Initiated by Waste2Wear, the Ocean Plastic Project brought together stakeholders from different sectors in a joint effort to find solutions to reduce plastic pollution in the oceans. Last year, in collaboration with eight Dutch retail companies, the project contributed to the recycling of 2 million PET bottles into innovative fabrics for fashion, swimwear, outdoor and interior.
Plastic has always been a threat to the environment but its most negative impact comes when it enters the oceans as it kills hundreds of thousands of sea animals. It is estimated that 8 million tons of plastic enter the oceans each year (that means one ton every four seconds).
The plastic is collected by local collectors and former fishermen who’ve lost their income due to environmental regulations that apply fishing bans in the Yangtze River. In collaboration with the local government and the Narwhal Ocean Center, Waste2Wear created a stable business model in which these former fishermen and collectors can now derive their income from fishing plastic out of the ocean, coastal areas and waterways. They currently collect more than three tons of waste from the ocean every week.
Being a frontrunner in creating innovative fabrics from recycled plastic waste, Waste2Wear understands the value chain, compliance tools and the importance of trustworthy and transparent data. That is why the Waste2Wear® blockchain system will be embedded in its collection of Ocean Fabrics.
The Waste2Wear® Ocean Fabrics show that circular thinking not only contributes to reducing plastic waste in our oceans, but can also generate new jobs as a positive consequence. Waste2Wear has partnered with former fishermen to collect ocean plastic, which not only helps the environment but also improves the livelihood of fishermen and waste collectors.