A city of change and realizations all on its own, San Francisco knows a thing or two about change, realization and sustainable growth. As one drives, walks, or BARTs it around town you can witness the thousands of billboards and signs clearly labeling the city as such a place…..”The sustainable city.”
We hear so much about San Francisco being the green, sustainable city, but what was nice to learn upon my most recent visit, was that San Francisco itself is also… well… human! I come to find out that San Francisco hasn’t always been the greenest most sustainable city out there and has a past ridden with dumping garbage in the bay and on the beaches and having raw sewage spill into the sea. The point of the story is really to show that how upon realizing this about San Francisco, I began to give myself a little slack and use it and its ability to change and realize new sustainable ways, was in a sense a new outlet to learn steps towards my own sustainable personal growth.
In the early 19th century and way into even the 20th century, the city of San Francisco and its surrounding Bay Area, did some bad stuff! It not only dumped its trash right on the beach, but it let raw sewage spew into the ocean, the bay and the wetlands. In the 20th century government and private enterprises were filling the bay with gravel and mud from nearby mining causing waters to shallow, wetlands to erode, thousands of species of flora and fauna to be endangered. The waters of the Bay to this day are still some of the shallowest waters for bays and ships have to carefully maneuver with maps of the deepest spots to get into the Oakland port. In addition, the port still needs to be dredged on a regular basis to prevent the silt from build up and ships not being able to enter.
But! The moral of the story is about change, growth and realization and today San Francisco is one of the most progressive cities in the world. Its ever changing and evolving citizens realize the need for change and growth and are extremely good at taking action on these realizations which makes it an incredible inspirational city and was for me pivotal to my recent growth! It’s basically as “green” as a city gets and as liberal and accepting of a place can be, it exudes change and sustainability in everything it does and is, like a child growing into adulthood nicely. San Francisco is the epitome of sustainable growth and the evolution of it.
And as far as food & farming and the artisanal food movement–it doesn’t get much better than the Bay Area. The respect for food and food roots and sustainable food practices is profound here. The devotion to food in this city of course starts with what some would consider the best agricultural conditions around, these ideal growing regions with its plethora of micro climates and pockets of cool and hot with fertile soils. An extremely educated, diverse and evolving population in the area catapults the food scene into an entirely different level than most and with some of the most famous food people in the business, restaurants, wines, artisanal breads…you name it. Most of the sustainable food movements started here as well; CSA’s, Slow Food, Commercial organic agriculture, Fair-trade grocers etc.
In the end it’s clear that San Francisco and the Bay area is and will continue to be an inspiration for growth, realizations and sustainability. It’s an incredible city that can push our minds to great realizations through its inspiring way of simply being an evolving place where green, just means right!
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