World’s first Integrated Urban Aquaponics Conference and workshops
This private research aquaponics farm in subtropical Australia is producing Pak Choi using raft hydroponics. The sole nutrient is waste from Barramundi table fish. The yield is 1.5 tons of vegetables for every one ton of saleable fish. The Pak Choi shown here is three weeks old. Photo: Geoff Wilson, Aquaponics Network Australia.
Conference to be held in Brisbane in 2012
Integrated Urban Aquaponics
Conference and Workshops
in Brisbane in July, 2012.
May 26, 2011.
The world’s first conference and workshops focused on integrated urban aquaponics in “protected cropping” systems producing organic food, will be held in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia from July 25 to 27, 2012.
The conference and workshops will be organized by the Aquaponics Network Australia (ANA), solely-owned by Brisbane-based Aquaponix Pty Ltd., in conjunction with the Green Infrastructure Network Australia Inc. (GINA Inc).
The conference will be held at Whites Hill State College (WHSC), at Camp Hill, Brisbane, Queensland, which will soon begin developing Brisbane’s fourth aquaponics unit for better teaching science, maths and integrated sustainability to high-school students.
Geoff Wilson, director of ANA and president of GINA Inc., said: “The three-day Integrated Urban Aquaponics Conference will be promoted to about 2,500 high school science teachers and about 150 high-school curriculum developers and trainers in Western Pacific countries.
“Aquaponics is the modern name for a technology used thousands of years ago by the Chinese (fish in rice paddies) and the Aztecs (chinampa structures that are still serving Mexico City). It combines intensive fish farming with intensive growing of plants from fish wastes converted to plant nutrients..
Over the last 30 years aquaponics technology had been refined mostly via universities or researchers and investors in the United States and Canada. It is now starting to become popular in Australia for better teaching of high-school science and technology, and for hobby growing of organic food at home,” Mr Wilson said.
Three key speakers/workshop leaders at the Urban Aquaponics Conference will be:
• Sarah Kaatz, education director of Nelson & Pade Inc., Wisconsin, United States. She has a Master of Science in Fisheries Biology and Aquaculture from Iowa State and a Bachelor of Science in Biology from University of Wisconsin, United States. Sarah is involved in workshops, the extended stay learning program and working with schools to integrate aquaponics into existing curriculums for students of all ages.
• Professor James Rakocy, who recently-retired from 30-years of aquaponics teaching at the University of Virgin Islands – the world’s first aquaponics education unit.
• Dr Wilson Lennard, the first Australian to complete a doctorate degree in aquaponics, who is now developing commercial aquaponics in Australia and New Zealand.
Other expert speakers are being recruited from Australia and New Zealand.
The world’s first Integrated Urban Aquaponics Teaching Unit is proposed as one of five parts of the Whites Hill State College’s proposed Sustainability Education Pilot Project.
Geoff Wilson said: “We plan to develop this Integrated Urban Aquaponics Teaching Unit with all speed so that teachers, students and parents – plus community groups – can be quickly shown many aspects of what we are trying to achieve.
Over an estimated five years of development, the WHSC aquaponics unit will integrate and teach on:
* Three styles of aquaponics.
* Water harvesting (rain, dew and solar-powered air moisture harvesting).
* Water cleaning (via greenery and new pervious paving technology).
* Non-carbon electrical power supply (solar panels cooled by greenery for 10% increase in electrical power).
* Solar powered and wood-waste water heating for both fish and plant growing efficiency.
* Recycling of clean organic matter into fish feeds (via worms and insects).
* Algae production for fish feeds containing both protein and omega-3 oil.
* Wall and roof greenery for improving the psychological and air-cleaning benefits of the structure.
The integrated teaching unit is planned to be fully operational by July 25 and 27, 2012, when Whites Hill State College will be the venue for the Integrated Urban Aquaponics Conference aimed at helping Western Pacific high school science and maths teachers learn how to better teach their subjects.
The conference is the first event proposed for the Whites Hill State College’s proposed Sustainability Education Pilot Project. The WHSC event in 2012 is expected to be on the psychological and air cleaning benefits of greenery in classrooms, offices and homes..
Further Information and pictures:
Director, Aquaponics Network Australia,
President, Green Infrastructure Network Inc.
32 David Road,
Holland Park 4121, Qld.
Phones: 0412 622 779 or 3411 4524