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Environmental Performance of Agriculture in OECD Countries Since 1990

image of Environmental Performance of Agriculture in OECD Countries Since 1990

In OECD countries, agriculture uses on average over 40% of land and water resources, and thus has significant affect on the environment. This report provides the latest and most comprehensive data and analysis on the environmental performance of agriculture in OECD countries since 1990. It covers key environmental themes including soil, water, air and biodiversity and looks at recent policy developments in all 30 countries.

Over recent years the environmental performance of agriculture has improved in many countries, largely due to consumer pressure and changing public opinion. Many OECD countries are now tracking the environmental performance of agriculture, which is informing policy makers and society on the trends in agri-environmental conditions, and can provide a valuable aid to policy analysis. The indicators in this report provide crucial information to monitor and analyse the wide range of policy measures used in agriculture today, and how they are affecting the environment. 

Did You Know?  In OECD countries, agriculture uses on average 40% of land and water resources.

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OECD Country Trends of Environmental Conditions related to Agriculture since 1990: Turkey

Agriculture remains the major sector for employment in Turkey, but the sector’s role in the economy is declining. Primary agriculture’s share in employment decreased from 47% in 1990 to 34% in 2004, but the contribution to GDP is smaller declining over the same period from 17% to 11% [1, 2, 3] Figure 3.28.1. The agricultural labour force, about half of which are women who mainly work as unpaid family labour, experience a high incidence of poverty, poor education, and low provision of public services, although this situation is beginning to improve [2, 3]. Agricultural production has grown rapidly since 1990, among the highest rates of growth across OECD countries (Figures 3.28.2 and 3.28.3). Agriculture is becoming more intensive as the expansion in production and use of purchased variable inputs has grown more rapidly since 1990 than the 1% increase in area cultivated from 1990-92 to 2002-04 (Figures 3.28.2 and 3.28.3). The volume of agricultural production rose by 16% between 1990-92 and 2002-04, with crop production increasing by 19% and livestock 11% (mainly poultry, as grazing livestock numbers have fallen) [4]. Over the same period the use of purchased farm inputs also increased for inorganic nitrogen fertilisers by 11%, by 60% for pesticides (1993-2002), 59% for direct on-farm energy consumption, and by 65% for water use, although the use of inorganic phosphate fertilisers declined by –15% (Figures 3.28.2, 3.28.3 and 3.28.4). Arable farming dominates the agricultural sector, accounting for about 75% of output value, with the value share of fruit and vegetables over 40% [3].

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