Downtown Manhattan is hardly a place you would associate with agriculture. Rather, with its countless restaurants, cafes, shops and supermarkets this is a place of consumption.I have a hard time believing that this was fly at all. The economics of it would be loss generating I would think wrt to the value generated via using it as a high rise for homes or offices. Strange. Carlos? Doug? Thoughts?
And so every morsel, every bite of food New Yorkers munch through every day must be trucked, shipped or flown in, from across the country, and across the world.
Now though, scientists at Columbia University are proposing an alternative. Their vision of the future is one in which the skyline of New York and other cities include a new kind of skyscaper: the "vertical farm".
The idea is simple enough. Imagine a 30-storey building with glass walls, topped off with a huge solar panel.
On each floor there would be giant planting beds, indoor fields in effect.
There would be a sophisticated irrigation system.
And so crops of all kinds and small livestock could all be grown in a controlled environment in the most urban of settings.
That means there would be no shipping costs, and no pollution caused by moving produce around the country.
It's all the brainchild of Columbia University Professor Dickson Despommier.