Reduction of Eutrophication and Oxygen Supply Function
- In growth and proliferation of seaweed, nitrogen and phosphorous are essential elements. Soluble phosphorous and nitrogen are extremely useful in seaweeds and it was revealed that eutrophic sea water has the ability to promote growth of seaweed.
- Hence, seaweed absorbs organic materials in water and purifies the environment.
- Recently, as a measure of preventing eutrophication of the coast and resolving the formation of hypoxic water at the same time, cultivation of seaweed is emerging.
Emerging as an absorbebt of carbon dioxide, the major cause of global warming,
- Seaweed was researched to have extremely high ability of absorbing carbon dioxide, which is one of the major causes of global warming among many bio-masses.
- After comparing the carbon dioxide absorbing effect of seaweed with that of tropical forest, gulfweed and kelp have approximately twice higher absorbing effect of carbon dioxide. Above all, kelp is known to have the highest primary productivity among photosynthesizing organisms on earth.
Providing spawning and breeding grounds for marine resources
- Habitat of seaweed is an important place for marine resources to spawn or their fries to grow. Once grown, seaweeds are used for spawning grounds or hiding shelters for fries.
- Plankton generated from photosynthesis become good food, hence becoming the basis for food chain for marine resources.
High potential of consistent utilization as resource
- Seaweed resources have lower risk of causing food issues like land plants or depleting the resources like forest resources.
- In particular, the importance of seaweeds is emerging internationally as an alternative resource to actively deal with food crisis and carbon reduction issue.
Utilization of seaweed
- Seaweed is classified into algae, red algae and brown algae. With the vast variety, they have diverse utilization areas.
- Green algae such as sea staghorn and green laver are used as food, feed or fertilizer.
- Red algae such as laver and stone laver are used as food, while agar and acanthopeltis are used to produce agar. And glue plant is a thickening agent that is widely used in food industry as food cooking, stabilizer or emulsifier.
- Many of brown algae are macroalgae. Sea mustard and kelp are used as food while sea oak and sea trumpet are used as ingredients for producing alginate, iodine and calcium.
- Algae are used for food in food ingredients, food materials and beverages as well as diverse industries including feed, cosmetics, sea water purification, industrial production, drugs and paper manufacturing.
|Utilization Area||Examples of seaweeds|
|Recovery of natural ecosystem, recovery of marine resources (spawning ground, marine farm)||All seaweeds|
|Food, food additives, beverages, alcoholic drinks, etc.||Laver, kelp, sea mustard, etc.|
|Feed||Sea mustard, kelp, fusiformes, etc.|
|Sea water bathing therapy||Brown algae, red algae|
|Cosmetics||Laver, brown algae|
|Chemical industry, food processing, agar industry, pigment industry, medicine, paper and fiber industry (paper, emulsion stabilizer, protector, molding, gelant, plasticizer, viscosity agent, dispersant, artificial skin, obesity treatment, heavy metals discharging, etc.)||Sea string, brown algae, red algae, green algae, etc.|
|Bioenergy (Biodiesel, bioethanol, etc.)||Brown algae, green algae, etc.|
|High-tech (superconductivity ceramic fiber)||Brown algae|
|Biosensor (cell sorting, histochemistry, immunology research, etc.)||Laver, etc.|
|Carbon dioxide reduction||Sea mustard, kelp, etc.|
|Bioactive substance (functional)||Kelp, sea mustard, laver, etc.|
Source: Jong-am Shin, Announcement Material for Development Measure of Seaweed Farming Industry, Chonnam National University, 28 November 2008