Updates

Research

Whales likely impacted by Great Pacific Garbage Patch

A scientific note we published on April 09, 2019 reports the records of whales within the world’s largest accumulation of floating ocean plastic: the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Over the past few weeks, two whales beached with large amounts of plastic in their stomachs making news headlines, one in the Phillippines and the other...

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Oceanography, Research

Where Mismanaged Plastic Waste is Generated and Possible Paths of Change

As we kick off 2019, the engineering team is working towards solutions to the challenges we face with System 001, while the research team remains focused on the study of oceanic plastic pollution. We believe that it is essential to understand the problem of ocean plastic pollution if we are to effectively solve it. Fortunately, our...

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Research, Oceanography

Chasing Plastics: How to Close the Ocean Plastic Mass Balance

At The Ocean Cleanup we believe that you cannot solve a problem if you do not fully understand it. For this reason, we have put extensive efforts into fundamental plastic pollution research since the very beginning to help guide us to the best set of solutions. This work has continued in parallel to the development and deployment of our...

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Research

Remote Sensing of Ocean Plastics

Today, our results on the analysis of hyperspectral imagery collected during our 2016 Aerial Expedition above the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP) were published in the scientific journal Environmental Science & Technology, authored by Shungudzemwoyo Garaba* et al. Earlier this year we presented our results of several...

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Oceanography, Research, General

The Exponential Increase of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

After three years of research including two field expeditions, extensive laboratory experiments and data analyses, we are thrilled to finally release the results of our study on the infamous Great Pacific Garbage Patch or GPGP. Our peer-reviewed manuscript published today in the journal Scientific Reports summarizes the methodology that...

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Oceanography, Research

How Ocean Plastics Turn into a Dangerous Meal

Our research team has just published a new article in the journal Environmental Science and Technology revealing that plastics within the Great Pacific Garbage Patch are loaded with pollutants at levels that may be high enough to harm organisms ingesting them. This is particularly concerning when considering the high plastic exposure we...

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Research, Oceanography

Investigating Plastic Detection from Space

After almost 3 years of work, The Ocean Cleanup research team has recently submitted its comprehensive results about plastic pollution in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. More than 1.2 million pieces of plastic have been collected, counted, sorted, characterised and categorised. Terabytes of aerial images and data have been...

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Team, Research

Dr. Richard Spinrad Joins The Ocean Cleanup’s Scientific Advisory Board

The Ocean Cleanup is honored to welcome former NOAA Chief Scientist Dr. Richard (Rick) Spinrad as the newest member of our Scientific Advisory Board (SAB). In his advisory role, Dr. Spinrad will focus on challenging our work and designs based on his extensive experience in oceanography and the maritime technology field. His role will...

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Research

Quantifying global plastic inputs from rivers into oceans

Quantifying plastic pollution in the world’s ocean requires a good understanding of sources. It is commonly accepted that most plastic found in or near the marine environment is coming from land-based sources. Rivers particularly may play an important role in transporting mismanaged plastic waste from land into the ocean. Our...

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Research

Understanding the rising speed of plastic

The Ocean Cleanup Research Team continues to analyze data from our expeditions, including our Mega Expedition which provided us with the largest sample of ocean plastic ever collected (1.1 million particles weighing approximately one ton). One of the many experiments conducted was measuring the rising speed of plastic...

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