Chinese scientists plan to grow saltwater-tolerant rice in seawater. According to local media reports, the experiment will be conducted on Hainan Island. A plot with an area of 7 hectares will be allocated for the project, with the area to be increased later on.
The method is unique because rice will be grown in saline soil, the upper layer of which contains salts. Other plants die in similar conditions. Rice is unlikely to be cultivated in seawater anytime soon, as the salt concentration in the South China Sea is more than two times higher than that at which rice cultivation is possible.
If the coastal area (7 million hectares of saline soil) is sown with rice, the harvested crops will be enough to feed about 200 million people.
Growing rice in such conditions would be great for some areas of China. In 2014, Typhoon Rammasun polluted fields with salt, thereby reducing the area of fertile land.