Fuelling the Games: City gardens

Fuelling the Games 2What about growing our own?

Part of the London 2012 sustainable food strategy is to leave a long-lasting legacy of awareness in London. Capital Growth, a project established by the local government, offers Londoners financial incentives to reclaim unused urban spaces – school yards, railway yards, canal banks, and especially the rooftops of residential and commercial buildings – to create vegetable gardens that will help supply the Games with locally grown fruit and veg, and, after the Games are over, the local community. Residents sign up on a website to be matched with available plots, and the city provides tools, compost, training and financial incentives – £1,000 ($1,600) for each flat roof space converted – to get going. Training includes food-growing courses in Regent’s Park, community bee-keeping, and even how to grow produce to sell to local restaurants and at market stalls. The goal is 2,012 new local gardens by the end of 2012, but if the idea takes off, the capital’s 100 square kilometres of roof space alone could help Londoners become more self-sufficient and live more sustainably.

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