AEB Mariculture Initiative
Since 2018 the NRD has been spearheading an initiative to explore the potential for a mariculture industry in the region. The AEB was awarded funds from NFWF to collect baseline data and permit a seaweed mariculture site. The permit process took over a year, but the lease and operating permit was finally approved by Alaska DNR in July 2021. Due to the pandemic, field work was limited, but the AEB contracted a day charter to collect baseline data (genetics, chemical composition, spore viability, herbarium) and is expected to do another full week of field work in Fall 2021. To continue this work, the AEB has partnered with Alaska Sea Grant and received funding to build and operate the permitted farm in Zachary Bay, near Sand Point. This work is expected to occur in 2021 – 2022.