Inaugural Event Brings Together Statewide Innovators to Grow Maryland's Blue Tech Industry

BlueTechMaryland Consortium Seeks to Create a Hub for Innovation and Bring More Investors and Entrepreneurs to the State

Baltimore, Md. (Nov. 16, 2021) – BlueTechMaryland–a newly formed partnership to collaborate on technological innovations in aquaculture, flooding management, offshore wind, urban waterfronts, and other elements of aquaculture climate change–will hold its inaugural event on Tuesday, Nov. 16.

This gathering of innovators across Maryland’s growing aquaculture ecosystem will begin at 10 a.m. at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB). Attendees will be directed to the UMB campus location at 621 W. Lombard Street in Baltimore.

Partnership members will discuss the principles of “Blue Tech” innovation and explain why Maryland can be one of the nation’s top three regional blue tech clusters.

Details on the conference and its speakers are here.

BlueTechMaryland will bring together numerous groups for its inaugural event, several of which are part of the University System of Maryland (USM): bwtech@umbc; the Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology (IMET); and the Maryland Momentum Fund.

“We must recognize and support how entrepreneurs in Baltimore and throughout Maryland are tackling climate change through private sector innovation, delivering new technologies in sustainable infrastructure and marine tech,” said Claire Broido Johnson, managing director of the USM’s Maryland Momentum Fund (MMF). The fund invests in USM-affiliated companies to support entrepreneurism, catalyze outside investment in early-stage startups, and foster economic development and technology commercialization.

“Our state’s growing climate tech community is poised to be part of a strong, growing climate tech market,” Johnson said.

Maryland has a thriving aquaculture industry and a growing offshore wind industry.

“We are the anchor for a new mid-Atlantic blue economy cluster with all the capabilities and assets located in this economically dense Interstate-95 corridor at the beginning of the Chesapeake, America’s largest estuary,” Johnson said.

The U.S. produces $1.5 billion of aquaculture seafood per year. Amplified by President Biden’s visit last week to the Port of Baltimore, shipping and infrastructure investment remains a major source of job growth. Offshore wind on the East Coast is a generational opportunity, one that will create good-paying jobs, abundant renewable energy, and economic growth.

Maryland will play a central role in the renewable power contracts and the infrastructure for the emerging supply chain.

Impactful Role from Maryland Momentum Fund Startup Investments

Minnowtech, a MMF portfolio company, measures the biomass of shrimp from murky water. Several other start-up companies with early-round investment funding from the MMF are reducing carbon emissions. Baltimore-based Dynamhex is creating baseline carbon dioxide emissions that enable corporations, municipalities, and utilities to align their climate reduction targets with cost effective, data-driven and verifiable emissions reductions. Maryland-based Liatris has developed low-carbon solutions that make buildings more efficient, affordable, comfortable and safe. The company has created lightweight, non-flammable insulation via partnerships with Sto, Dvele and other leading construction partners.

In a recent interview with Baltimore, Johnson noted that BlueTechMD seeks to make Maryland one of the top three blue tech innovation hubs in the U.S.

Some natural factors work in the state’s favor, with economic anchors and research centers located near and sometimes directly on the water.

“Private sector innovation is key to tackling the great challenges ahead,” Johnson said. “We must change the reputation of Maryland as a laggard in environmental investments and recognize and advance the innovations happening here. If we don’t, we will lose significant opportunities to create long-term, high paying jobs in the climate and environmental tech sector. Maryland-based corporations that stand to benefit from these technologies have an opportunity to step up as buyers and partners.

It’s time for us to recruit and support the next generation of innovators to join our emerging climate tech communityand make Maryland an innovation hub,” Johnson said.

In addition to the USM-affiliated entities cited above, these additional groups will be part of the consortium:

Contact: Mike Lurie
Phone: 301.445.2719