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Turning desert sand into agricultural land in 7 hours with liquid nanoclay.

 
 
Reply Sat 30 Jun, 2018 10:30 pm
From sand to soil in 7 hours | Ole Morten Olesen | TEDxArendal
TEDx Talksy

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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 790 • Replies: 22
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coluber2001
 
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Reply Sun 1 Jul, 2018 09:58 am
The cost is about $2,000 per acre, not cheap, and of course it has to be irrigated. The speaker indicates that this is now being done in Egypt with dug canals and desalination plants, leastways irrigation. I don't know about the liquid nanoclay application.

The land doesn't have to be used for agriculture, because it can be returned to woodlands or wild herbage.
roger
 
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Reply Sun 1 Jul, 2018 11:55 am
@coluber2001,
$2,000 an acre really is cheap. We've got land in NW New Mexico selling for that much and even the sage brush is struggling.
coluber2001
 
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Reply Sun 1 Jul, 2018 12:20 pm
@roger,
The $2,000 an acre is not for the land but for the treatment with the liquid nanoclay. The problem with sand is that water seeps right through and is not available to plants. The liquid Nanoclay binds to the sand grains and holds the water in the soil like a sponge. Still, you have to have irrigation, and to dig irrigation canals and even desalination plants
is a tremendous and expensive undertaking. Where you now have herbs and trees growing in what used to be a desert is aiding the effort against global warming. It's a global problem now.
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coluber2001
 
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Reply Sun 1 Jul, 2018 03:12 pm
This pertains to the above video.

Published on Dec 2, 2016
Water is a scarce resource that many of us take for granted, but unfortunately large parts of Earth’s population do not have that luxury. Ole and his innovation team have tried to solve an enormous task: to turn sand into soil. Even more exciting – they believe they have solved the problem!

Listen to Ole talk us through the concept behind turning deserts and sand dunes green. How their technology could change the face of the planet, and solve parts of the global environmental problem. Presenting the game-changing concept at TEDxArendal, he will show you the fascinating images of the green lush results!

Ole Morten has an extensive background in R&D and is focused on "Desert Control" since the companys inception. He has been instrumental in developing and testing Liquid nano clay, which is a tool for turning sand into soil.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx
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coluber2001
 
  1  
Reply Mon 2 Jul, 2018 11:01 am
The liquid Nanoclay is sprayed onto the soil or combined with an irrigation spray. One of the stated reasons for success is that mycorrhizal fungi are able to grow in sand that has been inoculated with Nanoclay. Mycorrhizal fungi are present on the root of most plants, probably about 90% of plants. Theirs is a mutual association without which the plants would have a hard time growing. The plant supplies the fungi with sugars, and the fungi supply the plants with water and minerals, especially phosphorus and nitrogen.The mycelium, the basic body of the fungi, is composed of hyphae, which are very fine threads. These hyphae are how much smaller in diameter than the root hairs of the plant and are, therefore, better able to absorb water and minerals. Also, some fungi fix their own nitrogen from the air.

Some of the Middle East Arab countries are showing great interest in this technology, because combined with desalination plants and canals for irrigation they would be able to convert vast areas of desert sand to arable land.

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Ceili
 
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Reply Mon 2 Jul, 2018 07:11 pm
This is fascinating. I've been following the progress in China's Loess valley, and along the green line in Africa using permaculture methods, but this is beyond brilliant. This could revolutionize not only food production, but the earth - carbon capturing, clean energy, and shift politics - making the African block a powerhouse. Interesting.
I wish I could live long enough to see this all play out.
coluber2001
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 11:53 am
@Ceili,
This process is proprietary and under patent, so I don't know how widespread it will become. I'm hoping it will, because it could be a real boon for arid areas. Of course you have to have a water source for irrigation. I guess time will tell if it's cost efficient and really works.
ehBeth
 
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Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 02:57 pm
Why are we messing with the earth even more? can't see this being a good thing long-term.
coluber2001
 
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Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 03:34 pm
@ehBeth,
I don't see how this could ever be a bad thing. It's simply improving soil so things can grow better. The more plants you have the less carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
ehBeth
 
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Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 03:41 pm
@coluber2001,
I don't think things should be grown where they don't occur naturally.

Irrigation in California = bad thing to me.

Orange groves in Florida = very bad thing to me.

Lawns anywhere = horrible horrible thing to me.

Changing the desert into anything other than desert = vile.

__

I can appreciate making formerly arable lands arable again, but beyond that, no.

I ripped all of the lawn out of my property when I bought it. Put in native plants. Haven't watered in about 18 years now. If plants can't make it, they don't belong here. Some fruits make it - as do onions/potatoes/garlic.
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ehBeth
 
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Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 03:51 pm
@coluber2001,
coluber2001 wrote:
Of course you have to have a water source for irrigation.


this is where it all falls apart for me, in the sense of being desirable in any way
coluber2001
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 04:59 pm
@ehBeth,
Arid regions do get rain, but most of it either immediately runs off, evaporates, or soaks into the sand. If you have plants growing there they trap the water and slowly return it to the atmosphere. The idea is that in areas near the ocean, such as Dubai, you can build desalination plants using solar power to irrigate their crops. They're not talking about using fresh water reservoirs, because there aren't any in the deserts.
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Ceili
 
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Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 06:55 pm
The vast majority of the deserts that could use this technology were at one time not desert and were artificially made by humans, usually in the production of charcoal. Egypt, Saudi and great swaths of Africa were desertified by humans but the deserts continue to grow. There are rivers in Africa that have changed their paths to the detriment of huge populations, all within the last 50 or so years. Once systems like this are in place, and are performing as they should, irrigation and desalinization plants will not be necessary, as ancient water paths (streams/rivers) will come back to life.
It's been proven in areas of China and Ethiopia where former desert areas have come back to life, water and all.
Watch the video below and you'll see what I'm talking about.
Ceili
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 06:57 pm
Here is another video, from the same guy but mostly about Africa.
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coluber2001
 
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Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 06:59 pm
@ehBeth,
Quote:
I can appreciate making formerly arable lands arable again, but beyond that, no.


What's the time limit on when they were previously arable? 50 years, 100 years, a thousand years, Ten Thousand Years?

I agree its wrong to take freshwater from an aquifer for irrigation. But they're talking about taking salt water from the ocean, taking the salt of it and using it for irrigation. If they're using solar energy for the desalination, that's a great thing.

I agree about lawns. The only reason I can see to have a lawn is if you have children that like to run and play on it. Grass is the only thing resilient enough to put up with that kind of abuse. There are grasses that don't need watering, so they turn brown during the hottest part of summer, which is perfectly natural.

On the old prairies the grasses dried up during the summer, or even burned, and the bison trampled on them, and that's what the grasses were used to and adapted to.
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Ceili
 
  2  
Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 10:03 pm
The great green wall.
coluber2001
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jul, 2018 11:27 pm
@Ceili,
I watched the complete video on the degradation and Rehabilitation of the loess plateau. A great success story! Thanks for posting it.
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coluber2001
 
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Reply Wed 4 Jul, 2018 01:21 pm
@Ceili,
How refreshing! It uplifts the spirit to see people working positively with nature. It's a wall in positive terms, a great green wall, not in the negative terms of the Great Wall of China, the Berlin Wall, the United states-Mexico border wall.
0 Replies
 
coluber2001
 
  2  
Reply Wed 4 Jul, 2018 10:03 pm
Earthrise- the great green wall.

0 Replies
 
 

 
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