Researchers at Texas A&M Corpus Christi have found a way to speed up the growth of oyster reefs in the Gulf of Mexico. Oyster reefs are very important to certain industries as well as the health of local ocean environments. Despite their importance, the number of oyster reefs in the Gulf has declined by over 90% in the last 130 years, a dangerous trend that cannot be allowed to continue. Given enough time, the reefs could eventually replenish themselves, but using electrically charged seawater could rapidly increase the speed at which they replenish and in turn create more healthy ocean environments in the Gulf.
The massive decline in oyster reef over the last hundred years or so isn’t just affecting seafood lovers, but also the entire ecological systems that depend on these important ocean habitats. And while given time, these reefs could eventually replenish themselves, the work of some researchers at Texas A&M Corpus Christi could lead to more rapid regrowth and healthier marine ecosystems.