Lecture 13

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Lecture 13
2011-11-01 23:58:16
Mitigating Effects Agriculture

EVRN 148
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  1. Undernutrition
    receiving fewer calories than the minimum dietary energy requirement
  2. Malnourishment
    • Nutritional imbalance (contrast to Undernourishment = not enough food, but basically balanced)
    • caused by:
    • lack of specific nutrients in the diet
    • inability to absorb or use essential nutrients
  3. Obesity
    roughly 30 lbs or more overweight; caused by too little exercise and consuming 1/3 calories more than are required per day
  4. Kwashiorkor
    “displaced child” occurs mainly in children whose diet lacks high quality protein
  5. Marasmus
    "To Waste Away" - Caused by a diet low in both protein and calories
  6. Anemia
    caused by Iron deficiency; is the most common dietary deficiency in the world and is most severe in India
  7. Iodine deficiency
    causes goiter, hyperthyroidism
  8. Environmental consequences of the green revolution
    • Positive effects: Prevented some deforestation and land conversion
    • Preserved biodiversity and ecosystems
    • Negative: Pollution, erosion
    • Salinization, desertification
    • Monocultures decrease biodiversity
  9. Food security
    the guarantee of an adequate, reliable, and available food supply to all people at all times
  10. Pesticides
    • poisons that target pest organisms
    • Types: insecticides, herbicides, fungicides
    • Advantages: save human lives, increase profits, work faster/better than alternatives
    • Disadvantages: accelerate development of genetic resistance to pesticides, very little actually reaches target, harmful to humans, some harm to wildlife
  11. Pesticide treadmill
    chemists increase chemical toxicity to compete with resistant pests
  12. Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
    Ecologically based pest-control strategy that integrates use of cultivation practices, biological control and limited use of pesticides
  13. Genetic Engineering
    • Adding, deleting, or modifying DNA in the lab
    • Environmental benefits: reduced use of chemical insecticides, increased no-till farming, decreased irrigation, deforestation, land conversion
    • Negatives: increased herbicide use affects health and habitats, some GM fields support less biodiversity
  14. GMO
    Genetically Modified Organism
  15. Recombinant DNA
    DNA spliced together from more than one organism
  16. Precautionary principle
    don’t undertake a new action until the effects of that action are understood
  17. The GM debate involves ethics
    • People don’t like “tinkering” with the food supply
    • Multinational corporations threaten the small farmer
    • With increasing use, people are forced to use GM products, or go to special effort to avoid them
    • Research is funded by corporations that profit if GM foods are approved for use
    • GM crops have not eradicated hunger
    • GM crops do not focus on increased nutrition, drought tolerance, etc.
  18. The future of GM foods
    • Europeans demand that GM foods are labeled
    • U.S. consumers have mostly accepted GM crops
    • Most don’t realize most food contains GM products
    • The U.S. sued the European Union before the World Trade Organization for hindering free trade
  19. Our food choices are also energy choices
    • Eating meat is far less energy efficient than eating crops
    • 90% of energy is lost from one trophic level to the next
    • Eating lower on the food chain feeds more people
    • Some animals convert grain into meat more efficiently than others
    • Feedlot beef is particularly inefficient
  20. What leads to feedlot agriculture?
    • high consumption
    • Feedlots (factory farms) = Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations
  21. Aquaculture
    • raising aquatic organisms in a controlled environment
    • Benefits: A reliable protein source, can be sustainable, reduces pressure on overharvested wild fish, energy efficient
    • Drawbacks: Diseases require expensive antibiotics, lots of waste, uses grain, escaped GM fish introduce disease or outcompete wild fish
  22. Sustainable agriculture
    does not deplete soil, pollute water, or decrease genetic diversity
  23. Low-input agriculture
    uses smaller amounts of pesticide, fertilizers, growth hormones, water, and fossil fuels than industrial agriculture
  24. Organic agriculture
    • uses no synthetic fertilizers, insecticides, fungicides or herbicides
    • relies on biological approaches