Fuel, base chemicals, and power company Idemitsu is funding a "blue carbon" accelerator run by Hatch.

Energy company seeks 'blue carbon' pioneers as it bids for carbon neutrality

Japanese generator funds Hatch programme for start-ups and scale-ups


Aquaculture business accelerator Hatch Blue has teamed up with Japanese energy company Idemitsu to launch a new programme for start-ups and companies looking to scale up.

Idemitsu is sponsoring the two-week Blue Carbon Innovation Studio programme, which will be free for the eight to 10 companies chosen to take part. Unlike its previous accelerator programmes, Hatch won’t seek an equity stake in the participant companies in return for its services.

The programme, which will be held in Singapore from November 11-22 this year, seeks to attract start-ups and scale-ups with technologies capable of sequestering/reducing carbon through ocean and coastal ecosystems.

It welcomes a wide array of “blue carbon” solutions, including innovations in seaweed and microalgae, as well as technology-based approaches and technologies for measurement, reporting, and verification (MRV) of carbon credits, and carbon accounting and/or finance solutions.

Blue carbon investments

Hatch already has investments in three companies in the blue carbon space. These are:

  • JALA, which is working to sustainably increase shrimp farm productivity while restoring mangroves in the same location. The mangroves filter farm effluents and increase climate resilience of the farms.
  • Symbrosia, which cultivates the fast-growing seaweed, Asparagopsis, for feed ingredients that drastically reduce livestock methane emissions.
  • Brilliant Planet, which grows algae in seawater ponds in the desert and converts it into a stable biomass that is then buried, permanently removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. The process also de-acidifies vast amounts of seawater, thereby strengthening the local coastal ecosystem.

Solutions should be deployable in Japan, Southeast Asia, and the greater Pacific region including the west coast of the United States.

The programme includes pitch and investor guidance, full Hatch Blue and Idemitsu team access, and exposure to the wider Blue Carbon network in Singapore.

Funded travel

Hatch and Idemitsu are offering funding support for travel and accommodation.

Idemitsu aims to achieve carbon neutrality - something usually done by offsetting emissions - by 2050. Keitaro Sugihara, president and chief executive of Idemitsu Americas Holdings, told Hatch Blue-owned website The Fish Site that the energy company had been collaborating with Hatch Blue to deeply explore the ocean’s potential in decarbonisation.

“We see significant potential in what blue carbon can achieve. Our teams in the United States, Singapore, and Japan will work closely together with Hatch Blue on this programme to discover and implement innovative solutions,” said Sugihara.

A more resilient future

Wayne Murphy, co-founder and partner of Ireland-based Hatch Blue, said: “Our focus here will be to support and develop those innovative solutions that will not only protect our planet but also unlock the potential of blue carbon ecosystems to create a more sustainable and resilient future for all. We are incredibly proud to partner with Idemitsu on this critical sector initiative as we work towards selecting the best ideas and companies for the programme that will drive the necessary impact and change.”

The closing date for applications is August 30. More information about the Idemitsu Blue Carbon Innovation Studio can be found here.