Science

Seaweed Farms To Heal Earth's Oceans And Climate

By Paul Pajarillo , Nov 25, 2015 04:09 AM EST
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Thimble Island Oyster Co. owner Bren Smith utilized an entire ocean column to grow kelp, oysters, clams and scallops in a concept that he calls 3D ocean farming. The seaweed farming method helps clean up ocean pollutants and gives benefits to the ecosystem.

Smith utilized an ocean column to grow restorative species in what he calls 3D ocean farming. This farming method provides food like oysters, clams, scallops, and kelp, and at the same time makes oceans habitable, healthier and cleaner. Also, the system provides other jobs for fisherman rather than going out to deep sea areas to catch fish.

Bren Smith was a high school dropout who started to work on boats at the early age of 14. He worked during the height of ocean industrialization, breaking ocean ecosystems with their hunts. The fishing system they used back then sent fishes deep down in the ocean floor, making them hard to catch instead of luring them to shallow waters. With dynamite fishing, personally he have thrown thousands of pounds of dead catch back to the sea.

This old fishing method of his changed 15 years ago when he started farming for ocean crops in Long Island South. He grows 30 to 60 tons of seaweeds per year. This marine algae has been known as a superfood as it contains high calcium, has antioxidants, balance body pH, nutrient-packed, and contains lignans, a chemical compound that has anti-cancer properties. Also, the ocean ecosystem benefits from this farming method as it cleans nitrogen and carbon dioxide deposits.

Seaweed farming not only gives the people protection from storms, but also give fishermen something to do besides fishing in the deep. This creates new forms of coastal man-made ecosystems centered on seaweed farming.

The potential scale of 3D ocean farming is far more greater than any other means of algae cultivation globally. Beyond food, seaweeds find many uses like medicine and fuel. Also, it offers refuge to aquatic species from increasing ocean acid threats. Not to mention that from ocean crops, sea farmers can produce food, fertilizer, animal feeds, medicine, biofuel and cosmetics.

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