Click here for more info and the signup form for the Aquaponic and Hydroponic Organic Coalition: http://aquaponicsassociation.org/organic-coalition/
The National Organic Standards Board is considering revoking aquaponic and hydroponic organic eligibility.
We feel strongly that AP/HP – if practiced accordingly – embody the spirit of organic that consumers expect when they see the organic label: 1) AP/HP are highly sustainable and employ nutrient recycling; 2) AP/HP do not need synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, or antibiotics; and 3) A large body of research shows that the roots of hydroponic plants contain the same quantity and diversity of root bacteria as soil plants, which is central to organic’s “soil-plant ecology”. And, finally, if we’re going to make necessary changes to our food system we have to retain incentives for new sustainable growing methods, rather than taking away incentives — banning AP/HP would be a step in the wrong direction.
Danielle, Jayson, and Kemani testing to see if the water is ready to support fish in the J.O. Wilson Elementary School aquaponics system in Washington, DC.
Here’s a pic of Mr. Carroll Bryant, contemplating his forthcoming aquaponic system and drinking a tasty energy elixir. Carroll and his wife Janet have a 50 gallon fish pond. I met Janet at some Washington, DC DPR urban agriculture events and she wondered if it was possible to do aquaponics with their backyard fishpond….more to come!
The University of the District of Columbia (UDC) hosted a great event last week showcasing their large aquaponics system at the East Capitol Urban Farm in Washington, DC (across from Capitol Heights Metro station). This system is one of UDC’s “urban food hubs”, which are designed to “improve Food Security and Sustainability in DC neighborhoods through food production, food preparation, food distribution, and waste and water management”. UDC is planning a food hub in each of Washington, DC’s eight wards. Each hub will include aquaponics or hydroponics. Check out their urban ag website here.
“The Hootie”, an indoor aquaponics system by Anacostia Aquaponics named after my cat. Its just getting started with some young plants and a few small goldfish.
We are making progress on our new aquaponics system at JO Wilson elementary school in Northeast DC. Hopefully we will be ready to start some fish and plants in a few weeks!
Today Anacostia Aquaponics Director Brian Filipowich attended the 2016 Ecological Economics conference with two major questions:
ONE — How do we quantify the benefits of Aquaponics; and TWO — How do we monetize the benefits of aquaponics?
Good stuff so far, more to learn, more to do….
DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson and Council Member Mary Cheh are working to make positive changes to the Urban Farming and Food Security Act of 2014.
Two main provisions of the Act are to identify DC-owned vacant properties to convert them into farms; and also to provide landowners with tax incentives to lease vacant land to farmers and gardeners throughout the city. But unfortunately, although passed into law these provisions haven’t gone into effect because they are stuck in regulatory limbo. Hopefully Chairman Mendelson and Council Member Cheh are successful in their efforts to address these issues.