UNIV 201: Flex Assignment
Nine-Billion By Twenty Fifty
January sixth, a workshop with a new theme: One in seven lack food security
Sustainability, I question heavily, with nine billion by twenty-fifty.
Where does the future rest? What strategy can we implement?
No time for warring over water or killing off the trees, I see
Communities living like vultures—that’s the kind of culture
That brings about added misery
Here in the Americas, where buffalo used to roam,
Merchants and hunters brought profit to their homes
Though, within centuries, a species vanished—
Greed managed to leave the wilderness famished.
Three centuries downstream, our habits have remained—
I begin to learn about unsustainability and all its pains

January twenty-third, a word on production by John Basarab,
Illuminating the battle between cattle and the vegetarian iconoclasts
John stakes his claim on the benefits of beef
With a sixteen percent reduction in its carbon release
Nutrient packed per cubic bovine
The B-twelve, zinc, and protein is something sublime
Not an option through wilted greens—
Sirloins and burgers are paramount to our needs.
This practice adds two-hundred million in paper greens
And with drone surveillance added to genomic tweaks
Our sum is set to modify and supersize our breeds…

Then I pause to reflect, as certain neurons connect
Recalling the moment when something I read struck me to vet
Any claims that I met supporting meat-intensive diets
Some riot to oppose the abuse—
Calves torn from mothers then torn into dinner
Billions of ruminants processed into food—
The line between profit and sadism is evidently thinner
There is predator and prey, a natural loop;
Chimpanzees hunt other primates as the fox does in the chicken coop
I understand the natural order, though our method is borderline mad
Production lines objectify the animals in our care
Worth nothing more than a side of fries, with ungulates to spare.
More facts emerge from Jonathan Folley at National Geographic
Where our story is told, the issue of agriculture is tragic:
Our transport methods and emission of methane?
Our passport to climate destruction—so how will the future function?
Runoff from manure and fertilizer makes my eyes grow wider
Makes my mind grow wiser, makes me take off my blinding visor
To see the unsustainability; see the relief that we desperately need
for the nine-billion people of twenty-fifty
A week goes by, still stuck in the thinking stress
Shifting the globe to eat cattle less—time to put my inquiry skills to the test
We are introduced to the beauty of the Triple Bottom Line:
People, Planet, and Profit
Dealing with the social, the environmental, and the economic
Thank you, John Elkington, for a valuable insight,
Our mentors and sources bring issues to light
It might be the tight finish to our struggle; and though the keys fumble
I unlock the code and emerge as winner, no longer labelled as a beginner
It’s time to take action, plant my foot, cultivate my idea
Eliminate conflict, poverty, and viral diseases,
Provide security for each Tanzanian; solve the equation to balance the meal

February sixth, our Herbarium director makes a statement:
Monoculture is sure to bring about devastation.
We must diversify not only our species but also our nation, because
Three of the four-thousand edible crops comprise sixty percent of our nutritional intake
To maximize energy and minimize fuel, we’ll have to localize variety,
Perform ecological propriety, and bring a spectrum of sustenance to malnourished societies
I find a solution, in the midst of a lecture: vertical farming to each city sector
Vertical farming is local and efficient, has botanical richness,
And the reduced growing cycle will strengthen our mission
Planting forty-five head of lettuce in one barrel—now listen:
Connect a drain system to the roof to utilize the heavenly hydrogen monoxide,
Connect to an aeration chamber to spray the fine roots inside
In less than a minute, your root hairs are misted
Perfecting minimal water drainage—and we still aren’t finished
Regulate the pH, the chemical composition in pieces per million
Transition through the barrels for equilibrium
Photons catalyze some glucose production, within a few weeks you’ve got lettuce for munching,
basil and dill for spicing, tomatoes for slicing,
All with recycled water to create something inviting
Saving money and teaching good habits, applying organics
Removing panic, teaching children to manage their own destiny—
Now, my quest, it seems, is how will we apply columnar ecology to the masses
With so many lacking food security, and nine-billion people by twenty-fifty
We’re seeing landfills grow faster than perennials,
So, we’re turning to the next generation: Motivated Millennials
The children of the Information Age, sprinkling knowledge and innovation like sage,
With aeroponics powered by light-emitting-diodes powered by optics
Powered by high goals powered by the souls
Of university students who wish to make an impact
Who wish to keep our planet intact through an altruistic attitude
Who create, innovate, and design the future of food.