Vertical Gardening: Proposal to convert urban cities (Karachi and Lahore) to Eco cities

Abdullah Ismail, Environmental Chemist, PTA SZ Environmental Society

An Ecocity is a human settlement focused on natural ecosystems' self-supporting resilient structure and work. Without consuming more (renewable) energy than it produces, without creating more waste than it can assimilate and without being harmful to itself or surrounding habitats, the eco-city provides its residents with balanced abundance. The ecological effect of its inhabitants reflects planetary supporting lifestyles; its social structure reflects universal values of justice, justice and equal equity.

As a third world country we are not fully implement the concept of eco cities, but we can start with a little initiative and little investment. Like we can reduce our noise pollution and clean atmosphere by making vertical gardens on the streets, bridges, and roadside.

Mexico City starts the project named The Via Verde project has focused on “turning Mexico City’s grey to green” through the construction of vertical gardens on columns along the PerifĂ©rico highway, which rings the central city. They “produce enough oxygen for more than 25,000 residents, filter more than 27,000 tons of harmful gas yearly, capture more than 5,000kg of dust, and process more than 10,000 kg of heavy metals”. Meanwhile, China is building Nanjing Green Towers, which will provide 25 tons of CO2 absorption each year and will produce about 60 kg of oxygen per day. This is a much-needed outcome as Nanjing has one of the lowest air quality levels in China.

Karachi city has the highest number of bridges, flyovers and pedestrian bridges in Pakistan. Also, Karachi is most populated, has highest in vehicle pollution and other industrial wastages. Why we not going to utilize this concept of vertical gardening in all the bridges which can play a very major role to reduce the pollution level.

Some Major Benefits Of Vertical Gardening:

Keep temperature down:

You create an extra layer of insulation by building a vertical garden against a wall facing the sun, which keeps the heat out and reduces the temperature within your house. Studies have shown that a vertical garden 's surface can be up to 10 degrees cooler because it absorbs the heat from the sun and slows down the flow of air.

Improves Air Quality:

Vertical gardens, in addition to being a beautiful, space-saving and sustainable addition to our cities, are natural air filter that help create a healthier climate. The plants take the carbon dioxide out of the air in the gardens and substitute it with oxygen.

Reduce Carbon Foot Print:

If your vertical garden is growing fruit, vegetables and herbs you’re helping the environment by minimizing your impact on it. Firstly, because you’re reducing the travel miles of your homegrown fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs to next to zero and secondly, you’ll be using your car less to travel to buy groceries because you’re growing them in your own backyard. Vertical gardens also help offset your carbon footprint emissions because the plants absorb carbon dioxide and produce oxygen.

These all steps can be done by the government commitment and initiative. We request the government to take some serious steps to save our cities and make them environment friendly and sustainable.

About the Author: He is an Environmental Chemist committed to work for better & green environment through my blogs and knowledge. He has Bachelor's Degree in Applied Chemistry following with Master's Degree in Environmental Sciences. He is also engaged in water and wastewater treatment industry from last 5 years.

 

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