Kick-off research project towards plastic free oceans

Galapagos Plastic Free

World Conservation Day was the kick-off of the Galapagos Plastic Free project, which aims to make the Galapagos Islands the first ecosystem to be plastic-free again.

In the project oceanographers Erik van Sebille and Stefanie Ypma work together with the Galapagos Conservation Trust and international ecologists, sociologists and a garbologist. The Utrecht researchers are working on the development of an app that can predict where and when plastic will wash ashore on the Galapagos. This will help local park rangers to clean up efficiently and thus prevent the plastic from ending up back in the sea.

Watch the animation about the research project here:

Identifying ocean currents plays a crucial role in the project, requiring a new type of drifters. The Utrecht University Fund has started a crowdfunding campaign, with which you can sponsor a drifter that is suitable for research into the transport of plastic on the surface. By doing so, you contribute to plastic-free oceans.

The kick-off of the project was a live webinar in which researchers Erik van Sebille and Stefanie Ypma informed the donors of the Utrecht University Fund about the research, and answer questions from participants.

Watch the webinar (in Dutch)