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ECOAQUA is an innovative multidisciplinary aquaculture project led by NUI Galway and Athlone Institute of Technology is set to improve production efficiencies and management of farmed fish at several inland freshwater sites. The project has received €348,781 in funding under the European Maritime Fisheries Fund (EMFF), administered by Bord Iascaigh Mhara, through the Knowledge Gateway Scheme, on behalf of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

The output of this project will include new information, new methods, and increased awareness. It has built on capacity for, and developed new partnerships focused on, research and innovation in environment and health.

Image (L-R): One of the new aeration technologies being trialed. One of the pill ponds at one of the EcoAqua partner sites. Salmon fry at another of the EcoAqua partner sites.

The project aims to test and optimise innovative technologies and processes developed through the linked MOREFISH* project. Led by Dr Eoghan Clifford from NUI Galway and Professor Neil Rowan from Athlone Institute of Technology, with support from Bord Iascaigh Mhara’s technical aquaculture team, ECOAQUA will address critically important needs identified by industry and aquaculture stakeholders including:

  • Analysing the environmental and energy performance of three freshwater aquaculture sites by extensive sampling and remote online monitoring of water parameters.
  • Facilitating the re-use of the treated water, thereby reducing both the volumes of extracted and discharged waters.
  • Enabling the industry to meet stringent environmental regulation while increasing production in a sustainable and cost-effective manner.
  • Piloting technological innovations with industry to ensure the research is easily and rapidly transferrable to the aquaculture sector.
  • Ensuring technological innovations and research results can be leveraged to enable the sustainable growth of this high-potential sector.
  • Enable the industry to leverage the scientific outputs from the project to communicate with government, policymakers and regulators and the public.

For further information about the project contact Mr Alan Kennedy, Project Manager, ECOAQUA at