World population, per capita income and the demand for
food are on the rise. Alberta's geographical location allows good access to a
host of consumers: eight million in western Canada, 50 million in the western
United States and millions in the Pacific Rim market. The North American
Free Trade Agreement and negotiations in the Pacific Rim are helping provide
further access to these markets.
Alberta's vision for the agriculture industry over the
next ten years includes a doubling of the primary sector to a $10 billion
industry and a quadrupling of the processing sector to a $20 billion industry.
Expansion and intensification of agriculture in Alberta may place additional
pressures on the terrestrial ecosystem. Industry and environmental organizations
in Alberta agree that there is a need to ensure that this expansion takes place in an
environmentally suitable manner based on the best scientific information
Department of the Environment. State of the Environment Report, Terrestrial Ecosystems. Edmonton: n.p., 2001. With permission from Alberta Environment.