Toolbox for Sustainable City Living

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by Scott Kellogg and Stacy Pettigrew

South End Press

2008

SKU: 9780896087804

 

When people envision food production or toxic cleanups, the last setting most likely imagine is New York City. But with more than half the world's population now residing-and struggling to survive-in cities, we can no longer afford to think of sustainability as something that applies only to forests and fields. We need sustainable living right where so many of us are: in urban neighborhoods. But how do we do it?

That's where this guide comes in. Nine years ago, the Rhizome Collective transformed an abandoned Austin, Texas, warehouse into a sustainability training center. Here, with their first book, two of Rhizome's founders provide step-by-step instructions for city dwellers-those who have never foraged or gardened along with those who have done dumpster-diving and CSAs-with directions for producing our own food, collecting water, managing waste, reclaiming land, and generating energy.

With vibrant illustrations created by a member of the Beehive Collective and descriptive text based on years of experimentation, Stacy and Scott explain how to build and grow with cheap, salvaged, and recycled materials, making the Guide an accessible and relevant tool for all members of the community. This manual enables us to move from envisioning a future with resources for all to living it.

Stacy Pettigrew and Scott Kellogg are part of the Rhizome Collective, an educational and activist organization based in Austin, Texas. Its members received a $200,000 brownfield cleanup grant from the EPA, which they're using to turn a 10-acre dump into an ecological justice park. The bioremediation techniques they developed are being used to remove toxins deposited by the waters of Hurricane Katrina.