Pesticides and the environment


As our population grows and more and more land is taken over for residential and commercial usage the farms are disappearing. There is less land to farm to produce the food and feed need to sustain the growing population. As a result, we had to find ways increase the yield on lest land. Insect pests and plant disease destroy crops at an alarming rather, thus decreasing viable yield on the farms. Thus can the development of pesticides became a big business, allow more of the crops to reach maturity, and not be destroyed by pests.

When pesticides first appear everyone was excited because crop yield increased and food prices decreased.  No one had taken a real look at the long-term effects on the environment.  In 1962 Rachel Carson published a book called Silent Spring, which documents the effects of the indiscriminate use of pesticides on the environment. This book opened the eyes of scientists and environmentalist and I believe was a big factor in starting the movement toward protecting our environment.  This book started a movement in this country that led to the development of the EPA in 1970.

As a result, agricultural scientists working with entomologist and economists have developed Integrated Pest Management farming techniques that combine natural methods with limited pesticides to increase crop yield and at the same time protect the environment.

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James Frazee

Author, The Mosquito Bites

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