There is an interesting and thought-provoking quote from Masanobu Fukuoka, a Japanese farmer and philosopher renowned for his natural farming, that is quite pertinent to climate resiliency. The author of The One Straw Revolution, Fukuoka states, “It was in an American desert that I suddenly realized that rain does not fall from the heavens – it comes up from the ground. Desert formation is not due to the absence of rain, but the rain ceases to fall because the vegetation has disappeared.”
This quote from Fukuoka solidified what we have been observing and noting for many years: The vast majority of deserts globally were not always deserts. Most were once-thriving grasslands and forests that, through mismanagement by man, have become deserts. This is certainly true of North Africa, the Southwestern U.S. and much of Mexico.
Epic droughts, wildfires so intense that they create their own weather and tragic flooding are all a part of our own creation—by failing to properly manage or steward what we have been blessed with. Soils that cannot infiltrate and retain water lead to either flooding or drought, and in many cases both. In the Western U.S. in 2021, we have seen extreme and exceptional drought, coupled with cloudbursts that caused massive erosion--resulting in drought-to-flooding conditions in mere hours.