Thursday, April 22, 2010


Langdon*, C.

Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station and Dept. Fisheries and Wildlife,
Hatfield Marine Science Center,
Oregon State University,
2030 S. Marine Science Drive,
Newport, Oregon 97365 Projected high rates of global and US population growth coupled with declines in many wild fisheries will put increasing pressure on aquaculture to meet future consumer demand for seafood. The US currently imports about 80% of its seafood, resulting in a large annual trade deficit of about $10 billion and a dependence on other countries to supply affordable, high-quality seafood in the future. Offshore aquaculture has been identified by NOAA and other organizations as a possible means of providing the US with a sustainable domestic source of seafood.

The Pacific Northwest offers some unique opportunities for offshore aquaculture, such as 1) clean, cold seawater that allows production of valuable cold-water species, 2) high wave and wind energy that could provide offshore facilities with sources of power and 3) a strong fishing community that could participate in farming initiatives.

In 2008, a forum was held at the Hatfield Marine Science Center, Oregon State University, Oregon, US, to discuss the potential of offshore aquaculture in the Pacific Northwest. The forum was attended by a wide range of participants, including scientists, administrators, fishing industry representatives, non-profit organizations and the media. Details of participants, the program and findings are given on the forums web site: Error! Hyperlink reference not valid. .

The forum made two overarching recommendations: 1) education and outreach should be undertaken to discuss the challenges and opportunities of offshore aquaculture for local communities and 2) demonstration projects should be established to determine technical, biological, economic and environmental aspects of offshore aquaculture. These recommendations and other findings of the forum will be presented.


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