Today in class we discussed aquaponics, a food production system that uses fish waste to fertilize plants. Aquaponics simulates an environment that one could possibly find out in the wild, with multiple levels of an ecosystem feeding into each other in order to produce food. These systems range from very small systems to large and complicated apparatuses.
As I wrote about in my last post, I was fortunate enough to spend a semester abroad at the Island School, a school that focuses on sustainable living in the Bahamas. For my final project at the school, I got together with some of my friends to make a video project on the aquaponics system that they have installed at the Island School. They have a small tank of tilapia that feeds through an apparatus, ending in several beds of lettuce. They produce so much lettuce that they no longer need to have any shipped to the school. The school also plans on expanding their aquaponics system in the future, with different types of plants growing in multiple beds. One major drawback, however, is the food that is needed to feed the tilapia. This prevents their aquaponics method from being an entirely closed system. One day they hope to eliminate their reliance on fish feed in order to create a truly sustainable and efficient process.