Eco Wave Power. Link to the audio podcast: https://yourpositiveimprint.com/episodes/inna-braverman-tales-of-discovery-eco-wave-power/
Tales of Discovery with Inna Braverman. Eco Wave Power
Tales of Discovery. Female entrepreneur Inna Braverman almost died as an infant due to the pollution from the Chernobyl explosion. Today she lives her life changing the world for a better future. Inna shares her company’s innovative technology for producing green electricity using ocean waves. As CEO, Inna empowers women and men world wide through Ted Talks and other stages. Eco Wave Power. Inna Braverman is changing the world one wave at time.
Transcript available for this episode below.
Catherine: 00:16 Hello, this is Catherine. Your host of the podcast, Your Positive Imprint, the variety show featuring people all over the world whose positive achievements inspire positive actions and thought music by the talented Chris, Nole check out his music and learn more about chrisnole.com, C H R I S N O L E.com. You can also listen to his music on Spotify and Pandora. Well, a quick update regarding past guest, 15 year old activist, Sydney Steenland of the Sea Monkey Project continues cleanup in the seas and beaches all over Southeast Asia. They're making totally rad and awesome snazzy up cycled items such as backpacks, tote bags, and hit bags. Bags from pollution that's been removed and reused from upcycled items, such as boat sails, kite sails, fishing nets, rope seatbelts, their tagline "Fairwinds and plastic-free seas." Visit seamonkeyproject.com. You can also listen to episode 82. "Plastic Free Seas The Sea Monkey Project" to learn more about their phenomenal global work . Well follow me on Facebook and Instagram. Your positive imprint. Connect with me on LinkedIn. Visit my website, yourpositiveimprint.com. You can also subscribe and follow my show from your favorite podcast platform, such as Apple podcast, Google podcast, iHeart radio, Spotify, Stitcher, or of course simply your favorite podcast platform. Don't forget to hit those five stars. And remember, this is a free podcast, your positive imprint. What's your P.I.?
Catherine: 02:30 Eco wave power. What is this? Well, it's changing our world as we speak, basically it is a smart and cost efficient technology for turning ocean and sea waves into green electricity, eco wave power generates clean energy from the ocean and their hard work and amazing positive imprints won them. The international recognition as a recipient of the United nations momentum for change global climate action award. Furthermore, my guest today is the founder and CEO of this amazing company, eco wave power, Inna Braverman impact, sustainable energy policies, and is accelerating the transition to renewable energy. She is a phenomenal global positive imprint for women, entrepreneurs, environmentalists, and well, a positive imprint for our planet. Ina was born in the Ukraine and has a story to tell which for me is a connection to some of the work that I have done in the past regarding the Ukraine. And I am just so excited to have ina Braverman here on the show. Ina, welcome to your positive imprint.
Inna Braverman: 03:57 Thank you very much. I'm very glad to be here.
Catherine: 03:59 Oh, I am. I'm very excited. You have such an extensive background of tales and, and discovery, which is so exciting and I I'm anxious to have you share so much. I'd like, first of all, again, to welcome you to the show and I think you are over in Israel right now.
Inna Braverman: 04:21 Yes, I am. Televiev.
Catherine: 04:24 The sound is coming in a little bit blurred, but I think it'll be, it'll be good. It'll be okay. I'd like to kind of go back to your birth place and kind of start there in the Ukraine because you have an amazing story to tell of your life starting out.
Inna Braverman: 04:44 Yes. So I was born in the Ukraine in a small city in Ukraine in 1996, and then two weeks after I was born, the Chernobyl nuclear reactor exploded, which was the worst in history, nuclear disaster in terms of cost and casualties. And then there were many people that were hurt due to this explosion. Even I saw, I started at 95% of the newborn babies in Belarus and were born with different types of health issues and problems because of the explosion. And I was one of the babies that was impacted by the negative effects of such explosion. And I guess that it was due to the pollution in the air. And I got the respiratory illness, stopped breathing and then clinical death. And luckily my mother and nurse, she approached my crib one time and she saw that I was completely pale and not breathing and no pulse.
Inna Braverman: 05:48 And then of course she was a nurse. She was able to give me a mouth to mouth resuscitation in time and actually saved my life. I was a lucky baby, but many children and adults were not as lucky. And then there were very negative. There was very negative impacts to the Chernobyl explosion. And I think that growing up with such a background story is really what instilled in me, the motivation to, you know, give something back, give something good to the world, uh, by, uh, developing or helping the development of a renewable energy technology wave energy, which is a huge renewable energy source and had to replace some of the more dangerous energy generation technologies.
Catherine: 06:41 So, you know, what a, what an experience for your mom, first of all, to have to go through, to watch her baby, uh, stop breathing after such an horrific explosion. And I commend you for wanting all of your life to give back to a community to a world that that provides for you and the community. Well, the world global community, obviously thanks you because this is something that is an incredible, incredible engineering feat that you have started here. And I just want to mention my connection with the Ukraine and Chernobyl. So I sat on the board here in United States of an organization called Children of Chernobyl and what we did, we brought over children who were involved in close proximity like yourself, of, of the Chernobyl explosion. And we brought them in a couple of years after, and the government worked with us, or I don't know about the government, but the other organizations in Chernobyl worked with us to identify kids who might have a cancer. And so we brought them over here to take all sorts of MRIs and CT scans and whatnot so that we could see if they had cancer due to the explosion. And then they would get treatment here in United States. So that was a way that our country, at least will, through a nonprofit, could help the children of Chernobyl because it was kind of a tight secret there, which is also part of your story is that Sweden was one that discovered what was happening there and let the world know.
Inna Braverman: 08:20 It's amazing that you're passionate about, you know, doing good things because I'm sure that the work that you did with the Ukrainian children and have significantly contributed to their lives in a positive way. And the work that you're doing, as I said, the work that you're doing with this podcast also is very admirable. And then it sounds like, you know, you're a very caring compassionate person and the great to see people like this. That's why, that's why I think if it was like, eh, in July, 2019, our company became the first Israeli company to ever INAUDIBLE Stockholm in Sweden and for me, and it was a part of my IPO speech. (IPO=Initial Public Offering in Sweden.) That was a very, very touching moment because it's kind of the, you, I need Sweden once again. Uh, the first time it was when they actually notified the world about the explosion and by doing so actually saved many lives. And then also, uh, the Swedish people are the majority of the investors that invested in the IPO. And I get the chance to kind of maybe give back by bringing there, an innovative wave energy technology is a very nice, eh, kind of closure for me.
Catherine: 09:42 Oh, absolutely. And how, what a life long though, connection with those events and your turn of, of changing what we have going for the future here in, for planet earth. And now from your experience in Ukraine, you moved on and obviously you did some schooling to prepare you for, for this phenomenal entrepreneurship and engineering future. So what was, what was your schooling?
Inna Braverman: 10:15 So actually I don't come from this background. Uh, my family is very engineering oriented. My father is an engineer and my grandfather used to be the main engineer of the town, where we lived in Ukraine, but I chose to pursue a different let's call it studying path and I actually studied political science and English language and literature in Haifa university in Israel. And then I decided to go into studying political sciences because obviously as a child growing up with such a strong background story, I had the desire to do something good, you know, to somehow positively impact the world. And I thought growing up, I thought the best way to do it is for politics because the good political leaders good political leaders. Of course they can influence the world, their communities, their countries for the best. And then when I finished, unfortunately, there was like, I always say there was no line up of politicians that were waiting to hire somebody that does finish their studies, so I started the look for a job because you're already 20 something years old.
Inna Braverman: 11:26 When you finished university, we need to start, you know, doing something with your life. And the first job that I found the ad in the internet was an English, Hebrew translator in a renewable energy company. And then I think that's really open for me understanding about the importance of renewable energy and the, the most important thing for me was understanding that although solar and solar and wind, the industries are already packed with competition. There is many, many companies already that are doing a great job in commercializing solar and wind. The wave energy sector was always used as like super high potential sector, but it struggled to commercialize. So there were a lot of huge companies with many employees and financial resources and human resources and all types of available resources, but they were not able to commercialize wave energy technology. And me being very young just 24 years old, when I actually cofounded Eco Wave Power, I thought to myself, you know, we call it the [inaudible]. I said, okay, all these people have this money, like connections, human resources, any type of resources that you need, they can't do it, but maybe I will be able to do it. And then on that note, uh, David and I established the Eco Wave Power.
Catherine: 12:57 Well, that is an incredible story and such a, a neat path in getting there with your experiences with renewable energy companies. And of course your schooling in polisci, as we say here, but political science, which is my area, I was political science and communications, which brought me to environmental lobbying for the environment and wildlife, which is interesting in itself. But so now you have this phenomenal, absolutely phenomenal organization. Let's just have you start with the, uh, the ground and the building of this company and how you came upon some of these, uh, advanced and innovative developments.
Inna Braverman: 13:40 Um, so, uh, basically, uh, I started, I got really interested as I said, the wave energy fields, because I saw that there's kind of a race in the world and all the companies are trying to develop a commercially viable technology with no success. I started researching what it is that made them fail or not succeed in the path that they have taken. And then David, my business partner on the other side of the world, he's a serial entrepreneur. And then one of his real estate investments was a surf camp in Panama. So he also was seeing the power of the waves for surfers that were coming to the surf hotel. And they're thinking, wow, like there must be something better that can be done through the power of the waves and other than surfing, other than sports. And he also started researching the fee people he's got his own ideas.
Inna Braverman: 14:34 I got my own ideas in Israel and we actually met completely accidentally in a social event. And he told me about these ideas and I told him about mine. And it was quite rare to find somebody from a completely different part of the world, having the same passion and having the same kind of desires regarding wave energy as you do. And on that note we, we decided on the establishment of Eco Wave Power, both of us are not engineers. Um, so we definitely had the, to transform our ideas from the theoretical to the practical sphere. So I went back to Ukraine to the same city where I was born and actually held the competition between 300 engineers and chose a team of five that could really turn our idea from a theoretical concept to a practical idea. What we understood, why our technology really different from what existed in the market and still exist in the market is the fact that 99% of the competitors in a wave energy have chose to install offshore. Offhosre means four or five kilometers into the sea and when you're that far into the sea you face four big difficulties.
Inna Braverman: 15:47 1. One of them is the price of the system. We need ships. We need divers, you need underwater mooring and underwater cables. And this is all of course, very expensive and complicated for operation maintenance and construction. 2. Second of all, the reliability of offshore systems was quite low because in the off shore, you get waves of 20 meters and even higher it's like tsunami waves. And then unfortunately, no man made station or equipment can survive the loads caused by such a wave Heights. So many of the previous generational way offer wave energy equipment have broken down after a few days or a few months of operation. 3. Insurance companies were afraid to insure it because of the high prices and the low reliability, which was not a good thing for financing. 4. And then the environmentalists, which were supposed to be the greatest proponents of wave energy, we're actually objecting it because it's created a new presence on the ocean floor, which disturbed the Marine environment and changed the ecological balance.
Inna Braverman: 16:43 So we understood that in order to commercialize any type of wave energy technology, we need to first address those four challenges, which we did 1. by changing completely the location of the equipment. We installed our floaters on existing, manmade structures, such as piers, jetties, breakwaters, and other type of a manmade structures. Most of our system is located on land. All the conversion units the expensive parts, the hydraulic and electrical parts are all on land, just like regular power station. 2. And then when the waves are too high for the system to handle, the floaters automatically lift above the water level, and they stay in the upward position until the storm passes. And when the storm passes, they slowly commence operation and, and safely commence operation. So basically by doing this change, we were able to provide both reliability to the system, prevent breakage. We were able to take care of the problem of very high prices of the offshore systems by not putting it offshore and really using a lot of off the shelf standard conventional equipment.
Inna Braverman: 17:49 Uh, it also made of course, the operation and the maintenance and the service of the station, much simpler. 3. Once we decrease the price of provided reliability, we didn't have any problem with getting the insurance from reputable insurance companies, even against storms. 4. And the environmentalist are the environmentalist are 100% supportive of the technology because we create zero new presence on the ocean floor. We don't even connect to the ocean floor. We only connect to the manmade structures, which are already not the natural, not natural structures. There's something that is made from cement or from stone that is created by, you know, mankind and these breakwaters as the, you know, for themselves, they're already harmful for the environment because the cities and the ports, they build these breakwaters because they need to protect the coastal communities and the fjords from storms, but it's not natural structure. So they do cause different type of, um, natural kind of negative effects. And we're taking something that, you know, has a negative effect on the environment is breakwaters and piers and jetty and we turned it into a source of clean electricity. So at least by doing so, we both kind of mitigate the influence of that Breakwater and also create something good from it,
Catherine: 19:22 Producing green electricity you're going to have to have these ginormous structures, which you don't, and it's absolutely innovative the way you've done this with the floaters. And so now the electricity, how many people are you able to serve now worldwide with green electricity?
Inna Braverman: 19:47 So basically, eh, the system, the good thing about the system as you correctly said, is that it is very simple. If you think about it, the smart technology I, explain a little bit how it works. So as I said, with the Dutch floaters different shapes and sizes and the height of floaters for every location of implementation, because we want to have ideal production. So we customize our floater and the floaters are going up and down with the movement of the weight and they're pressing the hydro cylinder, which transmits biodegradable fluid into land located accumulators. And this fluid is creating pressure in the accumulators between 60 bars to about 160 bars. It depends in which location we're working, the higher, the way, the higher, the pressure and the pressure is used to turn the hydro motor, which is turning the generator, which is transmitting the electricity to the grid via inverter. And the whole system is controlled by a smart automation system that enables the smooth operations, smooth electricity supply into the grid.
Inna Braverman: 20:49 Oh, how much energy we can provide. It really depends on the length of the Breakwater or structure that we have in our possession. So let's say on a good, in a good side where you have a standard size of a Breakwater of around three and a half kilometers, we can install about 50 megawatts, which are around, let's say around 36,000 to 50,000 households, which is quite amazing because the structure is it's already there. It's not used for anything. And we turned it into electricity. Not only that, another advantage for the communities that they install such a project is that it is also creating a new industry in the country, city, Island, or location where we doing it, it's creating new employment opportunities. So except only having the clean electricity aspect as a positive aspect, you also have the community involvement, the creation of employment opportunities, the industry, which is also an additional benefit.
Inna Braverman: 22:02 My personal goal and desire is to have such technology installed on every breakwater pier, jetty, or any other type of Marine structure that is existed existence out there in the world. And the, you know, turn all these unused structures into a source of electricity. Clean electricity is something that is amazing in my eyes. So I would really like to see it expand and spread to wherever possible to developing countries, whereas developed and also developed countries to really see a global spread of, of the technology, because it's really a win, win solution. And for the world and for the actual location that implements the technology, I think that we will be in a good spot technology-wise when also there will be some sort of maybe policymaking or legislation that will make it obligatory for every new breakwater, pier or Marine structure that is being built around the world to already during the construction phase, to incorporate a method for wave energy production from the structure, because then it will even make our implementation process smoother and easier.
Inna Braverman: 23:15 And we won't have to do any changes to the structure. We won't have to invest as much money in the installation We will just be already incorporated from the planning and design phase, which will be better for us better for the client that is buying the power station or buying the electricity and better for everybody. So I really think that, um, that the, the way we move at a certain place to kind of natural incorporation of this technology into any type of structure, which will be an amazing growth opportunity for the company. And, and another thing that I would like to see is that right now, as you said, wave energy, because it's so rare, it's a new type of technology. It's a new type of harvesting of renewable energy. It's considered very unique, it's considered very special. And I think that we will be in a good spot when it's no longer considered special.
Inna Braverman: 24:14 You know, when you can see everywhere and in every port, in every city on every Island. And then people will get used to seeing these exactly like with solar and with wind, you know, the first solar and wind energy technology. People. We used to take I remember many years ago, photos next to the windmilll because it was something very innovative and we are kind of right now in the same stage and with wave energy. And I really think that's a true sample that will prove that the technology is commercialized and is widely distributed is when people will stop thinking it's special, they will say, wow, it's completely normal wave energy in my town or in my country. Then that would be an amazing progress for the industry.
Catherine: 24:55 Oh, absolutely. And not just the industry, but as you said for our mother earth, of course. Do you collect data as far as carbon footprints and so that you have things to show to climate change scientists or ocean, some of the oceanographers, do you work with them?
Inna Braverman: 25:18 Of course, uh, we collect that data and each of our power station comes with an information system that among the technical features that it is showing, it will be also showing the emissions that are saved due to the clean energy production that we're doing with the power with the wave. So it's definitely an important feature for us. And it's important feature for our clients to be aware of, to see that by producing some of their power, all the power from the waves they're doing, good to the environment and their saving, green houses gas emissions, and we are, of course, working very closely with the oceanographers and the companies that provide the different types of Marine services and including, uh, for feasibility studies, for example, when we're examining a new site for installation, and we worked with companies such as Met Ocean to provide us how many kilometers of coastline, in each specific location. So they're definitely a big part of our journey.
Catherine: 26:28 Yeah. So this is just so spectacular. And I want to just mention this huge award, because there were over 600 entries around the world who entered for the United Nations Momentum for Change Global Climate Action award and your company, your innovative technology, won and you were recognized and you were one of the recipients of the award. And so how, what, what was United Nations looking for and how has that award moved you forward?
Inna Braverman: 27:03 And so I think the United Nations, were looking for unique, innovative technologies that can really impact the world on a large scale. And I think definitely eco wave power wave energy technology, fits the definition. And another thing that I think that was important to the United Nations is to see female representation in the energy business, because unfortunately, most women going to pursue STEM sector or science, technology, engineering, mathematics. We see more males in this type of sector. And then the reason also that the category under which I won this United Nation award was under "women for impacting the world in a quality way. So I think it's a combination of both really the United Nation wants to promote gender equality, which is a very, very important entity. And another thing that they want to promote is implementation of new, renewable energy sources, which can help the world mitigate the climate change. And for me, this recognition was amazing because of course the United Nations is a very known and well respected organization. And when they give such a, you know, such an incredible recognition, that's amazing on a personal level and on the company level.
Catherine: 28:31 Yeah, absolutely. And so now that, you know, you brought up gender equality, which is obviously something extremely important in today's world. Well, it should be important all the time, but you are of course, a female entrepreneur, but you have been inspiring women with your talks, workshops, your thoughts, your actions. You are global. What are some of the inspiring words you can provide to women? Not just women entrepreneurs, but female environmentalists, female activists around the world.
Inna Braverman: 29:08 So, first of all, like you said, female empowerment, female entrepreneurship, female inclusion is something that is very important to me on a personal level, because I remember how when I was 24 and I opened the company, I used to walk into conference room and the, everybody were asking me for espresso instead of into, you know, the explanation about the technology, because they were that sure that if there's a woman in the room it's probably somebody's assistant. So I understand that it's not something that was.... It didn't only happen to me. I'm sure it's happened to many, many other women in different ways and forms all over the world. And whereas some women they're able to say, you know, to swallow their pride and say, okay, they don't take me seriously, but I'll still go ahead and pitch my idea. I can also imagine that many women would feel very like would lose their confidence if something like this happened, or outnumbered because mostly there are no other women in the room and there sometimes the only woman in the room, so you can give it like, you know, look to someone for support.
Inna Braverman: 30:25 And so, so I really think that that's something that needs to change, especially given the fact that according to the United Nations the population that is mostly hurt by the impacts of climate change is women and children. So we are the ones that have been hurt the most, but we don't have a seat at the table at the negotiation table. And then something that is very, very sad, and really need to change. And as to to female activists. And I would say that they're doing a great job and to keep their voices strong, not to give up in every aspect of their ways in every aspect of their life and especially in their renewable energy goals, because this is something that is important for us and for our children and for our children's children, the way that we leave the world for them, we leave them in the way that they're going to leave. So I really would like to just like encourage them and tell them not to give up. And even if something negative happens or somebody doesn't take it seriously, they should still pursue their passion and their dreams.
Catherine: 31:43 Oh, that is wonderful. Awesome. You know, when you go and read on eco wave power, it is just an incredible, not, not just technology, but you took such care in making sure that, of course keeping costs down. That's important for being able to get investors, and insurance, but you also took such care in making sure that the environment is protected and that wildlife is still being preserved because those are important issues too. Your empowerment is such a positive imprint globally. And so what else did you want to share about eco wave power?
Inna Braverman: 32:25 I think you did a very good, a research job, so it pretty much covered my personal life, my uh, you know, my passion for renewable energy and for wave energy and we covered those so, you know, my view on reinforcing the women, especially women in business and female entrepreneurs. So I do think that your questions kind of covered most of the subjects. And maybe I can just add that on a more technical level why wave energy, such important resource is the fact that that according to the World Energy Council wave energy can produce twice the amount of electricity that the world produces now. And that's from one single renewable energy source. So imagine what could happen, what positive impact we could have if we would install a wave energy in every suitable country and city in the world.
Catherine: 33:19 Absolutely. Absolutely. I agree. Inna Braverman. You're so wonderful. And thank you so much for sharing your positive imprints here on the show and all of this wonderful technology with regard to eco wave power. And I just appreciate you so much.
Inna Braverman: 33:39 And then I would like to thank you, and not only for this interview and giving me the space but also thank you and people like you that are doing podcasts or, or, you know, writing articles or exposing the technology on TV, because you're really helping to create awareness for these type of technologies and to different types of innovation, which also makes a very significant positive change.
Catherine: 34:08 Absolutely. So Inna, how can people learn more about the company or if there are investors out there, any information that you can provide.
Inna Braverman: 34:19 So people are more than welcome to visit our website at ecowavepower.com, they're also more than welcome to send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. And we will be glad to provide explanations, more details about the technology and other interesting and relevant information.
Catherine: 34:42 Wonderful. Well, thank you for that. Well, Inna Braverman, you are changing and I love this on your website, but you are changing the world one wave at a time. Inna Braverman. Thank you so much for being here on your positive imprint. Your Positive Imprint. What's YOUR P.I.?