Developing ecological modelling tools to determine production potential for aquaculture and fisheries in offshore wind farms

Does the local ecosystem in windfarms have the production capacity (food availabilty) to sustain the envisioned aquaculture.

The multi-use of offshore wind farms on the National Continental Flat (NCP) with harvesting natural stocks and or aquaculture is becoming more and more realistic. However, the potential of biomass (food) production in the NCP is not yet well known, and no spatial planning based on ecosystem productivity is currently considered. The tools to support adequate spatial planning, and ecosystem based productivity (a driver for site selection, food harvest potential and ecosystem productivity potential) are not yet available for utilisation.

This information should be available to choose and optimize harvest and locations (in time and space) and also to be able toevaluate amangement measures in order to increase local productivity (e.g. evaluating between habitat, recruitment or food enhancement).

Growth and production models could yield such insights to assess the site dependent potential of ecosystem productivity and production species occurrence (where species can grow, and what production can be achieved). This study describes the current drivers ofproductivity in the North Sea. It makes an inventory on the existing models available to model productivity. Based on to be defined criteria the model best suited for the question will be chosen and elaborated.