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A green house of mangroves to ensure water for all

01/15/2012 - 10:00 AM

In 2030 half the World’s population will be without water. Here is the solution

The words skyscraper and countryside side-by-side might seem quite strange at first glance, especially when you’re talking about the problem of the World’s water crisis, and yet sometimes the strangest combinations can lead to the greatest intuitions, ones that could potentially be the solution to immense problems, such as the lack of fresh water that could hit half the planet’s population as early as 2030.

The visionary project, called the Freshwater Factory Skyscraper, consists of a skyscraper made up of greenhouses full of mangroves, which generate fresh water, located between the sea and the countryside in the lands of Almeria, in Spain. The idea of producing fresh water for the irrigation of fields is a futuristic concept, but one that is also economic and sustainable. The plan is being designed to be built in the province of Almeria, in the South-East of Spain, along the Mediterranean coast, one of the driest regions of Europe. Until about forty years ago the area was uninhabited and desert-like and yet today it is one of Europe’s major fruit and vegetable producing regions. Greenhouses cover more than 90% of the province’s land, which is why the area is nicknamed “the plastic sea”. The Freshwater Factory looks like a vertical sequence of transparent spherical greenhouses, which support each other, climbing the skyscraper structure to a height of 280 metres. The structure consists of concrete posts and floors shaped like circular basins.