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teachersage eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Green Revolution was a scientific revolution in growing grains. It implemented the use of genetic engineering, chemical fertilizers, and pesticides, and it introduced more technology (more sophisticated plows and so on) into farming. According to our understanding of the word "green," which we typically use to connote organic and ecologically sound farming practices, the Green Revolution was not "green" at all—it was highly invasive. The "green" in this instance refers to a revolution in vastly increasing the supply of green or growing things.

The Green Revolution reached its fulfillment in the late 1960s. Although not "green" by our standards, it was highly beneficial for the world: for the first time, the earth could reliably feed all its people. Problems of starvation no longer would have to do with the world being unable to produce enough food: they would simply be the result of political situations in which food and water sources to certain populations were cut off.

This may not seem that important, as many of us grew up without having to face the prospect of famine, but this is actually an enormously significant development. Up until the second half of the twentieth century, recurrent famines in different parts of the world were a fact of life. Starvation was a reality. Even in normal times, when there was no famine, poor crop yields routinely led to hunger. While we do have hunger and food insecurity even in the wealthiest countries today, this is nothing like what people used to face.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Since you have placed this in the Social Sciences group, I assume that you want a discussion of the social impact of the Green Revolution.

The impact of the Green Revolution on society can best be seen in the fact that the man most closely connected with it (Norman Borlaug) won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1970.  That is how important this revolution was.

By coming up with new varieties of grains, the Green Revolution changed society in many developing countries.  Before the Revolution, famine was fairly common and 56% of the world's population lived on diets that were barely sufficient (this stat in the food-encyclopedia link).  Many feared that the world's population was getting too large and that there would soon be insufficient food for everyone.

The Green Revolution solved this problem.  By doing so, it ensured a better standard of living for billions of people.  In addition, it helped there to be enough food so that conflict between peoples for scarce food did not end up being a major problem.