In the past two years I have had an opportunity to learn much more about agriculture than I ever imagined. Agriculture is an unbelievably complex web of land, ecology, water, production capacity and distribution. I barely scratched the surface of this complex web to pull together a grant proposal to fund an urban agriculture research project – Community Integrated Agriculture Development. The project will analyze the energy and greenhouse gas emission reductions resulting from close integration of farm and residential resources in an otherwise energy dense suburban environment.
Our firm received funding for the research project from the California Energy Commission Small Grants Program in the fall of 2011. We set to work identifying and analyzing transportation, energy, organic waste, and water resource technologies. We believe that a combination of technology, planning and design efforts will dramatically reduce farm and household transportation, energy and water use. We also believe that we can create a path for organics that make household food scraps a resource instead of a waste. The report will include a study of two prototypical sites to assess development opportunities throughout the Sacramento region. We expect to complete the research in the fall of this year.