Vertical farm can make 44,000 pounds of tomatoes on the side of a parking lot - The Verge - 03/15
The Future of Earth
What is the future of Earth? What will the Earth look like in 2100? Will there be abundance or shortages of Earth's natural resources? What role will technology play in Earth's future? How will the choices we make today affect the future of Earth?
Scientists all over the world agree that humans are the cause of global warming and that it could have catastrophic effects. It is important for all countries to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases to limit the future effects of global warming.
As a society, we must break our dependency on fuels that cause pollution by supporting clean, renewable energy sources. Each of us can slow global warming by reducing our carbon footprint and the pollution we produce as individuals every day.
The Doomsday Vault
The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, or the Doomsday Vault as the media have dubbed it, is a shining example of people looking towards the future, considering what could happen, then preparing for the worst case scenario.
Controlling the Weather
New satellites, computers and high tech measuring equipment are helping scientists and researchers learn more about the weather patterns of the earth. By mid century you can expect more accurate weather predictions and eventually, controlling the weather itself.
A vertical farm, 20 stories high and the size of a city block, would have the capacity to grow enough organic vegetables to supply a whole town. There are plenty of positives. 24/7 crop production, no crop failures from droughts, floods or pests.
The problem? The estimated cost of developing and maintaining such large scale urban agriculture, with its massive artificial lighting and hydroponic systems, puts the price of vertical farm produced tomatoes at around $7(USD) each.
Obstacles to vertical farming could be overcome by technology. Vertical farms may be a good application for metamaterials, the new stuff scientists are creating that can bend light. Advances in solar cell technology, lighting, fiber optics, building materials and biotechnology could also make vertical farms more viable.
Image from Plantagon.com
Vertical farms appear to be a practical solution to the growing demand for food and farmland.
More information on vertical farming:
Our Future Water Supply
In the future, global warming and increased population could cause water shortages. Even today, there are millions of people that do not have access to clean water. Can technology help provide the world with fresh, abundant water?