Developing technologies to extract, prevent and intercept plastic pollution.

The Problem

The plastic pollution problem

  • Millions of tons of plastic have entered the oceans (UNEP 2005)
  • Plastic concentrates in five rotating currents, called gyres (Maximenko et al., 2012)
  • In these gyres there is on average six times more plastic than zooplankton by dry weight (Moore et al., 2001) 

READ MORE →

The Solution

The ultimate solution would be to close the tap, and prevent the plastic from reaching the ocean in the first place.

However, this will not be a solution for the plastics already trapped in the currents of the gyres. The Ocean Cleanup aims to develop world’s first feasible approach to gyre remediation, by using the currents to our advantage.

Extraction

The Ocean Cleanup Array theoretically enables us to efficiently clean up a gyre in just five years, using the natural currents to our advantage. This passive approach could simultaneously prevent by-catch and emissions, and it enables us to extract the smaller particles. We are currently performing a study on the concept’s feasibility and financial viability, which will be published in the second quarter of 2014.

READ MORE →

Prevention

Prevention is an essential part of stopping plastic pollution, but will require radical changes in all levels of society.
The Ocean Cleanup aims to assist with these efforts by stressing its importance, and by raising awareness about the problem and its solutions. Obviously, prevention is something we are all responsible for.

 

Interception

In the second phase of the project, The Ocean Cleanup plans to develop spin-offs of our passive collection technology for implementation in river deltas and other waterways that transport plastic to the oceans. This could provide a rapid reduction of the influx of new plastics into the oceans.

 

About Us

19-year-old Boyan Slat combines environmentalism, entrepreneurism and technology to tackle global issues of sustainability.

While diving in Greece, he became frustrated when coming across more plastic bags than fish, and wondered: "why can't we clean this up?"

Working to prove the feasibility of his concept, Boyan currently leads a team of approximately 80 people.

READ MORE →

Florian Dirkse
General manager

Jan de Sonneville
Lead engineer

Norbert Fraunholcz
Processing and Recycling Coordinator

Leonid Pavlov
CFD & CM Coordinator

Nicholas P. Katsepontes
Maritime & Environmental Law Coordinator

Julia Reisser
Lead Oceanographer

Blog

30

Mar

The Ocean Cleanup T-Shirt Design Contest

In preparation of a merchandise line, we are now looking for great designs to print on both...

READ MORE →

24

Mar

Testing with a boom segment in the Azores

We just returned from the Azores, where we deployed a 40 m-long boom segment. One of the objectives...

READ MORE →

16

Mar

Fluid dynamics simulations in the Azores

We're on Pico (the Azores), where in the next few days we'll be deploying a 40m-long testing rig,...

READ MORE →

12

Mar

Volunteering or internship opportunities

The Ocean Cleanup is currently looking for people in the following disciplines:

READ MORE →

Support Us

Any donations to help advance our project are highly appreciated and can be made through our website here.

READ MORE →

To accelerate our development, we are open to collaborations with companies and institutes.

READ MORE →

Do you want to work in a team of volunteers with a passion for oceans that is working on the biggest environmental cleanup in history?

READ MORE →

Share