Abu Dhabi hires BMT to explore potential of three aquaculture sites in Arabian Gulf
Abu Dhabi is exploring the potential of expanding its aquaculture industry, and has hired United Kingdom-based consultancy BMT to study the potential impacts of sea cage operations at three chosen sites in the Arabian Gulf.
The Environment Agency of Abu Dhabi (EAD) has selected three new aquaculture sites off the coast of Dalma Island in the Arabian Gulf for potential expansion. BMT has undertaken an study of the environmental carrying capacity of the sites, as well as the development of an environmental management framework.
“Proposed aquaculture developments such as these, however important to food security, must be undertaken using the best possible tools for predicting both the instantaneous and cumulative effects of aquaculture, to provide the EAD with confidence that the impacts are negligible, or if not small and entirely manageable,” BMT Marine Scientist Glenn Shiell said.
According to Shiell, BMT will determine how many tons of sea cage fish stock can be sustainably cultivated at the sites and how long it will take for the environment to recover once the fish farms are fallowed. The group will also provide training to EAD staff to “enable knowledge transfer and capacity-building for the EAD team.”
“This is a fantastic achievement for the team and reinforces our market presence in the Middle East where we have been working for the last 10 years,” Shiell said.