Sea Farm Ijmond using seaweed to purify polluted water in a Netherlands harbour

Netherlands-based non-profit Sea Farm IJmond has developed a way to purify polluted water, boost diversity and enrich the sea with oxygen in the harbour of IJmuiden by harvesting seaweed.

The harbour of IJmuiden, which is home to heavy industry on one side and the beach on the other, is heavily polluted. With pollution a visible sign floating on the water on a regular basis, Sea Farm IJmond founders Nikki Spil and Sjoerd Laarhoven were inspired to find a solution to tackle the problem. The solution came to them in the form of seaweed and so Sea Farm Ijmond came into being.

Algaes and seaweeds can be put to use as biological waterfilters of polluted ocean waters and give a positive effect on the biodiversity of marine ecosystems.

Sea Farm IJmond have specificallly chosen to grow seaweed not in the most optimal location, but to do it in a place where the waters are most in need of healing.

Nikki Spil told BrightVibes: “It’s our dream to build purifying farms in all the polluted waters of the Netherlands in order to contribute to the health of our underwater ecosystems as much as possible.”

In its efforts, Sea Farm Ijmond is hoping to make big companies more aware of their impact on the underwater world. Nikki Spil added: “When we talk about climate change, we often focus on what’s happening on the land. The consequences for life underwater tend to be forgotten. With the sea farm we want to show companies that there is a different way. How awesome would it be if every enterprise wouldn’t put financial profit, but collaborating with nature at the top of their priority list?”.

Sea Farm Ijmond are able to harvest between 12,000-16,000 kilos of wet seaweed every year. After the harvest, the seaweed is brought to a refinery in Petten where it is purified and then turned into a natural fertiliser, while the remaining seaweed prepared for the use in bioplastics.

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyles including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at


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