Bio-mimic Islands Save Aquaculture

Sustainability Problem:

  • Nitrogen runoff from agricultural use, as well as other pollutants, is flooding major rivers and large bodies of water.
  • Pollution creates hypoxic conditions, which fosters algae blooms and further destroys the aquaculture.
  • This deadly combination impacts drinking water, recreational use of the shoreline, kills marine life and creates human health hazards.
  • South Florida has been in the news for toxic algae blooms that are causing health and environmental damage to coastal areas.

FAQs on Manmade Floating Islands:

  • Manmade floating islands are built using a recycled polymer mesh to support aquatic-friendly plant life. The roots are submerged in water to help filter pollution, cleanse toxins, and absorb the excess nitrogen before it can create algae blooms.
  • Local plants are selected to ensure viability and self-sustenance.
  • Floating islands are anchored in bodies of water, large rivers, and offshore to clean waterways and recreate wetland areas.
  • Mimicking mangrove forests, which are quickly disappearing due to habitat loss, rising water, and warming oceans, the islands create several solutions:
    • Micro-environments that support plant life used to clean the air and water through natural processes;
    • Above the waterline: a habitat for migrating birds, turtles, reptiles, and other species;
    • Below the waterline: a marine habitat supporting fish and related marine species.

Stakeholders:

  • Coastal and lakeside communities
  • Manufacturers of manmade islands
  • Agriculture
  • Marine life and aquaculture
  • Mammals who breathe air

Deployment:

  • The implementation of manmade floating islands is a global multi-million dollar industry. However, wider-scale use is required to have a more pronounced effect.
  • Cost and custom-build time are determined by size and complexity.
  • Islands can take only a few weeks to months to mature, and are self-sustaining.
  • Continued adoption of manmade islands to reduce water pollution, improve air quality, and create new habitats for birds and marine life.

Resources:

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