The battle over Keystone XL and the future of food on one farm

[ Originally published on this site as post ]

Rick Hammond might look like a man of contradictions to an environmentalist. His methods of farming — using chemicals, satellite-guided machinery, and high-tech seeds to grow corn, soybeans, and beef cattle — might brand him as the enemy. But he’s also an ally, fighting to keep the Keystone pipeline from crossing his land. And, as the journalist Ted Genoways points out, no one is more concerned with sustainability than a family farmer who has held onto land for five generations, and wants it to last for at least another five generations.

But where environmentalists and food-movement activists might see contradictions, Genoways found consistency. There was a logical explanation for Hammond’s choices.

“The people in the food movement have a