Why is agriculture so bad for the environment?



  1. 0 Votes

    Good question Londyn.

    Agriculture itself isn’t bad for the environment, but when we begin to use intensive agriculture, or processes that will yield greater harvests on the same plot of land, some problems can arise.  Chemicals such as pesticides and fertilizers can contaminate water supplies, and over farming a land can leave the soil barren.  Also, slash and burn agriculture, a form of agriculture primarily found in rain forests, uses massive plots of land to yield smaller results.  This impacts animals habitats. 

    So really, it isn’t agriculture that is bad, but the excessive means that some people take without regard for the consequences their actions have on the land.

    Hope this helps!


    • 0 Votes

      I’d like to add that “slash and burn” agriculture, or swidden agriculture, has been used for thousands of years by indigenous populations as a sustainable method of agriculture – and as long as there is a long enough rotation period, the environment has time to recover.

    • 0 Votes

      Thanks for your comment, xbeatofangelx. With the things I mentioned as being potentially bad for the environment, I tried to express the fact that it is only through their excessive use that the possibility exists for them to be bad. So I agree with you, the methods I mentioned do not have to be bad in general, they can certainly be used in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way, as long as people are thoughtful of the environment when doing so.

  2. 0 Votes

    Well it’s bad in that there is water pollution with irrigation run-off. Then there is the problem with pesticides and genetically modified crops. Here are some links with more information.

  3. 0 Votes

    Agriculture isn’t innately bad for the environment – humans have been “agriculturalists” for thousands of years, living in harmony with the earth. However, the recent industrialization of agriculture and of food in general is damaging to the environment and causes many additional problems such as pesticide and fertilizer overuse, and the degradation of the small farmer community.

  4. 0 Votes

    Agriculture in and of itself is not bad for the environment.  It is the methods and techniques that are environmentally damaging.  Pesticides, herbicides, and antibiotics are just part of it.  Fuel usage by farmers, runoff, and bad practices with raising livestock all contribute.  Transportation of food and livestock also heavily contributes to the dangers asscociated with agriculture.

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