The Weather Makers designed an Eco Oasis which is based on John Todd’s Eco Machine, to help nature recover more quickly. John has proven that with such a machine it is possible to regenerate heavily polluted areas and that this ensures the return of target species in an area. The Weather Makers have transformed this technology to build a food web to kickstart ecosystem regeneration in an area. Moreover, the Eco Oasis also produces water, this helps to regenerate arid areas.
The six cylinders with water form a breeding ground for special micro-organisms, called diatoms, which improve water quality and are an important source of food. Six large tanks were built and filled with water from a nearby ditch. The water circulates through the tanks. It provides the optimal living environment for the diatoms to grow.
Diatoms absorb the excess nutrients from the water and capture CO2 and nitrogen from the air. They convert these substances into glass skeletons and when they die, they sink to the bottom. This makes them the perfect 'carbon sink'. In the meantime, they provide food for fish, which in turn produce fertile excrement that we can use on land. The Eco Oasis can be connected to an outside stream and can act as the breeding chamber for plankton, zooplankton, and small fish.
Within the Eco Oasis, a food web is built up based on the nutrients present in the water from the environment. A number of conditions such as temperature and the concentration of oxygen in the water could be influenced to stimulate the growth of certain organisms. An ecosystem is ordered in a certain way.
As a result, the Eco Oasis is an incubator for life. It forms the basis of an ecological food web and so increases the natural productivity of a bigger area. This leads to more growth of biomass, more primary production and ultimately more evapotranspiration, cloud formation and precipitation. This provides cooling, protection and a beautiful green environment.
For the upcoming months students from the HAS University of Applied Sciences will work with the Eco Oasis, doing tests and looking into the possible effects on the surrounding environment. The students will focus on improving the systems water quality aspects, researching the relation between energy input and organic output and developing implementation methods.