Intern, Biology and Nursery
Seattle, Washington /
Research & Development – Biology Operations /
Our mission is simple: Make reforestation scalable to mitigate the worst effects of climate change. Trees are highly effective at carbon removal, but scaling reforestation has significant obstacles--and that gets our team fired up about how we can build solutions using technology. We’ve built DroneSeed, and acquired and combined it with 130-year-old Silvaseed to be a one-stop-shop for reforestation and remove obstacles at each of four steps:
- Seed. Natural regeneration after wildfire is in decline due to climate change resulting in larger fires of higher severity. These factors eliminate seed stored in the soil for regeneration. This creates challenges for seed supply. To respond we’ve expanded Silvaseed to become the largest private seed bank in the west and the first call for land managers affected by fire.
- Grow space. There’s not enough nursery greenhouse capacity to grow seedlings (link). We’re currently growing millions of seedlings per year at Silvaseed and, while we’re doubling that output, we’re creating a replicable method to scale further.
- Better tools for labor. We need better tools to accomplish more reforestation faster. DroneSeed is utilizing heavy lift drone swarms to deliver seed vessels after wildfire and boost seed establishment in combination with seedlings that are interplanted later.
- Finance. For the last 20 years, carbon offsets haven’t provided capital for the high-up front costs of reforestation. Landowners have had to rely on limited grant funding. Repayment periods were 25 years or more and reforestation projects were exceedingly rare. That changed two years ago when third-party certifier Climate Action Reserve (CAR) announced the Climate Forward protocol to conservatively forecast the carbon tonne removals as reforested trees grow. DroneSeed is developing one of the first projects using this protocol. This and future projects following the protocol will be protected by legal easements on replanted and re-seeded land, monitored by state-accredited land trusts, and have insurance buffer pools in place in case fire occurs again. Under the CAR protocol, DroneSeed is generating the most transparent, highest-quality forestry-based carbon offsets on the market from reforestation projects.
We need to overcome these four reforestation challenges to build back--even a fraction of--the forests we lose from wildfires every year. That's why we set out to build a model to make reforestation scaleable, which requires expanding the supply chain systems and financial flywheels behind them. That is the mission: make reforestation scalable to mitigate the worst effects of climate change.
DroneSeed HQ: Ballard Brewery District, Seattle, WA
Silvaseed HQ: Roy, WA
Team Size: ~100
Leadership Team: Grant Canary (CEO), Ben Reilly (CTO), John Hall (VP Ops & Finance), Cassie Meigs (Director of Account Management), Matthew Aghai (Senior Director of Bio R&D), Arnoud de Villegas (Senior Director of Business Development), Katherine Wong-Velasco (Director of Talent Acquisition) and Mary Caroline Pruitt (Senior Director of Marketing & Communications)
Notable Investors: Marc Tarpenning co-founder Tesla, Tobi Lutke CEO Shopify, Alexis Ohanian co-founder Reddit, Marc Benioff, Court Lorenzini 1st CEO DocuSign
Revenue: Data will be shared with qualified candidates
Clients: 3 of 5 largest timber companies, Non-profits such as The Nature Conservancy, Tribal Nations, state and federal agencies, small family forests
What you'll be doing:
- Ensure a steady stream of data is flowing from project sites, experimental field sites and our greenhouses to the science team.
- Establish monitoring protocols for all active project sites and actively assess their biological status with respect to DroneSeed operations.
- Reinforce the need for data by coordinating and implementing experiments far and wide (including the Pacific Northwest, New Zealand, and elsewhere), and ensuring timely and thorough monitoring of these multiple project sites for the duration of a project.
- Act as a key team member responsible for project reporting, record keeping, and project site (stakeholder) communications, and be a critical contributor to the prototyping process.
- Support the seed collection workshops at our nursery operations. Can you climb trees?
- In the final year of bachelor’s degree in biology, ecology, forestry, plant or environmental science.
- 1+ years independent biological field research under the direction of a research program.
- Experience in reading scientific papers and technical writing.
- Experimental design familiarity, data collection, data reporting, and data processing.
- Experience in laboratory, greenhouse, or mesocosm biological data collection with plants.
- Attention to detail and not dissuaded by repetitive tasks and record keeping.
- Ability to learn, or familiarity with, plants and seeds.
- Ability to travel for site visits, field work, or other team events. This will include regular travel to our nursery in Roy, WA.
- Experience with data processing and fundamental principles of statistical analysis.
A plus if you have:
- Familiarity with seed and plant propagation strategies.
- Experience with scientific writing, technical reports, or giving scientific presentations.
- Completed degree program.
Benefits of working at DroneSeed: We’re focused on our mission and making a positive impact on the environment. Leadership & Board: 7 of 8 leadership identify as either non-male, LGBTQ+, person of color, minority, immigrant, or veteran. Three of seven board members identify as female or a person of color. These aspects (and our hiring process) are what have led us to have an awesome office culture and highly collaborative team.
Other Information: Candidates must be eligible to work at our DroneSeed offices in Ballard, Seattle, as well as at Silvaseed Nursery HQ in Roy, WA.