Turn offshore platforms into fish farms, urges Malaysian academic


By Rod Sweet on Mar 5, 2014

Oil and gas platforms in Malaysia could be used for deep-sea fish farming, giving companies an alternative to decommissioning, says a Malaysian academic.

By Ayshe Ismail

Dr. Sharul Sham Dol, head of mechanical engineering at Curtin Sarawak’s School of Engineering and Science, said his team is working on a project to “breathe new life” into disused platforms by turning them into mariculture facilities for deep-sea fish farming.

Most offshore oil and gas platforms in Malaysia are built to last for approximately 25 to 30 years and decommissioning activity is expected to rise because 600 of the 900 now there are over 20 years old.

Writing in the Borneo Post, he said oil companies are keen to find alternative options for platforms as the cost for decommissioning a medium-sized structure is approximately $3m.

The idea is that the platform would be used as an operational hub for fish-farming facilities and crew. The structure itself would be used as an anchor for mooring cages and nets, and as a hatchery.

Dr. Dol said he hopes to collaborate with oil and gas companies, and aquaculture and mariculture businesses, to develop the idea.
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