Cash For Kelp: Long Island Groups Create Seaweed Farm Incentive Program To Reduce Nitrogen

May 31, 2021

Environment groups and scientists on Long Island have announced an incentive program that will pay oyster farmers to grow kelp.

New research from Stony Brook University reveals 10,000 pounds of kelp removed 36 tons of nitrogen from Long Island surface waters.

New York State Assemblyman Fred Thiele supports a bill to expand the program and allow more farmers to grow kelp.

“Nitrogen is public enemy number one when it comes to water quality. And there’s no one single, silver bullet,” Thiele said.

Thiele said cleaning the water with kelp, updated septic systems and less fertilizer use can all help improve water quality.

Scientists say the nitrogen credit program is the first of its kind in New York.