Saturday, April 17, 2010

getting high

from here

A United Nations demographic study predicts that by the year 2050 three billion more people will have added to our current population of six billion. 80% of available arable land is already in use; the remaining 20% will clearly be insufficient to feed an additional three billion mouths. Consequences of changing weather patterns, such as rising sea levels and accelerated desertification, will only take away more potential farmland.In addition there is the currently increasing trend of people moving into the cities. An issue with urban areas is that virtually all food has to be grown elsewhere and transported in. Adding three billion more city residents will overstrain the dependence on arable land that has already been statistically proven to be inadequate and waning in sustainability. Consequently, shifting the center of food production to where most people will be living is more efficient. Building upwards rather than outwards minimizes the usage of scarce urban space.

In order to provide water for the crops, a vertical farm will be able to recycle municipal wastewater by filtration and collect rainwater. Dehumidifying the inside air recollects water from plant-produced moisture which can distribute as much as 60 million gallons of bottled water each year. With respect to energy consumption, solar panels and wind spires power the heating and lighting for each floor. Additional energy needs can be met with a 50% efficient process called plasma-gasification, which combusts any waste food product, such as the leaves and stalks from corn. Lastly, nitrogen and other fertile nutrients can be derived from animal waste or the city sewage water.The immediate benefit of growing food indoors is an environment that can be controlled all day and year-round. Temperature, humidity, and lighting can all be customized for specific crops, yielding optimal growth. Year-round harvests will certainly help curb global hunger.Construct about 150 of these vertical farms and everybody in New York City will have fresh produce to eat.For instance, twenty-one stories can be as efficient as 588 acres with respect to lettuce production.

Vertical farming makes the city its own provider of fresh produce. Food no longer needs to be shipped in, saving fossil fuel emissions and transportation costs. Also, schools, restaurants, and hospitals in cities will readily have access to fresh fruits and vegetables

The solutions exist but it will require socialism to implement them

1 comment:

Shaun LC said...

I have wondered why we should be concerned about having to feed 9 billion people, and whether it should be of concern to an individual person whether or not there is sufficient food for all inhabitants of the earth. Let the market operate and allow people to starve, if necessary. The planet may be better off with fewer people.