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Why GreenWave?

We are a new generation of ocean farmers feeding the planet and building a blue-green economy in the era of climate change. GreenWave is a non-profit organization founded in 2014 dedicated to climate resilience and equity. We work in two areas: farm replication and market innovation. Our goal is a blue green economy - built and led by restorative ocean farmers - that feeds local communities while protecting the planet.

The Problem

Land-based food production is in crisis - driven by climate change & population increase. We have to grow 70% more food by 2050 to accommodate 2 billion more people on the planet (World Bank 2017). While we try to feed more people, land-based farm yields will continue to drop with climate change and land degradation and will be insufficient for necessary production. Land-based agriculture contributes 24% of global greenhouse gas emissions - more than transportation (11%) and just as much as burning fossil fuels (25%). Wild fisheries cannot bear the burden: fish stocks are either fully fished or overfished.

The Solution: 3D Ocean Farming

GreenWave’s polyculture vertical farming system grows a mix of seaweeds and shellfish that require zero inputs - making it the most sustainable form of food production on the planet - while sequestering carbon and rebuilding reef ecosystems. Since our farms sit below the surface and leverage the entire water column, they produce high yields with a small footprint. Our crops are used as food, fertilizer, animal feed and more. And, our farms are open source: anyone with 20 acres, a boat, and $20K can be up and running within one year. Our goal: 500 farms, 10 regions, 5 years.


Key Benefits of Ocean Farming

1. Restorative & Regenerative

Zero inputs (no fresh water, fertilizer, feed, land)

Sequesters Carbon and Nitrogen

Provides storm surge protection

Rebuilds marine ecosystems

Cattle feed that contains 1% seaweed reduced methane output by 58%

2. Replicable

The GreenWave Reef model: our way of replicating in new areas. Each Reef has 25 to 50 small-scale ocean farms, a land-based hatchery and processing hub, and a ring of large-scale institutional buyers & entrepreneurs developing value-added products. These Reefs are then replicated up and down coastlines.

3. Scalable Impact

The World Bankestimates farming 5% of US waters could create 50 million new jobs; absorb 10 million tons of nitrogen & 135 million tons of carbon, and produce the equivalent protein of 3 trillion cheeseburgers. Thousands of plants grow in the ocean - this is just the beginning of a whole new plant-based ocean industry.

4. Markets

Our Market Innovation Program scales demand for our farmers’ crops by incubating early-stage product development, mobilizing investment, and opening new market opportunities for farmers. Our crops are used as food, fertilizer, animal feed, and more.



To date, GreenWave has trained and supported over 50 farmers and entrepreneurs throughout New England, California, New York, the Pacific Northwest and Alaska.


“25 Best Inventions of 2017” by TIME Magazine

2017 Sustania Award

International INDEX Award (2017)

Executive Director, Bren Smith, named one of “25 People Shaping the Future” by Rolling Stone


Check out a list of our partners here.

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