Context: Urban agriculture can help make cities sustainable and liveable
- Urban agriculture is the practice of farming in urban and peri-urban areas.
- Farming connotes a wide range of food and non-food products that can be cultivated or grown, including rearing livestock, aquaculture and bee-keeping.
Need for Urban Agriculture
- Urban areas across the world house at least 55 per cent of the world’s population and consume 80 per cent of the food produced globally
- India is rapidly urbanising and is estimated to host 50 per cent of its population in cities by
- In order to sustain these huge population and face climate change it is important that urban areas becomes sustainable and liveable
- Urban agriculture provides food security and financial security to urban dwellers
Benefits of Urban Agriculture
- Business Growth: Urban farming helps stimulate the local economy through job creation, income generation, and the growth of small businesses.
- Job Creation: Urban farms can offer valuable skills and education in addition to a steady source of income to many unemployed, even if it is seasonal work.
- Urban Redevelopment: Unused lands and wastelands can be used for cultivation purposes. It creates more green space and reduces pollution.
- Health and Wellness: Urban farming creates fresh produce closer to where it’s ultimately consumed. Food from urban farms is far more likely to be perfectly ripe, more nutritious, and produced in season.
- Less Food Waste: People produce only what they need. This reduces food wastage to a large extent.
- Environmental Management: urban agriculture has a significant role in urban environmental management as it can combat urban heat island effects and function as an urban lung in addition to providing visual appeal
- Waste Management: since cities are struggling with waste management and disposal, urban agriculture can provide some help to deal with it.
- The use of suitably treated waste water for urban agriculture can reduce demand for fresh water and help in waste water disposal.
- Moreover, organic waste from the city can be composted and used in food and flower production
- Urban farming can be a favorable way for ensuring food security in India and around the world in the future.
- Proper Urban land-use planning (ULP), Institutional support, awareness of the benefits associated with urban agriculture, and financial and technological support from the government will attract the city dwellers and help them to move forward with the concept of urban agriculture in India.
- Progressive growth of urban agriculture can act as an urban regeneration tool for the cities by providing social interaction and increasing job opportunities and environmental benefits to the urban areas across the globe.
Source: Indian Express