Therefore, we werent surprised to learn that the Gulf Marine Institute for Technology (GMIT) is making progress in their project to transform a giant three-platform oil and gas complex into a huge open ocean fish farm.
GMIT will tell you a lot about why this conversion from oil platform to fish farm is good and very little about the many risks it poses. One particularly egregious untruth we uncovered on their website is as follows: ‘By domesticating cobia and other species, it will be possible to provide systems and fast-growing marine finfish species that could help supply a substantial amount of reasonably priced protein to help supplement the world‚ deteriorating supply of one of its most important protein resources “seafood.”
Unfortunately, what they don’t explain is the fact that cobia and the other carnivorous species they plan to cultivate (including red drum, amberjack and red porgy) require massive amounts of wild fish protein, in the form of fishmeal, in order to survive and grow. This of course means they need to take more fish out of the ocean in order to feed the fish they are farming. On average, producing a pound of farmed carnivorous fish requires 5 pounds of wild fish, a highly unsustainable proposition.
Sadly, this is not the least of it.
And so you may ask, why bother turning oil-rigs into fish farms if it doesn’t seem to provide a viable alternative to wild fish. Well, it sure costs a lot less for oil companies when they don’t have to pull their rigs out of the water doesn’t it?