Agriculture and Sustainability
Sustainability is based on a simple principle: Everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on our natural environment. Agriculture contributes directly to sustainable stewardship of the land, air and water. Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the food, feed, and fiber needs of our country and the social, economic and other requirements of present and future generations.
Sustainable agriculture is important to making sure that we have and will continue to have, the water, materials, and resources to protect human health and our environment.
Sustainability Information from EPA
- Sustainable Futures
- Sustainable Marketplace: Greener Products and Services
- Sustainable Management of Food
- Sustainable Management of Electronics
- Smart Growth - Smart growth helps communities grow in ways that expand economic opportunity while protecting human health and the environment.
- Local Food, Local Places - Local Foods, Local Places helps communities create walkable, healthy, economically vibrant neighborhoods through the development of local food systems.
Sustainability Information from Other Sources
- USDA Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) Exit - Since 1988, the SARE grants and education program has advanced agricultural innovation that promotes profitability, stewardship of the land, air and water, and quality of life for farmers, ranchers and their communities.
Sustainable Agriculture and Tribes
- People of the Land Publication: Sustaining American Indian Agriculture in Idaho, Nevada, Oregon and Washington Exit -- A curriculum from the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program aims to help those who work with American Indians better understand the unique challenges faced by native farmers. The materials are titled "People of the Land".
Sustainable Management of Food is a systematic approach that seeks to reduce wasted food and its associated impacts over the entire life cycle, starting with the use of natural resources, manufacturing, sales, and consumption and ending with decisions on recovery or final disposal. EPA works to promote innovation and highlight the value and efficient management of food as a resource. Through the sustainable management of food, we can help businesses and consumers save money, provide a bridge in our communities for those who do not have enough to eat, and conserve resources for future generations. Building on the familiar concept of "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle," this approach shifts the view on environmental protection and more fully recognizes the impacts of the food we waste.
- Case Study: New Seasons Market Feeding the Soil and those in Need -- Case study on the environmental and human health impacts recycling food wastes has on soil quality and leads to more sustainable agriculture in addition to saving lots of money.
- Anaerobic Digestion and its Applications -- Report on how AD can help generate "green" soils and minimize environmental impacts using sustainable agriculture.
- Reducing Wasted Food and Packaging: A Guide for Food Services and Restaurants -- Guide on methods to divert food scraps and waste to feed people, create healthy soils, create energy, and to be used as animal feed on farms.
- Food Scraps Go to the Animals: Barthold Recycling and Roll-off Services -- Factsheet/advertisement for a company that picks up food waste and delivers it to farms to be used as animal feed.