Urbanization facts and figures (UN-HABITAT) -In 1975, 5 of the 10 largest cities were from less developed countries and 5 from more developed countries. In 2005, 8 of the 10 largest cities were from less developed countries. In 1975 Urban population was 813 million in less developed countries and 704 million in more developed countries. Rural population was 2208 million in less developed countries and 344 million in more developed countries. In 2005 Urban population was 2266 million in less developed countries and 344 in more developed countries. Rural population was 2978 in less developed countries and 303 in more developed countries. Population growth - Today, virtually one out of every two people on the planet is "cityzen" (city dweller). The year 2007 will mark a turning point in human history: the world's urban population will for the first time equal the world's rural population. Asia and Africa will accomplish the urban transition in 2030. Asia has the largest urban population (more than 1.5 billion people) even though slightly less than 40% of its population is urbanized.

Urban growth: Facts and figures (BBC news) - The world is steadily becoming more urbanised, as the pace of growth of urban populations far outpaces world population growth. Some time in the next year, the proportion of the human race living in cities is projected to cross the 50% threshold. Explore the key facts and figures about urbanisation.

Changing shape of rural agricultural land.
Many agricultural lands are being converted to urban and industrial land. click photo

Urban Growth Fact Sheet (Christchurch City Council) - The expansion of the urban area has two main causes (which are usually inter-related): Population and household growth,  Economic expansion.

click to enlarge
more the population greater the demand of conusmer goods results more pollution

Global Warming Fast Facts (National Geographic News) - Global warming, or climate change, is a subject that shows no sign of cooling down.

THE 33 FACTS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING(globalwarming.sdsu.edu) - deforestation, overgrazing, overcultivation, desertification, and salinization--reduce the net uptake of carbon dioxide, indirectly contributing, however slightly, to global warming.

Facts and Figures: The Different Water Users(wateryear2003.org) - Agriculture - Almost 70% of all available freshwater is used for agriculture. Overpumping of groundwater by the world's farmers exceeds natural replenishment by at least 160 billion cubic metres a year. Industry - World: 22% of total water use - High-income countries: 59% of total water use - Low-income countries: 8% of total water use. Energy - There are now about 45,000 large dams in operation worldwide. Built to provide hydropower and irrigation water and to regulate river flow to prevent floods and droughts, they have had a disproportionate impact on the environment. Collectively, they have inundated more than 400,000 km of mostly productive land - an area the size of California. Fully one fifth of the world's freshwater fish are now either endangered or extinct. Somewhere between 40 and 80 million people have been displaced by dams, forced to relocate to other, often less productive, land.

Coconut farming
click to enlarged view

Surface Area of the Earth - Only about 28% of the arable land on the African continent is used for growing crops. Immense tracts of forests or jungles would have to be cleared to bring the rest of the arable land on that continent to productive use. only about one eighth of each imaginary plot of land distributed to each person is land which is under cultivation. In effect, each person has a piece of land about 26,000 square feet (a square 161 feet on each side or just a bit more than an acre) at his or her disposal on which to grow all that he or she needs.

Distressing "FACTS"

Food price rises and Crisis!!!!

Distressing "FACTS" | Paambati snake catchers | Makuttam Paniyar and poverty Facts | Cannanore Paniyar Tribes Poverty | Carpet weavers and poverty crisis | Malai Malasar tribes of Topslip | Poverty of kurumbar tribes in Mukkali (KERALA) | unemployment & Jaisalmer (Rajasthan) | The purpose of rural education fails when!!!! | The untouchable Leprosy Patients | "POVERTY" articles and news links | Food price rises and Crisis!!!! | Economic and financial crisis | Privacy policy

Food is the first priority for each consumer, expensive food would prune consumption of other product’s and services. Food and water has to cheapest of all commodities in order to promote materialistic world order.

Urban population on the rise (nationalgeographic) -The urban habitat is different from any other, it's man-made, built by humans for us to live in. Today, almost half of the world's population are urban dwellers. Cities have existed for thousands of years and can be traced back to the river valley civilizations of Mesopotomia (present-day Iraq), Egypt, India and China. At first, these settlements depended largely on agriculture and domestic cattle, but as they grew in size they became centers for merchants and traders. While less than one-third of the world's population lived in cities in 1950, about two thirds of humanity is expected to live in urban areas by 2030. Most of that urbanization is taking place in Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

Food grain shortage may have many reasons but two main reasons we are not taking into consideration. They are excessive urban growth and pruning agricultural lands and agriculture as non profitable business any more. One of the richest states (KERALA) in India has turned as consumer state rather than producing. 25 years back it produced rice and sold to other states now as the land converted to urban and houses has resulted shortage of agricultural land the main culprit for this issue is non profitable business.   This situation will further aggravate if state government does step up for immediate action.


Similar situation is now with entire world, demand is more and production is less due to imbalanced economic policies. More attention is given to urban economic growth than the rural research and development. A day will come when a slogan or will find ad “Buy one kg of rice and get a laptops free” as computers and other electronic products will be much cheaper. Economic growth has to be balanced considering social condition of the country. Banning exports of essential items is only temporary solution to overcome present situation but for future food grain shortage will further aggravate as

  • Urban related economic growth thrusts agricultural land conversion to cities and to accommodate urban population and industries. Over 20% of farm lands of developing countries have been converted to cities and buildings for the past decades and Over 50% of farmlands of villages (close to cities) got merged with cities so can accommodate growing urban population.
  • Global warming - Nature earth’s own modifications and adjustments is the natural. Excessive human population, Excessive concrete buildings – industries (even excessive urbanization has role to warm our globe), carbon fuel based transportations heat up environment to reduce moisture in land results shortage and uncertain rain, river shrinkage, draught, shortage of water and so on.
  • 25 years back there was more agricultural land than of today many of them converted to more and more housing and industrial lands; whereas population growing fast, feeding will become challenge to most countries even developed countries will not escape. Nature’s priority is water, food and then shelter. Economic and scientific growth need to be first based on human needs.
  • Non profitable food grain production to most developing country farmers  (international organization and appropriate governments shall have to reconsider bring back agricultural subsidies). Also make agriculture more profitable by linking customer and farmers by way of direct procurement by large stores, and other agencies so mediators and brokers are kept away. Impact of fuel and energy, fertilizer, labour  cost unbearable to farmers have converted land to other use. Low yield in small farm lands of farmers of thickly populated developing countries account loss or not even enough for own use.  Present situation is such that farmers get more profit selling their land to builders than farming.

  • Once upon a time Asian countries produced major global food grain requirement. Neglecting rural economy and urban based education system  failed to attract young-generation towards farming. These young generation flooded urban cities in search of opportunities. Lack of rural and farming research reduced employment opportunities and reduced income from farm sector encouraged villagers leave land and settle down in cities is one of the major set back to agricultural sector. international affort to arrange more allocation of fund and land to agricultural sector. Change in education pattern so to improve student’s taste towards agriculture and its research that includes animal farming

  • Irrigation and water shortage (In fact water crisis is there but in some states and countries water is excessive causing disaster or consumed by sea. If scientists of missiles or warplanes work on how river water reaches sea after consumed by entire world, would convert desert land to fertile land).

  • Escalation of essential food prices by "Satta" (commodity-figure gambling)  “futures” trading (without add on value to product) helps hording so less and less mediators between producer and final customer. Present system of trading agricultural goods only helps middlemen from wholesalers to brokers. Their financial power helps them hold back stock to create artificial shortage. Tough international legislation to arrest speculative gambling of essential commodities.

  • Bio fuel is not alone the reason for food crisis as one day world will have to switch over to alternate source for fuel usage and bio fuel will be one of the substitutes.  However, using human food as fuel is unjustified as food is the first priority than the fuel. Need to source other plants such as river or sea plants or from land plants not used for growing food grain.

Rice around the World (IRRI.org) - World rice production in 2007 was approximately 645 million t. At least 114 countries grow rice and more than 50 have an annual production of 100,000 t or more. Asian farmers produce about 90% of the total, with two countries, China and India, growing more than half the total crop.

Causes of Global Warming (ecobridge.org) - “As human-caused biodiversity loss and climate disruption gain ground, we need to keep our sights clear and understand that the measure of a threat is not a matter of whether it is made on purpose, but of how much loss it may cause. It's an ancient habit to go after those we perceive to be evil because they intended to do harm. It's harder, but more effective, to "go after," meaning to more effectively educate and socialize, those vastly larger numbers of our fellow humans who are not evil, but whose behavior may in fact be far more destructive in the long run." (Ed Ayres, editor of Worldwatch magazine, Nov/Dec 2001)

World food crisis turns rice into gold (Times Online) - Thailand’s 20 million farmers find themselves at the centre of an unprecedented surge in global food prices — a “silent tsunami”, in the words of the UN World Food Programme — that is threatening starvation for millions.

The world ignores these farmers at its peril (independent.co.uk) - Some of the causes of high prices – world population growth, the changing diets of the China and India, rising fuel prices – are forces that governments can only hope to manage, rather than reverse. The same is true, to some extent, of the recent production-impeding droughts brought about by climate change. But there are certainly things that governments can do to make a difference.

After Rice, Bush blames India for food crisis ( Merinews) - If the US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice says something, you can be sure of its endorsement by Bush. After Rice's remarks that India and China were responsible for the global food crisis, the US President has also suggested something similar.. TAKING AN apparent dig at the rising Indian middle class, which he feels is demanding better lifestyles and more nutrition, the US President, George Bush, has said that the huge appetite of the Indian middle class is behind the spiralling global food prices.
(In my opinion what is said above is illogic - India and china being biggest nations comprising nearly 37% of world population are getting richer and richer that does not mean they eat more than what they ate before. Their increased life standard makes them consume richer food like, expensive rice, expensive wheat or corn products, fruit, milk made products, meat, fish, and other rich nutrition food. Rice, wheat, or others are basic food meant for poor and lower middle class. Traditionally Asians consume more rice and wheat than vegetable or meat at lunch or dinner but increased standard of life shifts the eating habits to better nutrition and expensive food, further, urban population eat lesser as compared  to  rural population as these people have more physical labour than the urban population who have more mental and stress jobs. To me the real causes for rice or essential food shortage are excessive urban growth (resulted due to heavy industrialization and urban economic education and planning)  by converting agricultural lands for urbanization, “satta” futures trading, hording, increasing population of  country through migration from neighboring country or failure of family planning. Second biggest factor to my opinion is commodity-figure gambling became popular for growing middle class in such countries. This practice without add on value to products only helps hording, black marketing to  escalates market price . Then comes the major cause that is spiraling cost of agricultural production)

click to enlarge
Sugarcane agricultural land

click to enlarge
Local sugar cottage industry

click to enlarge
Vegitable market. consumer pays 5-10 times higher price than actual sold by farmer

International attention need to be drawn towards promoting agriculture in order to avoid excessive urbanization and rocketing prices of essential commodities.  Not only it should arrest black marketing or hoarding rather should also try Incentivising farmers of Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe so stay in agriculture, before it is too late.  Fundamental agriculture must become profitable to farmers than switching to commercial activities.    Agriculture is classified mainly in two categories:

         i.            Fundamental agriculture: That needed for human survival, i.e. fruit, vegetable, grain, oil and seeds, cereals, essential spices, salt, and etc.  Farmers of such products if prioritized, irrespective of size of farm land, would give more. This may be one of the solutions to retain them to Fundamental agriculture:  

  Incentive based on the production per M2 or bighas or acre so more produced would get more.  Small farmers can earn more by organic quality products.  Quality and quantity both be taken into account as quality producers would give lesser yield.

  Labour cost all over the world has increased discouraging farmers. Most farmers end up in losses. So Incentive per Kg or tonne sold should cover cost and the profit. This is one of the ways to improve rural employment opportunity and living standard of agricultural workers, without upsetting farmers.

       ii.            Commercial Agriculture: We can divide this to two categories:

  Commercial agriculture but essential for human survival – Such agriculture is essential for human and are basic needs. These may be milk, fishery, poultry, bio fertilizer, organic products and so on. Over 60% of Indian farmers are with small lands unable to grow sufficient for market and self.  Many states of India with rising urbanization are neglecting these sectors.  Blame goes to educational system that helps urbanization.

*      Small farmers with very less land need encouragement and training to set up alternative sources of agriculture such as poultry, fishery etc., in order to promote production to accommodate shortfall and rising prices.

*      Allowances and interest free loans, to promote produce and their living standard.  

*      Direct marketing facilities without multiple mediators.

  2nd category is agriculture with commercial intention:  Rubber, spices, and wood of commercial usage, flowers and ornamental ingredients, dry fruits, spirits, chemicals, medicinal and cosmetic usage, bio fuel and etc.    

Population growth and urbanization(water year 2003) -Every day, there are 18,000 additional urban dwellers in the world: by 2008, more than half the world population will live in urban areas. Africa: Though Africa is predominantly rural, it is the continent with the fastest rate of urbanisation. Asia: The greatest urban growth will occur in Asia in the next thirty years. By 2030, Asia and Africa will both have higher numbers of urban dwellers than any other major area of the world. Latin America and the Caribbean: Today, 75% of the region’s population is urbanized, compared to 50% in the 1960s.

How much of the world is forested? (United Nations Environment Programme -Forests cover 30 per cent of the planet’s total land area. The total forested area in 2005 was just under 4 billion hectares, at least one third less than before the dawn of agriculture, some 10,000 years ago. (1 hectare is equal to 10,000 square metres).

Agricultural Trade (Questia)By books articles from Questia - science and practice of producing crops and livestock from the natural resources of the earth. Rice Trade - Rice - cereal grain (Oryza sativa) of the grass family (Graminae), probably native to the deltas of the great Asian rivers—the Ganges, the Chang (Yangtze), and the Tigris and Euphrates. The plant is an annual, from 2 to 6 ft (61–183 cm) tall, with a round, jointed stem; long, pointed leaves; and edible seeds borne in a dense head on separate stalks. Wild rice is obtained from a... GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade) - General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade - (GATT), former specialized agency of the United Nations. It was established in 1948 as an interim measure pending the creation of the International Trade Organization. However, plans for the latter were abandoned and GATT continued to exist until the end of 1995. Members of GATT were pledged to work together to reduce tariffs and other barriers to...Global Economy - With unprecedented trends towards globalization, the repercussions of economic crises are more profound than ever before, particularly for developing countries. What Global Economic Crises? bridges the gap between theory and policy-making by examining the destabilizing effects of financial crises on... OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) - Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries - (OPEC), multinational organization (est. 1960, formally constituted 1961) that coordinates petroleum policies and economic aid among oil-producing nations. Its Board of Governors and board chairperson are elected by member nations; OPEC's headquarters are in Vienna, Austria. Members consist of Algeria, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria

Inflation, public debt and agricultural neglect (Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka) -The high rate of inflation, large public debt and the slow progress in agriculture are among three of the key areas highlighted in the Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific, Report for 2008. The UN Economic Commission for Asia and the Far Eat (ESCAP) warned of rising inflationary pressures, the large public debt burden and slow progress in agriculture. These are three areas that this column has focused on often. Yet, as we have said before, advice on these falls on deaf ears. The ESCAP report is another warning of the dire consequences of these poor economic indicators.

The Millennium Development Goals and Water (unesco.org) -We will spare no effort to free our fellow men, women and children from the abject and dehumanizing conditions of extreme poverty, to which more than a billion of them are currently subjected. We are committed to making the right to development a reality for everyone and to freeing the entire human race from want. (UN Millennium Declaration, UN A/Res/55/2, 2000.)