The San Diego City Council voted unanimously this week to implement AB 551, a state law passed in 2013 that lets urban areas create “urban agriculture incentive zones” within which private landowners can secure a property tax reduction by committing their land to urban agriculture for at least five years.
This is a very welcome development. The benefits of urban agriculture are well established and include access to community gardens, revitalization of vacant lots, increased availability of fresh fruit and vegetables and healthy outdoor physical activity.
When most people think “agriculture” they probably picture rows of crops, barns, farm animals and raised beds in a school or community garden.
Agriculture by one definition is “the cultivation of animals, plants, fungi and other life forms for food, fiber, biofuel, medicinal and other products used to sustain and enhance human life.”