How often do we see and realize that we are heavily polluting our lakes, rivers and oceans through overconsumption and insufficient waste management? And how often does this thought remain with-out action?
The two Australian surfers, sailors and ocean enthusiasts Pete Ceglinski and Andrew Turton however did not want to keep on seeing this tragedy and have set themselves a great and admirable goal: To contribute to pollution free oceans for future generations.
With this goal in mind, they both quit their jobs and founded Seabin. In order to bring their mission to life and develop the Seabin ‘Version One’, an impressive 260’000 USD were raised through a crowd-funding campaign.
Now, what is a Seabin and what can it do? As the name suggests, it is a water garbage bin, in short: a Seabin. The device consists of a bucket with a sieve, a water pump and a floating housing, the actual part that keeps the Seabin on the water surface.
When the Seabin is in the water, the water pump displaces the water inside the Seabin, thereby creating suction at the edges of the Seabin, which causes the Seabin to pull garbage inside it from a distance of up to 10 meters (33 ft). In this way, the unit filters approximately 25’000 liters (6’600 gallons) of water per hour. The device can collect up to 1.5 kg (3.3 lbs) of waste per day and holds a total of 20 kg (44 lbs) of waste. To illustrate this more vividly: A Seabin can collect up to 90’000 plastic bags, 37’500 coffee cups or 16’500 PET bottles per year. Experience has shown that waste of all kinds ends up in the Seabin. In addition to larger plastic parts, cans, cigarette butts, foils and microplastic of up to 2 mm (0.08 inches) in diameter end up in the Seabin. Each unit is also equipped to filter oils and other liquid pollutants out of the water. An important point to mention here is that the Seabin does not pose any danger to marine life such as fish.
Today, Seabins are mainly used on a smaller scale, such as in ports. In Europe, the devices are used in the port towns of Kiel and Portsmouth, and Seabins are now also being used in Melbourne and soon in Sydney, Queensland and other Australian coastal towns. The reviews are consistently positive and indicate an efficient and effective solution.
In addition to the development of the Seabin, the project is also committed to education, research, innovation and know-how. In collaboration with the Global Ambassador Program, an instructional booklet for schools was developed that illustrates the problem of ocean pollution and thus begins to create awareness among the youngest children and shows them how to act accordingly.
In 2018, Seabin also got accepted into an accelerator program of Booking Cares in Amsterdam. The organisation received the second highest funding of 350’000 Euro. To get into this program, Seabin had to assert itself as one of the ten most promising young companies out of more than 700 applicants.
So, if you are living close to a lake, the ocean or a river and your home port is polluted, ask your government to act and present them the Seabin Project!
The Seabin is a very promising variant and it even can do much more. The constant consumption of 500 watts of electricity and the approx. 4000 US dollars acquisition leave room for improvement from a customer and sustainability perspective. The developers, however, are about to let the Seabin run on solar and wind energy and significantly reduce the price per unit.