A giant floating farm to produce almost 10 tonnes of food each year – Fruits, vegetables and fish!
Spanish architects have designed this giant floating farm which has three floors and could possibly help the Earth’s growing population by producing nearly 10 tonnes of extra food. The best part of it is that the farm is not going to occupy any land or fresh water.
The entire project is self-sustaining with solar-power panels and would include massive hydroponic farms. Also it would be watered by desalinated seawater. Beside all of that there would be a fish farm below.
As you might imagine, the whole farm is still in a very conceptual stage and so far yet there has no prototype made. The blueprint is based on existing technology which shouldn’t give no reasons why it couldn’t be built. Though right now it’s difficult to know how successful exactly this could be.
The architect team behind the concept at Forward Thinking Architecture wrote on their site:”This is not science fiction. It is a serious and viable solution”, and I guess we would all agree that it’s true. As the Earth is getting more and more overloaded and there’s less productive land (also due to global warming) we need to find alternative ways how to produce food and to be sustainable is really important. We already have the technologies long time ago. It’s about time to put it in use on a bigger scale and put it in use. “It is not meant to ‘solve’ all humanity’s hunger problems or to replace existing traditional agriculture; this is not the idea at all. The driver behind the project is to open a new initiative which can be complementary and compatible with other existing production methods in order to help reduce food risk associated problems in different areas of the globe.”
Me personally I think this kind of floating farms should be obligatory to every government to secure that there would NOT be any percent of population in hunger as there are now. For instance these magnificent farms that could produce nearly 10 tonnes of additional food, could also be part of the governments budget to secure that people in danger of exclusion from the society would also have a minimum amount of food on their plate on the daily basis. Though I’m more than sure that most of the governments wouldn’t give a darm of these people because for the governments they are just an expense. It’s a sad truth but this is how it is.
It’s not the first time floating farms have been proposed. Back in 2014 another group of Spanish architects proposed even a taller version of a floating farm. Also in Japan and India engineers are building floating solar farms to harness electricity. Though there’s big difference between the other designs and this one. This design owns its own mini-ecosystem that would be capable of producing all of the following items:
By design, the top level of the farm would be covered with solar panels and skylights to allow sunlight to be harvested for electricity, and also to filter through to the plants below. Natural light is always the best one to make the plants grow.
On the second level there would be the hydroponic vegetables and crops. All wast products from these crops would be recycled and used to feed the fish in the level below. Also the waste from these fish would be used. The fish waste would be used to fertilise the crops. All this combination together would be creating a self-sustaining system.
Forward Thinking Architecture predicts that the farm would be able to produce 1.7 tonnes of fish, and 8.1 tonnes of fruit and vegetables annually. This should be enough to start off with.
In total, the farm would be a massive structure covering 200 m by 350 m area which would be 204,000 square meters. It’s so much easier to use this space on an ocean as there’s plenty of space available. On land it would be quite difficult and impractical.
To take the most advantage of its location on the ocean, the farm would contain wind turbines and wave energy converters to make the most of the natural energy available. It would also have a desalination plant and an on-bard slaughterhouse and processing and packaging area. So, the products could be sent directly to shops or consumers. This would reduce the food miles and carbon footprint of each product. The best part of it is that the farm is mostly automatic. It uses sensor systems to regulate watering processes and position itself in the most efficient spot each day.
There are some obstacles to overcome with structures of this kind. For instance right now engineers are struggling to keep wave energy generators safe from storm surges. This means that it would be hard to find a safe spot to place these stunning beauties. At the same time we have plenty of harbours, lakes and rivers around the world which could be used instead to start off with while finding a solution for the wave energy generators issue.
Right now the project is in a very early stage, but if we could find a way how to grow food sustainably in currently unused areas, it would be a huge step forward feeding the soon-to-be 7.5 billion mouths on Earth.
Have a look at the website of Forward Thinking Architecture. You can find several different projects and designs that I find really interesting and useful.
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