Just stumbled across and it’s pretty fascinating!
The Life Aquaponic, a non-profit that designs aquaponics systems and trains teachers in aquaponics education for developing communities are on a mission to set up a Sustainable Aquaponics Systems in Surkhet for Maggie Doyne’s KOPILA VALLEY. Like myself, I am sure many of you may be wondering what on earth aquaponics are – well get the lowdown below!
I really like the idea and think it would be great, especially since it seems very sustainable and has a long-term vision. If you think it’s a great idea for Kopila Valley, then do visit the Kickstarter where you can support with contributions starting from $5 and more!
PS. More on aquaponics and the project on The Life Aquaponic blog!
The first goal is to build a large, sustainable aquaponics system to feed the residents of the Kopila Valley community.
Aquaponics is a combination of aquaculture (fish growing), and hydroponics (growing plants without soil) in a self-contained system which recreates the natural relationship between plants and wildlife. Fish and plants develop side-by-side and can be harvested to produce a healthy high-protein and nutrient rich diet.
A simple aquaponics system grows six times more per square foot than traditional farming, allowing any surplus vegetables and fish to be sold for extra income. Planting and harvesting can be done standing and working at waist level, meaning aquaponics uses 70% less energy than traditional farming.
These systems are easy to build, almost entirely self-sustainable, weather resistant, and use 90% less water compared to conventional agriculture.
By building this system, we can help the residents of the Kopila Valley aim for complete self-sufficiency, massively reducing food costs and helping them provide for themselves a better quality of life.
Our second goal is to integrate aquaponics into the Kopila Valley Schools’ academic program.
We believe that by training the teachers and the residents of the Women’s Center, we can advance discovery and understanding while promoting teaching, training, and learning. We would use locally sourced building materials, fish, and vegetables, and aim to leave a tradition in which the residents of the valley have the knowledge and ability to create their own aquaponics systems long after we leave.
Sustainable development has never been more important in the world, and by training the teachers in the benefits and methods of aquaponics, we will be arming this community with the knowledge and skills to feed themselves for generations to come.
We critically need funds to launch this needed aquaponics program: to fund equipment and the resources for teachers to oversee and assist students. With your help we will supply:
Plants. We need seeds, planting media, trays, and equipment necessary for seeding, transplanting, growing and harvesting the most abundant and nutritious crops.
Fish. Namely fingerlings, fish breeding equipment, fish food, water quality test kits, nets, and other components necessary for maintaining a healthy fish population.
System Design. Our desire to use as much locally sourced material as possible means that we will buy as much of the system components as possible from within the Surkhet region. This means growbeds, PVC pipes, valves, and anything else we needs to get the system running.
Rainwater Storage Tank. Our proposed 1750 gallon 6′D x 8′H rainwater storage tank will allow us to constantly refill our DWC tanks with sustainable rainwater. Aquaponics uses 90% less water than traditional farming. The only water that we will lose is lost by evaporation and by the occasional biofilter flush. Having a rainwater storage tank will allow us to cut back on (and hopefully eliminate) the amount of freshwater that we use.
Solar Panels. As a progressive research team, we try to find the most cost effective and efficient solution in every aspect of our greenhouse. Your donations will help fund our use solar energy in order to power our pumps. This will allow us to greatly decrease our electric usage, as well as our environmental footprint. The ultimate goal is to eliminate the need for mains power completely.
Educational Materials. We are personally preparing as much of the educational material as possible. However, in order to leave the residents in the strongest position, we want to include high quality research books and instructional guides, as well as teaching resources which will cost money.