Defining Sustainable Land Use
What Is Sustainable Land Use
What exactly is sustainable land use? The forestry glossary would simply state, “The use of the land in a way that does not reduce its future productive capacity.” That’s cut and dry, simple enough for everyone to understand. Kinda like the song, “This land is your land, this land is my land, from California, to the New York Island… please don’t abuse it, nor misuse it…this land was made for you and me.” So, how does the process work?
Sustainable Land Use and Farming
You’ve heard the age-old saying, “Leave it as you found it.” For farmers subscribing to sustainable land practices, such meaning stretches far beyond tilling the ground, planting and reaping. They must consider rotations, diversification, erosion, water supply, crop or animal stability and productivity for their livelihood and for the health of the environment.
Ultimately, farmers benefit from such resourcefulness, but they also need to be supported for their efforts. Just because something says “Certified Organic” doesn’t mean the farm is part of an organization that subscribes to sustainable land use. Consider supporting your local farmers and farmers market. Persistently persuade your local grocer to invest in farms interested in more than just the bottom line.
To many small farmers, their land is their life. They treat it as a member of the family. They don’t abuse crop-producing fields until they are no longer of use and then venture out to find more land to abuse.
These farmers use careful consideration to farm their land, and it shines through in production. It’s this use of the land that serves as a perfect example of how we can and should relate to the land that we use.
Sustainable Land Use and You
Did it feel like I was pointing a finger at you? Don’t worry. It’s more of a question than a “how to” guide. After all, many of us live in urban environments and the lay of our land equates to a subterranean parking structure that is full of scenic concrete.
However, how can we better sustain the land we use? It starts with opportunity, and when opportunity knocks, we need to answer. When considering sustainable land use, that may very well venture into the realm of land development for our personal lives.
When we buy and build, get outside the box and think about what can go back to the land. When trees come down, put more up. Consider structures and how they can become “part of the land” by adding rooftop or patio gardens. In fact, instead of cutting down trees, why not build a house in one?
When landscaping, consider the addition of a rain garden to add aesthetic beauty while combating erosion. It’s the simple basics of conscious living and Eco-Friendliness, and these examples are few and only surface scratchers. If you really want to consider taking the next step in sustainable land use — then try alternative power sources.
It’s all about relationship, and offering back to the land what it has offered you.
Copyright 2010 Easy Ways to Go Green