Greenland Shark Fat Biofuel? Not Such a Good Idea

greenland shark photo

The Greenland Shark is the largest member of the dogfish family, growing to over 20' in length. Photo: Discovery Shark Guide

The title says it all: Physorg details proposed plans in Uummannaq, Greenland to use fat from Greenland Sharks, many of which are accidentally caught and disposed of by fishermen in the region, to create biogas. Enough of the seven meter-long sharks are caught to supply 13% of the town's energy needs, and an EU-financed project will test the procedure at a wastewater treatment plant next year:The plan is to take shark meat -- by some accounts the sharks sometimes fill entire trawlers and amount to half of the waste disposed of by trawlers -- mix it with wastewater and macro-algae to create a 'fish mince' which will them be processed into biogas, presumably through anaerobic digestion though the original article does not elaborate.

uummannaq photo

Uummannaq photo: Wikipedia
Other Sustainable Energy Projects Should be Undertaken
According to local fishermen the sharks are abundant and a nuisance. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature and the WWF disagree.

A WWF spokesperson describes the project as being "not a good idea, not at all" on the grounds that we really know very little about the Greenland Shark, which contrary to anecdotal accounts does not pose big problems to the Greenland fishing industry and whose population is simply not known. Other sustainable energy projects should be undertaken instead.

More: Greenland shark may become new source of biofuel
New Study Finds Half a Million Sharks are Finned Every Year in Ecuador
Re-Think the Shark! Clever Ad by Save Our Seas Foundation
German Town Becomes First With Dedicated Biogas Network
Human Poop and Urine Provide Cheap Source of Biogas in Uganda

Related Content on