016 – Agriculture

In this video Paul Andersen describes the pros and cons of industrial agriculture including: monocropping, irrigation, and the use of pesticides, fertilizers, and GMOs.

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All of the images are licensed under creative commons and public domain licensing:
AnnaJB. This Is an Image of Food from Rwanda, November 27, 2014. Own work.
Beebe, Sam. English: Crop Circles along the Columbia, Washington, USA, June 23, 2008. Flickr: Crop circles along the Columbia.
Betts, Lynn. English: View of Nitrogen Fertilizer Being Applied to Growing Corn, 1999. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service. Photo no. NRCSIA99241.
———. English: View of Runoff, 1999. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service.
Clubs, Thirteen Of. Français : Station de Stockage D’ammoniac Anhydre Pour Engrais Aux États-Unis, May 7, 2007.
“Fertilizer.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, October 5, 2015.
File:ClaySumerianSickle.jpg, n.d.
Galloway, Ewing. English: Plowing an Alfalfa Field by Tractor, US, before 1921. 300 ppi scan of Collier’s New Encyclopedia, Volume 1 (1921), opposite page 58, panel H.
“Golden Rice.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, October 1, 2015.
“Irrigation.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, September 1, 2015.
Kollmann, Dan. English: Combine in Wheat Field, August 30, 2012. Own work.
lamiot, F. English: Eutrophication, July 2005. Own work.
Martin-rnr. Deutsch: Bioakkumulation, [object HTMLTableCellElement]. Own work.
O’Rear, USDA Photo by: Charles. English: Spraying Pesticide in California, [object HTMLTableCellElement]. – Image Number:95c2841 CD0623-027.
Pollinator. English: Integrated Pest Management –, February 15, 2004.
Self. Diagram Showing Development of Pesticide Resistance in Insects, February 25, 2008. Own work.
Sennedjem, Deutsch: Maler der Grabkammer des SennudemEnglish: Painter of the burial chamber of. Deutsch: Grabkammer Des Sennudem, Szene: Pflügender Bauer. Deutsch: Wandbild English: Mural. Deutsch: Grab des Sennudem. Accessed October 12, 2015.
Service, Lynn Betts, USDA Natural Resources Conservation. English: Terraces, photo 1999.
Service, Photo by Lynn Betts, USDA Natural Resources Conservation. Ephemeral Gully Erosion, October 4, 2011. USDA NRCS Photo Gallery: NRCSIA99145.tif.
Service, Photo by Tim McCabe, USDA Natural Resources Conservation. Crop Consultant Scouts, October 4, 2011. USDA NRCS Photo Gallery: NRCSIA99285.tif.
Steinert, Eric. Larva of Chrysoperla Carnea with Prey, June 19, 2004. from, uploaded by kulac.

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32 bình luận trong “Agriculture

  1. horticulture produce 10 time more nutrients than corn or wheat for the same surface area. here is the solution , changing diet and developing Permaculture.

  2. Some people whine about everything. This video was helpful but not all encompassing. There are so many variables its impossible to make a general rule. So lets not make one, lets do what we can when we can and not condemn anyone thing.

  3. I can't see that the hunger issue is caused by lack of food when 30-40% is wasted. Looking in the USA alone, all the poor could be fed and even made fat on the food we throw away. That sounds more like a lack of compassion than a lack of food…

  4. Thank you Paul for all the well organized videos you create. You are indeed a master educator. Just a couple of questions: 1. I did not hear you mention that Europe does in fact import genetically engineered crops and approved the cultivation of two GE crops ( did I miss that in the video? 2. Would "intercropping" be the same thing as cover crops or different and same principle? 3. When you refer to monocropping, do you really mean the "lack of crop rotation" or are the two words vastly different in meaning  ( 4. Resistance is inevitable. It's not a matter of if but when. Farmers have and will likely always be in a race to outcompete the evolution of  those pesky insects or weeds. Are you aware of refuge in a bag? I did not hear any mention of the practice in the video ( 5. I heard you mention the use of Bt in GE crops , but I did not  hear you also mention that Bt is used in organic production – ( Have you used University of NE's Animations in your classroom or videos? I have found them to be very helpful if you want to check them out ( and ) 6. I found it interesting that you mentioned GE crops specifically, but did not mention the other methods of modifying crops. One may find it interesting to know that methods such as mutagenesis are acceptable in organic production and do not require regulatory approval ( or even the consequences of traditional plant breeding such as the celery and psoralen levels example ( . 7. Lastly, I would be interested to know why agriculture and  "sustainable agriculture" are pitted as mutually exclusive? It would be my assumption that if you told a farmer they were not "sustainable" they would be very hurt by such a claim. Sustainability is defined differently among different people, but if we could agree that sustainable means producing enough food, fuel and fiber for a growing population in a way that decreases the inputs yet increases the crop outputs or will leave the land/enviro in good if not better shape than it was before- then I would assume that farmer would say well of course that's our goal and sustainability is nothing new to us . It would appear to me that if by saying one method is "sustainable" and one is just agriculture the listener would walk away thinking just regular agriculture is by default unsustainable- but is that true?
    Thanks again for producing these informative clips. I am a big fan of your lectures. Best.

  5. Very good video!

    By the way, golden rice is quite unnecessary. Vitamin A is in regular rice, but in the shells. Commercially the rice shell is removed and with that the Vitamin A. Simply keeping the shell (which is then called brown rice) is solving the problem in the same way.

  6. I love the video! It helps so much since I'm taking an online chemistry course. Do you have a video that covers exchange reactions? I looked through your chemistry videos and I couldn't seem to find one. Any help is appreciated! Thanks in advance Mr. Andersen.

  7. Use more area to grow food instead of driving it to hard. Many urban areas are located in highly productive areas, that's why people moved there. Later the inhabited area stretches far and wide. In Urban areas no land are used for food, it' huge suburban areas and we import food to the area. Even if some process is more labour intensive it's good because it provides work. In places civilians have started to grow food in public parks, gardens and just about anywhere and everyone like it a lot. It's a good mixing of houses and vegetable food.

  8. thats the pefect way to deplete all living soil on earth and make it a vast dessert. thats where we are heading if we dont turn towards ecological agriculture and sustainable natural farmng and permaculture.

  9. The corn situation is not good we are forced to subsidize high fructose corn syrup so that it's infused in our food, keeps soda prices super low when they should be high etc. all the while Obama literally goes gangbusters about his NON GMO garden oh & who did he put in at the FDA I'll give you a hint Monsanto's lead lawyer maybe you will learn to connect the dots some day it will help with M Theory. OC~~~

  10. You really should do some more research before tackling such an issue. Not one of your most informative video's in fact it's way to propagandish I hope you realize this & do further research so far your speaking with blinders on at best think about the ramifications.

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