The Origins of REALNEO
Office of Citizen
Rest in Peace,
An Aquaculture / Community Garden vision for the East Cleveland Intergenerational Complex and NEO
Submitted by Sudhir Kade on Thu, 01/04/2007 - 17:21.
Outline Proposal for Integration of Aquaculture (hydroponic /soil based organic vegetable <--> fish farm setup)
The sustainable food generation mechanism proposed is bold and visionary yet pragmatic and creates multiple revenue streams as well as a sustainable food production cycle which will generate ongoing food and financial resources for the community for which it is designed. In this case we propose an indoor setup which incorporates separate bins for Tilapia breeding and hydroponic organic vegetation respectively. This setup is synergistic with either indoor or outdoor soil-based gardening and vermi-composting as well.
Beyond the baseline, we will add never before integrated innovations: alternative
energy powering the system, hi-tech quality control monitoring, and modularity.
This system will be a sustainable living machine which can serve quite well as a tactile
and experiential, intergenerational, and educational tool to enrich the lives of all who
interact with it or are exposed to it.
An excellent primer for outdoor aquaponics model : http://www.growseed.org/aquaponics.html
A second fantastic primer: http://www.growseed.org/growingpower.html
The key to sustainability will be to tailor the best practices and core elements from the outdoor model to the creation of an indoor model that can occupy minimal space – perhaps 1,000 square feet or so. The benefit of an indoor system is such that a year-round learning center is available for student use and the continuous production of fish and vegetables. If a greenhouse is utilized natural sunlight is also captured.
A great blog entry detailing a full scale greenhouse-based farm is here : http://smallfarms.typepad.com/small_farms/2006/04/where_theres_a_.html
and the fish most preferable for the project are Tilapia : http://grows<--!break-->eed.org/tilapia.html
Our Proposal for TIS Basement Production
If not, and without daylighting of some sort, artificial lighting will need to be incorporated. This is the innovative approach we are advocating for use in the Intergenerational (Star) Complex, which could utilize basement space to create a learning and produce center for students, staff, and faculty alike. The setup we envision would have the following requirements:
The most important factors in creating a successful sunless indoor Tilapia <--> Organic Hydroponic <--> Vermicomposting loop are the following:
1. Artificial Lighting: for this step we ideally want energy efficient grow-lamps
2. Feeding – duckweed grows and with algae feed the vegetarian Tilapia
3. Stock Densities need to be maintained for optimal performance! (see links)
b. Worms (red wiggler)
4. Water Quality
Revenue Streams generated by each sub-process:
1. Fresh , pollutant/metal free Tilapia for local economic opportunity
2. Organic Hydroponic produce (lettuce, cucumber, water-friendly, nutritious for all)
3. Less water friendly organics grown in community gardens or soil bins
4. Sludge from fish tank perfect feed for vermicomposting –-> worm feed
5. Nitrates created excellent for the process –bacteria in plant root ammonia of fish
waste converted by plants to nutritious nitrates for plants (Papyrus excellent) –
another possible revenue op
6. Vermicomposting red wigglers feed on sludge and chaff and produce waste
that is super plant food and fertilizer (castings) = revenue stream!
7. Soil enriched and cleaned organically – fungi can facilitate lead abatement by
consuming lead like a sponge, contracting toxicity into a smaller space!