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A Case for Fish Farming in Egypt to Combat Climate Change and Increase Revenue

For Egypt, a country with a chronic shortage of water, expanding the fish farming industry may not seem like a practical strategy. But that’s just what some scientists and entrepreneurs say Egypt needs to cope with the impacts of climate change. Egypt, which will host next week’s COP27 climate summit, is already the top producer of farmed fish in Africa. Parts of the vast Nile Delta are dotted with man-made, open-air ponds stocked with tilapia, perch, and other fish. Aquaculture has become increasingly popular in recent years, as breeding and technology improvements make each pond more productive and profitable. Government’s policies have sometimes made fish farming more difficult. Rental prices paid to the government for fish farms on state-owned land have quadrupled in the last few years, even as regulation of water pollution from sewage and industrial sources has lagged, contaminating at least 1,300 fish farms, according to a 2022 investigation by Climate Tracker. In 2017, the government also opened its own 4,000-acre commercial fish farm, which researchers and fish farmers blame for contributing to the rising cost of feed. The government farm also undercuts the fish prices offered by independent farmers.