The Role Of Aquaponics

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Food security in a society is influenced by economic resources, political stability, water resources, climate change, land availability, population, and agricultural education. These factors constitute a fragile equilibrium in which any instability could cause a population to lose their reliable source of food, leading to malnutrition and hunger (Premanandh). In areas where there is drought, lack of arable land, political unrest, overpopulation, and large impacts of climate change, technologies are being developed in order to try to address food insecurity. One technology that has been developed in order to produce sustainable agriculture is aquaponics. Aquaponics is the integration of hydroponics and aquaculture to create a system in which …show more content…
Hydroponics is the use of water to grow plants eliminating soil and aquaculture is the cultivation of aquatic species or plants in water, but together in aquaponics both plants and animals are grown in one living symbiotically (The Aquaponics Source). The purpose of aquaponics is to create a form of agriculture which is generally self-supporting, water and fertilizer efficient, cuts out the need for fuel in plowing or pumping high volumes of water, and cost-effective. Although aquaponics has yet to be implemented on a large scale, the potential benefits could be of using this form of agriculture in regions of high drought where less water will be used. Organizations such as the EU and UN have already shown interest in this form of agriculture creating projects such as INAPRO that are researching ways to overcome the limitations of large scale aquaponics (INAPRO). Through its innovative form of producing little to no waste, not needing soil, and removing the need for chemical fertilizer, using aquaponics can be a viable form of alleviating food insecurity. Once running, the aquaponics system is very simple to maintain and with no use of soil, soil-borne diseases and pests …show more content…
It has been seen by the food and agriculture organization as “the most suitable farming technique in arid regions” (Somerville et. al). This form of agriculture can be used both in fertile areas and also in regions that are full of non-arable, dry, saline-prone, and expensive land. Although water is of course required for this system it is much less than the water that is wasted through the traditional agricultural systems that are currently being used. By recycling the water that is once put into the system through the plants filtering the water and the fish later living in it and so on, little to not water ever has to be added or replaced (Somerville et. al). In addition, the wastewater from fish that would be dumped into open streams in a regular aquaculture fish farm/tank are instead recycling and broken down into fertilizer by bacteria eliminating the need to discharge water (Diver). In areas such as Southern California that are experiencing drought but most of the population has strong food security, wasting less water can greatly help in conserving the already small amount the city has to work with. The use of aquaponics has already been proposed in regions such as Egypt where there has been political instability in addition to growing population rates and water stress. If Egypt were to adopt aquaponics into their

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