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Stevens researchers provide oversight for three-year mariculture program in Egypt and Israel

HOBOKEN, N.J. -- Researchers in the Center for Maritime Systems (CMS) at Stevens Institute of Technology have been awarded a grant from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) that is focused on enhancing mutual cooperation between scientists from Egypt and Israel through scientific collaboration.

The collaboration is based on a project to evaluate a land-based integrated mariculture system for a variety of marine products. The main idea of the integrated system is to recycle the excretions of fish stocks into feed for other valuable products such as oysters and clams. In this integrated system, species are cultured separately, permitting intensification and optimization of production as well as better control of nutrient flow and uptake. Two similar pilot systems will be set up and evaluated. One, in Alexandria, Egypt, on the Mediterranean coast, will be managed by researchers from the Egyptian National Institute of Oceanography and Fisheries. The other system, in Eilat, Israel on the Red Sea, will be led by researchers from the Israeli National Center for Mariculture.

The late Dr. Robert Abel, a longtime CMS research staff member, envisioned this collaborative effort and worked tirelessly to make it happen. He brought the participants together and secured the funding. It is through him that Stevens maintains the responsibility for the overall coordination of the project. Abel, the former Director of International Programs at CMS and a long time promoter of peace in the Middle East, managed 16 cooperative projects in the region during the past 25 years. He received two Distinguished Service Awards from the US and had been honored in Egypt, Japan, Saudi Arabia and Indonesia for his work. Upon Abels death in October 2007, project responsibility was taken over by Dr. Alan Blumberg, Stevens Professor of Ocean Engineering and Director of the Stevens Center for Maritime Systems.

Contact: Patrick A. Berzinski
Stevens Institute of Technology

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