Holistic Management: Another Tool In Your Kit Bag

This introduction to this article is extracted from the preface to my new book Planned Grazing: A Study Guide and Field Manual (see below). But first, please realize that “Holistic Planning” is not a grazing system. It is a planning method with the unique method of grazing is only a part. 

A few comments on the terminology: Those even vaguely familiar with the “holistic” approach to planned grazing will immediately recognize that I have avoided the use of certain “buzz” words that, frankly, offend me and for good reason. 

Take, for example, the words holistic and sustainability. By dictionary definition, both words have meanings to which hardly anyone could object. Who in their right mind could be opposed to sustainable agriculture? Especially when dealing with human and natural systems, very few would deny the concept that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts or that the organization’s land, its people and their money should be viewed as one. 

Never-the-less, these words have been co-opted by malevolent and misguided elements in society and incorporated into a code that furthers their agenda. This terminology has become the language of radical environmentalism as advocated by the United Nations and its Agenda 21. 

This massive wealth re-distribution scheme is one of the most destructive forces of life, liberty and property ever faced by mankind. Their claims that overpopulation, declining energy resources, deforestationspecies losswater shortages, certain aspects of global warming, and an assortment of other global environmental issues are unsupported by analysis of the relevant data. 

Where” Holistic” Management Crosses Paths with Agenda 21: The anti-private property and anti-free market “sustainable development” movement utilizes triple-bottom-line accounting (TBL). TBL was created by the United Nations to advance the four main initiatives birthed at the 1992 U.N. Earth Summit in Rio de Janerio: Climate Change, Agenda 21. 

TBL (also known as people, planet, profit or ‘the three pillars’) captures an expanded spectrum of values and criteria for measuring organizational (and societal) success: economic, ecological and social. With the ratification of the United Nations and ICLEEI (International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives) TBL became the standard for urban and community accounting in early 2007. It has now become the dominant approach to public-sector full-cost accounting. 

In the private sector, a commitment to corporate social responsibility (CSR) implies a commitment to some form of TBL reporting.  

With Holistic Management, decisions are made and tested for soundness and to make sure they will take you toward your holistic goal. There are seven of these tests, including “sustainability, society and culture” – i.e. echoes of Agenda 21. 

Of course, people who make their living in the free market know that economics already accounts for “society” and “environment.” Every day in every purchase decision made by each of the approximately 330 million people in the United States, a value is given to society and environment through price.

Imposing a value for society and environment ensures they are double counted. No matter how well-intended industry’s acknowledgement of the triple bottom line, there is no escaping the fact that it sets producers up for a tax at some point in the future. Whatever extraneous values are agreed to will eventually become a financial penalty on production. 

We do not advocate the use of triple bottom line accounting. We do advocate for private property rights and free markets. 

jtl

via Australian Permaculture Magazine 

By Emily Stokes

When you make a decision, what do you consider? Expert advice and scientific research? Intuition? Past experience?

Will your decision achieve what you want? And how quickly? Is your decision lawful, ethical? Will it make you money? Annoy the neighbors? Win you accolades?

There are so many things to consider when making decisions, large and small. Whether you’re choosing between planting corn or watermelons next summer, or deciding on an irrigation system for a conservation project, or working out whether or not to take that overseas holiday (a lot of our decisions have a distinct financial component), your decisions may have reverberations for years to come.

Generally we make decisions on whatever our goals are at that particular time, without necessarily considering whether or not it has long term consequences for the sustainability of our soil, or our grandchildren’s ability to eat healthy food.

Is there a better way to make our decisions? A way that does consider all of the factors – social, financial, and environmental?

Allan Savory believes there is. So he created a system for making decisions, and called it Holistic Management. It’s simply a ‘framework’ for making decisions that takes into consideration all of the factors, social, financial, and environmental, both short and long term. It’s a way to make better decisions for yourself, your family, your co-workers, future generations, the planet, AND your back pocket.

Sound too good to be true?

It all begins with the end in mind. A goal. Or what they refer to in Holistic Management circles as a ‘Holistic Context’. This is something that is created by all those in your ‘whole’ (which might be your family members or your management team). It’s when you really dig down deep and work out what you really want out of life. Then you make all of your decisions with this goal in mind.

There is a strong land management component in the Holistic Management teachings. Allan Savory has a land management background as a Zimbabwean biologist. Savory observed the natural herding tendencies of the buffalo, zebra and antelope, and realized that large grazing animals play a critical role in the health of some environments.

Later, when working in the USA he came to realize that this deterioration of the African environment was not necessarily a result of overpopulation, poverty, overstocking, lack of technology or lack of expert advice. The same deterioration was happening in Western Texas, USA, where they had the opposite factors – a declining population, the latest technology, and sophisticated expert advice. The only common denominator between these two situations was the decisions the human managers of these environments had made.

Savory recognized that environments everywhere only function in ‘whole’ systems and that we need to change the way we view and manage the land. This led to the development of the Holistic Management decision making framework, as we know it today.

And people all over the world, Australia included, are seeing real results using the Holistic Management framework: increased stocking rates (up to 400%), increased profits, more productive and healthier soils, reduced costs, reversal of desertification, increased biodiversity and wildlife habitat, increased water retention, better food security, and better family relationships.

Whether you’re a running a market garden, a bakery, a grazing property, or a family (the most complex of all!) – the Holistic Management framework can help you make better decisions, think more sustainably, become more connected with the land, and create the type of life you want.

Planned Grazing: A Study Guide and Reference ManualPlanned Grazing: A Study Guide and Reference Manual. This is the ideal squeal to A Handbook for Ranch Managers.  Although the ecological principles remain the same, what was originally known as “The Savory Grazing Method” now answers to a multitude of different names: ranching for profit, holistic management, managed grazing, mob grazing, management intensive grazing, etc. Land & Livestock International, Inc. uses “Restoration Grazing” under its “Managing the Ranch as a Business” program.” No mater what you call it, this summary and synopsis will guide you step by step through the process and teach you how to use it as it was originally intended. No more excuses for failing to complete your grazing plans.

A Handbook for Ranch ManagersA Handbook for Ranch Managers.  In keeping with the “holistic” idea that the land, the livestock, the people and the money should be viewed as a single integrated whole: Part I deals with the management of the natural resources. Part II covers livestock production and Part III deals with the people and the money. Not only would this book make an excellent basic text for a university program in Ranch Management, no professional ranch manager’s reference bookshelf should be without it. It is a comprehensive reference manual for managing the working ranch. The information in the appendices and extensive bibliography alone is worth the price of the book.

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Posted in Cell Grazing, Drought Management, Grass-Fed Beef, Grassfed, Planned Grazing, Restoriation Grazing, Savory Grazing Method | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

List of excuses for ‘The Pause’ in global warming

39 and counting

top10_pause_explanations

This list was originally compiled by me for the first 10 seen above, and updated by Mark at The Hockey Schtick, and is repeated here for broader reach. It will be updated regularly. Each item links to a relevant new release and or [rebuttal].

1) Low solar activity

2) Oceans ate the global warming [debunked] [debunked] [debunked]

3) Chinese coal use [debunked]

4) Montreal Protocol

5) What ‘pause’? [debunked] [debunked] [debunked] [debunked]

6) Volcanic aerosols [debunked]

7) Stratospheric Water Vapor

8) Faster Pacific trade winds [debunked]

9) Stadium Waves

10) ‘Coincidence!’

11) Pine aerosols

12) It’s “not so unusual” and “no more than natural variability”

13) “Scientists looking at the wrong ‘lousy’ data” http://

14) Cold nights getting colder in Northern Hemisphere

15) We forgot to cherry-pick models in tune with natural variability [debunked]

16) Negative phase of Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation

17) AMOC ocean oscillation

18) “Global brightening” has stopped

19) “Ahistorical media”

20) “It’s the hottest decade ever” Decadal averages used to hide the ‘pause’[debunked]

21) Few El Ninos since 1999

22) Temperature variations fall “roughly in the middle of the AR4 model results”

23) “Not scientifically relevant”

24) The wrong type of El Ninos

25) Slower trade winds [debunked]

26) The climate is less sensitive to CO2 than previously thought [see also]

27) PDO and AMO natural cycles and here

28) ENSO

29) Solar cycle driven ocean temperature variations

30) Warming Atlantic caused cooling Pacific [paper] [debunked by Trenberth & Wunsch]

31) “Experts simply do not know, and bad luck is one reason”

32) IPCC climate models are too complex, natural variability more important

33) NAO & PDO

34) Solar cycles

35) Scientists forgot “to look at our models and observations and ask questions”

36) The models really do explain the “pause” [debunked] [debunked] [debunked]

37) As soon as the sun, the weather and volcanoes – all natural factors – allow, the world will start warming again. Who knew?

38) Trenberth’s “missing heat” is hiding in the Atlantic, not Pacific as Trenberth claimed [maybe so, maybe not]  [debunked]

39) “Slowdown” due to “a delayed rebound effect from 1991 Mount Pinatubo aerosols and deep prolonged solar minimum”based upon a paper published today finding cooling effect of volcanic aerosols from large eruptions lasts only 3-5 years [Hansen's 2011 paper conveniently claims Mt. Pinatubo aerosols were still causing the "slowdown" in warming 20 years later]:http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.com/2014/08/new-paper-finds-large-volcanic.html

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The Essence of Liberty: Volume I: Liberty and History: The Rise and Fall of the Noble Experiment with Constitutionally Limited Government (Liberty and ... Limited Government) (Volume 1)The Essence of Liberty Volume I: Liberty and History chronicles the rise and fall of the noble experiment with constitutionally limited government. It features the ideas and opinions of some of the world’s foremost contemporary constitutional scholars. This is history that you were not taught at the mandatory government propaganda camps otherwise known as “public schools.” You will gain a clear understanding of how America’s decline and decay is really nothing new and how it began almost immediately with the constitution. Available in both paperback and Kindle versions.

The Essence of Liberty: Volume II (The Economics of Liberty)The Essence of Liberty Volume II: The Economics of Liberty will introduce the reader to the fundamental principles of the Austrian School of Economics. The Austrian School traces its origins back to the Scholastics of Medieval Spain. But its lineage actually began with Carl Menger and continued on through Adam Smith, Ludwig von Mises, Murray Rothbard and many others. It is the one and only true private property based, free market line of economic thought. Available in both paperback and Kindle versions.

The Essence of Liberty: Volume III: A Universal Philosophy of Political Economy (Liberty: A Universal Political Ethic) (Volume 3)The Essence of Liberty Volume III: Liberty: A Universal Political Ethic. This is the volume that pulls it all together. With reference to Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s description of Murray Rothbard’s work, it is a “unique contribution to the rediscovery of property and property rights as the common foundation of both economics and political philosophy, and the systematic reconstruction and conceptual integration of modern, marginalist economics and natural-law political philosophy into a unified moral science: libertarianism.” Available in both paperback and Kindle versions.

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Understanding Resources

…oil was not a resource before we discovered how to make petroleum out of it and how to use petroleum for energy. Rather, it was a nuisance and finding oil on one’s property actually lowered the value of that property. It was a black, nasty goo that we found no use for…No environmentalist would have claimed back then that we should change our ways or we “might run out” of this nasty thing. Why? Because, at heart, they too are economists. It is just that they don’t know how to properly reason about resources.

It is rightfully said that, if the American economy was the 7th wonder of the world, then American economic ignorance must be the 8th. This is the best reconciliation and explanation of why it seems to be that way that I have ever seen.

The example I used in my economics classes was corn. Will we ever run out of corn? No! (absent government interventionism, of course).

Corn is harvested once a year in the fall. At that point, there will be no more corn until this time next year. So why won’t we run out? Well as the level in the silo dwindles, price increases. It will eventually get so high that even I will quit eating corn tortillas.

The same can be said for water or any other “resource.”  — jtl, 419

By Per Bylund from Economic Reasoning via Liberty.me

I have recently experienced a discussion with environmentalists, which was as frustrating as it was educational. The discussion started around the concept of economic growth, to which environmentalists are often ideologically opposed, but quickly turned into a rather cross-paradigmatic attempt at educating the other side really only talking past each other. I, as an economist, was quickly dismissed by the environmentalists for being an economist and for that reason “fundamentally naïve” and “completely in lack of knowledge” of economics. The reason? I did not realize, they claimed, the strictly physical limitations to economic reasoning.

While I didn’t take their word for it, which is hard to do when being lectured in my own area of expertise, they also refused to consider what I had to say. The difference here is that both sides talked about my expertise: economics. While they were beyond reach of any theory or argument, it quickly became clear that the problem was their environmentalist understanding of what makes a resource. To them, a resource is strictly its physical composition – wrapped in economic terms.

What they argue is really a fundamental contradiction that emanates from a limited understanding of something of a straw man type of economics. This is easy to see if we use an example to illustrate their thinking. Peak Oil is known well enough to function as an example of how environmentalists go wrong in their own reasoning. This theory doesn’t really say that “we’ll run out of oil,” as it is often interpreted in everyday discourse, but is a theory that says that the rate of extraction of oil (petroleum) will at some point have reached its maximum. After this point, extraction rates will fall (if not plummet).

This is really a truism based on the fact that there is only so much oil available for extraction. So to say “we’ll run out of oil” is a simplification that is in line with the assumptions of Peak Oil theory, though is not the theory per se. Yet, of course, it is used as an argument by environmentalists that we will indeed run out of oil.

However, what they’re missing here is that there is absolutely no reason to assume that we need or are dependent on a specific “rate” of extraction. This is a highly arbitrary and anti-economic assumption that it would be very difficult to find persuasive argument to support. But for the theory to be at all relevant this has to be the case. And this is of course how it is used by environmentalists.

The problem is that we are not really dependent on oil and we are not really in trouble if we run out of oil. Where there is a real market, prices reflect the present levels of both supply and demand and take into account necessary reinvestment for future supply. Like we learn in introductory economics courses: when we start running out of the resource, the price tends to rise to account for this fact. At that point, the economy starts producing alternative resources that suddenly appear “worth it” but previously were not.

This means, in effect, that we will never run out of a resource. It also means that the physical composition of oil – indeed, the concept of oil altogether – is completely unnecessary for the economic analysis of economic growth. A resource is really whatever is considered of value by producers aiming to please consumers’ needs and wants. It doesn’t have to be a physical good, though throughout history it generally has been. As we slowly enter the information age, it is important to acknowledge the fact that non-physical concepts such as “knowledge” or “information” can be more valuable factors of production than actual natural resources.

What this means is that the physical reality in which we all live and act is not, as environmentalists claim, a strict limitation (if at all a limitation) to economic growth, prosperity or civilization. From a social or societal point of view, the physical dimension of resources is reflected in the market price – but there isn’t really all that much more to it. Value is a subjective and intangible concept.

This amounts to a – to many – mind-boggling insight: that the physical dimension is not really limiting economic activity or value creation, it is but a fact that is sort of incorporated in it. I would go further and argue that the physical dimension is in fact limited by the economic dimension. While this is completely beyond the imagination of environmentalists and foreign to their ability to understand, there is a great deal of truth to it. From a social (that is, economic) point of view, the physical limitations of resources (their limited quantity) is of no importance unless they have been valued. Anyone knowledgeable in economics would subscribe to the idea that a “resource” (physical thing) that is not used for any purpose is of no value and therefore is of no concern to us. (Perhaps environmentalists will subscribe to this statement as well, though not its implications.)

If it is of no concern because we see no use for it, then it really isn’t a resource. It is just stuff or matter. And then there is no point to analyzing it. If this is not the case, that is if we find a use for it, we immediately see two things: (1) it has value, and (2) it exists in a scarce economic quantity. At some point, the cost of extraction exceeds the value of its use.

See what happened here? We really took Peak Oil and “economicized” it. What matters is not how much (quantity) oil there is and whether we are technologically equipped (with or without innovations) to extract at a rate that is higher or lower than now. What matters is if the cost of doing so, which is the total social cost in a functioning market, is lower or higher than the value perceived in its use. It is really a resource only when the cost is lower than the perceived value of use.

The error the environmentalists I talked to made over and over again was conflating physical resources with economic resources, and then concluding that economics cannot account for depletion of physical supply. But whether or not we “run out” of oil, as is the implication of Peak Oil, is really irrelevant from an economic point of view. It is not irrelevant, as as environmentalists eagerly claim, because economists are only interested in money and don’t care about sustainability. It is irrelevant because it is not the oil itself that is a resource – it is our [intended] use of it.

It is highly unlikely that we will run out of oil simply for the fact that as the cost of extraction increases we will see alternatives emerge, so we will already have adjusted to other sources of energy when we get to the point where there isn’t “enough” oil (though the word will have lost its meaning at that point – oil will be no resource).

The claim these environmentalists were making was that I, the economist, had very lacking knowledge in “basic physics.” This is why I argued so naively and, frankly, was so stupid. Whether or not this lacking knowledge is a true statement or not is however completely beside the point. A historical example makes this quite clear: oil was not a resource before we discovered how to make petroleum out of it and how to use petroleum for energy. Rather, it was a nuisance and finding oil on one’s property actually lowered the value of that property. It was a black, nasty goo that we found no use for.

No environmentalist would have claimed back then that we should change our ways or we “might run out” of this nasty thing. Why? Because, at heart, they too are economists. It is just that they don’t know how to properly reason about resources.

Environmental & Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian View

edited by

Dr Jimmy T (Gunny) LaBaume

Is now available in both PAPERBACK and Kindle

BookCoverImageMurray N. Rothbard was the father of what some call Radical Libertarianism or Anarcho-Capitalism which Hans-Hermann Hoppe described as “Rothbard’s unique contribution to the rediscovery of property and property rights as the common foundation of both economics and political philosophy, and the systematic reconstruction and conceptual integration of modern, marginalist economics and natural-law political philosophy into a unified moral science: libertarianism.”

This book applies the principles of this “unified moral science” to environmental and natural resource management issues.

The book started out life as an assigned reading list for a university level course entitled Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian View.

As I began to prepare to teach the course, I quickly saw that there was a plethora of textbooks suitable for universal level courses dealing with environmental and natural resource economics. The only problem was that they were all based in mainstream neo-classical (or Keynesian) theory. I could find no single collection of material comprising a comprehensive treatment of environmental and natural resource economics based on Austrian Economic Theory.

However, I was able to find a large number of essays, monographs, papers delivered at professional meetings and published from a multitude of sources. This book is the result. It is composed of a collection of research reports and essays by reputable scientists, economists, and legal experts as well as private property and free market activists.

The book is organized into seven parts: I. Environmentalism: The New State Religion; II. The New State Religion Debunked; III. Introduction to Environmental and Natural Resource Economics; IV. Interventionism: Law and Regulation; V. Pollution and Recycling; VI. Property Rights: Planning, Zoning and Eminent Domain; and VII. Free Market Conservation. It also includes an elaborate Bibliography, References and Recommended Reading section including an extensive Annotated Bibliography of related and works on the subject.

The intellectual level of the individual works ranges from quite scholarly to informed editorial opinion.

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Response to George Monbiot

There is no doubt but what Allan Savory is one of the most brilliant men to have ever lived. Anywhere his method is properly applied the health of the environment improves. So, if the method is so great, then why isn’t everybody doing it?

Reason #1 is personal and deals with personality. One of the greatest travesty’s ever to befall natural resource management is that the man has a very rude manner and abrasive personality. In short, he is a first class asshole. That can be witnessed during the very first part of the very last video where he and Jody set out to give us a tour of their African home–“since (we) are going to invade his privacy anyway…”   

Reason #2 is political. Alan’s propensity toward collectivism goes back to his involvement in Rhodesian politics and the war. In June 1973, he made a public statement that, if he had been born a black Rhodesian, he would have been a (communist) guerrilla fighter.  

Today, even the jargon and terminology that he and his followers use are traceable to the anti-private property and anti-free market “sustainable development” movement which was birthed at the 1992 U.N. Earth Summit in Rio de Janerio: Climate Change, Agenda 21. 

This massive wealth re-distribution scheme is one of the most destructive forces of life, liberty and property ever faced by mankind and until “holistic” management divorces itself from these collectivist ideas, their progress and acceptance will continue to be slower than necessary.

But he is right, “cattle are the key.” — jtl 

By Daniela Ibarra-Howell via The Savory Institute

Grasslands Sky

Allan - London (1)

A marvelous community of farmers, pastoralists, ranchers, scientists and entrepreneurs from around the world gathered in London for the Savory Institute conference – “Putting Grasslands to Work” – on August 1-2, 2014. Attendees were inspired and empowered by the rich stories, scientific research, learning and networking that took place. The presentations are available HERE to watch.

We were obviously disappointed by the article by George Monbiot, published in The Guardian.  It was unfortunate Monbiot could not attend the conference. He was invited personally in early July, added to our email blast list, and again invited when he contacted us during the conference. It was also unfortunate that he didn’t seem to find time to watch the presentations via the webstreaming or engage separately with scientific experts, practitioners, and Savory Institute staffers we made readily available to him before he released the article.

Audience

We are in fact admirers of much of Monbiot’s work and there is so much common ground for us to stand on. For example, Monbiot’s TED talk on the intrinsic value of predator-prey relationships is one of our favorites and we’ve shared it through our network.

When we planned the conference in London, journalists like Monbiot (him included) were high on our list of people we wanted to build personal relationships with, to discuss what we agree on and respectfully debate what we don’t. We knew the caliber of speakers and participants would make for an incredible educational opportunity that would then allow them to responsibly educate their followers. We depend on a deeply educated public that can drive signals to food producers with their daily food purchase choices – that is what will shift agriculture, including the proper raising of livestock on grasslands. To that end, resources were shared with Monbiot via e-mail prior and after the interview with Allan Savory, from explanations and contextual responses to his concerns, to peer-reviewed papers that have observed whole operations being managed holistically, to the scientific rebuttals to the papers on which he bases his criticisms. None was reflected in his article.

However, this message is not intended to go after Monbiot, but to address some misunderstandings in The Guardian article that may shine light on the matter and help us all find common ground upon which to build opportunity.

Holistic Management Grassland

First off, the Savory Institute’s mission is centered on grasslands, not livestock. Grasslands are some of the most productive landscapes in the world and probably the least appreciated. For good reason, the world’s great grain growing regions are former grasslands, the deep soils of which formerly stored vast amounts of both carbon and water.

Healthy ecosystem function is highly dependent on the decaying processes. In places with year-round humidity and rainfall, like the UK, insects and microorganisms help break down grasses when their growing season has ended. However, in places with seasonal humidity and precipitation, like much of the rest of the world, grass plants still need a decaying mechanism. When it’s dry the microorganism and insect populations go dormant or, at the end of the wet season, die off. If left alone, the grasses will eventually turn grey, via chemical oxidation, under the sun. Unlike decay, this oxidation is so slow that old grass leaves are left standing, blocking out available sunlight to new growing points at ground level. If undisturbed these grasses can sit for decades, preventing any further growth and eventually dying.

Oxidized Grass

Humans have used burning as a tool to curb this since the decimation of the wild herds of herbivores that historically completed this cycle. This burning releases a staggering amount of greenhouse gasses and leaves the soil bare and subject to wind and water erosion. All life is impacted, above and below the ground.

Water BuffaloIn these dry, seasonally-humid climates when the large wild herds of ruminants grazed while constantly bunched and moving, ecosystem function was intact. It is the predator-prey relationship insight that Allan Savory articulated in the 1960’s that keeps the grazers bunched and moving and maintaining the health and diversity of grasslands. The gut of the ruminants acts as a portable source of humidity for billions of microbes that provide the function of biological decay. That is nature’s intelligence at work. The animals digest the grasses and return the vast majority of that biomass back to land enriched with microbes and nutrients transformed into readily usable forms to fertilize the land. These herds also trample grasses providing soil cover and creating the conditions for it to act as a sponge to both hold water and prevent runoff and evaporation, much the same way the mulch in a garden bed does. Because no grazer likes to feed on its own dung and urine, the

Bunched Ruminantsherd moves on, which minimizes the chance that plants will be overgrazed.  At our conference, Dr. Elaine Ingham explained with amazing detail what happens to soil life after a plant is grazed and left to recover. Healthy soils are formed, biological processes are kick-started and stimulated, and life thrives.

That does not imply, at all, that grazing and livestock are always good. We agree with Monbiot and many anti-livestock activists that most domesticated grazing has done tremendous damage to the landscape whether rotational or set-stock. And obviously industrialized CAFO meat production leaves a plethora of environmental disasters in its wake. So it is crucial, as Tony Lovell brilliantly put it in his address at the London conference, to distinguish livestock from properly managed livestock. Livestock is not the problem. It is how humans manage livestock that represent the problem – or the solution.

DonkeysThe vast amount of open space in the world is held and stewarded by people who depend on that land to make a living, largely from domestic livestock. Holistic Management is, at its core, a decision-making framework that addresses the financial and cultural needs of the people while simultaneously addressing the needs of the environment. If livestock are present we do not promote a formulaic grazing “system.” Rather, we use and teach a strategic and dynamic process, Holistic Planned Grazing that has been used successfully worldwide to enhance land productivity and health, while addressing the cash flow/profit needs and cultural contexts of managers.

Holistic Planned Grazing ChartGrazing systems are prescriptive. Holistic Planned Grazing plans the movement of livestock around a myriad of considerations such as needed plant and soil recovery periods, wildlife habitat needs, the protection of species during sensitive times in their lifecycle, water availability, livestock’s nutritional needs, management logistics, cash flow, social and cultural traditions and beliefs, quality of life, and so on. The Holistic Planned Grazing, Land Planning, Financial Planning, and Ecological Monitoring processes, used in unison with the Holistic decision-making framework help practitioners successfully manage the great complexity of their own contexts.

Monitoring GrasslandsLand holders are encouraged to collect as much data and photo points as possible to inform their management year after year, and to assume any decision they make that affects the environment is wrong. Then while assuming the decision is incorrect, identify the early warning indicators and observe, monitor, and then proactively make changes and replan based on those early observations and data gathered. These feedback loops have proved to be invaluable. Even people in places with year round precipitation and humidity like most of Britain have found that these methods and practices help them drastically increase their land’s production capabilities and achieve a multitude of ecological, financial and quality of life goals. It is all in the holistic decision making approach, and in the strategic planning and proactive on-going control and replanning.

Nature is incredibly complex and managing complexity is very difficult and something humans have yet to master. If you remove a spring or sprocket from a watch it will stop functioning until you replace the missing part. If you remove a species from a functioning community there will be unforeseen consequences, but the system will self organize at a lower level of complexity and resilience. See this animation to explore this further.

Monbiot’s article repeatedly brought up the need for additional peer-reviewed literature supporting Holistic Management. Science is really effective at studying single-variable adaptations but it is still evolving to be able to effectively study whole systems. It’s these soft systems, like ecology, education, policy, economics, health, agriculture and nutrition that create some real problems for scientists to address. This inevetible complexity is why so many studies in those fields often appear to generate results that contradict each other.

Science PanelWe do recognize the need for additional research and other evidence to show results of management across complex systems. We actively work with scientists who both look at single variables within the system as well as whole systems science. We had quite a few scientists at the London conference who we introduced to Monbiot via emails, who study everything from greenhouse gas emissions from livestock, to ecological health, soil science, climate change, social well-being, etc. And we do have peer-reviewed literature studying Holistic Management, but it’s typically case specific, since its implementation is going to vary in each specific scenario. The practice and outcomes of managing holistically are framed by the differences and nuances of context and its inherent dynamic nature makes it impossible to address questions of replicability with a “black or white” answer.

Soil SampleSavory Institute is using third party monitoring partners to capture baseline data and provide ongoing monitoring of ecological and social indicators in all of our project sites. We are eager to have solid data to inform our own learning and the learning and success of our community of practice, and also to inform our dialogues within larger efforts (such as UN Global Compact, FAO Agenda for Action or the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef) to create opportunities in the marketplace and to inform policy.

This important work now transcends Allan Savory. In fact we are proud to say that our network of thousands of practitioners, educators, and advocates around the world are the best voices to represent the outcomes of Savory’s insights on the land, and within their families, and their communities. Approximately 40 million acres (16 million hectares) are managed under this proactive management approach. Our conference in London had over 25 countries represented from every habitable continent. These are people that have experienced the outcomes of this work first hand on their own land, in their own lives, in their own finances.

In recent years Savory Institute has developed and implemented a strategy to scale and accelerate the teaching and learning of Holistic Management and successful contextual implementation through a global network of affiliated “Hubs” that are locally led and managed in regions around the globe. Hub leaders have demonstration sites, provide training, consultation, implementation support, and monitoring services to local land managers – from commercial ranchers to nomadic pastoralists.. It has been a very successful journey so far, and we now have Hubs established in Sweden, Spain, Turkey, Kenya (multiple), Zimbabwe, South Africa, Argentina, Chile, Mexico (multiple), and the U.S. (multiple).

Savory Institute Hub Leaders

For example, the Savory Hub in Argentina has influenced and trained over 60 farmers and is impacting over 1.2 million hectares. The Hub in Chile is as successful, working with over 20 large-scale farms and impacting 400,000 hectares with Holistic Management. Both Hubs have great partners in The Nature Conservancy, providing additional conservation advice and research, and Patagonia Inc., providing access to market incentives.

We are looking forward to soon have a Hub in the UK and are in conversations with some interested producers, including a young entrepreneurial farmer with a diversified livestock and cropping operation. If you’re interested in becoming a Hub, in any region of the world, Learn More and Apply Here. The incredible support of HRH Prince of Wales and other key influencers in the region have opened up some rich conversations and very promising opportunities in the region as well. Maybe Monbiot will have a chance to see with his own eyes in the near future the results of managing holistically.

We would love to invite Monbiot and all interested folks to visit our project sites or Hubs around the world, and always love to suggest the Africa Centre for Holistic Management in Zimbabwe, our first accredited Hub. It is Allan Savory’s home where they’ve been managing holistically for many years with remarkable results, amidst tremendous social and political challenges.  Wildlife populations have exploded and species that had left the property have now returned en masse. All under increased stocking rates of properly managed livestock, and the resulting enhanced ecosystem function. Nearby villagers have been trained and are now using the same decision making framework to create the types of lives they desire, and seeing hope for a better quality of life, food on their plates, and the survival of their culture.

In regards to critics like Monbiot, we could spend a lifetime arguing about our differences in opinions but there is too much work to be done, and time is running out. The world is ripe with opportunity for collaboration. Rather than throw stones and point fingers we are committed to finding ways to work together – to help people regenerate landscapes and build in resilience for future generations.

We look forward to continuing the conversation.

Environmental & Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian View

edited by

Dr Jimmy T (Gunny) LaBaume

Is now available in both PAPERBACK and Kindle

BookCoverImageMurray N. Rothbard was the father of what some call Radical Libertarianism or Anarcho-Capitalism which Hans-Hermann Hoppe described as “Rothbard’s unique contribution to the rediscovery of property and property rights as the common foundation of both economics and political philosophy, and the systematic reconstruction and conceptual integration of modern, marginalist economics and natural-law political philosophy into a unified moral science: libertarianism.”

This book applies the principles of this “unified moral science” to environmental and natural resource management issues.

The book started out life as an assigned reading list for a university level course entitled Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian View.

As I began to prepare to teach the course, I quickly saw that there was a plethora of textbooks suitable for universal level courses dealing with environmental and natural resource economics. The only problem was that they were all based in mainstream neo-classical (or Keynesian) theory. I could find no single collection of material comprising a comprehensive treatment of environmental and natural resource economics based on Austrian Economic Theory.

However, I was able to find a large number of essays, monographs, papers delivered at professional meetings and published from a multitude of sources. This book is the result. It is composed of a collection of research reports and essays by reputable scientists, economists, and legal experts as well as private property and free market activists.

The book is organized into seven parts: I. Environmentalism: The New State Religion; II. The New State Religion Debunked; III. Introduction to Environmental and Natural Resource Economics; IV. Interventionism: Law and Regulation; V. Pollution and Recycling; VI. Property Rights: Planning, Zoning and Eminent Domain; and VII. Free Market Conservation. It also includes an elaborate Bibliography, References and Recommended Reading section including an extensive Annotated Bibliography of related and works on the subject.

The intellectual level of the individual works ranges from quite scholarly to informed editorial opinion.

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Posted in Private Property and Free Markets, Private Property Rights, Savory Grazing Method, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

VIDEO: OVERVIEW OF UT HB 149 (2014)

Here is some interesting (and possibly useful) information that made me wonder how much more complicated can life possibly get? — jtl

This past year, UT passed a bill (HB149) that clarifies the jurisdiction of law enforcement officers on federal lands.  This important issue is often misunderstood and is explained well here by The County Seat TV: via The American Lands Council

This is an excerpt of The County Seat. This and other complete episodes can be viewed at TheCountySeat.TV.

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A Handbook for Ranch ManagersA Handbook for Ranch Managers.  In keeping with the “holistic” idea that the land, the livestock, the people and the money should be viewed as a single integrated whole: Part I deals with the management of the natural resources. Part II covers livestock production and Part III deals with the people and the money. Not only would this book make an excellent basic text for a university program in Ranch Management, no professional ranch manager’s reference bookshelf should be without it. It is a comprehensive reference manual for managing the working ranch. The information in the appendices and extensive bibliography alone is worth the price of the book.

Planned Grazing: A Study Guide and Reference ManualPlanned Grazing: A Study Guide and Reference Manual. This is the ideal squeal to A Handbook for Ranch Managers.  Although the ecological principles remain the same, what was originally known as “The Savory Grazing Method” now answers to a multitude of different names: ranching for profit, holistic management, managed grazing, mob grazing, management intensive grazing, etc. Land & Livestock International, Inc. uses “Restoration Grazing” under its “Managing the Ranch as a Business” program.” No mater what you call it, this summary and synopsis will guide you step by step through the process and teach you how to use it as it was originally intended. No more excuses for failing to complete your grazing plans.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Colorado voters to weigh in on GMO food labeling

by  via Canadian Cattlemaen

Photo: sxc.hu

Reuters — Colorado voters in November will have their say on a proposition that would require labels on foods that contain genetically modified ingredients (GMOs).

Proponents of GMO labeling initiatives, who say they have the right to know what is in their food, have been gaining steam in the U.S. Their wins have come despite well-funded opposition from GMO crop backers ranging from PepsiCo to Monsanto who say GMOs are safe, labels will confuse consumers and switching to non-GMO ingredients would significantly increase the cost of food.

Colorado’s Secretary of State on Wednesday confirmed supporters submitted enough valid signatures to get the GMO labeling measure, which will be Proposition 105, on the Nov. 4 ballot.

“If GMOs are safe, as companies say, then why not label them on food?” Right to Know Colorado campaign Chair Larry Cooper said on Thursday.

GMOs were introduced to the public in the 1990s. More than 90 per cent of U.S. corn, canola, soybean and sugar beets are GMO and those ingredients are widely used in U.S. food production in everything from snack foods and soups to strawberry-flavoured milk. Organic foods do no contain GMOs.

GMO crop developers and their supporters say genetically modified crops have been overwhelmingly proven safe.

That has done little to quell a backlash from consumers and critics, who call for independent research on the impacts of GMOs on human health and the environment.

Vermont in May became the first U.S. state to mandate labeling of GMO foods. As expected, industry groups representing U.S. food makers are challenging that law.

Oregon also will have a GMO labeling initiative on its November ballot.

Dozens of other states have considered similar measures this year. The effort failed in California, where massive spending by GMO labeling opponents led to a stinging defeat in 2012.

Connecticut and Maine already have passed laws that would go into effect if other northeastern states approve similar legislation.

With much at stake, the developers of genetically modified crops and the US$360 billion U.S. packaged food industry have taken their fight to the nation’s capital, where they are pushing for passage of a bill in Congress that would nullify any state law to require labeling of GMO foods.

Some U.S. companies already have opted to label GMOs or eliminate them from their supply chain.

Natural and organic grocer Whole Foods Markets has announce that it will require all products sold in its U.S. and Canadian stores to carry a GMO label by 2018. Burrito seller Chipotle Mexican Grill has removed virtually all GMOs from its supply chain. And, after a push from consumers, General Mills said it would reformulate its “yellow box” Cheerios to remove GMOs.

– Lisa Baertlein reports on retail and foodservice businesses for Reuters from Los Angeles. Additional reporting for Reuters by Carey Gillam in Kansas City

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The Betrayed: On Warriors, Cowboys and Other MisfitsThe Betrayed: On Warriors, Cowboys and Other Misfits. Although woven around the experiences and adventures of one man, this is also the story of the people who lived during the period of time in American history that an entire generation was betrayed It is the story of the dramatically changing times in which this personal odyssey took place. It is the story of thebetrayal of an entire generation of Americans and particularly the 40% (of the military aged males) of that generation that fought the Vietnam war.

Combat Shooter's Handbook Combat Shooter’s Handbook. Call for a pizza, a cop, and an ambulance and see which one arrives first. So, who does that leave to protect you, your life, property and family? The one and only answer is: YOU This Handbook is intended to help you exercise that right and meet that responsibility. Available in both paperback and Kindle versions.

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Posted in Food and Fiber Issues | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Book Release Announcement: Environmental Economics

Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian View

edited by

Dr Jimmy T (Gunny) LaBaume

Is now available in both PAPERBACK and Kindle

BookCoverImageMurray N. Rothbard was the father of what some call Radical Libertarianism or Anarcho-Capitalism which Hans-Hermann Hoppe described as “Rothbard’s unique contribution to the rediscovery of property and property rights as the common foundation of both economics and political philosophy, and the systematic reconstruction and conceptual integration of modern, marginalist economics and natural-law political philosophy into a unified moral science: libertarianism.”

This book applies the principles of this “unified moral science” to environmental and natural resource management issues.

The book started out life as an assigned reading list for a university level course entitled Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian View.

As I began to prepare to teach the course, I quickly saw that there was a plethora of textbooks suitable for universal level courses dealing with environmental and natural resource economics. The only problem was that they were all based in mainstream neo-classical (or Keynesian) theory. I could find no single collection of material comprising a comprehensive treatment of environmental and natural resource economics based on Austrian Economic Theory.

However, I was able to find a large number of essays, monographs, papers delivered at professional meetings and published from a multitude of sources. This book is the result. It is composed of a collection of research reports and essays by reputable scientists, economists, and legal experts as well as private property and free market activists.

The book is organized into seven parts: I. Environmentalism: The New State Religion; II. The New State Religion Debunked; III. Introduction to Environmental and Natural Resource Economics; IV. Interventionism: Law and Regulation; V. Pollution and Recycling; VI. Property Rights: Planning, Zoning and Eminent Domain; and VII. Free Market Conservation. It also includes an elaborate Bibliography, References and Recommended Reading section including an extensive Annotated Bibliography of related and works on the subject.

The intellectual level of the individual works ranges from quite scholarly to informed editorial opinion.

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Posted in Book Ads, Book Reviews | Tagged , | Leave a comment

PETA video relied on fear-mongering tactics

A couple of things need to be noted. First, the PETA ilk do not give two hoots in hell about cruelty to animals. Their sole focus and mission is politics. Second, they have no respect for private property. What this operator does is none of their business. They were trespassing when they took their video and need to be charged, convicted and punished for criminal trespass. — jtl, 419

via The Mountaineer

The PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) video taken at a small Haywood County dairy farm and released last week is the latest prop being used to advance the animal rights organization’s agenda.

It is an agenda that is pretty clear and prominently displayed on the organization website: “Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way.”

While it is to be expected that promotional events and materials would illustrate points that underscore its mission, it shouldn’t be expected that misinformation would be widely circulated.

That appears to be the case with the dairy video released by the organization last week.

PETA claimed the cattle were emaciated and forced to remain in a several-inch deep pool of their own waste. However, the Haywood County Animal Control department found that cattle were pastured in a clean area next to the barn and a pasture across the road when they weren’t being milked. There was no evidence the cattle were either emaciated or in poor health, said animal control officer Jean Hazzard, a county official who has come down hard on those who abuse animals in the past.

In an email Hazzard wrote, “I have responded to the dairy and met with the owner and reviewed the alleged deplorable confinement and living conditions, which were unfounded.”

The news release also claimed that regional grocer Harris Teeter was receiving milk from the dairy — a fact the grocer denied and demanded to be retracted.

PETA also urged consumers to reconsider using dairy products, and instead switch to soy or almond milk, suggesting the conditions they found on an impromptu visit created health safety issues for consumers.

That, too, was something the N.C. Department of Agriculture inspectors found to be untrue. The state inspection sheet lists 73 separate items included on any dairy farm inspection that must be followed to safely provide milk to consumers. Of all the requirements, the dairy was found deficient in only two areas.

Environmental regulators came down harder on the farm, issuing six notices of violation, most of which involved the way animal waste was handled.

While problems were spotted at the farm, they were ones that can — and are being — corrected.

It is unfortunate PETA resorted to false and exaggerated claims to make their point. In doing so, the organization has caused unwarranted damage to innocent parties and has undermined consumer confidence in our food supply without justification.

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The Essence of Liberty: Volume I: Liberty and History: The Rise and Fall of the Noble Experiment with Constitutionally Limited Government (Liberty and ... Limited Government) (Volume 1)The Essence of Liberty Volume I: Liberty and History chronicles the rise and fall of the noble experiment with constitutionally limited government. It features the ideas and opinions of some of the world’s foremost contemporary constitutional scholars. This is history that you were not taught at the mandatory government propaganda camps otherwise known as “public schools.” You will gain a clear understanding of how America’s decline and decay is really nothing new and how it began almost immediately with the constitution. Available in both paperback and Kindle versions.

The Essence of Liberty: Volume II (The Economics of Liberty)The Essence of Liberty Volume II: The Economics of Liberty will introduce the reader to the fundamental principles of the Austrian School of Economics. The Austrian School traces its origins back to the Scholastics of Medieval Spain. But its lineage actually began with Carl Menger and continued on through Adam Smith, Ludwig von Mises, Murray Rothbard and many others. It is the one and only true private property based, free market line of economic thought. Available in both paperback and Kindle versions.

The Essence of Liberty: Volume III: A Universal Philosophy of Political Economy (Liberty: A Universal Political Ethic) (Volume 3)The Essence of Liberty Volume III: Liberty: A Universal Political Ethic. This is the volume that pulls it all together. With reference to Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s description of Murray Rothbard’s work, it is a “unique contribution to the rediscovery of property and property rights as the common foundation of both economics and political philosophy, and the systematic reconstruction and conceptual integration of modern, marginalist economics and natural-law political philosophy into a unified moral science: libertarianism.” Available in both paperback and Kindle versions.

Posted in Animal Health, Animal Rights | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Call-to-Action to Submit Comments

You do not have to be a member of the Arizona Cattle Grower’s Association (or even live in Arizona) to submit comments on this very important to western ranchers issue. — jtl

ACGA LogoCall-to-Action to Submit Comments

Mexican Gray Wolf Update

Thank you to those who attended the hearing in Pinetop last week. Now, we need everyone else to come together and submit comments and letters to your local papers.

The Arizona Cattle Growers’ retained Norm James to submit an extensive set of comments late last year and have also worked closely with Arizona Game and Fish, Counties, Sportsman and other groups. The USFWS have completely ignored our comments and are pandering to the environmentalists.

ACGA has again retained Norm James to submit yet another set of comments. ACGA is working with an extensive coalition again which includes agencies, counties and coalition to best position ourselves in the battle against the USFWS.

We encourage members to do the following:

  1. Submit comments about your operation and the impacts it may have. Deadline to submit is September 23, 2014.
  2. Write letters to the editor for your local paper about how USFWS is destroying rural communities. See example from Roger & Sandra Warner and Arizona Game & Fish

Talking points:

  • USFWS is expanding the program 10 fold and have not scientifically or otherwise justified the need for expansion.
  • USFWS has failed to reach any goals from the 1982 recovery plan for 16 years it is time to shut down this horrible government experiment.
  • USFWS is making a mockery out of the public process required by NEPA. They have ignored comments by credible sources and other government agencies.
  • USFWS is ripping at the fabric of rural Arizona and is forcing more broken policy onto citizens on top of a failed program.
  • We do not need an expanded recovery area and we do not need more wolves.
  • We need a true and reliable compensation program that will keep ranchers in business and properly deal with nuisances’ wolves.

ACGA Wolf Policy

7-18-2014- Mexican Gray Wolf

Whereas, the Mexican Gray Wolf Recovery Program is a failure

Therefore be it resolved:

  1. The Mexican wolf program should be terminated, and that if the existing Mexican Wolf Program is not terminated, it should at the very least cap the wolf population at 100 individuals as set forth in the 1982 Recovery Plan and that, upon reaching that number, the wolf population should be kept at 100 or less.
  2. That the wolf reintroduction area should not be expanded nor should new wolf releases occur in any area without the agency completing NEPA;
  3. The wolf program shall be administered by the state wildlife agencies and fully funded by the federal government.
  4. Livestock producers shall be adequately compensated for all damages associated with the implementation of the wolf recovery program.
  5. All wolves straying out of the recovery area need to be captured and returned to the recovery area and that those engaging in predation on livestock must be promptly and permanently eliminated.

Submit Comments to EPA on WOTUS

The EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recently proposed an expansion of their federal authority over “waters of the U.S.” The agencies have proposed to redefine the definition of “Waters of the United States,” and that new definition would require cattle ranchers to get the permission of the federal government anytime they needed to expand, do maintenance, or perform routine activities like driving a tractor through a pasture. Almost all activities on our open land will now touch a “water of the United States” under the expanded definition.

 

Arizona Water Protection Fund
Review & Submit Comments

The Arizona Water Protection Fund (AWPF) is a competitive state grant program that provides money to interested parties for maintaining, enhancing and restoring river and riparian resources throughout Arizona, including projects that benefit fish and wildlife that are dependent on these important resources. The distribution of grant funds from the AWPF is authorized pursuant to A.R.S. § 45-2101 et seq. and is overseen by the Arizona Water Protection Fund Commission (Commission). The program is administered through the Arizona Department of Water Resources (ADWR).

The Commission recently closed out the FY2014 Grant Cycle by awarding grant funds to a variety of projects around the state which will advance the stated mission of the Fund.  In preparation for the upcoming FY2015 Grant Cycle the Commission would like to review the current application process and funding priorities.  Therefore, we are soliciting comments from landowners, state agencies, local government entities, non-profit organizations, agricultural producers, and the general public about the current AWPF grant process.

For the most recent version of the WPF application, past grant award reporting, and other detailed information pertaining to the program please go to www.azwpf.gov.

Please send your comments electronically or in writing by October 31, 2014 to:

Arizona Water Protection Fund

3550 N Central Avenue

Phoenix, AZ 85012

sasmallhouse@azwater.gov

Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian View by Dr Jimmy T (Gunny) LaBaume

KINDLE VERSION NOW AVAILABLE

PAPERBACK VERSION COMING SOON

BookCoverImageMurray N. Rothbard was the father of what some call Radical Libertarianism or Anarcho-Capitalism which Hans-Hermann Hoppe described as “Rothbard’s unique contribution to the rediscovery of property and property rights as the common foundation of both economics and political philosophy, and the systematic reconstruction and conceptual integration of modern, marginalist economics and natural-law political philosophy into a unified moral science: libertarianism.”

This book applies the principles of this “unified moral science” to environmental and natural resource management issues.

The book started out life as an assigned reading list for a university level course entitled Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian View.

As I began to prepare to teach the course, I quickly saw that there was a plethora of textbooks suitable for universal level courses dealing with environmental and natural resource economics. The only problem was that they were all based in mainstream neo-classical (or Keynesian) theory. I could find no single collection of material comprising a comprehensive treatment of environmental and natural resource economics based on Austrian Economic Theory.

However, I was able to find a large number of essays, monographs, papers delivered at professional meetings and published from a multitude of sources. This book is the result. It is composed of a collection of research reports and essays by reputable scientists, economists, and legal experts as well as private property and free market activists.

The book is organized into seven parts: I. Environmentalism: The New State Religion; II. The New State Religion Debunked; III. Introduction to Environmental and Natural Resource Economics; IV. Interventionism: Law and Regulation; V. Pollution and Recycling; VI. Property Rights: Planning, Zoning and Eminent Domain; and VII. Free Market Conservation. It also includes an elaborate Bibliography, References and Recommended Reading section including an extensive Annotated Bibliography of related and works on the subject.

The intellectual level of the individual works ranges from quite scholarly to informed editorial opinion.

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Posted in Endangered Species Act, Mexican Wolf, Radical Environmentalism, Water | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Who-d a-thunk it? Game ranching and private ownership of wildlife for hunting, tourism and meat are saving rhinos, etc.

Well duh! That legally secure private property rights is the foundation for economic prosperity and development used to be a fundamental idea in our society and culture. It was even taught in the public’s schools. Suddenly I woke up and realized that, little by little over the years, it has become an alien concept–even unknown amongst the current generation. All the more reason to educate your children at home. — jtl, 419

Who-d a-thunk it? Game ranching and private ownership of wildlife for hunting, tourism and meat are saving rhinos, etc.  via aei-ideas.org

There’s a pretty interesting and stark contrast between two completely different approaches to saving wildlife in Africa (rhinos, elephants, lions, leopards and African buffaloes, etc.): a) ban the private ownership and all commercialization of wildlife except for eco-tourism vs. b) allow the private ownership of wildlife and legalize commercial activities relating to wildlife like private game ranching. Most African countries like Kenya take the first approach – individuals are not allowed to own or profit commercially from wildlife. A change in South Africa’s law in 1991 legalizing private ownership of wildlife and private game ranching provides a natural experiment to compare the two approaches.

A recent Bloomberg article provides these details:

1. South Africa’s private game-ranching is a $1.1 billion a year industry and growing at 10 percent annually. Foreign hunters, about 60 percent of whom came from the U.S., spent $118.1 million on licenses to hunt in South Africa in 2012.

2. Private game ranches have increased fivefold to 10,000 since South Africans were allowed to own and profit commercially from wild animals. The game ranches cover 20 million hectares, or about 16 percent of the country’s land.

So what’s happen to the number of wild animals in South Africa?

3. The private game industry is largely responsible for boosting the country’s large mammal population to 24 million, the most since the 19th century, and up from 575,000 in the early 1960s. For example, South Africa now has more than 20,000 white rhinos, 80 percent of the world’s total, up from 1,800 in 1968 when limited hunting was first introduced.

4. South Africa’s law change has also led to a commercial trade in wild animals with captive-bred species ranging from sable antelope to wildebeest sold at wildlife auctions.

And what about the situation in Kenya?

5. Kenya has lost 80 percent of its wildlife since it banned hunting in 1977 and large-mammal numbers are declining by 4.2 percent a year. The country’s elephant population has dropped 76 percent since the 1970s, while rhinos are down 95 percent.

MP: As counter-intuitive and paradoxical as it might seem, the best way to save African elephants, lions, leopards and rhinos from extinction is to kill them and eat them – in limited numbers of course. That is, by allowing private ownership and game ranching in South Africa, wild animals like the rhino have a commercial value that naturally results in greater conservation and protection efforts (“sustainability”) than in countries like Kenya, where wildlife naturally and predictably decline in numbers as victims of the “tragedy of the commons.”

As Steven Landsburg reminds us in The Armchair Economist, “Most of economics can be summarized in four words: People respond to incentives. The rest is commentary.” It shouldn’t be surprising then that wild animals are increasing in numbers in South Africa and decreasing in Keyna – private property rights, commercial use, market pricing, and the profit motive are the incentives that make all the difference in the world.

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A Handbook for Ranch ManagersA Handbook for Ranch Managers.  In keeping with the “holistic” idea that the land, the livestock, the people and the money should be viewed as a single integrated whole: Part I deals with the management of the natural resources. Part II covers livestock production and Part III deals with the people and the money. Not only would this book make an excellent basic text for a university program in Ranch Management, no professional ranch manager’s reference bookshelf should be without it. It is a comprehensive reference manual for managing the working ranch. The information in the appendices and extensive bibliography alone is worth the price of the book.

Planned Grazing: A Study Guide and Reference ManualPlanned Grazing: A Study Guide and Reference Manual. This is the ideal squeal to A Handbook for Ranch Managers.  Although the ecological principles remain the same, what was originally known as “The Savory Grazing Method” now answers to a multitude of different names: ranching for profit, holistic management, managed grazing, mob grazing, management intensive grazing, etc. Land & Livestock International, Inc. uses “Restoration Grazing” under its “Managing the Ranch as a Business” program.” No mater what you call it, this summary and synopsis will guide you step by step through the process and teach you how to use it as it was originally intended. No more excuses for failing to complete your grazing plans.

Posted in Exotics, Government Interventionism, Private Property Rights | Leave a comment
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