William Wheeler Anderson IMYIM, I am why I am
Fundamentals of The American Spirituality Party

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

An Idea Worth Working For

I have proposed that the National Park Service lease Alcatraz Island for the construction of a Vertical Farm-isphere.

More on that, a letter to Governor Schwarzenegger:

I propose a working symbol to the great state of California be constructed over the Alcatraz National Park. Just as the Golden Gate was built over a fort, the bridge does more than serve commuters, it symbolizes that in advances in effective enterprise, we must accept the new order. Alcatraz Island has a fort and a prison, but are of the past, the future belongs to innovation, and here’s the reason.

Sustainable farming has been created in the form of Vertical Farms, to be erected everywhere as flat farming reaches limitations both in available land balancing life, and destructive byproducts affecting life on earth.

If the power of creating a vision of the future now, cannot override the National Park’s prerogatives to the people, to collaborate in positioning and juxtaposition, to accommodate a powerful idea, then this ends here.


In the new age, farming technology will be the unifier of the World, and that requires leadership, and where but from the preeminent farm state in the world, California. As the new administration takes place in Washington, they will be hamstrung for some time on economic and military and Congressional issues.

While Washington, and CA, battle issues of the old order, some little vision focused here might have enough power to actually do something. The Governor’s leadership can combine resources with business to develop Vertical Farming, and create a new impetus for America to export throughout developing nations as well as highly advanced nations.

President Obama is right in declaring war on lobbyists and business as usual, but that’s another war! The only victory that stands before us is the advance on freedom by cultural power, which is simply making life more meaningful. We think because the politicians and media tell us where to think, while innovation surfaces outside the Beltway, in the people.

What is Vertical Farming?

Vertical Farming is urban space farming bringing fresh produce to the local market. Instead of flat field farming, it is about minimal groundspace in an urban area, a high rise structure, that provides local produce, as well as expertise and employment, with little or no damage to the environment, that is, no pesticide, herbicide, pollution run-off, water and land contamination, and a water management concept that recycles.

The sustainable goal is to return earth to more natural landscape and habitat, the kind that can support water cycles, not animal grazing and single crop devastation that abrogates water.

Vertical Farming is the “Prius” of the farming world. The visionary who developed the concept is at Columbia, Dickson Despommier. [www.verticalfarm.com] In a list from the website, these are Despommier’s benefits:

Advantages of Vertical Farming
Year-round crop production; 1 indoor acre is equivalent to 4-6 outdoor acres or more, depending upon the crop (e.g., strawberries: 1 indoor acre = 30 outdoor acres)
No weather-related crop failures due to droughts, floods, pests.
All VF food is grown organically: no herbicides, pesticides, or fertilizers.
VF virtually eliminates agricultural runoff by recycling black water.
VF returns farmland to nature, restoring ecosystem functions and services.
VF greatly reduces the incidence of many infectious diseases that are acquired at the agricultural interface.
VF converts black and gray water into potable water by collecting the water of evapotranspiration.
VF adds energy back to the grid via methane generation from composting non-edible parts of plants and animals.
VF dramatically reduces fossil fuel use (no tractors, plows, shipping).
VF converts abandoned urban properties into food production centers.
VF creates sustainable environments for urban centers.
VF creates new employment opportunities.

And, we cannot go to the moon, Mars, or beyond without first learning to farm indoors on earth.
VF may prove to be useful for integrating into refugee camps.
VF offers the promise of measurable economic improvement for tropical and subtropical LDCs. If this should prove to be the case, then VF may be a catalyst in helping to reduce or even reverse the population growth of LDCs as they adopt urban agriculture as a strategy for sustainable food production.
VF could reduce the incidence of armed conflict over natural resources, such as water and land for agriculture.

My proposal is to create a symbol at a marvelous perspective, for people to wonder at, think about, be inspired by sustainable concepts, to visit San Francisco and see a wonder of the world, and for San Franciscans to eat locally, -really locally.

This will not replace flat field farming, but the potential is so great in terms of our food evolution that the time is NOW to examine steps to create a model, as well, join business in the adventure, but above all, the political course must begin to move through the power of a commitment.

Unlike the course of allegiances throughout history, this is not something to die for, rather awkwardly, instead it is something to live for. That is the distinct difference from Inside Beltway thinking, and is a perfect handle for West Coast thinking, specifically, The Governor of California. (I recommend Governor Richardson be brought-in as a bipartisanship development team, uniting our power to innovate with international interests. The Freedom is outside the clutch of central government, the mandate is the future, NOW is the time.

My proposal is to construct that commitment to the future of All Peoples that can carry forth America with a mission, an idea that will give people that Hope and that Change so often bandied about without meaning.

Literally almost flying over the Alcatraz Prison in the shape of a globe, shining within and without, could capture the attention of anybody. Because it produces food, energy with solar power, clean water from drainage, using topsoil from the Walla Walla basin in Washington State, and using California farming and technology expertise, -it would be like flying-off, more thantaking huge steps, to spread seeds of the model throughout the world.

It would be as the next great flight for mankind.

The globe would glow and be a wonder in the world for sustainable objects and vision, and shine greater than the light held by the Statue of Liberty in New York City. Americans would begin to understand their destiny.