With the Invictus Urban Farms your building has the potential to become a green leader in the sustainability movement and gain LEED credits.
The ability to grow your own food in a small amount of space is going to revolutionize the way we utilize urban spaces. It has the ability to not only deepen your connection with environmental stewardship and personal health but greatly reduce your carbon footprint.
Theresa Hogerheide, a GBCI LEED Technical Specialist with the U.S. Green Building Council, recently wrote an article about the impact that LEED can have on your diet, connecting food systems and animal production with climate change in the following ways:
Carbon Dioxide (CO2)
comes from land clearing and fertilizer application to grow grains to feed animals and humans. There are emissions from farm operations (processing, milling, and farm equipment operation) and food transportation (especially refrigerated)—often large fleets going long distances.
comes from ruminant (for example, cows) digestion. It’s 44% of livestock emissions, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (UNFAO).
Nitrous Oxide (N2O)
is emitted when nitrogen is added to the soil through the use of synthetic fertilizers to grow animal feed and other food products. It is also emitted during the breakdown of nitrogen in livestock manure and urine. N2O has a (100-year) global warming potential of 310.
How Can You Offset Your Greenhouse Gas Emissions?
The UN Food and Agriculture Department has attributed 14.5% of human-induced greenhouse gas emissions to livestock production since 2012, with dairy cattle representing 65% of livestock sector emissions. Growing your own organic food can help offset your greenhouse gas emissions, as it supports local food systems and reduces the miles your food travels to get to your plate and the need/impact of factory food practices.
LEED is working to address these issues through:
LEED for Existing Buildings, includes a credit that rewards projects for using local food/beverages or those with certain certifications.
LEED for Neighborhood Development, has a credit that rewards projects supporting gardens and agriculture.
Pilot Credit 82: Local Food Production is earned when the project team demonstrates onsite food production or partnering with a Community Supported Agriculture program or local farm.