Marine agronomy is not a new idea but it is an idea that may now be feasible and whose time has come. By farming seaweeds (macroalgae) at sea, as we now farm food crops on land, food for future generations would be assured, while the seaweed farms that produce it would serve, like our forests, as ‘lungs’; absorbing CO2 and producing oxygen, and using nutrients that cause ‘dead zones’ in many coastal waters. The crops produced could help to fulfill food needs for future population growth, as well as produce animal feeds, biofuels, and other useful products.
It may now be feasible because of all that has been achieved in aquaculture during the last 50 years where, by farming mostly fish and shellfish, man has begun to learn how to farm the sea. Its time has come because now more than at any stage in our history we are aware of the burden that humans impose on the Earth and our vulnerability as the burden increases.
In short, while many see the oceans as over-exploited and in trouble due to unsustainable human consumption, we see them as a solution where a parallel agronomy could provide for our future needs and balance our terrestrial excesses.
This Marine Agronomy website is a resource and a forum for discussion for those who share this vision or who want to learn more about it. With others engaged in similar endeavors throughout the world we hope it will lead to national and international policies that will allow the idea to be fully explored.