Talkin’ Dirty: Soil Solutions
Posted on May 20, 2014

This will be a great event in Santa Fe this Wednesday March 12th with
Carbon Economy Series.

Learn all about the soil foodweb and compost tea technology with the knowledgeable Dr.
Elaine Ingham.

Buy your tickets today!

Come see Dr. Elaine Ingham!

March 12-13, 2014
Wednesday March 12 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Lecture:  Introduction to the Soil Food Web
Santa Fe Farmers Market Pavilion
Paseo de Peralto
Santa Fe, NM

Cost – $10.00

Thursday March 13 8:30am – 5:00pm
Workshop:  Soil Food Web and Compost Tea Technology
Northern New Mexico College
921 N. Paseo De Onate, Espanola, NM
Main Administration Building
Conference Room AD 101/102

Cost – $99.00 Learn all about the soil food web and compost tea technology with the knowledgable, Dr. Elaine Ingham.  Take a deeper look at the elements of a  healthy soil food web, learn how to analyze and improve your own soil, and  learn to make composts and extracts to strengthen the soil food web.



For more information and to purchase tickets, visit our website:

Are you interested in becoming a sponsor of the series or an event co-sponsor? Or
do you know an organization that would be interested?
We are now looking for sponsors for the Fall 2014 series! 

Please contact Iginia Boccalandro directly at [email protected]

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The Answer Is In Your Soil
Posted on April 10, 2014

Imagine if you could grow anything you wanted with the soil in your yard. Imagine if you could use less water, produce more biomass that is immune to pests, and build fertile soil with less costly inputs. What would you think? Yes, here in New Mexico, shelter from wind and cold would also be a part of the equation, but regardless, if you and I are to understand how the microbiology of the soil works and the needs of our crops, we could potentially grow anything here! Does this sound too good to be true? Well, Dr. Elaine Ingham, PhD, soil biologist and soil food web instructor says just that.

Elaine soil

To be able to grow anything in Northern New Mexico is based on hard science and there is a lot of anecdotal data that confirms its validity. It is basic seventh grade science that we are referring to; allow me to elaborate and simplify to refresh your memory. Our planet for most of its existence has been inhospitable to life until the recent arrival (in terms of planetary time) of a cyanobacterium able to transform sunlight energy into chemical energy and storing bonds of simple sugars. This process known as photosynthesis uses carbon dioxide and water and yields oxygen, one of the most important byproducts, and thus, setting the stage for life as we know it. Most plants, algae and cyanobacteria perform photosynthesis, and therefore maintain atmospheric oxygen levels and supply most of the energy necessary for life. Looking at the succession of life forms evolving over thousands of millions of years, blue green algae could be looked at as the first step. These tiny one-celled organisms, evolved into multi-celled organisms such as plankton. Continuously evolving, the soil is producing annual plants, perennial plants, grasses, shrubs, vegetables, deciduous trees, soft woods, and finally conifers and hard woods, such as the giant sequoia and red woods in Northern California. Paolo Lugari, founder of Las Gaviotas in Colombia, calls all of these, the “vegetative skin of the earth” which creates the conditions for us to be here, alive and living. Since we have harvested a lot of this “vegetative skin” over the years, human settlements tend to create deserts, and that puts us all at risk.

soil food

It turns out that the living microbiology in the soil underneath this “vegetative skin” changes in composition and provides the ideal conditions for each succession species. Since the ratio of bacteria to fungi shifts radically between grasses and conifers, than knowing this can make us much more successful at growing things. Soil that is predominantly bacteria dominant is good for the pioneer species like grasses, and fungi dominant soil is good for the conifers, and vegetables grow best with with equal amounts of bacteria and fungi. Knowing this we can become soil managers and tweak this relationship based on what we want to grow.

Instead of being at the mercy of the soil in the back yard or the chemical and mineral additives that we are encouraged to buy, we can build soil so that the conditions for “our crop” naturally occur. In other words if you want to grow apricots and you know what the ideal soil composition is for these trees, you can make it happen. How do we do this? Dr. Ingham teaches us to feed the life forms that we want. For example, fungi love sugar and carbohydrates, and the hardwood trees’ root systems will exude sugars to attract them and have them work for their benefit. It is an amazing symbiotic relationship that allows trees to get the nutrients they need by attracting the microbiology that produces it. Since trees cannot move to get food, the microorganisms do the moving. You get more bacteria by feeding the bacteria, and by feeding the fungi if we want more fungi. Dr. Ingham teaches biological solutions instead of chemical solutions. All of these processes are natural and follow scientific and physical laws. Once we understand than we can apply these practices and learn to use them, such as composting for greater fertility, reducing soil compaction and being able to store more water. Please visit our web page or call (505) 819-3828 for more information.



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Clean Economy Conference
Posted on January 2, 2014

At Carbon Economy Series, we are welcoming the New Year in a way like never before. Our Clean Economy Conference will prove that there is nothing quite like kicking off 2014 with a bang!

Taking place in Albuquerque, New Mexico from January 30th to February 2nd, the Clean Economy Conference is going to be one for the books. This four day event brings experts of the greening industry together under one roof, to spread their wealth of innovative knowledge to all participants and guests of the event.

It all begins on the evening of January 30th with a Farm to Table/Celebrity Chef Gourmet Steward’s Dinner fundraiser. This fresh style of cuisine will take place from 7-9pm. Farm to table is society’s newest and cleanest way of eating.

The following day will be a pre-conference, full-day workshop all about Local Food Production. Joel Salatin, a third-generation alternative farmer, will lead this portion of the event. Joel will also be the keynote speaker on February 1st and 2nd during the two-day main portion of the Clean Economy Conference. Many other speakers will also grace the stage and lead various sessions, offering a range of knowledge and information on wise water use, regenerative agriculture, ZERO waste, organic food, soil food web, community gardens, urban farming and so much more.

We are so happy to welcome the following speakers to the Clean Economy Conference, and we thank them from the bottom of our hearts for sharing their knowledgeable ways with us.

Margo Covington

Margo Covington-speaker at Clean Economy Conference 2014

When it comes to building sustainable practices that will result in a more resilient future, Margo Covington has strategic and action plans that could get us there. Margo has been designing and implementing sustainable entrepreneurship systems for 29 years. From green tools and awards to zero waste, her impressive list of clients include the Santa Fe Community College, City of Albuquerque, City of Los Angeles and more. Margo holds a ZERI Certification from world-renowned speaker and author, Gunther Pauli. Margo is the Executive Director of Sustainable Communities ZERI NM Inc (a NM 501(c)3), which identifies and links resources needed to foster bioregional collaboration and economic development by finding value in local and regional waste streams.


Heather Harrell

Heather Harrell

Heather Harrell, co-author of "Top-Bar Beekeeping", is helping bees bounce back from Colony Collapse Disorder by focusing her work to the study of multi-use permaculture plantings, which support a diverse network of interrelationships in the natural world. Along with a wide variety of vegetables, she grows medicinal herbs, which offer nectar and pollen to pollinator species.  She is experimenting on how soil biology is affected by using biodynamic methods of planting, and is currently studying compost teas incorporating various types of manures and plant materials.  Heather is owner of For the Love of Bees Farm and sells her vegetables, honey and beeswax products at the Santa Fe Farmers' Market.





Joel Salatin


Joel Salatin, a third generation alternative farmer who has been featured in “Food, Inc.” and “The Omnivore’s Dilemma,” is a masterful speaker whose humor and positive energy guarantee a rewarding experience. Can we feed New Mexico and the world with local food? This is hands down the most frequently asked question to Joel or anyone else who promotes local, solar-driven, carbon-fertilized systems. Even most foodies and environmentalists have a deep-seated assumption that were it not for the petroleum-based fertilizer boom – the green revolution – we could not feed ourselves. Those massive Kansas wheat fields and California almond groves, for most people, represent efficiency and abundance. Nothing could be further from the truth. Backyard gardens and multi-speciation are far more productive per acre. In these workshops, Joel will give you the information and tools to feed your family and articulate a credible “feed the world” argument.

Katherine and Markus Ottmers

Speakers clean economy conference ABQ

If you own a farm or ranch, work on one or are thinking of becoming an agricultural producer Katherine and Markus Ottmers will teach the nitty gritty when it comes to building a regenerative agricultural profit center on marginal land. They use a multidisciplinary approach to attaining resiliency in sustainable farming, one that integrates land and water wisely, builds soil, increases biodiversity, mimics natural patterns and puts money in your pocket. The model is an interconnected systems approach with bioremediation, mycology, geomorphology, scaled precision earthworks, impoundments, pulse irrigation, slash on contour, natural spring development, and other techniques utilized in creating multigenerational legacy. Become a part of this new paradigm, and growing movement in land management.




Miguel Santistevan

Miguel Santistevan

With a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from the University of New Mexico and a Master of Science degree in Ecology from the University of California, Davis, Miguel Santistevan is currently a Ph.D. Candidate in Biology at the University of New Mexico.  His research interests are in the traditional acequia-irrigated and dryland agricultural systems of the Upper Rio Grande and Sangre de Cristo mountains. Miguel is certified in Permaculture and ZERI Design and has directed youth-in-agriculture programs such as ePlaza of Hands Across Cultures and the Regional Development Corporation and the Sembrando Semillas youth-in-agriculture project of the New Mexico Acequia Association (NMAA).  He has produced video and public radio programming (¡Que Vivan las Acequias!) with the NMAA and Cultural Energy.  He maintains a conservation farm with his wife and daughter in Taos called Sol Feliz where many visitors have participated in educational presentations, tours, and hands-on workshops (  Miguel serves as Executive Director for a youth-in-agriculture and seed library program through the Agriculture Implementation, Research, and Education non-profit organization he co-founded ( while he serves as a Math, Science, and Sustainability Teacher for Chrysalis Alternative High School.  Miguel has recently been elected Chairman of the Acequia Sur de Río de Don Fernando de Taos for the 2014 & 2015 growing seasons of which he is a parciante (irrigator) and past Mayordomo (ditch boss).  He also serves as a Board Member for the Taos Valley Acequia Association.



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New Year, Fresh Start
Posted on December 12, 2013

It has been a beautiful year of growth for the Carbon Economy Series. To spread knowledge of a cleaner world to people everywhere has been our goal since the very beginning, and this year, we were able to achieve this in a great way. It is time to look to the future though, and with the New Year comes a chance for the world to take a fresh grasp on the practice of sustainable living.

The Clean Economy Series has been busy filling up the 2014 calendar with wonderful events hosted by the most knowledgeable people in the greening industry. Nate Downey will return at the end of February with a two-day workshop titled “Water is the New Solar.” In April, we will welcome Toby Hemenway to Dallas to lead a talk on “Urban Sustainable Principles and Practices.” This, friends, is only the beginning of our plans for the upcoming year.

Over the past months, we have been putting our hearts and souls into the building of an event to take place at the end of January: the Clean Economy Conference. This conference will teach building resilience through sustainable practices. This is a four-day event, kicking off the evening of January 30th with a farm to table/celebrity chef Gourmet Steward’s Dinner fundraiser. The following three days will see Joel Salatin, a third generation alternative farmer, leading workshops and talks on Local Food Production, teaching that feeding the world via backyard gardens is nothing short of possible.


Simply put, 2013 has been an invaluable year, an innovative one in which the Carbon Economy Series brought people together to take part in greening the world. But the New Year will bring new possibilities and the chance to spread more knowledge to more households around the world. We are very much looking forward to 2014, and we hope you’ll join us in making this year the best one yet, for the sake of our earth and every being it holds. 



The Building of the Carbon Economy Series
Posted on November 7, 2013

This time of year tends to bring to mind many memories and leaves me reminiscing through the past. The founding of the Carbon Economy Series is rooted in a lifetime of wonder and knowledge.

I am still the little girl who turned over the rocks to see what was under them. Always wanting to know how things worked, I removed every screw, nut and bolt from my first bike at about three and a half years old. Being the daughter of two brilliant engineers trained to solve problems, I had fantastic role models from whom I’ve received encouragement my entire life. Like my parents, I am constantly looking for ways to improve existing systems.


The Carbon Economy Series was born in the search for what is good, what works and what can be improved in the areas of health, environment and high performance. It has been a life-long commitment to excellence and determining what works for the good of all.

In 2005, I heard a very compelling reason for me to spread this knowledge – if we increased the soil by 3 inches on all arable land, we would sequester enough carbon from the atmosphere to stabilize climate change. When we grow biomass, we grow food, conserve water, store water in soil, increase public health, and reduce our dependence on oil, pesticides and fertilizers. At the same time, we increase biodiversity and sequester carbon to boot. It is a win, win situation.

I am forever grateful for every step in the building of the Carbon Economy Series. As a small non-profit, we seek the most powerful, innovative speakers in the areas of sustainable living and ecological education to bring to college campuses in New Mexico and Texas. To be in the greening industry during this vital time in history is an irreplaceable feeling that fuels me to discover more knowledge and educate the people around me. The delicate balance of our atmosphere is at stake, and I am grateful to be a part of the solution.


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