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Von Thünen Model – What farmers produce varies by distance from the town, with livestock raising farthest from town. – Cost of transportation governs use.

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Presentation on theme: "Von Thünen Model – What farmers produce varies by distance from the town, with livestock raising farthest from town. – Cost of transportation governs use."— Presentation transcript:

1 Von Thünen Model – What farmers produce varies by distance from the town, with livestock raising farthest from town. – Cost of transportation governs use of land. – First effort to analyze the spatial character of economic activity.

2 Von Thünen Johann Heinrich von Thünen ( ) wrote Der Isolierte Staat (The Isolated State) which is the foundation of location theory. Noted how crops near Rostock, Germany changed with no change in soil-mapped the pattern With terrain, soils and rainfall the same he created the ringed-pattern Noted that transportation costs governed land use

3 Von Thünen Model

4 Application of Von Thünen Model Geographer Lee Liu studied the spatial pattern of agriculture production in China. Found: -farmers living in a village farm both lands close to the village and far away intensively -methods varied spatially – resulting in land improvement (by adding organic material) close to village and land degradation (lots of pesticides and fewer conservation tactics) farther from village.

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6 Third Agriculture Revolution (Green Revolution) invention of high-yield grains, especially rice, with goal of reducing hunger. - increased production of rice - new varieties in wheat and corn - reduced famines due to crop failure, now most famines are due to political problems - impact (in terms of hunger) is greatest where rice is produced

7 Average Daily Calorie Consumption per Capita

8 Opposition to Green Revolution Opposition argues Green Revolution has led to: – vulnerability to pests – Soil erosion – Water shortages – Micronutrient deficiencies – Dependency on chemicals for production such as pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers. – Increased foreign debt

9 Development of technology and dissemination was largely public or quasi- public sector, international agricultural research centers (IRACs)with R&D in millions of dollars. Plant breeders’ rights and patents generally not relevant. Increased monoculture and use of farm chemicals led to marginalization of small farmer, ecological degradation. From M. Kenney and F Buttel, “Biotechnology; Prospects and Dilemmas for the Third World Development.”

10 The Next Stage: Bio-Revolution Proprietary considerations: genes, cells, plants, animals patentable as well as techniques to produce them Affects potentially all crops; vegetables, fruits, etc. Includes pesticides, animals products, pharmaceuticals, processed food products, energy, mining, warfare. Includes all areas, nations, locations, even marginal lands. Technology is largely in private sector, especially corporations; R&D in billions. Tissue culture crop propagation produces exact genetic copies; even more vulnerability Crop substitution replacing Third World exports; herbicide tolerance; increasing chemical use Unintended consequence: Engineered organisms may affect environment later in unknown ways.


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