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Perspective: 3D Ocean Farming

By WorldLink Staff | December 18, 2016 | Leave a Comment

Bren harvesting kelp

Bren Smith, executive director of GreenWave, shares his vision for a day when there are thousands of ocean farms contributing food, fertilizers, and energy while lifting struggling coastal communities out of poverty.
What is restorative, 3D ocean farming?

Bren Smith: 3D ocean farming is a simple, replicable type of ocean farming which uses the entire water column to grow restorative species. It has a small footprint, because we grow vertically, and has a low aesthetic impact, too. One of the key elements that sets us apart from traditional aquaculture is that we’re protecting rather than privatizing the oceans—anyone can boat, swim, and fish on our farms. Imagine them as underwater gardens with hurricane-proof anchors on the edges, connected by floating horizontal ropes from which kelp and other seaweeds grow vertically next to scallops in lantern nets and mussels in their socks. Below are oysters in cages and clams buried in the sea floor. These farms are replicable in that they’re very simple and cheap to build since we don’t have to fight gravity underwater, which means that anyone with 20 acres and a boat can have their own farm. We’ve open sourced our model and now have requests to start our farms in every coastal US state and 20 countries.

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