The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) has announced the completion of the final stages of an artificially constructed reef, located 3.8km from the shoreline of Barakah, the home of the UAE’s peaceful nuclear energy program.
Developed in partnership with the National Marine Dredging Company (NMDC), and in line with guidance from ENEC’s environmental regulator, the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD), the Barakah Artificial Reef Project is just one of the proactive environmental initiatives being implemented by ENEC to ensure the long-term sustainability of the natural areas surrounding the Barakah site.
The almost 6,700 square meter reef, roughly the size of one football field, was constructed using recycled molded concrete core-locs originally utilized in the assembly of Barakah’s coastal breakwater. Almost 1800 of the large concrete units were carefully positioned on the ocean floor using a GPS aided crane to create the underwater reef structure.
The lattice formation of the reef is designed to replicate a natural coral reef, and works to stimulate the local ecosystem by improving the existing seabed habitat, providing additional shelter for marine life, and encouraging biodiversity.
The enhanced habitat is expected to attract a range of marine species including algae, invertebrates such as barnacles, corals, and oysters, and a variety of small and large fish.