Javier F. Ponce and his team recently developed a sustainable floating garden system, run off of solar power, and estimated to produce over 8,152 tonnes of vegetables and 1,703 tonnes of fish a year.
Ponce is an architect and founder of Forward Thinking Architecture from Barcelona, Spain, a company dedicated to environmentally beneficial and societally progressive architecture and urban design. Their recent project is named Smart Floating Farms, and incorporates a number of sustainable farming methods, such as hydroponics, solar and aquaculture.
“Based on a Floating Multi-layered strategy which combines Aquaculture (fish), Hydroponics (crops) and Photovoltaics (solar power), we aim that these floating farms can be located close to areas where food is more needed and potentially become automated Farm Clusters run by the use of IT technologies/software.” Says Ponce on Forward Thinking Architecture’s website.
The farm would sit in a large body of water, as close as possible to the communities they’re intended to feed in order to reduce food miles and the carbon emissions produced by transportation. Smart Floating Farms’ design was inspired by the rectangular floating fish farms used in Asia, each farm measuring 200 metres by 350 metres.
The floating farm is divided into three layers: aquaponics and aquaculture on the bottom, hydroponic crops in the middle, and a solar-panel roof on top, complete with skylights and rainwater collection systems. With its innovative design and potential to yield thousands of tonnes of food a year, Ponce and his team hope to contribute to solving the issue of food scarcity in the face of over population. Local and sustainably produced food will play a major factor in this, according to Ponce.
“The world population is predicted to grow from 6.9 billion in 2010 to 8.3 billion in 2030 and to 9.1 billion in 2050. By 2030, food demand is predicted to increase by 50% (70% by 2050). The main challenge facing the agricultural sector is not so much growing 70% more food in 40 years, but making 70% more food available on the plate.”
Sources: cargocollective.com Photos by: Forward Thinking Architecture