The forecast regarding Baltimore and the rest of the planet today and where it will be in the near future is gloomy. Biologists, as well as climate and environment scientists, have raised concerns over the loss of biodiversity, the poor state of the nutrient cycles and the unchecked climate change that is slowly snuffing out the planet’s life. The experts from various fields have worried that things will soon reach the tipping point where there are no means of recovery.
The agricultural sector has played a hand putting things where they are currently. The use of pesticides, herbicides and excess fertilizers has poisoned flora and fauna. Moreover, poor farming methods and the rampant deforestation to create farmlands is contributing to soil erosion. CO2 emissions are exasperating the situation.
Hemp or cannabis sativa is a plant cultivated by different people in Asia, Europe and other parts of the world. It has been cultivated for millennia for medicinal and recreational purposes. The proper utilization of the hemp plant can provide answers to some of the issues mentioned above.
The use of herbicides and pesticides poses significant problems to the environment; they are poisoning plants and animals in their millions globally with overuse of these products is to blame. Some of these chemicals may not kill the plants or animals instead they accumulate in them and are passed up the food chain. For instance, the poisoned insects will be eaten by bird or rodents causing them to fall ill and die.
Many of the hemp products in the market are organic with the few that are not certified organic have been produced with the use of minimal amounts of herbicides or pesticides. Fortunately, the hemp is a hardy and resilient plant that even grown in dense thicket snuffing the life of any other species of plants that dares compete with it for the surrounding resources. The hemp will grow rapidly shading out other plants and its roots will also out-do those of other nearby plants. It has hairy structures on its tips that produce aromatic compounds that deter insects and grazers. As such, the hemp is self-sufficient and will not require the need for herbicides or pesticides.
Enhancing the fertility of the soil may be necessary when planting hemp on large scale, but it will not require a large volume of artificial fertilizers. The industrious man of today has been busy using synthetic nitrates and phosphates to increase farm yields to the detriments of the plant’s nutrient cycle. Such money-driven ambitions have caused significant disparity in the nutrient levels of soils in various parts of the world. The subsequent result of this is the loss of natural habitats leading to loss of life therein loss of biodiversity. The over-depends on fertilizers is also a contributor to climate change.
It Protects the Soil
According to the UN, the unchecked soil erosion and land degradation have left the plant without around 50 – 60 years of meaningful food production. The lack of artificial fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides that find their way to the ground means the soil remains unadulterated. Moreover, the hemp has broad and extensive roots that firmly grip the earth and reducing soil erosion. The plant’s foliage also places a useful role in intercepting falling rain and breaks winds thus protecting the soil. And since the grazers will not eat the hemp and ploughing is at a minimal when farming hemp, soil loss is reduced.
It’s a Carbon Sink
Due to climate change, most cities of the world will be underwater as sea levels rise. Subsequently, many plants and animals will become extinct, and the loss of life will be significant. That bleak future is all thanks to the high amount of carbon dioxide released into the environment to man’s greed. The hemp as an answer to this issue. It, like every other plant, uses carbon dioxide to make its foods and in turn produces oxygen. The depends on carbon dioxide for food products means that we can harvest its seeds and fibers and even extract oils that we can use for various purposes. As such, the hemp plays a vital role in reducing greenhouse gases and reserving climate change.
A Green Superfood
Avocado, goji berries, quinoa, and chia seeds are considered ‘superfoods’ due to their amazing health benefits and the fact that they have a substantial amount of essential nutrients not found in other food sources. Thehempis also among this category of ‘superfoods.’ The unfortunate thing about these plants is that they are also regarded as terrible for the environment thus only cultivated in particular parts of the world. For instance, quinoa is farmed in the mountains of Bolivia as a staple food; its supply is limited globally hence the high price given the increased demand for quinoa in the west. The avocado is yet another food whose global production is low and restricted to a few parts of the world. Its low supplies are why drug cartels are making huge profits from the distribution and sale of avocados across the South Americas.
Hemp is rich in omega – 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids as well as other essential micronutrients that are known to support brain development. The plant can be cultivated in many parts of the world, and this can have a place in the ongoing battle against the climate change ravaging Baltimore and the rest of the planet. The daily use of hemp products can provide us with hard-to-get nutrients.