Boyan Slat, at just 19yrs of age, felt compelled to take action against the dire effects of oceanic pollution. His persistence and passion led him to create a series of ‘floating booms’ and processing platforms which would help achieve his objectives. At the time of writing this article, Slat has raised over $21.7m (over R250m) to help scale up his intervention and save our planet.
At 22, today, he has spent three years working to research and develop non-invasive methods of cleaning the ocean. From his involvement in oceanic diving, to his direct impact on preserving the integrity of our oceans, Slat is already considered a young hero for his devotion. He has even gone so far as to establish his own non-profit organisation, Ocean Cleanup, to structure his efforts in oceanic conservation.
The quirky name, ‘Boomy McBoomface’ is one of the elements which attracted attention to Slat’s project. His team had originally expected to put out the prototype by the year 2020 but the phenomenal support from crowd-funders, corporates and other activism projects has overwhelmed them. In response, as thanks to the hundreds of thousands who donated, the team has used the capital injection wisely and will officially be launching the project later in 2017.
According to Ocean Cleanup, a single boom holds the capacity to collect as much as 50% of the Great Pacific Ocean’s plastic waste in five years. Traditional researchers have claimed that current efforts would have taken 10 years to clear up 42% of the ocean debris, and so the test of time begins. If Slat and his team are correct, the outcome for wildlife and water conservationists will be monumental.
“These systems will automatically drift or gravitate to where the plastic is. Instead of us being able to clean up 42% of the patch in 10 years, we can now clean up 50% of the patch in five years.” – B. Slat
With the pressure of being the ‘largest’ oceanic clean-up project in history, Ocean Cleanup has the world watching. Cheer Slat and his team on by sharing this article and joining in to help them save our planet.