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Documentary Review: Kiss the Ground - Başak Bozoğlu

Our world is trying to tackle the climate crisis in many different areas; therefore, it is of great importance to attract people's attention and include them in the process. Today I want to highlight a new documentary, "Kiss the Ground," on Netflix. If you are a little bored of watching content that the end of the world is coming, all resources are drain away, and you may love this documentary more with a solution-oriented perspective.

Generally, when climate problems come to mind, it is highlighted the necessity of struggle in many areas such as drought, deterioration of seasonal norms, pollution of the oceans, melting of glaciers, extinction of animal species. Most of the time, people hear the most about the harm of carbon dioxide in the first place in the climate problems and how bad it is, and the need to reduce carbon emission. Of course, reducing carbon emissions with renewable energy solutions and reducing fossil fuels plays a crucial role in this regard. However, "Kiss the Ground" focuses on the carbon dioxide in the soil as a solution.

Carbon dioxide is one of the fundamental elements for both the human body and earth. Sixteen percent of the human body is made up of carbon, and we can live on the earth with the shield of the atmosphere above the earth. Carbon dioxide is necessary for living life, but it should also be under control. The amount of carbon in the air has reached critical levels along with fossil fuels, industries, and vehicles, and we can change this situation on the opposite with renewable energy. But the solution can be more straightforward and under our feet.

Ray Archuleta, a conservation agronomist, claims that if people get the soil right, they can fix a lot of issues. Healthy soil means that healthy plants, healthy animals, healthy water, and a healthy climate. The reason is that soil has the unique ability to sequester carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. Since the kinder garden, we know that plants convert carbon dioxide to oxygen, but the soil absorbs carbon dioxide and feeds microorganisms in the soil. Archuleta defends that when people imitate nature, they can use less product in agriculture and also can gain more money with diversity in the product line.

The soil means food at the same time, and food means human health. The quality of the soil also affects the quality of food. Since toxic chemicals used in agriculture to obtain more food production in a shorter time have been used in the soil, the soil loses its natural microorganisms and leads lands to erosion. This toxic chemicals in the soil destroy the food production system. Also, toxic chemicals are passed on to humans through food and causing cancer, birth defects, and attention deficit disorder.

Living plants have a vital role in reversing global warming. If important steps are taken, they can be a solution to global warming in decades, not centuries. In 2015, Stephane Le Fall, French Minister of Agriculture, offered a proposal for a solution on climate change at United Nations Climate Change Conference. Le Fall claims that people are able to implement an actual answer to struggle against climate change, an answer that could equal the same amount of carbon humanity emits each year. The soil environment can hold more carbon in the atmosphere. The solution will not come up with the one country; the countries whose are the big carbon dioxide emitters should join in the fight against climate change bring a solution from micro-scale to macro scale. This solution's significance is that the scales and measurements show that reducing carbon emission is not enough for the world now.

Electricity cars and renewable energy are significant, and they should be applied, but they will not alter the tremendous amount of carbon we have put in the atmosphere in the decades. The earth needs to drawdown; once it can be achieved in the twenty years, the earth will start cooling, and it is possible with growing farms and plants in a completely different way than today. Various steps can be implemented to contribute to the solution, such as turning food waste into composting, encouraging people to recycle, implementing agricultural policies, and educating farmers to turn agriculture into its nature.

“Kiss the Ground” shows you one of the vital solutions to overcome the climate crisis in a historical, political, and humanitarian framework. You can see how nature can renew itself with its power and how each individual can contribute to the solution with tiny practices.


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