Monday, April 27, 2009

Blue Gold (Water)

According to data Will and HaHyung found, of all the water on earth only 1.6% is readily available as freshwater. Consider that 70% of this 1.6% (1.12%) is used for current agricultural practice (growing and processing). What are the effects, good and bad from this heavy use? What does it mean for sustainable agriculture?

In this article, read the sections titled Water Quality as Global Issue and the section about irrigation under Agricultural Impacts on Water Quality. On the blog write your own opinion about the article and comment on what someone else has written. Then, on paper, respond to the following;
1. Define three of the agricultural activities listed in table 5
2. What is a major limitation for sustainable develoment? How does this relate to the old phrase "Dilution is the solution to polution"?

Friday, April 3, 2009

Food Issues in a Nutshell

Fooders, check out this article by Michael Pollan in the New York Times called Farmer in Chief. You don't have to read the entire article (though you are of course encouraged to), I'm asking that you read and comment on the first two sections, through 'How We Got Here'.

Pollen lays out three goals that could turn the food system around. Is one more important than another? Do you agree with these goals? Did anything in the article surprise you? Does it raise any questions? How are you affected by the current system. How does this relate to modeling farms after ecosystems?

Please elaborate on your comments:)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

True Cost of Food

Hello Gardeners!

We talked a bit about food systems, but to wrap it all up, watch this 15 minute video put out by the Sierra Club called the true cost of food. If the link doesn't work just google 'true cost of food'. Comment on the video and at least one other person's comment.

What was your impression? Did anything in particular stand out? Have you considered these other implications when buying or eating? How does food affect the environment, economies, communities, your health? How does this relate to learning to grow some of your own food?

Have fun!