The Urban Century "In 1950, one-third of the world’s people lived in cities. Just 50 years later, this proportion has risen to one-half and will continue to grow to two-thirds, or six billion people, by 2050. Cities are now home to half of humankind. " UN-Habitat
This trend is equivalent to adding a city of one million residents every week (UN-HABITAT 2004).
Urban Agriculture What is it?
USDA Definition of UA
“ To establish and perform an agricultural practice in or near an urban or city-like setting.”
A key part of a holistic solution to the problems associated with the growth of cities
An enhancer of quality of life
Tapping Resources Generating Products
In the US
Resource recycling and conservation
Therapy and recreation
Education, nutrition and safe food provision
Green architecture and open space management.
In Poorer Countries
Individual Food Security, a Means for Survival
In many African cities, it is common for families to eat just one meal a day. Malnutrition and related health issues are commonplace. Little wonder, then, that increasing numbers of people look for ways to supplement the meager amounts of food that they can afford to buy.
The UNDP estimates perhaps as many as 800 million urban farmers produce about 15% of the world's food.
Where is it?
There is crop and animal production on rooftops, in window boxes, on roadsides, beside railroads, beneath high tension lines, within utility rights of way, in vacant lots of industrial estates, on steep slopes and banks of rivers, and on the grounds of schools, hospitals, prisons, and other institutions. There is aquaculture in tanks, ponds, and pens in rivers. There are silkworms, red wrigglers and mushrooms in peoples homes…
Reusing Greywater in Arid Climates
In short, urban agriculture is anywhere and everywhere that people can find even the smallest space to plant a few seeds or raise a few animals.
Who does it?
What is produced?
Livestock in Cities
Access to land
Use of raw sewage in less developed countries
Lack of technical knowledge
Lack of inputs (seeds, fertilizers, pest management)
UA is here to stay!
Increasing realization that UA can play a role in reducing Urban problems in developed and less developed countries.
Today some enlightened city administrations are embracing the concept rather than attempting to stifle it.
UA is here to stay!
‘ Foodshed’ is becoming a recognized term and being used to describe environmental, social, and economic consequences of growing and transporting food from great distances.
Research and programs are being conducted by large and small organizations (IDRC, Seeds of Self Reliance).