Students working on the hydroponic table

A table that you pedal could be the future of gardening and food security, according to a group of students in Humber’s Sustainable Energy Hands-On Workshop (SEHOW) club.

The group has built a functional table that powers a hydroponic gardening system – that is, a garden  without soil – with pedal-powered renewable energy, which helps the fully automated table run without the need for on-the-grid electricity.

“Creating an integrated, automated garden that stores power for off-grid application while not taking up any extra space is not only interesting, but engages people to rethink how and where they get their food,” says Zack Pennock, a student in the Sustainable Energy and Building Technology (SEBT) program who worked on the table. “We are making it easy for people to understand and begin growing their own fruits, vegetables and herbs.”

SEHOW tackled the table after the idea won funding from Chartwells Campus Projects, a program that encourages postsecondary students to create projects that address issues of food and food sustainability on campus. Students from a variety of programs, including SEBT, engineering, programming and marketing joined forces to create the table, which will be unveiled at Humber’s upcoming Earth Week (March 27-31, North and Lakeshore campuses).

“I love the idea of giving back to the Humber community while promoting sustainability and self-sufficiency,” says Harmohit Chohan, also in the SEBT program. “This project has brought together students and faculty from different disciplines and is proof that the Humber community can come together to promote green initiatives as well as healthy living. It has been an amazing experience so far, and I’m excited to see what’s next for the project.”

To get a look at SEHOW’s hydroponic table (and give it a pedal for yourself), check out their display on Wednesday, March 29 from 11 to 2 in the L Commons (Lakeshore) or on Friday, March 31 from 8:30-11:30 a.m. in the LRC (North).

For more information on Humber’s Earth Week activities, go to humber.ca/sustainability.