Cultivating Marine Biomass

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Cultivating Marine Biomass
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Source: UC Santa Barbara

One of the most productive organisms on Earth, giant kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) depends on nutrients from the surrounding water column to maintain its photosynthetic apparatus and maximize growth rates, which can reach a foot and a half a day.

Such prolific growth makes giant kelp an excellent candidate to replace corn as a biofuel. While this species naturally grows close to shore, it easily could be farmed in deeper waters. This is the focus of a new project called Macroalgae Research Inspiring Novel Energy Resources (MARINER), which seeks to develop offshore kelp farms to produce kelp biomass as a novel energy source.

A team of UC Santa Barbara scientists will receive $2.1 million over three years from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy to develop and test technologies that monitor large-scale giant kelp farms. Led by David Siegel, a professor in UCSB’s Department of Geography and the campus’s Earth Research Institute, the team will combine and refine existing technology to enable farm managers to carefully monitor kelp beds and maximize yields.

To view the complete story, go to http://www.news.ucsb.edu/2017/018267/cultivating-marine-biomass

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laughing Sep 20, 2017 06:33 PM
Cultivating Marine Biomass

I say full steam ahead ! Lots of serious potential around the world for this technology . Anyone know how the Giant Kelp Regrow in the Goleta Bay is doing. Wonder if this is the same Scientist ?

a-1511570101 Sep 20, 2017 07:54 AM
Cultivating Marine Biomass

Yeti: Do you regularly ride the MTD buses? Ridership of MTD buses is down in SB. I ride the MTD all of the time, and I can tell you from first-hand experience that the riders are not the same folks who attend Earth Day in Alameda Park, or flittering around at the Solstice Parade and after party. Corn, Kelp, Oil.....you people need to get out of your cars and take public transportation like I do. I own a car, but blaming Big Oil for all of my problems? Errr....No.

jqb Sep 23, 2017 03:50 PM
Cultivating Marine Biomass

That's the most ridiculous assertion of "first hand experience" imaginable. You didn't recognize anyone at Earth Day from your bus rides, so ... blah blah blah. Many people walked or pedaled; I did. And you make completely baseless assertions about Yetti, don't address hsr points because you don't understand them, and then throw in something about Big Oil which s/he didn't mention ... apparently you can't grasp the difference between corn and oil.

yetti Sep 20, 2017 08:06 AM
Cultivating Marine Biomass

HUH? Being angry at everyone else is not really a solution to the world's problems. Just think about growing a fuel source that does not require drinking water for hydration nor added fertilizer for energy and it grows over a foot per day. The reality of taking corn out of the food chain, one of the world's most utilized food crops, driving prices up and wasting billions of gallons of drinking water on fueling cars, is literally insane. When you look at whom is making all of the money on this, it quickly becomes obvious why it is still happening.

yetti Sep 19, 2017 06:13 PM
Cultivating Marine Biomass

BRILLIANT!! It is insane to grow a food crop to help fuel cars, at a much higher price including all of the water, fertilizer and diesel that is wasted .. It also drives up the price of the crop to the consumer which seriously harms people in third world countries that are paying much more for tortillas..etc. Kelp would be an amazing replacement. No added fertilizer or drinking water needed ! Hooray. If only we can get the agriculture and political machine to go along with it. Unfortunately, like most everything, there is so much money against it via the profiting from growing and processing corn. I wish you well.

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