Browsing Tag

Climate Change

Environment

How to Develop Climate-Smart Agriculture

February 26, 2020
climate smart agriculture

Climate change has become a worldwide topic of discussion lately, and for good reason. Scientists warn that we need to act fast and collaborate to mitigate the effects of climate change and start doing things differently to halt the speed of global warming. One of the broad ways to do that is called climate-smart agriculture (CSA).

What Is Climate-Smart Agriculture? 

Climate-smart agriculture uses a variety of techniques to increase the productivity levels of farmland while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and facilitating other positive changes to help the planet. For example, some ongoing projects falling under this umbrella focus on conserving water, reducing pesticides and promoting soil health and practicing agroforestry. 

 

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Environment

What Are the Objectives of Agricultural Policy and Why Do They Matter?

February 24, 2020
objectives of agricultural policy

Each year sees a new round of farm-based policies. Some laws are more effective than others, and not all meet expectations — however, the core objectives of agricultural policy matter. People are ultimately seeking better ways to run their farms and do business, and creating new rules can help.

Policies exist for everything from water management to native seed harvesting. Regulation is necessary for ensuring worker and animal wellness, proper cropping methods and much more. In an ideal world, a practical set of agricultural guidelines would keep operations running smoothly while putting all living beings as the top priorities. Until we reach that point, people will continue voicing their opinions about much-needed changes.

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Environment

Local Food Sales on the Rise With More People Going Green

February 12, 2020
local food sales

In light of the global warming crisis, genetically modified produce and inhumanely sourced meats, more consumers are choosing to buy local. The green revolution is in full swing, and people want to know where their food comes from. They want to know with confidence they are making the best, most sustainable choice. 

When consumers decide to buy locally sourced produce, they’re doing just that. Farmers’ markets, farm-to-table restaurants and you-pick produce all benefit the community, environment and consumers in several ways. Here are some of the benefits of buying your food locally.

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Wildlife

Should We Move Toward Biological Pest Control Methods?

February 7, 2020
biological pest control

If humans lacked effective ways to keep pests at bay, gardens and lawns would be overrun with unwanted visitors that could eat plants and trigger other undesirable effects. One method of interest is biological pest control. It centers on introducing living organisms that display predatory behaviors toward the pests rather than relying on chemicals to do the job.

Research shows there are many downsides to using non-biological pest control measures. For example, the chemicals pose dangers to kids and pets, and there are issues with the chemicals not reaching their intended targets. Additionally, ongoing use can cause resistance, requiring people to use more of a product to get the same results once achievable with a smaller amount. 

When methods of getting rid of nature’s nuisances prove ineffective, agricultural professionals often waste money when, perhaps, they should have investigated different options sooner. A study from the Zoological Society of London recently found that the overuse of an herbicide to control a weed that harms winter-wheat fields takes a £400 million bite out of the United Kingdom’s economy every year. 

Since the conventional ways of pest management have these negatives and others, more people wonder if now is the time to embrace biological pest controls. 

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Green Technology

Does Our Food Supply Chain Need an Overhaul?

January 31, 2020
food supply chain

The food supply chain and agricultural operations must see a considerable overhaul if we wish to continue thriving long into the future. 

There are several reasons why this is the case. For starters, a growing population means a higher demand for food and fresh goods. Next, the current climate and general development mean fewer available lands for farming and cultivation, so the space we do have must be more efficient than ever. Finally, the current state of the entire food and agricultural industry is contributing significantly to climate breakdown. In other words, it directly influences the depletion of natural resources and puts a strain on the environment in many ways.

If related industries do not see a change soon, we’re inevitably headed for disaster. A recent report by the RSA Food and Farming Countryside Commission in the U.K. explains just how important it is that the entire food industry becomes sustainable. A “catastrophic” climate breakdown is imminent. It’s not some fictional, dystopian future but one that’s playing out right this instant.

What does it all mean? What is the most important thing to take away from all this?

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Green Technology

How Agricultural Transportation Can Be More Sustainable

January 29, 2020
agricultural transportation

Vehicles are convenient and often irreplaceable in agricultural operations. But they’re also energy-intensive and pollution-heavy despite all the good they do in streamlining processes. Many companies target food production when greening their supply chain, but not all of them focus on transportation with equal weight. 

Agricultural transportation doesn’t have to remain as unsustainable as it currently is, however. Cleaner options exist for shipping goods without harming our atmosphere or water sources. The incentives for widespread adaptation are plenty — companies could have better products, healthier cattle and trustworthy reputations. Eco-friendly shipping affects every part of the supply chain.

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Environment

The Top Alternative Agriculture Methods You Should Be Aware Of

January 24, 2020
alternative agriculture methods

Agriculture or farming is something that might sound like it can only be accomplished on a massive industrial scale, but everyone can enjoy the benefits of growing their own food or raising their own livestock. However, for small-scale efforts, especially those that are concerned about the impact their farms will have on the environment, traditional agricultural methods aren’t going to be the best option. With that in mind, here are the top alternative agriculture methods you should be aware of. 

1. Organic Farming

The organic farming movement helps to prevent water pollution and other environmental damage while increasing yields. Some studies have shown that corn plants, grown organically, can produce up to 30% more corn than when grown traditionally. Not only are you getting more from your crop, but you’re accomplishing the same task without jeopardizing your local environment.  

Focus on truly organic farming methods rather than those that claim to be organic but rely on dangerous chemicals.  Many of the organic pesticides, such as pyrethrins, which are derived from dried chrysanthemum flowers, are just as toxic as the non-organic chemicals — and sometimes even more so.  

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Green Technology

LEED Certification Checklist: What You Need to Know Before Applying for Certification

December 11, 2019
leed certification checklist

Are you a builder who wants to make an impact on the world? If so, consider LEED Certification for your next project. With 1.85 million square feet of construction space certified each day, this is the most widely used green building rating system in the world.

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is a program focused primarily on new, commercial-building projects. This certification uses a points system. The more points you earn on the grading scale, the higher you’ll rate. 

The main benefit of certification is the environmental boost. LEED-certified buildings are also energy- and water-efficient. Compared to conventional buildings, they have higher rental rates, are healthier and safer for occupants and represent the values of the organization.

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Environment, Wildlife

Making Livestock Agriculture Sustainable and Cost-Effective

December 4, 2019
livestock agriculture

Livestock agriculture is a farming practice that involves raising animals for food and byproducts, such as wool, oils and leather. Humans have used this practice for centuries. Yet the industry has changed significantly with the introduction of various technologies, an ever-growing population, the societal push for eco-friendly initiatives and the demand for transparency.

Farmers today are concerned about their crops and herd. They also fret over future operations. How long can they remain profitable? More than 1 billion people depend on livestock agriculture to make a living and provide resources. With pressure to become an eco-friendly industry, farmers need to consider how to make the practice sustainable and cost-effective.

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Environment

What Are the Effects of Factory Farming on the Environment?

November 27, 2019
factory farming and the environment

The replacement of small-scale farms with industrial agriculture over the past 50 years has changed the world environmentally, economically and socially. The talk around factory farming and the environment is widespread. For centuries, we relied on practices that minimized the impact on the land, called regenerative agriculture. Today, however, factory farms spread across vast swathes of the world’s arable land.

The impact of open-air lagoons, methane gas, carbon emissions and deforestation is irreparably changing our environment. Our global food industry contributes to global warming throughout the supply chain, creating a negative environmental impact at every level of production.

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