The President signed an Executive Order on Promoting American Seafood and Economic Growth on May 7th, which aims to kickstart offshore aquaculture. GORI is partnering with LSU, LUMCON, NOAA, and Innovasea on a research pilot project for multi-use platform-based offshore aquaculture on the North Padre Island platforms.
Section 1. Purpose. America needs a vibrant and competitive seafood industry to create and sustain American jobs, put safe and healthy food on American tables, and contribute to the American economy. Despite America’s bountiful aquatic resources, by weight our Nation imports over 85 percent of the seafood consumed in the United States. At the same time, illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing undermines the sustainability of American and global seafood stocks, negatively affects general ecosystem health, and unfairly competes with the products of law-abiding fishermen and seafood industries around the world. More effective permitting related to offshore aquaculture and additional streamlining of fishery regulations have the potential to revolutionize American seafood production, enhance rural prosperity, and improve the quality of American lives. By removing outdated and unnecessarily burdensome regulations; strengthening efforts to combat illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing; improving the transparency and efficiency of environmental reviews; and renewing our focus on long-term strategic planning to facilitate aquaculture projects, we can protect our aquatic environments; revitalize our Nation’s seafood industry; get more Americans back to work; and put healthy, safe food on our families’ tables.
The ocean, like our farmland and stockyards, is where our food is grown and raised. Food quality, availability, affordability, and security are of utmost importance to our wellbeing and ability to thrive as a nation. Our research efforts will be looking at how our offshore platform infrastructure can enable offshore aquaculture ventures to grow fish and other seafood proteins in a sustainable and efficient way.