Great article from Michigan Radio featuring green hopes for Detroit and the Eastside Greenway Network.
"In Detroit we have a real chance to do things with our land that no other major city in the world has ever done. From growing food and producing solar power to planting trees and improving public health, Detroit’s 23 square miles of vacant land offers a future full of possibilities.
That was the mood and topic of discussion at the latest “Ideas for Innovation” event hosted by Detroit Future City. Some excellent questions arose from this community conversation that are worth continued consideration as we examine how best to transform Detroit’s vacant land into an open space amenity. Some include:
If we come up with plans and develop the open spaces in our neighborhoods, how do we protect them from future development? Who’s responsible for maintaining these spaces in the long-term? How will all of these projects interconnect?
These questions all point to the need for a citywide master plan and open space plan that offer a shared vision for the future, as well as room for communities and neighborhoods to plan within it." ... See MoreSee Less
Today is #WomensEqualityDay and a wonderful opportunity to acknowledge the critical role that women play in growing food to feed the world. Women are farming in greater numbers each year, and The Female Farmer Project is here to share their stories.
"Say the word “farmer” and who do you think of?
A man in Carhartts?
Well, it’s time to start rethinking the farmer image, because when it comes to sustainable agriculture, women are a big part of our future.
While globally agriculture is a male-dominated industry, there are a lot of women, and those women are the answer to questions of food justice and food security. In the developing world, women make up about 43 percent of the agricultural labor force – and they are responsible for 60-80 percent of food production in these areas – but a serious gender gap still exists because in many cultures, women are barred from land rights. Focusing on women’s rights and gender equality in these areas will not only benefit women, but the food system as well.
According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), if women had the same access to resources for production and marketing of crops as their male counterparts, they could increase agricultural yields by 20-30 percent. That’s enough to pull somewhere between 100 and 150 million people out of hunger."
The pheromone-based mating disruption technique also keeps the cranberries and pollinators healthy and safe by reducing pesticide application.
"Wisconsin is the nation’s leading producer of cranberries, growing more fruit than all other states combined. Insect pests are a perennial problem, and while growers have insecticide sprays that largely do the job, Steffan notes, there’s room for improvement — especially in the interest of saving pollinators, including honeybees.
“One of the typical spray-timings for the cranberry fruitworm is when the adult moths are flying, which is right during bloom when the honey bees are out,” explains Steffan. “That’s one of the huge drivers behind pheromone-based mating disruption — to avoid spraying when pollinators are active.”
In addition to such environmental benefits, this approach could also have a major impact on growers’ bottom lines. By doing fewer pesticide applications, the state’s cranberries should have an easier time entering European and Asian markets, which have stricter rules about pesticide residue levels."
This project is supported by the United States Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA Award 2011-68004-30044, Evaluating Innovation And Promoting Success In Community And Regional Food Systems.