The founder of the Leipzig palm startup and Urban Greening Camp for greening and vertical farming developed a world innovation to improve urban habitats. This innovation called ‘Energy Storage Tree‘ can reduce costs of tree planting in cities and generally make urban greening more efficient and cost-effective. It involves innovative, mobile, modular, energy- and water-saving raised bed systems. Extensive concepts have been developed for initial energy storage raised bed systems. These mobile and modular raised bed systems for sustainable recreation, energy and water storage will make urban regions, large cities, small towns but also rural areas more livable. In fact, the raised beds can also be placed in village squares, tram or train stations and bus stops. Several innovations are combined in one general raised bed system and charging station. Energy and water storage enables sustainable and environmentally friendly operation. Ecological components, durability and low maintenance allows very efficient and long operation for decades – at least with minor corrections or repairs every few years. More details on the most important points will follow on the social and project pages. A comprehensive description of the basic concept and the standard variant were already published in August 2021.
The raised bed system is an energy storage station, a space or place to relax and recharge the batteries. The raised bed is equipped with small-growing tree species up to 5m. The special construction and processing of weather-resistant woods allow a long standing time, of course, it varies depending on the stand and location. The stability is increased by extra reinforced outer walls and inner walls with squared lumber in the corners, it is just taken usual measures for stabilization as it is common for raised bed construction. Due to the scalability, it can also be planted with many flowers, bushes, herbs and special shrubs or larger trees. The raised bed provides enough space and sufficient watering for the plants to grow well, also by good energy and atmosphere.
The standard dimensions for the standard design of the basic raised bed construction is 1.20×1.20×1.20m. The minimum basic or standard equipment consists of a mobile raised bed with foldable, robust and weather-resistant wooden benches or painted chipboard. If possible, the woods are treated with ecological or environmentally friendly varnishes or oils. The benches have a small angle of inclination towards the raised bed, so that rainwater can flow into the raised bed through latticed openings. All the inner sides of the raised bed are lined with pond liner and there are holes at the bottom as is common with large pots or planters. Below the raised bed there is an extra tray to catch rainwater. Excess water can drain down the side via drains a few inches above the bottom tray to prevent waterlogging in the raised bed, but at the same time water is available at the bottom for larger plants such as trees or shrubs. The lower compartment is accessible, the water can be drained at any time via a closable drain or water can be taken out for watering. The lowest side of the raised bed is extra reinforced with a solid plate, and is attached with rotating rollers with platforms made of metal or steel. Alternatively, a prefabricated rolling board can be attached at the bottom. These constructions provide extra stability and tilting of the raised bed becomes very unlikely, even with the simple standard variant, the raised bed stands firmly and stably. Due to the weight of the tree and the soil, the benches can be well loaded.
The extended standard variant contains three water reservoirs in the outer walls. One side has closable openings and extra compartments, the spaces between them are about 10-25cm wide, depending on the variant. The dimensions as well as designs are generally variable. Wide, high, rectangular or square raised beds can be made. Wide raised beds are suitable for shallow rooted plants and high ones for deep rooted plants. The benches or solar benches are set at about 50-60cm, so all people regardless of size can sit comfortably. Depending on the application, budget and location, smaller or larger raised bed systems are possible. Various casters can be attached or even replaced at the bottom of the solid top, depending on weight and size. Casters with locks and stoppers are available, or no casters for permanent and long-term installations. More details and sketches are in the utility model, concept and design papers.
Modular functions of the mobile raised bed allow a wide variation and a lot of additional applications. Lockable compartments and flaps provide access to spaces on the sides, for example, to perform cleaning, remove drains or add special fertilizer, mineral and water mixtures. The idea of give and take is harmoniously combined with the raised bed system. The spaces for the water storage tanks and lockable compartments for the modules are easily accessible and watertight. The modules such as adapters, energy storage, climate station and measuring devices are interchangeable – the latter are good for analyzing the tree or other plants, for example. The data can be retrieved, various devices and e-bikes can be charged via adapters. An expansion of the raised bed to include a mobile climate station for the city and regional climate would be conceivable, so like a connection to the power grid. The raised bed system will support the transition towards climate-neutral, greener and smarter cities and urban habitats. Sustainability and environmental awareness is additionally trained by the raised bed. The raised beds are also a meeting point for young people, pupils and students to get inspired by nature-based solutions and ideas. The raised bed system encourages raised bed construction at universities, schools and in school gardens.
Background on the sustainable and ecological developments
Ecological and recycled materials are preferred for raised bed construction. Inexpensive variants can even be realized with simple pallets or chipboard. These are previously oiled, painted or impregnated, as well as lined with pond liner so that they last for many years.
It took months and years to develop, studying raised beds and urban trees from around the world. The basic idea was born in 2017 and matured during the last months, the main reason and intention from the beginning was to make city tree planting more affordable, because especially in western countries like Germany a planting of a city tree can cost up to 3000 euros or even more – worldwide the price in big cities is at least around 1000 dollars. This was also one of the reasons to develop a mobile raised bed system which can reduce the price worldwide to far below 1000 dollars, depending on the country and material costs even below 300!
A raised bed for trees can of course also be realized with used barrels, rain barrels or IBC containers. This is especially suitable for communities and cities with little money, similar to poor regions in Africa or places with great poverty and poor soils. For this purpose, trees can even be kept for a few years in large sturdy garbage bags, as is done in some nurseries or tree plantations in developing countries.
The pattern of the simple standard variant of the raised bed system serves as a model for all cities in the world and is at the same time a good example for public use. More efficient and sustainable greening, resources and energy use is possible in the long run with different variants of the energy storage raised bed system. There is also some space under the raised bed, for example for stones. The concept and some design variants have been further developed by the Urban Greening Network project developer and founder of the new Leipzig palm startup since 2020. In August, final designs and excerpts from the general concept were published on various platforms and made available to the international community.
The world’s first nursery and vertical farming startup for endangered tree species was started by the Leipzig Palms and Urban Greening Camp project. The urban gardening company is connected with the scientific and private project for vertical farming. It is an ongoing project development until we expand into bigger halls of the building and start with the urban farming facilities for special herbs and vegetables. First we have to test a lot of vertical farming and lighting systems. We will keep you updated here and on the other official pages and channels.
There are also good news during the crisis, such as the creation of a successful startup for urban greening, green and clean technologies combined with innovation and knowledge management. Urban agriculture and vertical farming as well as plant cultivation with hydroponics is traded by futurologists as the future of agriculture. This was also a reason to develop an extra Urban Greening Camp in Leipzig years ago and to build it up since 2020. In the run-up, the first tree and plant species have already been cultivated, including particularly endangered species. Herbs and medicinal plants will be cultivated in further grow rooms which are in preparation. There is actual no vertical farming company worldwide who combines biodiversity conservation, urban farming, tree cultivation and species protection. It is also a model project and pilot for various innovative developments — for a more ecological farming and sustainable forestry worldwide, we call it Ecosystem Restoration Systems. #ecorestorsys
The greening camps will cultivate many native plants and important trees for agriculture and forestry. Cities will be supplied through home improvement stores and garden centers. The camps will simultaneously serve education and training, development and research. Urban and vertical farming is being taken very seriously in some major Asian cities, and complete greenhouse buildings (Urban / Vertical Farming Towers) are even being planned. With sufficient support, we can also realize a vertical greenhouse over several floors in Leipzig. The Urban Greening Camp will not only cultivate plants under artificial light, but also with direct daylight. Innovative solutions and developments in the field of aquaponics, hydroponics and optics will be developed and tested – barrels, canisters and water tanks are already available. A suitable building has already been occupied, and initial talks have been held with the owner. It is not just about endangered tree species, vegetables or a few herbs, but about professional greenhouse facilities, storage and logistic systems – which are also needed for some important species conservation projects. The Urban Greening Camp is a center for biodiversity and species conservation, not only locally or regionally but internationally! Many species conservationists, conservation organizations, botanists, botanical gardens and environmentalists have already been informed and invited. Berlin and Leipzig has many flat roofs, these should be used much more for rooftop greening and roof gardens.
The Urban Greening Camp and Leipzig Palm Project is a platform for cultural, socio-economic and scientific exchange, online as well as directly on site. Active participants are welcome to join the innovative developments and projects. The garden market and tree nursery will cultivate not only palms, but also other important plants such as herbs, ethnobotanical and medicinal plants. Endangered tree species and important flowering plants for bees are also in the program. Permaculture, urban farming, community and urban gardening are not just trendy terms, they are global movements that can make cities more livable and environmentally friendly. In principle, the allotment garden movement which started with the poor gardens and allotments in the 19th century is the first urban gardening movement. For years we have been supporting the movement and cities on urban greening issues. Kindergartens, schools and universities also have the possibility to establish allotment gardens on their premises, talked with a lot of people about how to establish more horticulture, community and rooftop gardens in inner cities.
Since 2016, the founder of Greening Deserts has been developing projects such as the greening and research camps for sustainable reforestation, greening, green and clean technologies (cleantech and greentech). Species protection, climate protection, nature conservation, environmental protection and especially sustainable actions as well as economic activities are important tasks of the future ventures. Ecological education and environmentally conscious actions are also important points on the Global Greening Agenda developed by Oliver Caplikas together with colleagues from the EU and UN over the years. The international Greening Act and the new Green Deal have already been successfully implemented in some countries. It is about an honest and conscientious transformation of environmentally harmful economic sectors, the reduction of global overproduction and the improvement of consumption and environmental awareness of societies and the world population as a whole. That is why many innovative projects have been founded over the years, successful campaigns and initiatives have been carried out worldwide. Many people and organizations got inspired and followed the good example.
The crisis has set back some developments and projects, but brought others forward. Like the new Urban Greening project in Leipzig, which is currently focusing on innovative plant cultivation, storage and cooling systems – especially with regard to green building, sustainable architecture, energy storage and economical water management. All of this will be incorporated into future vertical farming solutions and systems that will be developed at the Urban Greening Camp. Solar, wind and water energy applications will play a crucial role. A research facility on a larger roof could show that green roofs and solar systems are possible at the same place and time, for which the Agrovoltaik project was founded. Another important topic is the education and increased promotion of facade solar systems, hydrogen energy storage, transparent solar technologies and Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWT). Very interesting in this context is the combination of highly efficient processes for hydrogen production from solar and wind energy. It is so innovative like facade greening and solar facades for cooling and heat storage. Energy efficiency and energy storage plays a special role in the urban cooling and urban greening process. Insulation materials made of hemp and hemp wood are further innovations that are being promoted particularly strongly in Canada and Austria. Germany should not lose touch in many respects.
The founder has informed many international institutions and universities about the potentials, especially in the field of building technology and energy storage solutions. In the future, buildings could be efficient energy storage devices and decentralized power plants; it is the future of a truly sustainable energy economy and more economical use of natural resources. Facade greening and photovoltaic facades can also protect against high heat and store heat. Urban greening in general can help cool cities and, of course, provides fresh air. More light-colored surfaces, such as lighter asphalt and concrete are also a good option; in New York and other cities, roofs have already been painted white to cool buildings. Greening cities and urban regions is key to urban cooling and thus global cooling.
We invite interested investors, strong partners and sponsors to join the further project development. In late summer, the first round and official meeting of interested parties will take place. Representatives of the city of Leipzig, Halle, Dresden, Berlin, Hamburg and other interested cities are also invited. We are looking forward to a successful start of the new startup and a greener future. Check also Greening Deserts other innovative projects like the Greenhouse and Recycling Ship! Together with other Startups we develop(ed) mobile greenhouse solutions so like greenhouse, solar and water containers which can collect and filter rainwater. We want to establish desalinization plants and applications for coastal greening and reforestation. Years ago we published some great concepts to use nature-based solutions like bamboo for loosen hard soils, to filter sea water and to improve the groundwater levels. @ #ecofarming #ecoforestry #ecorestorsys #greeningcoasts
Some more important points and summer updates:
The Leipzig Palms project and Urban Greening Camp is the world’s first nursery and vertical farming startup for indoor arboriculture and endangered tree species! Herbs and medicinal plants are cultivated in further grow rooms. We will use innovative cleantech, greentech and vertical farming techniques for tree cultivation and plant breeding of important plants.
There is no other vertical farming company worldwide who combines biodiversity, conservation, cleantech, greening, greentech, tree cultivation and urban farming. Welcome to the future of arboriculture!
The Urban Greening Camp, nursery and vertical farming startup for endangered tree species saving much energy, place, time, water and other resources by innovative management and real sustainable solutions.
The indoor farming startup in Leipzig works on the next room for critically endangered tree species, herbs and seed storage. Vertical farming will reach new dimensions with cleantech and greentech developments.
The vertical farming company office and workshop are connected with a large corridor to the other rooms and the main hall. The next room for critical endangered tree species is in progress. There are much more rooms, halls and floors in the building we can use in future – or we move to another similar building.
More classic and modern plant growing systems with good soils and substrates will be tested together with new grow lights and hydroponic systems. Manufacturers and sponsors are welcome to send us their products for testing and presentation.
We will test new light systems, not just LED, LEC, HID and CFL lights with optimal light for each plant or tree species and phases of growth — we call it the right light management. Lasers, robotics, sensors and webcams will improve the vertical farming results in future.
Big thanks to the colleagues from Max Planck Society, New York and Toronto University for showing some support during the years — thanks going also to all the other institutions and organizations who don’t ignored the information letter. To all interested parties, welcome on board! You are always welcome to visit the camp in future. Your friend of nature from Leipzig in Saxony, Germany. Oliver G. Caplikas
Since 2018, new records have been set in terms of droughts, hottest months and driest years in centuries. The drought, heat and pests have been affecting the forests more and more since 2019 and unfortunately there is no improvement in sight in 2020 either. In Germany there was the most severe forest damage in over 200 years. Fires and storms have greater effects, because of the large amount of damaged wood and the tree damage, there are more problems with pests and fungal attack. Fine dust and environmental toxins from agriculture give many plants and animals the rest, especially insects such as bees suffer from environmental destruction. Air pollution, insecticides and pesticides are not only a danger for bees, they also endanger many other species, especially in areas of agriculture and livestock farms. Many of the typical trees and forests in forestry are monocultures and conifers such as douglas firs, spruces, pines, larches and firs – unfortunately they do not offer much nectar. Almost 80 percent of the conifers were felled because of damage. At just under 70 percent, the proportion of damaged wood in 2019 was more than three times as high as in 2010. As already described in the article on the Leipzig Oak Park of Diversity project, even strong tree species such as oaks are affected. Whether from pests, powdery mildew or drought stress, the plants suffer very badly from drought. Like many deciduous trees, oaks are deep-rooted, which draw water from the lower soil layers. What they don’t need themselves, they release closer to the surface. This makes oak a good soil regulator, for example through its pronounced symbioses with microorganisms and fungi. Oaks and other robust trees suffer from climate change, as do many people and animals. Damage to trees and forests is not only caused by fire, drought and heat waves, but also by fungus, pests, snow breaks, storms, floods and environmental toxins – as well as air and water pollution.
There are around four billion hectares of forest on earth. There are around 60,000 tree species worldwide and over 10,000 of them are threatened with extinction. According to an assessment by the World Conservation Union (IUCN), more than half of European tree species are endangered. Of the approximately 450 tree species, 265 do not occur on any other continent. More than 150 species are threatened, 66 species are at the highest level of endangerment and therefore close to extinction. In total, more than 28,000 animal and plant species are listed as endangered worldwide. These are data and statistics from recent years and some of the figures are already out of date, especially after the massive droughts and forest fires. It can be assumed that many more species are now threatened and in some regions even extinct.
According to climate research, long-term studies and weather experts, extreme drought is becoming normal in Europe in summer. In spring there is also a lack of water for healthy plant growth in many places around the world. The soils and forests can hold less water because the important reservoirs are not only dried out but damaged, i.e. the storage capacity is reduced and in some cases reduced for years. If middle and deeper soil layers harden, humus layers decay to dust or are destroyed, even a lot of rain does not help at first. It then takes years of moderate rain and much plant growth until these soil layers are loosened and watered again. Trees, hedges and other plants that can form complex, strong and deep roots need a few years to loosen middle and deep soil layers. Many plants lose branches, leaves and fruit during a drought or extreme drought. The proportion of trees with significant crown thinning increased to about 35 percent in 2019. If the trees and plants are generally weakened, they are more susceptible to parasites and other pests such as bark beetles, jewel beetles and processionary moth. In most cases, the damaged wood cannot remain in the forest. Much of this wood is not suitable for wood processing or high-quality products for the construction and furniture industries. Often the only option left is to process it into inferior wood products such as chipboard or wood pellets. A lot of damaged wood has been coming onto the market since 2018 and the price of wood has collapsed dramatically, the forecasts for 2021 and 2022 do not look any better. There is currently so much wood per year that would normally be enough for three years or more. The forest and wood industries are recording massive losses, and even cheap oak is already being sold as firewood. Forest companies and forest owners will have to work for a long time to compensate and repair the damage of recent years.
Future challenges, conflicts, wars and crises because of the worldwide water availability and water supply
The water reserves in the soil are becoming increasingly scarce, the soils are becoming drier overall. It has been relatively dry in Germany since 2015. The past two years exceeded the previous record drought of 1976. At that time it was exceptionally dry for five years and some tree species were replaced or supplemented by drought-resistant species such as hornbeam, service tree and field maple. But the adaptation of forests to the crisis and forest restructuring makes no sense if the groundwater will levels sink, lakes, rivers and water reservoirs partially dry up. Dry periods in winter are also a big problem, because when there is no snow there is much less water due to the melting of snow. The problem has been known for a long time, for example the lack of water supply due to the disappearance of glaciers and large areas of snow or ice. When mountains and oceans absorb more sun, the planet heats up even faster, especially at the North Pole. Fires and very hot times in northern areas of Russia also accelerate the thawing of the permafrost soil. Similar to the largest share of the greenhouse gas methane from agriculture or livestock farming, methane is released by the decomposition of the thawed biomass. As this happens in a very short time, the atmosphere, biosphere and weather systems cannot simply compensate for this, resulting in extreme climate changes and an increase in extreme weather conditions. For some years now, climate researchers have been able to prove the connection between extreme drought and severe flooding. In the meantime, there have been several fires, droughts and floods of the century, not only in Germany and Europe – but unfortunately also in Africa, America, Asia and India.
According to various surveys, around 80 percent are very concerned about the persistent drought. In France, Poland, the Czech Republic and other European countries, the spring was marked by low rainfall this year. French forests are very much endangered by the drought years and the hot summer of 2019. It was one of the deadliest heat waves in all of Europe, killing thousands of humans. The harmful effects of the droughts can be clearly seen on satellite images, many brown and gray fields in Europe and many large cities such as Berlin are affected. It affects especially regions in the north and east, in principle all federal states are affected. The cities in particular need more greenery, as they can heat up much more as the surrounding area. What you see more and more often are dry meadows, trees and bushes. The parks and water areas are therefore just as important as the greening of roofs and facades. The soil moisture, the total groundwater level and the groundwater levels in different regions of Germany are too low, at least in relation to normal amounts of precipitation and water levels. In April 2020, there was far too little rainfall in almost all federal states; the states of Saxony-Anhalt, Saxony and Thuringia were particularly affected. The soil moisture in the topsoil and total soil is simply too little for many plants. Due to the lack of water available to plants, drought stress or water stress quickly occurs. The photosynthesis of the plants and the growth decrease. If the usable soil water continues to fall, plant water stress occurs and the plants begin to dry up.
The drought monitor of the Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research showed that the total soil in large parts of Germany was characterized by extreme to extraordinary drought in April and midsummer 2020. Similar to the drought monitor from the Environmental Research Center in Leipzig, there is also a research project in Switzerland called Drought CH or Trockenheit.ch, where information on the current situation is shown. The colleagues also summarize a lot of interesting data from the last few years. Such information is becoming more and more important, especially if conflicts over water resources increase in the future, whether in the energy industry for cooling or in agriculture for agricultural irrigation. It affects many European countries. If the water reserves become increasingly scarce, conflicts of use over water resources can be intensified considerably. The use of water, water resources and water management must become more economical or more sustainable so that there is not another water crisis in the next few years. Using ponds, water towers and underground water reservoirs to collect rainwater makes more and more sense, especially when you consider that around 80 percent of all irrigation throughout Germany is done with groundwater. An increasing demand for water from agriculture contrasts with other usage interests and problems, such as the public supply of drinking water, over 70 percent of which is obtained from groundwater. In addition, forests consume a lot of groundwater in dry times, this can affect rivers and other waters. The drought year 2018 and 2019 severely dried out many soils and water reservoirs, to compensate this it takes many years of rain above the usual annual average. Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Saxony-Anhalt and Saxony are the federal states with the lowest rainfall. Specific figures can be found on the relevant weather portals and statistics pages.
Forest dieback, desertification and expanding deserts in Europe
Due to the third year of drought in a row, there will also be considerable problems for the plant world in winter and spring 2020, as many soils and plants will not be able to recover so easily under these extreme conditions. The garden, park and forest maintenance is therefore more important than ever this year, every citizen should lend a hand in his spare time, even if it are just a few buckets of water for the tree in front of the door or some irrigation for bushes, hedges or trees at the streets. Unfortunately, awareness of sustainable use and the problem of water waste is still not taken seriously. The production of one kilo of beef requires around 15,000 liters of water, pork almost 6,000 and chicken 4,300 liters. The average water footprint in Germany is 3,900 liters per person per day. This figure includes the amount of water that is used for the production of consumed food and goods in one’s own country, but also the water that is needed, for example, for the manufacture of clothing or electrical appliances abroad. This also applies to ‘more ecological’ electric cars, which unfortunately are still made with a lot of coal, plastic and oil. The coal electricity for car production and rail traffic alone is astronomical.
2019 was the hottest year in the history of Europe, according to scientific findings, with the drought year 2018 and the drought summer 2020, it is now the worst drought in a row for 250 years. The droughts and heat waves of recent years clearly show that the climate crisis is having a significant impact on our lives, the environment, consumption and our economy. An adaptation of the plants to the more extreme climate occurs naturally, but should be supported and improved by sustainable strategies of climate change adaptation. This should not only apply to crops or to livestock, but also especially to endangered species. The selfish nature, way of life and work in certain areas of society and industry, such as fossil energy, monotonous agriculture and forestry, is harming the environment. Selfishness, ignorance and little will to change in the direction of sustainability, nature and environmental protection have produced a destructive chemical industry, energy industry, aviation, shipping, heavy industry, monoculture agriculture and monotonous forestry.
The biodiversity, soil and water quality have suffered extremely, valuable landscapes and habitats have been destroyed or have been lost due to rigorous greed for profit and environmental degradation. If things continue like this, even regardless of the climate crisis, there will soon be no more fertile land, only dust and desert. Greening Deserts Climate analyses and long-term studies, in coordination with international climate researchers and climate models, have repeatedly confirmed an increase in extreme weather conditions – even before the drought years or floods of the century, as in Europe and India in 2018 and 2019. There have been several warnings that extreme droughts and floods will become more frequent in Europe, initially in southern Europe and, with further drought years, also in central Europe. This has now even been confirmed in a study by the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) in Leipzig. Now all we need are realistic solutions and feasibility studies to counteract these extremely rapid changes. A wind of change is blowing.
Usually the jet stream with the high and low pressure areas moves from west to east and brings Central Europe a mix of sun, clouds and rain. However, with the accelerated climate change, the high pressure areas tend to persist for weeks over some European regions in summer. As a result, there are long heat waves and droughts, in the low-pressure areas there are more frequent heavy rain and floods. Various temperature and heat records have been set over the years, in 2020 there were many cold summer nights and very large temperature fluctuations. Due to the many dry and windy days, the drought has increased overall. The logging caused by wind and storm damage amounted to 18.5 million cubic meters in 2018. That is four times as much compared to the previous year. There are many forest fires because the soil and top layers with branches, leaves or needles are very dry. The risk of fire is also very high for agriculture, especially when dry fields catch fire, for example from careless drivers and smokers or from broken glass. A field fire, forest fire or forest fire is no fun because it can spread to settlements.
In many German cities there is a state of emergency, as the asphalt and concrete deserts often heat up more than the surrounding areas can quickly reach heat records of over 40 degrees. Many people, animals and plants die. In the Frankfurt metropolitan area, thousands of dead trees will probably have to be felled due to the weeks of drought and heat in the midsummer 2020. Particularly in the driest areas of Germany, many villages and towns are affected by the tree death. Due to the drought stress and plant water stress that has damaged and weakened the plants over the years, a relatively short heat phase is enough to give the plants the rest, then often watering them does not help. On the contrary, too much water at once can even damage the plants, for example if the plant cannot absorb much water due to a large part of dried up leaves, there is then a risk of accelerated root rot at the high temperatures, which can occur more often with tap water and dried out roots. If many of the deeper soil layers have completely dried out, the water cannot drain off properly, and waterlogging then forms in some places. Gardeners and plant experts know the problem. So if possible use rainwater and then not too much at once, preferably over a large area and spread over a few evenings. If the soil is not too hard, you can put drainage in some places with a pointed stick. If the soil is slightly damp overall, the rainwater can then penetrate better into deeper layers and root areas.
Climate change knows no borders, large parts of Europe are affected by drought and water scarcity. We need an adaptation and improvement of the water management or regulation as soon as possible in order to secure the public drinking water and industrial water supply in the long term. The fear of the consequences of a third year of drought is great, especially if the water table drops, entire rivers and lakes dry up. The drought threatens historical gardens and even well-known parks, the drought also has an indirect effect on all plant growth in the area. Only if the spread of healthy and relatively wild nature is promoted by favorable conditions nature as a whole can recover and regenerate. In the case of monoculture agriculture and monotonous forestry, this is difficult, but not impossible. Some consequences can only be felt years later, as environmental and weather systems sometimes react very slowly. It is similar to the nitrate or slurry problem, where in some extreme cases the groundwater wil be polluted over the years.
Really serious consequences for agriculture are still to come, probably in the years 2025 to 2030. From 2013 to 2015 there have been massive changes in global weather systems and cycles. Many of these changes also occur gradually and over long periods of time, so they cannot be seen as clearly as the consequences of a drought summer. So that you can really change something sustainably and positively, you should think in time windows of over 10 years or even decades. It is frightening to see even natural mixed forests which are suffering from climate change. The drought years even have a strong impact on humid areas, as the groundwater level often falls due to the long dry periods. Wetlands and bogs can dry out, which increases the likelihood of bog and forest fires. In addition, there are the problems of peat extraction and the drainage of landscapes for agriculture. The diverse forest conversion and the expansion of wetlands such as floodplains and moors must finally be given priority. Many nature reserves, national parks, natural regions and near-natural landscape protection areas should be expanded and connected, if possible for example with flower strips and wild meadows. Protected areas in nature and landscape protection should also be expanded and include urban regions and larger city parks or city forests. Special wilderness biotopes for a relatively free development of really ’natural nature’ should be made possible in the protected areas. Because nature is not the same as nature, at least according to the understanding of society and people.
Soil quality and healthier soils through more ecological forestry and sustainable agriculture, as well as better water management, are important to mitigate the negative consequences and effects of climate change. The already often mentioned building up of humus, cultivation of deep-rooting plants, soil improvement and green manure plants can contribute significantly to soil formation and improvement of the overall soil. Protective layers with ground cover and wildflower meadows can protect the soil in particularly hot and dry times. The principle applies, just let it grow and support nature in the development of biodiversity with natural seeds. Naturally with suitable species depending on the region and vegetation zone, i.e. suitable plants of / for mountainous areas, wetlands, grasslands, meadows and forests. To do this, one should think more about aquatic plants and then use them to improve water bodies. Because a large part of the rivers and lakes in Germany is in a precarious state, at least when it comes to the ecological aspect, neighboring agriculture, shipping and biodiversity. Without ecosystem services, human life on earth would not be possible. Worldwide, around 60% of the ecosystem services examined by the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment are in a critical state; they are at great risk from environmental pollution and environmental damage.
We all have to help make whole landscapes more diverse and resistant to climate extremes, including urban regions and cities – for this purpose, among other things, the Urban Greening Camp project started. More urban greening, solar and water surfaces as well as lighter surfaces can cool down urban areas, so-called for near-natural recreation areas and biological diversity. Agriculture based on solidarity and community gardens are also good solutions that can bring more biodiversity and community profits.
Here are a few more suggestions for improvement.
Professional advice and recommendation to good addresses and contacts in the above areas for corresponding consideration is possible, for this you can simply contact the author of this article by email.
Greening Deserts analyses and research projects have been dealing with climate change and extreme weather conditions such as exceptional heat, drought and floods since 2016. Despite all the optimism, the prognosis for the coming years does not look rosy. It takes a lot of effort, motivation and support to be able to work and live normally throughout the crisis. Cohesion is more important than ever in these times, egoism and ignorance only make things worse. We need more solidarity and courage, whether through useful information, the exchange of experiences or other meaningful actions. Simply going out into the streets unfortunately does not bring as much as taking part in constructive actions and actively participating in constructive actions for species protection, climate protection, nature conservation and environmental protection. For example planting trees, watering urban trees and plants, sowing wildflowers and caring for parks and meadows. Leaving this to others like the green space authorities or city cleaning is not a solution. In some countries or regions the corona crisis can result in massive financial problems and financial crises. There will be a lack of funds and resources for many of important environmental tasks or work in future. We all need to hold together in relation to the health of us all and the environment. Healthy ecosystems are the basis for a healthy life.
The global economic crisis and COVID-19 recession (Great Lockdown) will occupy society and the economy for many years to come. In principle there are several crises, e.g. the education crisis, health crisis, cultural crisis and social crisis. Greening Deserts articles also deal with these topics, especially in relation to the effects, consequences and causes of climate change. Many potential solutions are offered, but most of them can only be solved together – some of the suggestions have already been implemented personally or privately. I hope that many will follow. Good additions, ideas and suggestions for improvement are of course always welcome. @ feedback.greeningdeserts.com. Your friend of nature, Oliver Gediminas Caplikas. The next article deals with climate change adaptation and urban greening on many levels, for example with vertical farming. Heat-resistant and drought-tolerant plant species as well as special climate change woody plants will play an important role. Some of the plants are even drought-resistant or have a high ‘drought resistance’.
Climate protection, nature conservation and environmental protection is also species protection. These topics are important not only for the International Climate Week and international world days such as Arbor Day, World Tree Day or World Forest Day. In these times humanity has to deal with important climate problems in relation to the economy, ecology, environmental protection, nature conservation and sustainability almost every day, week, month and year. Like the corona crisis, the climate crisis knows no borders. It concerns us all. Global environmental awareness, sustainable living, more sustainable work and production can improve the climate and reduce human-made climate change effects, such as man-made deforestation, desertification and global warming. We can cool planet earth with more green landscapes, urban greening and diverse forests worldwide. Grasslands and wetlands play a special role in this.
Show that you can live and work really sustainably by saving energy, food, water and other natural resources. Reduce waste and pollution, especially plastic waste. Use alternative packaging and ecological products like bamboo or hemp products like Hemp Papers or Rice Straw Papers. Reduce deforestation, desertification and land degradation by using alternative heating and ecological building materials instead of wood. Do more for green places in your city, try to establish more community gardens, city parks, city forests, urban farming areas, fascade and rooftop gardens. The future of sustainable agriculture is ecofarming, aquaponics, hydroponics, permaculture, organic and vertical farming – even in urban areas. With urban greening on a large scale urban areas can help to cool down planet earth. Cleantech, greentech, green building, sustainable living, sustainable working and sustainable architecture is the future of sustainable building, sustainable production and sustainable cities. With large-scale urban greening, urban areas can help cool down planet earth. We all can learn a lot of desert cultures and desert cities, bedouins and indigenous people in arid landscapes or drylands. Many towns and regions around the Mediterranean Sea are also good examples, doing things like choosing light colors for their houses and roofs – but still missing more green roofs and rooftop solar on the buildings. Fascade greening and fascade solar could be a good addition to urban development in future. We need to be fast because of the desertification and rising droughts in Europe. The deserts and drylands of Africa are moving toward South Europe!
House boats or ships, mobile housing and underwater buildings can expand architecture and environmentally friendly habitats. Bamboo, hemp wood, rice straw building materials and fuels could reduce deforestation significantly. These methods would accelerate the process towards more climate neutral houses and urban areas. And again, the future of real sustainable cities, energy and traffic transition is AI and Cleantech, Energy Efficiency and Green Building, Greentech and Sustainable Architecture, Sustainable Living and Urban Greening, Sustainable Production and Sustainable Consumption, Sustainable Transport and Sustainable Working, Transparent Solar concepts and designs. Sustainable Agriculture, Ecological Forestry and Organic Farming in relation to community gardening, aquaponics, hydroponics, worldwide greening and permaculture projects can support the changes or transitions. Not to forget Sustainable Aviation, Sustainable Shipping and Sustainable Tourism. Think about new markets like a Plastic Fishing Market and Recycling Ships for example.
A good formula for real sustainable living and sustainable working is: Repair, Reuse, Recycle, Replace and Upcycle. – especially plastic. #RRRRU
Greening Deserts sustainable projects and initiatives such as Greening Camps and the Trillion Trees Initiative focuses on climate protection, education, research, the environment and species protection. We not only want to reforest or regreen the man-made deserts, arid areas and wasteland in Europe and Africa, we want also to create international platforms for sustainable economy, education, culture and science. The greening camps will also be climate camps and research camps for innovative cleantech and greentech developments. The camps will involve every region and culture in the greening and development process. The camps will also be a platform for the respective regions, with training and education in the foreground. There will be additional spaces or rooms for a library, lounge, workshop and a media room. This can enable many community activities and different types of events to be carried out, also online and virtually. International institutions, organizations, partners, projects, investors and sponsors are cordially invited to join our community network and projects!
There is a wide range of information about these topics, including innovative developments and real sustainable solutions to solve climate crisis, food, energy and water problems with global impact. Most of the solutions were confirmed by science and feasibility studies or similar concepts. International institutions and organizations were informed many times about Greening Deserts concepts, project developments and connected projects. @Agrophotovoltaik, Desert Bamboo Africa, Greening Coasts, Greening Drones, Greenhouse Ship, Green Ring Africa, Great Green Wall North Africa, Seeding Balloon, Transparent Solar,…
We not only need more actions, initiatives and innovations in the field of climate protection, nature and environmental protection. We need more action and effective solutions in relation to sustainable living and sustainable working in all areas, from big to small! Because the main problem and the main cause of the pollution are not only the car, coal and heavy industry, as well as agriculture, but it is every single one who causes and pushs the global warming and other negative climate changes by its consumption. This over-consumption and overproduction especially in areas of unhealthy monoculture food, IT technology, X-cars, smartphones and other pointless products are not just excessive waste but a meaningless destruction of resources and lives. Why should every year billions of animals and other life forms (animals and plants) die for humans if they can not even consume so many products. In some countries more than the half is thrown away, much products outdate or spoil because it is not effectively distributed or shared. Hundreds of millions of children go hungry every day and at the same time so many destroy and waste foods. In terms of food for example, one should improve preservation, logistics and distribution systems, use sustainable transport, drying and refrigeration systems more effectively worldwide instead of continuing to produce more – clearly, the solution is generally fairer distribution or sharing. If you extrapolate everything, the world produces food for over 10 billion people, countless mobile phones and notebooks for every single person.
Why do humans need so many products – more than they can even consume? Most of it becomes garbage. Metals, plastics and toxins get into the environment and sometimes even into our food. Recycling uses a lot of energy and resources. We need radical changes through more sustainable, cleaner and more sensible procurement, energy use, supply chains and production; we need intelligent, on-demand systems everywhere, so that products worldwide will be produced only as needed. In some cases, of course, essential products must be stored or produced for stock, like basic food or products like rice, for example. There should be reserves and storage for emergency cases, fast–rising demands or other critical things. But we and the world really don’t need hundreds of the same products that will become junk or scrap. Producers worldwide need to improve their operations in these areas, establishing Cleantech, Greentech, Sustainability, AI and On-Demand Systems. Large companies, as well as corporations, should simply produce less and only based on real demand by real consumers. At the very least, products which are constantly not consumed or thrown away – many meats such as chicken, pork and beef – should not be overproduced. They produce not only manure and methane which produce particulate matter, but they or the production wastes water and pollutes the groundwater and the environment in the long term.
We finally need a rethink in forestry and agriculture in terms of a more sustainable economy like Agroforestry, EcoFarming, EcoForestry, Mixed Culture and Permaculture. According to the latest findings and long-term studies, agriculture is responsible for most of the air pollution (approximately 40 percent) and the resulting water pollution! Years of deforestation had dried out whole landscapes and caused massive loss of wetlands, bogs and marshlands which can convert toxins and store up to fifty times as much CO2 as rainforests. Additionally, liquid manure and methane are a massive problem because the gases in the atmosphere create new fine dust, contaminating the groundwater for many years to come. In the coming Greening Camps, not only should these areas be researched, but also research the fields of green and clean technologies. The focus is on aquaponics, hydroponics, greenhouse, biowaste and water management, as well as new urban farming innovations.
Droughts in Germany and Europe: Drought threatens soils, agriculture and forests
It has been relatively dry in Germany since 2015, and the drought and heat waves in 2018 have seriously affected the environment. The soils of the forest are partly drier than the soils of grassland or greenland. The soil has dried out, even down to the deep layers. The groundwater very often sinks below critical levels, which significantly effects forests and bodies of water such as rivers and lakes. The water reserves are becoming increasingly scarce. Conflicts of use because of water scarcity can be exacerbated considerably. Water use and water management must become more economical and more sustainable so that there won’t be a real water crisis in the years to come. Using ponds, water towers and underground water reservoirs to collect rainwater makes more and more sense. This can be done with foils, trenches, solar pumps and agrophotovoltaic surfaces. Intelligent drip irrigation also saves a lot of water, because in dry times an incredible amount of water is wasted through irrigation or evaporation.
The fear of the consequences of another year of drought after 2019 is great, especially when drinking water becomes scarce and entire rivers or lakes dry out. After the exceptionally dry April and July, the probability of another year of drought becomes greater, but this cannot be definitively said until the end of 2020. Persistent drought threatens biodiversity, botanical gardens and well-known parks, even if many plants are watered; the aridity of the surrounding area has an indirect effect on all plant growth. An unhealthy environment in the neighborhood also affects healthy areas in the region; only if the spread of healthy nature is promoted by favorable conditions, can nature as a whole recover and regenerate. This is difficult, however, with monocultures, polluting agriculture and monotonous forestry. It is possible to change into a more sustainable agriculture and ecological forestry, still this year.
Since environmental and weather systems sometimes react very slowly, some consequences can only be felt years later, similar to the nitrate or slurry problem, where in some extreme cases the groundwater is still polluted years later. Many of the slow and creeping processes will have really serious consequences for agriculture. We will all have to live with the short-term and long-term effects of the climate crisis. Like nature, we can adapt to a certain extent, but active reduction of the problems and causes are of critical importance. Air quality is particularly important, because this also affects bodies of water and groundwater. According to the latest scientific research, air pollution from agriculture is even higher than pollution from traffic and the coal industry combined. This is not only due to the fine dust from dry fields, slurry spreading, keeping four, etc.; a big problem is the ammonia, which creates new fine dust in higher atmospheric layers. In the end, everything ends up in the water affectingthe water cycle and water quality.
Soil quality and healthier soils through more complex or versatile forestry and more ecological agriculture, as well as better water management, are important to mitigate the consequences of climate change. The use of humus generating plants, deep roots, soil improvement and green manure plants can significantly contribute to soil formation and improvement of the overall soil. Some plants even have the potential to save the climate. Industrial hemp, for example, and hemp plants promote biodiversity and improve the moisture content; the leaves and plant roots can also form humus. The pronounced roots loosen the soil. The hemp fibers of the stems can be used for hemp paper, hemp cardboard and other packaging. Undemanding types of hemp are suitable for this, as they can cope well with drought and do not have to be fertilized.
Protective layers with ground cover and wildflower meadows can protect the soil in particularly hot and dry times. The principle applies, just let it grow and support nature in the development of biodiversity with natural seeds. Work naturally with suitable species depending on the region and vegetation zone, i.e. suitable plants for mountainous areas, wetlands, grasslands, meadows and forests. To do this, one should think more about aquatic plants which can be used to improve water bodies. A large part of the rivers and lakes in Germany are in a precarious state, at least when it comes to the ecological aspect, neighboring agriculture, shipping and loss of biodiversity. This is also a problem of other European states. The economy and politics really need to care about the ongoing desertification and rising droughts in Europe. The deserts and drylands of Africa moving towards South Europe! The southern regions need fast climate adaption models and resilience plans to prevent worst case scenarious. Droughts, floods and rising fires are just the tip of the iceberg.
We all have to help make whole landscapes more diverse and more resistant to climate extremes, including urban regions and cities. For this purpose, among other things, the Urban Greening Camp project started. Solidarity agriculture and community gardens are also a good solution which can bring more biodiversity and community profits. Show courage, solidarity and support for a healthy nature and more sustainable life on planet Earth. Show that you can really live and work sustainably by using energy or electricity, water and natural resources sparingly. Avoid overconsumption and pollution, especially plastic and air pollution from cars, planes and ships. Avoid environmental pollution of any kind, especially through the use of fossil fuels and polluting fuels such as coal. Reduce plastic waste and uses alternative materials such as bamboo, hemp and rice straw paper. Remember your human connection to the planet, and work for a better and fairer climate.
Clean air, fresh water and a healthy environment are human rights. Climate protection, nature protection and environmental protection are also plant protection, animal protection and human protection or species protection, in general! We should all be more aware about climate justice and environmental justice; especially in future when a huge part of humanity will be affected by the climate crisis, extreme weather and rising sea levels.
Greening Deserts sustainable projects and initiatives such as Greening Camps and the Trillion Trees Initiative have been working on sustainable projects for society, a healthier nature and a more diverse environment for years. The projects mainly serve the protection of species and environmental protection. We want to reforest or regreen man-made deserts, arid regions and wastelands in Europe and Africa, as well as create international platforms for more sustainable research, economy, education, culture and science. The greening camps will also be climate and research camps for innovative cleantech and greentech developments. The camps can include almost any region and culture in the greening and development process. Larger camps will have an energy storage park and maybe even expanded to a cleantech and greentech campus or science park.
The official Greenhouse Ship, Recycling Ship and Plastic Fishery projects were started by Greening Deserts founder from Leipzig in 2018. The projects supporting sustainable developments and developing solutions to collect and to recycle plastics in oceans, rivers, seas and other waters. First plastic collector boats, landing ships and plastic recycling platforms to update old ships were designed. During the years the ship industry was invited to join these awesome projects. Many institutions and organizations were informed.
The projects will be a community network and platform for plastic fishing developments, innovative recycling and upcycling solutions on sea. It is also an global initiative to connect worldwide fishers, global fishery and shipping organizations who are interested to earn some extra money and to clean up the waters. The projects will support real innovative developments, develop sustainable solutions to collect and to recycle plastics and further useful resources in oceans, rivers, seas and other waters. First plastic collector boats and plastic recycling ships or platforms to upgrade old ships were designed. The ship industry, recycling branch and other related organizations were informed and invited to join this awesome project. With enough support we finally can continue the project development, build up a little team and set up the platform portals. The Greenhouse Ships will have not just laboratories, solar and greenhouse containers, but also a big greenhouse for research and a smaller mobile one for underwater. These mobile marine biospheres will be good for more realistic and applied and advanced research.
In future, the Greenhouse Ship can support the Greening Deserts species protection program, the Greening Camps and Trillion Trees Initiative for biodiversity conservation, climate protection, ecological education, ecosystem restoration, environmental protection, greening, reforestation and species protection. All these projects could reduce climate change effects, deforestation, droughts, desertification, droughts, floods, land degradation, mass extinction, global warming and pollution worldwide on a large scale.
Solar, Greenhouse and Recycling Ships are maybe the most ecological and environmental friendly ships you can imagine, because they will be build with cleantech, recycling, renewables and upcycling – renewable energy, hydrogen by solar and wind energy will power them. Old ships and oil platforms can be transformed and upgraded to recycling facilities. Another advantages are the positive impact on the environment, nature and whole humanity by doing active conservation and promoting cleantech, green thinking, real sustainability, recycling and upcycling. Together with world shipbuilders and shipping companies we will change or transform the shipping industry into a more sustainable, clean and green shipping industry. The Greening and Greenhouse Ship is a good example how to use innovations like cleantech, greentech and other sustainable technologies. Of course we will research the best solar, water and wind power solutions in combination with hydrogen. Some other articles of Greening Deserts founder have explained these innovative developments, especially the combination of solar containers, solar sails, floating solar farms and vertical wind turbines for hydrogen production for the solar and hydrogen ships we could use in future.
Plastic Fishing Community and Plastic Fishery Initiative to solve the plastic problem in the oceans and worldwide waters on a large scale
Plastic fishing and a complete new plastic fishery market could solve the worldwide plastic waste problem in lakes, rivers, seas and oceans fast and efficient. There is a real need to clean up the waters as soon as possible because of the micro-plastic problem. Greening Deserts projects have pointed out several times, every day counts to reduce the extinction of species and the poisoning of aquatic species or marine life by plastic – even humans and sea food is affected by the plastic. The world do not need new extra ships and wasting again resources like metals and plastics for this. The solution is to repair, recycle and upcycle old or current ships. Small and large ships such as boats, container ships and cruise ships could take a lot of plastic along their way, especially as many of them drive along coast with lots of plastic waste. Most of the world’s vessels could be upgraded and refitted in just one year!
Professional plastic fishery and recycling ship yards are possible.
The Plastic Fishing project will be an extra community network project to inform and to connect worldwide fishers and global fishery to new forms of plastic fishing and innovative developments for a complete new fishery market, the Plastic Fishery. It will reform the fishing market, real sustainable fishery and even parts of the shipping sector.
The Greenhouse Ship and Recycling Ship projects have introduced many new forms of plastic fishing, e.g. by equipping new and old boats or vessels with plastic fishing nets on the sides and behind. The plastic fishery can become a complete new market and give the plastic waste a better value worldwide, in the end all would win. Humanity would profit, so like the nature with all their life forms, the poorest who collect plastic waste to survive, the sustainable fishery and sustainable shipping industry – who really will do something for the climate protection, nature conservation and environmental protection. Plastic fishers and other new jobs in this relation could be created with a worldwide plastic fishing market. It is not just a chance, it has really big potential and will create a lot of opportunities for existing companies, branches and industries.
Plastic Fishery will be the official platform, directory and network for Sustainable Fishery, Plastic Recycling and Sustainable Shipping. The project want to develop and share plastic fishing innovations. We all together can build and establish a complete new branch or market. Plastic Fishing will reform the fisheries and even parts of the shipping sector. Sustainable Fishing and Sustainble Shipping together is possible! There will be a lot of more topics, innovative solutions and news in future. Constructive feedback and real support is always welcome.
Help us to create the world’s first Greenhouse Ship with lab, greenhouse and solar containers, recycling facility and workshops. Investors, international partners and sponsors are always welcome to join the project developments.
Read more on the official project pages and the future platforms which will be developed during the years.
The hemp plant is not only the most useful plant in the world, hemp is also a potential climate saver and can even significantly reduce global warming, climate crises and land degradation with appropriate applications. Greening Deserts projects such as the Greening Camps and research stations will use bamboo, hemp and other key plants extensively to improve soil quality and water quality. Various greenhouses and research fields can be established together with the camps for education, research and product development, the projects also serve the climate, nature and environmental protection. At each camp can be special biotopes, botanical gardens, greenhouses and parks for endangered species – especially for cultivating or saving plants, insects and other animals of each climate zone or region.
The groundwater, global waters and water circle can be improved by sustainable hemp cultivation, ecological agriculture, organic farming and innovative water management. Only natural fertilizers will be used and pesticides are avoided, there are many good alternatives. Different bamboo and hemp sorts can be used in almost every climate and under all possible conditions or events. Global hemp cultivation can really contribute to climate, soil and water improvement as well as for a better cultivation of crops and a variety of afforestation or reforestation. The founder and project developer of Greening Camp projects has been developing these innovative and sustainable solutions for years. Climate protection, nature conservation, species protection and plant science are a few of the primary tasks.
Since the Greening Deserts Masterplan in 2017 many of the innovative ideas, developments and solutions have been presented and realized – not only in relation to open-cast mines, open-pit mines and surface mining. Through connected projects, most developments and ideas have been established internationally, even if only conceptually or theoretically. Many of the developments or products can be realized with hemp, e.g. hemp books, papers, nets, tarpaulins, ropes, textiles, packaging materials and other hemp products. Hemp fibers have been used for many centuries in fishery and shipping because of their flexibility, tear resistance and resilience. Nowadays, there are well over 50,000 industrial hemp applications, but far too few are really used. That is why many of the most useful applications are analyzed with the greening and research camps and applied accordingly. Hemp paper, hemp wood and hemp plastic are interesting products, so like the ingredients CBD, THC, etc. – not just for science. Industrial hemp can be used for hemp paper and hemp packaging, saving more trees and forests and reducing global deforestation. It could even reduce the plastic waste, especially the plastic bags. In this relation is the hemp cultivation not just interesting for developing countries with soil and water problems like in Africa, it also has enormous potential for European countries and whole Europe who missed many of these developments.
More information about hemp plants and hemp paper:
For about 12,000 years people have been using the raw material. Hemp paper was invented in China over 2,000 years ago and reached Europe in the 13th century. For 500 years it was the most widely used raw material in paper-making. Hemp books such as the Gutenberg Bible and other well-known works were printed on hemp papers. Hemp paper is much more stable and durable than wood paper. Hemp paper books last much longer and do not turn yellow fast. Hemp fibers are naturally lighter than wood fibers. Hemp is therefore better suited for paper production than wood.
The cannabis or hemp plant produces several times higher yields than trees in terms of cultivated area and growing time. One hectare of hemp field can replace about 120 hectares of trees. Sustainability, the forest conservation or preservation of the forests, as well as the improvement of the soils, are further advantages of hemp production. In principle, almost all varieties can be used for hemp cultivation. Particularly suitable for hemp fiber production is high-growth industrial hemp. Depending on the variety, hemp plants can grow several meters in just three to four months. Hemp leaves an optimal field or soil for subsequent plants. According to farmers and hemp farmers, a wheat or potato field can produce up to 20% more yield in the following year. The hemp plant is therefore a perfect catch crop and is also very well suited as a bio fertilizer. In some regions even two harvests per year are possible. Hemp is the ideal plant for ecological and organic farming or sustainable agriculture. In Germany, hemp is not allowed to grow for everyone. The cultivation of hemp is just allowed with certain permits and only for certain agricultural companies. All other companies in agriculture are not allowed to grow hemp, not even private or forestry organizations. This clearly contradicts the positive qualities and benefits for the environment, nature, medicine and society.
Further ecological and economic advantages of the raw material hemp:
Hemp is very undemanding and grows on almost any soil, the root system loosens up the soil.
Hemp plants are very resistant to fungal attacks.
Hemp cultivation creates a slightly wetter climate, hemp fields support biodiversity, especially with respect to insects. The pollen of the male hemp plant is interesting for bees or wild bees.
Hemp plants suppress weeds and improve the soil climate.
Hemp can clean up poisoned soils, sometimes even from some heavy metals.
The hemp blossom has many valuable ingredients.
The hemp plant can be fully utilized, including the foliage, flowers, seeds and stems. There are thousands of applications and products, e.g. hemp tea, hemp oil, hemp paper, hemp textiles or hemp fabrics.
Hemp fibers are very resistant and therefore usable in many areas.
Hemp fibers are among the most stable natural fibers in the world.
Hemp paper can be recycled more often than wood paper, almost every type of paper and cardboard can be made from hemp.
Hemp books, magazines and newspapers are the future!
More information you can find on the Hemp Papers project pages.
Please care the soil not just on the World Soil Day on 5th December, care it everyday like your fresh water. If we care more about our soils we care more about ourselfs, our planet Earth and the humanity. The Latin name for man, humans or homo, derived from humus.
About a third of the world’s soil has already been degraded. Soils are the basis of life, ninety five percent of our food comes from the soil. – Maria-Helena Semedo
A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people. – Franklin D. Roosevelt
A tree’s most important means of staying connected to other trees is a “wood wide web” of soil fungi that connects vegetation in an intimate network that allows the sharing of an enormous amount of information and goods. – Tim Flannery
Collaboration has no hierarchy. The Sun collaborates with soil to bring flowers on the earth. – Amit Ray
Civilization has its roots in the soil. Each soil has had its own history. Like a river, a mountain, a forest, or any natural thing, its present condition is due to the influences of many things and events of the past. – Charles Kellogg
The Earth and soil is the basis of all life, even on the deep undergrounds of the oceans. The deforestation, land degradation and the pollution of air, water and soils by humans is responsible for many climate changes, human-made global warming and even a mass extinction in only 100 years! If humanity will fail to save and protect the most important species, the endangered and keystone species, the human species will also die out – maybe also in just 100 years. – Gediminas Caplikas
History is largely a record of human struggle to wrest the land from nature, because man relies for sustenance on the products of the soil. So direct, is the relationship between soil erosion, the productivity of the land, and the prosperity of people, that the history of mankind, to a considerable degree at least, may be interpreted in terms of the soil and what has happened to it as the result of human use. – Hugh Hammond Bennett
If we pollute the air, water and soil that keep us alive and well, and destroy the biodiversity that allows natural systems to function, no amount of money will save us. – David Suzuki
I saw all the people hustling early in the morning to go into the factories and the stores and the office buildings, to do their job, to get their check. But ultimately it’s not office buildings or jobs that give us our checks. It’s the soil. The soil is what gives us the real income that supports us all. – Ed Begley, Jr.
It helps to think of soil as a living organism covered with skin like a human. We can live with a certain percentage of our skin damaged, but if too high a percentage is damaged, we die. So, too, does soil and thus most life. – Allan Savory
People in cities may forget the soil for as long as a hundred years, but Mother Nature’s memory is long and she will not let them forget indefinitely. – Henry A. Wallace
Soil is not usually lost in slabs or heaps of magnificent tonnage. It is lost a little at a time over millions of acres by the careless acts of millions of people. It cannot be saved by heroic feats of gigantic technology, but only by millions of small acts and restraints, conditioned by small fidelities, skills, and desires. Soil loss is ultimately a cultural problem; it will be corrected only by cultural solutions. – Wendell Berry
Soil organic matter sustains agriculture, which sustains civilization. Soil organic matter generates and regulates every ecosystem service that sustains life on earth. Topsoil loss in excess of topsoil formation has been the defining characteristic of agriculture. The rapid formation of carbon-rich topsoil is the greatest priority and opportunity of our time. If you harvest a crop you are removing nutrients from that ecosystem – for sustainable production they need to be replaced.
Standing on soil feels so much different than standing on city pavement; it lets you look inward and reflect and see who you really are, while you see a beautiful, unspoiled land as far as the eye can see. It allows your inner life to grow. – Ricardo Montalban
The only truly dependable production technologies are those that are sustainable over the long term. By that very definition, they must avoid erosion, pollution, environmental degradation, and resource waste. Any rational food-production system will emphasize the well-being of the soil-air-water biosphere, the creatures which inhabit it, and the human beings who depend upon it. – Eliot Coleman
The fate of the soil system depends on society’s willingness to intervene in the market place, and to forego some of the short-term benefits that accrue from ‘mining’ the soil so that soil quality and fertility can be maintained over the longer term. – Eugene Odum
The soil is the great connector of lives, the source and destination of all. It is the healer and restorer and resurrector, by which disease passes into health, age into youth, death into life. Without proper care for it we can have no community, because without proper care for it we can have no life. – Wendell Berry
Understanding is the soil in which grow all the fruits of friendship. – Woodrow Wilson
We must come to understand our past, our history, in terms of the soil and water and forests and grasses that have made it what it is. – William Vogt
Greening Deserts Sustainable Projects Summary:
Greening Deserts projects are cultural, economic, educational, scientific, social and sustainable projects in the field of horticulture, hydroponics, sustainable agriculture and ecological forestry – but also in the fields of clean technology, green technologies and renewable energy such as solar, water and wind energy. Electricity access, availability and reliability together with energy efficiency will be optimized at the greening and research camps. The focus is on education, sustainable developments and scientific research. Conservation, environmental protection and species protection plays a very important role, too. Main goals of the projects are to reduce deforestation, desertification, pollution and global warming on a large scale. Goals are also to improve the energy and food security, to offer innovative management, ecosystem and greening services. The projects will reform the agriculture and forestry with Ecofarming, Ecoforestry and Permaculture methods, technics and techniques. The projects can include each region and nation in the process, especially in relation to Cleantech, Greentech, environmental protection, a real Sustainable Infrastructure and Sustainable Investments – Green Finance and Sustainable Finance. The worldwide cleaning and greening process can accelerate the global peace building process significantly.
More articles and news will come! Feel free to comment and to add interesting quotes to the topics.
Greening Deserts sustainable projects like the Greening Camps want to establish innovative developments like Agrophotovoltaik and Energy Storage Parks, Greening Drones and Seeding Balloons, Transparent Solar and Vertical Greenhouses. With the first Greening Camp and adequate fundings all the sustainable developments could finally be accelerated and developed worldwide. The projects were founded and initiated by the Greening Deserts founder. He informed institutions, organizations and even invited governments to join these projects and initiatives, as well as to the Greenhouse Ship, Plastic Fishing and Trillion Trees Initiative. If for example each nation plants approx 2 billion trees, we the humanity could reach the goal to plant one trillion trees very fast and we could really cool down the planet on a large scale. It would also protect and save countless species which are endangered by extinction. There are many campaigns and initiatives in this relation and we all are connected to reach the global goals faster.
The Greening Camp keyplants like bamboo, beans, hemp and sunflowers will improve the soils, underground water and waters. Drylands and wastelands can be turned into fertile lands easily. Hemp improves the soils in just a few years, after this other soil improving plants, environmental friendly crops and trees can be planted. Hemp will be just a side product of the forestation or greening processes, it can be delivered to hemp product producers like the hemp paper branch and hemp wood industry. The Greening Camps will produce millions of tons of hemp. All would win at the end, the poor people or regions, the degraded lands or soils, the forestry, paper and wood industry – even big wood paper consumers like the book, newspaper and packaging industry. Hemp papers and hemp carton packages will save a lot of trees and will reduce deforestation significantly. Forestation.net
Since the last two years the founder informed hundreds of publishers, media companies and paper producers about these facts. Greening Deserts Camp projects and products like Hemp Papers have really big potential to reduce deforestation, land degradation, pollution and wasting resources worldwide. Each camp will have a recycling center and workshop, especially for creative plastic waste recycling and upcycling. Biowaste Management, Greenhouse Management and Water Management will improve soils, air and water quality in all camp areas. Millions of new jobs and whole new markets will be created!
Other main goals in this relation are to bring back biodiversity, typical and rare plants of all concerned region. Seed banks or stores and special greenhouses, botanical gardens or similar habitats for the most endangered species will be established at each camp. Climate protection, conservation, environmental protection and species protection are also main tasks of the camps. Of course, we can not do everything. We will exchange and share a lot with other similar institutions, organizations and projects – like with national parks, game reserves or wildlife preserves.
The Greening Camps will establish green spots, healthy environments and platforms for all regions really need better soils, clean air and fresh water. The camps will be platforms for cleantech, climate protection, conservation, culture, education, environmental protection, greentech and science. All camps will have a library, lounge and media room. Bigger camps will get an Energy Storage Park and even could be expanded to a kind of campus or science park. We exchanged with a lot of institutions about it and many liked the projects. With active, constructive and financial support by the official institutions the camps can be build very fast. We have not much time to reduce desertification, global warming, human-made climate change effects and extreme weather before the biosphere will collapse – responsible bodies and institutions need to act immediately. Many camps could be build in 2020, the case the projects will finally be supported by the African Union, EU and UN. Even refugee camps could have a greening camp area. The founder combined and researched since years much more innovative developments, technics, techniques and products. You can check them on the official project pages.
The planet earth can be cooled with more diverse forests, green and natural landscapes worldwide – especially urban regions which heat up very much each year. Bamboo, hemp wood, rice straw and other sustainable innovative building materials and fuels could significantly reduce deforestation and man-made climate change. The future of truly sustainable cities, the energy transition and transport sector are: AI and Cleantech, Energy Efficiency and Green Building, Greentech and Sustainable Architecture, Sustainable Living and greening of cities, Sustainable Production and Sustainable Consumption, Sustainable Transport and Sustainable Working, Sustainable Agriculture, Ecological Forestry and Organic Farming in relation to Community Gardens, Hydroponics, Permaculture, Urban Agriculture, Vertical Farming can significantly support change or reversals. Not forget to mention Sustainable Aviation, Sustainable Shipping and Sustainable Tourism. All of these areas or topics will also play an important role at Urban Greening Camps. First camps in this relation are planned for European cities or urban areas and for open pit terrains or surface mining landscapes.
Greening Deserts projects are cultural, educational, economic, social, scientific and sustainable projects in the field of horticulture, hydroculture, sustainable agriculture and ecological forestry – but also in the fields of clean technology (CleanTech), green technologies (GreenTech) and renewable energy such as solar, water and wind energy. Electricity access, availability and reliability together with energy efficiency will be optimized at the greening and research camps. The focus is on education, sustainable developments and scientific research. Conservation and environmental protection plays a very important role, too. Main goals of the projects are to reduce deforestation, desertification, pollution and global warming on a large scale. Goals are also to improve the energy and food security, to offer innovative management, ecosystem and greening services. The projects will reform the agriculture and forestry with ecofarming, ecoforestry and permaculture methods, technics and techniques. The projects can include each region and nation in the process, especially in relation to cleantech, greentech, environmental protection, a real sustainable infrastructure and sustainable investments – Green Finance and Sustainable Finance. To manage and to share better necessary finances a special Greening Fund will be established together with international financial institutions. Greening Camps for biodiversity conservation, ecosystem restoration, environmental greening, reforestation and species protection will improve environments, health and nature-near habitats.
It is a real chance for the world, especially for Africa and Europe to reach faster the Climate Goals and more Sustainable Development Goals together with Greening Deserts international and innovative developments. The future vision is to establish a Greening Campus on all continents and several camps for all regions who need ecological, environmental and sustainable development services. Each constructive feedback and real active support is always welcome!
You can read more about all the developments on the official project pages like Agrophotovoltaik, Energy Storage Park, Greening Coasts, Greening Camp, Greening Drone, Greenhouse Ship, Green Ring Africa, Great Green Wall North Africa, Hemp Books, Hemp Papers, Seeding Balloon, Transparent Solar,.. and on the newest projects like Plastic Fishery and Recycling Ship. Each project will get an own page or section in future.
Climate protection, nature conservation and environmental protection is also species protection. We need more environmental awareness and sustainability, sustainable living and sustainable working, in all fields or areas. We need to create a world of understanding, acceptance, respect, tolerance, compassion and consciousness.
Keynote and Update X:
The maybe most important issue, topic or point is the problem with the daily extinction of the real endangered species and wrong focus or awareness in relation to endangered species in general and most endangered species who really need to be saved – and to reduce or prevent the ongoing mass extinction really effective. It are mainly the most endangered species and keystone species which must be cared more than well known and relative protected species like elephants, hippos, lions, pandas, whales, etc.. Many of the countless programs and resources for mentioned species should be used for the most endangered species and threatened keystone species. It makes no sense to protect more and more the well know species and every day dying or even extinct so many other important species. AI, Deep Learning, Supercomputers and intelligent computing systems should be used primarely to find all the most endangered and keystone species who are recorded. Search algorithms and organizations like ACM, MA, Google, Research Gate and Wolfram Alpha should support this actively. International institutions and nations should unite in this relation. It is maybe the most important issue of the world! Afforestation.org
We have not much time to establish hundreds of camps, greenhouses and new special areas for this special species protection tasks – on land and at sea – for the most endangered species of this world. The reality is, if the most important species or keystone species like bees extinct or reach a certain low population level (MVP), humanity and much other species depending on them will die out, too. If these most important food or dependency chains and bridges collapse, even if it are relative small or partially unknown keystone species, it can cause cascade effects similar like in the case of the permafrost problem. No panic, but every day and action in this relation counts. The only way is to unite, to focus on this problem and find fastest solutions. My tip work out keystone species and priority lists for all the expert workgroups and worldwide institutions like universities and schools – not just in relation to climate protection, environmental or species protection. The media and public should also report mainly about this.
Don’t ignore it. Forward and share if you can, it affects us all.
Author: Oliver Gediminas Caplikas, Leipzig, November 2019
Drought and heat are also a problem for the farmers. European farms expect harvest losses of 30 to 50 percent compared to the previous year. In parts of Germany, the soil is as dry as it has been for 50 years. Extreme drought, thunderstorms and floods often occur together and can severely affect affected countries. These extreme weather conditions are increasing not just in Africa but also in Europe, particularly hit countries such as Greece, Spain and Italy, where massive forest fires and the resulting desertification increases extremely. This year, even European countries such as Germany and Poland are affected, where some regions even introduced emergency harvesting and water restrictions after the second drought. In some regions, rivers and lakes dry up, even the groundwater and drinking water is scarce. Greening Deserts has been reporting extensively on these topics for years, especially in terms of soil degradation and desertification. Large opencast mining areas (surface mining deserts), cities (concrete deserts) and urban regions also contribute to this extreme climate. Many of these consequences of man-made climate change are not exactly predictable, but can be estimated very well with today’s scientific findings in climate research. We discussed with many climate researchers, nature and environmentalists and exchanged about this problem.
Other topics such as the reform of agriculture, soil improvement and water improvement have been and will be discussed in detail. Unfortunately, we have not received any active and financial support from the responsible authorities since years. For a long time we could do research on more effective cultivation and irrigation methods with a first greening and research camp in the surface mining landscape of Leipzig (Lakeland Neuseenland) – if our inquiries and demands had been taken seriously, especially by the big parties who were informed several times. Our demands and requests for help to German foundations, especially in the field of education, nature and environmental protection were ignored or there were the usual excuses.
We hope for quick help or support, so that we can work together with all involved parties to make the coal exit and transformation of the energy industry and agriculture to clean energy and technologies (cleantech) fast and efficient. We want to cultivate bamboo, hemp and palm trees on a large scale in opencast mining areas – not just because of the benefits in these areas, but also because of new innovative developments and compensatory measures in relation to global warming. In addition, special desert plants, extremely resistant, robust and undemanding plants are explored, such as rock garden plants and desert bamboo. Thus, many useful plants for improving the quality of soil, air and water can be used not only on land, but also in urban areas and large cities. Of course we will run a diverse agriculture and gardening – this is also called ecofarming. Wild blooms and flowerbeds counteract massive bee and insect deaths or in general the massive extinction of species. As you can see Greening Deserts is not only concerned with deserts and desertification but with many other important tasks and topics. If this is not eligible .. an extensive consultation and accompaniment to appropriate funding would be really appropriate.
Visit our social and scientific pages and groups for more information. You’re welcome to discuss and to exchange with us about all these topics!
Today is World Water Day! More than 1 billion people around the world have no access to safe water. Over 2 million people die each year because of unsafe water. Care about and don’t waste water. Never forget clean air, food and water are Human Rights, as well as a healthy environment. #WorldWaterDay
Greening Deserts are economical, educational, cultural, social, scientific and sustainable projects to reduce desertification and global warming. We will use filtered ocean, sea, lake or river water for sustainable irrigation and water sharing systems overground and underground. Greening Deserts projects will produce different kinds of water like process water, drinking water and fresh water.
Greening Deserts projects want to develop, reseach and work on better water processing and water management methods. We will use advanced aquaponics and hydropnics techniques. After some applications for fundings or financial support and after informing responsible German institutions like Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt (DBU) we still havn’t got any support – just excuses and promises. The ignorance of the responsibles in Germany is unacceptable. Since autumn last year we informed most of the German parties and responsible authorities, institutions and organisations that we need help and financial support. In some cases we waited over an month, got no answer or just automated e-mail answering, although we informed them many times by email and got receipts – so we know that the most got the information and requests.
“The ecological status of German waters is 70 percent bad, 65 percent of the wetland habitats are in acute danger, reports the Global Nature Fund. The foundation also gives a bad prognosis for the future. Entries from agriculture and human use are, according to a recent report, the main causes of poor water quality; Micropollutants caused by drugs, hormones and microplastics would bring further risks. ” https://wasser-abwasser-technik.com/besorgnis-ueber-zustand-der-gewaesser-in-deutschland
More news about waters and water quality in Germany and Europe:
For more information visit the official pages and connected project like Greening Coasts and Desert Bamboo Project. We wrote a lot about water management and improvement of water quality. http://www.greeningdeserts.com/further-goals-and-ideas-for-the-effective-sustainable-and-fast-cultivation-of-surface-mining-landscapes
..wetlands were important for carbon capture and storage, a process known as carbon sequestration, holding up to 50 times as much carbon by area as rainforests. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/feb/03/scientists-hope-wetland-carbon-storage-experiment-is-everyones-cup-of-tea
We want to restore also old wetlands like were destroyed by coal mining companies in the region of Leipzig. Support our sustainable projects for a better and greener future for us all. The time to change and to invest is now. Thank you!
World Water Day, water quality, truth, facts and reality in Germany or Europe. More information will come.
The new Master Plan, Business Plan and Financial Plan for the Greening Deserts projects is ready after months of work. A first draft of the master plan and financial plan (budget) was pre-released in October, the complete business plan in December 2017. Both current versions in German can be downloaded here or in the download area. The professional translation into English was not possible due to other important work or projects, also because special variants of the business plan for Germany and a startup competition of start2grow were made and sent there. In the next few days, a general public version of the business plan will be put online.
Here is a short excerpt:
The first greening camp (pilot project) is planned for the opencast mining area in the Leipzig region (Lakeland) in Saxony. Preferred land or terrain are located at the Cospudener-, Markkleeberger- and Zwenkauer See. However, the project can also be realized in other opencast mining regions. Alternative locations can also be found outside of open-pit landscapes. Terrains at waters, such as rivers, lakes and seas are always prefered. Dune, coastal, field and desert research are primary fields of science. Equally important is the research and development of sustainable greening methods, greenhouse management, forestry, agriculture and cultural economy in conjunction with the sciences.
The first greening and research camp with greenhouse, office and laboratory container(s) or tents should be a central meeting place and research station for all the topics and areas mentioned. Interesting insights and developments are shared with institutions and partners and published when needed. With interested and competent persons, organisations or bodies will be communicated during the project.
Communication, exchange of experience and knowledge as well as good management of innovation and knowledge are important areas for the future. The Change-, Compliance-, Decision-Making-, Risk- and Project Management plays also an important role (partly also in the initial phase). The management instruments and the organizational structure will be adjusted accordingly. With sufficient financial resources, a financial manager (alternatively CFO) and project manager will be hired as soon as possible. The tasks of the CEO as well as CTO can be taken by the founder of Greening Deserts. Extensive information is available especially in the areas of development, management, risk analysis and finance. In order to mitigate or prevent most risks from the outset, the best possible risk spreading will be established. For particularly important areas there are alternative solutions and plans.
For the company it is important to create a balanced working environment and working methods. A positive working environment, a pleasant atmosphere and relaxed interaction are fundamental principles. It is planned to work sustainable and forward-looking or proactive manner. This corporate culture should also be carried out to the world.
With serious interest in cooperations or partnerships and after concluded cooperation agreement (alternatively CDA and LoI) the current business plan, financial plan and many interesting annexes can be sent also in English. The general concept (master plans) and the business plan are constantly being developed. The internal version will not be published or otherwise published and only will be made available to future partners if there is genuine interest in collaborations or meaningful cooperations. It is a living business and master plan that is constantly expanding, improving, simplifying and evolving.
The projects can start also in countries that invest first in a big Greening Deserts camp. The time to invest is now! Help us to reduce global warming and negative human-made climate changes on a global scale.
Here is a shortened version, the first pages of the German Business Plan.
The second Greening Deserts Master Plan for desert areas such as open-pit deserts is ready and of course in continuous development.
The business plan, concept and study on sustainable greening methods, greenhouse management, forestry, agriculture and cultural economy for opencast mine and post-mining landscapes can also be adapted as needed or revised for any situation.
In the following a few special Unique Selling Propositions (USPs) and innovative ideas are briefly summarized.
Most work, services or services can be realized with sufficient resources and resources with a few helpers. With money, financial resources or support it is no problem to build fast a good time. The services are chargeable, but in some exceptions such as investments, joint ventures, sponsorships or similar collaborations may be free or mutually beneficial. Various constellations, partnerships and synergy effects are possible. Further information can be found in the Masterplan 2 and partner, investor or sponsoring concept.
Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving. – Albert Einstein
Faith moves mountains, intelligence goes over them, wisdom goes around them, but love levels them. – Matshona Dhliwayo
You don’t climb mountains without a team, you don’t climb mountains without being fit, you don’t climb mountains without being prepared and you don’t climb mountains without balancing the risks and rewards. And you never climb a mountain on accident – it has to be intentional. – Mark Udall
Doubt makes the mountain that faith can shift. – German proverb
Faith can move mountains. Doubt can create them.