Embracing Complexity

THE DIRT

2. Living Breakwaters Beach perspective Living Breakwaters: social, economic, and ecological resiliency through risk reduction / SCAPE Landscape Architecture PLLC

“It’s going to unbearable outside in the southern half of the U.S. by the end of the century,” said Harriet Tregoning, director of the office of economic resilience, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), at a lecture on Rebuild by Design at the National Building Museum (NBM).

Explaining why we need new approaches to resilience, she said in just the first twelve years of this century, we’ve already seen the two costliest natural disasters in U.S. history (Hurricanes Katrina in 2005 and Sandy in 2012), along with more frequent and extreme events, such as wildfires, droughts, and flooding — which scientists say all result from climate change. Consider also the trend towards urbanization, particularly in coastal areas, and you have a precarious mix of higher exposure to risk for ever-increasing populations in some…

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There is no Golden Age

riversandstone

“What the Founding Fathers actually meant was…”

“Well, if you really read into the Bible, you’ll see that Jesus meant…”

“We’re not meant to eat wheat.  If you knew what our paleo ancestors used to eat…”

We hear remarks like these all the time, in casual conversation on politics, religion, history, to the point of cliché.   They all share a common theme: to put it simply, things aren’t going as well today as they were yesterday, so if we simply figure out what people were doing yesterday, we can get better!

When I used to teach, I would occasionally drive home three “rules” of history.

1.  There is no Virgin Land

2.  There are no Indigenous Peoples

3.  There is no Golden Age

I’m going to focus here on the final of the three rules (the other two I may get to later).  The quotes I opened with were fixations…

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Michigan Loses ‘Right To Farm’ This Week: A Farewell To Backyard Chickens and Beekeepers

Taking Back America

From The Inquisitr
By Dawn Papple | 2 May 2014

Michigan backyard chicken farmers lost their Right To Farm protection under the new GAAMP changes.

Michigan residents lost their “right to farm” this week thanks to a new ruling by the Michigan Commission of Agriculture and Rural Development. Gail Philburn of the Michigan Sierra Club told Michigan Live, the new changes “effectively remove Right to Farm Act protection for many urban and suburban backyard farmers raising small numbers of animals.” Backyard and urban farming were previously protected by Michigan’s Right to Farm Act. The Commission ruled that the Right to Farm Act protections no longer apply to many homeowners who keep small numbers of livestock.

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ORGANIC TRANSITIONS: Up on a Roof

2012 The Awakening

You don’t have to live in a rural area to crave locally grown foods. And you don’t have to move to the countryside to grow them.

More and more people are growing their own food. Either because they want to be more self-sufficient. Or because they want cleaner, healthier food. And the “grow-your-own” movement is finding creative ways to fit gardening into their schedules. And into common spaces.

In Japan, commuters can plant seeds and pull weeds while they’re waiting for their train to arrive. And they’re grooming their gardens right in the center of the world’s most populated city—Tokyo. Because Japan’s commuters can lease public garden space on the train station rooftop.

Tokyo isn’t the only city planting gardens on their rooftop. It’s happening all over the world, including in some American cities.

Read more about Tokyo’s train station rooftop farms

Check out this video of rooftop farms in…

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