Urban food security will be tackled at the Green Building Council of South Africa's (GBCSA) education day that precedes its fourth annual convention and exhibition in Cape Town from 26-28 October 2011. Urban geographer and UCT academic, Dr Jane Battersby, on behalf of African Food Security Urban Network (AFSUN), will join a team of ecologists, nutritionists, researchers and other thought-leaders in provocative workshops and talks exploring the vital role that urban planning can have in feeding the future.
A recent AFSUN survey of low-income areas in 11 southern African cities found that 77% of households are struggling with food insecurity.
While buildings and food may seem unrelated at first glance, GBCSA CEO Brian Wilkinson explains that smart, green thinking about metropolitan geography has a pivotal role to play in urban food security.
"Many of the protests of the recent 'Arab Spring' had their genesis in food price protests," he says. "It would be foolish to ignore the impact of urban food security challenges and every economic sector, including the property sector, should be looking at how they can contribute to a solution for the sake of their own sustainability."
"In the context of global food crises and climate change, food security should be a key consideration in designing healthy, resilient and sustainable cities," adds Dr Battersby.
For more information, go to www.gbcsa-convention.org.za