september 21 - 09/21/06 AGRICULTURE Agriculture changing...

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09/21/06 AGRICULTURE Agriculture— changing the earth. Participating in animal husbandry Any given moment—800 mil people are hungry 11% of Americans don’t have enough food to meet their daily needs—food insecurity Atlanta-2000-largest food bank in the country Basic human right to food? Agricultural revolution- deliberately transform the plant. Gave up on the hunting- gathering. The biggest change in the face of the planet. Deforestation to make way for agriculture Localization of people Seed agriculture Vegetative agriculture People conquering nature takes a lot of water to produce water. Poses a potential problem. Beef is expensive. 8 quarter pounders=100000 liters of water. Most of the world doesn’t eat it Myths 1.Not Enough Food to Go Around Reality: Abundance, not scarcity, best describes the world's food supply. Enough wheat, rice and other grains are produced to provide every human being with 3,500 calories a day. That doesn't even count many other commonly eaten foods - vegetables, beans, nuts, root crops, fruits, grass-fed meats, and fish. Enough food is available to provide at least 4.3 pounds of food per person a day worldwide: two and half pounds of grain, beans and nuts, about a pound of fruits and vegetables, and nearly another pound of meat, milk and eggs-enough to make most people fat! The problem is that many people are too poor to buy readily available food. Even most "hungry countries" have enough food for all their people right now. Many are net exporters of food and other agricultural products. 2. Nature's to Blame for Famine Reality: It's too easy to blame nature. Human-made forces are making people increasingly vulnerable to nature's vagaries. Food is always available for those who can afford it—starvation during hard times hits only the poorest. Millions live on the brink of disaster in south Asia, Africa and elsewhere, because they are deprived of land by a powerful few, trapped in the unremitting grip of debt, or miserably paid. Natural events rarely explain deaths; they are simply the final push over the brink. Human institutions
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and policies determine who eats and who starves during hard times. Likewise, in America many homeless die from the cold every winter, yet ultimate responsibility doesn't lie with the weather. The real culprits are an economy that fails to offer everyone opportunities, and a society that places economic efficiency over compassion. 3. Too Many People Reality: Birth rates are falling rapidly worldwide as remaining regions of the Third World begin the demographic transition— when birth rates drop in response to an earlier decline in death rates. Although rapid population growth remains a serious concern in many countries, nowhere does population density explain hunger. For every Bangladesh, a densely populated and hungry country, we find a Nigeria, Brazil or Bolivia, where abundant food resources coexist with hunger. Costa Rica, with only half of
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september 21 - 09/21/06 AGRICULTURE Agriculture changing...

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