Economic and Environmental Sustainability of Factory Farming in the US

by Marcus Breitenstein

Institution: Roskilde University
Year: 2015
Keywords: Sustainability; Factory Farming
Record ID: 1122090
Full text PDF: http://rudar.ruc.dk/handle/1800/17917


This paper is written with the purpose of looking into sustainable development. More specifically, it will look at the relationship between the environmental and economical pillars of sustainability. In order for sustainable development to take place, the economy must be growing while maintaining earth’s natural resources. Factory farming might be strong from an economic point of view, but it does not seem to be environmentally friendly. Therefore we used factory farming as an example of an industry to discuss the theory of Natural Capitalism and the principles within the Rio Declaration in relation to the economic and environmental pillars of sustainability. We found that the economic and environmental pillars are presented as strongly interconnected by both Natural Capitalism strategies and the Rio principles. By using content analysis we found many similarities between the two views of the environmental and economic pillars. Factory farming also showed that the link between environment and economics is strong. Because factory farming is in many aspects unsustainable both from an economic and environmental point of view, we can could conclude that the unsustainability of both pillars might be due to their interconnectedness.