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The Vertical Farm: Feeding the World in the 21st Century


Ideally, vertical farms should be cheap to build, modular, durable, easily maintained, and safe to operate

By Dr. Dickson Despommier
Thomas Dunne Books
October 12, 2010
320 pages, plus four 8-page color photo inserts

When Columbia professor Dickson Despommier set out to solve America’s food, water, and energy crises, he didn’t just think big – he thought up. Despommier’s stroke of genius, The Vertical Farm, has excited scientists, architects, and politicians around the globe.

These farms, grown inside skyscrapers, would provide solutions to many of the serious problems we currently face, including: allowing year-round crop production; providing food to areas currently lacking arable land; immunity to weather-related crop failure; re-use of water collected by de-humidification of the indoor environment; new employment opportunities; no use of pesticides, fertilizers, or herbicides;

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October 6, 2010   3 Comments

Calgary mayoral candidate is constitutionally challenging city ban on urban chickens

Photograph by: Brett Gundlock/National Post, NP

“I am 111 per cent guilty of possession of chickens”

By Daryl Slade
Calgary Herald
September 16, 2010


Mayoral candidate and urban chicken advocate Paul Hughes has officially made his constitutional challenge to the city’s bylaw banning backyard egg-laying hens.

Hughes filed his document, under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, following a pre-trial conference at provincial court on Wednesday.

“The city does not have the jurisdiction to regulate activity pertaining to household food security, in this case exemplified by backyard chickens,” Hughes wrote as his primary ground for the challenge.

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October 6, 2010   2 Comments

Strathcona Community Micro-Gardens in Vancouver

Needs funding to build dozens of micro gardens throughout the Strathcona neighbourhood and help turn this into the heart of the greenest city


We propose to create 20 to 30 community micro-gardens throughout the Strathcona neighbourhood. The gardens would be installed on private properties adjacent to public spaces in highly visible, underutilized areas.

Depending on the nature and size of each location, the gardeners and the property owners would decide whether the plot should be a community garden, single-owner garden, or a living wall. Vegetation would consist of native perennials and edible plants.

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October 6, 2010   1 Comment

The City of Vancouver asked residents “Do you grow any food in your yard?

Survey question as part of larger study on backyard composting and grasscycling

By Mustel Group Market Research
for the City of Vancouver
May 2007

The City of Vancouver population is 630,000. Greater Vancouver, which comprise 22 member municipalities and one electoral area, has a population of over 2 million.

Do you grow any food in your yard?

1. About half of the target residents grow food in their yard.

2. Not surprisingly, those living in single detached dwellings are much more likely to grow food in their yard than duplex/townhouse dwellers (53% vs. 35%).

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October 6, 2010   Comments Off on The City of Vancouver asked residents “Do you grow any food in your yard?

Music video features making a community garden in Detroit – Triumph over Adversity

Music videos celebrate urban agriculture – On a Good Day (Metropolis) by Above, Beyond & Gareth Emery

Beautiful videos! Mike
1. Above & Beyond pres. OceanLab – On A Good Day (Above & Beyond Acoustic Mix) (pre-order on iTunes now)

“We all read about the Detroit Urban Farms project and saw the documentaries about it and it really moved us all. To see a community reclaiming the crumbling city blocks to grow the food they need is an incredible story in so many ways. It was moving, topical and also a beautiful and apt illustration of what the song is actually about – triumph over adversity. As a video concept, it was perfect from angles.” – Above & Beyond’s Tony McGuinness

See the longer video about making this video on the next page. Interviews.

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October 6, 2010   Comments Off on Music video features making a community garden in Detroit – Triumph over Adversity