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Vertical farming: Does it really stack up?

Vertical farming: Does it really stack up?
WHEN you run out of land in a crowded city, the solution is obvious: build upwards. This simple trick makes it possible to pack huge numbers of homes and offices into a limited space such as Hong Kong, Manhattan or the City of London. Mankind now faces a similar problem on a global scale. The world's population is expected to increase to 9.1 billion by 2050, according to the UN. Such is the thinking behind vertical farming. Better still, says Dr Despommier, the use of pesticides, herbicides and fungicides can be kept to a bare minimum by growing plants indoors in a controlled environment. A wide variety of designs for vertical farms have been created by architectural firms. “Without artificial lighting the result will be an uneven crop, as plants closest to the windows are exposed to more sunlight and grow more quickly.” The necessary technology already exists. He and his colleagues have created the South Pole Food Growth Chamber, which has been in operation since 2004. Related:  Vertical farms

WHAT IS VERTICAL FARMING?WHAT IS HYDROPONICS?WHAT ARE MICRO NUTRIENTS?ADVANTAGES OF VERTICAL FARMING? FOR PRELIMS AND MAINS GS PAP III | THE FORTUNE STROKE Ø Yes it's vertical because you are trying to grow more crops on a smaller land area and this usually means going upwards into buildings Ø It normally means that, instead of having a single layer of crops over a large land area, you have stacks of crops going upwards Ø It's also associated with city farming and urban farming Ø Who is "Dickson Despommier"? Ø Who is William Frederick Gericke? Ø Dickson Despommier, Columbia Microbiology Professor, is the Godfather of Vertical Farming Ø William Frederick Gericke, in the early 1930’s, pioneered hydroponics at the University of California at Berkley NB: Will read more about it WHY IS IT HAPPENING? Ø By the year 2050, nearly 80% of the earth’s population will reside in urban centers Ø Applying the most conservative estimates to current demographic trends, the human population will increase by about 3 billion people during the interim Ø At present, throughout the world, over 80% of the land that is suitable for raising crops is in use No not at all..!!

New printer produces 3D objects on demand Imagine a machine which accepts CAD drawings, then produces a three dimensional prototype within a few hours for $100 - it now exists. The successful implementation of the technology points the way to this technology eventually finding its way into local bureau which produce while-you-wait samples as a service, and eventually to the home where designs could be downloaded from the internet and manifested at whim. View all Z Corporation now has several models of 3D printers that produce physical prototypes quickly, easily, and inexpensively from computer-aided design (CAD) and other digital data. In the same way that conventional desktop printers provide computer users with a paper output of their documents, 3D printers provide 3D CAD users a physical prototype of real world objects such as a mobile phone, an engine manifold, or a camera. The ZPrinter System completes the product line, which includes the Z406 Full Color 3D Printer and the Z810 Large Format 3D Printer.

Can Urban Farming Go Corporate? Farms have sprouted in cities across the country over the past several years as activists and idealists pour their sweat into gritty soil. Now Paul Lightfoot wants to take urban agriculture beyond the dirt-under-your-nails labor of love. He wants to take it corporate. In June, Lightfoot's company, BrightFarms, announced a deal with The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Co., or A&P, to provide New York City-grown vegetables to the local chain's supermarkets year-round. The goods will grow in what the company says will be the country's largest rooftop greenhouse farm, a high-tech hydroponic operation that will boost yields, allowing the company to face-off with organic vegetables trucked from California, cutting thousands of miles from the supply chain while aiming to provide a fresher product at a competitive price. With similar deals announced for St. "We're not trying to change the fringes of the supply chain," he said. If that sounds too good to be true, it may be.

Think global, eat local | Washington Business Journal Missy Frederick Reporter Email In this week's paper, we took a look at the National Restaurant Association's 2011 predicted trends for restaurants, how D.C. stacks up and what local chefs see coming up next year. "D.C. is definitely ahead of the curve on the local and sustainable trend," said Amanda McClements, author of the popular food blog Metrocurean. Some chefs have converted more to the local movement in recent years. "It just became really advantageous, both on the quality level and in terms of better pricing," said Gold. Customers have responded, selling out events such as Dino’s themed duck dinner, which featured ducks from Joe Jurgielewicz’s Pennsylvania Farm. Alexandria-based Neighborhood Restaurant Group took its commitment to local sourcing a step further this year, when President Michael Babin founded his nonprofit Arcadia Center for Sustainable Food and Agriculture, which runs a farm that will supply products to his restaurants beginning next year.

Can Cities Feed Their Inhabitants? David Thorpe looks at the options A greenhouse developed by Priva, an international company that provides innovative solutions for the more efficient control of energy and water within indoor environments. There are three dominant trends to which cities and national governments must respond in order to secure food supplies for their people. First, between 1980 and 2011 the global population not dependent on agriculture doubled to 4.4 billion, and, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization this population is growing at a rate about five times that of the agriculturally dependent population. Second, the amount of agricultural land available for growing food is declining and will soon start to be adversely affected by climate change. Third, in 2011 agricultural subsidies in the world’s top 21 food-producing countries totalled an estimated US$486bn. The growing of food in cities won’t mean that conventional agriculture will disappear. His personal website is:

T-box concept to capture wind energy from trains The T-box concept would be installed between railway sleepers, and would harness the wind of passing trains to generate electricity (All images courtesy of Qian Jiang) Image Gallery (9 images) As anyone living near railway tracks will tell you, speeding trains generate quite a bit of wind as they whoosh past. Industrial designers Qian Jiang and Alessandro Leonetti Luparini have come up with a device that's installed between the sleepers on a track, and as the train passes overhead, the wind drives a turbine to generate electricity. The T-box devices could be placed along railway or subway lines, and make good use of an otherwise wasted resource. View all Unlike innovations such as the Solar Roadways project and Solar Wind concept, the T-box device wouldn't have to depend on a natural energy source, but instead one that is produced as a consequence of human activity. Of course, keeping these babies clean and safe could be a problem. Via Yanko About the Author Post a CommentRelated Articles

Sky Farm by Gordon Graff | The Rathaus For our second installment of six architectural projects dedicated to vertical farming, renewable energies, and the construction of a better, greener 21st century, s.a.johnson discusses the Sky Farm project by Gordon Graff. While a Masters of Architecture student at Waterloo University, Gordon Graff developed the concept for a 58-story agricultural tower called the Sky Farm. Its 8 million square feet of growing area, equal to over 180 acres, has the potential to provide enough food for 35,000 citizens per year. Because of the building’s large floor plates plants will be grown primarily with artificial lighting which in turn uses nearly 82 million kilowatts of power per year, equivalent to 8,000 households. However, about 50% of this need will be supplanted by burning the large amounts of methane found in plant waste which produces much less carbon dioxide than other fuels, making it a cleaner option.

World Food Day: There is enough food grown in the world for everyone (Op-ed) “The problem of hunger and poverty in a climate-changing world will not be solved simply by throwing more money at fertilizer, higher-yielding seeds and big irrigation schemes.” Jeremy Hobbs Oxfam International Executive Director Published: 16 October 2009 There is enough food grown in the world for everyone. Next month at the UN World Food Summit in Rome they will talk about ending world hunger. To do so, leaders must concentrate on helping poor farmers who have been left to fend for themselves on the front-line of hunger, poverty and climate change. All countries must invest more in small-scale agriculture, particularly to women who play a vital role in food security, yet who have less access to land and services and tend to lack political voice. This year’s G8 summit pledged $20 billion over three years to poor farmers and consumers. Meanwhile, climate change is already causing massive shifts in seasonal growing patterns, especially in the tropics where most poor people live and farm.

FarmedHere Wysips technology can turn any surface into a PV power plant Wafer thin and flexible - Wysips film technology allows light to pass through a semi-cylindrical lens onto thin strips of photovoltaic cells below, while also allowing the surface underneath to show through Image Gallery (4 images) Mobile phones sporting photovoltaic panels are nothing new but thanks to some lens wizardry, a French company recently showed off a prototype phone where the touchscreen display itself housed the solar-soaking cells. Similar to the lenticular optics which sends slightly different images to each eye for glasses-free 3D viewing, Wysips technology allows light to pass through a semi-cylindrical lens onto thin strips of photovoltaic cells below, while also allowing the surface underneath to show through. The developers say that many surfaces could potentially become self-sufficient power producers. The idea for Wysips is said to have been inspired by the holographic process used on book covers, where the image changes depending on the viewing angle.

Incorporating Urban Agriculture into Urban Planning: The Tale of Three Cities A comparative study: Urban Agriculture in Vancouver, Dar es Salaam and Copenhagen Independent Study by Afton Halloran University of Copenhagen Faculty of Life Science Jan 21, 2011 Abstract Although generally thought of as a livelihood strategy for the urban poor in developing countries, urban agriculture is prevalent in both the global South and North. Urban agriculture has been heralded for its environmental, social and economic benefits. However, in some cities it is an unrecognized practice and some typologies of urban agriculture are even treated as illegal. Urban planning has an important influence in determining the structure of a city. This paper explores the influence of urban planning structures on the development of urban agriculture within three cities: Copenhagen, Denmark; Vancouver, Canada; and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. 9. With increased urbanization and global food insecurity on the rise cities around the world are looking for solutions. Read the complete study here.(2.4MB)

Snow lessons for supermarkets | Tim Lang Britain is having a prolonged and unusual period of bad weather. Suddenly even the oiled machines of the supermarket chains seem threatened, with reports that shoppers may soon face empty shelves. How has this happened? Why does a little snow – compared with what Norway or Canada routinely get – have this potential to disrupt modern lives and our insatiable desire to eat all the time? Though empty shelves are not a reality yet, it's obvious that if motorways are halted, the one in four vehicles on British roads that carry food are bound to be affected. The supermarket revolution was one of the much-hyped success stories of 20th-century consumer capitalism. But behind all this lies something that 21st-century managers, politicians and consumers will almost certainly have to change. Modern supermarkets work by precision timing. The supermarkets have applied just-in-time management and logistics systems, an approach perfected by Toyota for car assembly.