Climatic Change

, Volume 150, Issue 3–4, pp 195–210 | Cite as

Impact of intensive fish farming on methane emission in a tropical hydropower reservoir

  • Marcelo Gomes da Silva
  • Ana Paula PackerEmail author
  • Fernanda G. Sampaio
  • Luciano Marani
  • Ericka V. C. Mariano
  • Ricardo A. A. Pazianotto
  • Willian J. Ferreira
  • Plínio C. Alvalá


Fisheries and aquaculture are important sources of food for hundreds of millions of people around the world. World fish production is projected to increase by 15% in the next 10 years, reaching around 200 million tonnes per year. The main driver of this increase will be based on fish farming management in developing countries. In Brazil, fish farming is increasing due to the climate conditions and large supply of water resources, with the production system based on Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) farming in reservoirs. Inland waters like reservoirs are a natural source of methane (CH4) to the atmosphere. However, knowledge of the impact from intensive fish production in net cages on CH4 fluxes is not well known. This paper presents in situ measurements of CH4 fluxes and dissolved CH4 (DM) in the Furnas Hydroelectric Reservoir in order to evaluate the impact of fish farming on methane emissions. Measurements were taken in a control area without fish production and three areas with fish farming. The overall mean of diffusive methane flux (DMF) (5.9 ± 4.5 mg CH4 m−2 day−1) was significantly lower when compared to the overall mean of bubble methane flux (BMF) (552.9 ± 1003.9 mg CH4 m−2 day−1). The DMF and DM were significantly higher in the two areas with fish farming, whereas the BMF was not significantly different. The DMF and DM were correlated to depth and chlorophyll-a. However, the low production of BMF did not allow the comparison with the limnological parameters measured. This case study shows that CH4 emissions are influenced more by reservoir characteristics than fish production. Further investigation is necessary to assess the impact of fish farming on the greenhouse gas emissions.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marcelo Gomes da Silva
    • 1
  • Ana Paula Packer
    • 2
    Email author
  • Fernanda G. Sampaio
    • 2
  • Luciano Marani
    • 3
  • Ericka V. C. Mariano
    • 4
  • Ricardo A. A. Pazianotto
    • 1
  • Willian J. Ferreira
    • 3
  • Plínio C. Alvalá
    • 3
  1. 1.National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq)BrasiliaBrazil
  2. 2.Embrapa EnvironmentBrazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (EMBRAPA)JaguariúnaBrazil
  3. 3.Nacional Institute for Space Research (Inpe)São José dos CamposBrazil
  4. 4.Alagoas Federal UniversityMaceioBrazil

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