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High density food production

Home Forums Archive Infrastructure High density food production

This topic contains 30 replies, has 12 voices, and was last updated by Avatar of elspru elspru 4 years, 6 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 31 total)
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  • #6779
    Avatar of tomohern
    tomohern
    Participant

    Yes, Michael, you’ve got it exactly right. If all we wanted to do was to start a floating platform with a strip club and have hydrogen production and make a bunch of money, we could do that now. Its called the Cruise Ship option.

    The rest of us who are looking at actually looking for a way to transform a ship into a society need to go through these thought experiments and consider the options available to make this work in reality.

    I haven’t been around here long, but I have read a lot of “on my seastead…” type messages. Everyone seems to think that they are going to somehow have their own seastead filled with clones of themselves. I really think the “I’m going to do … and make a lot of money” mentalities are counterproductive. Figuring out how to get the most people out to sea as soon as possible needs to be the first step. The more people we have out there, the greater the number of solutions to new problems we will have. That means working out the basics like food production (because not everyone can afford to have their food shipped out to the seastead.)

    #6785
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    If thats all you guys got from my post, so be it. I dont think in terms of my seastead,…I am trying to be very realistic. Thats all.

    OUR seastead is going to cost money to be built. That is a certitude. If WE want this seastead to be OURS, we have to spend OUR money to build it. That is a certitude too. If I decide and YOU decide to spend hard worked and saved money to build a seastead together than WE have the right to own a piece of that property directly poportional in size to the amount of money that each of US spend. Another certitude. If some of YOU think that in the initial phase of seasteading it is wise to spend YOUR capital on food production facilities, do it. It is YOUR money and YOUR right.

    In terms of food production, I wonder how many of you have picked a tomato of a vine, or plant potatoes, or farm anything,…I also wonder how many of you know how long before the first crop of,…anything,… Because 6 month its a long way to go on OUR seastead on fish,canned and dried foods alone, mates.

    In terms of “counterproductive mentalities” of making money and shipping food, otherwise known as survival, I am sure they will be replaced in time by “ultra effectiv mentalities” of figuring out how to get the most people out to sea as soon as possible, since in our agrarian seastead society there is a plentifull supply of kudzu root, mushrooms, algae, and seaweed. Yam, yam.

    #6787
    Avatar of DM8954
    DM8954
    Participant

    The whole “on my seastead” thing is just an enthusiastic short-form of “my idea on how our seastead would or should work” for most people. It gets a bit tiresome to read it so often, even though I’m sure I’ve done it myself a time or two, but you have to remember where people are coming from when they say it… and most often it’s not from the perspective of a future dictator/overlord of a small clone army at sea.

    So, the most recent arguments boil down to ‘make lots of money in ways we already know will work and buy everything we need with the profits’ versus ‘be as self-sufficient as possible and trade for whatever we can’t make ourselves with extra fish’. Again. It seems to be a main debate which is mostly about personal preference rather than from a genuine fear that one or the other is absolutely impossible to accomplish. Some of the entrepenuers feel that it might be too much work to be worth it and that the limit on variety and quantity is unacceptable at this point in the process. Some of the self-reliants feel that the risk is too great to simply hope that prices won’t fluctuate beyond what our microeconomies can handle or that our goods and services might not remain profitable enough for long-term sustainability and true independance from existing governments. Did I sum it up fairly enough?

    None of that is even the point of this particular thread, so put down your flamethrowers for a minute, before someone pulls the trigger. The original poster simply gave an idea on how an enclosed system might be able to create a sustainable cylce for efficient, high density food production. If you think it won’t work, give constructive feedback about where something could go wrong or has been miscalculated. Let’s try to stay on track.

    Personally, I hate mushrooms. I’ve never tried Kudzu but I’m a pretty picky eater. All of that aside, though, I don’t see why this wouldn’t work. It obviously needs more research and experimentation to figure out the right proportions and ratios for optimization and to test if anything proposed breaks the cycle. I think that as long as you don’t deplete nutirents from the cycle, by dumping sewage into the ocean for example, it should work in theory. Perhaps we’re overlooking something, though, you never know.

    This version seems to work… maybe try expanding the system for greater variety or going into more detail on what you already have and consider what physical requirements each section would have.

    #6788
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    Of course everything works in theory. The original poster was up for comments. Feedback is not always” constructive”. If u are here to make friends u better get a pet. In practice, nothing works right and everything breaks down when its most needed. All the food produced on a nonexisting seastead will taste like chicken. Of course we’re overlooking something,….we always do. There is no seastead, no design, no plan, no money.

    #6791
    Avatar of Michael-Hawkins
    Michael-Hawkins
    Participant

    Everything does break down when most needed, including hydroponics, food shipments and refrigeration. That’s not the point. Neither is devising the best purpose for a seastead. I do not know what you want out of it, and frankly I do not care nor do I care to share in this thread with you what I might want. So I’ll reserve my intentions as well as my opinion on going out to sea in order to make money with somehting that already exists on land to myself.

    What I want to discuss is the basic principle behind this setup. Would it work? Why not? Any ideas for usuable plants? (thank you for the Kenaf, Torizan) Is there some Kudzu disease that I should know about? Any nasty side effects of eating too much mushrooms …

    #6798
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    The whole purpose of this website IT IS how to best devise a seastead. That’s the point. You do know what I want. The same thing that you want, that one day we will live on a seastead. Otherwise we both wouldnt be here. Also, you have already shared w/me what you want by posting this thread and stating that you’d very much like some comments. You didnt say you want ONLY positive comments,…This is a debate, we are not arguing or fighting here. I am sure you know mushrooms better than me. I am sure that you know that growing mushrooms (given the right space and technology) can be a lucrative business for the internal seasteading market and for export too. It is a fact. So, if this is your passion and if you want to do that in a seasteading format, than we have to also look @ the big picture of how to incorporate this venture in the seasteading design. That is why I was crunching the numbers on the construction, price per foot etc. Space will be a very expensive commodity on a seastead.

    It is your prerogative to continue to share or not your intentions not only w/me but w/everybody here. If we are here to create a new society too, w/more freedom, I can only hope that my openess and sometimes vocal opinions shud not be interpreted as hostility, as per actual social status quo.

    #6800
    Avatar of Michael-Hawkins
    Michael-Hawkins
    Participant

    I don’t percieve you as hostile, I’d say you are already convinced of your ideas and are trying to convince me off them as well. But we are not the same, we, our lives are diffrent. We are not debating, you have brought up a subject that I have no intention of discussing here, and I do not

    “Au contraire …”? Destination is a personal thing. This site may very well be about designing seasteads, but it does not dictate what I would do with mine, you do not dictate what I would do with it. This thread is not and has never been about the best purpose for a seastead. It is not about money or economics. It is about one idea: a highly dense food production method.

    You have made some points concerning that idea, namely the low return on the investment required to run a scheme that can be done cheaper and easier on dry land. Care to debate about that?

    It is not a moneymaking plan, it might be on dry land, but not on the high seas. Coding or running a rendering farm is cheaper on dry land as well, as is running a stripclub. All of those would be more profitable with a solid base under your feet (and clientel nearby in the latter example). I assumed you would come to the conclusion that ultimately, profit is not the goal of early seasteading.

    By all means, argue to the contrairy. I just want to grow some food out on the big blue puddle and any advice on the matter would be appreciated.

    #6801
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    Dont waste your time.

    #7944
    Avatar of mahasamoot
    mahasamoot
    Participant

    I see this discussion as two different business plans to provide food on the seastead. Such a business will be needed–as food will be needed. Michael Hawkins wants to grow local. Oceanopolis wants to import food, as food on the world market will be cheaper than local produce. Both businesses may coexist.

    I do not believe that Mr. Hawkins will be under cut. Why? Because while food on the world market is very cheap, and Mr. Hawkins can’t compete against containers full of world produce–he won’t have to. The Seastead is a tiny hamlet of a few hundred people, who won’t be eating fresh produce by the container. Importing fresh produce would likely be done with a small seaplane on a daily grocery run–which will be a 740 km round trip. This would also cost a lot! Mr. Hawkins will also find that many on the Seastead will like the idea of buying local produce. He may do well to organise his business as a co-op, as many will be happy to do some of the work themselves–thus, cutting labor cost. A boat might do a weekly or fortnightly grocery run, focusing on frozen meat and packaged foods.

    As to the brothel business, I’m sure it will be welcome, but I doubt that it will be a major source of foreign revenue. It’s easier to drive down to Mexico. Plus, selling the Seastead as a space for swiming in a sea of sin, would likely cause problems with the gringos–making it difficult to raise the capital to float this boat.

    Aquaculture seems like the best bet for foreign revenue and capital. Due to a tragedy of the commons, over fishing is a major problem. The Chinese are crazy for shark fin soup. This causes Australia heart burn as Indonesians are coming down into Australian waters and hunting sharks to the brink–they just cut off the fins and dump the rest (which is nuts as shark steak is tasty). So, if feasible, a shark ranch would help to alleviate Australian heart burn and win Chinese customers. Thus both of these groups would have a vested interest in the Seastead remaining afloat. Blue-fin tuna are an other example that was in the news yesterday.

    Rather than viewing the Seastead as a disutopian centrally planned colony, we should sea it as a bundle of interlocking business plans. So, one guy has a plan for a shark ranch, another has a blue-fin business plan, another a cultured pearls plan, another has a supplies and services plan for these businesses… et cetera. Once the first big plan gets the capital, all the others will be far more feasible, and dominoes fall.

    #7945
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    That was the whole idea, that a seastead will be, as you very well put it, “a bundle of interlocking businesse”, in the maritime field.

    And yes, it is all a matter of design since design follows function. If 100 people own 500 sq ft each on a seastead and they all run various businesses aboard they are limited to THEIR 500 sq ft to do it. We have to design the seastead w/ these busnisses in mind. If Mr. Hawkins wants to grow food on his property its ok w/me as long as he can pay his share for the cost of maintenance and operation of the seastead. He doesnt have to try to convince me or the others that he can feed himself (or other) off 500 sq ft of land, because,…he cant

    Now, you said “Aquaculture seems like the best bet for foreign revenue and capital.” That’s far from the truth. It is a low profit margin time consuming venture. It takes 4lb of food to get 1lb of farmed raised fish. (10lb for blue-fin tuna). There is a lot of overhead involved, etc,.. I just finished planning up a aquaculture business with a TSI member, on a seastead project that we are working at. Yes, we are going to do it since it will be profitable in the long run, plus we will be able to cut some costs by building our own cages, keeping them docked alongside the seastead instead of anchored and locate the seastead out at sea with easy access to fishing for pelagic fish for feeding the stock.

    But a brothel, or bar or any other “sin” oriented businesses will beat it by far in terms of profit margin… We cant do those because we will operate in the “puritan” American EEZ,..to start. I’d wish we were in the Thai waters:-).

    #7961
    Avatar of mahasamoot
    mahasamoot
    Participant

    OCEANOPOLIS wrote:

    And yes, it is all a matter of design since design follows function. If 100 people own 500 sq ft each on a seastead and they all run various businesses aboard they are limited to THEIR 500 sq ft to do it. We have to design the seastead w/ these busnisses in mind. If Mr. Hawkins wants to grow food on his property its ok w/me as long as he can pay his share for the cost of maintenance and operation of the seastead. He doesnt have to try to convince me or the others that he can feed himself (or other) off 500 sq ft of land, because,…he cant

    I question your assumption on the cost per m^2. The high cost is do to the need to survive a hundred year storm, and be very comfortable for humans. This also means the design isn’t ambitious, because you don’t want die in the debuging of the new concept. However, as soon as you’ve got a safe base, you can experiment with more ambitious concepts.

    I’ve been looking at modular floating breakwaters. That type of platform might do nicely for growing food, as they would be cheap floating ferro-cement boxishes. The area behind them is also valuable. Multistage breakwaters may also be useful. I found a patent for subsurface break waters that are meant to blunt the big waves and let the little ones thru. They are modular and designed to be re-configurable in place to get the desired flow patterns with an iterative process in the implementation phase. If the floating breakwaters are the second stage, they’ll take much less of a pounding.

    OCEANOPOLIS wrote:

    Now, you said “Aquaculture seems like the best bet for foreign revenue and capital.” That’s far from the truth. It is a low profit margin time consuming venture. It takes 4lb of food to get 1lb of farmed raised fish. (10lb for blue-fin tuna). There is a lot of overhead involved, etc,.. I just finished planning up a aquaculture business with a TSI member, on a seastead project that we are working at. Yes, we are going to do it since it will be profitable in the long run, plus we will be able to cut some costs by building our own cages, keeping them docked alongside the seastead instead of anchored and locate the seastead out at sea with easy access to fishing for pelagic fish for feeding the stock.

    Very interesting. Sounds like you’ve been working on this a lot longer ;-) I’ve been more interested in the engineering aspects, so I haven’t studied the farming aspects much yet… but the engineering needs are zero until there’s an income stream :(

    OCEANOPOLIS wrote:

    But a brothel, or bar or any other “sin” oriented businesses will beat it by far in terms of profit margin… We cant do those because we will operate in the “puritan” American EEZ,..to start. I’d wish we were in the Thai waters:-).

    But in Thai waters you have no advantage. My thot is that the “sin” businesses will be ok, as long as they aren’t the only or biggest reason to Seastead. Once you’re doing something else, you’re perceived differently, so the “sin on the side” is excusable–you’re just a “well rounded” community… Fish farmers with a casino and a brothel, verses “vile unrepentant sinners.” The politics come down to, the choice between a source of campaign contributions, or an opportunity for grandstanding.

    #7971
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    For our project we estimate somewhere between $ 20-25/sq.ft. The seastead will be a floating one, 100′ x 36′ and will operate in coastal or protected waters.

    What do you mean by subsurface brakwaters,…submerged? Can you post a link to that patent, pls?

    In terms of how the so called “sins” are perceived by whoever, I dont care. If having sex, drinking, gambling or doing drugs are sins, I wonder what are we going to call the past, present and future atrocities commited in the name of God…

    I am not trying to build a church. :-)

    #7989
    Avatar of mahasamoot
    mahasamoot
    Participant

    OCEANOPOLIS wrote:

    For our project we estimate somewhere between $ 20-25/sq.ft. The seastead will be a floating one, 100′ x 36′ and will operate in coastal or protected waters.

    There you go, that’s more like it in terms of cost.

    What do you mean by subsurface brakwaters,…submerged? Can you post a link to that patent, pls?

    http://www.freepatentsonline.com/EP0576771.html You can download the full patent in pdf format. It was filed in 1992, so I think it’s expired. These are ment to be attached to the sea floor near shore. So they won’t work as is, however a modifed version could be very nice. I think the biggest chalenge would be station keeping.

    In terms of how the so called “sins” are perceived by whoever, I dont care. If having sex, drinking, gambling or doing drugs are sins, I wonder what are we going to call the past, present and future atrocities commited in the name of God…

    I am not trying to build a church. :-)

    With all this talk of churches and sins, Ted Haggard comes to mind.

    #8013
    Avatar of thebastidge
    thebastidge
    Participant

    You don’t have to be a church-goer, you just have to avoid being lynched by those who are; that entails a little bit of PR work.

    #9276
    Avatar of J.L.-Frusha
    J.L.-Frusha
    Participant

    To put forth the idea that some 3600 sq. ft. platform, with a hundred people, is the best starting place, I beg to differ…

    The exploration of the concept is best proven on land, first. I am in the process of trying to come-up with a very small cabin and greenhouse set-up. All of the non-meat and non-grease/oil waste should get thoroughly processed by 1) methane digester, 2) aerobics system. From there, it should go into an aquaponics system and produce vegetables, fish and/or fresh-water prawn.

    As I get this working, I plan to add poultry and rabbits to the cycle. Since they require less space and eat green stuff, I can feed them on the duckweed and vegetable left-overs, as well as plant trimmings. Fish-meal can be a supplement to the chickens diet.

    Once it’ll handle one persons’ needs and waste, it can be scaled-up. I expect it to take plenty of tweeking, but the basic design is just a starting point.

    Meanwhile, I am collecting info on oyster farming, kelp farming, stable floating structures, towable ones and whatever catches my eye that seems practical…

    I’ll be starting with a 55-gal. methane digester, matching aerobics system and the “Barrel-ponics” aquaponics system.

    When I get to build a SeaStead, it won’t be intended for a hundred people. Just my immediate family. Consider it a farmstead at sea. Probably off the Houston/Galveston coast.

    Eventually, I hope to incorporate some small pigs and mini-cattle.

    By being mobile, I can dodge major storms, as needed.

    Will it work? Maybe. Is it worth the effort? definitely.

    Later,

    J.L..F.

    If you can’t swim with the big fish, stick to the reef

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