2023 April 11
The Ocean Wise Kelp Nursery will be a key component in scaling kelp restoration and cultivation in British Columbia
From left to right: Gopi Chande, SVP, Finance & Treasurer, TELUS,; Geoff Pegg, Director, Sustainability & Environment, TELUS; Carlos Drews, Executive Vice President, Conversation, Ocean Wise; Patrick Weiler, Member of Parliament for West Vancouver – Sunshine Coast – Sea to Sky Country
Vancouver, B.C. – Global conservation organization Ocean Wise has officially launched the Ocean Wise Kelp Nursery at the Pacific Science Enterprise Centre in West Vancouver.
The nursery is a key expansion in Ocean Wise’s mission to grow and restore kelp forests via its Seaforestation initiative.
Lee-Ann Ennis, founder of Vital Kelp
In many areas across the BC coast, kelp forests are in decline due to ocean warming and urchin overpopulation. Ocean Wise’s Seaforestation initiative is an ocean-based biodiversity and climate solution based on kelp restoration, protection and cultivation. Planting and restoring kelp can restore critical biodiversity habitat, support coastal and Indigenous food security and livelihoods, and has the potential to sequester significant amounts of carbon to help mitigate the impacts of climate change.
While many kelp restoration projects have been trialed worldwide, there are still significant knowledge gaps in the methodology and technology to bring restoration to scale. The Ocean Wise Kelp Nursery:
Will act as a research and development hub to test novel kelp seep production method, allowing for new and improved techniques for restoration and cultivation.
Will be a source to deploy seed in local and further waters to assess efficacy of restoration efforts.
Will create opportunities for community members, students, and young ocean leaders to engage hands-on with kelp restoration.
Ocean Wise’s Andrew Lang Wong demonstrates Ocean Wise’s new remote operated vehicle at the Pacific Science Enterprise Centre
The establishment of the kelp nursery is a critical component of the Ocean Wise Seaforestation initiative’s broader goal to responsibly expand the protection, restoration, and farming of seaweed to maximize returns to the climate, environment, and people as concluded in Ocean Wise’s report, Seaforestation: Benefits to the climate, the ecosystems, and the people of British Columbia. Ocean Will will engage local First Nations in all stages of kelp restoration and facilitate inputs of traditional Indigenous knowledge into restoration protocols.
The Pacific Science Enterprise Centre is a world-class, innovative research hub that is home to research led by Fisheries and Oceans Canada and other partners. The centre is also home to the Ocean Wise Plastics Lab and is host to a portion of the Ocean Wise Whales initiative’s research. The Ocean Wise Kelp Nursery was made possible in part thanks to generous financial contributions from TELUS and other donors.
Seaforestation is an innovative, ocean-based climate and biodiversity solution based on kelp restoration, protection and cultivation. By planting and restoring kelp, Ocean Wise is able to fight climate change while restoring critical habitat and marine life.
About Ocean Wise
Ocean Wise is a global conservation organization on a mission. We build communities that take meaningful action to protect and restore our ocean. Through research, education, innovation, and collaboration, we are turning the tide on three major ocean challenges: ocean pollution, overfishing and climate change. By creating communities of concern that include industries, governments, and everyday citizens, we create a future where our ocean and the people who depend on it can thrive. Ocean Wise is headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia. With staff in Canada, Mexico, and Chile, our work reaches over 30 countries around the globe.