We are true salty souls that share a deep passion for our oceans. As sailors, we have made the oceans our home and have seen firsthand that plastic waste is a big threat for our beloved sea and its wonderful inhabitants. We are committed to tackling the global plastic pollution problem with all our hearts and energy.
At IN MOCEAN, we view plastic as a precious material. Plastic was invented for durability and designed to be recycled in order to minimize the use of virgin resources. In remote areas with basic or non-existent waste management infrastructure and minimal employment opportunities, plastic recycling has the potential to induce positive change to help mitigate these disparities.
We work together with people living in remote coastal communities to build recycling workspaces that turn plastic trash into precious new products. We develop new income streams for local workers by educating them on how to sell the recycled products to tourists and those in the hospitality industry, like hotels and souvenir shops. At the same time, those invested in the workspaces help rid oceans and shorelines of trash and prevent local domestic waste from polluting nature in the first place. A win-win for local communities and the environment.
In detail, how does this work?
*Source: Wissenschaftlicher Dienst des Europäischen Parlaments
The first step towards affecting change is to be aware of an existing problem and a possible solution. If people knew about plastic waste’s potential to not only create value for people living in remote coastal areas but to also improve the general environmental and health situation, it would be seen as a precious asset. This change of mind set would give an incentive to collect the plastic that gets washed up ashore and prevent domestic waste from being improperly disposed of in the first place. So, let’s spread the good news!
By setting up community recycling workspaces in remote coastal areas, plastic waste will be turned into new goods. These recycled products can be sold through a network of various sales partners like hotels, restaurants, dive centers or souvenir shops. The revenue will create employment opportunities, paying local workers for the collecting, sorting, washing and recycling of the plastic. Plastic waste will be brought back into the economic circle which will provide value for the community instead of polluting the environment.
Turning plastic waste into sellable products has many positive impacts for people living in remote coastal areas. First of all, it provides an income for people who collect, sort, wash and recycle the plastic. Furthermore, it will clean the environment and prevent new pollution caused by plastic waste. Step by step, through education and hands-on learning experiences, the revenue from the recycling workspace can help to improve the general trash management infrastructure of the community. Simultaneoulsy, it will improve the local air, soil and water quality.
One important step in the fight against plastic pollution is to create awareness about the possible solutions. Especially in those areas where people are heavily affected by plastic trash. That`s why we started a crowdfunding in 2021 to outfit eight sailboats with mobile plastic recycling machines. Our Recycling Fleet has now started to demonstrate the potential of small-scale plastic recycling around the globe.
IN MOCEAN just completed our Baltic Sea Tour and we couldn’t be happier with how things went. Berenike Steiger, our co-founder, spent three weeks travelling Germany between Flensburg, Kiel, and Lübeck to raise awareness about the potential of plastic recycling and to talk about the work that IN MOCEAN is doing overseas in remote coastal villages. It was a ton of work to launch the workshops and activities in each port but seeing the public come out, take part, and learn was so rewarding!