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Environmental impact of kelp (Saccharina latissima) aquaculture


Visch, W and Kononets, M and Hall, POJ and Nylund, GM and Pavia, H, Environmental impact of kelp (Saccharina latissima) aquaculture, Marine Pollution Bulletin, 155 Article 110962. ISSN 0025-326X (2020) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

2020 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) licence (

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.marpolbul.2020.110962


The aim of the study was to assess the effect of seaweed cultivation on the coastal environment. We analysed a multitude of environmental parameters using an asymmetrical before after control impact (BACI) design, comparing the seaweed farm (impact) with multiple unaffected locations (controls). The seaweed farm had a significant positive effect on benthic infauna (p < 0.05) and was found to attract 17 mobile faunal and 7 other seaweed species, indicating that the farmed crop may provide habitat to mobile faunal species. A light attenuation of approximately 40% at 5 m depth was noted at the peak of the seaweed biomass just before harvest. No changes were observed in benthic oxygen flux, dissolved nutrient concentrations, and benthic mobile fauna between farm and control sites. These results show that seaweed aquaculture has limited environmental effects, especially compared to other forms of aquaculture such as fish and bivalve farming.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:aquaculture, benthic oxygen uptake, environmental impact, kelp, seaweed, Saccharina latissima
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Fisheries sciences
Research Field:Aquaculture
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Fisheries - aquaculture
Objective Field:Fisheries - aquaculture not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Visch, W (Dr Wouter Visch)
ID Code:151871
Year Published:2020
Web of Science® Times Cited:20
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2022-08-05
Last Modified:2022-09-29

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