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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Innovation and Tourism Industry Development and Minister for the Commonwealth Games
    The Honourable Kate Jones

    Nanotechnology from Nambour decreases Reef threat

    Minister for Innovation and Tourism Industry Development and Minister for the Commonwealth Games
    The Honourable Kate Jones

    Saturday, July 21, 2018

    Nanotechnology from Nambour decreases Reef threat

    A Nambour startup has devised an innovative product to reduce polluting nutrients in water, helping to minimise the threat to the Great Barrier Reef.

    AlgaEnviro uses nanotechnology to create tiny parcels of micro-nutrients that feed naturally occurring diatoms, a type of helpful algae, while starving out forms of algae that threaten the reef.

    This keeps water healthy and controls toxic algae blooms - a major threat to coral reefs.

    Innovation Minister Kate Jones said regional startups like AlgaEnviro are harnessing innovation and creating jobs for Queensland’s future.

    “We’re committed to helping businesses in places like Nambour to translate their ideas into products and services that create jobs and make the world a better place,” Ms Jones said.

    “There is huge potential for this concept to help to preserve the reef and also great commercial scope to scale up AlgaEnviro’s business to create sustainable jobs in Queensland.

    “Advance Queensland’s $6 million Advancing Regional Innovation Program is focused on innovation initiatives that utilise the strengths of local firms.

    “We were proud to support AlgaEnviro to connect with global innovation leaders at the Myriad innovation festival earlier this year.

    “This clever startup was one of 120 regional innovators supported by the Palaszczuk Government to showcase at the event and rub shoulders with some of the world’s entrepreneurs and investors.”

    AlgaEnviro uses a natural process for maintaining water health without the use of poisons or algicides.

    This process inhibits the growth of harmful algae, which can grow out of control and smother parts of the coral reef, blocking sunlight required for photosynthesis.

    It also reduces pollution on farms and rivers before the water reaches the reef, resulting in fewer Crown of Thorns starfish that feed on reef coral.

    The startup’s product is being used in waterways, farming, aquaculture and sewage treatment.

    Founder Dr Simon Tannock said showcasing at the Myriad Festival’s Regional Innovation Showcase opened up opportunities to grow and expand his business.

    “We are on the cusp of making a huge difference to water health and we made invaluable connections at Myriad that will allow us to take it to the next level,” Dr Tannock said.

    “We are also developing a nanotechnology system for farmers to grow natural particles that will not only improve moisture retention in soils, saving irrigation water, but will also transport bio-available nutrients to the soil. This will save millions of litres of water, as well as increasing productivity.

    “As we continue to develop our technologies, we are now looking to expand our manufacturing and create jobs on the Sunshine Coast, where we are based.  

    “Attending Myriad has given us more exposure to the right people and we expect that the conversations to come will create new projects.”

    ARIP is part of the $650 million flagship Advance Queensland whole-of-government initiative to transform Queensland’s economy, create the knowledge jobs of the future and build the state’s reputation as a global innovation and investment destination.

    Under ARIP, the Palaszczuk Government is supporting innovative businesses and communities across Queensland in a statewide commitment to boost innovation and entrepreneurship and empower the regions.

    Visit the Advance Queensland website for more details about ARIP at: https://advance.qld.gov.au/entrepreneurs-startups/advancing-regional-innovation.aspx.

    Media contact: 0419 620 447