Archive | 6.09 - Sep 1998 | Electric Word

Reefer Madness

Over the next few years, Todd Barber plans to sink 1 million concrete spheres into the ocean around the Philippines. The Johnny Appleseed of coral reefs, Barber aims to replace the estimated 29,000 square miles of dead reefs around the world with millions of artificial building blocks called Reef Balls - a patented, ecofriendly concrete that resembles Swiss cheese.

In 1993, Barber founded the Reef Ball Development Group (www.reefball.com/) and a sister nonprofit supported by the company. Though the outfit has already deployed more than 40,000 Reef Balls, the 35-year-old Barber worries that it may be too little, too late. "There won't be enough concrete on the planet if destruction continues at this rate."

- Michael Menduno

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