The Scottish finfish aquaculture sector is one of Scotland’s flagship marine industries, worth over £2bn to the economy. It is founded upon sustainable practices and principles, central to which is protection of the marine environment. Fish farming results in the release of organically-enriched faecal material to the environment, and this is a chief concern. The national regulator (Scottish Environment Protection Agency; SEPA) uses a model (NEWDEPOMOD) to understand and regulate these environmental impacts. Over the last 5 years we’ve been involved with colleagues at the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS, Oban), supporting them through the collection of field data to develop an improved version of the NEWDEPOMOD regulatory model for the Scottish government. We used a novel marine instrument called a ‘benthic flume’ to specifically improve the waste resuspension module within NEWDEPOMOD. Partrac collected in situ measurements of the critical entrainment stress and bed erosion rates at 11 active Scottish fish farm locations, and sampled the seabed for physical and chemical properties. An associated element collected data on bed roughness and flow properties. The results of this work (Adams et al., ‘Parameterising resuspension in aquaculture waste deposition modelling’) have recently been accepted for publication by a leading international journal (Aquaculture Environment Interactions).
To find the paper click here: https://doi.org/10.3354/aei00372
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