Nature-based solutions for agriculture

Photo by <a href="">Jan Kopřiva</a> on <a href="">Unsplash</a>

How can nature-based solutions help with sustainability?

Today we are going to talk about some­thing that may seem fair­ly tech­ni­cal, but it’s some­thing of great impor­tance for our dai­ly nutri­tion and cloth­ing. Nature-based solu­tions for agri­cul­ture!

Nature-based solu­tions for agri­cul­ture involve using nat­ur­al sys­tems to sup­port agri­cul­tur­al pro­duc­tiv­i­ty. That’s instead of rely­ing on chem­i­cal pes­ti­cides and oth­er syn­thet­ic inputs. These solu­tions can include a wide range of approach­es, such as plant­i­ng cov­er crops, using com­post and oth­er organ­ic mat­ter to improve soil health, and intro­duc­ing ben­e­fi­cial insects and oth­er nat­ur­al preda­tors to con­trol pests.

Nature-based solutions for agriculture
Pho­to by Fed­eri­co Respi­ni on Unsplash

What are cov­er crops? Cov­er crops are plants that are grown specif­i­cal­ly to improve the health of the soil, instead of for har­vest. These crops are often plant­ed between reg­u­lar grow­ing sea­sons and they are one of the most impor­tant nature-based solu­tions in agri­cul­ture.

One of the key ben­e­fits of nature-based solu­tions is that they work with, rather than against nat­ur­al sys­tems. This means that they can be more sus­tain­able and resilient in the long term. They take advan­tage of the strengths and syn­er­gies of nat­ur­al sys­tems.

For exam­ple, by plant­i­ng cov­er crops, farm­ers can improve soil health, reduce ero­sion, and pro­vide habi­tat for ben­e­fi­cial insects, which can sup­port more pro­duc­tive crops. It’s a con­stant win-win.

Anoth­er advan­tage is that they are more effec­tive than syn­thet­ic pes­ti­cides at con­trol­ling pests and dis­eases. This is because they take into account the inter­ac­tions between dif­fer­ent species in an ecosys­tem. They use them to dis­rupt pest pop­u­la­tions and reduce their impact. For exam­ple, intro­duc­ing nat­ur­al preda­tors such as lacewings and lady­bugs can help to con­trol aphid pop­u­la­tions, with­out chem­i­cal pes­ti­cides, so dan­ger­ous for the envi­ron­ment and the peo­ple work­ing on the plan­ta­tion.

Nature-based solutions for agriculture
Pho­to by Gabriel Jimenez on Unsplash

Besides to their ben­e­fits for agri­cul­ture, nature-based solu­tions also sup­port the con­ser­va­tion of bio­di­ver­si­ty. With these approach­es, farm­ers can help to pre­serve impor­tant eco­log­i­cal sys­tems, such as wet­lands and forests. They pro­vide crit­i­cal habi­tat for a wide range of species. This can help to pro­mote a health­i­er and more bal­anced ecosys­tem, which can sup­port both agri­cul­ture and con­ser­va­tion.

Nature-based solutions for agriculture
Pho­to by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Over­all, nature-based solu­tions for agri­cul­ture offer many ben­e­fits, includ­ing sus­tain­abil­i­ty, resilience, and effec­tive­ness. By using these approach­es, farm­ers can sup­port the health and pro­duc­tiv­i­ty of their crops, while also pro­tect­ing the envi­ron­ment and pro­mot­ing bio­di­ver­si­ty.

At Par­a­digme Mode we are engaged in show­ing you the best prac­tices in all indus­tries head­ing towards a more sus­tain­able devel­op­ment. In this series about agri­cul­ture we will soon talk about how each one of fash­ion mate­ri­als is har­vest­ed and the more eth­i­cal ways to do it. See you soon!

In-depth resources

Written by David Ferrero
January 10, 2023

Dive in