Nature-based carbon removal company Funga, founded by Dr. Colin Averill, combines DNA sequencing and machine learning technology with research on forest microbiomes. The company has recently raised US $4 million in a funding round, reported TechCrunch.
Their method enables Funga to place native biodiverse communities of mycorrhizal fungi in the right place. Their system relies on the concept that reintroducing wild soil microbial biodiversity can accelerate plant growth by 64% which can bolster carbon capture.
“An entire galaxy exists below our feet, made up of millions of species of bacteria and fungi. These microscopic organisms have profound effects on forest growth and carbon capture, that until now have been overlooked as a way to accelerate natural climate solutions while also restoring essential microbial biodiversity to our soils,” said Averill in an interview with TechCrunch.
“Our team at ETH Zürich’s Crowther Lab has spent years documenting how these fungi ultimately affect tree growth. We’ve learnt that restoration of belowground fungal communities can significantly accelerate plant growth and carbon capture. We’re thankful for the support of our investors that will allow our team to take this science out of the lab and into our forests, generating biodiversity and climate action at scale.”