Saturday, August 16, 2008

Land in America

I was doing some research the other day on land use. Interesting stuff.


Here is the breakdown of land use in the U.S. (not including Alaska and Hawaii). Of this, roughly 61% is used for agriculture either for crops or grazing. Of that, roughly 2/3 of agricultural land, or 40% of all land is used for grazing animals to feed.
Also, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, farming and ranching are responsible for 69% of all species endangerment in the United States.
If I'm reading this right, we're killing endangered animals in order to grow cows, pigs and chickens. Doesn't that seem a little crazy? Makes you want to be a vegetarian.

Resources:
1. Major Uses of Land in the United States, 1997. By Marlow Vesterby and Kenneth S. Krupa. Resource Economics Division, Economic Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. Statistical Bulletin No. 973.
2. The Truth About Land Use in the United States, by George Wuerthner, Watersheds Messenger, 2000

7 comments:

Millennial 4 Earth said...

it would be really interesting to sort this by land ownership as well. especially since the us government (BLM, Forest Service, Parks Service, military) own/manage a SIGNIFICANT part of the western part of the US.

mel starrs said...

Would be good as well to see the proportion of urban land. The UK have just released figures with a similar breakdown:
http://www.melstarrs.com/elemental/2008/08/05/sustainable-development-indicators-in-your-pocket-2008/

Natal property said...

Hello,

I don't know before about this info you describe blog about land portion thanks.

Bucharest property said...

The information you provided is useful for every person who are interested in real estate business in this area.

Anonymous said...

What would be really interesting is if people didn't misinterpret land use data as implicative of endangered species being "killed" in the name of animal agriculture. It's incredible to me that Americans, particularly those in environmental and urban planning and design have such difficulty coming to grips with the importance of agriculture in this country and globally and the interdependency of the urban sphere and the rural hinterland. The incessant fascination with unsustainable land use patterns and their thinly-veiled suburban perpetuating 'sprawl-ternatives' such as New Urbanism are proof positive that those of us in the design world have failed to come to grips with the economic and ecological relationship urbana has with nature. Until we do, we sprawl on, and people will continue to scandalize agriculture rather than praise it as we should.

Oh, and to the last comment, the Federal government does own a significant portion of land in the West. It's fact. Not scandal.

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It is great to read your post about the land in America and your time which spend in America and information about America its all great.

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