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Reimagining Resources to Build Smart Futures: An Agritech Case Study of Aeroponics

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Smart Futures, Challenges of Urbanisation, and Social Sustainability

Abstract

Global resources for food production are heavily, and unsustainably, utilised with known inefficiencies, in a complex, integrated international supply chain. Produce availability and scarcity vary from country to country and from continent to continent, approximately correlated with GDP rather than with either population quanta or domestic agricultural resources. The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs 2015 Reportforecasts global human population to increase from 7.3 billion in 2015 to 9.7 billion in 2050. The challenges in evening up global nutrition standards with the additional expected demand require great change within the agriculture industry, especially if the outputs are to be produced sustainably in order to safeguard future generations of production and ecosystem health. Great effort has been taken to make more of less; however, this chapter seeks to demonstrate how a complete rethink to resource usage is key to achieving the sustainability required alongside raising food standards globally.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs 2015 Report. http://www.un.org/en/development/desa/news/population/2015-report.html

  2. 2.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2011/jul/02/british-farmers-supermarket-price-wars

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    (Gever et al. 1991).

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    “Energy-smart” agriculture needed to escape fossil fuel trap –Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. http://www.fao.org/news/story/en/item/95161/icode/

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    (Gever et al. 1991; Pimentel and Giampletro 1994). http://www.resilience.org/stories/2006-06-11/implications-fossil-fuel-dependence-food-system/

  9. 9.

    Sustainable Agriculture. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sustainable_agriculture

  10. 10.

    http://www.fareshare.org.uk/supply-chain-food-waste

  11. 11.

    http://action2020.org/business-solutions/reducing-food-loss-and-waste

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    Implications Of Fossil Fuel Dependence For The Food System Jay Tomczak, Tompkins Country Relocalization Project June 11, 2006. http://www.resilience.org/stories/2006-06-11/implications-fossil-fuel-dependence-food-system/

  13. 13.

    Professor Nigel Dummett, University of Sheffield. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/britain-facing-agricultural-crisis-as-scientists-warn-there-are-only-100-harvests-left-in-our-farm-9806353.html

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  17. 17.

    Deforestation: Facts, Causes and Effects Alina Bradford Live Science. https://www.livescience.com/27692-deforestation.html

  18. 18.

    Sustainable Agriculture. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sustainable_agriculture

  19. 19.

    Soil Erosion and its effects Rhett Butler. https://rainforests.mongabay.com/0903.htm

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    (Gever et al. 1991; Pimentel and Giampletro 1994). http://www.resilience.org/stories/2006-06-11/implications-fossil-fuel-dependence-food-system/

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    http://blog.aicr.org/2015/01/27/study-effect-of-whole-grain-oats-on-gut-bacteria-and-health/

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  23. 23.

    Comparison of Land, Water, and Energy Requirements of Lettuce Grown Using Hydroponic vs. Conventional Agricultural Methods. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4483736/

  24. 24.

    Constraints on the Expansion of the Global Food Supply by Henery W. Kindall and David Pimentel, from Ambio Vol. 23 No. 3, May 1994, The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

  25. 25.

    Implications of Fossil Fuel Dependence for the Food System. Jay Tomczak, originally published by Tompkins Country Relocalization Project June 11, 2006. http://www.resilience.org/stories/2006-06-11/implications-fossil-fuel-dependence-food-system/

  26. 26.

    (Cox et al. 2006; Glover et al. 2007).

  27. 27.

    http://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/paying-farmers-to-help-the-environment-works-but-perverse-subsidies-must-be-balanced

  28. 28.

    https://www.regenerative.com/magazine/six-sustainable-agricultural-practices

  29. 29.

    (Kasperczyk and Knickel 2006; Kustermann et al. 2010).

  30. 30.

    (Clark et al. 1998). https://www.nap.edu/read/12832/chapter/8#227

  31. 31.

    https://cereals.ahdb.org.uk/media/655816/is41-opportunities-for-cover-crops-in-conventional-arable-rotations.pdf

  32. 32.

    https://www.nap.edu/read/12832/chapter/8#252

  33. 33.

    Growing sustainable agriculture in Mozambique (April 2015), Laura Silici and Lila Buckley, IIED Backgrounder. https://www.iied.org/five-ways-make-farming-more-sustainable

  34. 34.

    http://www.osmobot.com/blog/the-importance-of-dissolved-oxygen-in-hydroponics

  35. 35.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4483736/. Comparison of Land, Water, and Energy Requirements of Lettuce Grown Using Hydroponic vs. Conventional Agricultural Methods.

  36. 36.

    Jason Hawkins-Row, CEO Aponic Ltd. – Observations of agricultural opportunities in Zambia 2017.

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Correspondence to Helen Mytton-Mills .

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Mytton-Mills, H. (2018). Reimagining Resources to Build Smart Futures: An Agritech Case Study of Aeroponics. In: Dastbaz, M., Naudé, W., Manoochehri, J. (eds) Smart Futures, Challenges of Urbanisation, and Social Sustainability. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-74549-7_10

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-74549-7_10

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