Developing the Use of Wool Rope within Aquaculture—A Systematic Review

Drury, Katherine and Crotty, Felicity (2022) Developing the Use of Wool Rope within Aquaculture—A Systematic Review. Sustainability, 14 (9011). ISSN 2071-1050

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To date, wool is an underutilised sustainable resource that has the potential to reduce the use of plastic within the environment. Wool can be manufactured as rope, but is this a viable innovation? To gain a comprehensive understanding of the economic viability of utilising wool rope in seaweed aquaculture, a systematic literature review was undertaken. The review focuses on wool, rope, natural and man-made fibres and seaweed farming, and used bibliometric and content analysis of peer-reviewed papers, with no timeframe requirements. It is important to explore alternative materials to reduce marine rope pollution; ghost gear, microplastics from abrasion and plasticrusts are now believed to be significant ecological problems. To date, the production of wool rope is limited, and its strength and durability within the fishing industry remain untested. It is important to understand whether wool rope is a useful alternative: does it have the same tensile strength, and can it be used within the industry without the risk of damage to the environment? There is currently a lack of research on natural rope fibres, resulting in limited access to commercial rope alternatives being used within the industry. This systematic review shows that there has been a large gap in wool research, with limited publications in recent years; however, the drive to increase sustainability (particularly within the marine environment) has increased. This is the first paper that combines both topics within one research study. Further research is needed to identify whether wool rope will provide a feasible alternative to polypropylene in terms of strength and durability, and how wool rope will perform, the length of time it can provide optimum service and within which seaweed farming practice it can offer a practical alternative to polypropylene.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This article belongs to the Special Issue Oceans Sustainability: Perspectives to Manage Seas Activities and Coastal Areas
Keywords: wool, seaweed, rope, polypropylene, natural, man-made, fibre, microplastics, degradation, sustainable
Divisions: Agriculture, Food and Environment
Depositing User: Doctor Felicity Crotty
Date Deposited: 26 Jul 2022 12:49
Last Modified: 26 Jul 2022 12:49

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