004 - Global Shift of Industry

Geographic Knowledge and Understanding

Environmental issues linked with the global shift of industry:

- Polluting manufacturing industries

- Food production systems for global agribusiness


The processes associated with the global shift of industry can create environmental risks for particular places.


  • To have knowledge and understanding of the environmental issues linked with the global shift of industry focusing upon polluting manufacturing industries and food production systems for global agribusiness.

Key Terminology

            • Agribusiness

            • Ruminant

Define the key terms above by using the 'Useful Links' below:

Useful Links

Activity One - Global Agribusiness - Comprehension

We are going to start off by looking at the changes that agriculture has gone through due to our increasing demand for goods. We now farm on a much larger scale and we can reach resources in more remote places. The increasing global flows between places mean that farmed goods no longer stay in the country of origin but are shipped across the world to meet the demands of the consumer. Certain farmed goods such as palm oil are in many goods that we use every day without us being aware of it. It could be in your food, make-up, packaging or fuel and we often consume it thinking that a natural product is more sustainable. Answer the following questions using the YouTube clips and articles in the 'Useful Resources' below:

      1. Describe the effects that agro-industrialisation has had on dairy farming.

      2. What are the key characteristics of agro-business?

      3. From what you have studied so far where do you think that agro-business is prevalent?

      4. How has agro-industrialisation impacted international production and consumption?

      5. What impact has this production had on the environment? Consider the following areas:

                  • Eutrophication (also explored in Freshwater)

                  • Biodiversity loss

                  • Forest services loss

                  • Water scarcity (also explored in Freshwater

      6. What is palm oil?

      7. What are the environmental implications of using palm oil?

      8. How can the shift in use of palm oil create further risks to the environment?


Palm Oil

Palm Oil - Kitkat and GreenPeace

Activity Two - Polluting Manufacturing Industries - Comprehension

The second part of the syllabus point asks us to look at how manufacturing industries can impact the environment. As I am sure you are all aware by now I do like to shop and I seem to have collated quite a plethora of jeans for all seasons and occasions! What I have never considered before is the impact the production of favourite pair of jeans may have on the environment. We are going to focus on China as they have come to be known as the denim capital of the world. Answer the following questions using the YouTube clips and articles in the 'Useful Resources' box below. The second YouTube clip is very long and therefore I would recommend that you watch this at home to 'flesh' out your answers.

      1. Why has there been a global shift in the location of manufacturing industries?

      2. Outline the pollution caused by the manufacturing of denim jeans in China?

      3. What is China doing to reduce its impact on the environment?

      4. Why would China want to look like they are reducing their impact on the environment?

Exam Style Question

Using examples, analyse how the global shift of different industries affects the environment. [12 marks]

This lesson was development in collaboration with Richard Allaway from geographyalltheway. For more resources please visit www.geographyalltheway.com