Despite the vastly modernized and complex world we live in today, the human individual remains just as primitive as for the past thousands of years. Still, a human needs only food and water to survive and last in this world. Though with rapid commercialization of commodities and an disproportionately surging population, the supply of these two essentials to life are quickly diminishing.
As the world rapidly develops, the continent of Africa continuously finds itself unable to overcome decades of colonial subordination, outdated tribal segregation, persistent civil wars, and resulting famines and poverty on a massive scale. The continent has unfortunately become synonymous with poverty, hunger, famine, and war. Even though considerable effort is being put into investing in and developing Africa, there has been little evidence of returns on the investment. Because African politics and economics are so unstable, communities have been deprived of even the essentials to life, resulting in widespread hunger, malnutrition, and unchecked deaths.
In contrast, the US has clearly established it as the most efficient farming state in the world. With about 330 million people compared to Africa’s 1.26 billion, it is organization, not manpower that has proven to be the key to uplifting an entire industry. Because of the corporate organization of American agriculture, production has risen to the point where the country is self-sustainable and on top of that, the nation is by far and away the largest exporter of food and agricultural produce.
The responsibility that this achievement brings is not without its struggles. Being the largest agricultural exporter means that the largest number of people on a global scale are dependent on your production to survive. This position of power adds to the great influence that America already has on a global scale. Canada, China, Mexico, Europe, and Japan are the major importers of American agriculture, finding themselves in one way or another dependent on the US. Although, it is recognized that Canada and likely also Mexico have the potential to support the entirety of their agricultural demands domestically, but have divided their markets in favour of building trade relations with the United States.
Agricultural potential plays an underlying role in national security, as it is a safeguard which reinforces population growth and stability. Societies progress over time from primitive and tribal states and grow into democratically functioning communities with domestic stability and foreign relations. The driving factor in pushing this transition is domestic stability which is achieved through agricultural and freshwater sustainability. Throughout history, nations have collapsed at the exact point where food and water shortages pressured ruling powers into dissolution. However, nations have been constructed on the very simple foundation of supplying food and water to a domestic population in a sustainable manner.
Freshwater supply and transport has been talked about as an increasingly important commodity which may induce conflict in the future. Canada, Brazil, Russia, and the US lead the world in freshwater resources, but with an increasing global population, water resources have become a tense topic with regards to the future. Even in the face of controversy, a host of multinational corporations are actively exhausting the Great Lakes’ supply for bottling and wide-scale distribution. Namely, Nestlé has come under fire in Ontario and Michigan for its unwelcome exploitation and harm inflicted on the local waterbed.
With the competing interests of both the Canadian and American governments, multinational corporations, local farmers, and environmental interest groups, the Great Lakes seem to exhibit a spark that may very well boil into conflict if demands continue to rise. Accounting for over 20% of global freshwater, the Great Lakes are a point of interest for every individual on Earth, for which Canada and the US share a vested interest as well as responsibility.
In any case, it has become clear that the a civil and democratic future can only be ensured by sustaining food and water availability for all individuals. Especially in North America, civility is central to maintaining a decisive role in global governance and policy making. In order to move peacefully into the future, corporate and government cooperation must achieve a sustainable degree of agricultural and freshwater development and availability in accommodation of growing demand. Global security depends directly on the degree of food and water security that nations can provide for individuals.