Solar Powered Barges Scoop Up 50 Tons of Plastic Daily

The ‘Interceptor” stops ocean plastic at its source, rivers

The teenage Dutch inventor behind the Ocean Cleanup has invented a solar-powered barge to intercept plastic pollution before it reaches the ocean.

The “Interceptor” is a floating robot the size of a large houseboat that skims plastic waste off the surface of the river as it flows downstream.

It’s capable of collecting 50 tons of plastic rubbish per day. The plastic is directed up the mouth of the barge, collected in dumpsters, then sent to recycling facilities.

The nonprofit The Ocean Cleanup, has been quietly developing the system over the last four years, while it continued to work on its main project—device that captures plastic trash already in the ocean.

A huge chunk of ocean plastic (2 million tons a year) enters  the sea through rivers.

Around 1% of the world’s rivers are responsible for the majority of the trash entering the ocean, and most of those are in Asia, near cities with inadequate recycling infrastructure.

Ultimately, “we need to move all the way upstream and reduce consumption and production of single-use, unnecessary plastics, and we need to better collect and recycle plastics and ensure materials are getting back into the supply chain for a circular economy,” Nick Mallos of The Ocean Conservancy tells Fast Company.

Source – ReturnToNow