Godsil Reflections On Kenyan Oakland Roboticist Aquapon Farmer Eric Maundu Heart Haus Workshop
Eric was way over the top brilliant, modest, and authentic. Strikes me that his commitment to the good cause comes from down, down deep, and I have a hard time imagining him not giving it his all for years to come. He has intensely studied the “earth story,” and drew the elegant and complex relationships of geosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, biosphere, and “noosphere” with the energy providing sun all over the walls of the brainstorm and bread room.
Here’s a media report on his “Smart Aquaponics.”
Eric has applied his robotics and software background to making gardens smart. His company, Kijani Grows, sells kits, components, installs gardens throughout the Bay Area, and teaches classes on aquaponics. :
“I feel knowledge of electronics and software programming makes me a better farmer than just having a hoe. Gardens that can communicate for themselves using the internet can lead to exchanging of ideas in ways that were not possible before. I can test, for instance, whether the same tomato grows better in Oakland or the Sahara Desert given the same conditions. Then I can share the same information with farmers in Iceland and China.”
Aquaponics, for Eric, is a modeling of the earth story. Sensor enhanced aquaponics is a resource to provide support for human stewarding of these small worlds, tools for maintaining the balance of it all.
He moved from the earth and aquaponics modeling into a lucid and intelligible discussion of electronics and digital sensors, mixing white board graphics with sensor displays, then moving to the computer to display the results of his path-breaking labors. He maintained a passionate edge for 6 straight hours!
He has had a hard time making ends meet while deeply involved in his research and development. It all began after his return to Kenya following a 10 year green card journey, where a passion for farming, absent in his childhood as a farmer’s son, was intensely sparked. He hopes to farm in Kenya in time, and help people do sensor enhanced farming everywhere. But he can’t imagine making a living just growing food, agreeing with us, that the growth and distribution of knowledge, tech support, and experiences for schools and “early adopters” will be important source of revenue.
I intuit that you and he are at the beginning of an incredible journey of major importance. To me his work and his character are in perfect pitch complimentary with yours. I would welcome the “communion” and devote my peddling and connecting resources in support. I am also eager to introduce his Great Work to “Aquapons Across the Waters.”
I told him, and I mean it, that he is a man of destiny and it would be my pleasure and honor to support his quest on up through my 100th birthday.
Milwaukee and Chicago Integral Urban Homes For Global Diffusion of Aquaponics and Other Green Technologies
If you are primarily interested in discovering the story of a major commercial aquaponics project, Pat Wilborn’s Port Fish is the destination that beckons.
If you are thinking more about advancing a family or school sized system,
then a tour of the Sweet Water Milwaukee Heart Haus or the Sweet
Water Chicago Think Do House makes much sense.
Aquaponics As Jewel of Integral Urban Home and STEAM Development For MPS Schools
Chicago “Sun Times” article on Chicago’s Think Do House.
- International hostel
We are bringing into fresh being a 21st century homes and cottage industries local local economies in global networks.
For each American neighborhood, let us help manifest a
special house that’s multiform, multivalent, and mutualistic in essence…
Sweet Water’s Chicago Think Do House
With 40 Global Fulbright “Partners”
High Regaraded University Videos on Aquaponics
Cross Continental “Partners”
Indo American Aquaponics Institute
Video clip of IAAI Fund-Raising Program: A. Foundation Project
St. Alberts College
UN FAO Gaza
here is a very brief intro to aquaponics featuring Jesse Blom of SWF
pbs growing a greener planet series - this one is quite a bit longer, detailed, journalistic….starting with the history of SW Organics, and then detailing SW Foundation’s work in Chicago.
this one is more stylistic, great cinematography, features a few of our team members:
creative time summit video
Interview With Dr. Nicholas Rose, Churchill Fellow/National Coordinator, Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance
Godsil. You have won a Churchill Fellowship and now book contract from your Great Work on the food sovereignty movement in Australia and beyond, guided by the proposition that “(t)he global movement for food sovereignty is perhaps the foremost 21st long tradition of human struggle for freedom, diversity and equality.” Has this movement in Australia become part of any major political leaders’ policy agenda? If so, do any positions stand out for possible inclusion in USA party policy prescriptions? (I am hoping to inspire some food sovereignty activists to win a place in the 2016 Presidential primaries).
Rose. “Yes – to some extent.
The two main parties (Coalition Liberal / National – conservative political grouping, and Australian Labor Party – traditionally the party of the trade unions) have said that they want a strong agriculture and food sector in Australia. However there has for some decades been bipartisan agreement in favour of a policy agenda of free trade, increased commodity production and deregulation, to ‘let the market rip’, as it were. This has fostered a ‘get big or get out’ dynamic which has seen an exodus of farmers from the land (an average of 7–10 per day over the last three decades, likely to double in the next decade) and increasing levels of stress and anxiety, linked to high debt levels of unfavourable terms of trade, for many of those remaining. The recent National Food Plan of the ALP (2010–2013) and the Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper of the Coalition (2013–2014) largely entrench this trajectory.
The National Party was formerly called the ‘Country’ party and its main constituency has always been farmers and rural and regional communities, although with the extreme urbanisation of Australia during the 20th century this political base has shrunk a great deal. Conscious of the hardships that many farmers are experiencing the Nationals have recently raised concerns about food sovereignty-related issues such as increasing external ownership of Australian farmland and infrastructure, the impacts of cheap imported foods on local producers and manufacturers, and the power of the supermarket duopoly (Australia’s two main supermarkets, Coles and Woolworths, control between them 75–80% of the grocery sector – the most concentrated in the world – see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UxGsu4lkcIc&app=desktop).
The food sovereignty agenda, as we developed it in the Peoples Food Plan (http://www.australianfoodsovereigntyalliance.org/peoples-food-plan/), was to a significant extent embraced and adapted in the food and agriculture policy that was taken by the Federal Greens party: http://greens.org.au/policies/sustainable-agriculture. This speaks of recognition of the value of urban and peri-urban agriculture, of support for agro-ecology, and the need to invest in localised food systems.
This policy agenda was and is supported by many farmers and rural communities. There is however a deep sense of loyalty to particular parties amongst certain constituencies, even when their policies and platforms run directly counter to the best long-term interests of those very constituencies.
The Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance, as a non-aligned and non-party political organisation, does not affiliate itself with any political party. Obviously we were pleased to see the Federal Greens adopt so much of what we had developed. Our challenge now is to work to make increasing parts of this agenda ‘common sense’ across the food system.
The Sweet Water Foundation’s There Grows the Neighborhood initiative brings resources from a global social learning and production network. These networked “partners” include Boomer Millennial Partnerships experimenting ways of harvesting multiple values from mindful configurations of Bits Atoms Cells.
Integral Urban Homes, Agroecology Work Learn Tours, and Community Farms are three initiatives that will be explored at a Sweet Water/Chicago Museum of Science and Industry Hacking Hunger conference in Spring/Summer 2015 at the Perry Avenue Community Farm and Think Do House.
Since its 2010 incorporation, the Sweet Water Foundation has advanced in collaboration with Earth Renaissance”partners” across the waters, as well as some major institutions we are proud to be working with.
Introducing Aquapons Across The Waters Social Learning and Production Network
I am cofounder of Indo American Aquaponics Institute and Aquapons Across The Waters. The State Department sent me to address 300 Indian engineers, scientists, and ecopreneurs in 2011 and from that also grew Aquapons Across The Waters connected learning and production network.
Please spend an hour sometime reviewing these links from
Godsil Navigator YouTube
Pratt Earth Renaissance
Li Earth Renaissance
Blom Earth Renaissance
Indo American Aquaponics Institute
Godsil Harvard Business School
To determine if we are worthy of your attentiom.
After that hour call me at 424 232 1336 and I will reciprocate your hour with an hour of tailoring your aquaponics tours with optimality in mind.
Work to do!
Exploring The Story of the Sweet Water “Big Bang”
Below is my most recent effort to condense the complex story of the Sweet Water Universe for those who were re-ignited in their hopes by Danny Glover’s visit to the Sweet Water Foundation/Chicago State Aquaponics Innovation Center. Linking repurposed factory aquaponics/urban ag experiments with university and school partners—the model we propose for Detroit, and every city, including our partners in Mumbia, Kolkata, Shanghai, Johannesburg, etc.
Danny Glover @mrdannyglover
There is brilliance & artistic ingenuity coming out of #Chicago South Side. Truly OFF THE CHAIN! @SweetWaterFDN pic.twitter.com/ZQz6rBRiKh
Deconstructing MultiDimensional Sweet Water Universe and Understanding Meaning of Sweet Water Organics(SWO) as “The Aquaponics Big Bang”
(l) An experiment with the Growing Power Aquaponics Model in a factory building failed.
- lighting and heating too expensive for single bottom line success—no doubt about this one
- rectangular tanks inferior to circular tanks for fish movement and waste collection—methinks this is Rakocy view
- sunken tanks inferior to tanks at highest elevation so gravity not pumps does the work—Charlie Price offering
- depth of grow beds inadequate for healthy root formations
(2) An experiment with the Growing Power Hybrid Enterprise, with multiple income streams and triple bottom lines has been wildly successful
*With today’s most advanced aquaponics features, with the fish in the factory and plants in linked greenhouses, with spaces in the factory also available for small urban ag and aquaponics demonstrations & models, workshops, eco tourism, R&D, and community gathering, like is happening at Emmanuel Pratt’s SWF Chicago State repurposed shoe factory—success awaits! Multiple bottom lines bring pro bono genius and donations, multiple income streams bring revenue to supplement sale of fish and produce, and accelerate the advance of ecologically conscious, active citizen, learning how to get along.
- Sweet Water Foundation leads the world in school installations, teacher curricula development, and inspiration/support for aquaponics innovation centers on every continent
- thousands of pages and images can be followed from this link about this assertion http://www.milwaukeerenaissance.com/EarthRenaissance/HomePage
(3) Sweet Water Organics Provided the R&D Support For Sweet Water Universe and the Milwaukee Grand Alliance Manifesting Sweet Water Unraveled
Joe Recchie provided brilliant analyses and support for the transition of ownership from SWO to SWF, framing the SWO team as heroic in providing the R&D start-up support for the entire venture. This view was held by some of our more enlightened local leaders, but not enough, in my mind, to inspire support, especially when the local daily media source paid absolutely not attention to the SWF’s value, and continues to ignore. Hence…Chicago as the new center of gravity for the Sweet Water Universe.
Sweet Water Advancing A Perpetual American ®Evolution Spawning Another Great Lakes Heartland MacArthur Genius
From the point of view of the commercial classes, who focused on single bottom line possibilities of Sweet Water Organics(SWO) and paid little attention to the foundational work of the Sweet Water Foundation(SWF), the Sweet Water story is on hold.
From the point of view of those, like myself and Emmanuel Pratt, who focused on the ®Evolutionary possibilities (per Grace Lee Boggs’ “The Next American Revolution”) of Sweet Water, our “utopian visions” have been vastly exceeded by the facts.
I have been close to the stories of two MacArthur genius award winners, and I will be surprised if the mutualistic symbiosis of the Sweet Water Community(SWC) with Emmanuel Pratt’s network does not yield the MacArthur Award for Emmanuel and a continuing flow of high recognition for the current Sweet Water star, i.e. the Sweet Water Foundation. Know, however, that Sweet Water is a key player in a global integral ecology movement of on the ground experimenters who will also win our ongoing appreciation on the stage and at the edge of history, like Dr. Subra Mukherjee of the Sweet Water inspired Indo American Aquaponics Institute.
The Commercial Class and the ®Evolutionary Sweet Water Debates
Some of the original SWO “partners” expected quick commercial success with a single bottom line focus. Emmanuel Pratt and I were not of that view.
We saw Sweet Water Organics as a necessary research and development project with too many unknowns to expect quick green money bottom line performance. Our Sweet Water was an emerging network of practitioners, and the Sweet Water hybrid, i.e. the Academy(SWF) and the farm(SWO) was seen as a science lab, a multifaceted 21st century school “without walls,” an eco-business incubator, an emerging community center, and possibly a model for urban infill development with a “Sweet Water Village” potential.
The Sweet Water ®Evolutionaries proposed a focus on multiple bottom lines, e.g. ecology and equity, as well as multiple-income streams, e.g. fish and produce sales, but also compost, worms, worm castings, small plot intensive garden structures, workshops, tours, urban agriculture and aquaponics installations. And they also framed Sweet Water as a necessary experiment, a long march through series of trials and error, evolutionary gropings, cognizant that tens of millions of mindful acts are required for anything of enduring substance to manifest. “Success is not final, failure is not fatal, what counts is the courage to continue.” (WC) Or, as Al Sharpton’s Grandma told us, “Life’s ont about falling down. It’s about getting yourself back up!”
From Riding Whales and Dodging Bullets To Astonished Participants In Miracle Cascades
We believed aquaponics to be quite possibly humanity’s most earth friendly and prolific method of food production, a major response to the challenge of food security, global warming, and the transition from industrial cities of consumptive capitalism to organic cities with cultures of respect and care, for all life forms, in harmony with nature. We opened our story to the public and the media from the get go, despite the possibility of substantial mistakes. Zorba the Greek was present in my mind’s eye, as was this mantra: “You wished it stranger. You left the path of your own free will. And you are lost if you believe in danger.” The cause was important enough that it had to be tried. And, we’re still trying!
Emmanuel and my core theory was that Sweet Water Organics could make a sufficient mark with its start-up team as to attract new sources of capital: green dollars, social, cultural, and spiritual capital that would launch the good ship Sweet Water for fruitful projects over the years and throughout Milwaukee and beyond.
Sweet Water, Alive and Well. Every City Deserves a Sweet Water!
Sweet Water, the Farm and the Academy, and the Community,
Is a museum alive, an evocative destination, and a science lab!
Sweet Water is a high tech, high science,
High craft, high art
Center for safe and delicious food production—
fresh fish and produce, locally sourced!
Sweet Water is a center for hands on education
For young and old.
A center for attracting and energizing
Inventors, innovators, enterprisers…active citizens!
Civic minded celebrators!
Transforming our great industrial cities
Into even more inspiring organic cities.
Every city in every country,
In all of earth’s great civilizations and cultures…
Deserves a Sweet Water and a Growing Power!
Sweet Water Multigenerational Experiments For A Higher Humanity
In communion with all life forms
To be continued…