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Marine Life & Conservation

The Ocean Cleanup introduces first product made with Ocean Plastic Pollution

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Sunglasses made from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, with 100% of the proceeds funding the continuation of the cleanup

The Ocean Cleanup, the Dutch non-profit organization developing advanced technologies to rid the world’s oceans of plastic, today presented their plan to go full circle in their mission: creating a product from the plastic they recovered from the ocean to help fund the continued cleanup. The organization has taken its first batch of plastic certified from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP), recycled it, and turned it into something useful and durable: sunglasses. Through a contribution of EUR/USD 199, supporters have the chance to own a piece of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and help fund the continuation of the cleanup, as 100% of the proceeds will go directly to the next cleanup operations.

Full Circle: turning trash into treasure to clean up more trash

The product is made with the first plastic catch during the System 001/B campaign in the GPGP. When the campaign concluded, the plastic was returned to shore in December 2019, marking the end of Mission One and starting the next journey: going full circle from trash to treasure by creating a product to help fund further cleanup. To maintain the claim of origin and give supporters assurance that the plastic is from the GPGP, The Ocean Cleanup followed the steps laid out in the public traceability standard developed by DNV GL, leading global certification body. Recycling this ocean plastic had never been done at a commercial scale before, but, together with a team of experienced partners, The Ocean Cleanup managed to turn it into a high-quality and safe material from which this limited first batch of products has been made. And, because The Ocean Cleanup is a non-profit, 100% of the proceeds will go into next year’s cleanup operations. Each pair of sunglasses is estimated to enable cleaning an equivalent of 24 football fields worth of the GPGP. When every pair from the first batch is claimed, that will equate to approximately 500,000 football fields of cleanup in the GPGP, allowing the organization to use plastic to clean up even more plastic – going full circle each time until they have achieved their mission: ridding the oceans of plastic.

Designed in California, made in Italy

Sunglasses were chosen as the first product because the organization wanted to offer something that is durable and useful and reminds users of the beauty and importance of our oceans. The Ocean Cleanup™ sunglasses are meant to last and stay valuable, they are designed in California by renowned designer Yves Béhar and his team at fuseproject and crafted with care in Italy by Safilo, one of the leading Italian eyewear companies and manufacturer of sunglasses. The frame is made with plastic certified by DNV GL from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. The sunglasses’ case is made with the recycled material from System 001, also known as ‘Wilson’, the first ocean cleanup system deployed in 2018. With end of life in mind, from the metal hinges to the polarized lenses, all components are designed to be easily taken apart and recycled again should this be necessary.

“It’s incredible to think that only a year ago this plastic was polluting our oceans and now it’s something beautiful, thereby turning a problem into a solution. Of course, The Ocean Cleanup is only here today
because of our supporters, so I am excited these sunglasses are just another opportunity for everyone to be part of the cleanup and help us maximize our impact. I am thankful for the support of our followers and our partners and for their dedication and efforts to realize this very important step on our mission to rid the world’s oceans of plastic,” says Boyan Slat, Founder and CEO of The Ocean Cleanup.

Next steps

The sunglasses are now available on The Ocean Cleanup’s website for a contribution of EUR/USD 199. With only a limited amount of plastic from the GPGP available at this moment, availability is finite. Different product lines will be explored in the future to help turn the pollution of yesterday into the cleanup of tomorrow.

For more information about The Ocean Cleaup visit their website by clicking here.

Marine Life & Conservation

Shark Night with The Shark Trust

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The Shark Trust are on a mission to get people talking about sharks. What makes a shark, why sharks matter, what challenges they face and what YOU can do to protect them.

The Ocean Conservation Trust has been working with the Shark Trust to produce a series of “Shark Shorts” – simple explainer films to get the conversation started. And now it’s premiere night!

You can be there!

  • Wednesday 11th August at 6:30pm
  • National Marine Aquarium, Plymouth

Walk the red carpet and take your seat for the first showing of the Shark Shorts.

The Shark Trust will be there with the Ocean Conservation Trust to answer your questions and make this a truly jawsome night.

Book your ticket by clicking here.

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Marine Life & Conservation

Expedition on the Saba Bank to Enhance Tiger Shark Protection

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This August a team of researchers will spend a week on the Saba Bank investigating the life-cycle of tiger sharks. Researchers will investigate the migration routes, where and when tiger sharks breed so they can protect them better within the Dutch Caribbean’s Yarari Marine Mammal and Shark Sanctuary as well as beyond. In this expedition members from the Saba Conservation Foundation (SCF), Nature Foundation St. Maarten (NFSXM), St. Eustatius National Parks (STENAPA), STINAPA Bonaire, the Aruba National Parks Foundation (FPNA), the Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance (DCNA) and World Wildlife Fund for Nature the Netherlands (WWF-NL) will participate.

In 2016, the Saba Conservation Foundation, Nature Foundation St. Maarten, and Sharks for Kids  partnered together as part of DCNA’s Save our Sharks Project funded by the Dutch National Postcode Lottery. Since then, satellite tagging of tiger sharks has been conducted on the Saba Bank and around Sint Maarten. Through this research we now know that tiger sharks in Dutch waters travel throughout the Caribbean basin, with most of these tagged sharks being sexually mature females. During the upcoming expedition the researchers aim to not only tag and track more tiger sharks to further investigate the life cycle, but they will also measure if and how large the pups inside pregnant tiger sharks are. This will help to determine if the Saba Bank is in fact a breeding ground for tiger sharks, one of the main goals of the expedition.

(c) Sami Kattan

The other objective is to see where these transboundary sharks migrate to in order to better understand the importance of the Yarari Marine Mammal and Shark Sanctuary and protect other geographical areas. The Yarari Sanctuary was established on September 1, 2015 and aims to protect marine mammals, sharks, and rays throughout the waters of Bonaire, Saba, and since September 2018, St. Eustatius. Collaboration between not only the six Dutch Caribbean islands but countries across the wider Caribbean as a whole is necessary in order to protect and conserve these essential species and ecosystems. Therefore the Caribbean Shark Coalition was recently formed to collaborate better in the entire Greater Caribbean region.

Celebrated on July 28 each year, World Nature Conservation Day acknowledges that a healthy environment is the foundation for a stable and healthy society. This includes a healthy ocean which, undoubtedly, depends on sharks. Sharks are large top predators that serve a critical role in maintaining balance in the marine ecosystem. Sharks help keep their prey population healthy by eating the weak while also affecting their prey’s distribution. In healthy oceans, sharks help to maintain stable fish stocks and healthy coral reefs and seagrass beds, which is important for the fisheries and the economy of the islands.

The Tiger Shark research expedition is coordinated by the DCNA and generously funded by WWF-NL through the Biodiversity Funds and the Dutch National Postcode Lottery.

For more information on the Pregnant Tiger Shark Expedition, follow the participating organizations on Facebook, Instagram or DCNA’s website.

Header image: Jarrett Corke (WWF Canada)

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Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

£1475 per person based on double occupancy.  Soft all inclusive board basis, buffet meals with snacks, tea and coffee always available.  Add a week on at Roots Red Sea Resort before or after the liveaboard for just £725pp.  Flights and transfers are included.  See our brochure linked above for the full itinerary.

This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email john@thescubaplace.co.uk

www.thescubaplace.co.uk

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