Northwest Fisheries Science Center

Life-cycle assessment for marine aquaculture

Because of its impact on climate change, the global warming potential (GWP) may be one of the most critical impacts of aquaculture. Carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide all contribute to GWP. Life cycle assessment (LCA) can be used to estimate GWP of different types of aquaculture production systems in a comprehensive and consistent manner. Comparisons of near shore net pens, offshore net pens, flow-through systems, and reuse systems are needed to direct aquaculture policy in the United States.