Aquaculture for all

Salmon waste project wins $50,000 award

CALIFORNIA - The Tech Museum of Innovation's annual tech awards were presented earlier this week. The honours aim to recognise innovators who use technology to benefit humanity and among this year's winning projects was a method to reduce the pollution caused by salmon farming.

Fundacion Terram, based in Chile, landed $50,000 by winning the Environment category. It has developed a way to eliminate the significant waste created by salmon farming, which is done in open-water pens.

"A single farm with 200,000 salmon can produce as much waste as a city with 62,000 people," said Joey Brookhart, Senior Project Manager with Seafood Choices Alliance, a global association for the issue of ocean-friendly seafood.

Fundacion Terram's salmon project has many benefits. It trained indigenous people to plant kelp under the fish pens. The kelp absorbs phosphorous and nitrogen so reducing the polluting effect of the waste. The locals can then harvest the kelp to feed, abalone another profitable aquaculture enterprise at a neighboring operation which was previously supplied by harvesting natural kelp forests.

TERRAM was founded to preserve natural resources and help CHile achieve a more sustainable economy. The organisation is involved in specific areas of mining, fishery and forestry.

The Tech Museum says being recognised by this awards scheme can help business prospects. The five category winners and 25 laureates are now in a good position to attract venture capitalists, government interest and other potential benefactors.

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