On Earth Day, Sacramento residents decided to take action in their yards, both front and back. In Oak Park, Environment and Agriculture Taskforce (EAT) Sacramento, a network of activists and organizations, issued a report and called on the city to "modernize" chicken laws by allowing residents to keep a limited number of egg-laying hens. The group also layed out part of a roadmap for achieving greater food security, as well as adressing global warming.
The group also suggested that the city could do more to support and encourage more "green thumbs" through continued gardening trainings, zoning changes, and better use of vacant lands. Citing the need to "fix", or capture carbon dioxide pollution, the group called for more Carbon Gardens and Carbon Farms throughout the city and county. The movement is definitely catching on. First Lady Maria Shriver and First Lady Michelle Obama have planted their organic, or Carbon Gardens, in the last month.
Members of EAT Sacramento have already begun discussions with councilmembers, hoping to build support for a practical chicken law by summer.
“Creating a local environment that allows people to feed their families will make Sacramento a much more sustainable city,” said Sacramento Councilmember Rob Fong.
The report, "The Kitchen Sink: Building a Healthy Food Community", suggests that local governments, in tandem with residents and an existing network of organizations need to:
(1) Help residents reclaim their yards through updating outdated ordinances on water use, animals, and land use.
(2) Build more community food networks through continued support and incentives.
(3) Make Sacramento the carbon capital by piloting projects throughout the city and county, and supporting gardening and composting trainings.
For more information about efforts to modernize chicken laws, visit www.EATsacramento.org.
George Jackson is an intern with Pesticide-Free Sacramento
Photos courtesy of Katie Towers