Chef Angel Leon of Cadiz, Spain, has a vision that goes well beyond his kitchen. He and his team have experimented for years with unique applications of sea life in their cuisine. Now he has bitten off a huge task that has huge potential implications for the world: He plans to domesticate eelgrass, both for food production and for carbon sequestration. The eelgrass produces a rice that he plans to use in a variety of culinary applications. But the bigger payoff is eelgrass’s ability to sequester carbon -- scientists have long identified seagrasses as one of the most vital ecosystems in the fight against climate change. Leon’s even bigger vision is isolating the genes that allow this grass to grow in salt water and using that to crossbreed into other staples, such as corn, lentils or lettuce. “It’s not just the rice. It’s the dream of having an underwater garden for human beings,” Leon said.

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