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Write a 2000-3000 essay on agricultural exploitation and human effects on the environment.

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Introduction

Write a 2000-3000 essay on agricultural exploitation and human effects on the environment. Show how human activities have led to instabilities in population. Examples of use: deforestation, over-fishing, pest control, fertilisers. Humans rely on earth's resources for a high quality of life. As the population surge continues, more food has to be produced to meet the high demands of people. However in relying on more and more resources, the population have forgotten to stop and think about the environment. The growth in human population has caused: * More waste is being produced. * More pollution is being caused. * Non-renewable energy resources, such as coal, oil and natural gas, are being used up rapidly. * Raw materials are being used up rapidly. Agricultural production has been rising over the last few decades. Production has been rising due to an increase in the development of various crops and animals, and more intensive methods of farming. New varieties if crops and farm animals have been developed by artificial selection and genetic engineering. Crops can be genetically engineered to be resistant to pests. Many foods now contain genetically modified organisms. Some humans think that these will help food production and maintain high standards of living for the population. However, there are people that believe that we have the ability to produce adequate food without genetically modified organisms. They believe that the genetically modified organisms should be researched into for long term effects on health and environment. Agriculture is becoming more and more mechanised and the conditions can be controlled much more than before. ...read more.

Middle

Advantages of chemical control: * Pests are destroyed quickly and fairly cheaply * Chemicals can be applied on a small level * Doesn't need a high level of skill * Very effective means of control Disadvantages of control: * Chemicals aren't specific and can damage non target insects. With the removal of insect predators, there may be a resurgence in the pest * Pesticides contain poisonous chemicals which could enter into food chains likely to then kill birds, fish or mammals. * Pests could become resistant to pesticides. * Chemical residue could harm humans Chlorinated organic chemicals such as DDT were constant and remained in the environment for long periods, which is not what is required of a modern pesticide. However DDT was over used and this led to resistance from many species of insects. The suitable insecticide is an effective pesticide at low quantities and kills harmful insects. Another key point is that it should have no environmental effects. Researcehrs are constantly making progress on developing on new compounds. In the latest generation of insecticides, the pyrethroid has been developed from the flower of the plant named Pyrethrum. However, the effect of the natural pyrethrum was found to be short term as it was quickly broken down by sunlight. Biochemists then used the natural pyrethrum as a beginning point to develop a much safer, stable compound, suitable for insect control in field crops. Farmers should spray their crops in early morning or late evening to avoid harming passing by bees and ladybirds. ...read more.

Conclusion

Agricultural is way of combating deforestation. Possible solutions to problems of deforestation: * Managed forests involving the sustainable replanting and regeneration. * Providing protected areas to preserve species. There have been dramatic increases in the intensity and efficiency of commercial methods. This has meant that over-fishing is happening in many areas of the world. Fish are a renewable source. Over-fishing results in a depletion of younger fish, so that the breeding stock can't maintain previous population levels. If the rate at which they are removed exceeds that at which they have been produced, their supply is disappearing. Fishing isn't examined for possible negative issues. In a fish farm, fish are replaced by artificial breeding. However in the ocean, fish are taken out of the sea from humans with no aim to replace them by breeding. Over fishing often causes both a fall in the number of fish and a change in population structure: young smaller fish may become increasingly common as fishing fleets try to maintain the size of the fish they catch. Catching large numbers of small fish before they spawn can seriously reduce their ability of their species to reproduce. This could lead to a terrible fall in the local population of smaller fish. However fishing is likely to halt due to economic reasons, fishing is likely to stop before it can cause extinction. International agreements have been gained on control like: * Enforcing exclusion zones * Imposing quotas * Restricting the mesh size of nets - bigger nets may allow juvenile fish to escape and reproduce. * Having closed seasons for fishing ...read more.

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