Gimme Green: The American Obsession with Lawns (2007)

Gimme Green is a humorous look at the American obsession with the residential lawn and the effects it has on our environment, our wallets and our outlook on life. From the limitless subdivisions of Florida to sod farms in the arid southwest, Gimme Green peers behind the curtain of the $40-billion industry that fuels our nation’s largest irrigated crop-the lawn.”

Some facts from the video:

* Every day more than 5,000 acres of land are converted into lawns in America.
* Lawns cover more than 41 million acres, the most irrigated crop in the U.S.
* Americans apply over 30,000 tons of pesticides to their yards every year.
* Of the 30 most used lawn pesticides, 17 are routinely detected in groundwater.
* The National Cancer Institute finds that children in households using lawn pesticides have a 6.5 times greater risk of developing leukemia.
* American lawns require 200 gallons of fresh water per person per day.
(via Films for Action)

China Has 8 Million Acres of Land That Are Now Too Polluted to Grow Food On

via Earth First Journal:

For as much news as China’s smog situation makes, another large problem has lagged in attention—the pollution of 8 million acres of farmland across the country.

The land is far too polluted with heavy metals and chemicals that it can’t be used to grow food, Wang Shiyuan, deputy minister of China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection said Monday.

The Ministry found “moderate to severe pollution” on 3.3 million hectares (8.3 million acres) of land, according to Huffington Post. The country needs at least 120 million hectares of arable land to meet the large population’s needs. The nation began the year with 135 million hectares of arable land, but contamination and efforts to convert farmland to forests, grasslands and wetlands dropped that amount to 120 million hectares, ThinkProgress reported.

“These areas cannot continue farming,” Wang said.

Read full article: “China Has 8 Million Acres of Land That Are Now Too Polluted to Grow Food On