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live aboard floating platform for the poor – aquaculture as a sustainable business

Home Forums Archive Structure Designs live aboard floating platform for the poor – aquaculture as a sustainable business

This topic contains 30 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by Avatar of Jack Jack 2 years, 5 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 31 total)
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  • #1301

    As discussed in other threads living on the ocean is already happening – superyacht owners do it. Fact is, it is a very small and very exclusive segment of society, that has near to cero impact.

    It was also discussed on other threads that using concrete shell structures we can lower the cost of a “floating live aboard homes” to average European and US city housing prices – doing it much more economic than traditional YACHT industry.

    Exploiting the benefits of concrete shell mass production we could make living on the water (including the open sea) the cheapest available housing solution on the planet – problem is:

    If we give a floating concrete shell platform to the poor people and enable them to live aboard go offshore and live relative comfortable for only 3000 USD on a 6m diameter float that is not a “yacht” but still much better than a wooden hut in a cramped settlement – a option that has not existed yet – will we create a overfishing problem? Is there a way to develop sustainable aquaculture solutions.

    Wil

    European Submarine Structures AB

    concretesubmarine.com

    #10825
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    Here in Florida, this would be a good business since there isn’t to much competition and virtually no regulations. The only problem is that it seems to be a low profit margin business and somehow labor intensive. Maybe X could give us some insight here, he’s the fish man.:-)

    Florida is # 1 producer of farmed clams in the nation. It was around mid 80′s or so when the federal gov gave a lots of grants and loans for people who wanted to get in the business. It did picked up, around Florida Bay and the West coast of Fl.

    #10827
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    cumbersome spherical floats? The seastead IS the fish farm. My design, allows for some of the Modules to be used as fishfarms.

    #10829
    Avatar of Farmer
    Farmer
    Participant

    wrote:

    will we create a overfishing problem? Is there a way to develop sustainable aquaculture solutions.

    I like to play with the engieneering questions but here, the life sciences is where I’m really qualified.

    Yes. Every pound of herbivore requires 10 pounds of plants and every pound of carnivore (that’s you) requires 10 pounds of herbivore.

    100 lbs. of kelp etc. per pound of person should about do it.

    Not really, oportunistic feeders (that’s just what it sounds like: you, racoons, rats ) tend to really tear up an ecosystem. they are the last to starve because they can take advantage of any food source.

    On land: 20 acres of land sustaines one hunter-gatherer human. 3 acres of land sustains on human using mid 20th century agricultural tech.

    In this case we are moving backwards; we will need a lot of plant matter to stay healthy, even more to stay happy..

    #10832
    Avatar of Jack
    Jack
    Participant

    Hey farmer, You know were omnivore’s, but what about the things ive read on being able to live of 1 acre? Thats provided you share 3 acres with 3 other people? (the natural family unit) is that wrong? i thought it was about a 4 yeild crop rotation & proper storage.

    I think in Asia they perfected the system of 1 acre a person long before the mid 20th century.

    Yeh good find ellmer, VERY practical industry to be used offshore, but i saw in a mag that they (a uni) were testing automated fish cages that sail around in big circles & pop up when the automatic feeders run dry. (they looked almost the same as the picture, but they had a feeder thing on the top & small navigaional thrusters, looked like a pregnant submrine)

    #10836

    Lets just accept for a moment the “therory” that “flat concrete shell raft solitions” can be developed into being the most economic housing solution on the planet. We create a opportunity for tousands of “non filthy rich people” to float out and look for a living and fortune on the oceans.

    It will not be a problem in the sense of “space available” – but given the fact that the open ocean is mostly a productive desert – we need to develop some kind of sustainable living base or things will not work. The society segment that is living on the ocean for the moment (super yacht owners) draw their living from their “swiss bank accounts” – this is not possible for the “seasteading mainstream”.

    Gardening the ocean desert to feed a growing population might be a solution – i think we will have to step away a bit from the concept of acres/head as it is handled for agriculture.

    Is there a estimate of the “possible sustainable food production of the oceans” ?

    #10840

    sure there will be no “farmland” as floating island – the floating shell structure will be for “housing” purpose nothing else. It will replace the “ship” as working platform – not the “farmland”.

    The “gardening” must work in the ocean in the sense of “aquaculture” not at “farmland created on the ocean” – the community will produce “seafood” not “crops” . If we do meat and crop in floating structures it will be “cultivating cells” , hydrophonics and similar.

    I agreee that a couple of small seasteads can live on tourism and ship/yacht services – but probably not a larger development. Aquaculture, Mining, Energy (wave, wind, geothermal) are things that can create more permanent settlements due to their “high business volume” capacity.

    Tourism is already attended (cruseships beach condos), fishing is in free fall towards no future, so there must be something new and sustainable that has a “future” and where living on the ocean is a advantage not a draw back.

    Most important anything we will IMPLEMENT on large scale in the next 50 years must be “invented” and “somehow solved and out there” already today.

    Just remember internet – connected computers are around since the dawn of DOS – internet is just the massification of a “long invented thing” on “larger scale”. Somehow large scale implementation has a quality of its own. The core of seasteading is “large scale implementation” of existing “waterfront development”. So making just another “glorified cruiseship condo” will not lead us anywhere. Social relevant developments are the massive implementation of techniques invented 50 years ago – this is kind of a general rule.

    #10838
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    I dont know if a “correct” estimate is possible. 1 acre /person for self sustainability its about right. But even as low as $ 20/ ft we are looking @ $870,000.00/ acre, an empty “4 walls” concrete shell, just to build it!! By the time soil its brought in, irrigation, seeds, labor, its going to be in excess of $ 1 Mil, to feed 1 person!! It doesnt make NO sense.

    The self sustainability WILL NOT come from “agriculture @ sea”. NO WAY! The $870,000.00 spent to build an acre will bring a better return to the investment if allocated as a fishing and fish processing facility or as a 100 room hotel-resort. Maybe a 30% of the “under the sun” area of a seastead can be used to plant some fresh vegetables but that would probably translate into a 5-10 % MAX of the daily consumption,…

    I think self sustainability will be achived mainly from 2 industries: fishing and tourism, that will generate enough revenues to cover for the rest of the expenses. If this is true, than, in order to accomodate this 2 industries the flat raft shell (floating artificial island) IS the best solution out there. What do you guys think?

    #10842
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    ONLY 2 industries but MAINLY. I totaly agree with “no seasteading without massification”. But it has to be an INCREMENTAL massification. The same with industries. I pick those 2 because they work and it will be wise to start with something that’s working and proven so. I do also agree that ” Aquaculture, Mining, Energy (wave, wind, geothermal) are things that can create more permanent settlements due to their “high business volume” capacity.” But can we start with that when, first of all, the construction of our first seastead(s) will bite a big chunck of our starting capital, and second of all, they are still expensive? Its still much cheaper to dock an oil tanker alongside to refuel and have diesel for the next 6 month, and produce energy using diesel generators, then to invest upfront in 100 wind generators and 1000 solar panels. Dont get me wrong, I am all for wind & solar, and I had them both on my sailboats and they cover all (100%) of my elecric needs, but when you have industries aboard, the power requirment are much, much higher. Lets allow for a gradual transition. The parallel would be the transition from the agrarian society to the industrialized one.

    I also agree that “….making just another “glorified cruiseship condo” will not lead us anywhere” or “‘Tourism is already attended (cruseships beach condos)” but we are NOT that. If we accept for a moment that the artificial floating island is the way to go, then there is no comparison, because cruiseships are a “vehicle” while we are a “destination”.

    #10844
    Avatar of elspru
    elspru
    Participant

    sure there will be no “farmland” as floating island – the floating shell structure will be for “housing” purpose nothing else. It will replace the “ship” as working platform – not the “farmland”.

    The “gardening” must work in the ocean in the sense of “aquaculture” not at “farmland created on the ocean” – the community will produce “seafood” not “crops” . If we do meat and crop in floating structures it will be “cultivating cells” , hydrophonics and similar.

    I agreee that a couple of small seasteads can live on tourism and ship/yacht services – but probably not a larger development. Aquaculture, Mining, Energy (wave, wind, geothermal) are things that can create more permanent settlements due to their “high business volume” capacity.

    Tourism is already attended (cruseships beach condos), fishing is in free fall towards no future, so there must be something new and sustainable that has a “future” and where living on the ocean is a advantage not a draw back.

    Most important anything we will IMPLEMENT on large scale in the next 50 years must be “invented” and “somehow solved and out there” already today.

    Just remember internet – connected computers are around since the dawn of DOS – internet is just the massification of a “long invented thing” on “larger scale”. Somehow large scale implementation has a quality of its own. The core of seasteading is “large scale implementation” of existing “waterfront development”. So making just another “glorified cruiseship condo” will not lead us anywhere. Social relevant developments are the massive implementation of techniques invented 50 years ago – this is kind of a general rule.

    You are so right.

    I’m not sure why I didn’t think of it earlier.

    There is hydroponics, from which we know the essential nutrients required for plants.

    from wikipdedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydroponics

    essential elements; among them are Fe (iron), Mn (manganese), Cu (copper), Zn (zinc), B (boron), Cl (chlorine), and Ni (nickel). Chelating agents are sometimes used to keep Fe soluble.

    and from another source http://www.hydroponicsbc.com/nutrients.html

    Major Elements

    Nitrogen (N) – a major element needed by all green plants. It is transported from older growth to new growth. Deficiency – lack of lush green color, especially in older leaves. Toxicity – soft, dark green leaves, long weak stems, poor root development and slow to maturation.

    Phosphorus (P) – an important mineral that stores energy in plants and animals, also a flowering agent. Deficiency – stunted, dark green leaves. Lower leaves turn yellow and die. Leaves have brown or purple spots. Toxicity – small, curled new leaves. Early maturity, large root systems.

    Potassium (K) – a nitrogen catalyst needed for enzyme manufacture. Needed in large quantities, although plants do not use a tremendous amount. Deficiency – brown, necrotic (dead) tips and edge margins on older (lower) leaves followed by yellowing of the entire leaf. Dead brown spots on older leaves. Slender, weak stems and small seeds. Toxicity – saline condition, marginal leaf burn, wilting and drying due to poor water uptake.

    Calcium (Ca) – helps form the structural parts of the plants (it is a major element in cell walls). Counters acidity (low pH). Deficiency – new growth affected first. Root tips turn brown and die. Hard, stiff new leaves with dead edges and brown spots. Stems are stunted and woody, blossoms fall off. Little or no fruit. Toxicity – rare, but can cause an alkaline (high pH) condition, wilting, iron and potassium lockup and deficiencies. Calcium is not very mobile in plants.

    Magnesium (Mg) – is important in photosynthesis and the chlorophyll molecule where light energy is converted to chemical energy. Chlorophyll gives plants their green color. Deficiency – chlorosis (yellowing) of older leaves between the veins. Later, leaf tips curl, entire plant turns yellow and dies. Magnesium is mobile and is transported from older to newer growth. Old growth is affected first.

    Toxicity – edges curl on leaves, small stems, signs of potassium deficiency.

    Sulfur (S) – is a building block of amino acids and proteins. Used in small amounts, it aids transpiration and transport of other elements. Deficiency – rare, but young leaves turn pale green with yellowing along the veins, stems turn hard and woody. Plants are stunted and spindly. Toxicity – saline condition, wilting.

    Iron (Fe) – is an important constituent of enzymes and plays a role in photosynthesis. Iron is not very mobile in plants and can be “locked up” if the pH goes much above 7. Deficiency – yellow or white chlorosis between veins of younger leaves. Stunted new growth with spindly stems. Flowers drop off before opening. Toxicity – deficiencies of other elements, brown spots on leaves.

    Plants are a form of green algae,

    the needs of red marine algae, or other kinds of algae we grow,

    may be somewhat different, but we have a starting point.

    So we can test the water in the gyre we want to farm,

    and then achieve a good balance at least near our farm-boats.

    There is also biofouling, which is a garden on every boat.

    One of the reasons people with biofouling have a steady catch,

    is that fish in the ocean follow the garden around.

    The main concern I have with biofouling,

    is that it might after extended periods of time,

    sink the vessel through excess load.

    though that might take a long time,

    and in the meanwhile the corrals or seashells,

    can be ground up and used for cement.

    In conclusion, biofouling and hydroponics,

    are the “old technologies” that can be taken advantage of,

    to allow for mass scale sustainable ocean seasteading,

    with copious food production.

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    #10863
    Avatar of Farmer
    Farmer
    Participant

    “Plants are a form of green algae,”
    Other way-round Sir.
    “{There is also biofouling, which is a garden on every boat.
    fish in the ocean follow the garden around.”
    I suspect you are correct.
    First off, I did not mean to imply the word “farming” in this context meant anything like having rows of corn like you drive by in the Midwestern U.S. One good saltwater spray and all of that would die overnight.
    I imagined floating nets full of kelp just below the surface that fish etc. would feed on or floating seacrete reefs to attract game fish.
    Jack, yes, Eastern agriculture has always been more efficient than Western. They also eat less and lighter food. Note: something low nutrition like a water chestnut takes a lot less to produce than an oil-rich vitamin packed avocado.
    With hydroponics you can sustain a person with a few 100 sq. ft. but it scares me. Even stable things like plants and soil are susceptible to things like a disease that kills of an entire crop before anyone notices anything is wrong. Somehow it just makes me nervous.
    .
    The gyres are notable nutrient free, People assume this is simply they are so far from land. The good news here is that because we will be bleeding wonderful magic stuff like iron into the surrounding water we are likely to attract a lot of potential food that would not otherwise be there.
    I suggest we “bait” the water by adding the right nutrients and then act more as ranchers than farmers.
    #10868
    Avatar of Jack
    Jack
    Participant

    Well I dont like seafood all the time, but i do understand probably 60-80% of the food will be derived from the sea in some way, however if people can produce floating fish ball cages thingy’s why not floating Hydroponic ball thingy’s.

    sorry for the bad photoshop concept pic.

    Im no Engineer, (WE NEED SOME ON THESE FORUMS) but, i dont see the cost being more than 300% the origonal cost, if you add plasticated glass pannels on the upper section of the cages & Concrete or Fiberglass pannels to the submerged section.

    Then you could grow them in (wall attached) grow bags on the lower half of the cage as shown to let the sunlight hit the bottom of the cage, I cnat be bother going into the ideas of how you would water & feed it & access etc. for a concept drawing only,

    you get the idea.

    I found this when i was looking for pictures to err borrow.

    Things like Strawberrys & stuff like that would love this id say, maybe it would be better for fresh fruit & hebs than actual bulk products, but if you make em big enough then its just a matter of scale & cost that limits what you can grow.

    And your talking about Disease, well Algea can have lotsa problems to, infact algea closes down MANY fishing areas for months at a time because they infect & kill fish, or cause toxins in fish that harms humans when consumed.

    However The risks of disease with crops is much smaller when controlled hydroponics areas managed by quallified staff using proper hygiene, & UV scrubbers.

    Good things i can think of:

    • Not much more complex than the fish cages to produce
    • Many Veg & fruit can grow nearly as well in ambient light as they would in direct light
    • A half sphere would (I THINK) give more land area in a smaller space than a flat field/glasshouse?
    • Plasticated glass or those heavy duty plastic sheets you can buy at a DIY store, are better & cheaper than glass. (I bought some to replace my sisters green house glass after some kids broke all the windows, she was pissed at me for not buying her the glass, but it cost me about 80% less to fix all the windows with plastic glass than regualar. & next phone call i had from my sister, she was telling me the little basterds were throwing big rocks & they were bouncing off, I also think it keeps more heat in)

    Also these underwater wents, could be protected under UN LAW & national laws by Legal bodys of the U.S & many Euro zone countries, russia has tried to block many u.s companys trying toexploit these things for years, & when you read thorugh some of teh WWF documents they seem to be getting these places put off limits to exploitation.

    So mobile seasteads are likely to face similar problems to man made islands offshore.

    #10869
    Avatar of Jack
    Jack
    Participant

    Actuly i think domes & flat green houses are crap idea for gorwing crops, I think Big Triangles woudl be better, that would give you more land area no? think about ti? 4 sides exposed to light ?

    #10872

    Your are probably looking at the wrong issue – there is no doubth that in the 21st century there are ways to produce crops and veggies in floating pods. The engineering of doing so is not a issue at all. The cost is. Can you compete with crop farming in Iowa? – If not – why do it? – farm tuna (one tuna is worth a car in the international market) – you surley can compete with the farmer in Iowa on tuna production.

    You make money and buy what you can not produce with high efficiency – this is what global economy is all about – seasteads will not work if they are “outside global economy”. Independence is a dream – no country (including US and China) is independent in production of all the goods it consumes. You get gradual independence if you can produce enough value to buy from any provider you choose.

    So freedom on the ocean is not about growing your own veggies it is about doing a serious business to produce the money you need to import the rest of the stuff you need for a decent living and do more of it.

    #10873
    Avatar of OCEANOPOLIS
    OCEANOPOLIS
    Participant

    ‘So freedom on the ocean is not about growing your own veggies it is about doing a serious business to produce the money you need to import the rest of the stuff you need for a decent living and do more of it.”

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