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How can famines be prevented?

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How can famines be prevented? Famine is a crisis where starvation from too little food results in the sharp increase of distress and death one place. Developing countries whose food production is dependent on rain fed agriculture suffer greatly. Climate related problems such as low rainfall, drought as well as insects and vermin do have a devastating affect on crops and livelihood but there are many other factors at work. To enable the prevention of famines, the causes must be addressed; whether famines will be eradicated from the modern world will take the determination of all people those directly affected and those who are not. Amartya Sen takes the stand that famines are not the result of a country's inability to grow food but from poverty, meaning famine is a product of poverty. For Sen `People are deprived of the freedom to satisfy their hunger, to obtain health care, to have a decent life. In a word, they are robbed of their right to live as human beings`. ...read more.


In the prevention of famine the issue of land tenure must be addressed because of its relationship with poverty. Under the present system, peasants do not have the right to own land this can only cause insecurity and a lack of investment. These lacks of democracy and unaccountability by the government under this feudal land system have left peasants powerless. Government control means that peasants who constitute 85% of the population cannot voice any opinions or oppose policies that are detrimental to them. The distribution of small plots with the growth of the population puts a great strain on subsistence farming making investment pointless. Land ownership will encourage peasants to invest in their land enabling them to use it as a commodity to access credit and loans encouraging much needed foreign investment. Privatization of the land would also encourage cultural integration that could lend to peace, but more worrying is the fact that it would also ask for transparency within the government. The government needs to give democracy a chance in the fight against famine. ...read more.


With little resources it is difficult for governments to keep development on track but for the love of their people and humanity first and foremost transparency is needed. Rural economical growth is the key to preventing famine with short-term policies stabilizing food production for example drought resistant crops and small-scale irrigation programs. Labor-intensive projects that provide employment can be paid in such a way that only attracts the poor. When so many in the international community are lobbying for the cancellation of third world debt allegations of corruption, war and misuse of aid distorts opinions. Early warning systems are essential and contribute to a strategic plan to eradicate hunger. Peasants on the household level who observe climate changes and assess information given by rural travelers are also using `traditional` early warning systems. With the effects of globalization developing countries have difficulty competing on the open markets, exports to generate cash to fund and improve industry and agricultural technology may prove slow. However, food storage on a national level can go some way to alleviating hunger in poor productive areas in order to avoid the onset of famine. www.brad.ac.uk/research/ijas/ijas.htm www.unitedethopia.org/commentaries/Sep_dec_2003/TheRootCauseofFamine www.ogaden.com/Drough_war_April_15_03.htm 1 ...read more.

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