Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Can Solar Power Save the Oysters?

 WMDT, New partnership puts solar energy at forefront of oyster production

A new partnership could be a game-changer for oyster production with solar energy being the driving force. Solar Oysters and Blue Oyster Environmental have their eyes set on sustainable aquaculture.

Solar Oyster’s recently developed a Solar Oyster Production System (SOPS) prototype which uses solar energy in the oyster growing process. We’re told there are various benefits to this model including the ability to increase the oyster’s food availability. The goal is to get that on an active farm for the upcoming growing season.

Both organizations tell us that this will also be a big benefit for the industry on the shore. “If we can get back to those same rates of harvest from 150 years ago here in Maryland, the number of jobs we’re going to create is going to be incredible,” Blue Oyster Environmental CEO Jordan Shockley said.

“We’ve gotten interest for this from across the country and even internationally. This is an opportunity to really bring a very innovative, game challenging technology to the aquaculture market that’s based on Maryland’s Eastern Shore,” Solar Oyster LLC’s Steven Pattison said.

Another key focus of the collaboration is re-establishing oyster production in the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem.

A remarkably uninformative article, but since the Solar Oysters people once came to me with a question, I know that the idea here is using solar power to rotate oysters racks and run pumps to clean oysters in an aquaculture setting, which will speed growth and improve the quality of the oysters. Is it economically feasible? Can they compete with conventional aquaculture? We'll see, I suppose.

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