In today’s world we are faced with a multitude of challenges that involve the agriculture and natural resource industry. In my opinion the greatest natural resource issue facing our generation is the availability of working land, which encompasses everything from native rangelands to farmland to forest lands. These working lands are important because they produce food, retain rainfall and they help with the natural cycles of the earth.
As more and more people want to get out of the big city’s they find themselves moving to the edge of town thus causing the town to expand, which takes away more working land. For the last decade Texas has been leading the nation in decreasing available acres of working land. This is an issue that is not only affecting my generation, but the future generations. These acres of working land are what allow us to put clothes on our back and food in our bellies. At the same time they allow rainfall to be retained and recharge underground aquifers instead of it running down the sidewalk into the sewage system where no human or animal can use it. They also assist in certain cycles like the carbon and nitrogen cycles, which are important to the overall health of the world’s ecosystems.
One of the factors that we will have to consider when we address this issue is how are we going to be able to conserve the acres of working land we have currently while still supporting our ever-growing population not only in the state of Texas but the whole world. This issue is not just restricted to Texas or the United States, but it is a global issue. Another factor that we find ourselves dealing with is how we are going to be able to feed an ever growing population on decreasing acres of land. This topic is full of controversy, with the push for no genetically modified organisms, but with the use of GMO’s we are able to yield more product on less land with fewer inputs such as fertilizer or herbicides and pesticides. The use of GMO’s would allow us to support our ever-growing population on less land than previous generations. Lastly, we need to develop programs that help inform the general public on the importance of working land. The percentage of people who know the importance of these lands is really small when compared to the entire population. If the general public is not educated on the importance of these lands, then the fight to conserve them might be one we cannot win.
As time moves on and people and cities are expanding we find ourselves losing acres of working land. Working land is not just important to civilization as it is where we get our food and natural resources from, but it is also important to the overall stability of our world’s ecosystems. This issue does not just have a direct effect on the men and woman that work in the agriculture and natural resources field, but it has a direct effect on the entire world.
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