PINE KNOLL SHORES — As environmental changes that threaten natural ecosystems mount in coastal communities, two innovative Carteret County men have created a product they hope can be used to create and restore estuarine habitats and help stop shoreline erosion.

Dr. Niels Lindquist, a researcher with the UNC Institute of Marine Science, and David “Clammerhead” Cessna, a lifelong commercial fisherman, are co-founders of Sandbar Oyster Co., which produces a biodegradable, cement-based substrate to grow oysters. The company was formed in 2016, but the partnership between scientist and fisherman began in 2009, when Dr. Lindquist said he was tapped by N.C. Sea Grant to research ways to restore oyster populations in North Carolina.

Dr. Lindquist recruited the help of Mr. Cessna, whose family have been…

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