Researchers at the University of Hawai’i at Hilo partnered with faculty at Duke and Cornell University to study algae production with bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) technology. They created a model that uses carbon dioxide emissions from burning wood to grow algae, which can be used for fuel or food.
“It provides a path forward as a solution to reverse climate change without compromising other things that are important, namely food,” said Zackary Johnson, Arthur P. Kaupe associate professor of molecular biology in marine science.
Johnson noted that the protein from algae could serve as a substitute for whey, a protein commonly found in milk. He compared algae protein to fish protein, praising its quality.
“In preliminary studies, we tested algae as a source of food for a variety of animals: chicken, pig, salmon, shrimp…they [ate] that as a food source and [did] quite well,” Johnson said.