Honey, we have 2 billion more for dinner: Agriculture, hunger, and global justice

November 15, 6:30-8:30pm; buffet opens at 6:15pm.
Rose Library, 3rd Floor Flex Space

See below for a recording of the event: Presenters begin just after the 4 minute mark, small group discussion at the 39 minute mark.

 

Registration is closed.

“Global human population is projected to increase from 7 billion today to more than 9 billion by 2050. To sufficiently feed these people, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN projects that food availability will need to increase by at least 70 percent.” (http://www.worldresourcesreport.org/)

Agricultural ecosystems have become incredibly good at producing food, but these increased yields have environmental costs that cannot be ignored. Agriculture already uses 38% of all land area, 85% of all water consumption, and over one fourth of the Earth’s total primary productivity each year. “The global environmental impact of agriculture on natural ecosystems may be as serious a problem as global climate change.” (Tilman, 1999, PNAS 96:5995). Can the planet feed 9 billion people without ravaging the remaining natural ecosystems? Should it?

Speakers:
Carole Nash, Assistant Professor, Department of Integrated Science and Technology
Mary Handley, Associate Professor, Department of Integrated Science and Technology

Speaker Bios:
Carole Nash, Assistant Professor, Department of Integrated Science and Technology, has taught at JMU for 23 years. She has over 30 years of experience in the archaeology of the Middle Atlantic region and is a specialist in the archaeology of the Appalachians. Her main interests are long-term environmental adaptations of small-scale societies that transitioned from hunting and gathering to a settled, agricultural way of life.

Mary Handley, Associate Professor, Department of Integrated Science and Technology, has been at JMU for 14 years. She has experience in horticulture, plant pathology, plant breeding, and sustainable agriculture and has lived, gardened, and taught in the Northeast, Southeast, Mid-Atlantic, Great Plains and California’s Central Valley.

Sources:
National Geographic’s 2011 Year-Long series on ‘The 7 Billion’:  http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/7-billion

United Nations’ World Food Programme Must Reads:  http://www.wfp.org/stories/feeding-7-billion-people-7-must-reads

D. Tilman, 1999, Global environmental impacts of agricultural expansion: The need for sustainable and efficient practices, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 96: 5995-6000.

PlJ. Ericksen, Ingram, S.I., and D.M. Liverman, 2009, Food security and global environmental change: emerging challenges, Environmental Science and Policy 12: 373-377.