'Peak Farmland' Is Here, Experts Predict, As Crop Yields Rise And Population Growth Slows

  • metta

    Posts: 39099

    Dec 18, 2012 9:38 AM GMT
    'Peak Farmland' Is Here, Experts Predict, As Crop Yields Rise And Population Growth Slows

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/17/peak-farmland_n_2315946.html?ir=green&utm_campaign=121712
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    Dec 18, 2012 4:33 PM GMT
    Vertical farms, yay or nay?
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    Dec 18, 2012 7:04 PM GMT
    Scary thought. Peak fuel comes at the same time as this.
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    Dec 18, 2012 7:16 PM GMT
    mtguy333 saidScary thought. Peak fuel comes at the same time as this.


    Relax, twitter is not life, don't just react upon two words. Had you read the text instead you'd have seen that, if accurate, this is good news.

    It says...

    "More crops for use as biofuels and a shift towards more meat consumption in emerging economies such as China or India - demanding more cropland to feed livestock - would not offset a fall from the peak driven by improved yields, it calculated.

    If correct, the land freed up from crop farming would be some 10 percent of what is currently in use - equivalent to 2.5 times the total area of France, Europe's biggest country bar Russia, or more than all the arable land now farmed in China.

    "We believe that humanity has reached Peak Farmland, and that a large net global restoration of land to nature is ready to begin," said Jesse Ausubel, director of the Program for the Human Environment at the Rockefeller University in New York
    ."

    Never mind that concerning peak oil we know not yet if the USA could wind up being an oil exporter nor if other energy sources might come online before that might become a major issue.

    Contrary to popular belief, the sky is not yet falling.
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    Dec 18, 2012 7:43 PM GMT
    theantijock said
    mtguy333 saidScary thought. Peak fuel comes at the same time as this.


    Relax, twitter is not life, don't just react upon two words. Had you read the text instead you'd have seen that, if accurate, this is good news.

    It says...

    "More crops for use as biofuels and a shift towards more meat consumption in emerging economies such as China or India - demanding more cropland to feed livestock - would not offset a fall from the peak driven by improved yields, it calculated.

    If correct, the land freed up from crop farming would be some 10 percent of what is currently in use - equivalent to 2.5 times the total area of France, Europe's biggest country bar Russia, or more than all the arable land now farmed in China.

    "We believe that humanity has reached Peak Farmland, and that a large net global restoration of land to nature is ready to begin," said Jesse Ausubel, director of the Program for the Human Environment at the Rockefeller University in New York
    ."

    Never mind that concerning peak oil we know not yet if the USA could wind up being an oil exporter nor if other energy sources might come online before that might become a major issue.

    Contrary to popular belief, the sky is not yet falling.


    I hope the article is right. It does appear that there results left out lots of factors. Mostly the erosion rates of soil world wide versus soil formation rates. They have slowed since the 60s due to better practices but even in the US still sre greater then soil formation rates. They also ignored the greater restraints on water worldwide. Currently a large portion of water is coming fro large aquifers underround that also are being depleted faster then they can replenish.

    The happy thought is that scientist are able to develop ways to slow the depletion of the land and grow more crops with less resources. I also wonder how long it will be before genetically altered crops will have to be developed. I hope the human population is slowing its growth and we never reach 8 billion until we can start leaving in space or other planets, moons, etc.
  • metta

    Posts: 39099

    Dec 18, 2012 7:55 PM GMT
    not_superman said
    mtguy333 saidScary thought. Peak fuel comes at the same time as this.

    Don't forget about peak phosphate.


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peak_phosphorus
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    Dec 18, 2012 7:57 PM GMT
    I'm getting a bit fed up of scientists trying to scare the bejesus out of me.
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    Dec 18, 2012 8:17 PM GMT
    Dunno. I think these sort of back-of-the-envelope calculations are unlikely to survive encounter with reality. I see a lot of amazing advances in yield-per-hectare, but they're very capital intensive. So they're really only producing novelty items for rich people.
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    Dec 19, 2012 1:00 AM GMT
    Glad I have 300+ acres out on the hill country. Most of it is wooded, good hunting though. 75 acres of some farming and cattle. That's primarily where we get our meat year round.