Credit: NIWA 2018

Posted on 20 September 2017

Eureka! Is ocean farming the future?

Jonathan Chan, from Auckland Grammar School, has won the Eureka Award Gold Scholarship sponsored by NIWA for the most innovative and creative science, technology and/or engineering solution that addresses issues at the core of the Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge.

Jonathan’s presentation, The Future of Farming: Restorative Ocean Farming, discussed a vertical ocean farming system for kelp and shellfish, which could efficiently produce food, fertilizer, animal feed, and biofuel without the need for fertilizers.

Additionally, these species are restorative crops – ie they benefit the environment as well as having an economic value. Each species addresses an environmental issue, such as fixing excess nitrogen or soaking up carbon dioxide.

Jonathan said: “I chose my topic because when I read about it in Popular Science in January, I felt that it really resonated with New Zealand's image of environmental sanctity. I think that the discharge of chemicals into our oceans, either through wastewater or via dirty rivers, is something that should be addressed.”

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