"The destruction of sustainable family farming is one of the main causes of climate change
Massive rural exodus is one consequence of these policies. In Europe and in the United States, where almost all common goods have been privatized and where small farmers face harsh competition from highly subsidized industrial agriculture, less than 5% of the population is still engaged in farming. Everywhere in the world, small farmers and peasants are trapped between dependency on expensive seeds, inputs, and pesticides that they must buy from industry and the low prices they receive for their products. Peasants are being forced to leave the countryside and join the misery of urban shantytowns. Of the six billion inhabitants on Earth, three are now urban, including one billion that live in slums. Experts predict that soon the majority of urban people will live in shantytowns.
This rural exodus is one of the biggest threats to climate stability. Indeed, while small-scale family farming cools down the Earth, the industrial model of production and consumption that replaces it multiplies carbon emissions. Over the last 150 years, the industrialization of agriculture has meant replacing people's energy - men and women's work as farmers and peasants – by the energy of fossil fuel: tractors, fertilizers, the specialization of production and development of monocultures which requires long-distance transports of food and animal feed. This has meant replacing a model of production which was keeping great quantities of carbon in the soil by taking care of humus, by a system which uses four times more calories in fossil fuel than it is able to produce as food."
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