Damen Shipyards Group of the Netherlands and Maris Projects have agreed cooperation to combat the invasive Sargassum seaweed in the Caribbean region using a new type of Damen vessel.
The seaweed is causing considerable problems in the region. Aside from the strong smell it gives off when decomposing, which has led to beach closures, the seaweed also clogs the engines and nets of fishing vessels.
Damen’s role in the partnership is to develop a dedicated solution based on a specially developed Damen MultiCat vessel for harvesting, pre-processing and transport of Sargassum seaweed. The two partners have identified a local operating partner – CMC – that can harvest the seaweed in Martinique and Guadeloupe. Currently, the partners are discussing a contract that will create the consortium to be known as Blue Caribbean Energy Solutions.
The consortium aims to collect and purify Sargassum, then turn it into biogas via a two-step process using low-temperature anaerobic digestion as the first step.