Developing a Framework for Environmental Quality Management: The Case of Agriculture in the United States

By Bandyopadhyay, Jayanta K.; Contractor, Pooja | International Journal of Management, June 2012 | Go to article overview

Developing a Framework for Environmental Quality Management: The Case of Agriculture in the United States


Bandyopadhyay, Jayanta K., Contractor, Pooja, International Journal of Management


The mass scale agricultural and farming practices in the U.S in the past decades with its technological and chemical emphasis, to increase output for supporting a growing population has no doubt, created enormous prosperity, but at the expense of the deterioration of the environment and the emergence of many disabling and killer diseases in the U.S. This is where the need for environmental quality management in agriculture and farming industry has become critical to our survival and quality of life. This research first describes the relationship between agriculture and environmental pollution, next focused on impact of agriculture on environment in the United States. Then, the paper presents a theoretical model of sustainable agriculture, and a practical model of Agricultural Environmental Quality Management System (AEQMS). Finally, a framework is presented for implementing this (AEQMS) system for the maintenance of sustainable agriculture in the United States.

Introduction

Janke and Freyenberger (1997) reported that mass scale agricultural and farming practices in the U.S in the past decades with its technological and chemical emphasis, to increase output for supporting a growing population has created enormous prosperity at the expense of the deterioration of the environment and the emergence of many disabling and kuler diseases in the U.S. This is where the need for Environmental Quality Management in agriculture and farming industry has become critical to our survival and quality of life (13). However, most of these environmental quality researches primarily focused on the integrated study of contaminants, soils, sediments and pollutants in the air, and in the marine environment, and their implications for risk evaluation, management strategy development and deployment. Largosen (2007) reported that most of the environmental quality research in agriculture and farming in the past decade, focused on environmental contamination by dangerous substances such as biocides, and pesticides and their impacts on air pollution (on nitrogen and ozone layers), on sensitive vegetation, and crop production, and on ecology and public health (11).

Agriculture and environmental pollution

Agriculture has long been recognized as a major source of pollution and in many countries International Chamber of Commerce (2004) reported that in many countries, farmers have to get an approval of their management practices in order to avoid conflicts with environmental quality (10). Christopoulou, Polyzos, and Minetos (2007) presented a rising concern about the adverse effects of peri-urban deforestation which have been taking place in many countries due to shortages of developable space near urban areas.. Forest and peri-urban forest usually help adjusting extreme temperature conditions in urban areas. Peri-urban forests also hold great aesthetic, economic, recreational and health values to the society and have many positive effects on the human physical and spiritual health. Above all, peri-urban forests offer protection to people, buildings and infrastructure from natural disasters such as soil erosion, flooding, avalanches, and land slides (5). Enserink, and Koppenjan (2007) reported that China with large number of populations, its rapid economic growth and inefficient use of natural resources lead to excessive pollution and rapid depletion of its natural resources., and that its government has already put forth a number of environmental policies and legislations to protect the environment in order to produce a more sustainable growth (8). Makame(2007) reported that majority of people in Zanzibar still cook using traditional stoves which consume a great deal of wood to the extent of deteriorating forest resources (12).

Until now, very little attention has been given to developing cause and effect relationship between environmental factors and quality management. Some regions of the world have experienced extremely rapid development while such progress has been lacking in the rest of the world. …

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