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Machine Ecologies Klym, Sarah 2020-05

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Machine EcologiesSarah KlymM.Arch Graduation Project2020Prof. Thena Tak [Committee Chair]Dr. Adam Rysanek [Internal Mentor]Chad Manley [External Mentor]i i i i iFRONT MATTER MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMBuilt to draw resources from gridded “peripheries”, machines of industry have reshaped the rural north. In tailoring the landscape to the machine, these territories have come to be misunderstood as physically and temporally disjointed sites of extraction. In reality, these places are critical future thresholds for ecosystems in flux, now more than ever in need of succession and connectivity. This project proposes an ecology of machines that celebrates complexity in the way we divide and cultivate agricultural landscapes in northern British Columbia.This thesis explores the relationship between productive landscapes and the machines that shape them.ABSTRACTiv vFRONT MATTER MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMCONTENTSFRONT MAT TERAbstract iiTable of Contents ivList of Figures viAcknowledgments viiiCONTEXT XIISUCCESSION 36SITE 64MACHINE ECOLOGIES 80FIELD NOTES 104vi viiFRONT MATTER MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.45] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 3 of 6. Author, 2020.[Fig.46] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 4 of 6. Author, 2020.[Fig.47] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 5 of 6. Author, 2020.[Fig.48] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 6 of 6. Author, 2020.[Fig.49] Axonometric, Past / Present / Future Landscape. Author, 2020. [Fig.50] Aerial perspective of the site. Google Earth, 2016.[Fig.51] Site Collage, River. Author, 2020. [Fig.52] Site Collage, Agriculture. Author, 2020. [Fig.53] Site as Refugia, Deglaciation of North America, 18 000 BP - 7 000 BP. Author, 2020. [Fig.54] Site Aerial Photo, 1956.  Used with permission from  UBC Air Photo Archives, 1956.[Fig.55] Site Aerial Photo, 2016.  Google Earth, 2016. [Fig.56] Intensive Agriculture, 1956. Author, 2020. [Fig.57] Intensive Agriculture,  2016. Author, 2020. [Fig.58] Plan, Future Landscape. Author, 2020. [Fig.59] Aerial perspective of the site. Google Earth, 2016.[Fig.60] Drone’s Eye View, Landscape. Author, 2020. [Fig.61] Mouse’s Eye View, Soil Sensor. Author, 2020. [Fig.62] Worm’s Eye View, Seeding Machines. Author, 2020. [Fig.63] Caretaker’s Eye View, Monitoring Plans. Author, 2020. [Fig.64] Bee’s Eye View, Blooming Fields. Author, 2020. [Fig.65] Weeding Machine Assembly + Operation. Author, 2020. [Fig.66] Short-Eared Owl’s View, Collection Machine. Author, 2020. [Fig.67] Butterfly’s Eye View, Swathing. Author, 2020. [Fig.68] Jackrabbit’s Eye View, Collecting Berries. Author, 2020. [Fig.69] Jackrabbit’s Eye View, Trapping. Author, 2020. [Fig.70] Landscape in Succession. Author, 2020. [Fig.71] Lichen at Charlie Lake. Author, 2020. [Fig.72] Riparian. Author, 2020. [Fig.73] Old Growth Forests. Author, 2020. [Fig.74] Deciduous Edges. Author, 2020[Fig.75] Mixed Prairie Grasslands. Author, 2020. [Fig.76] Intensive Agriculture. Author, 2020.[Fig.77] Landscape Zones by Temporality. Author, 2020. [Fig.78] Alfalfa. Author, 2020.[Fig.79] Alfalfa Life Cycle. Author, 2020.[Fig.80] Alfalfa, 3 months. Author, 2020. [Fig.81] Alfalfa, harvested above crown. Author, 2020.[Fig.82] Alfalfa, 24 months. Author, 2020.[Fig.83] Alfalfa, Optimum Spacing, Year 1. Author, 2020. [Fig.84] Alfalfa, Optimum Spacing, Year 3. Author, 2020. [Fig.85] Canola. Author, 2020. [Fig.86] Canola Lifecycle. Author, 2020. [Fig.87] Canola, 1 month. Author, 2020. [Fig.88] Canola, 4 months. Author, 2020. [Fig.89] Canola, Optimum Spacing. Author, 2020. 545658606264676970727476777880828486889092949698100102104106107108109110111112113114115116117118119120121122123[Fig.1] Aerial perspective of the Peace River Delta. Google Earth, 2016.[Fig.2] Traffic Jam in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Josey Shawa, 2019. [Fig.3] Global Population Density, 2050 [West]. Author, 2019.[Fig.4] Global Population Density, 2050 [East]. Author, 2019.[Fig.5] Wind erosion carries top soil from farmland during the Dust Bowl.   US Department of Agriculture, 1930. [Fig.6] Projected Change in Air Temperature, 2050 [West]. Author, 2019.[Fig.7] Projected Change in Air Temperature, 2050 [East]. Author, 2019.[Fig.8] Projected Change in Global Agricultural Land Suitability, 2050 [West]. Author, 2019.[Fig.9] Projected Change in Global Agricultural Land Suitability, 2050 [East]. Author, 2019.[Fig.10] Canadian Wheat Exports, 2020. Author, 2019.[Fig.11] Brebner Homestead, 1905. Provincial Archives of Alberta.[Fig.12] Average Farm Size + Productivity, 1921. Author, 2019.[Fig.13] Average Farm Size + Productivity, 2016. Author, 2019.[Fig.14] People Per Farm, 1921. Author, 2019.[Fig.15] People Per Farm, 2016. Author, 2019.[Fig.16] Urbanized Population Percentage, 2020. Author, 2019.[Fig.17] Urbanized Population Percentage, 2050. Author, 2019.[Fig.18] Esso Strathcona Refinery, 2012. Jason Woodhead.[Fig.19] Reaping. Author, 2019.[Fig.20] Reaping by Combine. Author, 2019.[Fig.21] Threshing. Author, 2019.[Fig.22] Threshing by Combine. Author, 2019.[Fig.23] Winnowing. Author, 2019.[Fig.24] Winnowing by Combine. Author, 2019.[Fig.25] Automated Landscapes: 1:500. Author, 2019.[Fig.26] WAC Bennett Dam, BC. Robert Ciavarro, 1987. [Fig.27] Oil Derrick. Wikimedia Commons, 2010.[Fig.28] Automated Landscapes: 1:1000. Author, 2019.[Fig.29] Automated Landscapes: 1:5000. Author, 2019.[Fig.30] Aerial perspective, transition landscapes. Google Earth, 2016.[Fig.31] British Columbia Average Temperature, 2000. Author, 2020.[Fig.32] British Columbia Average Temperature, 2080 (projected). Author, 2020.[Fig.33] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 1950. Author, 2019.[Fig.34] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 1960. Author, 2019.[Fig.35] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 1970. Author, 2019.[Fig.36] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 1980. Author, 2019.[Fig.37] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2000. Author, 2019.[Fig.38] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2010. Author, 2019.[Fig.39] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2020. Author, 2019.[Fig.40] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2030. Author, 2019.[Fig.41] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2040. Author, 2019.[Fig.42] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2050. Author, 2019. [Fig.43] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 1 of 6. Author, 2020.[Fig.44] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 2 of 6. Author, 2020.xii24578910111314161718192021232425262728293032333435363839404142434445464748495052LIST OF FIGURESviii ixFRONT MATTER MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMTHANKS TO: Thena, for an incredible education in looking at the world,Chad and Adam for the thoughtful advice and motivation,Jake, for saint-like patience and winter driving skills,My family, And my second SALA family;it’s been a privilege to know and learn from you.ACKNOWLEDGMENTSxix MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMFor W.A.T.1 1CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.1] Aerial perspective of the Peace River Delta, 2016. Google Earth .ContextPART ONExii2 3CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM“We would never invent a machine to decelerate, to slow down. The world is thus destined to be exhausted as a spatial and temporal expanse because the world is finite and because speed has become the absolute speed of light.”     [Paul Virilio]  1GROWTH[Fig.2] Traffic Jam in Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2019. “Dromologist” 2 Virilio argues society is defined by acceleration.Acceleration of production, of consumption, of action, and of destruction, in both space and time 3. The twenty-first century has seen unprecedented evidence of this desire to reach full speed. Populations have multiplied three times over since 1950, aided by the rich surpluses of an industrializing world 4. Technologies, in their evolution as extensions of humanity, have woven an intricate global lattice of communication networks and supply chains. They simultaneously produce and reveal a vast and faceted reality.Machines multiply in the growing void between production and revelation. The instruments of a search for speed begin to outpace their human counterparts, no longer cybernetic appliances but autonomous constellations 5. 1 Paul Virilio and J. Armitage, Virilio Live: Selected Interviews  (SAGE Publications, 2001), 83-84.2 Virilio defines dromology as the “science (or logic) of speed”, from the Greek dromos  (race or racetrack). 3 Paul Virilio, Speed and Politics ,  Foreign Agents (MIT University Press Group Limited, 2006).4 John Bongaarts, “Human Population Growth and the Demographic Transition,” Biological Sciences 364, no. 1532 (October 27, 2009): 2985–90.5 Arianne Harrison,  Architectural Theories of the Environment: Posthuman Territory  (Routledge, 2013), 8-9.6 Bongaarts, “Human Population Growth”, 2987.Populations are expected to explode beyond 9 billion by 2050. [Fig.3,4] 6We know the world is finite; we stoke the fires of acceleration in both fear and awe of an absolute speed.  4 5CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.3] Global Population Density, 2050 9.8 Billion [West][Fig.4] Global Population Density, 2050 9.8 Billion [East]6 7CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.5] Wind erosion carries top soil from farmland during the Dust Bowl, 1930s.  US Department of Agriculture. CLIMATE“‘Let us not mix up heaven and earth, the global stage and the local scene, the human and the nonhuman’ [...] They have cut the Gordian knot with a well-honed sword. The shaft is broken: on the left, they have put knowledge of things; on the right, power and human politics.”  11[Bruno Latour, We Have Never Been Modern]Acceleration invites friction. Byproducts of the search for speed have shifted environmental patterns into unfamiliar territory. Trapped heat, sea level rise, volatility, and natural disaster tip the scale of delicate systems 7. The breadbaskets of the world brace for scorching growing seasons and drought [Fig.8,9].Fearful of an uncertain future, the burden of blame, and roadblocks to acceleration, fact and fiction are manipulated to suit popular political will 8. Scientific communities continue to construct parallel worlds in a search of possible truths 9. This thesis aligns itself with a “middle-of-the-road” narrative, a pathway in which society’s economies and technologies follow historical patterns of speed and development 10. 7 IPCC, Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis. Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change  (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013). 8 Kari Marie Norgaard, “Climate Denial and the Construction of Innocence: Reproducing Transnational Environmental Privilege in the Face of Climate Change,” Race, Gender & Class 19, no. 1/2 (2012): 80–103.9 Brian C. O’Neill et al., “The Roads Ahead: Narratives for Shared Socioeconomic Pathways Describing World Futures in the 21st Century,”  Global Environmental Change  42 (January 1, 2017): 169–80.10 Ibid, 173. The  “Middle of the Road” or “SSP2” scenario follows “a development pathway that is consistent with typical patterns of historical experience observed over the past century.”11 Bruno Latour,  We Have Never Been Modern (Harvard University Press, 2012), 3.Rather than assuming a teleological line into a brighter, smoother future, this project exists within the murky cyclical nature of human patterns and the inertia that slows change. This blurred future is a world of uneven development, where environmental shifts disproportionately affect an increasingly stratified global society.  The world will be three degrees warmer by 2050. [Fig.6,7]We don’t try to slow down, not truly; we tell ourselves it’s too late, anyhow.8 9CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.6] Projected Change in Air Temperature [degrees Celsius], 2050 [West][Fig.7] Projected Change in Air Temperature [degrees Celsius], 2050 [East]10 11CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.8] Projected Change in Global Agricultural Land Suitability, 2050 [West]Improved SuitabilityWorsened SuitabilityImproved SuitabilityWorsened Suitability[Fig.9] Projected Change in Global Agricultural Land Suitability, 2050 [East]12 13CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM“In this staging of the ‘good’ Anthropocene, the new symmetrical relational ontology functions as a philosophical quilt that sustains and advocates accelerationist manifestos for hyper-modernization. To save the world and ourselves, it seems, we do not need less capitalism, but rather a deeper, more intense, and radically reflexive form [...] such that capitalism can survive within a transformed earth.” 12[Erik Swyngedouw, More-than-Human Constellations]GEOGRAPHIES OF PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTIONNew normals of environmental imbalance and exponential population growth pose a mounting threat of global scarcity. Food staple giants struggle to meet demand in new unsuitable growing conditions 13. Pressure mounts on failing sources of food and fuel. Capitalist structures are preserved, choosing instead to alter and modify sites of exploitation.The piercing gaze of speculative investment drifts northwardas frozen landscapes begin to thaw.12 Erik Swyngedouw, “More-than-Human Constellations as Immuno-Biopolitical Fantasy in the Urbicene”, in New Geographies 9: Posthuman, Eds. M. Gomez-Luque and G. Jafari (New Geographies Lab, Harvard University Graduate School of Design, 2017), 22.13 Top wheat producers China, India, the United States and France, will experience a 4-6% drop in yields with each degree Celcius increase in global temperature. Wheat is the most highly consumed crop worldwide.  Bing Liu et al., “Similar Estimates of Temperature Impacts on Global Wheat Yield by Three Independent Methods,” Nature Climate Change  6, no. 12 (December 2016), 1130–36. 14 Chris Arsenault, “In Canada, Climate Change Could Open New Farmland to the Plow,” Reuters  (September 24, 2017) https://www.reuters.com/article/us-heatwave-canada-farming-idUSKCN1BZ075.15 Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, “The State of Agricultural Commodity Markets: Agricultural Trade, Climate Change, and Food Security” (2018), 20.Canada is renewed as an international site of speculation14. Existing supply chains of resource extraction offer tempting potential for increased capacity [Fig.10], with vast territories ready to be exploited to a new degree. Wheat thrives at higher latitudes as ecoregions and growing degree days creep northward. Canada’s agricultural exports increase by more than twenty percent 15. [Fig.10] Canadian Wheat Exports, 2020 $8,084,072,357 CAD14 15CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM“The image of barbed wire is a symbol here in the Great Plains -- and elsewhere. Its significance as built form has emerged out of a cumulative pattern of activity: the brutal, unrelenting activity of constructing this fenced-around cultural landscape.” 16[Harris Stone, Dispersed City of the Plains]“The world in its actual state is the complex, yet still traceable, consequence of a continuous process of land subdivision.”  17[Pezo von Ellrichshausen, Spatial Structure]THE SUM OF ITS PARTSHistory repeats itself; speculative boosterism returns to a new frontier. Enamored with the potential profits of a fertile north, industrial conglomerates collect parcels of land. As corporations extend their reach into rural territories, a strange inverse of subdivision takes hold; land that had been continually fractured into human scale parcels becomes whole and inhuman again in fewer, richer hands. Farms grow exponentially larger and more productive, but owned and operated by fewer people 18 [Fig.12,13,14,15]. Governments fearful of volatile oil markets and ready to liquidate resources at any opportunity are willing participants in the transfer of public to private land titles 19. 16 Harry Stone,  Dispersed City of the Plains (Monthly Review Press, 1998), 5.17 Mauricio Pezo and Sofia von Ellrichshausen, Spatial Structure (Copenhagen, Denmark: Architectural Publisher B, 2016), 32.18 Statistics Canada, “The Daily — 2016 Census of Agriculture,” May 10, 2017, https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/170510/dq170510a-eng.htm.19 Emma Graney, “Kenney Plans Peace River Country Crown Land Sell-off,” Edmonton Journal, November 22, 2018, https://edmontonjournal.com/news/politics/kenney-plans-peace-river-country-crown-land-sell-off-as-ucp-transition-team-ramps-up.20 Damian White and Chris Wilbert, eds., Technonatures: Environments, Technologies, Spaces, and Places in the Twenty-First Century  (Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2009), 3.21 Statistics Canada, “The Daily — 2016 Census of Agriculture.”22 Statistics Canada, “Canada Goes Urban” (April 13, 2015), https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/11-630-x/11-630-x2015004-eng.htm.Space is simultaneously aggregated and bounded by “circuits of commodification, property regulation, innovation, patenting, and enclosure” 20. This time, corporations do not bring the promise of new jobs, new highways, or new towns with them. We are told the West will be made Wild again. Full time farm operators and community members are replaced by cheaper transitory seasonal laborers 21.Few choose to call the working landscapes their home. Urbanization trends pick up speed [Fig.16,17]. Demographic shifts and aging populations lead to the decline of the political agency and autonomy that comes with tax revenues 22. Human infrastructures are swallowed by seas of productive landscapes. Machine infrastructures, on the other hand, begin to multiply. [Fig.11] Brebner Homestead, 1905. Provincial Archives of Alberta.16 17CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM160 acres average farm size (quarter section)0.25 acres harvested per day / per person1: 10 000 000[1921] [Fig.12] Average Farm Size + Productivity, 1921640 acres average farm size (full section)200 acres harvested per day / per person1: 10 000 000[2016] [Fig.13] Average Farm Size + Productivity, 201618 19CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.14] People Per Farm, 1921 5.5[01] [02] [03] [04] [05] [0.5][Fig.15] People Per Farm, 2016 2.5[01] [02]20 21CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.16] Urbanized Population Percentage, 2020 Countries by GDP Per CapitaCAworld average [60%][Fig.17] Urbanized Population Percentage, 2050 Countries by GDP Per CapitaCAworld average [71%]22 23CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.18] Esso Strathcona Refinery, 2012Agriculture industries are quick to adapt precision technologies. Farmers monitor fleets of algorithm-driven sowing, irrigating, and reaping machines with drones23. Research and development pays for itself in increased yields for large corporations, but smaller-scale operations struggle with the exponential up-front costs of keeping pace. 23 Robin Gebbers and Viacheslav Adamchuk, “Precision Agriculture and Food Security,” Science 327, no. 5967 (February 12, 2010): 828–31.24 Benjamin Bratton, “Further Trace Effects of the Post-Anthropocene”, Architectural Design  vol. 89, no. 1 (January 2019): 18.In the search for ever-increasing yields, the adaptability of human labour is lost to machinic efficiency.The combine provides a twenty-first century example of the translation of human action into machine labour [Fig.19-24], embodying with it not only many modes of work but also livelihoods, family dynamics, and communities. As the combine becomes autonomous, what else will dissolve? MACHINE EVOLUTION“The factory of the future will have only two employees, a man and a dog. The man will be there to feed the dog. The dog will be there to keep the man from touching the equipment.”[Warren Bennis]Technologies evolve from extensions of human capacity to autonomous surrogates; machines begin to absorb the functions and dynamics of rural life. These avatars extract what they can from auxiliary landscapes to send anywhere and everywhere else, hardening the boundaries between urban conditions and rural peripheries that are otherwise softened by conditions of extreme sprawl 24.These machines still need caretakers, of course; however, their complexity necessitates care beyond the purview and material palette of the average mechanic. Small communities of specialized labour join the vestiges of rural life that survive in the wake of a new machine era.24 25CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[01] ReapingThe first step in the harvesting process; the act of cutting down crops. Traditionally performed with a long-handled cutting tool such as a scythe or sickle.[Fig.19] Reaping  The first step in the harvesting process; the act of cutting down crops.  Traditionally performed with a long-handled cutting tool, such as a scythe or sickle. [01_04] Auger[01_02] Reel[01_03] Cutter Bar[01_01] Crop Dividers[Fig.20] Reaping by Combine  Crop dividers direct stalks towards the reel, which grabs the crops and pulls them into the cutter bar as the combine moves. An auger feeds the cut crops into the combine harvester. 26 27CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[02] ThreshingThe process of separating grains from the straw and chaff of cut crops. Originally done with flails, which were used on a barn threshing floor to beat the grain loose from the chaff.  [Fig.21] Threshing  The process of separating grains from the straw and chaff of cut crops. Originally done with flails, which were used on a barn threshing floor to beat the grain loose from the chaff.[02_01] Threshing Cylinders[Fig.22] Threshing by Combine  Threshing cylinders crush the stalks to separate the grain from the chaff.28 29CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.23] Winnowing  Removes debris and the husks or seed casings from grains. This was done by throwing or sifting grains with a winnowing basket; the lighter chaff floats away while the heavier grains [03] WinnowingRemoves debris and the husks or seed casings from grains. In its simplest form, this was done by throwing or sifting grains with a winnowing basket/fan; the lighter chaff floats away while the grains remain.[03_04] Grain Tank[03_05] Straw Chopper /  Spreader[03_02] Straw Walkers[03_03] Sieves[03_01] Fan[Fig.24] Winnowing by Combine  A fan blows lighter chaff upwards through the straw walkers and then to the straw chopper / spreader. Heavier grains fall down through the sieves and are directed to the grain tank.30 31CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM“Algorithms and electrons interweave at landscape scale, driving continental economies.” 25[Benjamin H. Bratton, The Stack]MACHINE LANDSCAPESFully autonomous territories maintain and reproduce themselves with little intervention beyond their own self-conscious algorithms26. Although few landscapes remain untouched by humans and their terraforming instruments (intentional and otherwise), hybrids of nature and technology reach new extremes [Fig.25, 28, 29]. These extremes can be explored through several contemporary lenses. Technonatures argues all of society is entering new sociopolitical realms of “technonatural life”, and that machine landscapes are simply a necessary extreme manifestation of broader contexts 27. AMID.cero9’s poetic understanding of Third Natures suggests that they are spaces where complex assemblies and ecologies mediate “human and non-human, object and environment.” 2826 Benjamin H. Bratton, The Stack: On Software and Sovereignty ,  Software Studies (MIT Press, 2015), 75.26 Geoff Manaugh, Landscape Futures: Instruments, Devices and Architectural Inventions (Actar, 2013), 12.27 Damian White and Chris Wilbert, eds.,  Technonatures: Environments, Technologies, Spaces, and Places in the Twenty-First Century  (Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2009).28 Cristina Diaz Moreno and Efren Garcia Grinda, Third Natures: A Micropedia (Architectural Association, 2014), 124.29 David Gissen, Subnature: Architecture’s Other Environments (Princeton Architectural Press, 2012), 023.30 Timothy Morton,  Hyperobjects: Philosophy and Ecology after the End of the World ,  Posthumanities (University of Minnesota Press, 2013), 1. Machine landscapes also fall under Gissen’s definition of Subnatures. A liminal territory of “subnatural forces”  and “untidy elements”, autonomous landscapes function as a messy hybrid of products and byproducts that draw boundaries around the limits of contemporary life 29. In this reading, architecture can and should blur these lines. Morton might also classify these territories as Hyperobjects:“They are viscous, which means that they ‘stick’ to beings that are involved with them. They are nonlocal; in other words, any ‘local manifestation’ of a hyperobject is not directly the hyperobject. They involve profoundly different temporalities than the human-scale ones we are used to.” 30[Fig.25] Automated Landscapes: 1:50032 33CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMSITES OF EXTRACTIONSpeculation turns to exploitation as machine landscapes extend their reach northward. Oil prices fail to rebound in markets shocked by global crisis. Relics of the oil and gas industry litter northern landscapes, left to seep and rust. Capital seeks new avenues of exploitation. Receding boreal forests, disease, clear-cutting, and fire suppression interrupt healthy regenerative growth patterns. Monolithic hydroelectric infrastructures fracture delicate ecological networks.  Pipelines carve physical and social wounds across cultural landscapes. Global food shortages and shifting climates pressure newly viable northern latitudes into the production of high-yield monocrops. Soil quality and biodiversity are devastated by industrial agriculture. Labour shortages accelerate investment in machine production. [Fig.26] WAC Bennett Dam, BC, 1987. Robert Ciavarro. [Fig.27] Oil Derrick, 2010. Wikimedia Commons.34 35CONTEXT MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.28] Automated Landscapes: 1:1000 [Fig.29] Automated Landscapes: 1:5000Like invasive species, a-contextual machines of mass industry remake the landscape in their image. The rural north becomes a gridded commodity, produced and consumed by machines. [Fig.30] Aerial perspective, transition landscapes, 2016. Google Earth .PART TWO36Succession37MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.31] British Columbia Average Temperature, 2000 [Fig.32] British Columbia Average Temperature, 2080 (projected)As temperatures rise...38 39SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.33] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 1950.Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas TenuresPopulation EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas Tenures[Fig.34] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 1960.And the space between humans and productive landscapes grows farther apart...40 41SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.35] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 1970.Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas Tenures[Fig.36] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 1980.Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas TenuresAnd the space between humans and productive landscapes grows farther apart...42 43SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.37] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2000.Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas Tenures[Fig.38] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2010.Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas TenuresAnd the space between humans and productive landscapes grows farther apart...44 45SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.39] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2020.Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas TenuresEcoregion Boundaries Ecoregion Boundaries[Fig.40] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2030 [speculative].Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas TenuresAnd the space between humans and productive landscapes grows farther apart...46 47SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.41] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2040 [speculative].Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas Tenures[Fig.42] Population and Industry in the Peace River Region, 2050 [speculative].Population EcumeneAgriculture EcumeneOil + Gas TenuresEcoregion Boundaries Ecoregion BoundariesAnd the space between humans and productive landscapes grows farther apart...48 49SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMA critical turning point approaches.[Fig.43] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 1 of 650 51SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMA critical turning point approaches.As global crises displace endangered ecosystems, northern thresholds become pivotal zones of transition. [Fig.44] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 2 of 652 53SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMA critical turning point approaches.As global crises displace endangered ecosystems, northern thresholds become pivotal zones of transition. Liminal landscapes rippled by waves of succession are crucial for the future of interconnected plant, animal, and human communities.[Fig.45] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 3 of 654 55SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMA critical turning point approaches.As global crises displace endangered ecosystems, northern thresholds become pivotal zones of transition. Liminal landscapes rippled by waves of succession are crucial for the future of interconnected plant, animal, and human communities.Layers of old growth and regeneration provide a network of resiliency for flora and fauna. [Fig.46] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 4 of 656 57SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMA critical turning point approaches.As global crises displace endangered ecosystems, northern thresholds become pivotal zones of transition. Liminal landscapes rippled by waves of succession are crucial for the future of interconnected plant, animal, and human communities.Layers of old growth and regeneration provide a network of resiliency for flora and fauna. Machines of the grid break down these complex landscapes into an easily digestible and reproducible monoculture.[Fig.47] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 5 of 658 59SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMA critical turning point approaches.As global crises displace endangered ecosystems, northern thresholds become pivotal zones of transition. Liminal landscapes rippled by waves of succession are crucial for the future of interconnected plant, animal, and human communities.Layers of old growth and regeneration provide a network of resiliency for flora and fauna. Machines of the grid break down these complex landscapes into an easily digestible and reproducible monoculture.This thesis challenges singularity in composition and cultivation, proposing a new ecology of machines to regenerate critical refugia in times of deep uncertainty.[Fig.48] Section, 10 000 BP - 20??, 6 of 660 61SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMThis project explores the hybrid landscape of a speculative future, where humans and machines learn to coexist in the blurry, the interconnected, and the complex. [Fig.49] Axonometric, Past / Present / Future Landscape62 63SUCCESSION MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM64 65SITE MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMPART THREE[Fig.50] Aerial perspective of the site, 2016. Google Earth .Site66 67SITE MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMThe stage of this future is set north of Charlie Lake , near Fort St. John, B.C.Bordered to the south by the Peace River, the site gains value for its fertile agricultural soil as the Site C Dam floods acres of the river valley’s farmland. The site also sees renewed importance as an ecological corridor, as longstanding networks between the river and the boreal threshold to the north are submerged.[Fig.51] Site Collage, River68 69SITE MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMThe surrounding agricultural monocrop proves difficult for species to cross. The homogeneous territory acts as a strange counterpoint to its many millennia as a rich cultural landscape. [Fig.52] Site Collage, Agriculture 70 71SITE MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.53] Site as Refugia, in context of Deglaciation of North America, 18 000 BP - 7 000 BP72 73SITE MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.54] Site Aerial Photo, 1956      Used with permission from       UBC Air Photo Archives74 75SITE MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.55] Site Aerial Photo, 2016.  Google Earth.76 77SITE MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.56] Intensive Agriculture, 1956 [Fig.57] Intensive Agriculture, 201678 79SITE MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.58] Plan, Future LandscapeA strange near-future mixes this agricultural potential with a rich transect; riparian zones, old growth forest, deciduous edges, mixed grasslands, and intensive agriculture shape a mosaic landscape. PART FOUR80 [Fig.59] Aerial perspective of the site, 2016. Google Earth .Machine Ecologies81MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM82 83MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMA cluster of drones floats high over this landscape.  They twist, tug, and drift in the wind like a child’s kite. A conductive tether registers their clumsy dance at a small power station 500 metres below, swallowed long ago by the forest. The drones know every inch of the land beneath them. Soil sensors quilt the ground in an invisible grid, inundating the drones with an endless stream of data. They stitch together a fine mesh of points and pixels, an almanac for farmers and cinema for city dwellers.  The drones dream of a day off.[Fig.60] Drone’s Eye View, Landscape84 85MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.61] Mouse’s Eye View, Soil SensorA small sensor gazes up at the drones overhead from the edge of a grassland zone. It turns its face to the low sun, yawning as it stretches deeper into the thawing ground. The sensor hums in tune with a thousand others at a frequency only the ants feel.86 87MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.62] Worm’s Eye View, Seeding Machines Distant vibrations from the adjacent zone scatter the ants. A fleet of gyroscopic spinning tops carve delicate trenches across a nearby  open field, carefully zipping the ground open and closed to plant a new season’s seeds. The disaggregated discs, distant relatives of the seed drill, take turns weaving new patterns of fertilizer and seeds between the winter’s cover crop stubble. New threads of canola and wheat are stitched across perennial alfalfa returning for a final year. A caretaker and his daughter delight in the dance. 88 89MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMThe caretaker checks his plans,  taking a minute to orient himself;  the familiar patterns are made strange by the machine algorithm. [Fig.63] Caretaker’s Eye View, Monitoring PlansThey curve to the contours of the earth, following keylines in the landscape to minimize irrigation. They warp and bend in tune with data from the network of drones and sensors, making the most of light, symbiotic adjacencies, wind pollination, and weed competition. Alfalfa’s nitrogen-fixing perennial roots, canola’s high value-oil seed, and wheat’s deep growth shape a complimentary intercropped landscape.     90 91MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.64] Bee’s Eye View, Blooming FieldsThe landscape blooms into a strange hybrid of algorithmic efficiency and imagination as spring turns to summer.  The temporality of annual crops is a creative opportunity for caretakers rather than a destructive process; the field becomes the garden as it flowers in a slow act of geocinema.The bees keep busy as crops bloom, carrying rich pollen between the fields and the forests.92 93MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.65] Weeding Machine Assembly + OperationHaving outlived their usefulness for the sowing season, the spinning top seeding machines are re-purposed as the pendulum-like blade of a harvesting and weeding machine.  The caretaker fixes a disc between a pair of rotating metal armatures, then sets it free to roam the landscape in search of weeds.  It touches the earth lightly, cutting above the ground; the machine passes by frequently enough to make it difficult for weeds to put down roots.94 95MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMA collection machine wanders in its wake. Its rotating armatures pull detritus from the landscape to its body, holding close an assemblage of waste as it wanders.  The weeds, hay, twigs, and branches begin to break down; moss and lichen start to grow, bees build hives, and swallows nest as the machine accumulates. It meanders until it folds under its own weight, where it continues to decompose into closely monitored compositions of compost and microbiota.[Fig.66] Short-Eared Owl’s View, Collection Machine96 97MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.67] Butterfly’s Eye View, SwathingThe weeding machine shifts its focus as the crops are ready to harvest, reaping ornate patterns into the fields. It takes pride in swathing as it arranges the cut crops into careful windrows to dry. A cluster of exhausted machines soak up solar energy as they sunbathe in the harvested plains.Apart from a longstanding battle with stands of aspen, the weeding machines rarely wander past the deciduous edges of the forest. They sense the old growth zones of black and white spruce operate within a slower temporal dimension, a deep ecology resonant with the lighter touch of longstanding human traditions.  98 99MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.68] Jackrabbit’s Eye View, Collecting BerriesAs fall turns to winter, the forests come into their own as connective tissue, habitat, and food sources for migrating ecosystems.100 101MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.69] Jackrabbit’s Eye View, TrappingAs uncertain tides push and pull environmental thresholds, resiliency lies in connectivity and deep ecology. No matter the future, rethinking the way we divide and cultivate productive landscapes is a critical first step to keep refugia above the waves. 102 103MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.70] Landscape in SuccessionAPPENDIX104 [Fig.71] Lichen at Charlie LakeField Notes105MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYM[Fig.72] Riparian [Fig.73] Old Growth Forests106 107MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.74] Deciduous Edges [Fig.75] Mixed Prairie Grasslands108 109MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.76] Intensive Agriculture[Fig.77] opposite:   Landscape Zones by Temporality110 111MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.78] Alfalfa Medicago sativa[Fig.79] Alfalfa Life Cycle112 113MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.80] Alfalfa, 3 months [Fig.81] Alfalfa, harvested above crown114 115MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.82] Alfalfa, 24 months [Fig.83] Alfalfa, Optimum Spacing, Year 1116 117MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.84] Alfalfa, Optimum Spacing, Year 3 [Fig.85] Canola Brassica napus118 119MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.86] Canola Lifecycle [Fig.87] Canola, 1 month120 121MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.88] Canola, 4 months [Fig.89] Canola, Optimum Spacing122 123MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.90] Common Wheat Triticum aestivum[Fig.91] Wheat Life Cycle124 125MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.92] Wheat, 1 month [Fig.93] Wheat, 3 months126 127MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.94] Wheat, 4 months [Fig.95] Wheat, Optimum Spacing128 129MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.96] White Spruce Picea glauca130 131MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.97] Black Spruce Picea mariana132 133MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.98] Trembling Aspen Populus tremuloides[Fig.99] Trembling Aspen, Fall134 135MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.100] Trembling Aspen, new growth from root [Fig.101] Trembling Aspen, root survives fire136 137MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX[Fig.102] Trembling Aspen, new growth from root after fire138 139MACHINE ECOLOGIES SARAH KLYMAPPENDIX

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