Plastic Pollution


- Netherlands
  • Main problem:
    Plastic pollution
  • Subproblem:
    Destruction of habitats, Improvements of waste cycles
  • Consequence:
    Environmental pollution
  • Solution:
    Durable recycling of marine litter

What is the problem?
Plastic pollution starts in our streets, reaches our rivers and eventually ends up in our seas and oceans. 80% of all the plastic in the ocean comes from land. Every year 12.7 million tons of plastic end up in the ocean and only dissolves in 450 years.

What is at stake?

Plastic is made from chemicals sourced from fossil fuels, the primary cause of climate change. Plastic endangers wild life as marine animals get tangled in the plastic or die with a stomach full of plastic by ingesting it. Not only does it harm marine life. It also affects us. The aquatic species that ingest the plastic end up on our menu and just like that the chemicals enter our food chain.

How are we going to reverse this?

To prevent plastic from reaching our seas and oceans, CLEAR RIVERS developed an allinclusive approach to marine litter. CLEAR outlines the five elements of our all-inclusive approach to marine litter: Cleanups, Litter Traps, Education, Awareness, Recycling.

We installed passive devices produced from recycled plastic, called Litter Traps, along waterways in Rotterdam, Brussels, Borneo and Ambon to retrieve marine litter. With the power of the water and the wind only, the Litter Trap retrieves the plastic that comes on its way.

After the plastic is retrieved, it is used as a resourceful raw material. In this way, the plastic will not end up as waste again. New value is created by upcycling it into sustainable products such as the Litter Traps, furniture, building materials to improve living situations in developing countries, and a floating park. So far 5 Litter Traps, 140m2 of Recycled Park, 5 sofas, and several modular bricks are produced from the retrieved litter.

Litter that once was drifting in the river Maas in Rotterdam, is now floating in the shape of a Recycled Park. The Recycled Park is a flourishing 140 m2 floating platform, offering breeding ground and shelter for all kind of species. It is the proof that the plastic considered as waste, can actually be a resourceful raw material.

Enough about us now, let’s talk about the real hero: YOU. In the end we’re all in this together, so let’s combine our forces and tackle plastic pollution. We know that it may seem that you won’t make any impact individually, but don’t let that fool you, because every piece of plastic that doesn’t reach the sea is a step closer to victory. To point your inner hero into the right direction we offer education to all ages and the possibility to support our mission in plastic retrieval through clean ups and donations. Together for a plastic-free sea!

Photo Credits by: ©clearrivers

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