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    Improving Crop Yields Could Cut Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    By By Valerie Smock
    September 06, 2013, 6:32:29 AM EDT

    Have you ever decided to donate something to someone else? It probably made you feel great knowing you were cleaning out your own clutter but also helping someone in need. The feeling is twofold. The same may be true when it comes to food and climate change.

    A new study published in the journal, Environmental Research Letters, says improving crop yields by using sustainable methods could cut greenhouse gas emissions. In turn, these changes could also provide more food to people in need. Researchers found that by investing in better farming practices, it could mean big benefits for food security and greenhouse gas emissions.

    "The most efficient way to ensure sustainable intensification on the crop side is to rely on practices and technologies that are not more fertilizer-demanding, such as new varieties, improved rotations, integrated crop-livestock practices, and precision farming," said IIASA researcher Hugo Valin, who led the study.

    The study also emphasized the effects of increased food production on demand. In the end, more food availability leads to lower prices and therefore greater demand. That extra demand means that farmers will want to continue expanding, to produce even more food.

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