Sadly, plastic pollution in our waters considers to be a serious problem. Companies and startups are becoming more and more creative with tools and approaches to curb and collect pollution, saving both coral reefs and ocean wildlife. Specifically, The Seabin Project is one of the more promising startups that’s been ramping up production. Joining forces with other organizations like Mission Blue, co-founder and CEO Peter Ceglinski and his team are about to make their project mainstream.
The Seabin Project is a trash can affixed to a dock that has a large fiber catch bag, having the ability to collect plastic debris as water is pumped through the system. Limited power is used from the shore to push the water through. Late last year, Seabins could catch 3.3 pounds of plastic per day and hold up to 26.5 pounds at one time. Now, each Seabin is able to catch nearly four pounds of plastic per day according to six different pilot partners.
20 Seabins are currently operational around the world. With 2,000 units currently on order, their main priority is to get as many units out to marinas as possible. They’re also finding ways to make production more sustainable, such has limiting logistics by manufacturing locally and to use recycled plastics they find as the Seabin’s main components are made of plastic.
“Our goal is to be 100% recycled material, but it may take some time with product testing as your lose strength and quality with recycled plastics”, Ceglinski said. “The long term goal is to use the plastics we catch to create new Seabins.”
Ceglinski’s goals will be aided with additional funding and more partnerships being formed. They’ve recently partnered with Mission Blue, a global alliance that features over 200 ocean conservation groups like the Seabin Project. All of them have a goal to spread awareness and help restore our oceans.
“We were pleasantly surprised when we received the offer of a position in the MB [Sylvia Earle] Alliance,” Ceglinski said. “It’s a very proud moment for us as they are on a mentor level. We hope to include Mission Blue in our share program and we hope to learn a lot from them especially in regards to ocean conservation.”
The Seabin share program, expected to kick off in June, would have conservation groups that maintain and observe a unit for a full year. They would report back to the startup with statistics throughout the trial period. The Seabin filter’s ability to catch micro fibers will also be expanded upon through further research and development.
While improving this technology to remove plastic debris from our waters is important, Ceglinski is focused on a “whole solution,” which includes education and science. They’ve hired a marine scientist that has created an educational program around Seabin’s technology. Already, eight schools around the world are participating. Ultimately, further education and eliminating plastic pollution at the source is the only way to truly eliminate this problem.
Like other startups in this industry, the Seabin Project faced plenty of challenges bringing the product all the way to this stage. Since it’s a niche item that’s not for everyone, funding was difficult. However, their ambition to create an amazing product has given them more connections and the ability to ramp up their product, and the future looks incredible to curb plastic pollution.