SEOUL, Feb. 18 (Korea Bizwire) — The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said Wednesday that it will start distributing high-performance biodegradable fishing nets that can be used to catch blue crab and yellow corvina from next month as part of an initiative to protect marine wildlife.
The biodegradable fishing nets naturally decompose into water and carbon dioxide by microorganisms in the sea water over time.
Existing fishing nets made of textiles such as nylon sink under the sea without decomposing, thereby causing the so-called ‘ghost fishing’ phenomenon that refers to the continued trapping and killing of marine life by a discarded fishing net.
In collaboration with the National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, the ministry has carried out research into the development of new fishing nets using a raw material called PBEAS (Polybutylenesuccinate-co-butyleneadipate-co-ethylenesuccinate-co-ethyleneadipate) as part of a project that wrapped up last year.
The newly-developed biodegradable fishing nets feature a 10 percent improvement in strength and 20 percent improvement in flexibility compared to existing nylon nets.
The ministry plans to earmark 5.2 billion won (US$4.7 million) this year to distribute the biodegradable fishing nets to 528 fishing boats.
The lifespan of the biodegradable fishing nets, however, is about one year, shorter than that of nylon fishing nets that can typically be used for about two years.
M. H. Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)