How to Enjoy Climate Change: A Hedonistic Approach to a Warming World

“Will there be more and more beaches as the water level changes? Will our cities become as nice as Venice, which has water everywhere?”

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“The world is in great danger,” remarks Richard Ingersoll in an interview with urbanNext. Speaking at the “Architecture: Change of Climate” conference in Pamploma, Spain, the architectural scholar addressed architecture’s role in approaching the growing environmental threats to our planet. While he cites the inherent perils of climate change to both our environment and our society, Ingersoll suggests there might be methods that people could adopt to better prepare themselves for a warmer world and have fun doing it.

“The big job for most people who are concerned about this is how to make the adjustment to climate change attractive,” says Ingersoll in the interview. “Could we become surfers as the water rises up? Will there be more and more beaches as the water level changes? Will our cities become as nice as Venice, which has water everywhere?”

All fantasies aside, Ingersoll believes a range of social tactics to design our future cities might provide populations with a “readiness” to adapt to climate change. One such initiative is urban farming. While eliminating automobiles and indoor heating systems are logical solutions to combatting climate change, Ingersoll recognizes that many people’s lives now insist on these services to function. On the contrary, urban agriculture is a method of introducing a new, immersive and enjoyable activity in one’s life to reduce dependence on mass-produced food.

“It’s not as easy to stop driving an automobile. It’s not as easy to turn the heat off if you don’t have heat in your house, but it is quite easy to grow vegetables, and it’s fun,” says Ingersoll, who has started a campaign to get more people involved in urban farming. “In other words, it’s part of the hedonistic approach to solving climate change.”

Catch the above interview with Ingersoll to learn more about the origins of hedonistic sustainability and urban farming’s potential to curb the effects of climate change.

Cover image is a still from Avi Lewis’ documentary “This Changes Everything” inspired by the book by Naomi Klein.

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