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What is land degradation?

Land degradation is a process in which the value of the biophysical

environment is affected by a combination of human-induced processes
acting upon the land. It is viewed as any change or disturbance to
the land perceived to be deleterious or undesirable.

This is considered to be an important topic of the 21st century due to the

implications land degradation has upon agronomic productivity, the
environment, and its effects on food security. It is estimated that up to 40%
of the world's agricultural land is seriously degraded.

Land degradation means:

1) loss of natural fertility of soil because of loss of nutrients.

2) less vegetation cover.

3) changes in the characteristic of soil.

4) pollution of water resources from the contamination of soil through which

water sweeps into ground or runoff to the water bodies.

5) changes in climatic conditions because of unbalance created in

Land degradation
Causes of land degradation
 Deforestation
 Soil erosion by wind or water
 Mining
 Industrialization
 Unsustainable agricultural practices
 Urban expansion
 Overgrazing
 Dumping of non-biodegradable trash, such as plastic
 Quarrying of stone,sand,ore,and minerals
 Loss of soil carbon

Deforestation is the full of large scale removal of a forest,or area of

tress,in order to clear land for human development.

Deforestation is the direct or indirect human-induced conversion of

forested land to non-forested land

 Effects of Deforestation
Deforestation can have a negative impact on the environment.
The most dramatic impact is a loss of habitat for millions of
species. Eighty percent of Earth’s land animals and plants live
in forests, and many cannot survive the deforestation that
destroys their homes.

Deforestation also drives climate change. Forest soils are

moist, but without protection from sun-blocking tree cover,
they quickly dry out. Trees also help perpetuate the water
cycle by returning water vapor to the atmosphere. Without
trees to fill these roles, many former forest lands can quickly
become barren deserts.

Removing trees deprives the forest of portions of its canopy, which blocks
the sun’s rays during the day, and holds in heat at night. This disruption
leads to more extreme temperature swings that can be harmful to plants
and animals.

Trees also play a critical role in absorbing the greenhouse gases that fuel
global warming. Fewer forests mean larger amounts of greenhouse gases
entering the atmosphere—and increased speed and severity of global

The most feasible solution to deforestation is to carefully manage forest

resources by eliminating clear-cutting to make sure forest environments
remain intact. The cutting that does occur should be balanced by planting
young trees to replace older trees felled. The number of new tree
plantations is growing each year, but their total still equals a tiny fraction
of the Earth’s forested land.

How to control deforestation

1. Begin by hugging a tree. It’s that easy. This is the quickest way to
appreciate the important part it plays in your life.

2. And start planting trees. That’s the sum of the domestic campaign so far.
Soon, all the neighbors will be carbon copying each other.

3. Also stop printing and go paperless whether at home or at work, many of

us still have that nasty, lazy habit of not learning to utilize computer files
and folders properly. So instead, we print. And, you know what; many of us
do this when we think others are not looking. So, there you go. You know
it’s wrong.
4. When shopping, move towards buying recycled products mainly. Most
recycled items do not derive from areas that have been cleared of natural
and rainforests.

5. When at home, recycle as much as possible. By extension, you are

continuing with your proactive exercise in diverting the demand for clearing

6. To get these things right, your shopping for recycled and sustainable
products and your meat products, vigorously check the labels of each item
you pick up. A much safer alternative and time-saving effort entails simply
buying organic products instead. But avoid the multinationals that have
pretentiously jumped onto the organic bandwagon, mainly to drive sales

Soil erosion by wind or water

Erosion is the term given to soil loss due to the mobilization of topsoil
by the forces of water and wind.wind and water move the eroded
particles to some other location, where is it deposited as
sediment.soil erosion is a natural process that removes soil from top.
 Effects of soil erosion by wind and water
 Wind erosion damages crops through sandblasting of young
seedlings or transplants, burial of plants or seed, and
exposure of seed. Crops are ruined, resulting in costly delays
and making reseeding necessary. Plants damaged by
sandblasting are vulnerable to the entry of disease with a
resulting decrease in yield, loss of quality and market value.
Also, wind erosion can create adverse operating conditions,
preventing timely field activities.

 Soil drifting is a fertility-depleting process that can lead to

poor crop growth and yield reductions in areas of fields
where wind erosion is a recurring problem. Continual drifting
of an area gradually causes a textural change in the soil.
Loss of fine sand, silt, clay and organic particles from sandy
soils serves to lower the moisture-holding capacity of the soil.
This increases the top of the soil and compounds the

 The removal of wind-blown soils from fence rows,

constructed drainage channels and roads, and from around
buildings is a costly process. Also, soil nutrients and surface-
applied chemicals can be carried along with the soil particles,
contributing to off-site impacts. In addition, blowing dust can
affect human health and create public safety hazards.
Water erosion
On- site

The implications of soil erosion by water extend beyond the removal

of valuable topsoil. Crop emergence, growth and yield are directly
affected by the loss of natural nutrients and applied fertilizers. Seeds
and plants can be disturbed or completely removed by the erosion.
Organic matter from the soil, residues and any applied manure is
relatively lightweight and can be readily transported off the field,
particularly during spring thaw conditions. Pesticides may also be
carried off the site with the eroded soil.

Soil quality, structure, stability and texture can be affected by the

loss of soil. The breakdown of aggregates and the removal of
smaller particles or entire layers of soil or organic matter can
weaken the structure and even change the texture. Textural
changes can in turn affect the water-holding capacity of the soil,
making it more susceptible to extreme conditions such as drought.


The off-site impacts of soil erosion by water are not always as apparent
as the on-site effects. Eroded soil, deposited down slope, inhibits or
delays the emergence of seeds, buries small seedlings and
necessitates replanting in the affected areas. Also, sediment can
accumulate on down-slope properties and contribute to road damage.

Sediment that reaches streams or watercourses can accelerate bank

erosion, obstruct stream and drainage channels, fill in reservoirs,
damage fish habitat and degrade downstream water quality. Pesticides
and fertilizers, frequently transported along with the eroding soil,
contaminate or pollute downstream water sources, wetlands and lakes.
Because of the potential seriousness of some of the off-site impacts, the
control of "non-point" pollution from agricultural land is an important
How to control soil erosion

 Contour farming
Contour farming may be defined as plough seeding, cultivating and
harvesting across the slope, rather than with it. Thomas Jefferson, who
wrote in 1813: “we now plough horizontally, following the curvature of
the hills every furrow thus acts as a reservoir to retain waters scarcely
an ounce of soil is now carried off.

 Strip cropping
On land with a decided slope, planting crops on contour strips will
be an effective erosion determent. For effective control the width
of the contour strip should vary inversely with the length of the
slope. Strip cropping should be combined with crop rotation, so
that a strip planted to a soil depleting, erosion-facilitating corn crop
one year will be sown to a soil enriching and protecting strip of
legumes the next.

 Terracing
The practice of terracing has been common in ancient China. The
flat, step-like bench terraces are now not useful. The modern
terrace is an embankment of earth constructed across a slope in
such a way as to control water run-off and minimize erosion. To
be effective, terrace must check water flow before it attains
sufficient velocity to loosen and transport soil.

 Gully reclamation

Gullies are danger signals that indicate land is eroding rapidly and may
become a wasteland as in the case of vast areas along the rivers
Chambal and Yamuna. If a gully is small it may be ploughed in and
then seeded to quick-growing crops like barley, maize, jowar, wheat in
order to check erosion.

In case of severe gullying, small check dams of manure and straw

constructed at 5metre intervals may be effective, because silt will
collect behind the dams and gradually fill in the channel. Earthen, stone
and even concrete dams may be built at intervals along the gully. Once
dams have been constructed and water run-off has been restrained,
soil may be stabilize

 Shelter belts
These are the ‘green belts’ of trees which help to break the force of
strong winds and thus, prevent or cut to a minimum the blowing away
of the loose top-soil. In areas where wind erosion is more, rows of trees
may be helpful to check the flow of winds. Apart from this, these trees
will also add color to the landscape and help to control the desert

Soil blowing away can also be controlled if local shrubs and small trees
are planted in a systematic way. Even useful trees can be planted and
harvested after a regular interval of two to three years.

Other measures of soil conservation are:

(1) Expansion of vegetative cover and protective afforestation,

(2) controlled grazing,

(3) Flood control,

(4) Prohibition of shifting cultivation,

(v) Proper land utilization,

(6) Maintenance of soil fertility,

(7) Land reforms, reclamation of wasteland,

(8) Establishment of soil research institute and training of soil scientists,


(9) Effective agencies for soil management.


The environmental impact of mining includes erosion, formation

of sinkholes, loss of biodiversity, and contamination of soil, ground
water and surface water by chemicals from mining processes.
Besides creating environmental damage, the contamination resulting
from leakage of chemicals also affects the health of the local
population. Mining companies in some countries are required to
follow environmental and rehabilitation codes, ensuring the area
mined is returned close to its original state. Some mining methods
may have significant environmental and public health effects.

 Effects of mining
Mining activities require the clearing of large areas of land. The
chemicals used in the mining process often escape into the
environment causing large-scale pollution. Let us consider the
question "how does mining affect the environment" in this article.
Mining refers to the process of extracting metals and minerals from
the earth. Gold, silver, diamond, iron, coal and uranium are just a few
of the vast array of metals and minerals that are obtained by this
process. In fact, mining is the source of all the substances that cannot
be obtained by industrial processes or through agriculture.

Mining reaps huge profits for the companies that own them and
provides employment to a large number of people. It is also a huge
source of revenue for the government. Despite its economic
importance, the question that how does mining affect the environment
is a pressing environmental issue. Effects of Mining on Environment
Rainforests are the biggest source of oxygen, wood and medicines
on this earth. Amazon rainforest is known for alluvial gold deposits.
Gold is found both in river channels and at the banks of the river after
floods (floodplains). Hydraulic mining techniques are used for mining
gold. The method involves blasting at the banks of the river. This has
caused irreversible damage to trees, birds and animals. While
separating the sediment and mercury from the gold-yielding gravel
deposits, small-scale miners who are less equipped than industrial
miners, may ignore release of some mercury into the river.
This mercury enters the food chain through aquatic animals and their
predators. Highly poisonous compound "cyanide" is also used to
separate gold from sediment and rock. In spite of all precautionary
measures, it sometimes escapes into the surrounding environment.
Those who eat fish are at greater risk of ingesting such toxin as the
professional manufacturer of complete sets of mining machinery,
such as cone crusher, Henan is always doing the best in products
and service. Effect on Land Deforestation: Mining requires large
areas of land to be cleared so that the earth could be dug into by the
miners. For this reason, large-scale deforestation is required to be
carried out in the areas where mining has to be done. Besides
clearing the mining area, vegetation in the adjoining areas also needs
to be cut in order to construct roads and residential facilities for the
mine workers. The human population brings along with it other
activities that harm the environment. For example, various activities
at coal mines release dust and gas into the air. Thus, mining is one of
the major causes of deforestation and pollution.

Mining can have adverse effects on surrounding surface and groundwater if

protective measures are not taken. The result can be unnaturally high
concentrations of some chemicals, such as arsenic, sulfuric acid,
and mercury over a significant area of surface or sub surface Runoff of
mere soil or rock debris -although non-toxic- also devastates the
surrounding vegetation. The dumping of the runoff in surface waters or in
forests is the worst option here. Submarine tailings disposal is regarded as
a better option (if the soil is pumped to a great depth) Mere land storage
and refilling of the mine after it has been depleted is even better, if no
forests need to be cleared for the storage of the debris. There is potential
for massive contamination of the area surrounding mines due to the various
chemicals used in the mining process as well as the potentially damaging
compounds and metals removed from the ground with the ore. Large
amounts of water produced from mine drainage, mine cooling, aqueous
extraction and other mining processes increases the potential for these
chemicals to contaminate ground and surface water. In well-regulated
mines, hydrologists and geologists take careful measurements of water and
soil to exclude any type of water contamination that could be caused by the
mine's operations. The reducing or eliminating of environmental
degradation is enforced in modern American mining by federal and state
law, by restricting operators to meet standards for protecting surface and
ground water from contamination. This is best done through the use of non-
toxic extraction processes as bioleaching. If the project site becomes
nonetheless polluted, mitigation techniques such as acid mine
drainage (AMD) need to be performed.
The five principal technologies used to monitor and control water flow at
mine sites are diversion systems, containment ponds, groundwater
systems, subsurface drainage systems, and subsurface barriers. In the
case of AMD, contaminated water is generally pumped to a treatment
facility that neutralizes the contaminants.
A 2006 review of environmental impact statements found that "water quality
predictions made after considering the effects of mitigations largely
underestimated actual impacts to groundwater, seeps, and surface water"
 Effects on biodiversity
The implantation of a mine is a major habitat modification, and smaller
perturbations occur on a larger scale than exploitation site, mine-waste
residuals contamination of the environment for example. Adverse effects
can be observed long after the end of the mine activity Destruction or
drastic modification of the original site and anthropogenic substances
release can have major impact on biodiversity in the area. Destruction of
the habitat is the main component of biodiversity losses, but direct
poisoning caused by mine-extracted material and indirect poisoning
through food and water, can also affect animals, vegetables and
microorganisms. Habitat modification such as pH and temperature
modification disturb communities in the area. Endemic species are
especially sensitive, since they need very specific environmental
conditions. Destruction or slight modification of their habitat puts them at
the risk of extinction. Habitats can be damaged when there is not enough
terrestrial as well by non-chemicals products, such as large rocks from the
mines that are discarded in the surrounding landscape with no concern for
impacts on natural habitat Concentrations of heavy metals are known to
decrease with distance from the mine and effects on biodiversity follow the
same pattern. Impacts can vary greatly depending on mobility
and bioavailability of the contaminant less-mobile molecules will stay inert
in the environment while highly mobile molecules will easily move into
another compartment or be taken up by organisms. For
example, speciation of metals in sediments could modify their
bioavailability, and thus their toxicity for aquatic organisms.

Humans are also affected by mining. There are many diseases that can
come from the pollutants that are released into the air and water during the
mining process. For example, during smelting operations enormous
quantity of air pollutants, such as the suspended particulate matter, SO,
arsenic particles and cadmium, are emitted. Metals are usually emitted into
the air as particulates.
There are also many occupational health hazards. Most of the miners
suffer from various respiratory and skin diseases. Miners working in
different types of mines suffer from asbestosis, silicosis, or black lung
disease Humans are also affected by the occurrence of landslides and
How to control mining

1) Closing illegal and unregulated mines- In context with

enforcing regulations and maintaining steadfast legislation regarding a
mine’s behavior and processes, the strict and swift closing of illegal or
unregulated mining activity will set an environmental precedent within the

For example, before 2010, most mines in China were completely

unregulated when it came to the environment and the shortcomings it was
bringing to surrounding Chinese areas. After years of lax regulation and
undisciplined treatment of illegal, unpermitted mines, China's government
responded to a wave of public protest and partly in its own self-interest
enacted new policy measures for greener mining. These were codified in
the Rare Earth Industrial Development Policy. The following regulations are
the most important out of those now in practice, and they are being
enforced to discourage illegal and environmentally careless mining. These
measures are not yet all fully implemented in China, but the legal
productivity and environmental impact are set to increase by two-fold
thanks to the closure of the illegal activity, and the cultivation of the existing
legal mines

2) Scrap mining and recycling- On a global scale, mining

corporations around the world are discovering efficient ways to capitalize
fully on materials in order to provide the goods and services people want
using much less wood, metal, stone, plastic and other materials. By
reducing the amount of wasteful use on a public and private level, and by
steering production towards the sole use of durable goods that can be
easily reusable, re-manufactured, or recycled, the mining industry can
begin to reduce its impact on an international scale.

This creative trend of scrap mining, or utilizing ever-reusable resource for

other mining initiatives, stems from the recognition of the environmental
costs of excessive materials use. Mining exacts a severe and sometimes
irreversible toll on public health, water and air quality, fish and wildlife
habitat, and community interests. “Recognizing that "business-as-usual"
practices are unsustainable, some nations, international organizations, and
environmental groups are calling for major reductions in materials use-often
by as much as 90 percent,” reports the Canary Institute in Canada.

3) Better legislation and regulations- Standard legislation

concerning the efficiency of mining is a long way off from being the most
productive and most strict government mandates that exists today.
Obviously these regulations differ between nations, with some countries
more advanced in terms of their legislation than others, however the need
for improvement is always there in this industry, which inevitably causes
some environmental damage.

In Canada for example, mines like the Island Copper Mine on Vancouver
Island stands as a highly regulated mine site that operated from 1971 until
1995 when it was closed for resource depletion. It was due to the regulation
and control of the government that a detailed mine closure plan was
developed to comfortably close the mine in order to protect the few
resources which remained, and the B.C. enacted the contaminated sites
regulation process which was awarded the Certificate of Conditional
Compliance. It is this kind of federal regulation that will not only protect
environmental and public health, but that will improve the lifespan of the
mining industry.

4) Improving environmental performance- Mining impacts

the environment in unnatural ways, which not only disrupts its natural
decaying process, but also does more damage long-term than natural
erosion processes. With exorbitant numbers of materials excavated and
used daily, it is important to see that this destruction is actually going
towards productive use.

By systematically examining environmental impacts and adopting

measures to mitigate these impacts, it is possible to make mining less
destructive of the environment. Incremental efficiency gains will not do the
job. Instead, an imaginative remaking of the industrial world-one that aligns
economies with the natural environment that supports them is the
sustainable way forward. Recycling has a number of advantages. Canada’s
offices like The Pembina Institute, the Natural Step and The National Office
of Pollution Prevention are all behind these huge pushes towards not only
monitoring mining manufacturing performance, but environmental
performance as well.
5) Accurate tallying of toxic mining waste- Another problem
with the whole sustainable mining debate has to do with secrecy in
reporting toxic mining waste. Mining companies have not been accurately
reporting the amounts being dumped into the environment and in doing so,
have kept the public in the dark. Most notably this has been occurring with
the Canadian people as of late, with a huge public backlash being the
center of much of the mining industry controversy being targeted on
accurate waste tallying lately. While sustainable mining looks good on
paper and seems easy enough to follow provincial or federal guidelines, the
industry has a way to go before it can be considered even remotely green.

6) Improving the efficiency of manufacturing

processes- By targeting the goal of closely monitoring the standard
mining supply chain, mining industry giants will be forced to confront the
ways in which a company can improve its efficiency by seeing exactly
where the organization is lacking in terms of sustainability and green
mining initiatives. This supervision of the manufacturing process is
essential in order to develop new ways of thinking, new metrics, and new
management/supervisory tools that will help cushion the transition into
more efficient and less environmentally-harmful patterns of resource use in
modern societies.

Organizations like The World Resources Institute are currently conducting

research on the most frequently used resources and materials, in order to
better understand how the industry can conserve its non-renewable
materials. The WRI has been working towards developing a database, and
can now indicate the flow of materials through industrial economies.
Material flows analyses will track the physical flows of natural resources
through extraction, production, fabrication, use and recycling, and final
disposal, accounting for both the gains and losses occurring throughout the
supply chain.

Development of industries for the economic growth of the country

leads to excessive deforestation and utilization of land in such way
that it has lost its natural up gradation quality.
The Industrial Revolution created an increase in employment
opportunities. As factories became more prolific, managers and
employees were required to operate them; this had a flow-on effect of
new and innovative products emerging. Increased innovation led to
higher levels of motivation and education that resulted in several
ground-breaking inventions that are still used today such as the
telephone, X-ray, light bulb, calculator and anesthesia. The Industrial
Revolution improved people’s lives. Due to Industrial Revolution
advancements, there were improvements in nutrition, health care and
Several major pitfalls developed as the Industrial Revolution
progressed. There was a reduction in agriculture as people were
abandoning their farms to work in city factories where they could earn
a higher income. This led to a shortage a food produced on farms.
Increased pollution was a pitfall of the Industrial Revolution. Before
the sharp increase in factory numbers, there was a limited amount of
pollution generated in the world as production was predominantly
manual. The Industrial Revolution provided an incentive to increase
profits, and as a result, working conditions in factories deteriorated.
Long hours, inadequate remuneration and minimal breaks became
the norm. This subsequently led to health issues for many factory
workers. Labor movements in the United States developed
momentum from the late 19th century in response to poor working
conditions that developed during the Industrial Revolution.
 Effects of industrialization

Since the ages of Industrial and technological revolutions,

economic growth has been regarded as the major fundamental
of the world’s growth. Industrial growth has started to affect the
entire environment with its severe downside problem .the
formation of massive pollution making industries are the result
of the constant need and greed of the human being. These
industries include transportation and manufacturing, which are
exhausting the earth’s resources, but also causing tremendous
stress on the environment and the ecological system. The
productiveness of industries generally depends on the natural
resources available. The impact of industrialization on the
environment has led the way with certain positive and large
negative outcomes, with progressive rates and inventions.
There are quite a number of resourceful natural elements like,
water, air, soil and fisheries, which are considered to be
positive and fertile assets. The pollution of water, soil and air,
are defined as the by-product of economic development in
industry and city life. Global warming and greenhouse effects
are the result, which is a massive impact of industrialization on
the environment. The degradation of the entire environment
and ecological system is inclined to become permanent and
tends to cause several negative effects on the economy, by
causing human losses, ill health of the employee at large costs
to governments, manufacturing and society.
Constant air and water pollution are affecting the quality of
human lives with its harmful pollutant the rapid growth of
industries are leaving harmful effects on the human life, by
polluting water and air. The air and water pollution are, thus,
the main problems in the environment the establishment of
more industries increase the major difficulties of degrading the
water and soil.
The impact of industrialization on the environment needs to be emphasized
with more intensity and feeling as the world is quietly but surely facing
destruction from man-made follies. For example, did you know that in three
Pennsylvania river basins, there is a growing population of mutated fish?
Male fish have female parts and vice versa, open sores and unusual
blotches on their bodies and it doesn’t make national news. This is because
extreme animal mutations, tons of dead birds, farm animals, and fishes
have become a common occurrence around the world in the past 5 years.
It’s no longer headlines news because it’s become “commonplace.”
Before you assume that these events are caused by prophetic stories from
way back in history, there is a more logical reason: unhampered or
merciless industrialization.

For example-
China is the most populated country in the world with slightly more than half
of the population is still living in rural areas. In the past couple of decades,
rapid urbanization and industrialization have significantly changed the land
use/land cover (LULC) pattern in rural areas, particularly those around the
big cities in eastern China. Shandong Peninsula, a traditional agriculture
area, also has witnessed rapid urbanization and industrialization. Analysis
of land use/land cover change in this area, specially the change of
agricultural lands, would help us better understand the interaction between
government's policies and farmers’ economic interests.

This paper developed a method to extract single-cropping land, double-

cropping land and other land use/land cover categories for 1978, 1999 and
2006 from seasonal variations in Normalized Vegetation Index (NDVI)
during a crop calendar year. Spatial analysis results indicated significant
changes of arable lands and other land use/land cover categories due to
the urbanization and industrialization. The most possible reason is due to
the continuous adjustment of government's policies and shift of farmer's
economic interests. Results from this study would help government make
wise decisions in the near future to mitigate urban sprawl and industrial
development while maintain enough agricultural production.
How to control industrialization pollution
1) Control at Source: It involves suitable alterations in the choice of raw
materials and process in treatment of exhaust gases before finally
discharged and increasing stock height up to 38metre in order to ensure
proper mixing of the discharged pollutants.

2) Selection of Industry Site: The industrial site should be properly

examined considering the climatic and topographical characteristics before
setting of the industry.

3) Treatment of Industrial Waste: The industrial wastes should be subjected

to proper treatment before their discharge.

4) Plantation: Intensive plantation in the region considerably reduces the

dust, smoke and other pollutants.

5) Stringent Government Action: Government should take stringent action

against industries which discharge higher amount of pollutants into the
environment than the level prescribed by Pollution Control Board.

6) Assessment of the Environmental Impacts: Environmental impact

assessment should be carried out regularly which intends to identify and
evaluate the potential and harmful impacts of the industries on natural eco-

7) Strict Implementation of Environmental Protection Act: Environment

Protection Act should be strictly followed and the destroyer of the
environment should be strictly punished.

Biological Concentration and Bio-Magnification: A

pollutant present in the environment makes its entry into the food chain by
the producers. After the entry, these get accumulated in their cells and
tissues. The primary consumers when feed upon the producers, the
pollutants deposited in the body of the former are transferred into the body
of the primary consumer. In addition, the primary consumer may also
directly absorb some amount of pollutants from the environment.
This leads to an increase in the concentration of the pollutant in the body of
the primary consumer. Again the primary consumer is consumed by a
secondary consumer and the pollutants from the body of the former are
transferred into the body of latter where these get deposited.

Thus, on moving along the food chain, it is seen that concentration of the
pollutants become more in the tissues of the organisms belonging to higher
trophic level than the organisms belonging to lower trophic level. Hence the
residual retention of the pollutants is the richest at the higher trophic level.

Unsustainable agricultural practices

Increased mechanization of agriculture has led to increased yields and

faster production various method techniques and equipment
are now used in agricultural at different scales which are destructive to the
soil and water resources, and gradually decrease the productivity of the

For decades, we’ve produced the bulk of our food through industrial
agriculture—a system dominated by large farms growing the same crops
year after year, using enormous amounts of chemical pesticides and
fertilizers that damage soils, water, air, and climate. This system is not built
to last, because it squanders and degrades the resources that it depends

But a growing number of innovative farmers and scientists are taking a

different path, moving toward a farming system that is more sustainable—
environmentally, economically, and socially. This system has room for
farms of all sizes, producing a diverse range of foods, fibers, and fuels
adapted to local conditions and regional markets. It uses state-of-the-art,
science-based practices that maximize productivity and profit while
minimizing environmental damage.

Some proponents of industrial agriculture claim that its impacts are the
price we must pay to “feed the world.” In fact, a growing body of scientific
evidence has debunked this claim showing that a more sustainable model
can be just as profitable—and can meet our needs for the long haul.

 Effects of Unsustainable agricultural

The sustainable production of food is the first pillar of food
security. In this section we address two fundamental questions:
 What would happen if agricultural production systems shifted
sustainable agriculture?
 Would this mean a new threat to food security, particularly at
the local level, or can current and future populations be fed by
sustainable agriculture?

The Sustainable agriculture programs of IIED has examined the

extent and impact of sustainable agriculture in a selected number
of countries, and used this empirical evidence to estimate
sustainable agriculture’s potential contribution to global food
production. Whilst we were aware that many projects and
programs had improved agricultural yields, these data have never
been collated in one place. This paper represents a first attempt to
analysis the impacts, especially in terms of productivity. The
government and non-government programs and projects included
in this analysis share important common characteristics. They
have: · made use of resource-conserving technologies in
conjunction with group or collective approaches to agricultural
improvement and natural resource management; · put
participatory approaches and farmer center activities at the center
their agenda - hence, these activities are occurring on local
people’s terms, and so are more likely to persist after the projects
and programs have ended; · not used subsidies or food-for-work
to ‘buy’ the participation of local people, or to encourage them to
adopt particular technologies, and thus improvements are unlikely
to fade away or simply disappear at the end of projects or
programs; · supported the active involvement of women as key
producers and facilitators; emphasis ‘adding value’ to agricultural
products through agro-processing, marketing, and other off-farm
activities, thus creating employment and income-generating
opportunities and retaining the surplus in the rural economy. Two
types of transition to sustainable agriculture have been assessed:
from modern or conventional high-external input agriculture (such
as farming in Green Revolution lands or in the industrial countries);
and from traditional, rain agriculture where cereal yields have
largely remained constant over centuries. As these transitions are
recent (within the past ten years), they provide compelling
evidence that similar improvements could occur elsewhere and
that they could be repeated on a larger scale In the 20 countries of
the South (and the total of 63 projects) examined and analysis,
there are some 1.93 million households farming 4.1 million
hectares with sustainable agriculture technologies and practices
(Table 1). The data in Table 1 do not represent a comprehensive
survey of sustainable agriculture in each of the countries. They do
illustrate, however, what has been achieved by specific projects
and what could be replicated elsewhere. Most of these
improvements have occurred in the past ten years (many in the
past two to five years). The assumption is that these are
representative of what is possible on a wider scale. It could be
argued, however, that they are only successful because they have
occurred where there is a combination of the least resistance and
most opportunity, although the sheer diversity of approaches and
contexts represented undermine such an assertion. Moreover,
many of the improvements are occurring in difficult, remote and
resource-poor areas that have commonly been assumed in the
past to be incapable of producing food surpluses.

Some measures to control unsustainable

agricultural practices
1) Rotating crops and embracing diversity. Anting a variety of
crops can have many benefits, including healthier soil and
improved pest control. Crop diversity practices include
intercropping (growing a mix of crops in the same area) and
complex multi-year crop rotations.
2) Planting cover crops. Cover crops, like clover or hairy vetch,
are planted during off-season times when soils might otherwise be
left bare. These crops protect and build soil health by preventing
erosion, replenishing soil nutrients, and keeping weeds in check,
reducing the need for herbicides.

3) Reducing or eliminating tillage. Traditional plowing (tillage)

prepares fields for planting and prevents weed problems,, but can
cause a lot of soil loss. No-till or reduced till methods, which
involve inserting seeds directly into undisturbed soil, can reduce
erosion and improve soil health.

4) Applying integrated pest management (IPM). A range of

methods, including mechanical and biological controls, can be
applied systematically to keep pest populations under control while
minimizing use of chemical pesticides.

5) Integrating livestock and crops. Industrial agriculture tends to

keep plant and animal production separate, with animals living far
from the areas where their feed is produced, and crops growing far
away from abundant manure fertilizers. A growing body of
evidence shows that a smart integration of crop and animal
production can be a recipe for more efficient, profitable farms.

6) Adopting agroforestry practices. By mixing trees or shrubs into

their operations, farmers can provide shade and shelter to protect
plants, animals, and water resources, while also potentially
offering additional income.

7) Managing whole systems and landscapes. Unsustainable farms

treat uncultivated or less intensively cultivated areas, such as
riparian buffers or prairie strips, as integral to the farm—valued for
their role in controlling erosion, reducing nutrient runoff, and
supporting pollinators and other biodiversity.

A key theme connecting many of these practices is diversification.

“Keep it simple” is good advice in many situations, but when it
comes to agriculture, the most sustainable and productive systems
are more diverse and complex—like nature itself.
Urban expansion

Urban growth, road construction, mining and industry are

major factors in land degradation in different regions.
Valuable agricultural land is often lost.

 Effects of urban expansion

1) Increase in Public Expenditure: They can actually play a
part in the increases of public costs, because these changes
in infrastructures and building must actually be paid for by
someone- and it is usually the tax payer money that pays for

2) Increased Traffic: populations will begin to use their cars

more often, which means that there is more traffic on the
road, and there is also more air Pollution and more auto
accident that you have to worry with

3) Health Issues: When people use their vehicles, even to

go to a very short distance, people are going to be more
overweight and are also going to have to deal with ailments
such as high blood pressure and other diseases that come
about with obesity.

4) Environmental Issues: Sprawls can also cause

certain environmental issues that you may want to be aware
of. In fact, when you think about going out to develop these
lands you will have to worry about the wildlife that lives in
these lands. You will be displacing them, and it can really
cause a ripple in the environment.

5) Impact on Social Lives: When people move further out,

they also have an impact on their social lives. They don’t
have neighbors that live as close, which means that they
won’t really stay as social as they should. This isn’t always
the case, but it is something that should be taken note of.

As you can see, urban sprawl is something that will continue

to occur as long as we live here on earth. It isn’t something
that is going to change, but over time the more rural areas
are going to become more populated because of
development and change. This can be considered a good
thing at times, but others view it as a bad thing. You also
have to consider the fact that it will actually play a part in
having to cut down more trees and tear up the environment,
and in this aspect it is not a good thing.

On a positive note, it may lead to less overcrowding- but it

won’t happen overnight. It clear that urban sprawl is
something that people will consider to a good thing or a bad
thing, depending on their own belief systems. You may find
it to be something that is ideal, while others may want to
steer clear of it. It is the inevitable, that’s for sure, but that
doesn’t mean that it has to be rushed into, and it should
happen naturally

 Possible remedy for the urban

expansion issues and problems
The most effectual way to resolve issues of urbanization is to
make the economy of village and small scale fully viable.
Economies must be revitalized if government undertakes
huge rural development program. It is suggested that surplus
manpower must be absorbed in village in order to migrate to
urban areas. It is needed to control traffic congestion in
urban region and people must be encouraged to use public
transport. India must improve the traffic control system to
avoid accidents. It is necessary to implement resilient clean-
up campaign. Government must make polices to construct
low cast multistory flats in order to accommodate the slum
dwellers. Government should provide funds to encourage
entrepreneurship and also find solution for pollution in the
nation. Reports of WHO stated that the health cities proposal
aimed to develop the physical, mental, environmental, and
social welfare of people who live and work in urban . People
from different backgrounds, including community members
to government representatives, from cities were organized
and encouraged to come together and work together in order
to deal with the problems that emerge in urban
environments. This association of people shared strategies,
success stories, and resources to tackle the concerns of the
local society. WHO reports indicated that, "A healthy city is
one that is continually creating and improving the physical
and social environments and expanding the community
resources that enable people to mutually support each other
in performing all the functions of life and in developing to
their maximum potential."
 To summarize, Urbanization is the substantial expansion of
urban areas due to rural migration and it is strongly related
to modernization, industrialization, and the sociological
process of rationalization. Urbanization commonly occurred
in developing countries because government has keenness
to accomplish a developed city status. As a result, almost all
area in the city has been developed and in the worst case
scenario, even the green areas are also turned into industrial
or business area. It illustrates that speedy urbanization has
many unconstructive implications especially towards social
and environmental aspects. While the process of
urbanization occurs at global scale, it is more visible in
developing countries. This growth has led to concerns about
the sustainability of these urban explosive growth in the
world population and migration of people to in urban is
causing major concern about the quality of life in these urban
and the life-supporting capacity of the planet ecologically
and communally.
The government should not be keen to develop a city without
considering the impacts towards the social and
environmental aspect. Instead, the government should
modify the urban development process in order to
accomplish a developed city and make efforts to lessen the
possibility of problems that might arise. In order to triumph
over urbanization issues and problems, Khosh-Chashm
(1995) recommended that the society should work together
closely with the authorities to assist in modernizing life in
urban area. The changeover from a rural to urban wealth is
very rapid in historical terms for most economic systems.
The task to full all the demands for jobs, shelter, water,
roads, transport and other urban infrastructure is
overwhelming. Presently, India already has numerous mega
cities. Many researchers believe that urbanization is good for
the financial growth of country but careful planning is
required to develop cities and offer basic amenities for
healthy living.


Overgrazing represents an environmental hazard whereby wildlife or

livestock excessively feeds on pasture. It is also the practice of grazing
livestock on vegetation before it has recovered from a former grazing state,
also known as intensive grazing. Otherwise stated, overgrazing takes place
when vegetation or pasture is repeatedly removed from land and it is not
given enough time to continue growing.
Intensive grazing thus causes the plant residual matter to decline and
further contributes to numerous negative consequences to both the animals
and the land. Consequently, overgrazing signifies a serious environmental
challenge in maintaining the natural balance of livestock on grazing lands,
which reduces the productivity, usefulness, and biodiversity of the land.
The following are the causes, effects, and solutions of overgrazing.

 Effects of overgrazing

1) Soil erosion: The continued trampling of numerous animals in an

average forage land will act to accelerate the death of plants and
vegetation cover. This is because the animals will graze even on the
slightest shoots of new growth. Without the plants or vegetation
cover, the soil is left bare and exposed to harsh weather such as
heavy downpour and high temperatures which disintegrates the rocks
and carries the top soil away. Animals also prefer gathering at
specific areas, like next to water sources, and such areas can get

2) land degradation: The acts of compaction and erosion as a result

of overgrazing can cause tremendous land degradation. In drier
areas, the experience is even worse as a large percentage of pasture
and land cover is destroyed, contributing to relentless progression of
desertification. In fact, in some areas overgrazing has led to complete
desertification. Overgrazing combined with overstocking has the most
damaging outcomes to the world’s natural environment.

The scarcity of water resources, water pollution, degeneration of coral

reefs, and eutrophication are all connected to overgrazing. The chief
polluting elements include farm chemicals and animal wastes. Intensive
grazing disrupts the water cycle and diminishes the replenishment
capability of ground water resources as substantial amounts of water is
used for feed production. In the South China Sea, overgrazing is linked
with nitrogen and phosphorous contamination.

3) Loss of valuable species: The natural composition of plant population

and their regeneration capacity is significantly affected by overgrazing.
The original pasture crops are composed of high quality pastures and
herbs with great nutritional value. When animals intensively graze on
such pastures, even the root stocks which contain the reserve food or
regeneration capacity get ruined. Once ruined, some other more
adaptable species such as weeds and unpalatable plants take up their
place. These secondary plant species have less nutritional values and
because they are highly adaptive, they replace the native species
thereby causing the loss of valuable plant species.

4) Food shortage/famine: As earlier stated, overgrazing is a primary

contributor to desertification because it converts arable or pasture land
into unproductive piece land. The resultant soil is thus not suited for
growing food since it loses its essential nutrients. The loss of land
productivity directly results in the loss of food available for consumption.
This heightens food supply reduction and if population growth is still
registered, it causes starvation and economic challenges.

5) Death of people and livestock: The long term effects of overgrazing

are food shortage which can make people and cattle die of starvation.
Without sufficient pasture for livestock grazing, cattle lack the necessary
nutrients for survival. The nutrient deficiencies make the animals unable
to gain weight appropriate to their productive stage and life which lowers
their chances of survival. Human survival levels, well-being, and health
are as well affected when there is inadequate food supply for
consumption. The end results are acute starvation and death of both
people and livestock.

Solution of overgrazing

1) Proper management of animals: As much as overgrazing is associated

with the number of animals, it’s more about the management of the
animals. There are several methods of grazing management to choose
from that can offer effective solutions to overgrazing. Examples are
rotational, cell, and mob grazing. It is simply up to those in charge of
grazing to take appropriate measures in ensuring that these management
practices are effectively utilized.

Each grazing management technique is tailored to meet different situation

and if well utilized, it can strongly assist in restoring the plant-growth during
the entire year. Proper management of animals also bears the potential of
wholly enhancing grazing land conditions via improved pasture production
and soil health.

2) Land use management: Land use management involves the proper

assessment of various land uses and the implications of human activities
on land. Local and regional factors such as aridity and rainfall patterns also
have to be considered before any land development or exploitation
implementations are undertaken. Proper urban planning and industry setup
has to be in accordance with up to date environmental policies on
sustainable urbanization, industry construction, and agricultural practices.
This avoids the over-utilization of available arable land and green pastures
and enables easier control policies on overstocking. Use of soil
conservation measures and silver pastoralism, in conjunction with
controlled livestock restriction from sensitive areas and payment schemes
for livestock-based land use can also help cut down and reverse the effects
of overgrazing.

3) Sustainable pasture practices: Sustainable pasture practices pertain to

grassland production in a well manage and controlled manner. The concept
is simply based on grassland management, animal management, land
management, and livestock marketing. When grazing management is
combined with a geology practices and sustainable agriculture, it gives rise
the most suitable grassland-based livestock production because it
encourages both animal and plant productivity and good health. Some of
the novel and impressive sustainable grazing models and management
systems that try to lessen or end overgrazing include permaculture and
holistic livestock management.

The solutions to overgrazing can be summarized as follows:

1. Avoiding the act of grazing too early, you can have the stockpiled
in the rainy season (spring) so that there is enough grass in the dry
periods (summer)
2. The use of a grazing chart can assist in planning out how to
implement rotational grazing
3. Monitoring rainfall patterns and the growth of pasture
4. Maintaining and managing proper pasture residuals in the grazing
5. Proper land use management practices
Effects or impact include:
1) Decline in the chemical , physical and /or biological properties of

2) Reduced availability of potable water

3) lessened volumes of surface water

4) Impacts on livestock and agriculturale.g.loss of animals due to

dehydration reduced yields.

5) Decline in productivity

6) Water and food insecurity.

7) Biodiversity loss.
 Sustainable land and management
The term SLM can be used to describe the utilization of terrestrial
resources ( soil, plants, water,) for the production of goods to satisfy
changing human needs ,without determine long term productive potential of
these resource and their environmental functions.
Land degradation occurs because of land poor management
practices. In order to assess sustainable land management
Practice, the climate resources and the risk of climate related
natural disaster need to be documented. The use of climate
information must be applied in developing sustainable
practices. There is need to apply sustainable management
practices in field or conservation land.
Thank you