PILOT 6: Belwind
The Belgian Pilot combines mussel, oyster and seaweed cultivation alongside nature restoration efforts within an offshore wind farm. The Pilot consists of, next to different nearshore testing sites, an offshore pilot site situated within the wind farm of Belwind, operated by Parkwind.
Pilot's key points:
– Similar to the Dutch and German pilots, the hostile physical conditions within the Belgian part of the North Sea are challenging for aquaculture operations and maintaining structural integrity.
– Restorative aquaculture of flat oysters (Ostrea edulis) and development of nature-inclusive scouring protection materials will further enhance biodiversity and the ecosystem services provided by multi-use aquaculture setups.
– The monitoring of shellfish diseases will make use of eDNA techniques.
– The pilot will demonstrate Synergistic Cultivation of native mussels, oysters and seaweed located in an offshore wind farm.
– Innovative systems such as the development of an innovative submersible seaweed long line system will minimize the risk of material and biomass loss due to heavy storm events.