Agriculture and other natural resource-based enterprises are the foundation for economic growth in many developing countries. Of the 11 percent of the world’s land surface that is suitable for agriculture, 38 percent has become degraded by poor natural resource management practices. With no significant room to expand areas of cultivation, good farming practices and stewardship of the available land are necessary to increase agricultural productivity, ensure economic growth, protect biodiversity, maintain sufficient amounts of clean water, and meet the increasing food demands of a growing global population.
Sustainable agriculture is founded on the premise that our resources can be carefully managed and cultivated to make them last indefinitely. Here are few practices that can sustainably intensify farming system productivity:
Sustainable agriculture integrates environmental health, economic viability, and social equity to ensure long-term productivity of natural resources and improved livelihoods. It helps reduce the risks in developing countries of complex problems like climate change and water scarcity. It is also important because agriculture constitutes approximately 70 percent of water consumption in the developing world, increasingly competing with demand for domestic, industrial, and ecosystem services.