This solution produces bioenergy from salt loving plants, fish from aquaculture and a coastal protection system, without freshwater, in a fully integrated energy and agriculture system.
Taking advantage of the synergies and interactions between several subsystems, the Integrated Seawater Energy and Agriculture System (ISEAS) uses non-arable desert land, irrigated with seawater, to produce bioenergy and food. The system integrates fish or shrimp aquaculture with the production of the salt-tolerant crop Salicornia and sea mangroves. Utilizing the oilseed from the Salicornia plant, liquid biofuel for aviation is produced via hydro-processing, with leftover biomass from this process as well as the mangrove production made available for bioenergy.
The benefits of the integrated system stem from the use of co-products from each process to supplement energy or material inputs for the other processes with the end result being food, biofuels and a naturally resilient ecosystem.
Why you should care
The ISEAS has the potential to provide aviation quality biofuels and other types of bioenergy with life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions less than those of conventional fossil fuel-based aviation fuels. The ISEAS offers the additional benefits of using seawater, not freshwater, while making productive use of marginal land.