CAN WE SATISFY THE WORLDWIDE DEMAND FOR FOOD AND STILL PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT Free essay! Download now
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CAN WE SATISFY THE WORLDWIDE DEMAND FOR FOOD AND STILL PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT
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DescriptionCAN WE SATISFY THE WORLDWIDE DEMAND FOR FOOD AND STILL PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT
CAN WE SATISFY THE WORLDWIDE DEMAND FOR FOOD AND STILL PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT?
As the world population perpetually increases, world leaders are left perplexed by the big question of how to feed the hoi polloi. Over the decades, technology has evolved and has conceived breakthroughs such as the Green Revolution, satisfying the worldwide demand for food by maximising food production. Though technology has been successful, high-yield farming techniques have severely vitiated the environment ?deforestation, land degradation, biodiversity loss, climate change are just some to name; environmental degradation has become inherent to agriculture. However, population is not the only thing burgeoning: technology is progressively advancing and will yet again reach another milestone in sustaining worldwide food demand while leaving the environment, unscathed.
Livestock production, or rather, rapacious meat eaters are the chief culprits of environmental degradation. In the production of livestock, a Brobdingnagian area of forests is cleared for cattle grazing, obliterating both a multitude of species and their habitats. Such pastures take up a massive 30% of the planet’s surface and in the Amazon basin, 70% of previously forested areas are now occupied by such pastures; imagine how much biodiversity were eradicated! Also, these livestock alone produce 51% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, aggravating climate change. Recently, however, meat or in vitro meat has been produced artificially in the lab that is tantamount to the traditionally produced meat. Though, the manufactured meat is exorbitant, it could be a substitution for the traditional meat in the near future. This way, so much of our valuable forest can be conserved while keeping greenhouse gas emissions in check.
Another way of supposedly sustaining our environment is aquaculture. However, aquaculture is grossly misinterpreted: aquaculture is as much an environmental degradation scourge as cattle ranching. In aquaculture, no doubt, food production is high and efficient; however, a single aqua farm of 200,000 fish produces as much waste as a city of 60,000 people. These wastes are left untreated and left to sink to the depths of the ocean, killing bottom-dwellers. Also, over 270,000 hectares of Indonesian mangroves have been cleared to establish aqua farms; again, biodiversity is compromised. Worse, after a decade, the farms are abandoned due to toxin build-up and nutrient loss. With more stringent rules, fish farming can be environment-friendly. As fish manure is rich in nutrient and should be utilised and not left to decompose and sink into oblivion.
The Green Revolution, which will be remembered for a long time to come, was a quintessential solution to worldwide food demands in the late 1960s, though it has not attenuated the environmental degradation in any way. The high-yield crops which were genetically modified strains that need copious amounts of water to grow. In the ...
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