Can plants follow in Jesus' steps and walk on water?
In 2050 there are going to be more than 9 billion people on the earth, which means that the food production has to increase by 70%. This also puts pressure on freshwater availability as 70% of the freshwater available for humans goes to agriculture. A way to reduce the need of freshwater for agriculture is to use brackish water. One way of doing so would be to use so called hydroponic growth i.e. growth of plants without soil but instead directly on water.
Based on this challenge, the SalFar partner University of Gothenburg, has been granted access to the marine research station Kristineberg in Sweden to perform a pilot study to screen for plants suitable for hydroponic growth using a mixture of sea water and fresh water i.e. brackish water. Thus, they will examine what plants can be grown on saline water. Not only will it be possible to select salt tolerant plants for hydroponically growth in greenhouses but also to implement growth of salt tolerant plants in saline rivers and floods in areas where e.g. the soil is saline and cannot be of optimal usage.
The pilot study will start during late summer 2020 and end by December 2020. If you want to learn more about this study you can contact Professor Henrik Aronsson (email@example.com), Head of the Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences at University of Gothenburg.