Mumbai, 09th March, 2023: RPG Foundation (RPGF) has initiated a marine conservation initiative under Project nature:re. At nature:re, we take small steps to rebalance our planet to reconnect us to nature. Under nature:re ocean, we aim to enhance marine biodiversity and support the livelihood of coastal communities.

Rolling into action, we are installing 210 artificial reefs in the ocean near Worli, Mumbai on 7th March 2024 between 8am to 10am.

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Reefs provide a win-win solution that serves the environment by creating carbon sinks and by increasing biomass, they provide more fishing opportunities to coastal communities.

An artificial reef is a concrete structure made from cement and steel. When immersed, they initiate the formation of bacterial biofilm, which covers the surface of the artificial reef modules. Over time, they will be covered by micro and macro algae. They also become a sanctuary for small and large-sized native fish species. This transformation is visible between 3-6 months.

Over the years, fisher folks in the city have been experiencing a drop in their incomes due to the declining fish population caused due to pollution from sewage and plastic waste being dumped into the oceans. Artificial reefs remove pollutants from water, providing a natural filtration process for the water. As the reefs mature, they transform into carbon sinks as they increase the sea surface area (about 50-60 sqft per module), which results in more productivity and biodiversity. This ability to capture carbon from the air would be a potentialsolution for the deteriorating air quality of the city.

RPG Foundation has commissioned Kuddle Life Foundation, a marine conservation NGO, for scientific assessments and timely evaluation. We plan to extend its success to other areas in Mumbai and beyond.

Such projects reflect RPG Foundation’s commitment to addressing environmental and social issues responsibly. As we launch this initiative, we renew our dedication to creating a better future for marine life and coastal communities.

How have artificial reefs helped globally?

Across the globe, there are efforts taken to build climate-resilient artificial reefs that are like underwater homes for marine life. Countries like Indonesia, Australia, the US, Japan, India and Venezuela, to name a few, are spearheading successful reef projects to combat climate change. They help bring back marine animals to areas where their habitats have been damaged. These reefs also protect coastlines from big waves and storms, preventing erosion. People love visiting these reefs for activities like snorkeling and diving, which brings in tourists and helps local economies.