First Ever Award Winning Solar Powered Ocean Clean Up Catamaran Launches in Ibiza
They begin cleaning across the Balearic sea at the end of August and expect to have a significant impact. The system itself covers an area of 22.224 m2 every hour, which is a total of 3.11 football fields whilst filtering 11.112 m3 during that period. This is equal to 4.4 olympic swimming pools per hour. The filters work at 0.5m below the surface, collecting plastic sized from 2 cm and upwards to a maximum of the entire boat`s width. This ensures that larger debris such as industrial plastic waste can also be collected.
The idea was initially raised by Ed en Joke after they found a struggling sea turtle caught in plastic and unable to swim in the open sea just off the Ibiza coastline. From that moment on, their non profit iBi Foundation started to collect plastics around the waters of ibiza, by using the simple means of a small scoop net.
Ed Founder of iBi Foundation Comments
“Although we were making an impact, it was slow and it was difficult to keep on top of all the waste. We obviously thought this was taking too long and we started to think about a quicker and more efficient way to do this, and then we met La Bella Verde and their Solar Powered Catamarans!”
iBi Foundation are also working very closely with Plastic Free Ibiza, Ibiza Preservation Fund, Noctiluca Asociación, LBV Foundation and World Cleanup Day, working together collectively to achieve the island`s goal to be free from single use plastic by 2023.
Plans are already in development, once the system is fully operational and working effectively, to further expand the fleet of catamarans. They aim to maintain the local oceans keeping them as clean as possible for the long term, and also with possibility of expansion to other international tourist locations.
Plastic, Posidonia and Ibiza Sea Life
One of the main organisms that are affected by plastic is the Posidonia seagrass. Ibiza is one of the few locations where Posidonia oceanica (commonly known as Neptune grass or Mediterranean tapeweed) exists. This is a rare seagrass species that is endemic to the Mediterranean Sea. It forms large underwater meadows that play an important part for the local ecosystem encouraging its habitat. This is known to be one of the oldest and longest clonal colonies on Earth, dating as far back as 100,000 years. This has led to the land between Ses Salinas and Formentera being declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1999. Posidonia oceanica is a higher plant species that differs greatly from algae, with leaves, stalks and roots, as well as flowers and fruit. Its flowers indicate that this plant was once a land plant that has adapted itself to life underwater, where the flowers do not need to attract insects for pollination or pollen transportation. They are particularly known for supporting the balance of sediments by forming barrier reefs, maintaining the coastline and protecting beaches from erosion.
About iBi Foundation
Whilst sailing the Mediterranean Sea in Summer 2017 the Founders followed a group of dolphins on their journey across the ocean. This led to an incident that sparked them into immediate action after discovering a sea turtle, caught in a plastic cloth and fighting for its life. Bringing the sea turtle on board they released the animal from its plastic confines returning it to the water. As it returned to freedom they gave him the fitting name of iBi as they were off the coast of Ibiza.
This special and inspiring encounter created a lasting impression, prompting the crew to act on this experience and give something back to nature. They quickly decided that from that point they would contribute to an ongoing clean of the ocean, creating widespread awareness about the harmful use of plastics. Ibiza became a fitting place to initiate the project, so removing plastic from the Mediterranean Sea was the first thing they started to do. Every little bit helped, but there was more that needed to be done. That is why they began to entertain how to leverage their experience to do even more, making others more aware of the use of plastics and imparting the idea for the iBi Foundation.
In January 2019, iBi Foundation was launched and their cleaning began. Currently, around 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic are floating around in our oceans. This is equivalent to a garbage patch full of plastic that is larger than France and Spain combined. The iBi Foundation supports various charities and projects that try to do something about this issue, setting even larger goals for the future.
Besides the iBi Foundation they have set up a kids clothing brand named “iBi Free Life” where ecological cottons are used and plastic packaging materials are banned. From every sold item iBi Free Life donates €5,- to the iBi Foundation. We started this kids clothing brand to create more awareness amongst the children who are obviously the future!
The Everyday Agency
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