The nonprofit The Ocean Cleanup just launched a giant floating plastic trap, which they hope will cut the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in half in 5 years
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a swirling vortex of 90,000 tons of floating plastic, is now twice the size of Texas.
The non-profit The Ocean Cleanup hopes to cut the garbage patch in half in 5 years, and by 90 percent by 2040.
The organization has raised $35 million in crowdfunding to build high-tech floating nets, 2000 feet wide and 10 feet deep, which will skim the pacific ocean for plastic while allowing fish to swim underneath.
The first float was deployed from the San Francisco Bay Sept. 8.
“You might liken it to one of those self-directing pool cleaners, on a larger scale, or a big Roomba cleaning robot,” reports Forbes magazine.
The design was created by 16-year-old Dutch entrepreneur Boyan Slat five years ago:
To rid the ocean of plastic entirely, Slat says they’ll need 60 such flotation devices, which will cost around 5 million dollars each.
The plastic collected from each float will be recycled into products to fund future floats in other parts of the world.
Slat says the organization is in a hurry to collect large pieces of plastic debris before it degrades into harder to collect microplastics.