Following Nature’s Trajectory
Young Chiu-chung’s “Enzyme Missiles”
Global yields of agricultural staples are falling as climate change, chemical fertilizers, and pesticides degrade the world’s soils. Adding insult to environmental injury, organic waste often isn’t recycled and properly reintegrated into the soil system.
Enter Young Chiu-chung, an academician with the Academia Sinica and the godfather of Taiwanese research into microbial fertilizers. Young is attempting to update the thousand-year-old practice of using microbes to break down organic waste. His new method catalyzes decomposition with enzymatic reactants, and produces organic fertilizer in just three hours. The approach, which has its origins in the natural processes soils use to convert organic waste into fertilizer, exemplifies the kind of virtuous cycle necessary to keep the Earth fruitful. As Laozi observes in the Dao De Jing, “Humans follow the laws of Earth, Earth follows the laws of Heaven, Heaven follows the laws of the Dao, and the Dao follows the laws of Nature.”