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Ocean Cleanup and DNV GL play it cool with recycled plastic sunglasses

Photo: DNV GL TheOceanCleanup_Sunglasses_HiRes-5.1-scaled (002).jpg
The Ocean Cleanup has collaborated with classification society DNV GL to produce sunglasses from recycled ocean plastics waste.

In the same week as a report was published into the growing global menace of plastic waste, DNV GL has announced the launch of the first product bearing its new standard for use of recovered ocean plastic.

The product is sunglasses made from recycled plastic collected from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP) by the Ocean Cleanup project, headed by young Dutch entrepreneur Boyan Slat.

The Ocean Cleanup collaborated with DNV GL on developing the standard, intended to allow companies to demonstrate to their customers that their products are recycled from ocean plastic. For the sunglasses, DNV GL certified that 95% of their frames were made from plastic recycled from GPGP.

“Extracting plastic is only the first step in addressing a serious threat to our oceans and rivers,” commented Luca Crisciotti, ceo of DNV GL-Business Assurance. Sales of products bearing the new standard will now help further extraction efforts, he added, with certification “building trust into the authenticity of the reclaimed plastic and new products made from it.”

All proceeds from the sale of the sunglasses will be used by non-profit body The Ocean Cleanup to continue its mission to rid the oceans of plastic. The project uses a proprietary system of a giant floating tube with a skirt hanging below, which collects plastic waste and channels it into a retention compartment for later collection.

Various large companies including Maersk and Boskalis have helped out with funding and logistics for the project, which began operations when the first system was towed out of the port of San Francisco in September 2018. Before that Boyan Slat was adjudged winner of the Nor-Shipping Young Entrepreneur Award in 2015, having already used crowdfunding to raise sufficient funding to develop a pilot system. 

Meanwhile, this week’s report from Minderoo and SYSTEMIQ found that efforts to address the global problem of accumulating plastic waste were being hindered by a lack of transparency throughout the plastics supply chain that it urged should stop. Every month, over one million tons of plastic enters rivers and oceans worldwide, the report stated.

Find out more about the sunglasses and help fund The Ocean Cleanup -