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Few people know this, but the farming industry is in a state of transition. Tougher demands are getting placed on farmers to produce more food and drink for human consumption. As the world’s population grows, there is a greater emphasis on the resources that farms supply.

Technology is lending a helping hand to today’s tech-savvy farmers in more ways than one. Even if a farmer is lucky enough to have the money to hire an army of people, there will still be a need to improve efficiency and production.

Sheeps in farm

Image by John Spivey

The Consumer Electronics Show in Nevada is home to new product developments by a plethora of companies. But did you know that many of today’s technology first shown in events like that get used by the farming industry? Here are a few examples to show you just how tech-centric today’s farmers are:

Robots

If you’ve got visions of the robots shown in cartoon programs like The Jetsons, you are on the right tracks! Believe it or not, the use of robotics in the farming industry is growing in popularity.

Dairy farmers have used robotic milking machines for cows since the early 1990s. Technology has come a long way since then. Today’s “milking parlours” allow cows to decide when they wish to be milked and how. They also monitor the quality of the milk produced so that farmers can keep a closer eye on cows that may have problems.

Such systems also allow farmers to maintain a look on how cows are feeding. Sometimes cows may not produce enough milk because they aren’t feeding well. Technology helps dairy producers to gain a valuable insight into milk production at their farms.

There are several other reasons why robots are preferred on dairy farms across the globe. First, there’s the efficiency aspect. If cows are calmer, they produce better quality of milk. Many farmers new to robotic “milkers” note that their yield increases by at least 10% in just four months.

Robots can also help in other ways too. “Feed pushers” ensure that all cows enjoy eating high-quality food at a location to suit them. Farmers can even buy robot cleaners to clean the shed where the milking parlour is set up! Such measures ensure that farmers can dedicate their time to other areas.

Drones

The use of pilotless aircraft, drones, is increasing each day. Some people fly drones for leisure purposes. While others may do so for more sinister reasons, such as espionage! But drones play an important part in the management of farms in the 21st century.

When you operate a farm, you are dealing with a significant size of land. It is seldom easy to manage such land by yourself or with one or two other people. As a farmer, part of your job is to make sure that your livestock are safe and secure from natural predators like foxes. And enterprising criminals that want to steal your farm animals and sell them on the black market.

It’s a full-time job in itself walking or driving on your land. Especially if you have to deal with incidents such as livestock going astray! Technology’s contribution to the management of farms are drones, believe it or not.

These pilotless aircraft can get operated from a fair distance, such as in the farmer’s home. Farmers can use drones to survey the land for various reasons like finding missing sheep or checking for damage to fences.

Drones can get fitted with high-definition cameras, and those cameras can get accessed wirelessly. That means when the drones get operated, real-time video footage can get seen from the system running them.

Drone

Many farmers use drones that are controlled by mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. That means they can control where they get flown while they are working in and around the farm.

Let me give you a personal, real-life example. On a recent visit to a friend’s farm, he showed me the tractor that he bought through the http://farm.autotrader.co.uk website. He had a special mount fitted in the cab for his iPad so that he can control his drone when he’s working out on the fields.

The drone allows him to check for any areas that require his attention so that he can be sure all of his fields are ploughed correctly.

Telematics

On today’s modern cars, many of them have telematics boxes for insurance purposes. In a nutshell, they are GPS devices that keep track of where cars go, at what times and how fast they drive.

Telematics also have a place in today’s modern farm. Of course, farmers don’t spend their days racing cars around their fields. At least, not the ones that I know! The thing about telematics is that they are useful for keeping tabs on farm animals.

Sheep, cows, in fact, any farm animals you care to name. They can get fitted with small GPS devices so that you know where they all are at any one time. As you can appreciate, some farmers have thousands of animals.

The growing threat of livestock theft is a common problem for today’s modern farmers. They can invest in an array of security measures. But the sad truth is that they don’t always prevent theft. With telematics, farmers can learn if there are any thefts imminent. That’s because they have to power to check the location of their livestock at any time.

If their animals are somewhere on fields they seldom visit, it’s a good indicator that something is amiss.

Three-dimensional monitoring

Last, but not least, farmers can also fit monitoring devices to their livestock. These micro-sized gadgets can get farmers an insight into the health of their animals. Examples include pedometers to measure how often animals walk, run or graze each day.

Rumination microphones are also a good indicator of how often cows spend cudding. If there are any significant rises or dips, farmers can check the animal’s health and act upon any problems sooner rather than later.

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Environment

Saving the Planet? It Is a Local Issue

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When we get caught up in common environmental issues, we start to think that it’s a bigger problem, that is down to centralised areas and big cities. And while urban areas are expanding, the route to sustainability as a solution comes from an approach beyond urbanism. Because urban areas bear the brunt because they have more CO2 emissions and larger carbon footprints, the thing to note in this respect that saving the planet is not necessarily a large-scale issue. In fact, it is a local issue. 

teamwork motivation

The largest cities require urban developments, and this is a part of modern life. But when we go back to the 1990s, when sustainable city initiatives began emerging, we can see where the argument for the compact city began. This can have a positive impact on sustainability in a variety of ways but also improves greenhouse gas emissions. But this is where smaller communities can become invaluable. 

Smaller communities have more power in many respects. From the perspective of local councils, it can be easier to incorporate an initiative that benefits the community, rather than having to go all the way to Westminster. Now, it can be easier to sign up for a local initiative, such as a solar community, rather than having to get permission from a higher power. And from the perspective of a community, it is far more controllable.

Saving the planet in an urban sense is about changing the infrastructure, which can take years, if not decades. However, smaller communities are able to utilise the location for the benefit of their immediate surroundings. This is something very important to note. Whenever you want to make a significant impact, be it in charity, or in the environment, it starts at home. As saving the planet is a local issue in this respect, it’s far easier to communicate the message. Smaller communities are in close contact. This means the message is easily spread. Throw into the mix community meetings, and how businesses look to develop on local issues, rather than spearheading initiatives overseas or in big cities, and it provides a tactical methodology to help on a small scale. 

When you combine this with the fact that smaller organisations such as schools, naturally have a lower carbon footprint, this is the perfect opportunity to teach the younger generations how they can positively impact the world. Saving the planet is a local issue. We have to remember that if we are to make any impact, we have to look after our own. That’s not to say that we shouldn’t rely on large organisations or big cities to do the job, but if you want to do something right, do it yourself. 

Saving the planet is something that we can control from our own home. From the practices that we preach to the examples we set, saving the planet is about keeping it close to home before you start to spread yourself far and wide. If every small town started to look after its own carbon emissions, this would pay for the country, and the world, several times over.

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Environment

Integrating Waste Management To Improve Business Productivity

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recycle reuse

Recently, governments have increased their incentives on business to employ environmentally friendly methods in their production lines. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that businesses are working round the clock to ensure that they adhere to the regulations.

Business waste management requires a collective effort from all the stakeholders. The employees and customers need to be sensitized on the importance of environmentally friendly practices to boost their eco-performance. 

Reduce Wastage

Production in business usually has many wastes ranging from energy wastage, residues, or solid wastes. You need to assess your production plan from purchasing, production, documentation, and packaging. Once you have assessed, identify the key areas that you can work on to minimize usage and wastage.

Packaging

It would be best if you considered using biodegradable packaging materials that will reduce paper wastage. There are packaging materials that you can use that will help you cut on paper and plastic wastage. You can also choose to bulk purchase of materials needed to reduce the amount of packaging paper you will have.

Electrical Systems

In the past, electrical wires were manufactured using cloth wires to enhance insulation, longevity, and safety in the workplace. You easily damage the wires during daily production activities, and its disposal could create large volumes of unnecessary plastics. 

Though you can recycle these wastes, the costs incurred compared to the systems’ service is a loss to the business. However, this industrial practice has been discontinued and restructured to alternative uses due to technological advancements.

Energy Sources

Using Renewable Energy Sources also plays a significant role in reducing energy wastage. There will be fewer emissions into the environment, and you will also reduce the energy costs you use. The employees need to be sensitized on efficient energy management practices like switching off machines and lights that are not in use, proper usage of specific equipment, and immediate repair and service of machines once they break down.

Building and Construction

Contractors involved in building and construction have included energy and environmental management in their practice. Several businesses have taken the liberty to redesign the buildings to use efficient energy sources and recycled materials. This development is a step in the right direction of environmental management.

Solid Wastes 

The wastes in the business need to be properly disposed of to observe hygiene and cleanliness. Poor garbage disposal techniques will endanger the health of the employees and the immediate community.

It would help if you employed recycling techniques like water treatment plants in the industry to reduce the toxicity of the waste. The types of strainers, baskets, and traps used in the water treatment plant play a significant role in the quality of the process equipment.

To ascertain the water treatment plant’s quality, you need to take a keen interest in the types of weaving employed in its manufacture. Be sure to investigate if the weaving matches your purpose of the plant and your content of waste. 

Waste management is a gradual process that has its profitable returns. It helps you to cut down on some costs and increases productivity. 

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Environment

How To Save Water At Work

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When you’re at home, you know how to save water and do better for your house. Living in a green way is easy at home, but what about at work? When you are not the owner of a business premises, it’s not always easy to be green. However, there are things that you can do as a business that will ensure that you are analyzing your water efficiency and you can then reduce the water use in your workplace.

Below, we’ve put together some of the best ways that you can conserve water in your workplace. You can continue your green efforts in the workplace this way!

Get Your Management Team On Your Side

If you are planning to start water conservation efforts at work, you need the rest of your management team on your side. They need to be happy to work with you and ensure that your water conservation efforts are successful. If you’re working as one team, you’re far more likely to save the planet a little aggravation and you can successfully prevent flooding, too.

Research 

You need to know the best ways to conserve water, and we’re willing to bet that you haven’t looked at whether you can get permission from your landlord about installing water tanks from  watertankfactory.com.au/water-tanks-dalby/. You need to research what you can and cannot do in terms of saving water in any way possible. 

Put Together A List

You need to know why you are saving water and what it will be for. Filtering rainwater for free, drinkable water in the office is a genius way to keep employees cool. You can also use it for the external garden of your business, as a way to flush the toilets and you can also use it to clean the floors. 

Know How You Already Use Your Water

How does your business consume water? Where is it mostly used through the working week? If you can ensure that you are using your water properly, you will be able to encourage your staff to do the same thing. Conservation only works when everyone is on board!

Bring In The Experts

Do you have leaky faucets? Are you dealing with pipes that are broken or cracked in any way? Any of these things can cause your water payments to shoot right up. Bringing in the experts to assess your current water systems and evaluate your pipework is the best way to ensure that you are saving water. You can stop the waste when you have someone in to assess what you are dealing with.

Save It

By buying rainwater tanks and saving the rainfall, you can use less of the water from the faucets and the pipes in the building. You can add a good filtration system and this will help you to get rid of the nasties in the water and reduce the contaminants that you could be facing.

Water conservation is not just for your house. And now you know how to get it right!

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