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Mar 29, 2014

This Enormous Rolling City Is Designed To Re-Plant The Desert

Posted by in categories: engineering, habitats

Adele Peters — Fast Company

Every year, more than 46,000 square miles of arable land turns to desert. As deserts spread–a process that keeps moving faster thanks to climate change and practices like clear-cutting–the UN estimates that more than 1 billion people will be directly affected. Many of them, living in places like Northern Africa and rural China, are already struggling with poverty, so the loss of farmland would be especially hard to handle.

One potential answer: An enormous mobile oasis that roams over drylands planting seeds. The Green Machine, originally designed by Malka Architecture and Yachar Bouhaya Architecture for the Venice Biennale, may some day be rolling around the borders of the Sahara Desert holding back the dust and sand.

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Comments so far

  • Scott on March 30, 2014 7:30 am

    I’m reluctant to leave a comment due to the brainiacs that no doubt cruise this site, but here goes anyway.

    It seems to me that the lack of plants (hence the planting machine) isn’t the root cause of why arable land is turning to desert. Our environment is variable and changes to climate that come as a result of changes in weather patterns is more to the core of why this phenomenon happens. Now obviously clear cutting is not a result of climate change and quite the opposite is true.

    If our climate is changing as a direct result of human activity then when we can no longer adapt to our environment, or adapt it to our needs we will perish. (extinction) If we as a species that is supposedly “intelligent” can’t figure out how to modify our own behavior and better work with our environment instead of being a bunch of children trying to dominate our environment, the we most certainly deserve to perish and make room for a species that can.

    In our high opinion of ourselves as the “only intelligent species” we’ve decided that we singularly deserve to survive at the expense of other species. In my opinion that is our own evolved animal instinct over-ruling our supposedly superior abstract mind. Now I’m certainly no authority on human behavior and motivation, but I am a contemplative person and took to heart the phrase “to thine own self be true”. Nope I can’t quote who coined that phrase I’m sure there are a thousand folks on here who can, I’ll let that up to you to do. In my contemplations and self truth I know that most of my “feelings” about the need for humanity to prevail are based in the animal need for survival. Humans among other sentient beings as Primates and Phocoenidae will lay down their own lives to save their young.

    Perhaps we don’t have to perish, but we certainly have to decrease our numbers to bring our own habitation of this Earth in line with it’s ability to sustain us. The ability to do just that would be a true demonstration of the human animal’s intelligence. Short of that we’re just another infestation that this Earth will outlive and recycle our remains into the next “intelligent species”.

    Scott

  • Scott on March 30, 2014 7:38 am

    BTW Bravo to the artist that copied the drive gear and mobile platform images from the United States Apollo / Space Shuttle program. Having worked on the shuttle program for 23 years I recognize those shapes.

    Looks like an off-road Crawler Transporter on steroids. All the 4 X 4 guys are going to be salivating on that picture.

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