Who’d like to start up the week with a glimmer of ocean hope?
The Ocean Cleanup project, headed by 24-year-old Dutch inventor Boyan Slat, has spent the last 5 years designing a U-shaped floating trawl to scour the sea for floating bits of plastic. The 600-meter long floater and attached skirt are designed to work passively with natural elements like currents and wind to follow the plastic’s path and trap it. The skirt creates a downward flow where fish and other wildlife can safely pass underneath it.
How It Works:
This first model, named System 001, was deployed from the San Francisco Bay in September. It took only 5 days to travel 350 nautical miles for a last round of tests before making the long trip to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch another 1,000 nautical miles away. System 001 has made the voyage safely and has started collection! Its progress will be extensively monitored and studied to make sure the cleanup is going smoothly along the way.
Are we in the clear now?
Does this mean that we can breathe a sigh of relief and go back to our bags of single-serve potato chips and mini water bottles? Absolutely not! While we can all relish in this hopeful news, we must continue to help from our end. Check out our recent post to learn about items you can easily stop bringing onboard today.