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Journal of Environmental Accounting and Management
António Mendes Lopes (editor), Jiazhong Zhang(editor)
António Mendes Lopes (editor)

University of Porto, Portugal


Jiazhong Zhang (editor)

School of Energy and Power Engineering, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi Province 710049, China

Fax: +86 29 82668723 Email:

Evaluating the Energy Sustainability of Urban Agriculture Towards More Resilient Urban Systems

Journal of Environmental Accounting and Management 4(2) (2016) 175--193 | DOI:10.5890/JEAM.2016.06.006

Patrizia Ghisellini$^{1}$; Marco Casazza$^{2}$

$^{1}$ Department of Agri-Food Science and Technology, Alma Mater Studiorum - University of Bologna, Viale G. Fanin, 50, 40127, Bologna, Italy

$^{2}$ Department of Sciences and Technologies, Parthenope University of Napoli, Centro Direzionale – Isola C4, 80143, Napoli, Italy

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Food is the primary energetic need for humankind. It provides energy and nutrients, but its acquisition requires energy expenditure. This fact is particularly important, when considering the urban environment, since human communities organized within cities almost exclusively rely on the import of resources to meet their daily basic needs. Field-to-fork chain and its energetic cost depends on the organization of the food production and transformation processes, which, in turn, can be influenced by the city-countryside relationship idea and the organization of both the urbanization process and the agricultural production. A solution might come from the urban agriculture development and management. A short review of the state-of-theart about urban agriculture, energy and urban resilience is given, together with an historical overview of the city-countryside relationship idea development, which still influences the evolution of urban agriculture. The results show that urban agriculture in the different forms partially contribute to address food security in urban centres both in developed and developing countries. It also provides many environmental, economic and social benefits. However, in particular the energetic and environmental impacts of the different forms should be widely investigated on-site to understand whether UA is a sustainable option.


The authors would like to thank the two anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments. Marco Casazza warmly acknowledges the financial support by the Stiftelsen "C.M. Lerici" scholarship as well as the support received by the EU Project EUFORIE – European Futures for Energy Efficiency, funded under EU Horizon 2020 programme, call identifier H2020-EE-2014-2-RIA and topic EE-12-2014, Socio-economic research on energy efficiency.


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