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An increasingly viable solution for climate change is Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA), implemented across the U.S., in states likes New Jersey
The water, energy, and food security nexus is a real and present problem.
Here are some highlights from the website of The Agrarian Group:
As a species, we face the most complex and deadly problems we have ever encountered. Erratic weather events caused by climate change destroy crop yields each year. Pesticides have ruined our soil and water scarcity has become a national security issue. 70% of food cost is linked to fossil fuels, and prices are only expected to rise. The average food item travels 1500 miles to reach it's destination. However, despite everything we do, 40% of all food in the United States is thrown away post-harvest.
The Agrarian Group was started as an answer to a question - How will we feed the projected 9.1 Billion people that will reside on earth in 2050? To achieve this, we need to increase our already stressed agricultural production by 70%. How do we grow better?
Agtech solutions can help solve the challenges we face.
Here is an example of Agtech Solutions in New Jersey:
A public housing community in Jersey City received an unusual amenity earlier this month: an indoor farm that will produce 550 pounds of free leafy greens a year. It’s the first of 10 aeroponic farms that will be installed across the city in a novel pilot program called Healthy Greens JC that aims to tackle food insecurity by merging technology, education and food access.
The program, which will provide a total of 19,000 pounds of free greens to eligible city residents in its first year, aims not just to bring healthier food options to low-income communities, but also to better educate residents about nutrition and healthy eating “as a starting point for a healthier Jersey City,” said Stacey Flanagan, Jersey City’s director of the Department of Health and Human Services.
Healthy Greens JC, which will add other farms at housing, education and community facilities across the city, is the nation’s first municipal vertical farming program, but other programs are bubbling up to pair affordable housing and farms.
Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop first connected with the vertical farm company AeroFarms through the World Economic Forum’s Healthy Cities and Communities Initiative, which aims to facilitate partnerships between public and private stakeholders to foster healthier outcomes. The city worked out a deal with the company to build and maintain the 10 indoor farms, which, like all the company’s farms, use water-efficient aeroponic technology to grow food indoors, and without using soil.
AeroFarms runs a commercial vertical farm in nearby Newark, New Jersey, which has the capacity to produce 2 million pounds of fresh greens annually to distribute across the country. When it opened in 2016, it was billed as the largest vertical farm in the world, with the potential to expand food production in urban areas by using space and resources more efficiently. But despite its dominant presence in a city with high poverty rates and food insecurity, it was not reaching most Newark residents with its produce, which sell at organic prices. (AeroFarms has had some programs to donate greens or offer discounts at its farm stands in Newark.)