Offering commercial legal advice to not-for-profit organisations and social enterprises.

Led by Dr. Brian von Herzen, the Climate Foundation is tackling the impacts of increasing ocean surface temperatures on seaweed forests, as waters become too warm and sterile for kelp, by implementing marine permaculture projects in Australia (& beyond) to regenerate kelp and other seaweed forests. Every degree of warming kills at least 5% of living biomass in the oceans. The kelp forest ecosystem is essential to the food chain.

Marine permaculture uses submerged platforms to cultivate seaweed offshore. The top 1-2 meters are harvested, leaving most as marine habitat. Seaweed falls off the platform & sinks to the seafloor in hours where it acts as a carbon sink. This carbon sequestration can be measured from the platform.

Led by Partner Tim Hanmore, MinterEllison has supported this important and innovative work through over 950 pro bono hours of legal work to:

1. establish & register the Australian entity & advise on deductible gift recipient status,
2. navigate complex approval processes,
3. advise on relationships with partners, universities, Cooperative Research Centres & other stakeholders,
4. consider fundraising models,
5. work through maritime law issues associated with marine permaculture vessel deployment, and
6. advise on intellectual property issues.

The Climate Foundation said “We are grateful for MinterEllison’s substantial contributions to permaculture development. Without them, Climate Foundation would not have progressed nearly as far in developing and scaling marine permaculture in the past 2 years.”