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A Geospatial approach to finding the Carbon Sequestration potential of Mid Ocean Kelp Farming Platforms.

Authors: Scott Drost*,
Topics: Climatology and Meteorology, Environment, Oceanography
Keywords: ESRI, Portal for ArcGIS, Operational Dashboard, Climate Change, Carbon Sequestration
Session Type: Poster
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

The level of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere continues to increase, warming the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans to levels that could catastrophically affect the environment with flooding and extreme droughts. Solutions are urgently needed to combat this phenomenon. Carbon sequestration, the act of removing carbon from the air has been an area of specific interest in the field of climate science. Macrocystis pyrifera, otherwise known as Giant Kelp is one of the fastest-growing autotrophs on earth. With biomass production as high as 5.2 kg per square meter per year and carbon sequestration ranging between 20-40% of this biomass, Giant Kelp has the potential to lower carbon dioxide levels when grown at a massive scale. Floating Photo-Voltaic Powered Mid-Ocean Kelp Farming platforms could sequester carbon from the Ocean’s surface by depositing clippings from Giant Kelp into the deep oceans, where the carbon could potentially be locked away for thousands of years. Additional advances in technology will be necessary to make these platforms feasible and data will be gathered from theoretical engineering schematics that have similar real-world applications. This study will illustrate optimal geospatial locations for vast arrays of floating platforms considering ecological niches, ocean surface temperatures, ocean depths, weather conditions, and ocean currents and then ultimately derive the carbon capture potential of these systems illustrated within an ESRI Portal for ArcGIS Operational Dashboard. We expect the final analysis to demonstrate a significant carbon sequestration value but not enough to be a sole solution to mitigate climate change.

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