TRUE "HOMELAND" SECURITY, HOW SAFE IS YOUR FOOD AND FUEL SUPPLY IN THE EVENT THE GRID AND FOOD STOCKS FAIL?
By: Saneh T. Boothe CEO of Eden Project and Cornucopia Enterprises http://www.cornucopia-enterprise.com
Co-Author: Ben B. Boothe Sr., International Consultant (USIS, World Bank), CEO Boothe & Associates, Appraisals and Consultants http://www.benboothe.com
Consider the following serious question, and think about it, consider it carefully with calm deliberation.
If trucking or other transportation delivery were curtailed, or some natural or political event stopped the flow of food and fuel shipments to your city, how many days could you survive? Please consider the implications, because this question has multi layered answers and almost innumerable social implications. How many days?
On the right is a photo of the 60 mile long “truck jam" that lasted for 11 days. Supplies of food, fuel and even water ceased for 2 weeks in China. What if this happens in the USA near your city?
One of the facts is that if trucking were curtailed, or our interstate highway system made ineffective, shipments of food and fuelwould cease as well. This would affect rail and other shipping. Without shipments of fuel, oil, gas, diesel, coal, the utility system would suffer the same shortfall as your pantry. You would not have fuel for travel, or electricity for cooking, air conditioning, hot water, communications or lighting. How many days could your firewood, charcoal, or candles provide for you?
A recent meeting of environmental and social experts concluded that Los Angeles has a food stockpile of 2 days, after which the grocery shelves would be bare. We suggest to you that New York City has 3 days of food stockpiles. Chicago 3 days. Dallas 2 days, Phoenix 2 days, St.Louis 3 days, Indianapolis 3 days. Oklahoma City,3 days. The average city in America has a backlog of fuel and food of 3 days.
The average household would run out of fresh meat, milk, dairy and vegetables in 2 days. Canned goods might last 4 days and rice, dry beans, wheat, cornmeal, oats, would last a little longer. Alternative fuels for cooking would become scarce and if the electric system had no fuel to operate, a typical American household would be thrust backwards 130 years, and be forced to “camp”, forage, and improvise in a daily effort for survival. This is exactly what happened in Japan with the tidal wave.
The issue of food production, distributed energy and independent sources of essential elements for survival is a matter of critical national security. It is key to our national defense. We are dependent upon a concentrated (some say monopolized) supply chain for energy and delivery of three of the essential elements of survival that could collapse. The ancient Egyptians, Zoroastrians, Greeks, knew how important connection to the "essentials"were. Modern scholars, government officials and scientists continue to reaffirm the essential elements of survival. Fire (energy), Water, Air, Land (necessary for food production).
of the most profound violation of Homeland Security and threats to the security of our way of life, in our nation’s history. Should our central systems of transportation and delivery of food and fuel be disrupted, then not only food and energy, but water, health care, emergency needs, even fuel and food for our defense is at risk.
President George W. Bush ordered:
“The Secretary of Homeland Security will report and enhance detection and characterization of an attack. The Secretary of Homeland Security in coordination with other government agencies shall develop a coordinated agriculture and food specific response plan that will be integrated into the National Response Plan to insure roles of Federal, State, local and private sector partners, to stabilize food production and the food supply”. PRESIDENTIAL DIRECTIVES OF PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH TO HOMELAND SECURITY. 9/9/2008
More Questions for you.If transportation, shipping were disrupted, and the food, water and public utility system failed, no refrigeration, no TV or radio, no gasoline, what would your life be like? Can you imagine that? Look at the face of the Japanese man in the photo above and perhaps you can get an idea.
How would you feed your family? How would you make money? How would you get food and medicine? How would you stay warm, dry or cool? How would you care for and protect those you love? And consider this. Our police and fire departments, our army and pilots would be facing the same questions.
In the Los Angeles area, 400,000 people experience ‘food insecurity’ on a daily basis, according to the LA Dept of Public health. This is in “ordinary” times! How many morecould be impacted if there was no food, water, electricity, communications or transportation available?
How safe would the streets of your city be, if there was no food in the stores, no gas and no electricity? How long would it be before armed gangs started invading property in search of "essentials"?
“Three days is our average food supply around the modernized world, i.e., for cities and their supermarkets. Long-term food stocks have plummeted: Cereal stocks are at their lowest level in 30 years," reported World-Watch institute in its most recent Vital Signs report.
“This is exacerbated by increasingly weirder weather, compounded by the oil price/supply pressure on food. What can interfere with the three-day situation are truckers on strike (as in Europe), extended/repeated power outages, and the inability of the work force to commute to work.” Jan Lundberg CULTURE CHANGE, January 2012.
Part of the problem is that the world demand for food stocks, water and energy has in a growing number of places, exceeded the supply. Note the following report from World Watch:
“Grain Harvest Sets Record, But Supplies Still Tight,” article number VST101. “Following several years of declining harvests, the world’s farmers reaped a record 2.316 billion tons of grain. Despite this jump of 95 million tons, or about 4 percent, over the previous year, commodity analysts estimate that voracious global demand will consume all of this increase and prevent governments from replenishing cereal stocks that are at their lowest level in 30 years.” JAN 10, 2012 WORLD-WATCH INSTITUTE
Helen Peck, in her report on business reliance in the food sector (2006), identified a big gap in the preparedness for business continuity management (BCM) as very few companies had adopted a proactive or preventative stance to crisis management and operated mostly in the reactive mode. One of the conclusions of her report was that the drive for efficiency and the “just-in-time” philosophy used by the food industry has progressively reduced stock levels throughout the supply chain - with the resulting damage to its resilience when an emergency occurs.
Unfortunately, this lack of preparation is widespread, in states, municipalities, and family units.
“Food is a fundamental requisite for human existence. An agrarian society shows the simplistic form of existence where agriculture forms the core of the society and is the prime means of support and sustenance. That, however, no longer remains the foundation of most of today’s developed economies where food chains are increasingly becoming complex and multi-tiered. The chain starts with agriculture and ends ultimately, with household consumption. However, the numbers of entities between these ends encompass geographical, economic, political and social extremes. This compounded over uncertainty occurring from natural disasters, climate changes, epidemics and terrorist threats place the food supply chain in a particularly vulnerable position.” A. Deep, Business School, Loughborough University, UK May 4, 2009.
President George W. Bush, by his executive order, was suggesting that our government should engage in planning and take steps to prepare, or prevent food, energy, water and transportation crises. The risk of the above factors has continued to increase since his “order” in 2008. Experts from around the world have made suggestions, most of which have been ignored. One approach called “scenario planning” is described as follows: “Scenario planning was described by Ringland as a set of processes for improving the quality of educated guesses and also for deciding what their implications are. Although not formally called Scenario Planning, its origins can be traced in versions of systems thinking employed during world war two, where it was used in conjunction with other complex analysis techniques as a military tool to develop strategies during the war. The history of scenario planning is documented in detail by Schwartz, Ven der Heiden and Ringland but it is generally accepted that scenario planning was pioneered by Hermann Kahn in the Research and Development Institute (RAND) set up after the war.” A. Deep, Business School, Loughborough University, UK May 4, 2009
A disruption in the food chain does not have to be some natural disaster such as a Tsunami or Earthquake. It can be something as simple as a price increase at the fuel pump.
There are solutions and some of the most relevant suggest a broad, national effort to expand and encourage the following:
* Near urban food production and energy production using campuses of Greenhouses and High Tunnels WITH SPECIAL DESIGN CHARACTERISTICS.
* Food and energy production not dependent upon public utilities
* Food production not dependent upon public water systems
* Food production not dependent on mass farming production
* Food production that can continue through hot and cold seasons
* Alternative, disbursed, near-urban water production, using desalination, powered by renewable energy.
* Alternative and widely disbursed renewable energy solar panels, wind turbines, and solar water heating, to provide energy for the above food production suggestions.
Alfonz Viszoray, an engineer from Hungary,has been a leading consultant in advising“EDEN GARDENSPROJECT” with ideas for solutions and provided this visual concept of a campus incorporating many innovative odeas. Eden has taken this concept and refined it further, stressing food, desalination, and energy production. Alfonz has said: "Saneh Boothe's Eden Garden's Project is a good concept aimed at national security and homeland security. We admire this idea and consider it good for the country for food, and energy security."
LEARN FROM JAPAN’S CRISIS:
Consider the disaster that occurred in Japan after the ocean floor earthquake. Power was lost. Food quickly disappeared. Water supplies either were polluted or had major line ruptures. Transportation of food and supplies literally stopped overnight and the people there were thrust into primitive survival mode, in Japan, arguably the world’s most organized and systematic cultural system.
For the hundreds of billions of dollars that Japan has spent trying to deal with this tragic disaster, or for the billions Japan spent to develop central nuclear utility systems, and central food distribution systems, Japand as a nation, could have put solar panels and neighborhood wind turbines, and solar water heating systems on every home, every commercial building, every hospital, every prison, and every retail building in Japan.
Randy Grissom, Dean of Santa Fe Community College said: "A distributed, disbursed power system such as 'Eden Gardens Project' is very useful in guiding us."
Eden's Gardens projects, distributed in cities in Japan, would have “saved” Japan the losses of this disaster. In addition, thousands of food production and energy productioncampuses such as Eden Garden Projects, near urban centers would have provided food locally without the need for “food chain transportation systems”. Thousands of people could have been saved the threat of hunger, energy loss, and disruptions in their lives.
And, of course, this system would have savedthe nuclear radiation pollution which occurred!
This system will be independent of mass farming and giant food production systems. This system is the best and most effective homeland security approach for the defense and survival of our people that has been proposed. In addition, Saneh T. Boothe’s “Eden Gardens Project” combined with Ben Boothe’s concept of “distributed power generation” represent the most progressive concepts for food, water, and energy security
Near Urban food production, utilizing high tunnels and green houses, powered by wind, PV solar & solar water heating with hot water lines buried underground for sub soil heating, with 10 to50 acre campuses, that produce algae, clean water, fertilizer, high nutrition foods, organic farming and conservation of water by use of drip irrigation is a concept relevent and timely. The algae ponds can alsoincrease the production offish or shrimp. A pond that is 100 x 100 can produce over $200,000 per year in fish or shrimp products. A typical 50 by 500 ft “high tunnel” can produce tons of algea and oil, but also hundreds of thousands of dollarsin food per year...fresh organic food. An algae pond of 5 acres with tanks and proper engineering can produce tons of algae and oil, we estimate at $489,000+ per year in food by-products, oil, and organic fertilizer. Plus sourcing water locally with "Eden's" independent desalination plants to give a redundant supply of fresh water from an otherwise useless resource (underground salt, or brackish water). Let us not forget that water depletion, pollution, and mineralization is, like deforestation, a lead into desertification. Water may be one of the most urgent issues the nation faces, with 98% of the water in the USA non potable and largely brackish. Combining desaliniation of water, is an important feature. This national security solution can solve a huge security risk. We need these food production campus units near every urban center in the USA. The national security risk is too varied and too high to avoid implementing this alternative. Dangers and security risks to our nation can be avoided, and must be minimized by “Eden Food Production” campuses. Depending upon the food and product growth mix, we estimate that a $2,250,000 investment in the small (see chart) Eden Garden Project will yield an annual net return from $600,000 to $800,000. In the event of crisis or emergency need the net return can be greater, because we would upscale the production, desalination volume pumping and availablilty.
CONSIDER TRANSPORTATION COSTS AND ASSOCIATED RISKS:
“Approximately 21 million trucks transport products across the United States every day. Keeping containers secure is a huge undertaking as there can be many opportunities for tampering.” Source: USDA.
Consider how trucking, has become the most concentrated form of food transportation. Note the typical supply chain dependence upon trucking and highways.
Typical food supply chain transportation scenario:
21,000,000 miles per day, by truck.
Consider the cost and dependence upon fuel caused by this huge dependence upon trucking and other forms of transportation. Consider the pollution caused by 21,000,000 trucks running daily.
Consider the risk of highway safety, the risk of weather, earthquakes, floods, terrorist attacks, political strife and sabotage on our highway system. A disbursed group of 70 individuals, could block highways, destroy bridges, or simply create traffic blockages, on most of the interstate highway systems in America in one coordinated day of effort. Consider the further risk to the transportation system should fuel prices rise beyond economic ability to make truck delivery feasible.
The average vegetable in the USA travels 2,000 miles, by truck, to the grocer's shelf.
The concept of food miles originated in the early 1990s in the United Kingdom. It was conceived by Professor Tim Lang, at the Sustainable Agriculture Food and Environment (SAFE) Alliance and first appeared in print in a report “The Food Miles Report: The dangers of long-distance food transport”. Some scholars believe that as increases in the miles food travels risk of failure and disruption is more and more likely. Itis due to the globalization of trade; the focus of food supply bases into fewer, larger districts; drastic changes in delivery patterns; the increase in processed and packaged foods; and making fewer trips to the supermarket.
Business leaders such as Skidmore Professor James Kennelly have adopted food miles as a model for understanding inefficiency in a food supply chain. Wal-Mart, famously focused on cost-saving efficiency, was an early adopter of food miles as a profit-maximizing strategy. More recently, Wal-Mart has embraced the environmental benefits of supply chain efficiency as well. In 2006, Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott said, "The benefits of the strategy are undeniable, whether you look through the lens of greenhouse gas reduction or the lens of cost savings. What has become so obvious is that 'a green strategy' provides better value for our customers".
“Wegman's, a 71-store chain across the northeast, has purchased local foods for over 20 years. In their case, the produce manager in each store controls the influx of local foods, the relationships with the local farms are not centrally controlled."
A recent study led by Professor Miguel Gomez (Applied Economics and Management), at Cornell University and supported by the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future found that in many instances, the supermarket supply chain did much better in terms of food miles and fuel consumption for each pound compared to farmers markets. It suggests that selling local foods through supermarkets may be more economically viable and sustainable than through farmer’s markets.” SOURCE: WIKIPEDIA 2012
However, none of these scenarios considers disruption from the many security threats already mentioned. Nor do they seriously consider the threat of abrupt increases in fuel costs, terrorist attack, natural disaster and the possibility of disruption of deliveries. Most of their solutions focus on warehouse destruction or poisoning.
QUESTION: “Is it logical to pick an unripe green tomato, spray it with chemicals to make it turn red to appear ripe. Then ship it in its hard unripe condition 2,000 miles, so that a consumer can eat a vegetable that is not naturally ripened and has less vitamins, minerals and natural sugars, when there is a shortage of water, fuel, and food, in our world?"
Some nations, such as Dubai, fly in all of their vegetables for the UAE, daily. However, even there, that oil-developed society, is taking steps to grow all vegetables, within 5 years, in massive high tunnel green houses, near its urban population centers. Financial Considerations of “long distance” food distribution, especially during times of energy shortages and price increases.
ASSUME AN AVERAGE DAILY TRAVEL OF ONLY 100 MILES (DELIVER ITEM 50 MILES ROUND TRIP), THE COST IN THIS VERY CONSERVATIVE SCENARIO, CALCULATES AS FOLLOWS: MILES TRAVELED: 2,100,000,000 (THAT IS TWO BILLION ONE HUNDRED MILLION MILES) PER DAY. AT 10 MILES PER GALLON THAT FIGURES 210,000,000 GALLONS OF FUEL PER DAY, AT $3.00 PER GALLON, THE COST IS $630,000,000 ($630 MILLION DOLLARS) PER DAY. $1,821,000,000 PER MONTH OR $21,852,000,000 (21.8 BILLION DOLLARS A YEAR IN FUEL). ALTERNATIVELY, FIGURE IT BY MILEAGE ALLOWANCE AT .85 CENTS PER MILE.
The “Eden Project” Campus System is a solution. Cost effective, Rapid Build Time, Long Term,10 point Solution:
1. Near urban food and energyproduction in green houses and high tunnels to save transportation risk and costs
2. Utilization of drip irrigation to cut water use by 1/3 TO 1/10
3. Utilization of solar energy and wind energy to operate irrigation wells, pumps, fans and lights
4. Utilization of desalination systems, powered by wind and solar, to create fresh water from salty or brackish water, and thus produce a new source of potable water.
5. This will allow longer periods of “growing season” and multiply food production.
6. Organic and algae food production will save chemical usage and produce healthier food stocks, of higher protein and more efficiently than "row crops".
7. Preservation of water, energy, will cause food prices to decrease.
8. Use of renewable energy creates a positive benefit upon the world’s environment
9. Algae production will produce not only food, but also fertilizer and oil.
10. Water tank fish farming, fed with algae, using desalinated water, pumped and produced within the "Eden Gardens Park".
Education, research and development, as well as demonstrating USDA’s research results that for every square foot of greenhouse or high tunnel space, $7 to $10 in crop revenues will be produced. (Therefore, a 120,000-s.f. greenhouse area 3-acre tract, will make up to $800,000 to $1,200,000 per year in crop income (algea and food) , substantially higher than traditional ‘open field’ farming) Production and sale of healthier, more nutritious food, and having good food stocks available, even when the utility grid and transportation grids have failed.
When I was a young pilot, my instructor told me: “An airplane has redundant ignition systems, because if one fails the other will keep the airplane running and keep you alive.”
Redundancy is a sound military strategy, meaning always have back up, especially in essential elements for survival. What is more important to our national survival than food, water and energy? Redundancy is what Homeland Security and the Pentagon have embraced on strategic elements necessary for our national security.
Thus, we suggest that redundant food, water and energy supplies be disseminated throughout the nation through “Eden GardenProject” campuses as designed by Cornucopia Project Enterprises. (www.cornucopia-enterprise.com) and powered by alternate renewable energy as advised by Wind Inc. (www.wind-inc.com) and Boothe and Associates Consultants (http://www.benboothe.com).
* It would seem logical that a hospital would want on site redundant sources of power, food and water, in the event of disruption.
*The same would be relevant for a university campus, or a prison.
* The same holds true for our communities throughout the nation. These “Eden” projects that produce food, drinking water and energy are a foundation block in this proposal for national security. As compared to other “defense” measures, this is not only an inexpensive route of redundancy, it can actually be a profit center, making a return on investment while enhancing the security of the nation.
Ralph Vigil, Chairman of the New Mexico Acequia Commission said: “In the event of natural disaster, political turmoil, terrorism, if County, State and City public water systems fail, the acequia system, will continue, because the water is held by individual land owners, and has functioned for hundreds of years as a redundant water supply. This is one reason we believe that water rights should always be attached to the land and landowners, because in diversifying the power for the common good, we keep back up water sources available. We have reviewed and endorse the Eden Project because it is consistent with our philosophy of survival and respect for the essential elements.”
In summary, let me ask you, if you are running a dairy, military base, a hospital, a prison, a university, or if you are the Mayor of a city. “How many days can your institution or community function? How long without food, water and energy does your institution have, if disruptions to transportation, or energy caused by terrorism, war, economics, or natural disaster, disrupts your traditional food, water and energy delivery chains? How many days?”
*This article andcontentsiscopyrighted 2012 document not to be copied, quoted, or utilized without permission from the author.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact the “Eden Gardens Project” at firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 800-379 8048 ext 103 Request an “Eden Project” proposal, or campus design and layout, complete with algae ponds, greenhouses, wind, solar, desalination plant, sub soil heating, acequia concept, food canning, seed preservation, research and development, and completely energy-independent system for water, food and energy production, free from current risks to the food supply chain. Request a meeting with Saneh Boothe or Eden Garden Project officers. We will make public appearances for interested quality groups, but require that interested groups be responsible for travel and venue arrangements.