With more than 70% of global coastlines now experiencing increased erosion, the solution we adopt must be long-term, sustainable, and work in harmony with nature. CCell Reefs are a nature-based solution that harnesses natural minerals found in sea-water, while mimicking the wave attenuation and sound of real coral reefs.
Local governments are seeing critical infrastructure being threatened by retreating coastlines and the increased severity and frequency of storms and flooding. Erosion of wide, sandy beaches is reducing their appeal to tourists, and the loss of coral reefs threatens the livelihoods of fishing communities and the health of our oceans.
CCell understands the great risks of coastal erosion, and will work together with governments to take urgent action and protect both vulnerable communities and ecosystems.
Our goal is to create a vibrant ecosystem where plants, corals, and technolgy work in harmony. Not only will this help the reef to thrive, but it can also support the stabilisation of sands (e.g. with sea-grass) and clean coastal waters.
The controls embedded across the reefs allow its growth to be managed over time and damaged sections to be healed. Meanwhile, hi-tech sensors allow the marine environment to be measured at unprecedented levels. This new data will support wider marine research and provide new insights into the marine ecology.
For each site we always conduct detailed surveys of the bathymetry and marine environment within the region. We then collect historic wave data (typically 10 to 20 years) and extablish extreme conditions from an analysis of historical huricane tracks within the region.
This data allows us to accurately model the waves, wave induced currents and sediment transport, and the impact any new structure will have. In particular, we always consider the impact on adjacent coastal regions, something which is often overlooked in traditional 'one size fits all' coastal protection interventions.
Once installed, we continually monitor the reef using remote sensors and regular site inspections to guarantee effectiveness.
The engagement with local communities is central to each installation we undertake.
Local voices are key in defining the secondary function of a reef, be it the attraction of tourists, protection of wildlife or boosting of fishing. Furthermore local knowledge can provide valuable insight into past conditions and natural seasonal variability.
Cell reefs attract visitors to an area with the promise of an accessible, thriving marine ecosystem. Hotels, restaurants and local businesses can all benefit from the resulting increase in tourism.
Acting as a protected nursery for young fish, our reefs help increase biodiversity within the surrounding environment. This can provide a financial benefit to local fishing communities, helping to overcome losses due to past overfishing and coral reef decay.
As the shape and layout of the reefs can be customised, each site can become a unique and exciting experience for divers and snorkellers and the perfect habitat for marine organisms.
Coral growth is faster and more resilient, providing a strong base for spores to spread throughout the region.
The complexity and porosity of the reefs provide shelter to a wide range of marine organisms. Like natural coral reefs they can become nurseries for young fish, boosting numbers across a wide area.
The monitoring capability of CCell Reefs offers access to unprecedented levels of data. Parameters such as ocean conditions, coral growth and fish stocks can be tracked continuously and remotely. This enhances the ability of scientists and conservationists to monitor and protect a site.
Research by the Institute of Marine Sciences at the University of California, estimate that climate change has caused the global mean wave energy to increase by 0.41% per year.
This unprecedented change in the ocean waves has dramatic implications for the coastal environment and is the principal cause of increased erosion. Variations across the globe mean many tropical regions are seeing year on year increases between 1 to 2%.
Through advanced simulation and design, the CCell Reefs are engineered to absorb the increased wave energy, and retain historic levels of wave activity along coastlines.