Circular City + Living Systems Lab

August 1, 2021

Urban Integration of Aquaponics

Forthcoming book chapter in Urban Agriculture and Regional Food Systems, Elsevier


Aquaponics is a circular food production system that combines fish and plant cultivation. Its benefits can further the urban agriculture movement through sustainable food production, community support, and education. While the growing system is well understood, its prospective integration into cities, regional foodsheds, and circular economy require detailed consideration from both built environment and economic perspectives. The proliferation of aquaponic operations beyond backyard hobbyists has emerged recently as technology has evolved to support industrial scale production. In this context, existing operations are analyzed based on their technical attributes, economic viability, and sustainable benefits. Five key operation types are described and examples of each are discussed. The chapter concludes with a preliminary understanding of how urban aquaponics can contribute to sustainable food systems and further the regenerative aims of the circular city model.


Proksch, G., Horn, E., Lee, G. (2021). Urban Integration of Aquaponics: Advancing Integrated Food Systems for the Circular City. In Urban agriculture and regional food systems: A global handbook on science, engineering, social, economic, business and environmental aspects of the urban food revolution, Peter Droege (Ed.). Elsevier. (forthcoming)