Talking Points Regarding Savory, Seth Itzkan (2013)


Read full article: Talking Points Regarding Savory, Seth Itzkan (2013)


The evidence in support of Holistic Management, both scientific and empirical, combined with the heightened emergency of global warming, makes inquiry into this methodology essential.  To ignore the merit and potential of this innovation now, or to succumb to vitriol, would be a dereliction of our duty as stewards of this planet.

1. Statements that Savory’s work isn’t supported in the academic peer-reviewed literature, or that it has been discredited in the academic literature are categorically wrong. The entire so called discrediting of Savory rests on two papers, Holecheck (2000) and Briske (2008), which themselves have been refuted in the academic and professional literature (Teague, Provenza, et al 2008; Teague, Dowhower, et al 2011, Gill 2009b, Gill 2009c).  Studies in peer-reviewed academic literature show that Savory’s method works in achieving a full suite of ecological, economic, and quality of life enhancing goals (Stinner, D. 1997, Teague R. 2011), including improved grass density, soil moisture, soil bulk density, standing crop biomass, and soil organic matter (SOM) (Teaque R. 2011) and percent volumetric-water content (%VWC) (Weber K.T., Gokhale B.S., 2011), where both SOM and %VWC are indicators of soil carbon. A recent study from Chiapas, Mexico has shown that Holistic Management on dairy farms allowed for an increasing in production with a simultaneous increase in sustainability (Alfaro-Arguello R., A.W. Diemont S., 2010). And Savory’s thesis that a paucity of animals on grasslands is a major cause of desertification is also supported (Weber, K. T.,  Horst, S., 2011).

2. There is abundant empirical evidence of its efficacy (Dagget, D 2000, 2005; Judy, G 2008; Howell, J 2008, Savory Institute 2013, Planet-TECH 2013).

3. The climate crisis is much worse than is commonly realized and efforts of atmospheric carbon capture must become a worldwide priority. Recent research suggests summer polar cover could be entirely gone by as early as 2016 (Romm 2013), and that the resultant positive feedbacks from arctic methane release could cause runaway catastrophic warming, with “Permian Extinction” level consequences within this century (Arctic News 2013).

Savory Institute

Savory Institute

The Savory Institute is on a mission to regenerate the grasslands of the world and the livelihoods of their inhabitants, through Holistic Management. Since 2009, Savory Institute has been leading the regenerative agriculture movement by equipping farmers, ranchers, and pastoralist communities to regenerate land within culturally-relevant and ecologically-appropriate contexts.
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