Urban Agriculture: A Regenerative Urban Development Practice to Decrease the Ecological Footprints of Cities

Rowaida Rashed
Modern cities are characterized by intense human interactions and economic activities that in many cases have little or no consideration of the surrounding environment. Every day, the process of urbanization is becoming more resource-intensive which results in climate change, the loss of natural fertility of farmland, and the loss of biodiversity all over the world. High-consumption modern lifestyles are mainly fossil-fuel powered and rely on resources from the world’s ecosystems; a practice that increases the ecological footprints of cities. This paper aims at exploring the means of decreasing the ecological footprints of cities; regenerative urban development practices being some of them. By concentrating on one of these practices, namely urban agriculture, the paper demonstrates how it would be possible to decrease the ecological footprints of cities through its integration on the city level. It starts out by briefly defining the environmental problems our cities are facing today and then moves on to explaining the concept of the ecological footprint. It shows how cities could decrease their ecological footprints through simple practices such as those of regenerative urban development. This is done through demonstrating regenerative practices in different parts of the world with a concentration on urban agriculture as one of the most effective regenerative practices. It then moves on to explaining how it could be integrated within a comprehensive system in cities in order to improve the environmental condition. It also explains how to work on decreasing the ecological footprint in order to start setting the state for a regenerative city.


Ecological Footprint; Regenerative Urban Development; Urban Agriculture; Urban Metabolism; Circular Urban Metabolism;


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