Powered by wind turbines, solar panels, and a biodiesel generator, the NY Sunworks Science Barge (now in Yonkers, New York) is a model for energy-efficient, sustainable urban farming. Using a hydroponic system that requires no dirt, the floating greenhouse uses less water and space than traditional farming in fields. And their state-of-the-art computer technology creates an optimized environment for nourishing tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries, basil, lettuce and more, “with zero net carbon emissions, zero chemical pesticides, and zero runoff.”
It’s not only a great educational field trip for school kids from all over the region, but continues to be an example of how growing local food in cities can be fresh, healthy, and sustainable, all while cutting down on transportation costs and fuel needs. From NYTimes.com:
“It’s a living science lab that on its first level is a demonstration of how we can grow food with fewer resources and that we can produce what we need without damaging the world around us.”
If you want to make your own hydroponic plant-growing experiments, there are kits for kids here and here. Or Instructables has written out steps for making your own hydroponic system using stuff around the house.
If you’re in the New York area, visit the Science Barge!