Thursday, November 5, 2009

Sustainable Agriculture (Blog 5)

Hunger and poverty is a huge problem around the world. From a lecture by Dr. Thurlow over 1.02 billon people are malnourished. An article by Kristi Heim states that Bill Gates is leading the charge in helping out these 1.02 billion people. Improving crop yields will help feed more people and put more money in the pocket of people who farm for a living. However, many times in order to raise crop yields the environment can be effected. There are two main points to solve this problem, saving the environment and keeping getting food into the hands of people who are going hungry.

In order to keep the environment adequate for the next generation Bill Gates wants sustainable agriculture.
“Sustainability rests on the principle that we must meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” UC Davis
The University of California Agriculture Research and Education Program explain the many parts of sustainable agriculture. Sustainable agriculture can be associated with the use of water for farming, the use of soil, energy, and air quality.

Obstacles of topsoil depletion and groundwater contamination should be top priorities when tackling the issue of sustainable agriculture. If the soil eroded the ability to farm the land vanishes and if the groundwater became contaminated the drinking water of many could be sacrificed.

These issues can be solved by educating these people and giving them a helping hand. If a cheap, simple, and widely available solution can be found I believe it could work. With the backing of Bill Gates, professors like John Reganold of Washington State University, and with the growing support of others this problem can be solved.

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