Fellows in the News

In July, Schmidt Marine Technology Partners announced the winners of the inaugural Coastal Pollution Challenge, created to support the development of innovative solutions to reduce nutrient pollution plaguing the globe’s waterways. The winners are three start-up companies and a university.  


Schmidt Marine Technology Partners is a program of The Schmidt Family Foundation, which will fund more than $1.5 million over two years to the winners’ projects to advance their technologies and demonstrate commercial viability.  

Kevin Kung's organization was one of the selected winners.
Takachar has developed a technology that produces inexpensive biochar, a carbon-negative additive to conventional fertilizers, which are the primary source of nutrient pollution from farms and industrial agriculture. The company has developed low-cost machines that use organic material like sugar cane pulp and rice husks to create biochar-fertilizer blends in rural villages–enabling farmers to generate their own nutrient-rich fertilizer on site that improves soil health and continues providing needed nutrients over the long term rather than washing away and entering waterways as conventional fertilizers do. Takachar is already working with a partner in Kenya and is developing additional global partnerships. 


Additional Resources

In addition, the organization recently published two journal articles on the localized utilization of biomass in California:


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