Sunday, October 30, 2016

Exploration 5: If there's a way, Humans will find it...especially when it's corrupting/destroying the Earth - Matthew George

Fresh is a film that covers upon the importance of organic farming as opposed to industrialized farming. Organic farming is what the human race has been doing for centuries since we first learned about how to farm crops and raise animals in the agricultural revolution. Industrialized farming, on the other hand, is what humans strive for because it fills a single idea: efficiency. If it can produce the most product with the least amount of work required people will seek it. Industrialized products have the benefit of being cheaper than organic, but as the film states, "There is no such thing as cheap food, if you're not paying for it at the register then you're paying for it somewhere down the line." True enough, Industrialization brings with it a whole slew of problems, the largest being the separation and destruction of the natural cycle of nature: animals produce manure to help plant growth, and plants get eaten by animals. Industrialization separates that by forcing plants to grow in large identical populations. An excellent example is the banana, which due to all banana's seen in the grocery store sharing identical genetics are expected to die out within a couple of years due to a virus that specifically targets that type. Another good example is the Irish Potato Famine. There are over 40 varieties of potato, the Irish only planted specific variety so when a virus that targeted and kills that one specific type came along-Boom!- every farmer's crop was lost, which lead to the Potato Famine. Then to top it all off because you've got highly vulnerable crops pesticides need to be sprayed over them, which not only risks poisoning our food, but also leads to the birth of super bugs who become resistant to the pesticides after repeated exposure.

Then there are the animals, whose issues are compounded by the fact that the feed they are provided is the result of the previously mentioned industrialized crops who have. For starters organic manure is a powerful nutrient for crops, but manure from industrial cows is highly toxic due to the previously mentioned feed and pesticides, but also to the growth hormones and antibiotics present as well. Which leads me to the next issue: containment. Industrial "efficiency" recommends keeping a large number of animals in a small enclosed space. This also promotes sickness and disease since it can spread easily from animal to animal. Organic farming on the other hand doesn't require antibiotics because they don't have to deal with sick animals in the first place. In addition, from my research into a video used in my Environmental Science class for the Spring 2016 semester at Columbus State Community College, "The Hidden Cost of Hamburgers" goes into more detail on the issue of industrialized cows. Something that was mentioned in this video compared to Fresh is the issue of Cows producing methane, a gas that as stated is 21x more power than CO2 when dealing with Climate Change. This is of course a completely separate issue which then gets tied into the first issue of Industrialization, as I learned from the Environmental Science class led by Instructor Erica Brumbaugh, because by the projected rate of 2050, coastline regions such as New Orleans will be entirely sumberged underwater, which then leads to even more issues as you then have to deal with the displacement of people in a large scale disaster. Plus by 2050 the temperature best reccommended for producing crop such as wheat will shift the area that such crops can be grown so Canada can grow more wheat that the US can-but as you could imagine that's another issue entirely and it just snowballs from there.

This link will take you to the "Hidden Cost of Hamburgers" video, about 8 minutes in length.

This is a genetically modified breed of chicken to not have feathers, for "Convenience", although by removing the feathers you bring in a whole slew of problems, namely the fact that the feathers have functions such as keeping the animal warm and by genetically modifying them to not have feathers you risk an even higher chance of disease and illness.

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