When the Cities Close
Just because we can, doesn’t mean we should. I say this while thinking about cities in the arid regions such as Phoenix, Los Angelis, Las Vegas. It seems totally unnatural to have a city somewhere where it can’t possibly support itself. It is also unnatural to have a city that is so large that it can’t support itself. We may see these cities abandoned within our lifetime because of a lack of water and the expense of trucking in food. It is getting pretty desperate, and it a problem that can’t be fixed with conservation. It is far past that point.
Oddly, I doubt that Clatsop County could support its population on what could possibly be grown and raised here; though we may come close to self sufficiency in the beef and dairy production. We may be able to supply enough power for local consumption is we were to have wind mills on the coast and up and down the river. We have a good water supply.
We keep hearing reports of food riots and hording, but what happens if this becomes a reality for every community? You would think that maybe the Mid-west would do fine with all their agriculture, but most of what is grown in the Mid-west is corn for processing and ethanol production. There is very little coming out of the American bread basket states that is fit for human consumption these days. The corn and soy all needs to be processed before humans can eat it.
It is becoming clear how important it is to buy locally produced foods. Transporting our food from all over the country and the world is not only costly, but it is a risky proposition if transportation prices make it too expensive to continue trucking and shipping it in. By supporting our local growers we hope it will keep them well fed so they can keep us well fed if the current system fails.
It is more important than ever to grow our own supplemental food supply. If you aren't already doing it, start small. Put in some beans or peas. It will taste good and you will save some money. You may even find that you like it so much that you may put in a simple greenhouse to grow things like tomatoes, peppers and basil; three things that only seem to grow well indoors in our cold coastal climate.
The great thing about plants is that you don't need a lot of land. Most thing can be grown in containers and easily protected when the weather changes.
Getting local now will help you adjust slowly. There is the possibility that locally grown items will be all you will be able to get in the future. If that happens there will be a mass migration from the cities to places where people can eat.