In 2022, the Balearic Islands Port Authority (APB) has launched The mussel project as a bioremediator in the waters of the port of Palma. A study conducted by the Balearic Oceanographic Center, which has confirmed its viability and survival after passing the first tests.

mejillones puerto de palma

Photo: Ports de Balears.

With the logistical support of the company Astilleros de Mallorca, the Oceanográfico scientists have begun their first work in the port of Palma, installing several “ropes” with mussels provided by the shellfish collectors of Menorca. Specifically, ropes with 30 mussels have been installed in the dock of the Astilleros de Mallorca facilities, another in those of the La Lonja Marina Charter nautical concession and the last outside the port. This allows to control and differentiate parameters with those of the interior.

Every three months the tissues of the mussels will be analyzed, determining the amount of hydrocarbons, heavy metals and microplastics that they accumulate. If they were beneficial and viable for the final biofiltering of port waters, they would be scaled up and transferred to other ports.

4,000 meters of rope

Scientists say that some 4,000 meters of mussel rope could filter all the water in the port of Palma every three months, since each mussel filters up to two liters of water per hour. A bioremediation system used for the first time on a large scale in New York with very good results. The mussels will in no case be destined for consumption.