As Earth’s populations grow, will key planetary systems be pushed over the “tipping point” beyond Earth’s carrying capacity for sustaining human life? There is a strong body of literature developing the concept of Planetary Boundaries to help identify the limits for maintaining the Earth’s environmental stability. It is presumed that exceeding the Planetary Boundaries will result in an environmental tipping point, shifting the earth into a new environmental equilibrium detrimental to life as we know it. Research shows industrial agriculture is a major force pressing the environment to, and beyond, these limits. This review of top tier journals details the relationship between key planetary systems and the many adverse impacts of industrial agriculture. The issues of the Planetary Boundaries are reviewed to support sustainable agriculture while the opposing multinational industrial agriculture corporations continue to influence national environmental regulations.
Current literature debates the major issue of whether or not the political systems can institute sustainable solutions before it's too late. This debate suggests grassroots efforts may represent the most viable solution to displace the “status quo” industrial agriculture model. Agroecology is a science for studying grassroots systems for sustainable agriculture. This literature defined the indigenous knowledge and agricultural skills developed through multiple generations specific to local environments, climates and populations. Further research is recommended to explore agroecological solutions based on urban agriculture for increasing food production and also creating a sustainable alternative to the insidious industrial agriculture systems.
Weaver, Eric RR
"Sustainable Development for People or Profit?,"
Suburban Sustainability: Vol. 3
, Article 2.
Available at: http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/subsust/vol3/iss1/2