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Latest Arable land Stories

2010-11-05 15:39:13

Estimating the long-term impact of agriculture on land is tricky when you don't have much information about what a field was like before it was farmed. Some fields in Missouri started producing crops more than a century ago"”long before anyone kept detailed records about the physical and chemical properties of the soil in a field. Researchers can't go back in time to revisit old fields in their pristine state, but a University of Missouri graduate student did perhaps the next best...

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2009-07-30 14:47:15

Iraq is on the brink of an environmental catastrophe thanks to decades of war, mismanagement and drought, environmentalists say. Near daily dust storms, and shriveling riverbeds and marshes are turning arable land into desert, killing trees and plants, and transforming what was once the region's most fertile soil into an agricultural wasteland, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday. We're talking about something that's making the breadbasket of Iraq look like the Dust Bowl of Oklahoma in...

2008-08-28 00:00:22

Driving around Lincolnshire I notice that more land has been entered into large-scale arable reversion environmental schemes - a process where the land is allowed to revert to a natural state for the benefit of farmland wildlife species. I find myself struggling to accept these schemes where blocks of hundreds of acres are committed to arable reversion - or as a friend calls it 'arable rejection'. I fully support efforts to provide habitat for farmland species which struggle to survive in...

2008-07-22 06:00:00

By Andrew Martin Global food shortages have placed the Middle East and North Africa in a quandary because they are facing a choice of growing more crops to feed an expanding population or preserving their already scant supply of water. For decades, countries in this region have drained aquifers, sucked the salt from seawater and diverted the Nile to make the deserts bloom. But those projects were so costly and used so much water that it remained far more practical to import food than to...

2008-06-17 00:00:15

OFFICIAL plans that could result in Yorkshire's sea defences being abandoned, leaving areas of top-quality farmland to the encroaching sea, will cost at least Pounds 70m each year in lost crops, campaigners are warning. The Government is being accused of "lunatic short-term thinking" after its calculations showed the food production land lost each year to the sea would generate far more money for the economy than it would cost to protect it. As the Yorkshire Post revealed last year, the...

2006-07-12 20:17:05

By Michael Byrnes DICKS CREEK, Australia (Reuters) - Farmer John Ive squints through the barbed wire fence separating the roadside from an ulcerous patch of ground where salt has risen from the earth to collapse the land into crumbling, barren ravines. Black stumps from an earlier fence, decayed from the bottom up by salt, dance from wire strands in the biting wind. "These sites are pockmarked across the southern tablelands," says Ive, shaking his head in despair at desertification...