Articles on Agriculture

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Research shows that farm parents do not mindlessly expose their children to risks; rather they weigh them against the the positive impacts of involvement in the family’s agricultural heritage. (Shutterstock)

How to improve farm safety for kids

Instructing farmers to keep their kids away from farm machinery doesn't work to reduce traumatic injury. A recent research project tried listening instead.
Transport and livestock are both significant contributors to nitrogen pollution. Annalucia/Shutterstock.com

You’ve heard of a carbon footprint – now it’s time to take steps to cut your nitrogen footprint

The University of Melbourne is the first institution in Australia to have its nitrogen footprint calculated – it's 139 tonnes per year, mainly because of food production, energy use and transport.
A farmer plows a dry and dusty cotton field near Phoenix, Ariz., while a drought affects the Southwest. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

How to fight desertification and drought at home and away

Desertification is a problem of global proportions. If action isn't taken now, it will accelerate and fuel further migration and conflict.
A barn that can hold up to 4,800 hogs outside Berwick, Pa. The state says the farm is in compliance with regulations, but residents have gone to court seeking relief from odors. AP Photo/Michael Rubinkam

Rural Americans’ struggles against factory farm pollution find traction in court

Many people who live near large-scale livestock farms complain about noxious smells, air and water pollution and health risks. With little help from regulators, they are turning to lawsuits.
Crop insurance is designed to help farmers weather disasters such as Hurricane Irma, which devastated many Florida citrus farms in 2017. AP Photo/Tamara Lush

Crop insurance is good for farmers, but not always for the environment

Crop insurance cushions farmers against natural disasters, but it also can lead them to overuse resources and reduce their incentive to adapt to climate change.
Soybean seeds treated with neonicotinoids (blue) and treated corn seeds (red) versus untreated seeds. Ian Grettenberger/PennState University

Why it’s time to curb widespread use of neonicotinoid pesticides

US farmers are planting more and more acres with seeds coated with neonicotinoid pesticides. An ecologist explains why this approach is overkill and may be doing more harm than good.

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