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sustainable development

sustainable development

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Published by: HayyaAli on Feb 13, 2010
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05/23/2013

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SUSTAINABLEDEVELOPMENT INAGRICULTURAL &INDUSTRIAL SECTOR
Submitted to: Sir. Zafar Rashid
[Pick the date]
Submitted By: Pakeeza Bukhari
BSIEM 5th Semester (Roll No: 17)
 
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN AGRICULTURALSECTOR:
SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE:
Sustainable agriculture can be viewed as ecosystem management of complex interactions amongsoil, water, plants, animals, climate, and people. The goal is to integrate all these factors into a production system that is appropriate for the environment, the people, and the economicconditions where the farm is located. Farms become and stay environmentally sustainable byimitating natural systems—creating a farm landscape that mimics as closely as possible thecomplexity of healthy ecosystems. Nature tends to function in cycles, so that waste from one process or system becomes input for another.
COMPARISON OF SUSTAINABLE & INDUSTRIAL AGRICULTURE:
Industrial agriculture, in contrast, tends to function in a linear fashion similar to a factory: inputsgo in one end, and products and waste come out the other. The wastes of industrial agriculture(non-point-source pollution) include suspended soil, nitrates, and phosphates in stream water,and nitrates and pesticides in ground water. It is a premise of sustainable agriculture that a farmis a nature-based system, not a factory. The simpler we try to make agriculture, the morevulnerable we become to natural disasters and marketplace changes. When we try to produce asingle product such as wheat, corn, or soybeans we are taking on huge risk. If instead we,diversify crops and integrate plant and animal agriculture, overhead will be spread over severalenterprises, reducing risk and increasing profit. Table 1 offers some comparisons between twomodels of agriculture—farming as an industrial factory and farming as a biological system.
Comparison of the Industrial andBiological Models of Agriculture
Industrial modelBiological model
Energy intensiveInformation intensiveFarm as factoryFarm as ecosystemMonocultureDiversity of plants and animalsLow-value productsHigher-value products
 
Single-use equipmentMultiple-use equipmentLinear processCyclicalEnterprise separationEnterprise integration
STRATEGIES FOR EMPLOYING SUSTAINABLEDEVELOPMENT IN AGRICULTURAL SECTOR:
i)
STRIVE TO KEEP THE SOIL COVERED THROUGHOUT THE YEAR
Under natural conditions the soil remains covered with a skin of dead plant material, whichmoderates temperature extremes, increases water penetration and storage, and enhances soilaeration. Most importantly, the soil skin maintains oil structure and prevents erosion by softeningthe impact of falling raindrops. Bare ground, on the other hand, is vulnerable to water and winderosion, dries out more quickly, and loses organic matter rapidly. The major productivity costsassociated with soil erosion come from the replacement of lost nutrients and reduced water holding ability, accounting for 50 to 75% of productivity loss (Pimentel et al., 1995). Soilremoved by erosion typically contains about three times more nutrients than the soil left behindand is 1.5 to 5 times richer in organic matter (Pimentel et al., 1995). This organic matter loss notonly results in reduced water holding capacity and degraded soil aggregation, but also loss of  plant nutrients, which must then be replaced with fertilizers. Five tons of topsoil (the USDA"tolerance level" for erosion) can easily contain 100 pounds of nitrogen, 60 pounds of phosphate,45 pounds of potash, 2 pounds of calcium, 10 pounds of magnesium, and 8 pounds of sulfur.Table 3 shows the effect of slight, moderate, and severe erosion on organic matter, soil phosphorus level, and plant available water on a silt loam soil in Indiana.
EFFECT OF EROSION ON ORGANIC MATTER,PHOSPHORUS, AND PLANT-AVAILABLE WATER
Erosion level Organic matter Phosphorus Plant-available water lbs/ac

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