Feeding the World: A Challenge for the Twenty-First Century

4.23 avg rating
( 30 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780262692717: Feeding the World: A Challenge for the Twenty-First Century
View all copies of this ISBN edition:
 
 

A realistic yet encouraging look at how society can change in ways that will allow us to feed an expanding global population.

This book addresses the question of how we can best feed the ten billion or so people who will likely inhabit the Earth by the middle of the twenty-first century. He asks whether human ingenuity can produce enough food to support healthy and vigorous lives for all these people without irreparably damaging the integrity of the biosphere.

What makes this book different from other books on the world food situation is its consideration of the complete food cycle, from agriculture to post-harvest losses and processing to eating and discarding. Taking a scientific approach, Smil espouses neither the catastrophic view that widespread starvation is imminent nor the cornucopian view that welcomes large population increases as the source of endless human inventiveness. He shows how we can make more effective use of current resources and suggests that if we increase farming efficiency, reduce waste, and transform our diets, future needs may not be as great as we anticipate.

Smil's message is that the prospects may not be as bright as we would like, but the outlook is hardly disheartening. Although inaction, late action, or misplaced emphasis may bring future troubles, we have the tools to steer a more efficient course. There are no insurmountable biophysical reasons we cannot feed humanity in the decades to come while easing the burden that modern agriculture puts on the biosphere.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

Review:

Can we do it? Plowing his furrow between the doomsayers and the blind optimists, agriculture researcher Vaclav Smil believes that our planet can sustain more than 10 billion people, and he makes his arguments clearly and plainly in Feeding the World: A Challenge for the Twenty-First Century. His prescription is fairly simple: waste less, eat less, and produce more--and he shows just how easy it could be. Just like doctors' advice that the key to losing weight is to eat less and exercise more, which is ignored in favor of simpler and less effective plans, Smil's ideas are just unglamorous enough to fall by the wayside. Why not take the easy way out and decide either that we're all doomed or that market forces will mysteriously solve problems that they have yet to acknowledge exist?

Smil prefers to look coolly at our habits and suggest how we can make moderate changes to our production and consumption and reap great benefits of efficiency--and better health. You won't be surprised to learn that beef takes a beating in the race to convert solar energy to food, but you might not know that pigs and chickens are practically neck and neck. Of course, all of our two- and four-legged friends are eating the dust of the grains and vegetables, proving again that slow and steady wins the race. If Smil's ideas can get the attention they deserve, and if as he says "China could do it," then we ought to be able to look forward to an equitable, sustainable place at the table for everyone, even as our population reaches 11 digits. --Rob Lightner

About the Author:

Vaclav Smil is Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of Manitoba. He is the author of forty books, including Power Density: A Key to Understanding Energy Sources and Uses and Made in the USA: The Rise and Retreat of American Manufacturing, both published by the MIT Press. In 2010 he was named by Foreign Policy as one of the Top 100 Global Thinkers. In 2013 Bill Gates wrote on his website that "there is no author whose books I look forward to more than Vaclav Smil."

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Buy New View Book
List Price: US$ 35.00
US$ 30.53

Convert Currency

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.

Destination, Rates & Speeds

Add to Basket

Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780262194327: Feeding the World: A Challenge for the Twenty-First Century

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  0262194325 ISBN 13:  9780262194327
Publisher: The MIT Press, 2000
Hardcover

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Vaclav Smil
Published by MIT Press Ltd, United States (2001)
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description MIT Press Ltd, United States, 2001. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book. A realistic yet encouraging look at how society can change in ways that will allow us to feed an expanding global population. This book addresses the question of how we can best feed the ten billion or so people who will likely inhabit the Earth by the middle of the twenty-first century. He asks whether human ingenuity can produce enough food to support healthy and vigorous lives for all these people without irreparably damaging the integrity of the biosphere. What makes this book different from other books on the world food situation is its consideration of the complete food cycle, from agriculture to post-harvest losses and processing to eating and discarding. Taking a scientific approach, Smil espouses neither the catastrophic view that widespread starvation is imminent nor the cornucopian view that welcomes large population increases as the source of endless human inventiveness. He shows how we can make more effective use of current resources and suggests that if we increase farming efficiency, reduce waste, and transform our diets, future needs may not be as great as we anticipate. Smil s message is that the prospects may not be as bright as we would like, but the outlook is hardly disheartening. Although inaction, late action, or misplaced emphasis may bring future troubles, we have the tools to steer a more efficient course. There are no insurmountable biophysical reasons we cannot feed humanity in the decades to come while easing the burden that modern agriculture puts on the biosphere. Seller Inventory # AAU9780262692717

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 30.53
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Vaclav Smil
Published by MIT Press Ltd
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
THE SAINT BOOKSTORE
(Southport, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description MIT Press Ltd. Paperback. Condition: New. New copy - Usually dispatched within 2 working days. Seller Inventory # B9780262692717

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 24.10
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 9.19
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Vaclav Smil
Published by MIT Press Ltd, United States (2001)
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Book Depository International
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description MIT Press Ltd, United States, 2001. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book. A realistic yet encouraging look at how society can change in ways that will allow us to feed an expanding global population. This book addresses the question of how we can best feed the ten billion or so people who will likely inhabit the Earth by the middle of the twenty-first century. He asks whether human ingenuity can produce enough food to support healthy and vigorous lives for all these people without irreparably damaging the integrity of the biosphere. What makes this book different from other books on the world food situation is its consideration of the complete food cycle, from agriculture to post-harvest losses and processing to eating and discarding. Taking a scientific approach, Smil espouses neither the catastrophic view that widespread starvation is imminent nor the cornucopian view that welcomes large population increases as the source of endless human inventiveness. He shows how we can make more effective use of current resources and suggests that if we increase farming efficiency, reduce waste, and transform our diets, future needs may not be as great as we anticipate. Smil s message is that the prospects may not be as bright as we would like, but the outlook is hardly disheartening. Although inaction, late action, or misplaced emphasis may bring future troubles, we have the tools to steer a more efficient course. There are no insurmountable biophysical reasons we cannot feed humanity in the decades to come while easing the burden that modern agriculture puts on the biosphere. Seller Inventory # AAU9780262692717

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 33.43
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Vaclav Smil (author)
Published by The MIT Press 2001-08-24, Cambridge, Mass. |London (2001)
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Blackwell's
(Oxford, OX, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description The MIT Press 2001-08-24, Cambridge, Mass. |London, 2001. paperback. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # 9780262692717

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 25.54
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 7.95
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Smil, Vaclav
Published by MIT Press (2001)
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Books2Anywhere
(Fairford, GLOS, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description MIT Press, 2001. PAP. Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from UK in 4 to 14 days. Established seller since 2000. Seller Inventory # WM-9780262692717

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 23.04
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 11.92
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Vaclav Smil
Published by MIT Press (2001)
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New Softcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Rating
[?]

Book Description MIT Press, 2001. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # EH9780262692717

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 32.98
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.47
From Germany to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Vaclav Smil
Published by MIT Press
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New Quantity Available: > 20
Seller:
INDOO
(Avenel, NJ, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description MIT Press. Condition: New. Brand New. Seller Inventory # 0262692716

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 34.34
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.60
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Vaclav Smil
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Ria Christie Collections
(Uxbridge, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Paperback. Condition: New. Not Signed; This book addresses the question of how we can best feed the ten billion or so people who will likely inhabit the Earth by the middle of the twenty-first century. He asks whether human ingenuity can produce enough food to support healthy and vigorous lives for all these people without irreparably da. book. Seller Inventory # ria9780262692717_rkm

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 32.88
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 5.13
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

Smil, Vaclav
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Pbshop
(Wood Dale, IL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description 2001. PAP. Condition: New. New Book.Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Seller Inventory # IB-9780262692717

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 34.79
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

Smil, Vaclav
Published by The MIT Press
ISBN 10: 0262692716 ISBN 13: 9780262692717
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
WFL
(Holtsville, NY, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description The MIT Press. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 0262692716 Brand New ,Original Book , Direct from Source , Express 6-8 business days worldwide delivery. Seller Inventory # RB#BE31074

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 34.69
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 4.90
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book