Monday, 16 October 2017

The water under Colorado’s Eastern Plains is running dry as farmers keep irrigating “great American desert”

WRAY — Colorado farmers who defied nature’s limits and nourished a pastoral paradise by irrigating drought-prone prairie are pushing ahead in the face of worsening environmental fallout: Overpumping of groundwater has drained the High Plains Aquifer to the point that streams are drying up at the rate of 6 miles a year.

The drawdown has become so severe that highly resilient fish are disappearing, evidence of ecological collapse. A Denver Post analysis of federal data shows the aquifer shrank twice as fast over the past six years compared with the previous 60.

Aquaponics uses less than 10% of the water used in traditional agriculture.

Read more (original source Denver Post)

Friday, 6 October 2017

University of British Columbia - Aquaponic Workshop Oct 12

UBC Centre for Sustainable Food systems is putting on an aquaponics workshop on Oct 12 from 6 pm - 7:30 pm. Register here

The Centre for Sustainable Food Systems (CSFS), located at the UBC Farm, is a unique research centre that aims to understand and fundamentally transform local and global food systems towards a more sustainable, food secure future. The CSFS is a living laboratory, committed to finding solutions to both the local and global challenges facing food systems sustainability and translating solutions to improve personal, community, and environmental health. Through our Vision, Mission, and Guiding Principles, the CSFS models new paradigms for sustainable communities.

The UBC Farm is a 24-ha teaching and learning space, and integrated production farm located on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Musqueam people. Situated within a 90-year-old coastal hemlock forest, the UBC Farm comprises a mosaic of cultivated annual crop fields, perennial hedgerows and orchards, pasture, teaching gardens, and forest stands. The UBC Farm is certified organic through NOOA, and grows over 200 varieties of fruits, vegetables, and herbs, and lso features honey beehives and egg-laying, open-pasture hens.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Aquaponics in Aldersyde Alberta

Calgary-based Argo Resilience Kit Ltd. (ARK) and High River’s Alberta Tilapia Aquaponics are using Sprung Instant Structure’s newly developed tension fabric greenhouse, located at its Aldersyde facility, to develop a complete aquaponics facility that can be placed anywhere in the world. The aquaponics system is packaged with the specialized greenhouse that uses a highly specialized Japanese membrane with 64 percent transmission and high diffusion of light. The complete package is expected to cost between $300,000 and $400,000.

Original Source

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Montrealers Aquaponic Solution to Food Insecurity

Two young Montrealers hope to help change the harsh reality that fresh food is scarce or unaffordable for many people in places like Nunavik, the northern third of Quebec.

Original Source

Saturday, 2 September 2017

720 Acre Aquaponics Farm in Wisconsin

Superior Fresh's flagship facility is one of the largest in the world. It's 40,000 square foot fish house produces 160,000 pounds of fish and it's 123,000 square foot greenhouse produces 1.8 million pounds of leafy greens. It's good to see commercial aquaponics at this scale.


Monday, 28 August 2017

Dead Zone in Gulf Of Mexico is now the Largest ever measured

The numbers are in. The 2017 Gulf of Mexico Hypoxic Zone, or Dead Zone, measures 8,776 square miles—about the size of New Jersey. This is the largest ever dead zone in the Gulf since mapping of the zone began in 1985!


It begins innocently enough. Farmers use fertilizers to increase the output of their crops so that we can have more food on our tables and more food to sell to the rest of the world.

But it is this agricultural run-off combined with urban run-off that brings excessive amounts of nutrients into waterways that feed the Mississippi River and starts a chain of events in the Gulf that turns deadly.

These nutrients fuel large algal blooms that then sink, decompose, and deplete the water of oxygen. This is Hypoxia -- when oxygen in the water is so low it can no longer sustain marine life in bottom or near bottom waters – literally, a dead zone.

When the water reaches this hypoxic state, fish and shrimp leave the area and anything that can’t escape like crabs, worms, and clams die. So, the very fertilizers that are helping our crops are disrupting the food chain and devastating our food sources in the ocean when applied in excess.

If the amount of fertilizer, sewage, and urban runoff dumping into the Gulf isn’t reduced, the dead zone will continue to wreak havoc on the ecosystem and threaten some of the most productive fisheries in the world.

Aquaponics grows fish and plants together with minimal agricultural discharge.

Saturday, 19 August 2017

Nova Scotia's first commercial aquaponics farm coming in February

Nova Scotia’s first commercial aquaponics farm is poised to start production by next February at the former Newport Station elementary school building in West Hants. Before proceeding, the property needs to be rezoned, which should be concluded by mid-November. As the business is developed, the plan is to construct other buildings on the site, and predict an investment of about $3 million over five years.

In addition to the commercial aquaponics operation, the company also plans to start an aquaponics educational class next year which the public will be invited to attend to familiarize themselves with aquaponics.

Original Source

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

New Tax Rules in Canada Impact Farmers

The National Post reports that the federal government's proposed tax reforms could affect Canadian farmers that are family farm corporations (shares are held by family members). The legislation is meant to remove the benefits of income splitting to lower the effective tax rate.

Read more here ...

Proposed new tax rules — such as disqualifying capital gains earned by minors and restricting the use of family trusts for the exemption — could mean farmers take a big hit on their retirement plans.

Monday, 31 July 2017

U of Arizona Lectures: Plant Physiology and Controlled Environment growing

University of Arizona Controlled Environment Agriculture Center (CEAC) Lectures
on Plant Physiology and Controlled Environment Technology

Video Playlist:

  • Introduction
  • Light Intensity and Quality (part 1 and 2)
  • Photoperiod
  • CO2
  • Wind
  • Temperature
  • Humidity
  • Energy Balance 1
  • Canopy Environment 1
  • Energy Balance 2
  • Canopy Environment 2
  • Plant Nutrition
  • Substrate
  • Water Relation
  • Sink Source 1 and 2 (the playlist has these in the wrong order)
  • GH Environment 1 and 2

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Taking Decoupled Aquaponics to the next Level (EU Presentation)

The four loop design allows for optimal nutrient levels in the plant loop, while maintaining low Nitrate levels in the fish loop with very little water loss. A desalination system allows desalinated water to flow from the hydroponic loop back to the fish loop.

A presentation by Simon Goddek (Wageningen University, NL) given during the EU Aquaponics Hub training school on 'Modelling nutrients, energy and growth in aquaponic systems' at University College Cork, Ireland, in April 2017. Filmed and produced by Em Cooke.

Friday, 30 June 2017

Bright Future for Aquaponics and Vertical Farming

A recent report by Market Research Future forecasts stable growth for the aquaponics market at the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.5% through 2022. Another report forecasts the vertical farming market will reach $6 billion by 2022, growing at a whopping CAGR of 26%.

The market growth will be driven by increasing demand for healthy, pesticide free food, and rising urban populations. A rising awareness of the healthy benefits of fish, and the increasing use of aquaponics for research purposes will also undergird the market going forward.

The Global Vertical Farming Market is expected to reach approximately USD 6 billion by 2022

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Montreal's Zero Waste Urban Rooftop Greenhouses

These rooftop greenhouses harness the lost heat the tops of the buildings resulting in energy usage that is half of a traditional greenhouse.

Monday, 5 June 2017

Urban Organics Mammoth 87,000 sq ft Indoor Aquaponics Farm

Urban Organics just opened a new 87,000-square-foot indoor aquaponics farm in St. Paul, Minn. As one of the largest commercial aquaponics facilities in the world, the urban farm has the capacity to grow 275,000 pounds of fish and 475,000 pounds of organic produce annually. This is 50 times larger than the pilot plant at Hamm's Brewery built in 2014. A virtual tour of the pilot facility is shown below.

Currently, the farm is at 30 percent capacity for produce, and they project being at full capacity by fall. The pilot plant raises striped bass and tilapia and grows basil, kale, watercress and Swiss chard. The new facility will raise 275,00 pounds of Atlantic salmon and arctic char fish each year and about 475,000 pounds of organic greens including kale, bok choy and arugula once they hit full stride.

Read more here and here.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

The Filtration System at Ouroboros Farms

Thanks to Potent Ponics for this interview with Ken Armstrong explaining their filtration system.