Dr Vandana Shiva: Author, Activist, Pioneer, Mother

I see the greatest problem as blindness to the life of the planet; therefore, irresponsible destruction of the planet in every seed, whether it be for food or energy. Food is being produced through a system that is devastating the planet. In fact, what is being produced is not food, it’s not worthy of eating. It’s destroying our health and the health of the planet. Look at energy: why are we relying on coal, when we know there are more efficient alternatives that the earth provides, that won’t harm the planet and don’t violate people’s right in the abusive way that coal does.

What can we do to help challenge this problem?

In terms of ecological threat, at the 1992 Earth Summit the UN identified erosion and extinction of biodiversity, and climate change as the two problems facing our planet. But for both of those problems, that seem to be separate, the answer is ecological, organic agriculture everywhere; in a little pot in your balcony, in your backyard, in your community, on your farm. Why do I say that? Seventyfive per cent of the planetary destruction is coming from industrialised agriculture, whether it is ruination of water or soil, or loss of biodiversity. Forty per cent of all greenhouse gases are coming from a food and agriculture system that is industrialised.