A new, unique web portal is being launched today that reflects the influence of Norwegian aquaculture along the coast - both on the ocean and society as a whole.
The portal is intended to make openly accessible to everyone the facts related to the various aspects of sustainability in Norwegian aquaculture.
– It will now be easier to obtain facts and follow the development of various sustainability themes related to Norwegian aquaculture, says Kine Mari Karlsen, Project Manager and Senior Researcher in Nofima.
Take a look at the datasets available in the portal. Maybe you will be surprised?
It is already possible to obtain raw data and statistics from the portal, but they are currently located on different sites and are somewhat difficult to access. The project was initiated with the aim of making it simpler for people to obtain understandable facts, and of contributing to an increased understanding of how Norwegian aquaculture affects the environment, economy and society.
Researchers from Nofima and Sintef Ocean have developed the portal, in close collaboration with BarentsWatch and Bouvet. The Norwegian Seafood Research Fund (FHF) funded the project that stemmed from a need by actors in the aquaculture industry to have access to sustainability status reports. established.
Public data and research data
The public and research data that are compiled in the portal have been obtained from the Brønnøysund Register Centre, The Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries, The Norwegian Food Safety Authority, Statistics Norway, The Norwegian Veterinary Institute and The Norwegian Scientific Advisory Committee for Atlantic Salmon Management, among others. In accordance with both national and international guidelines on sustainability, the researchers have divided the data into three categories: environment, economy and society.
Some of the environmental themes include data on salmon lice, sale of medicaments and escape. Economic themes include the contribution to GDP, costs and profitability, whilst the category related to society includes such themes as taxes, areal use and employment.
Comprehensive data covering a long period make it possible to show trends within several fields, and to display how different aspects of the Norwegian aquaculture industry evolve over time.
How sustainable is the aquaculture industry?
Based on all these data, there may be expectations to being able to ascertain how sustainable the Norwegian aquaculture industry actually is. However, the project manager will not arrive at any conclusion on this.
“It is by no means as simple as that. The portal gives the industry neither a red nor a green light. It presents the data in a simple way, and it is up to the reader to choose how to use them. Development and trends may say something about the direction in which the industry is going within the different sustainability themes”, says Kine Mari Karlsen.
Karlsen anticipates that the portal will create considerable interest, which was also the case during the project period.
“There has been a demand for such a service from the industry itself, journalists and critics of aquaculture. We hope that users of the web portal will be satisfied with the service, and that they will also follow developments in Norwegian aquaculture via the web portal”, she says.
More data to come
The researchers have selected twenty different themes related to sustainability, but the list is by no means final, Karlsen explains.
“Even though we have incorporated a comprehensive amount of data, there are still more statistics and data sets that we would like to include such as climate accounting, that it was not possible to achieve at this stage. This is the first version, and there will be even more over the next few years. We will start to include climate accounting in the portal as soon as the new data are ready”, says Karlsen.
The project manager is positive to constructive input, and hopes to receive feedback from users of the portal.