By 2050, global food demand is expected to be 60-70% higher than today at the current rate. Water and arable land will be scarcer, a problem to be solved before entering a global food crisis.
Agriculture is already threatened by climate change, where sea level rise in some areas is causing flooding in fertile soils and the weather makes crops more difficult. To avoid a serious food crisis we must find alternative solutions for agriculture. Like Jellyfish Barge, a floating greenhouse that can give nature time to recover, and us some time to switch to more sustainable habits.
A floating modular greenhouse
Jellyfish Barge is a concept by Studiomobile e Pnat. It is a floating and modular greenhouse specially designed for coastal communities. It can help them grow without relying on soil, fresh water and chemical energy consumption.
The innovative greenhouse uses solar energy to purify salt, brackish or polluted water. There are 7 solar desalination units planted around the perimeter and they are capable of producing 150 liters (39,6 gallons) of clean fresh water every day.
Simple materials, easy assembly and low-cost technologies make it accessible to many communities that may not have a lot of funding.
How Jellyfish Barge works
The module has a 70 square meter wooden base that floats on 96 recycled plastic drums and supports a glass greenhouse where crops grow.
Inside the floating modular greenhouse there is a highly efficient hydroponic cultivation method which helps to increase water savings by 70% compared to traditional hydroponic systems.
The project takes the natural phenomenon of solar distillation and replicates it on a smaller scale for growing community crops.
Possible applications against the food crisis (and not only)
The modular design of the barge allows you to enlarge or reduce it and even customize it to suit various applications. I think of floating restaurants that contemplate both the vegetable garden and the kitchen. I am thinking of floating agricultural markets, floating community gardens that can move between the various collection points.
This octagonal structure can allow families and even communities living in coastal areas or near bodies of water to grow their own food. And without the need for land.
Not bad in a moment that is the prelude to a food crisis. A time when we are all exploring food production methods (such as vertical farms) that do not rely on soil.
In a future where perhaps a good portion of our food may not be grown in the soil, this floating modular greenhouse is a captivating concept.
Combine the best approaches to newly developed food production. Create a possible solution to the food crisis. A solution powered by renewable energy, however. It faces the growing scarcity of arable land and can move wherever it is needed.
Its multifunctional approach allows citizens to enjoy a weekly market, enables the farmers who run the facility to rely on a profitable business, and creates resilience and social innovation for the community.
Jellyfish Barge is an affordable, transportable and replicable solution for growing food within cities. If supported by the right investments, such a project can be sustainable and even profitable.