This is an accelerated version of letting nature reclaim disaster zones. Even Chernobyl has been re-occupied by herds of Mongolian ponies, foxes and elderly farmers: nature will out. Well, perhaps it will, but the predictions are that it will come at considerable cost and no time soon, except in abandoned sites. This of course is what this video proposes, but without a time frame.
At one point this entry proposes that by products of the oil industry itself be used as building products: polyethylene and such. Just because this material can be made into fleece and TREK-decks doesn't make it biodegradable.
The tv infomercials from CAPP -- the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers has gone from claiming that the tailings are like yoghurt to showing us cakes of whatever it is: dry biscuity chunks of waste product. It is but a short step to seeing these cakes as potential masonry units. The problem is that we don't know what is in these cakes: ducks can land on them and not be covered in oil, so this is an advance of sorts, and they show grass and trees now planted where old tailings ponds were, but do not mention if there is leaching of minerals and worse into the water table, or if the trees are actually processing any toxins and releasing them in some way: lots of questions, further research needed. I'm sure it is being done, I just have to find it.
Nature reclaims, transience ultimately ends in abandoned human settlement and reclamation. Responds in a particular way to the Human-Industrial relationship aspect of the problem: design specifically for eventual human abandonment and bio-degradation. (Paulo Soleri’s Arcosante comes to mind with this solution) but overall we agree with Stephanie that the toxic component of the relic must be resolved. But polar bears love scratching themselves on old rusty tanks more than bats like windmills.
But this approach isn’t a sustainable transience, an ongoing forever people place, which is what towns and cities do aspire to.
Sustainable mother earth, sure. The pavement cracks and the trees and deer soon take over. But where do we transfer the drug addicts still sleeping in the ditches?
Notify me of follow-up comments via email.