How we can Play a Role in the Solution to our Agriculture Problem
by nmatt3 on April 17, 2015 - 11:03pm
How can we prevent our agriculture system from collapsing? There are an overwhelming number of threats that can potentially collapse our ever-expanding, high-intensity agriculture practices. These threats include land use, soil erosion, water use, and pollution. The most pressing issue as of right now though is water use. Most of the crops grown for our country are located in California. It also just so happens that that area is in the midst of the worst drought in history. There is argument if this drought is the result of climate change perpetuated in part by the agriculture we are using the water for, but there is no argument that there is simply not enough water to continue living in the manner that we have become accustomed to. It is easy to point fingers at certain groups for causing the problem like the meat industry, the wine industry, or the almond industry. The truth though is that it not just one sectors fault and it is not just one sectors problem. For a pound of beef you need roughly 2,400 gallons of water, for a gallon of wine you need roughly 900 gallons of water, and for a pound of almonds you need roughly 1,700 gallons of water. If you consume these products on a daily basis in large quantities then you are contributing to the problem. However, if you limit yourself and enjoy these things in moderation then they can stay around for a much longer time. A steak dinner once a month or a glass of wine a few times a week is a reasonable impact if these are things you enjoy. We must consider the fact that with an ever increasing population we must be mindful of our resource consumption if we wish to continue our current lifestyle.
Katherine Bohrer. This is How Much Water it Takes to Make your Favorite Foods. The Huffington Post. 2014. Available at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/10/13/food-water-footprint_n_5952862....
USDA. California Agriculture Statistics 2012 Crop Year. National Agricultural Statistics Service. 2012. Available at: http://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/California/Publications /California_Ag_Statistics/Reports/2012cas-all.pdf