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It is now cheaper to grow plants indoors than outdoors, at least for some situations. Conventional farming is resource intensive, uses a lot of land, requires irrigation that evaporates, has to deal with uncertain weather, and has to fight bugs, pests, and infections. Indoor farming had been more resource intensive, simply because lighting cost too much. The price of LEDs has come down dramatically (90% since 2010) and their power output has increased. Irrigation indoors can be more efficient than irrigation outdoors. Weather is a constant, as long as the environmental controls are working. Bugs, pests, and infections exist; but are much more controllable. Put the advantages together and get a 100-fold increase in yield. When a one acre building can produce as much produce as a 100 acre farm and be located within a city, then farms can be redefined. They aren’t likely to replace fields of wheat or corn, but they can grow other foods close to the people who will eat them. Localvores may be buying from factory farms in their neighborhoods. Urbanization enabled, yet again.

(Click on the graph for the link.)

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