Urban Agriculture: Systems and Policy Development

Urban Agriculture’s contribution to food security and food safety is becoming more widely recognized as the driver behind the global adaptation of urban food production. Because urban agriculture promotes energy-saving, local food production, and can also involve animal husbandry, aquaculture, agro-forestry and horticulture, it is generally seen a sustainable practice. The recognition of world-wide environmental degradation, peak oil and population growth has inspired the implementation of different schemes of urban agriculture across the developed and developing world. From historic models such as Machu Picchu to designs for modern, high technology and intensively productive urban farms, the idea of locating agriculture in the city takes on many characteristics.

‘As urban areas grow in population, they expand outward, often overwhelming the natural environment, destroying ecosystems, and drawing resources from well beyond their defined limits. Cities' dependence on massive and relentless imports of food, energy, and other resources from distant areas, and often on exports of their wastes to those areas, can also be destructive. The city's ecological footprint has long been a problem in the cities of the North’ (Rees 1997).

Urban agriculture alone will not solve the ecological problems of growing cities, but it does help to protect the environment in a variety of ways. For example, in many cities urban farmers make productive use of many organic waste products, turning them into soil-enhancing mulch. Wastewater can be used to irrigate crops. By cultivating every available piece of open space — even rooftops — urban farmers contribute to the greening of the city, helping to reduce pollution and improve air quality.

Our expertise in permaculture, organic agriculture, green roof design, sustainable community planning can help a city and/or new development reduce their ecological footprint even as they continue to grow.

Write to us for details: ibs_pei@yahoo.com

ISO 26000-Corporate Social Responsibility:
helping you assess the moral, social and environmental value of your activities.

The need for organizations in both public and private sectors to behave in a socially responsible way is becoming a generalized requirement of society. ISO 26000 is intended to provide guidance on social responsibility concepts, definitions and methods of evaluation.

‘In the very near future, no company will be in business if it has not completed a social audit and implemented the practices of ‘corporate social responsibility.’
George McRobie, author ‘The Community's Role in Appropriate Technology,’ plus numerous publications on sustainable economics.

According to the International Standards Organization, (ISO), the standard will:

  • Assist organizations in addressing their social responsibilities while respecting cultural, societal, environmental/legal differences and economic development conditions
  • Provide guidance related to integrating social responsibility with operations; identifying and engaging with stakeholders; and enhancing credibility of reports and claims made about social responsibility
  • Emphasize performance results and improvement
  • Increase confidence and satisfaction in organizations among their customers and other stakeholders
  • Be consistent with and not in conflict with existing documents, international treaties and conventions and existing ISO standards
  • Not be intended to reduce government's authority to address the social responsibility of organizations
  • Promote common terminology in the social responsibility field
  • Broaden awareness of social responsibility
  • IBS has followed the development of ISO 26000 and is now working closely with consultants who contributed and approved this new standard We are well positioned to help companies voluntarily adopt ‘Corporate Social Responsibility Standards.’

    Write to us for details: ibs_pei@yahoo.com

    Social Entrepreneurship Boot Camp

    There is a changing demographic make-up of 21st century business managers. Over 90% of new business people are small, diversified, direct marketing entrepreneurs.

    The modern business manager recognizes that investors and customers are now insisting upon the need for social or environmental commitments to remain central to the company operations. When social enterprises apply market-based strategies to generate profit in order to further their social and or environmental goals this is often referred to as the ‘triple bottom line.’ Business people are also turning to social media to network and build relationships with ‘clients’ rather than simply raking profit from ‘customers.’ They are motived by a changing paradigm in the western economy; one that has shifted from a ‘Get Big-Winner take all,” attitude to one that emphasizes collaboration, self-reliance and environmental sustainability.

    For the most part, government policy and academic institutions have not yet caught up to this new wave of socially responsible enterprise. The Institute for Bioregional Studies is well positioned to address this void with a 3-5 day ‘Entrepreneurship Boot Camp.’

    An Outline of the Social Entrepreneurship Boot Camp is outlined below:

    • Basics of Starting a Business
      • Crash course in Basic Accounting, a
      • Critical Cash Control,
      • Legal Basics (i.e. roles and responsibilities on management)
      • Market Identification
    • Bioregional Economies,
      • Secure, Accessible, Fair and Ecological
    • Entrepreneurial Thinking and 'Guerilla Marketing': From Idea to Action
    • Business Assessment:
      • What's Your Product/Service,
      • Who/What is Your Market,
      • What is its Impact (Economic, Environmental, Social, Cultural)

    Write to us for details: ibs_pei@yahoo.com

    Professional Writing Services - ready to serve you

    By Nancy Willis -is a professional writing service designed to assist clients with their writing projects, whether small or large. My work is clear, engaging and effective.

    I will write copy for you that says exactly what you want to say in a way that readers understand immediately and be inspired to take action. What you mean will be clearly expressed, and flow naturally.

    Whether you want to educate, build interest, document events, generate sales, or increase traffic, I’ll write copy that leaps out at readers, and gets results. See: www.bynancywillis.com

    For More Information Contact:
    Phil Ferraro and Nancy Willis
    114 Upper Prince Street
    Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
    C1A 4S3
    Tel: 902-367-0390

    "Restoring Community, Protecting the Land and Informing the Earth’s Stewards"