Vertical farming: a way to avoid an horizontal disaster ?

It is often claimed that, by the year 2050, nearly 80% of the earth’s population will reside in urban centers (we are talking about 8 to 9 billion people). But 80% of the land that is suitable for raising crops is already in use. Some products such as wheat are even now experiencing a new kind of market crisis and unpreceeded prices rise because demand exceeds last season’s harvests. Farming locally is now regarded by some as a possible solution as long that it goes vertically.

Vertical farming has many avantadges :

  • a small footprint that would allow farms to come back in town and reduce therefore the need for transportation.
  • gravity to help the distribution of water and other fluids on the site
  • large surfaces of potential solar energy captation : a chimney + greenhouse effect
  • concentration of waste and used waters that would simplify reuse and treament
  • a field format standardisation that would allow to robotize most of the work

But those farms would act like big trees. The idea certainly has to be tested.

 

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