What started off as a school project has now become a full-blown non-profit with a green impact. For the 25-year-old Dutch creator, the mission is clear: Clean up the worlds 1000 largest rivers from plastic before any of it reaches the oceans.
The Traveling Plastic
Much of the plastic in the sea comes to be there via a river, but Boyan Slat’s new technology aims to stop this plastic before it reaches the sea.
The non-profit organisation, called The Ocean Cleanup, has launched the electric purifier "Interceptor", which they claim can collect up to 100 000 kilos of garbage a day, while being entirely self-directed.
The machine can be placed on the river where the water flow causes most of the plastic to pass. Then a line is there to ensure that the plastic travels into the mouth of the machine.
Once it has met its physical limitations in collecting garbage, the machine then sends a text message to a local manager that it is ready for emptying. And so, the plastic never reaches the sea.
A Targeted Approach
According to The Ocean Cleanup's own studies, of the approximately 100 000 rivers in the world, 80 percent of all plastic that flows into the ocean stems from 1000 of them. These are the ones from which The Ocean Cleanup is aiming to stop the plastic flow.
Only a few of the 1000 rivers are in Europe, most of the waste comes from populous developing countries in East Asia.
No Time To Waste
Two of the machines have already been put into operation.
One in Jakarta and the other in the Selangor River off Kuala Lumpur.
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