Maine Patent of the Month – June 2024

Running Tide Technologies, Inc., a carbon removal company, has pioneered a groundbreaking method for carbon sequestration using macroalgae. By cultivating macroalgae, blue carbon can be sequestered from the ocean, taking it away from the atmosphere and sustainably storing it.

This innovative process begins with seeding a specially designed apparatus with macroalgae. The apparatus, equipped with a buoyant member, initially floats on ocean currents, allowing the macroalgae to grow and accumulate biomass. After a predetermined period, the buoyant member degrades, causing the apparatus and the macroalgae to sink to the ocean floor.

This passive transition from buoyancy to submersion is a key feature of the invention. The degradation rate of the buoyant member is carefully controlled, ensuring that the macroalgae accumulates sufficient biomass before sinking. Once the macroalgae reaches the ocean floor, it sequesters carbon, effectively removing it from the atmosphere. This method targets depths of at least 1,000 meters, where carbon can be sequestered permanently.

Running Tide’s apparatus also includes advanced imaging technology to monitor biomass accumulation. This data is critical for calculating the amount of carbon sequestered, which can then be translated into carbon credits. These credits provide a tangible economic incentive for reducing atmospheric carbon dioxide, aligning environmental benefits with financial rewards.

By utilizing ocean-compatible materials that degrade predictably, Running Tide ensures the process is both efficient and environmentally friendly. This method represents a significant advancement in carbon sequestration technology, offering a scalable, sustainable solution to combat climate change.

This pioneering approach not only addresses the urgent need for carbon sequestration but also supports the health of marine ecosystems. Running Tide’s method exemplifies how innovative engineering and environmental stewardship can work together to create impactful solutions for our planet.

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