La risorsa alimentare globale e la capacità della scienza di superare i limiti attuali: Malthus ha ancora torto?

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Giuseppe Zerbi
Paolo Ceccon *
(*) Corresponding Author:
Paolo Ceccon | pceccon@uniud.it

Abstract

More than two centuries ago, T.R. Malthus postulated the human reproductive capacity being higher than the earth’s feeding capacity. As last decades’ population growth proved Malthus theory wrong, experts agree that this can be attributed to the application of technology in agriculture, leading to a significant enhancement of unit yields (first green revolution). However, heavy social and environmental costs were paid to reach such stunning achievements; moreover, they have seemingly gained a steady level, owing to increasing pressure of several limiting factors (e.g., soils, water, and nutrients availability; global change, etc.). Malthus prediction is therefore still relevant when trying to match population growth and food availability: the time seems ripe to launch a second green revolution, focused on lowimpact, easily accessible technologies.

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Author Biographies

Giuseppe Zerbi, Università degli Studi di Udine

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie e Ambientali

Paolo Ceccon, Università degli Studi di Udine

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie e Ambientali