The Future of Rural Life on the Columbia River

Image via Wikipedia While driving down in Eastern Washington State this weekend, I was stuck by the remoteness of many of the small towns and villages in this region, (both in BC and Washington). In some of these places you wonder how it is that people are able to scrape a living from the land […]

Canadian Debt Serfs

Despite Canada’s official continued rosy outlook on the economy and the country’s position globally, cracks are showing. For example, the Victoria (BC) Real Estate Board is preparing to release it’s June sales vs listing data, which isn’t looking so good. House Hunt Victoria has parsed the information and created some simple graphs that tell quite […]

Set Up for Failure

As a society, (or a species, take your pick), we are terrible at planning and strategising much further than what we are planning to eat for dinner. while Japanese companies plan for world domination in five generations, we are stuck in a revolving door of problems that need immediate attention. But even when we get […]

Tar Sands – Progress or Stupidity?

“With just 5% of the world’s population, the United States now burns up to 20.6 million barrels of oil a day, or 25% of the worlds current output.” The insatiable demand for oil means that US ports must accept on supertanker every four hours, just to keep the country running. From America’s perspective, the large […]

Obama Wins The Nobel Prize Luckydip

So Obama got the Nobel Peace Prize for this year. Considering what he has replaced, he does look like a ray of hope, but it is all a little premature, isn’t it? The poll on the Guardian Website thinks so, (as of writing this post). Click on the poll image to cast your own vote […]

Gentrified Patriachal Resistance

Twitter is an effective outlet for my stream of conscious, it sits there asking, “what’s new”, some posts get cross posted to Facebook, but almost none of them make it to UrbanWorkbench as a post. In response to Richard Florida’s tweet this morning, “The greatest obstacles to local resilience are the rigid and inflexible policies […]

Urban Farming and Zoning Bylaws

Earlier this year, I suggested that the City of Castlegar look into changing the zoning bylaw, which prohibits the growing of crops in residential areas. The feedback I got from a number of people was that I was overstating the law, or questioning whether the law would ever be enforced.

badseed.jpgI believe that a law not enforced is not worth having, or more appropriately, it should not be applied in a discretionary manner. Last week an article in the Kansas City Star caught my attention. This article describes the trials of an Urban Farm called “Bad Seed Farm” in Kansas City.

The Changing Face of Society as Fuel Prices Rise

Christopher Steiner is one of a number of recent authors who have considered the future of everything from cars, Walmart, delivery services and the suburbs as the price of oil based fuels increase.