Under development and supported by:
At present, the global food production is not sustainable. Although enough food is produced to meet the nutritional demands of the 7.8 billion people alive today, it is estimated that one quarter of the world’s population is malnourished, with two billion people consuming diets that are deficient in micronutrients and 815 million people unable to secure enough calories to meet their minimum daily energy requirements. Today’s nutritional gap results primarily from the inequitable distribution of food. However, unequal access to food is just one aspect of the food sustainability problem that the world will face as we approach midcentury. 
By 2050, the world’s population is projected to approach 10 billion people. Today’s global food production system, which is heavily reliant on industrialized agriculture and fisheries, currently accounts for a quarter of all greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Agriculture currently monopolizes over 50% of the world’s arable land, while over 90% of the world’s fish stocks are either fully or over exploited. To secure an adequate supply of food for humanity during the second half of the 21stcentury, we must sustainably intensify the output of our food production system while simultaneously reducing its detrimental impacts on the global environment and its living resources. 


The primary goal of this task force is to explore the potential of marine aquaculture for sustainably intensifying global food production. All forms of marine aquaculture will be considered, from micro- and macroalgae to fin- and shellfish. Sustainability issues to be quantified relative to the current global food production system will include reductions in GHG emissions, energy use, arable land footprint, eutrophication, and biodiversity loss. Secondary objectives of the task force will be to consider the role of marine aquaculture in the coastal circular bioeconomy, with a special focus on the recycling of materials in algae-based wastewater treatment and the co-production of bioenergy and biomaterials. Bioenergy uses include microalgae-based liquid fuels for the transportation sector and macroalgae-based liquid and solid fuels for the transportation and power sectors, respectively. Biomaterial uses include microalgae-based petroleum product substitutes, such as plastics, foams, and carbon fiber. 

CO-CHAIRS of Development Team


Chuck Greene (Cornell)


Halley Froelich



Rod Fujita



Celina Scott-Buechler (Cornell)


David Babson (ARPA-E)


Steve Mayfield (Scripps/UCSD)