About Us

Why Ocean Upwelling?

How our idea was born.

Our journey began in 2005 when Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans.

Philip Kithil, our founder and CEO, saw the devastation and was moved to do something about it.

He designed and tested a wave-powered pump that would bring cold seawater to the ocean’s surface to reduce the intensity of hurricanes.

It worked perfectly, though commercializing the idea proved difficult.

Soon after, Philip learned that when you pump seawater from the deep ocean, you also grow tiny plants called phytoplankton via a natural marine phenomenon known as Ocean Upwelling.

Like trees on the land, phytoplankton consume CO2 as they grow, but much faster.

When phytoplankton die, they sink to the ocean floor, locking up that CO2 for up to 1200 years or more.

It’s a 100% natural carbon sequestration system that returns life to the sea.

How do we upwell the ocean?

With wave energy, of course!

We design, manufacture, deploy and manage fleets of wave-powered Ocean Upwelling Pumps, a patent pending technology that mimics coastal ocean upwelling far offshore and away from coral reefs on the high seas.

There, waves are much higher, allowing the buoy at the surface (attached to a submerged vertical fabric tube) to bob up and down on the waves.

At the bottom end of the fabric tube is a heavy one-way valve with a protective mesh guard, so marine life does not enter the pump, which pumps (or upwells) nutrient-rich seawater to the surface that begins to grow phytoplankton incredibly fast.

What can we do with Ocean Upwelling?

We can sequester CO2 and replenish the ocean with fish and marine life

Ocean Upwelling’s potential for Marine Carbon Dioxide Removal (mCDR) is incredible because it achieves these essential outcomes:

  1. Directly captures and sequesters CO2 from the atmosphere and stores it in the ocean.
  2. Replenishes the ocean with fish and other marine life near the pump.
  3. Destratifies the surface of the ocean (cooling) near the pump.
  4. Oxygenates the waters near the pump.
  5. Creates mCDR credits that companies can use to make ocean-friendly-net-zero carbon emission products or services like automobiles, airline services, and smartphones like the one in your hand.

Ocean Upwelling is:

Scalable

  • 65% of the Earth’s surface area is ocean desert, the best environment for ocean upwelling pump technology.

Affordable

  • Requires no electricity to operate, powered by ocean waves.

Few conflicts

  • Pumps are deployed far offshore and away from coral reefs to circulate in the ocean deserts.
  • Requires no land.
  • Requires no water use.
  • Far away from coastal communities.
  • Fishers will love them because they produce more fish and are deployed in unproductive waters (ocean deserts).

Durable & Measurable

  • Ocean Upwelling Pumps can sequester carbon dioxide for up to 1200 years or more.
  • We equip each Pump with Sensors and GPS to track and monitor their operating status.

You can learn more about Ocean Upwelling and its scientific basis here.

Mission

Our goal is to scale up ocean upwelling pump technology to store billions of tons of CO2 in the deep ocean and return life to the sea.

By doing this, we’ll help companies achieve ocean-friendly-net-zero carbon emissions; governments meet their Paris Climate Accord promises to slow global warming and replenish sea life.

We do this by pumping nutrients from the deep ocean to the surface by mimicking ocean upwelling far offshore and away from coral reefs.

The phytoplankton that they grow absorb carbon dioxide and feeds marine life.

We must build pumps that can withstand harsh ocean environments, deploy them safely, measure CO2 sequestered accurately, pay our team a living wage, and maintain a diverse, inclusive, objective-based workplace for the good of our world.

Vision

Our vision is to enable wave energy to slow global warming and return life to the sea.