The Biomimicry Institute and the Ray C. Anderson Foundation announced that this year’s Ray of Hope Prize was awarded to ECOncrete Tech LTD., a science-based company that develops high performance, environmentally-sensitive concrete products for coastal and marine infrastructure projects. 

 

ECOncrete offers products that facilitate the growth and regeneration of local marine species and strengthen structures over time through a process known as bioprotection. 

 

Inspired by beach rock formations, coral polyps, oyster shells, mangrove roots, and other marine habitats and life forms, ECOncrete embodies biomimicry’s design intention: to learn from and mimic forms and processes found in nature to create regenerative solutions. 

 

With over 50 percent of the world’s population concentrated along coastlines, natural ecosystems are severely stressed. 

 

The combined threats of sea-level rise and extreme weather events mean that coastlines worldwide need eco-sensitive development, retrofitting, and intensive maintenance — a potential multibillion-dollar market for ECOncrete’s products. 

 

ECOncrete’s proprietary technology is based on three science-based elements that work in synergy: Bio- enhancing concrete admix, rough surface texture, and locally-attuned 3D design that fosters the growth of native plants and animals. 

 

ECOncrete’s diverse team is composed of marine biologists, coastal/marine engineers, product designers, and marketing and sales professionals. Together, they are revitalizing coastlines across the globe with projects in New York, Georgia, Florida, London, and in the Netherlands. 

 

The Ray of Hope Prize celebrates and accelerates nature-inspired solutions to address the world’s environmental and sustainability challenges. 

 

The $100,000 prize competition is named after Ray C. Anderson, the founder of Interface, Inc. 

 

It embodies Ray’s quest to prove that sustainability is not just the right thing to do, but the smart thing to do for business. 

 

ECOncrete’s vision to change the way coastal and marine construction industries operate impressed an expert panel of judges who recognized the spirit of Ray’s mantra of “doing well by doing good” in the company’s strategy to learn from nature’s designs. 

 

“The most simple and straightforward test for biomimetic design may simply be to see how compatible it is with all surrounding living systems, not just serving humans,” said Beth Rattner, executive director of The Biomimicry Institute. “ECOncrete’s solution promotes ecological diversity, is safe, and supports the life that is designed around. This design is truly well-adapted for its ecosystems, and that is what ultimately sets the solution apart.” 

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