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In the last few weeks politicians have been making much noise about constraining agriculture in the name of emissions reduction or climate control or some such nonsense.
We should be celebrating agriculture as we have reached (or at least are very close to) for the first time in human history the point that no one on the planet needs to starve to death due to a lack of food. Humans have sought that goal for millennia. It has been the stated goal of beauty pageant contestants for decades. Yet now that we have achieved (or at least are close to achieving) that goal, politicians, leaders, our elite, and others NOW want to put limits on the mechanisms that got us here?
I recognize that there remain some transportation and distribution challenges to getting all the food the world’s farmers produce to all the people who need it, but my unscientific observation is that overall we are growing enough food to feed the entire world population. When I was growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, the widespread concern was that the world’s population was growing faster than the world’s food production. But, due to improved farming efficiencies mostly in the United States and in Europe, those trends have switched. American and European farmers have solved world hunger! Despite setbacks such as the former Rhodesia (breadbasket of Africa) becoming Zimbabwe (the basket case of Africa), farmers have stepped up their game. We should be celebrating.
In the last couple of years, I have been fascinated with some of the (mostly United States) farming channels on YouTube. The efficiencies those farmers seek, and how much they produce using relatively few people is impressive. But that productivity takes capital expenditures (million dollar pieces of farm equipment!), specialty seeds and fertilizers (50 lb. bags of seed for $7,000!), and fuel (mostly diesel and natural gas) (125 gallons of diesel ($500 – 600!) for a day or two’s work from many tractors and other pieces of equipment!). Yet because of that diesel fuel usage, our “betters” do not want to celebrate. They want to constrain the very mechanism that has been so successful at feeding the world. This makes no sense.
Here we have achieved the goal of producing enough food in the world that no one need go hungry (or at least are coming very close). Yet our politicians and other elites want to get in the way. No!
Let’s celebrate that world hunger is or will soon be a thing of the past.Published in