Eco-engineers Strive to Save Endangered Marine Species - 28/05/2019

The team at ARC Marine believe a new type of patented marine technology could be used to preserve some of the planet’s most valuable commercial species of fish, while also helping to rebuild damaged reef systems. In the following interview, co-founders Tom Birbeck and James Doddrell explain their innovative solution to one of the world’s most urgent marine challenges.

Inspiration for an Artificial Reef System?

“As highly experienced divers, we had seen first-hand the damage being done to aquatic ecosystems around the world, from Europe to Australia and Fiji. Once these fragile systems are undermined, they can reach a ‘tipping point’ where recovery is almost impossible. And we are not talking about the distant future… if no action is taken, there is a real danger that stocks of many species that people rely on for food could collapse within the next 30 years. Important commercial species such as scallops, crabs, lobsters and shoal fish are in an especially precarious situation. Their decline would not only severely damage the biodiversity of our oceans, but would also have a massive impact on the fishing communities around the world that depend on these species for their survival."

Marine Conservation Projects

"As part of our diving experience, we had both been involved in marine conservation projects which aimed to create new habitats by using ‘recycled’ structures. A classic example would be to sink a disused ship in order to form an artificial reef. We began discussing ideas for a custom-designed artificial reef system: one that could be deployed quickly and cost-effectively and could offer additional benefits beyond marine conservation. This led to the founding of ARC Marine Ltd and the creation of Reef Cubes.”

Read the full story in Hydro International May/June 2019.

Last updated: 28/08/2020