masters, Director of Integrity Soils and many others. These experts will weigh in on the science behind soil’s ability to capture carbon and grow better food as a result. Farmers who have pioneered these practices in their own fields will also describe the challenges of implementing these new techniques on an agricultural scale and the results they’ve achieved.

Farming Carbon hopes to illustrate the food-based benefits of good soil practices as well as provide a blueprint to saving the world.

Learn more about Farming Carbon. You can also add your email address in the subscribe box in the sidebar to follow the developments on this film.

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