Planning for a Regional Food System

Urban Planning Studio

Spring 2013

Eugenia Manwelyan, critic, with Jinny Khanduja

With the climate changing, the human population growing and the regenerative powers of nature waning, there is little doubt that our world has reached a critical point. As humanity asserts increasingly greater influence over environmental systems, the ability of these systems to continue to support our life, as well as the lives of the countless species with which we share this planet, is called into question. As these changes occur, planning for sustainable food systems becomes increasingly urgent, and livestock plays a central role in these systems. Livestock production and consumption has significant economic and health implications. It impacts land-use, as livestock production accounts for 30% of the land surface of the planet. It is a major factor in climate change, as it plays a key role in deforestation and the livestock sector is responsible for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions. Students worked with Natural Resources Defense Council to explore the ways in which a vibrant regional food system can contribute to ecological sustainability, economic development, and improved health. Specifically, students contributed to the NRDC Grass-fed Beef Project by creating a plan for scaling up regional grass-fed beef production and consumption by proposing a food hub.

Sarah Shannon A
Manwelyan Studio B/C