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Viraj Puri

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LIVE TED Convo: Join TED Fellow Viraj Puri: What innovative development solutions are most appropriate for your city, region or country?

Viraj will be LIVE answering questions from 1pm - 2:30pm EST

Most of my career has been spent in the broadly defined field of "appropriate technology". Currently I am involved in commercial-scale urban agriculture in New York City. My company, Gotham Greens, is dedicated to growing the highest quality vegetables and culinary herbs for local restaurants and retailers. Gotham Greens designed, built, and now operates the nation’s first commercial scale, urban hydroponic greenhouse facility, located on the rooftop of a manufacturing building in, Brooklyn, NYC. The premium quality, pesticide-free vegetables and herbs is grown in sterile rooftop greenhouses using clean, renewable energy. We’ve selected technically-sophisticated Controlled Environment Agriculture -- a combination of horticultural and engineering techniques -- that lends itself well to the built environment. We believe its an appropriate technology for NYC - a city of 8 million people that imports nearly all of its food. The city lacks arable land but does have many acres of unused available rooftop space.

There are a number of ways to farm responsibly and sustainably. Our methods have been selected based on our unique geographic location. This form of agriculture may not be appropriate for all regions. I believe infrastructure, technological, and development solutions must appropriate for a given geographical, environmental, and cultural context.

What innovative development solutions are most appropriate for your city, region or country?

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