A Urban Food Forest Oasis Within Seattle

“Forget meadows. The city’s new park will be filled with edible plants, and everything from pears to herbs will be free for the taking.

Seattle’s vision of an urban food oasis is going forward. A seven-acre plot of land in the city’s Beacon Hill neighborhood will be planted with hundreds of different kinds of edibles: walnut and chestnut trees; blueberry and raspberry bushes; fruit trees, including apples and pears; exotics like pineapple, yuzu citrus, guava, persimmons, honeyberries, and lingonberries; herbs; and more. All will be available for public plucking to anyone who wanders into the city’s first food forest”

The concept is as new as it is bold. It brings so many benefits in so many fields that is becomes difficult to write them all down, from providing food free-of-charge to bringing green areas into our cities, to educating our children about the importance of Nature and valuing Earth as the ultimate provider, to making our cities self-sustainable and ascertaining that man and nature can co-exist in harmony. There is a lot of good things coming from this project, but the best would be, in my opinion, to create a new place, an Oasis aside from the consumerist life-style that dwells in our societies today, showing that if we act together as the family we are and learn to share, maybe, just maybe, all this capitalist ideology that is destroying our world with every passing day becomes something that we can just put aside, like an old, muddy pair of shoes that have been used for far too long.

It’s Not a Fairytale - Seattle to Build Nation’s First Food Forest - Beacon Food Forest Schematic Site Plan

“So just who gets to harvest all that low-hanging fruit when the time comes?

“Anyone and everyone”, says Margarett Harrison,  lead landscape architect for the Beacon Food Forest project. “There was major discussion about it. People worried, ‘What if someone comes and takes all the blueberries?’ That could very well happen, but maybe someone needed those blueberries. We look at it this way—if we have none at the end of blueberry season, then it means we’re successful.”

(Read takepart.com original article here.)

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IF…

“Enough Food For Everyone IF…governments keep their climate promise.

The UK and other G8 governments pledged money on top of aid to help poor communities cope with climate change. This film shows how climate change causes hunger and how that money can help mums and dads feed their children.

International shipping and aviation fuel contributes to changes in our climate, but is largely untaxed. It could raise billions of pounds to put food on the table for the poorest families”

“Sahaya”

Ensuing my previous post herewith are some facts for our acknowledgment. World hunger, malnutrition and poverty are allied concepts that descend from one another. We can be the generation to end world hunger if we create enough awareness to create a global movement that understands this is a priority.

It is a fact that enough food for everyone is produced worldwide. “World agriculture produces 17 percent more calories per person today than it did 30 years ago, despite a 70 percent population increase. This is enough to provide everyone in the world with at least 2,720 kilocalories (kcal) per person per day according to the most recent estimate that we could find. The principal problem is that many people in the world do not have sufficient land to grow, or income to purchase, enough food.”

The causes are fundamental to understand to pursue the dream goal: the end of world hunger!

Poverty is on the top of the list. Harmful economic systems are the main cause of poverty, thus of hunger.  And here we go again “Hunger is also a cause of poverty, and thus of hunger. By causing poor health, low levels of energy, and even mental impairment, hunger can lead to even greater poverty by reducing people’s ability to work and learn, thus leading to even greater hunger”. Conflict and climate changes are the two other most significant causes worthy of reference. According to the statistics available, 2005 was the glorious year where the global number of refugees was lowest in almost a quarter of a century. The statistics available suggest that 1.02 billion people suffer from chronic hunger while 36 million people are displaced due to conflict and other reasons. Climate changes affect the development of countries due to unpredictable natural catastrophes or even other natural events not as dramatic, however that require a shift in crops and farming (http://www.worldhunger.org/env_hunger.htm#global%20warming).

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The goal set in 1996 by the World Food Summit was to halve the number of undernourished people by 2015. Despite the efforts made the conclusion is that it hasn’t be done enough to diminish the numbers. The world hasn’t awake. Compassion has not reached everyone. Lets “ join our voices” and together build anew a world where we all have the same opportunities.

“Sahaya!”

To read full article and info:

http://www.worldhunger.org/articles/Learn/world%20hunger%20facts%202002.htm#hunger_meaning_quiz

Children of the World

“India has replaced China as the world’s largest arms buyer, accounting for 10 percent of all arms purchases during the past five years[…] India purchased some $12.7 billion in arms.”

A global food crisis is impacting children all over the world. Food prices around the world have continued to skyrocket – in some areas of the world they are up to 75% in the past years.

Obviously, the ones at higher risk are the poor. Families who are already living on the edge. Families, children who are now going without food for days.

Hunger continues to be a critical issue in India, Africa and elsewhere. India is the home of one in three malnourished children in the world. Although the nation’s grain output has been robust, there is an acute shortage of storage facilities in which to hold it, causing crops to rot. Meanwhile, people in agriculture-poor areas of the country suffer from lack of food and inflated prices. Just like me, I believe there are out there people who are concerned about this impact on the children of the world.

Why not spend these billions in worthy causes…?

Read the entire article here (The New York Times).

When is Enough really Enough?

It’s a well known fact that our irresponsible way of life its taking a terrible toll with every passing day. In their book “Enough is Enough – Building a Sustainable Economy in a World of Finite Resources” (Berrett-Koehler Publishing, San Francisco, CA.), authors Rob Dietz and Dan O’Neill lay the numbers on the table:

  • 7 billion people on earth, with 2.7 billion scraping by on less than $2 per day.
  • 394 parts per million of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, threatening to destabilize the global climate.
  • $15 trillion of public debt in the United States, an unfathomable sum of money to be paid back by the next generation.
  • 2 percent of adults owning more than half of all household wealth in the world.
  • 400 ocean zones devoid of life, with the dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico estimated to cover almost as much area as the U.S. state of New Jersey.

The authors complete these unsettling statistics reminding that the most dire part of these numbers remains unseen: reality. Behind the veil of the lifeless statistical figures lingers the pain of poverty and hunger, the increasing toxicity hidden in the air we inhale, the endless slavery to debt in households all around the world and the extinction of animal species that our sons and daughters will never see.

Must we behave like children and bang our head against the wall before we understand that we cannot live independently of the planet and all that lies within? That the health of the Earth is symbiotically and intrinsically connect to ours? That the happiness of our neighbors is reflected in our own happiness.  So when is enough really enough? Close to one billion people starving when there is enough abundance for everyone if the resources were well-distributed. Earlier this year the air pollution reached unbelievable levels (Beijing’s PM2.5 value reached 600, which is more than 24 times acceptable for human health, Shanghai reached 300) and the forecast is for worse. Globally the world owes 49,819,277,626,442 US dollars and all of the world’s governments owe money, a good question would be to whom do they owe it to? Is the power now in the hands of these lenders? Finally, science holds us responsible for the 6th massive extinction crisis in the history of the world. The one we seem to be solely responsible for.

And yet, there seems to be so little action from the holders of the power of decision.

Lets hope that one day we will be wise enough, as a race, to rise above the smog of greed and competition and understand the simple fact, as the authors so sagaciously point out, that

[…] perhaps the most important number of all is one—one single blue-green planet with finite resources that we all must share.