Monocle Looks at the Best Urban Farm Projects

Monocle recently took a look at some of the world’s best urban farming projects.

Monocle’s favourite cities combine small-scale neighbourhoods with green spaces, but not all cities were built with the right foundations for future growth and sustainability. We champion four urban innovators who see potential in derelict spaces and find creative approaches to make some of the worlds more challenging neighbourhoods bloom into richer and more pleasant places to stay.

Sweden Ran Out of Garbage

Late last year Sweden ran out of garbage which caused problems in their energy network. In an ironic step, Sweden’s efficient waste diversion programs are so good that their trash-burning power plants couldn’t find anything to burn. To keep electricity flowing they turned to neighbour Norway for their trash.

Let’s hope that these waste-diversion programs become just as effective elsewhere!

Aside from the economic benefit, Sweden’s system of sustainability clearly has vast environmental benefits. Aside from traditional recycling programs, their waste-to-energy system ensures minimal environmental impact from the country’s waste.

Sweden’s extremely efficient circle of consumption, waste management, and energy output provides the current global population and coming generations inspiration and guidance towards a more sustainable future. They represent one ally of many who understand the need to live sustainably and who fully commit to doing so.

See more here.

Thanks to @ThePeterKelly

Band of the Month: Kira May

Friday….What a day!

Today’s band is Kira May. A Toronto musician whose
hypnotic and soothing loop mastery quiets and captivates entire rooms upon her first breath.

Powerful, layered vocal harmonies, and slow, softly haunting melodies keep you listening to every word. And at live performances she’s known to have appropriately intense visual projections, adding depth and colour to the stage as Kira tweaks her effects on bended knee.

Here’s a little taste of Kira May’s work below. See her live at an art gallery opening or another DIY venue as soon as you can.

Band of the Month by Greg O’Toole

Saudi Arabia Starts $109 Billion Push for Renewable Energy

The end of cheap oil is inevitable and it’s clear that at least one oil-producing nation gets that. Unlike Canada, which seemingly wants to destroy half a province, Saudi Arabia (with the second-largest oil reserves) is looking to invest a lot of money into fossil-fuel-free energy. Saudi Arabia wants it’s domestic energy consumption to eventually be 100% renewable so this $109 billion investment is proof they are on their way there. Hopefully other countries that export oil like Canada and Venezuela will take inspiration and learn about the future of energy from Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia, world’s largest oil exporter, aims to meet one-third of its energy demands by using renewable energy by 2032, setting aside a budget of $109 billion for achieving the goal.

The issue will also top the agenda at the upcoming third annual Solar Arabia Summit to be held in Riyadh from September 29-30.

Here, international and regional renewable energy experts, will discuss the key challenges faced by the Kingdom in the area and steps towards overcoming them.

Read more at Business Standard.

Suburbia Gone Wild

The idealized version of the American suburb has spread around the world and can be found in nearly every country. The banality of the spread has been ignored by artists, at least that’s the feeling of Martin Adolfsson who set out to document this changing global landscape. For example, it’s hard to figure out where the above photo was taken.

In the book Suburbia Gone Wild, you can see the varying takes on sameness throughout the world. It’s a fascinating look at the spread of the suburbs. It’s good to see artists explore the global impact of hegemonic aesthetics and forcing us to ask: is this development the kind of development we want?

Swedish born turned New York City native; photographer Martin Adolfsson has shifted the focus of the camera lens from conventional portraits to dynamic vivid impressions of the urban upper middle class. Having noticed that artists had failed to address the changing panorama of economic shifts all over the world, Adolfsson decided to highlight the issue of social metamorphosis through an innovative array of environmental portraits.

The eight countries featured represented “the dream of American Suburbia that is being copied and pasted and sprinkled with some Hollywood stardust” (Adolfsson). Additionally, with the conscious choice to omit “all these traces of signs and different languages and people”, Adolfsson has effortlessly encapsulated the uniform homogeneousness between these global hubs.

Read more at Trendland.

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