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To use every bit of land that is fertile and use the food as to barter for In example: oil,cars,anything of value that our country needs.

When I look at the planet as a whole I see to many people dwindling resources and the fact that our nation has one resource that is being under utilized ( Farming). I live in the mountains and there are areas that is deforested and no effort to replant it with fruit and nut trees as I would suggest. We can grow anything in this country with our diverese climates. Apples,oranges,corn and wheat.How many other countries can that? You need food and water to live among other things. Our capactity to produce food makes it our gold our oil and its renewable. We just need to use every inch of land available.Look at the jobs it would create for example trucking,exporting,proscessing plants. I know people will say we are already doing that' But!!! Look around, are we? Part B: food is power. Why? Everyone needs it but not all areas in this world can produce it. We as a nation need to use this renewable resource as leverage in the world just as the oil producing nations are doing with their oil. The plus is one day they will run out of oil but they will always need food.Food equals jobs and power. No Brainer

  • Apr 4 2012: Of course, vast tracts of land need irrigation. Just look at Nebraska, where mile-wide perfect circles of irrigation zones and one-radian angles sweep across areas, likely using fossil water from the Ogallala Aquifer. Other projects like energy (and sadly, biofuels from corn) require land space. Maybe the issue is not occupying all the land with agricultural, but updating our agricultural methods to include permaculture, hydroponics, vertical farming etc. Low-impact or zero impact farming, alongside non-monoculture and non-GE/GM plantations would help too, especially for simultaneous food crop and cash crop production. First World countries typically produce less agricultural product as a fraction of its total GDP than do developing countries, because developed countries tend to be more service-sector oriented. A great paradox is that the high-agricultural producing countries often have less access to food as money is needed to buy everything, and famines in huge proportions are typically preventable, though some are caused by adverse weather. The American Breadbasket is now under threat from global warming. What we need is better farming methods, otherwise it's unlikely we'll be able to feed more billions of people as the population grows under the stress of reduced arable land (from development and environmental factors) in the coming few decades.
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    Apr 4 2012: Roughly 40% of the world's surface is currently used for farming or grazing cattle. The percentage of arable land is only decreasing through human efforts to gain other resources, such as wood and natural resources (oil, coal, iron etc.). There is however capacity for innovation, more than enough to triple our output of food production. The problem however is energy, the same thing that is fueling your car need also be used for other purposes. So the problem is not just creating a bigger capacity, it is also getting the resources and energy required to support this cause.

    A couple of decades ago we saw the Green Revolution, it increased the output of lands beyond anyone's imagination. We might need something like that again, however with rising opposition for genetically engineered crops and diminishing investment any prospects are steadily being lost by our own ignorance and greed.

    The main problem is, like I said, energy. The energy produce a liter of gasoline is more than that single liter is delivering us. So the problem is not the availability of land/property, but rather the resources needed for upkeep. With today's rising energy cost you can imagine that problems are yet to get worse.
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      Apr 4 2012: The only problem with GM is the companies that are pushing their products out to the public for use without adequate testing time of said product.I'm not against GM but it's technology should be used to enhance a natural resistance to a fine line where such a enhancement doesn't start working against the plant.i.e BT corn.

      We run the risk of Superweeds and Superbugs developing as the natural system adjusts itself around such drastically altered plant systems.

      We need to promote rainbelt plantings that help in rain generation in areas that are under climate stress but even this takes time to assess.Like you said it takes what we have in use now to make more but it doesn't take much energy to put a seed in the ground.

      It's the water that's going to be that biggest problem in the future as world groundwater levels are under severe stress.
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        Apr 4 2012: GM testing is indeed a problem, although it is not the problem of adequate testing. Because companies do all the tests they are required to do. They have to do these tests because else they can't sell their products on the market. The problem is the tests that are not being done, which has to do with the lack of collaboration. Why spend more money than required to test for things not being asked? Not to mention that these governing bodies are severely underfunded.

        Although this development of Superbugs/weeds is not caused by GM primarily, a better cause could be the inadequate use of chemicals used to protect plants. GMF would be engineered in a way that bugs do not favor eating the crops, because they are repelled by something that does not bother us people. The risk is always there, however GM is not the cause. The cause here is inadequate use of these measures through tardiness and ignorance.

        No it doesn't and these initiatives should be supported wherever possible. Especially now with the climate change even though apparent, not something that can't be slowed down by geo-engineering, presumably.

        When it comes to water I'm more of a proponent for good waste-water management. Turning seawater into freshwater is still a thing of the future, which is going to require a lot more thought into new energies. Because in theory we could transform the Sahara in Africa to make it a lustrous paradise, but again we need energy.
  • Apr 4 2012: True but with the global economy us first worlders can get whatever we want with money aka oil. I vote for more self sufficiency which would include agriculture as well as energy. The problem is environmentalists that limit land usage, water usage, policy etc. I come from a small town that grows Potatoes and Beats, the Federal Govt. Shut off our water for a sucker fish that was suddenly endangered. Talk about an uproar. That was 10 years ago. Things seem to have been worked out. since then.