Lawmaker wants agriculture for urban centers, cities-A A +A
Monday, August 6, 2012
SASMUAN -- Association of Laborers and Employees (ALE) Representative Catalina Bagasina has filed a proposed bill that aims to encourage agriculture among cities and urban centers all across the country.
Bagasina filled House Bill 4750 or “Urban Agriculture Act of 2011” that seeks to promote urban agriculture and farming practices employing environmentally friendly technology like vertical farming and the use of open spaces in urban centers.
The bill aims to promote food security through modern farming technology that is engineered to the needs of urban centers and cities.
The move also calls on urban planners to rethink their development plans for their respective cities.
Bagasina told the national press that “government lots and buildings that are idle or abandoned by either national or local governments or available land resources in state universities and colleges will be given prime consideration for growing crops, raising livestock, and producing food.”
“The world population will double in 50 years. Studies have shown that new lands will be needed to grow food for everyone. Urban agriculture and farming will not only clean our environment but mitigate the effects of climate change as well,” Bagasina was quoted on saying.
Bagasina said he is optimistic that urban poor families may directly benefit from the bill once approved into law. She added that this would also bring down prices of agricultural products as cities and urban centers will be producing their own supply and would no longer depend on supplies coming from provinces that end up with high prices in local markets due to middleman practices.
The Department of Agriculture and Department of Science and Technology (Dost) are tasked by the proposed bill to “promote and propagate” urban agriculture through vertical farming techniques.
Urban agriculture means the production, processing and marketing of food in response to the demand of consumers within a town, city or metropolis with the application of intensive production methods such as the use and reuse of urban resources and wastes to yield a diversity of crops and livestock.
Vertical farming, on the other hand, refers to the method of farming that is brought to the urban space by employing the concepts of indoor agriculture in skyscrapers and other modern buildings, the proposal said.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on August 07, 2012.