Wired News: No Green Acres? Try Skyscrapers

Sep. 28, 2005 PT

Tens of thousands of empty storage containers are stacked in towers along I-95 across from the harbor in Newark, New Jersey. They’re heaped there in perpetuity, too cheap to be shipped back to Asia but too expensive to melt down.

Where many might see a pile of garbage, Lior Hessel sees, of all things, an organic farm. Those storage containers would be ideal housing for miniature farms, he believes, stacked one upon another like an agricultural skyscraper, all growing fresh organic produce for millions of wealthy consumers. And since the crops would be grown with artificial lighting, servers, sensors and robots, the cost of labor would consist of a single computer technician’s salary. “>Wired News: No Green Acres? Try Skyscrapers: “02:00 AM Sep. 28, 2005 PT

Tens of thousands of empty storage containers are stacked in towers along I-95 across from the harbor in Newark, New Jersey. They’re heaped there in perpetuity, too cheap to be shipped back to Asia but too expensive to melt down.

Where many might see a pile of garbage, Lior Hessel sees, of all things, an organic farm. Those storage containers would be ideal housing for miniature farms, he believes, stacked one upon another like an agricultural skyscraper, all growing fresh organic produce for millions of wealthy consumers. And since the crops would be grown with artificial lighting, servers, sensors and robots, the cost of labor would consist of a single computer technician’s salary.

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Author: Jorah Lavin

I grew up in New England, moved to the Carolinas in '98 to start working at what was then a large regional bank and is now a really big nationwide bank. I work doing intranet content management and intranet site management for said bank. After work, I watch movies & eat. I started knitting years ago in order to take a break from my school work. I haven't stopped yet. I'm also learning to spin. I blog about knitting on A Tinker's Damn: http://jorahlavin.wordpress.com/

  • Handsome Rob

    Does the idea of “manufacturing” organic crops with robots and artificial light seem like an oxymoron to anyone else? Organic may just mean no artificial pesticides, herbicides, etc. to the government, but in a larger sense I believe it means growing produce the way it would grow in nature. That means sun. Anyway, check out my blog post on organic produce to read a more detailed discussion of this topic.

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