AMICAL

Aquaculture of MIcroalgae in New CALedonia

Certain ultramarine sea areas, and notably those in New-Caledonia, host an exceptional biodiversity, and have vast resources with potential for added value in ecological and environmentally sustainable activities, and notably activities that could benefit local populations. Algae production and exploitation is one of the most promising areas currently under development.

In New Caledonia, this sector of the economy offers huge scope and is of real interest in particular to the animal nutrition market, high added value compounds under high environmental quality, and energy (third-generation algae biofuels). This biodiversity represents an invaluable heritage for sustainable exploitation in the framework of an integrated management plan.

The AMICAL project, at the initiative of both New Caledonia Ifremer delegation and PBA laboratory, aims to establish a industrial microalgae culture in the territory.

PBA laboratory will assume scientific coordination whilst governance will be assumed by ADECAL/technopole who support the project.

It integrates both applied research led by the future Laboratory Study (Etude) of MicroAlgae (LEMA) located in Southern province, and the development and transfer that will be handled by the Technological Laboratory for MicroAlgae (LTMA) located at Koné, in North province.

LEMA will select the indigenous algae species. These will be characterized in terms of taxonomy, biochemistry, and ecophysiology by the PBA laboratory. LEMA will then validate, on a small scale, the culture of microalgae in photobioreactor before transferring them to the LTMA.

The LTMA will lead research into the technical and economic feasibility of the culture and transformation of the micro-algae species selected by the LEMA in pilot installations. Finally, the LTMA will transfer the species of algae selected to industrial programs in New Caledonia, along with the know-how obtained about their cultivation through training.