Algaculture - Sustainable Production

The following is excerpted from the research and writings of Dr. Mark Edwards, one of the world’s foremost authorities on algae.

Sustainable food may be produced with nature’s first plant culture on Earth; algae. This organism, the size of a nanoparticle, transforms solar energy into high energy green biomass using photosynthesis. This green solar process generates a flexible plant biomass that may provide energy for:

  • People – protein in food
  • Animals – protein in fodder
  • Animals – protein in fodder
  • Fowl – protein for birds
  • Fish – protein in fish feed
  • Plants – nitrogen fertilizer
  • Fire – high energy algal oil for cooking and heating
  • Cars – high energy algal oil for transportation
  • Trucks and tractors – high energy green diesel
  • Planes – high energy jet fuel

Algaculture or green solar produces food, fuel, coproducts and pollution solutions sustainably without sacrificing cropland, fresh water or fossil fuels and provides a positive ecological footprint. Algaculture applies a seemingly novel but actually nature’s ancient strategy for growing food; the use of water-based plants with special characteristics. Traditional agriculture is non-sustainable due to its heavy reliance on non-sustainable natural resources. The substantial costs of agricultural inputs make food unaffordable for many, especially those already suffering from malnutrition. It also depends on relatively stable weather and requires considerable labor or heavy equipment.

Annual protein production per acre for soybean is 356 pounds, rice 265 pounds and corn 211 pounds. Annual protein production per acre of algae is estimated to be about 30,000 pounds per acre. In addition, algae provide a strong set of vitamins and minerals not found in land plants.