PLASTIC IS ON BEACHES, SEA FLOORS AND IN CURRENTS
The ocean remains one of the most expansive, mysterious and diverse places on Earth. Today, we do not sufficiently protect it: estimated 8 million tonnes of plastic end up in our oceans every year, equivalent to 15 grocery bags filled with plastic for every meter of coastline in the world. Entanglement and ingestion of plastic by animals have become a much too common sight.
PLASTIC IS ACCUMULATING
IN OUR OCEANS
Plastic litter accumulates over time at the center of major ocean vortices forming “garbage patches” - large masses of floating debris fields across the seas. Each of the major oceans have plastic-filled gyres, including the well-known ‘great Pacific garbage patch’ that covers an area roughly equivalent to Texas. What can be done?
WASTE FREE OCEANS
OFFERS AN INNOVATIVE SOLUTION
We partner with the "Guardians of the Sea" - fishermen around the world.
Using a trawl that can be attached to regular fishing boats, fishermen can fish for ocean plastic on their idle fishing days, collecting between 2 and 8 tonnes of marine litter on each journey.
WE FISH FOR
AND BRING IT BACK
With whom we work
Waste Free Oceans collaborates with fishermen and local communities to collect waste as they are present in the fishing areas all year and play a major role in environmental surveillance of their region. Their familiarity with local water conditions, as well as necessary technical knowledge and tools such as vessels make them the ideal fit to be WFO partners.
Collection trawls can be either towed by boats of varying sizes or, if the body of water is a river, can be statically placed within the body of water, where it can rest unmanned until the net needs to be emptied. The collection trawl will be brought to the site and local partners will be trained on how to use the trawl: installation, waste collection and removal of trawl from the water with the use of a crane.
Potential harm to marine life
In developing the “Trash Catcher”, care has been given to ensuring that only floating litter is fished for and to minimise the extent to which aquatic fauna will be caught or otherwise adversely affected. The Thomsea trawl net extends only 70 cm into the water column (with the rest supported above the water line) to facilitate environmental care.
Consumption of fuel
Special trips for the collection and recovery of marine litter will only take place in predefined hotspots of ocean debris. Therefore, fishermen avoid consumption of fuel in the search for marine litter optimising the efficiency and environmental friendliness of the trawl collection system. Additionally, fishing vessels operating the trawls operate at very slow speeds with an average of 6 knots per hour.
Installation in your region
WFO's "Trash Catcher" can either be leased or purchased. To receive leasing and buying options, email us at