from the corn belt to the gulf societal and environmental implications of alternative agricultural futures rff press

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From The Corn Belt To The Gulf

Author : Joan I Nassauer
ISBN : 9781136525353
Genre : Law
File Size : 60. 51 MB
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Nutrients from farms in the Mississippi River Basin are the leading cause of the Gulf of Mexicos 'Dead Zone,' a 5,000 to 7,000 square mile region where declining oxygen levels are threatening the survival of marine life. From the Corn Belt to the Gulf explores how new agricultural policy can help alleviate this problem, and at the same time improve water quality overall, enhance biodiversity, improve the quality of life for the people who live and work in Corn Belt communities, and relieve downstream flooding. The themes of the book are the far-reaching environmental impacts of Corn Belt agriculture, including associated economic and social effects at multiple spatial scales - and the potential for future agricultural policy to address those impacts through changes in agricultural landscapes and practices. We know that the environmental 'footprint' of Corn Belt agriculture extends beyond farmland and adjacent lakes and streams to groundwater, rivers, cities downstream, into the Gulf of Mexico, and, ultimately, to global oceanic and atmospheric systems. And we acknowledge that agricultural policies, including commodity support payments, have economic impacts at the national and international levels. Pressing negotiations with Americas trade partners, along with increasing societal attention to both the costs and environmental effects of current agricultural policy, are creating momentum for policy change. From the Corn Belt to the Gulf presents innovative, integrated assessments of the agriculture and ecological systems in the Mississippi River Basin along with studies of local Iowa agricultural watersheds. Contributors from multiple academic and professional disciplines discuss how agricultural policies have contributed to current environmental conditions, and, in what the authors term 'alternative futures' for agricultural landscapes, envision how new policy can help achieve more beneficial patterns.

Toward Sustainable Agricultural Systems In The 21st Century

Author : National Research Council
ISBN : 0309157498
Genre : Technology & Engineering
File Size : 85. 11 MB
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In the last 20 years, there has been a remarkable emergence of innovations and technological advances that are generating promising changes and opportunities for sustainable agriculture, yet at the same time the agricultural sector worldwide faces numerous daunting challenges. Not only is the agricultural sector expected to produce adequate food, fiber, and feed, and contribute to biofuels to meet the needs of a rising global population, it is expected to do so under increasingly scarce natural resources and climate change. Growing awareness of the unintended impacts associated with some agricultural production practices has led to heightened societal expectations for improved environmental, community, labor, and animal welfare standards in agriculture. Toward Sustainable Agricultural Systems in the 21st Century assesses the scientific evidence for the strengths and weaknesses of different production, marketing, and policy approaches for improving and reducing the costs and unintended consequences of agricultural production. It discusses the principles underlying farming systems and practices that could improve the sustainability. It also explores how those lessons learned could be applied to agriculture in different regional and international settings, with an emphasis on sub-Saharan Africa. By focusing on a systems approach to improving the sustainability of U.S. agriculture, this book can have a profound impact on the development and implementation of sustainable farming systems. Toward Sustainable Agricultural Systems in the 21st Century serves as a valuable resource for policy makers, farmers, experts in food production and agribusiness, and federal regulatory agencies.

Journal Of Environmental Law And Litigation

Author :
ISBN : UCSD:31822036768364
Genre : Environmental law
File Size : 65. 31 MB
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Choice

Author :
ISBN : UOM:39015079680479
Genre : Best books
File Size : 73. 5 MB
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Nature S Matrix

Author : Ivette Perfecto
ISBN : 9781849770132
Genre : Nature
File Size : 89. 10 MB
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Landscapes are frequently seen as fragments of natural habitat surrounded by a 'sea' of agriculture. But recent ecological theory shows that the nature of these fragments is not nearly as important for conservation as is the nature of the matrix of agriculture that surrounds them. Local extinctions from conservation fragments are inevitable and must be balanced by migrations if massive extinction is to be avoided. High migration rates only occur in what the authors refer to as 'high quality' matrices, which are created by alternative agroecological techniques, as opposed to the industrial monocultural model of agriculture. The authors argue that the only way to promote such high quality matrices is to work with rural social movements. Their ideas are at odds with the major trends of some of the large conservation organizations that emphasize targeted land purchases of protected areas. They argue that recent advances in ecological research make such a general approach anachronistic and call, rather, for solidarity with the small farmers around the world who are currently struggling to attain food sovereignty.Nature's Matrix proposes a radically new approach to the conservation of biodiversity based on recent advances in the science of ecology plus political realities, particularly in the world's tropical regions.

The State Of The World S Land And Water Resources For Food And Agriculture

Author : Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
ISBN : 9781136498879
Genre : Law
File Size : 76. 81 MB
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The State of the World's Land and Water Resources for Food and Agriculture is FAO's first flagship publication on the global status of land and water resources. It is an 'advocacy' report, to be published every three to five years, and targeted at senior level decision makers in agriculture as well as in other sectors. SOLAW is aimed at sensitizing its target audience on the status of land resources at global and regional levels and FAO's viewpoint on appropriate recommendations for policy formulation. SOLAW focuses on these key dimensions of analysis: (i) quantity, quality of land and water resources, (ii) the rate of use and sustainable management of these resources in the context of relevant socio-economic driving factors and concerns, including food security and poverty, and climate change. This is the first time that a global, baseline status report on land and water resources has been made. It is based on several global spatial databases (e.g. land suitability for agriculture, land use and management, land and water degradation and depletion) for which FAO is the world-recognized data source. Topical and emerging issues on land and water are dealt with in an integrated rather than sectoral manner. The implications of the status and trends are used to advocate remedial interventions which are tailored to major farming systems within different geographic regions.

Tomorrow S Table

Author : Pamela C. Ronald
ISBN : 0199756694
Genre : Science
File Size : 69. 78 MB
Format : PDF
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By the year 2050, Earth's population will double. If we continue with current farming practices, vast amounts of wilderness will be lost, millions of birds and billions of insects will die, and the public will lose billions of dollars as a consequence of environmental degradation. Clearly, there must be a better way to meet the need for increased food production. Written as part memoir, part instruction, and part contemplation, Tomorrow's Table argues that a judicious blend of two important strands of agriculture--genetic engineering and organic farming--is key to helping feed the world's growing population in an ecologically balanced manner. Pamela Ronald, a geneticist, and her husband, Raoul Adamchak, an organic farmer, take the reader inside their lives for roughly a year, allowing us to look over their shoulders so that we can see what geneticists and organic farmers actually do. The reader sees the problems that farmers face, trying to provide larger yields without resorting to expensive or environmentally hazardous chemicals, a problem that will loom larger and larger as the century progresses. They learn how organic farmers and geneticists address these problems. This book is for consumers, farmers, and policy decision makers who want to make food choices and policy that will support ecologically responsible farming practices. It is also for anyone who wants accurate information about organic farming, genetic engineering, and their potential impacts on human health and the environment.

A Framework For Assessing Effects Of The Food System

Author : National Research Council
ISBN : 9780309307833
Genre : Medical
File Size : 40. 95 MB
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How we produce and consume food has a bigger impact on Americans' well-being than any other human activity. The food industry is the largest sector of our economy; food touches everything from our health to the environment, climate change, economic inequality, and the federal budget. From the earliest developments of agriculture, a major goal has been to attain sufficient foods that provide the energy and the nutrients needed for a healthy, active life. Over time, food production, processing, marketing, and consumption have evolved and become highly complex. The challenges of improving the food system in the 21st century will require systemic approaches that take full account of social, economic, ecological, and evolutionary factors. Policy or business interventions involving a segment of the food system often have consequences beyond the original issue the intervention was meant to address. A Framework for Assessing Effects of the Food System develops an analytical framework for assessing effects associated with the ways in which food is grown, processed, distributed, marketed, retailed, and consumed in the United States. The framework will allow users to recognize effects across the full food system, consider all domains and dimensions of effects, account for systems dynamics and complexities, and choose appropriate methods for analysis. This report provides example applications of the framework based on complex questions that are currently under debate: consumption of a healthy and safe diet, food security, animal welfare, and preserving the environment and its resources. A Framework for Assessing Effects of the Food System describes the U.S. food system and provides a brief history of its evolution into the current system. This report identifies some of the real and potential implications of the current system in terms of its health, environmental, and socioeconomic effects along with a sense for the complexities of the system, potential metrics, and some of the data needs that are required to assess the effects. The overview of the food system and the framework described in this report will be an essential resource for decision makers, researchers, and others to examine the possible impacts of alternative policies or agricultural or food processing practices.

Confronting Consumption

Author : Thomas Princen
ISBN : 0262661284
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 88. 65 MB
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Essays that offer ecological, social, and political perspectives on the problem of overconsumption.

Large Lakes

Author : Max M. Tilzer
ISBN : 9783642840777
Genre : Science
File Size : 30. 95 MB
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The vast majority of the world's lakes are small in size and short lived in geological terms. Only 253 of the thousands of lakes on this planet have surface areas larger than 500 square kilometers. At first sight, this statistic would seem to indicate that large lakes are relatively unimportant on a global scale; in fact, however, large lakes contain the bulk of the liquid surface freshwater of the earth. Just Lake Baikal and the Laurentian Great Lakes alone contain more than 38% of the world's total liquid freshwater. Thus, the large lakes of the world accentuate an important feature of the earth's freshwater reserves-its extremely irregular distribution. The energy crisis of the 1970s and 1980s made us aware of the fact that we live on a spaceship with finite, that is, exhaustible resources. On the other hand, the energy crisis led to an overemphasis on all the issues concerning energy supply and all the problems connected with producing new energy. The energy crisis also led us to ignore strong evidence suggesting that water of appropriate quality to be used as a resouce will be used up more quickly than energy will. Although in principle water is a "renewable resource," the world's water reserves are diminishing in two fashions, the effects of which are multiplicative: enhanced consumption and accelerated degradation of quality.

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