Lecture 17 - Announcements Tutorial#4...

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1 ENV200H1S Agriculture March 17, 2011 1 Announcements Tutorial #4–water runs next week, worksheet now posted Remember best 3 out of 4 tutorials will make up 30% of your final grade 2 Outline Environmental Impacts of Agriculture Fundamentals of Soils Future of Agriculture GMOs Sustainable agriculture 3 Environmental concerns associated with agricultural activities Land degradation Soil productivity Erosion Salinization Habitat fragmentation Water quality Animal and human health issues Increased vulnerability of monocultures (climate change, diseases) Effects of biotechnology on biodiversity, and overall concerns with GMOs Industrialization of agriculture 4 Environmental Impacts Air, water pollution Feedlot agriculture is the norm 5 Meat Production Meat is an important source of high quality protein Almost 4 billion cattle, sheep, and goats graze on 42% of the world’s rangeland Per capita meat production more than doubled 1950 2003 and is predicted to double again by 2050 To meet rising demand, feedlots account for 43% of world’s beef production, half of pork production, and three fourth of poultry production 6
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2 Intensive Livestock Operations (ILOs) Where more than 300 animal units are confined in facilities at a density of 43 animal units per acre for more than 90 consecutive days, and where the producer has to manage the manure generated at the facilities Alberta Agriculture Animal unit – number of animals that will excrete 73kg of total nitrogen over a 12 month period (1 cow/60,000 chickens/1500 hogs) 7 Manure! – Industrial scale waste problems One 454kg feedlot steer produces ~27kg of manure daily (9,954 kg annually) “Feedlot Alley”–a small region north of Lethbridge, Alberta, houses Canada’s largest concentration of livestock: ~ 500,000 cattle, 200,000 hogs, and 600,000 poultry Generates volume of manure equivalent to waste from a city of 8 million 8 After decomposing for six eight months, manure can be distributed on fields as fertilizer Since hauling manure beyond 18km is uneconomical, nutrients in the manure seldom go back to the fields where the feed grain was produced
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Lecture 17 - Announcements Tutorial#4...

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