There is just the beginnings, maybe, of a constructive debate about the balance between “environment” and how that is interpreted in land use, and food production. Both world wars, particularly the second with the advent of U-boats, saw food security being a real issue. “Food security” is one of those things that politicians will verbally agree is an issue but there is scant evidence that it figures much in their efforts to be elected to power and to keep power when they have got there. However, we must be grateful for the colour of UK passports.
Yet, the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation) of the UN, for which some of my students have spent their careers with, are calculating that we will need to double food production globally by 2050. Most thinking people conclude that achieving that, or anywhere near it, would be an inconceivable miracle. It is not going to happen. So, whether the politicians and “environmentalists” can argue their positions as much as they like but unless we grasp population control and food security for the people, each in our own country, then sooner or later, probably too much later, the politicians will be out of power. By that time, not just our children, but our own selves, will need a lot of money to buy food off global markets. Putting land under buildings and into wildlife projects is great but the price in the long run will be greater.
Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd, 23 Dec 17
P.S. May 2018 bring some common sense into our national life.