For over a decade, we have been developing a simple solution to help restore damaged coral reefs.
Our solution is a holistic approach to reef restoration. We carefully choose sites where restoration is both necessary and an appropriate solution; we work with local communities to establish sustainable programmes; we monitor our restored reefs regularly to ensure positive whole-ecosystem impact. We call this whole approach the Mars Assisted Reef Restoration System - MARRS. At the centre of the MARRS is a hexagonal structure that we call a Reef Star.
We work with local communities who make strong, hexagonal Reef Stars from locally sourced materials.
We coat Reef Stars with resin and coral sand, which encourages corals and other animals to settle.
We attach a range of sustainably collected coral fragments to each Reef Star.
Working in close collaboration with local communities, organisations and reef stakeholders, we carefully choose sites where reef restoration is both necessary and feasible. Working in teams, we deploy Reef Stars in extensive webs that stretch across large areas of dead coral rubble. We can plant dozens of Reef Stars per hour, covering an area the size of a basketball court in just a few days.
These webs of Reef Stars stabilise loose rubble and provide a strong platform on which outplanted coral can grow. After a few years, the coral completely overgrows and engulfs the Reef Stars, which become fully integrated into the reef structure. This creates new habitats for fish and invertebrates and encourages the settlement of additional native corals. As natural ecological processes kick back into motion, the whole reef comes back to life.