The assignment: Implement 7 projects, one project per day consecutively, that address environmental issues based on your observations and quick and intuitive responses.
The problem: My neighborhood totally lacks green space.
Background: I grew up in a relatively rural area of northern Maryland. Prior to moving to the New York area I lived in Seattle, a very green city both literally and technologically. This summer I moved to Jersey City to attend the MFADT program at Parsons. The hardest thing to adjust to in my new neighborhood has been the lack of green space.
Why care about green space? For me personally, it has mainly to do with aesthetics. I feel more happy and calm when there are a lot of plants around. There are, however, many reasons to support green space in urban areas. According to research from the Environmental Health Research Foundation, green spaces can provide the following benefits:
- Filter pollutants from air and water
- Prevent erosion
- Reduce the impact of carbon emisions
- Reduce heat in urban areas
- Provide recreational areas and community spaces
- Provide habitat for wildlife
- Promote physical activity
- Reduce human stress levels
Day 1 – Trashturf
My neighborhood has a lot of litter and not a lot of turf. Let’s solve two problems at once! Trash turf can be easily created by collecting the garbage that’s laying around, gluing it to some cardboard, and painting it green! As a side benefit, I’m pretty sure all my neighbors are terrified of me now.