Allan Savory urges world leaders to recognise role of livestock in combatting climate change

Beef Central, September 17, 2020


CLIMATE change is a crisis more serious than any wars ever fought, and one that will require millions of more animals on the land to reverse, according to prominent ecologist and regenerative agriculture specialist Dr Allan Savory.

In a 2013 Ted talk which has now been viewed more than 7 million times Dr Savory explained how he learned in the mid 1960s in Africa to use livestock to reverse desertification.

Dr Allan Savory delivering the 2020 Tony Coote Memorial Lecture

Dr Savory has amassed 60 years of practical ground-based observations and evidence-based insights as an ecologist, independent scholar, farmer, soldier, national park manager, political leader, international consultant and educator.

He is perhaps most widely recognised today as the creator holistic management systems for managing natural resources  now progressed through the Savory Institute.

In a live streamed lecture hosted by the Mulloon Institute last night, Dr Savory said Australians and all nations face grave dangers from desertification, mega fires and climate change.

“Like frogs in slowly boiled water the fate of our grand children is in the hands of the current governing generation more than at any time history, he said.

However, the scientific advisors that political and world leaders currently depend on and the many climate conferences and meetings vital to the future of humanity have so far delivered only “conflict, chaos and confusion” he said.

It was an unarguable truth that “if we do not address the cause of a problem we cannot solve it”.

In short, he said, it is clear that climate change “is a management problem”, he said.

Dr Savory, who today spends his time between Zimbabwe and his home in Albuquerque, New Mexico, noted in his presentation that where he lives there are large national parks that are shocking examples of environmental destruction, biodiversity loss and desertification contributing to climate change, managed by governments and the world’s large environmental organisations.

“No one can blame coal, oil, livestock, greed, corruption or anything, but management by the best of our scientists,” he said.

“If ever there was a greater case of dead canaries warning us that we are destroying our human habitat I cannot imagine it.”

It is going to require millions more animals on the land to reverse desertification, than we can even imagine today, after centuries of belief that too many animals cause desertification.

“Thankfully today, due to training thousands of people and the Ted talk going to over 7 million people, millions of people were today are of things like capped soil and oxidation and are saying that we need to use livestock to mimic nature.”

Dr Savory said that without the use of livestock as a tool it would simply not be possible to reverse desertification and the major role it plays in climate change.

In his presentation Dr Savory explains why climate change is a management problem, and his thoughts on the policy and action that leaders like Prime Minister Scott Morrison should be implementing.



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  1. Brad Bellinger, September 17, 2020

    After 2 years of study I am now implementing Savory’s principles on my farm. Allan has learnt the hard way through experience like the Churchill motto he has never ever given up.

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