Algae produces approximately five times as much biomass per square foot as soil-grown plants like soya beans.
But algae does not need soil to grow. This means that algae has the potential to become a reliable and major source of renewable energy.
With fuel-prices rising, the slimy pond nuisance could have many new uses.
Video script: Arabella Turek, from the Department of Science and Technology Studies, University College London.