Did the potato famine cause environmental damage?



  1. 0 Votes

    Presuming you mean the great famine in Europe, and especially Ireland, in the 1840s, the disease-caused blight itself was certainly environmental damage; to the extent that you consider humans to be part of the environment, the deaths of at least a million people was environmental damage; the emigration of many more people had long-lasting effects (both positive and negative in the long run) both in Ireland, where they departed from, and in many parts of the US, where many of them emigrated to; there were sociological and political effects that could easily be argued to have had environmental impacts (perhaps both damaging and positive ones).

  2. 0 Votes

    The Potato Famine wreaked havoc across Europe but more attention is paid to Ireland because of their dependence on the crop as a food staple. It was the main food source for poorer Irish- they didn’t have alternative supplementary food sources. It is because of their lack of a well-rounded diet that the famine affected them so drastically. Of course, we must keep in mind that at this time in Ireland, the majority of the ruling, land-owning classes was British. They had instated a colonial rule over the Irish. The destitute Irish population therefore had no access to the sustainable farming techniques that are necessary to avoid such a disaster, such as variegating types of crops. So you see that environmental issues were at play when we look at how and why the famine came to be such an important event.

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