The tropical oceans are the world’s largest collector and storage system of solar energy. This heat can be utilized to generate mechanical energy and fresh water by using the cold deep water, only about 1000 m below this vast heat reservoir as the heat sink. After its utilization in the condenser of the power generating or desalination plant, the deep water can be utilized in a mariculture system to produce plant and animal protein. In a small shore-based pilot plant on the north shore of St. Croix, U. S. Virgin Islands, the technical feasibility of Artificial Upwelling mariculture has been demonstrated. Its economic potential is now under evaluation. The plant protein yield per unit surface area achieved in St. Croix is 8.1 tons/hectare/year. At current market prices, the gross sales value of the meat which can be obtained from a given volume of deep sea water pumped to the surface is considerably greater than that of the energy which can be generated from the same volume of deep water, according to OTEC power systems presently under consideration in the United States. The combined utilization of the ΔT and the nutrient content of deep water in the tropical ocean could be economical and would contribute to solving current shortages of food and energy.

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