A Floating Farm for Hydroponic Crop Cultivation in Small Island Developing States/Thirsty California: The Fight for Water Resources

Kamara, Saffiata, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Norton, Peter

This paper explores the management of water resources to mitigate food insecurity. Specifically, my Capstone team aimed to improve the performance of an existing hydroponic crop cultivation system called the "Fold-out-Farm". The team implemented a rainwater harvesting system, found an optimal nutrient solution, and validated the unit's structural integrity using computer-aided design (CAD). The success of the system will be determined by plant growth and market feasibility. The goal of the project was to finalize the prototype of the system, however further research is needed to study the unit's socioeconomic implications and validate the structural integrity of the unit in the chosen area of implementation. The paper also examines how interest groups in California compete for their share of the water supply. The study highlights the various strategies employed by interest groups, including education, alliances, political influence, grassroots movements, and fundraising, to defend their access to scarce resources. The study concludes that the competition for water resources in California reflects a broader issue of social groups struggling for access to vital resources worldwide.

BS (Bachelor of Science)
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