Restoring Ecosystems to Reverse Global Warming, Tufts 2014

The conference is over, and it was a stunning success –
and our work has just begun.
Stay tuned!

Speaker videos and slides available here on our Program page!

A heart-felt thanks to all of our partners and sponsors, and a special shout-out to our lead sponsors, Tufts Institute of the Environment, Tufts Center for International Environment and Resource Policy, 11th Hour Project, EPIC Bars, Savory Institute, and Virgin Earth Challenge.

Here are just a few of the many unsolicited comments from participants:

“I did make it to several of the talks on Saturday afternoon and workshops on Sunday afternoon.  Thanks so much for the reduced rate.  I learned so much and feel so much more hopeful about the future of our planet.  I look forward to seeing the talks I missed on your website.” – Trudy Macdonald

“. . . let me again thank you for hosting the conference and thereby stimulating a broad community about the carbon sequestration opportunity.  You and your team did an outstanding job and the speakers were amazing.  There are too many highlights to mention here – it was a strong and deep roster. Big applause to you and your team for so powerfully advancing the mission.” – Tom Newmark

“I was blown away by the conference. Not only by the force of the individual speakers but by the elegance with which the program was put together, like a symphony with its overture and then the movements, with all the careful construction and the echoes…I salute you, and whoever else had a hand in mounting the event. I learned a lot and was able to put together the pieces of the puzzle. I only wish that I had been able to stay for Sunday afternoon, but I had to attend to my classes for this week. Thank you.”
– 
Janet Beizer

“I’ve been unable to pry myself away from this feed for two days. These people have brought so much energy and expertise to this nexus of information and techniques that seems to be coalescing into something far greater than the sum of its parts. I am beginning to believe that we will not only reverse climate change, but create a fantastic new way of life in the process. Can’t wait for tomorrow’s talks.”  – Katherine McGuire

“Thank you to you and the entire Bio for Climate team for envisioning and then actualizing an amazing inaugural conference at Tufts University. It was a true occasion and, I hope, a true turning point. It was energizing and inspiring to learn that there are so many people from different disciplines converging on the elegant and overlooked potential of Nature to aid us in our quest for a stable climate.” – Diana Donlon

“Awesome. Thank you [for posting the videos]. These are such a fantastic, inspiring, deeply informative resource to anyone and everyone who has an interest in ecological restoration. Thanks again for putting together such a fantastic conference! ” – Greg Spevak

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Restoring Ecosystems to Reverse Global Warming

November 21-23, 2014

Promoting the power of nature to remove excess carbon from the atmosphere where it does untold damage, and restore it to the soils where it supports abundant life and helps reverse global warming.

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Karoo Image w LablesKaroo region of South Africa. The land on the left is reversing
global warming by capturing carbon dioxide and water by
proper use of keystone animal species and land management,
while the land on the right is exacerbating it though soil
degradation and loss of carbon to the atmosphere.

Conference: November 21-23, 2014 Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts, USA (near Boston) Co-sponsored by Tufts Institute of the Environment (TIE) and The Center for International Environment and Resource Policy (CIERP) at the Fletcher School of Tufts University

Fees: Early Bird Registration extended!  Through November 10, 2014, $100.  From November 11, 2014,  $150. Students/Low Income, $50.  School and non-profit delegations, minimum of 4 from a single institution, $35 per person.  Tufts students, faculty and staff, $15  High school students, $10.  Ten work exchange slots available (contact  climate2014@bio4climate.org).  Register for the conference here.

“Why do we want to host a conference like this? Because harnessing biology represents a new paradigm for climate mitigation that gives us hope.”
     – Antje Danielson, Director, Tufts Institute of the Environment

“Biodiversity for a Livable Climate is championing a new and hopeful narrative in our fight against anthropogenic climate change.  I encourage my colleagues in impact to join me in supporting them. “
       – Howard Fischer, Environmental Philanthropist

“We must mobilize the biosphere to remove carbon dioxide rapidly from the atmosphere and store it in plants and soils. Only such restoration has the potential to store enough carbon to avoid the worst aspects of global warming.  I urge students, colleagues and the public to attend the Biodiversity for a Livable Climate Conference.”
     – William Moomaw , Director (Retired), Center for International Environment
and Resource Policy, The Fletcher School, Tufts University


We are telling a new story.  Each of our speakers presents a chapter in the remarkable narrative of life on earth in the 21st century.  We humans are a key part of that narrative, and while there are many parts they all come together in a single tale.  We will weave those parts together so that each presentation is part of the whole, a whole that builds a different and more hopeful worldview than we’ve heard in a long time.  We have a lot of work to do and heavy paradigms to shift, but we can and will tell the new story with exciting and hopeful outcomes.

unccd potential of land as carbon sink
Our Boston conference has a roster of world-class experts followed by an international series of events bringing together climate advocates, farmers, ranchers, scientists, social scientists, policymakers, NGOs, artists, visionaries and the general public – in other words, any and all of us – for a non-technical discussion to consider:

  1. The exceptional potential of the biosphere to address all of our current emissions, as well as to remove the 125 parts per million of excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
  2. Effective action on a global scale by applying eco-regenerative approaches to lands and waters worldwide.
  3. The use of biological systems to re-establish healthy water cycles to cool the earth’s surface.

Our primary urgent goal in the face of widespread breakdown in addressing climate change is to further the understanding necessary to embark on the global regeneration process made possible by enabling the forces of biology. Collectively we will present affordable strategies for eco-restoration that local, national and international governments, agencies, communities and individuals may rapidly implement in order to reverse global warming.

Mex-side-by-side-2

Land Restoration in Mexico: 1963 – 2003. Carbon is captured while enhancing food and water security. Photo credits: Guillermo Osuna.

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Background

As rising atmospheric carbon concentrations irrefutably demonstrate, the current climate conversation and ensuing policies have failed us. It is clear at this point in time that emissions reductions, while necessary, are insufficient to address the destructive climate processes that are already under way. We need safe, low-tech, inexpensive and viable solutions.MakeSoilEndGW-2-624x505

Hope

There is a way, which has yet to take its rightful place at the heart of the climate debate: the capacity of the natural world to actively remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it in soils worldwide.

The biosphere is a powerful geological force. While it is not yet widely understood, the life force has been terraforming the earth for the past 3.5 billion years, from vast rock formations to an oxygen atmosphere to soils and weather and everything in-between. Forces of living systems, managed for healthy biodiversity and natural cycles, will capture prodigious amounts of carbon dioxide. If we set up favorable conditions, nature will store greenhouse gases in complex and stable biomolecules in soils, the largest terrestrial carbon sink on the planet, as it has done for eons.

We already have the knowledge and experience to move ahead confidently with all due haste. Scientists and practitioners of eco-restoration have decades of experience, repeatedly having demonstrated dramatic successes in bringing dying lands back to life in only a few years, regenerating ecosystems such as dry grasslands, humid jungles, and temperate forests.

To accomplish this on a global scale would not only address a rapidly deteriorating climate, but restore flourishing habitats for the millions of species that we depend upon across the world, and bring untold benefits, including food production and economic security, to people everywhere. Best of all, it is low-tech and low-cost – and when given a chance, the biodiverse life in the world’s soils will do 99% of the work.

We invite sponsorship and partnership from individuals and organizations, which may include support for conference organizing, publicity, administrative support, venue, and operating costs.

For further background information, please see our Resources page, and for inquiries, please contact climate2014@bio4climate.org

margo collins

Future Climate Hero? A child growing up on a dairy farm managed for soil health and regeneration. Photo credit: Abe Collins

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