How seaweed farming could help to offset agriculture’s emissions
Published in Current Biology, the study found by analyzing coastal habitats worldwide, that an expansive area of coastline – 48 million square kilometers – would be suitable for global seaweed production. If we farmed even just a tiny fraction of that area – 273 square kilometers, or 0.001% – the growing seaweed would lock enough carbon to offset the emissions of the entire aquaculture sector.
When the researchers evaluated seaweed’s potential to offset the emissions of global agriculture as a whole, the benefits weren’t quite as striking. The growing constraints of seaweed – certain temperature and nutrient requirements – together with the cost of production, makes it unlikely that we’ll be able to farm enough seaweed globally to counteract the roughly 18% of anthropogenic emissions that agriculture generates.