How giant seaweed farms can feed fish and fix the climate

This story publicises  Sunlight and Seaweed: An Argument for How to Feed, Power and Clean Up the World by Tim Flannery, published by Text Publishing, describing how large offshore rafts, 1km or so square, buoyed 25m below sea surface, can be used to tether ropes, to create healthy new environments growing plant material, giant kelp, seagrass and others, to support growth of shellfish and fish. Kelp can grow as much as 600mm per day, absorbing at least 10 times more CO2 than rainforest, also reducing acidity in seawater to improve conditions for marine life.

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This is on behalf of local climate change group. Material is selected by Bernie McComb and does not necessarily represent opinion of whole group.
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1 Response to How giant seaweed farms can feed fish and fix the climate

  1. Nicholas Rivett says:

    All of us are controlled by surface area, the larger the surface area the larger to opportunity for biological activity. All surface area has a maximum colonisation before competition manages population. (Think cows per acre as an example to many and the acre can no longer produce enough food for the cows in the acre)

    The water column is substantially volume without any internal surface area within it. Add a reef, natural or artificial, ant it provided a foot fold for an explosion of life. However, the proposition that Kelp and other Algae fish etc can solve the perpetual escalation of Co2 is a pipe dream. If we continue in the way we run the world we live on.

    The laws of physics determine everything that happens in us and in all living things and out globe. The most important law of physics is the one that states, “Nothing can be made or destroyed only its properties changed.”

    So while we continue to use fossil fuels. our carbon foot print will continue to increase. Understand that all fossil fuels are sequestered sun light in a carbon matrix. The fossil fuel bits, coal oil etc, are sunlight sequestered, some 300 million years ago when Co2 levels started at about 2250ppm falling to about 300ppm over 60 million years.

    I suggest an interesting read is these two Wiki articles.

    Anyway it took 60 million years for the sun and photosynthesis to sequester that quantity of Co2. So we can’t reverse the increase in Co2 levels in our atmosphere while we continue to rely on Fossil fuels. It’s not a matter on not continuing to use these resources it’s just a matter of proper cost accounting and proper use of a resources to achieve the maximum benefit. Think of a tree that takes 100 years to become a millable log. Is its value only the cost of harvest, transport, mill, distribute and use or does it have a replacement cost value as well? Should we not value the: seed, its raising in the nursery, planting and maintaining for 100 years and insuring it against fire and climate change, land value charges. Only human arrogance dismisses the value of the tree and the diverse biological benefits that trees provide. All our resources are finite unless they are managed sustainably. Rape and pillage of our resources may seem like a cost effective management system but we are seeing the folly in this approach. We must full account, in monetary and side effect terms of the resources we use to our benefit.,

    We now have the technologies to use the sun’s energy directly, rather than through the photosynthetic pathway. Just in case you missed the point plants sequestering sun light and Co2 occurs every day. But also remember that all living orgasms also respire, breath out Co2. So its not a 100% capture and storage system, nor is capturing the sun’s energy as it requires people and transport etc to build run and maintain.

    So to put the Co2 genie back in the box with Kelp or other biological process, while still releasing the suns energy from its sequester home will never work. It will be just like straightening the deck chairs on the Titanic after it had hit the iceberg. It might make you feel good but your future is committed.

    The only solution to the long term survival of the “Human” race is to go direct to the energy source and its derivatives. Sun, Wind, and Wave are all reliable supplies of energy that can provide demand and base load power. There is also geothermal and Moon power but that’s for another chat. I request you all “See the Light” – sun light as our salvation.

    Oh! By the way perhaps you may like to think on this, my 1979 statement of global warming before it became main stream. “Only mankind cares about the environment”

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