Post WW2, 1st world nations established lifestyles based on abundant food, cheap power, freely available fresh water, plenty of work opportunities, the convenience of private motor cars and the contraceptive pill; never had a generation had it this good! Unfortunately, as the world population soars towards 8 billion people, our planet earth is facing challenges that threaten to destabilise life as we know it – and not only for the 1st world.
In researching this article, I came across many articles listing challenges to our global society and planet, but to me the primary crisis is the current world population (7.7bn people) and the alarming rate at which it continues to grow. There are simply too many people for the world to support! Strangely, the sites I visited seldom mentioned this directly as if it is a taboo to speak of slowing the birth rate: one site listed 42 global challenges in the 21st century – without mentioning the human population once! We must urgently reduce the rate of births if we are going to address any of the other challenges sustainably, as every one of the other problems has its roots firmly planted in the unsustainably high human population.
Many of the challenges that face Earth are noticeable in geo-climatic symptoms such as climate change, an increase in natural hazards such a fires and flooding, rising sea levels, low rainfall and increased atmospheric heat. These factors appear to be as a direct consequence of human activities associated primarily with forest clearing, burning fossil fuels, accelerated methane production and mono-crop farming. In line with our booming population we also generate many different forms of pollution and have recently become aware of the wide ranging dangers that micro plastic pollution represents to fish, and to entire eco systems.
As the world population grew through the 1900s, we had an increasing impact on natural resources, such as fresh water, plant species, fish stocks and wild animals, causing more people to turn to agriculture to feed themselves. However, the lower rainfall associated with climate change means that these agricultural activities are often no longer suitable to feed the farmers, increasing food insecurity, malnutrition and poverty. Many rural people move into cities to seek work in the hope of improving their situation, increasing the complexities of urban planning and the drain on state coffers.
The situation seems bleak and our future seems unattractive. However, there are things we can and must do immediately to arrest the situation and start winding back the clock of environmental harm. Firstly, the taboo must be set aside, and world influencers must instantly and urgently find ways of educating and incentivising people to have smaller families. Secondly, we need to profoundly reduce all forms of pollution. Thirdly, we need to adopt planet friendly methods of farming that satisfy a range of desirable objectives simultaneously.
I believe that Aquaponics has massive potential to play a role in these suggested solutions by producing a range of healthy, tasty crops including both fish and vegetables, using technology that can be run completely on renewable energy sources. Furthermore, Aquaponics requires little new water, reducing the water debt relative to traditional crop farming methods. Aquaponics can also be performed in rural areas, combating urban migration and the associated challenges. Finally, Aquaponics turns biological wastes into human food, reducing environmental impacts associated with pollution and simultaneously producing crops. What is there not to love about Aquaponics?!
We have scheduled the following Aquaculture Courses planned for 2019:
21 & 22 October Aquaponics Course, Pretoria
23 – 25 October Aquaculture Course, Pretoria
16 – 20 September Practical Aquaculture Course, Aquaculture Academy, Grahamstown – This is an excellent opportunity to obtain both the theory of fish farming as well as practical experience in spawning tilapia and catfish, feeding correctly, managing water quality, sorting fish, aquaponics plant care and many other related skills.
To obtain further information email us on firstname.lastname@example.org
Aquaculture Products for Sale
We offer a wide range of products to the Aquaculture Industry. These products can be viewed and purchased from our secure online store at Aquaculture Store.
Hatchery Pumps: We are offering a special on the hatchery pump for as long as stocks last. This pump can deliver around 10m3/hr (the manufacturer claims 13m3/hr) and is perfect for use in hatcheries. The special price is R1195 inclusive of Vat.
Iron test kit: Normal price R289 special price R225 inclusive of Vat.
If you need anything that is not listed, drop me an email and I will attempt to source it for you.