Demonstration of the Feasibility of Solar Energy in Sustainable Aquaculture to Address High Costs in Conventionally Produced Electricity

Project Overview

Project Type: Farmer/Rancher
Funds awarded in 2009: $10,469.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2010
Region: Western
State: Northern Mariana Islands
Principal Investigator:

Annual Reports


  • Animals: fish


  • Energy: solar energy

    Proposal summary:

    The Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) has one of the highest electrical rates in the nation. The majority of the aquaculture producers in the CNMI produce shrimp and Tilapia using Recirculating Aquaculture Systems (RAS) as a result of limited, expensive land and strict effluent discharge regulations. RAS production requires the use of air and water pumps 24/7 to sustain the high density of fish required to make this type of production system economically viable. At the rate that the local utility company charges, producers are having a difficult time sustaining their operations. As a result, this project was initiated to investigate the use of renewable energy sources, such as solar, as an alternative to conventional power generation to lower production costs and improve profitability.

    Project objectives from proposal:

    *To demonstrate the feasibility of alternative energy systems to other aquaculture producers as a means to reduce energy costs, which comprises 40% of production costs

    * To promote sustainable agriculture practices with planned field and media days and proposed workshops

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.