Author

Anne M. Paz

Date of Award

8-2015

Document Type

Capstone-Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Program Name

Environmental Policy and Management

Capstone Instructor

Dr. Elizabeth D'Andrea

Abstract

This research focuses on Arizona’s top agriculture commodities in order to better understand the environmental impact of agriculture in Arizona compared to the rest of the United States. A single state agriculture analysis allows for a tailored approach to sustainable agriculture research. This type of approach is important, because each state has a unique agriculture climate with many different characteristics of production. The first phase of this research determines the top agriculture crop and livestock commodities in Arizona and compares them to the United States. An agriculture footprint is calculated using this information, which highlights the areas where Arizona has the largest impact within the United States. The production methods of the items with the largest agriculture footprint are then analyzed in order to determine the specific environmental impacts associated with producing these top commodities. The final phase of the research will include an analysis of the production methods determined in the second phase of research with current information on sustainability. This will allow for a determination of Arizona’s agriculture sustainability and where they could possibly improve in order to protect the environment.

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