Hello. Paul Newell is indeed a worker of wonders. Let’s take a deep breath and consider the wider view. Every piece of the earth – like all things that exist on and in it, live in a continuous state called ENTROPY, that is everything is eroding away, drying and dying.
The sun strips hydrogen away from the atmosphere at every moment and that came principally from the degradation of rock.
Some of that degradation is caused by agricultural activities and then water carries it away into streams and rivers – erosion. Mr Newell can slow that event by better farm practices like he does in planting trees and growing grasses, but it will not stop and the result is desertification.
That the earth had more plant life along the way is shown by science and the study of palaeontology; animals and man have accelerated this loss, not to mention bush fires started by volcanoes and lightning.
Plants treat oxygen as a poison and exude it so that lightning can fuse oxygen with hydrogen to create water – nothing else does. Self-replacing soil is a result of entropy and erosion – it just gets moved from place to place by water and wind.
To say any of us do not consume resources is a fallacy because the minerals freed by the entropic act are gathered into plant and animal life by their diet, and that will include the products consumed as a result of ‘sustainable’ land practices by devoted farmers.
A final note on deserts; research has shown that the edges of the Saharan and other great deserts are receding (the greening earth), and that has been attributed to an increase in carbon dioxide levels allowing plants to thrive and spread into the areas previously lost. Nothing exists in isolation and every act has it’s corollary.
That mankind has gathered into communities for efficiency and safety causes a need to service that society because all cannot be land owners across the wider area of the Belubula and Lachlan catchments and in that it behoves those who are so fortunate to direct resources toward supporting these communities – much like using these gatherings of people as a market for reward for those who produce from the land for profit in many guises, even if
just for the self-satisfaction from doing a ‘good’ job.
We still haven’t addressed the real need for the dam/s.