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Earth Day is a time to think about how we can help protect our planet from environmental damage. One such way is by supporting innovative tech companies. They can implement the necessary change to alleviate the pressures from the Earth. Unfortunately, many barriers prevent these companies from making real change. These include lack of investment, implementation and awareness.

Look into your own work and life and see where you might be able to lower barriers to success for these companies. Often, things that might seem simple for one person (introductions, business skills, access to project funding) can be unattainable for small companies. These companies may be led by excellent engineers but are sometimes new to the worlds of business and policy. Here is how you can lend a hand. 

Investors/VC 

Has your firm considered funding ocean technologies? The needs are clearly defined, and the companies that crack the solutions will have a large and motivated market to serve. There are financial returns to be made. However, access to capital for ocean technologies currently falls woefully short of what is needed, particularly in the scale-up space. You have the power to massively accelerate positive change.

Government

The global economic value of the ocean is estimated at ~$24T. So how are you protecting your natural capital in the long term? There are many companies with technology that can make real, lasting change. However, they need governmental help. Your support via pilots, capital and access to resources will massively increase the chance of success. Often, small companies will make small amounts of money and resources go a long way (we have to, there’s not a lot out there!).

Supply chain (processors, retailers, logistics)

You have a huge part to play here. Identify the impacts caused by your supply chain and reach out to tech companies working to mitigate them. They have the solutions but need the opportunity to commercially deploy them. What may seem incredibly simple to you (access to pilots, supply chain partners, project funding, marketing) can often be unattainable for small companies. 

Consumers 

You are more useful than you think! It’s your money that sustains an industry, so your voice matters. Continue to demand for fish products with better traceability, sustainability and welfare for fishing crews. 

Outside of lobbying and voting with your wallet, your skills and connections could be game-changers for small ocean-tech companies. For small businesses, exposure is priceless. Raising awareness of a company can lead to countless opportunities. Whether you retweet a company’s post, talk to your friends about them or simply follow them on social media, it’s all greatly appreciated. You might also be an expert in policy or raising funds (private/public), or you might know someone in an ocean-connected industry, or perhaps you’re willing to help with community outreach and introductions. These are all super useful to nascent (and growing) businesses, and often out of reach for ocean tech organisations.

Discover some of the ocean-tech businesses working to reduce the pressure on our oceans here: https://sntech.co.uk/blog/seaspiracy-2-the-solutions/

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