Will the World Achieve Food Security in the Face of an Ever More Rapidly Growing Population? If so, How?

Topics: Agriculture, World population, Famine Pages: 8 (2508 words) Published: February 7, 2013
Will the World achieve Food Security in the face of an ever more rapidly growing population? If so, how?

Food security is a concept which basically means that every human would have a sufficient access to basic foods for a healthy diet without having to worry how and where their next meal will appear.

Food shortages often lead to price rises and in this scenario the wealthiest nations and people survive. In some cases food shortages have caused anarchy and even toppled governments. Many nations, even the big agricultural ones still rely on imports of food products. Even though UK falls into this bracket, it imports of 30% of its food and the figure is on the rise. It shows how food shortages are global issues and can not be addressed any other way. The food supply chains we depend on are global, which make everyone vulnerable to the effects that war and diseases have on the supply chains. With the future of food security under scrutiny it is important to note that even currently this has not been achieved globally, many people already die of starvation everyday, and lack of clean water is still a huge issue in some developing parts of the world. With this said and current problems highlighted it is estimated that food demand which is already unfulfilled in some parts of the world will have doubled by 2050.

Food security is undoubtedly a global issue when taking everything into accounts an the roles nations play in global food trade, all import and export and no nations can escape the situation the future holds, in order to combat this cooperation is definitely in order.

One thing which must be considered in this essay is the Worlds human population. The current global human population stands over 7 billion and grows by over 80 million people every year. In fact, the Population Media Center (2012), states that the current rate of population growth is 1.2% per year, which indicates that the current global population will be doubled by 2070.

Along side this growing population we are seeing plenty soil degradation and a huge decline in the amount of arable land worldwide. Much of this is as a result of human development and are consequences of agricultural activities, deforestation, overgrazing and industrialization among other things. The primary causes differ from region to region, just under half of the soil loss in Africa is down to overgrazing, whilst North America has agricultural activities to blame for roughly two thirds of it soil loss. Global figures show that overgrazing and deforestation are the two main causes and are responsible for roughly two thirds of the loss of arable land and soil.

Overgrazing is the main cause of land degradation in the whole world; it results in the destruction of vegetation as well as the erosion of soil. Overgrazing is the practice of grazing too many livestock for too long a time on land which is unable to recover. Climate change however can also contribute to overgrazing and is becoming more of an issue.

Deforestation is the second largest cause of land and soil loss. Although around a third of the worlds land is forest, a size of forest land equivalent to that of a small country such as Panama is cleared every year. At this current rate there will be no forest left in one hundred years time. Deforestation happens for many reasons, not all of which are intentional. Logging operations (some of which are illegal) are intentional and are carried out to provide the worlds wood products. In transporting the wood and reaching more remote forest areas roads are built which in turn also adds to the deforestation. Some causes of deforestation are or can be natural such as wildfires. Deforestation as well as affecting millions of species of plants and animals by destroying their habitats it also drives climate change. Trees also help with the continuation of the water cycle by returning water vapor back into the atmosphere a role which prevents forests becoming...
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