Tagged: plastic

The Seabin: vacuum cleaner for the oceans

The ocean washes tonnes of plastic ashore every year (photo: Seabin project)

I am currently enjoying my holidays in Estepona in the South of Spain. Besides an appealing beach and promenade, this picturesque town on the Mediterranean coast is home to a sports and fishing port. It all looks Instagram-proof, but upon closer inspection, one cannot neglect the amounts of trash floating in the harbor. At the pier, a seagull on the hunt for food tries to crack open a beer can washed ashore. Spots of oil form a thin layer on the water here and there. Not a pretty sight.

Estepona is not alone, around the world marinas have to deal with litter for which humans are to blame. They are the symptom of a much larger problem that most of us never get to see: the pollution of our planet’s oceans on a massive scale. Luckily, two Australian surfers have come to rescue. The result is the Seabin, an invention that holds the middle between a waste bin and vacuum cleaner. But for the oceans, mind you.

The founders of Seabin, with the device before it is installed in the water (photo: Seabin project)

(more…)

More

Photo of the week: Impossible is nothing, dixit Adidas

The famous Boyan Slat has bold ideas about collecting all the plastic in the oceans, but he never revealed what he plans to do with this pile of garbage. Adidas and Parley for the Oceans, an organization that aims to end pollution of the world’s oceans, have came up with something that just might be (part of) the solution. On their General Assembly in New York, Adidas presented a shoe made out of plastics and gillnets recovered from the sea. Those were collected by Sea Sheperd Conservation Society during a campaign against illegal poaching at the African West-Coast.

Adidas will not sell the shoes, but rather wanted to show what is possible with recycled materials from the oceans “when we all put our heads together”, as a spokesman told the Huffington post. Which doesn’t mean it stops here. Next year, shoes partially made out of recycled materials can be found in stores. A good step forward, literally.

 

Adidas presented a shoe made of recovered plastic and gillnets from the oceans (photo: Adidas)

Adidas presented a shoe made of recovered plastic and gillnets from the oceans (photo: Adidas)

Sources

TheHuffintonPost

Photo by epSos.de

More

Photo of the Week: from soda bottle to road pavement

In Australia they’re thinking about using printer toner residues into more sustainable asphalt (see this earlier post), in the Netherlands they want to take it even further. Much further. On the 15th of July, the city council of Rotterdam announced a pilot project together with VolkerWessels to investigate the feasaility of recycled plastic roads. That plastic soda botlle you just threw away is indeed suited for recycling purposes other than a winter fleece.

Recycled plastic roads would offer modular road construction and roads could be laid out much quicker. In addition, plastics are corrosion prone and the roads are estimated to last at least three times longer than asphalt which deteriorates over time due to cold temperatures and salt in winter and high temperatures in summer. The right mix of plastics on the other hand can easily handle temperatures between -30°C and 80°C. The roads would be suited to build in other elements, such as sensors and photovoltaic cells. Altough it’s still a concept on paper, the city of Rotterdam is eager to work together with VolkerWessels to see whether this idea could become reality.

Recycled soda bottles could soon become a lightweight and durable road pavement (photo: VolkerWessel)

Recycled soda bottles could soon become a lightweight and durable road pavement (photo: VolkerWessel)

Sources

VolkerWessels
ScienceAlert

More