Boulders being sunk as stone reef project begins

Only time will tell if the initiative will be effective in improving water quality

The food and agriculture minister, Esben Lunde Larsen, was in Jutland today to help toss some of the massive granite boulders into the sea as part of a project for a new stone reef in Limfjorden.

The huge boulders, weighing upwards of three tonnes each, will be deposited in the sea in Løgstør Bredning near Livø, which is a so-called Natura 2000 area – an area deemed as being protected by the EU.

Aside from being a solution to high nitrate levels, the reef is also expected to contribute to biodiversity in the area.

“By dropping the boulders in Limfjorden, we reach a milestone in the stone reef project,” said Larsen.

“Over the next few years, I look forward to us collecting data that can reveal whether stone reefs are useful agents in combating nitrate levels in future marine plans. And simultaneously, whether it can become an oasis for marine wildlife and plants in the fjord.”

READ MORE: Fabulous Fanø leads the way as Denmark’s top nature habitat

Seaweed saviours
In theory, seaweed will grow on the boulders and produce enough oxygen that the nitrates won’t be released by the seabed.

The project is set to run for five years. A total of 10,000 cubic metres of granite have been brought in to make up the reef – roughly about ten shiploads.

About 20 million kroner has been set aside for the project, which was voted through in the Food and Agriculture Package with the support of Venstre, Liberal Alliance, Konservative and Dansk Folkeparti.