A clear contrast of sustainable and unsustainable farming practices - in 20 seconds! - Grist

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A clear contrast of sustainable and unsustainable farming practices — in 20 seconds!

Of course, there are scores of variables when it comes to sustainable farming, but this little video shows the huge difference between no-till and conventional farming:

The video starts on a no-till field — one that isn’t ever plowed. Instead of tilling, or turning over the soil to kill weeds, farmers plant directly into the thatch of grasses and usually use an application of herbicide to knock down weeds. When farmers leave fields bare, like in the other field, soil washes away and local waters are polluted.

Groundcover protects the soil and dramatically reduces erosion. People often think sustainable farming means no chemicals, but sometimes judicious use of chemistry allows for more environmentally friendly options — like keeping the ground covered.

Want to learn more? Here are one, twothree stories about mainstream farmers adopting conservation techniques.