Sea level rise and the challenge it presents to South Florida is part of a larger problem...climate warming. According to one South Miami-Dade grower referenced in the Miami Herald on January 2, 2015, this winter has been 10 degrees hotter than normal.
NOAA scientists, on January 8, 2015, reported 2014 was "the 34th warmest year since record keeping began in 1895, while the temperature exceeded the 20th century average for the 18th consecutive year."
Given projections of longer periods of increased tempertures, climate change heating has joined sea level rise as local challenges to be addressed today. If agricultural fields, including grazing lands, are to be protected for mid-century (only 35 years away), we need to control increasingly hot temperatures to protect vulnerable fields and promote national food security.
The slides above (hover cursor over and click each for narrative) offer one potential solution to increasing temperatures as we consider elevated landscapes to mitigate against pending intrusion of salt water.
Protecting Food Security; Advanced Concepts
Above: This amazing rotating Japanese dome farm was captured on video last year. This dome is 95.14 feet wide, or 31.71 yards, about the length of an olympic-sized swimming pool.
Scaled to a greater size, the arc-shaped greenhouse can maximize larger crop yields while controling temperature and humidity and making efficient use of modern growing technologies. In hurricane prone regions, the inflatable nature of this structure offers interesting possibilities.
Inspired by adverse climate conditions, we can learn much from this example. Given sea level rise and increased heat projections for the next 10 years and beyond, Southeastern Florida is ripe for an experiment of this type, on a raised field.
Courtesy Granpa Co. and YouTube, "Dome-Shaped Greenhouse in Japan." 12.3.14.
Above: California offers evidence of what heat and saltwater can do to crops.
Courtesy KQED and YouTube, "Heat and Harvest." 9.26.12. Length: 26:46.
Above: High tech vertical farming in urban environments? Check out this visionary video from Fw: Thinking and You Tube, published November 5, 2014; 4:33.
Above: 1 square block farm, 30 stories high, could yield as much food as 10 square km outdoors, according to "The Future of Food- Vertical Farming, Nanotech, Water Conservatin and GMO," from Bright Entertainment and YouTube. July 12, 2012; Length 2:19.
Please click on picture for slide show.
Above: An energy efficient, hurricane resistant agricultural dome, capable of capturing harmful chemical runoff, minimizing insect invasion, collecting rain, regulating re-usable waste water and insulating against increasing and harmful temperatures caused by climate change, sits atop a conceptual Southeastern Florida raised field to adapt to sea level rise.
The system is designed also to increase crop yields and sustain the local farming economy, while easing labor conditions. Rising seas, salt water, severe weather events and hotter temperatures are significant threats to food production by mid-century, and in some areas, much sooner. The elevated agricultural dome, constructed over a high but sound structural earthen base, is designed to address peer-reviewed credible scientific projections of the adverse effects of our changing world. The system will also produce sustainable, advanced and efficient farming.
With the seamless marriage of the ancient practice of heightened mounds, modern architecture and new farming technologies, 21st Century engineers, architects, hydrology experts and agriculture specialists can work together to create a new sustainable Southeast Florida rural economy.
This is the advanced Raising Fields Project Concept for agricultural adaptation to sea level rise and increasing temperatures caused by climate change.
Concept: Mitch Chester; Illustrations: Maximlisogora on Fiverr. Copyright M. Chester 2015.
Above: "The Singapore Vertical Farms that Herald an Agricultural Revolution," by Journeyman Pictures and YouTube. Published September 9,2013; Length: 6:46.