Ontario’s greenhouse production outgrows energy infrastructure

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Why not use solar and burn wood and build Green houses on our reservations to give young people jobs and a better diet instead of building in the uSA?

In response to "Green Houses Up North" http://betterfarming.com/comment/16448#comment-16448

Yes, I agree.

Sustainability is not created by shipping food into a community from far away at huge expense. Rural and Far North need safe, nutritious, affordable food, which usually means grow as much locally as can be achieved.

Instead, 75% of the pre-school children in Nunavut don't eat on any particular day because there is no food in the house. About 66% of families have food insecurity. Some are forced to do their "grocery shopping" at the municipal dump, scavaging for rotten or expired food that had been thrown out.

Growing your own food creates jobs and well being through having a clear purpose in life. Unfortunately, unemployment in rural and Northern communities ranges from 15% to over 90%. No wonder there is rampant substance abuse and suicide.

This bad situation continues to occur in Canada, the 6th richest nation on this planet. No wonder the UN Special Envoy for Aboriginals says that Canada's aboriginals are the worst off of any aboriginal group on the planet.

I have developed a 2 story chicken coop, 10 ft x 10 ft, that can feed chicken to 27 people per year; all run by solar power alone, good for weather from -60 deg C to + 40 deg C. That chicken will go nicely with the greens from your greenhouses. Food for all.

Glenn Black
Small Flock Poultry Farmers of Canada

Ontario Power generation produces electricity with an efficiency of about 30%. The rest of the energy is waste heat pushed into the air or water, causing environmental degradation.

Nuclear power is even worse, for only 0.75% of the nuclear energy in the fuel pellets is used, then the fuel is "spent" and needs to be stored for 300,000 years while it decomposes the other 99.25% of nuclear energy the fuel pellets contain.

Alternatively, agriculture and similar systems that can use low level energy sources (eg. greenhouses) can generate CHP (Combine Heat & Power) or CCHP (Combined Cooling Heat & Power) with cycle efficiencies as high as 91%; three times better (and therefore 3 times cheaper) than OPG.

What are you waiting for?

Agricultural waste added to municipal waste creates increased methane production for internal combustion engines to produce electricity and heat, avoiding garbage producing landfill methane that is 37 times more powerful than CO2 as a greenhouse gas.

The by-product from digestion of municipal and agricultural waste is top soil and squeaky clean recyclables. With humus levels in most North American farm soils as low as 3.5% (instead of what they should be, 28%), extra topsoil can be beneficial to farmers and others, instead of using chemical fertilizers.

Glenn Black
Small Flock Poultry Farmers of Canada

Living in the heart of "greenhouse country" I see they use coal,recycled wood (pallets,ect. ground up),NG,Bunker oil and there is quite a few hundred acres of Miscunith grasses grown but a lot of it which is harvested in the spring has been sitting in fields rotting for a few years. NG Turbinelooks like best alternative as even in summer they had some heat at night to keep disease down. Locally there is also a bio-digested providing electric power from greehouse waste,dog food,ect. Like all energy sources there is a downside too bio digesters as liquid left over is a good fertilizer but many transport loads are produced a day and it smells worse than any livestock manure. Presently most of it is dumped in hog barn pits or lagoons . The big greenhouse operations have sister farms in US,Mexico and some in Spain,just good business sense. I am told Ontario is not the most economical place too site greenhouses now . When you have 3,000 temporary foreign workers in town and around 3,000 acres of greenhouse vegetable production it changes things a lot . Most all are on municipal water and draw at night too fill reservoirs as system can't provide enough pressure/draw in the day.Kind of ironic too see the black coal smoke coming out of greenhouse boilers and 80+ wind turbines in the background. kg kimball

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