Environmental Department (DMA)

Updated: Monday November 27th, 2023
November 27th, 2023 IFOP

dmaThe Environmental Department is part of IFOP´s Aquaculture Research Division. It was created in 2003 with the mission of providing scientific research to fisheries and aquaculture authorities to take on administrative decisions. The Department plays a strategic role in thematic areas associated with aquaculture.


Strategic roles:

  1. Research, environmental monitoring and diagnostics for decision making and evaluation of standards of administration.
  2. Research and development of technologies for mitigation of aquatic environments and to ensure food safety.
  3. Modeling and forecasting of natural environmental changes and impacts caused by aquaculture.
  4. Development of environmental information and knowledge for coastline management.
  5. Diagnosis, socioeconomic assessments and operational actions in training and education.
  6. Research and development of technologies for the diagnosis of microorganisms and their toxic complexes.

The department´s scientific and technological capabilities are oriented to taxonomic identification of phytoplankton, zooplankton and macroinvertebrates, physical, chemical and biological studies of both sediments and  water column, hydrodynamic modeling of water bodies, mapping adjustments for aquaculture concessions, bacteria proliferation and harmful algal bloom, genetic improvement, ecosystem restoration, analytical chemical studies to know how heavy metals and other compounds impact the water column, sediment and get incorporated into transvector organisms body tissue and finally, capacities associated with molecular biology diagnostic PCR and FISH.

Dr (c) Gastón Vidal Santana (Head of Department)


Gastón Vidal

Dr (c) biochemist and Aquaculture sciences. Head of the Department of Environment since 2003 to date and IFOP member as representative in the Scientific and Technical Committee on Environmental Aquaculture Undersecretariat of Fisheries and Aquaculture from 2014 to date. In managing the Department has focused mainly on promoting the development of lines of work in the oceanographic field , harmful phytoplankton and assessment of environmental effects caused by anthropogenic activities and natural events on a local and global scale. In the field of research , his work has been focused on the development and validation of methodologies to explain processes and indicators associated with environmental stress to chemical and biological level , in addition to the evaluation of stress in fish by developing and monitoring metabolic and epigenetic indicators.
e-mail: gaston.vidal@ifop.cl