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Dedicated to Saving Coral Reefs for Future Generations

Mission Statement

At the Legacy Reef Foundation, we aim to work with local communities to plan, develop, and support coral reef restoration projects throughout the world.

How We Began

Bill Coney spent his childhood in the ocean, sailing and diving around the Hawaiian islands. He has seen firsthand how the beautiful coral reefs with abundant marine life has been replaced by a bleached submarine landscape resembling rubble from a demolition site.

After a successful career as an entrepreneur, Bill retired and began looking for ways to restore the reefs for future generations. In 2017, during a beach cleanup on the Island of Hawaiʻi, he met Susanne. She was splitting her time between volunteering in Florida for coral restoration initiatives and looking for a way to move to Hawaiʻi permanently.

Bill and Susanne soon discovered that they shared the same passion for diving, protecting the ocean, and making things happen. Together, they recognized that Hawaii is a premier location for ocean conservation and restoration efforts for three reasons.

1. It is where many top marine biologists are located.
2. The island gives researchers access to water from three pipelines that bring seawater straight into the lab from 80 ft, 2,000 ft, and 3,000 ft.
3. It is home to Hawaiian seafarers who have ancient knowledge about the ocean that had been preserved and passed on.

Our Perspective and Ethos

The Problem and Its Impact

We depend on reefs for our survival, both directly and indirectly. Aside from feeding us and protecting our shores, they are also a priceless economic asset since they attract tourists. Unfortunately, we are losing them.

Today, many people are already experiencing the effects of their decline. This is especially true for coastal communities and island nations that chiefly depend on fishing for their daily sustenance.

With near-shore reefs gone, fisherfolk are forced to venture further out in the ocean daily. This makes each trip more costly for them and may even increase their chances of being lost at sea.

Our Response

The Legacy Reef Foundation is committed to the active and responsible restoration of our reefs. We believe that we need to take a multipronged approach to rebuild them on both a local and global scale. That’s why we partner up with local governments, academic communities, and other organizations to come up with integrated, scientifically rigorous, and affordable coral restoration solutions.

We will identify the best science and practices continuously produced in the field. Then, we will apply that knowledge to develop protocols and technological solutions that are environmentally friendly and accessible to all nations and communities.

Strategies for Success

We design, develop, and install coral propagation labs that are off-grid, modular, and mobile. These will allow local communities with limited resources to rebuild resilient reef ecosystems and help reestablish food security for their people. By working together, we can buy time and slow the decline of our reefs and their ecosystems while speeding up their repopulation.