Soil-conservation farming is gaining converts as farmers increasingly face extreme weather, high production costs, and increasing government regulation of agriculture pollution of waterways. What exactly is it?
"It's a massive paradigm shift" says Ray Archuleta, an agronomist at the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRDC) in the United States as recently quoted by the New York Times. Government surveys indicated that the use of no-tilling farming has grown very rapidly and now accounts for over one-third of cropland in the US.
A new book aptly named Rust: The Longest War is by Jonathan Waldman. It outlines the full story of corrosion, its causes, its consequences, and most notably the people who fight it
The basic science of rust is the chemical reaction between oxygen and iron, although Jonathan Waldman applies the term more generally as the oxidation of any metal.
Just one brand of coffee, namely coffee arabica is primarily grown throughout the world to meet our coffee desires. But it cannot survive at the high temperatures foreseen for the coming decades come true, it death form warming is seen as early as 2080.
The RealReturnEnvironment (RRE) portfolio has been liquidated this past week as US benchmarks for the small, medium and S&P 500 reached record highs. Price earnings ratios are stretched and while it is always possible that further equity gains are available, there is a real risk that equities will hit a downdraft given the still pending political and debt issues in Europe and the slowing economic growth in Asia. Debt markets are also under stress as interest rates will no doubt begin to rise in the United States in the coming months so that capital values will suffer. As a result it is felt prudent for the RRE portfolio to go into 100% cash for the foreseeable future and this section will be suspended over this time frame.
Equity markets were down last week taking levels back to the mid December levels reflecting the weak earnings reports in the US and the problematic Greek election outturns. Apple was an exception with its great iPhone 6 sales, notably in China. The RealReturnEnvironment (RRE) portfolio was up 2.31% from the end of the year 2014 (see below).
The markets are very volatile with the pending European Central Bank decisions on quantitative easing against the backdrop of the unlinking of the Swiss Franc form the Euro and those major disruptions. Fortunately the RealReturnEnvironment (RRE) portfolio is not exposed to Europe and while it has fallen during the past week, the declines have been relatively modest as the RRE portfolio has only given up the previous week's 1% gains since December 31.The portfolio position so far in 2015 is now relatively unchanged. See below.
Real Return Environment is intended to serve the needs of students, researchers and investors by providing topical articles, country data, literature references and investment insights on topics such as primary energy use.
"Real Return Environment is intended to serve the needs of students, researchers and investors by providing topical articles, country data, literature references and investment insights on topics such as primary energy use."