River plastics removal project

Working every day at sea, we witness first-hand the devastating impact plastic pollution is having on the world’s oceans and marine life. Plastic pollution is a global problem, and we are committed to the effort to clean our oceans by developing systems to collect waste in rivers and waterways before it flows out to sea and breaks up in micro plastics, affecting sea life and ultimately human health.

We are collaborating with national and local authorities across the Benelux to create systems tailored to specific waterways, and have secured EU financial support in the form of a grant under the LIFE programme, the EU’s funding instrument for environmental and climate action. This allows us to design and deploy sustainable systems to collect waste in waterways, predict hotspots in rivers so we can optimise the efficiency of waste collection systems and advise on post-processing of the collected waste.

So far, our River Plastics Removal team has performed a study about plastic pollution in the Verversingskanaal in Scheveningen, the Netherlands, and developed and installed two plastic waste collection systems; for the Port of Antwerp, Belgium and for the Nieuwe Maas river in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Both locations are “hotspots” for plastic waste due to wind and currents that drive litter in certain directions. The waste collection systems called “Patje Plastic” and “Catchy” are robust systems that entirely run on wind and current to collect plastic.

We have established our own laboratory to analyse the plastic waste we catch and teamed up with the chemical and biomedical departments of leading universities to investigate micro-plastics. By analysing the collected waste, we are able to establish where it originates from and help ensure that the waste does not end up in the water in the first place.

Allseas is also a proud signatory of the Community of Practice Plastic (CoPP) declaration of intent, an initiative spanning government entities, private companies and educational institutions that aims to boost knowledge of the plastic problem and assess which policy interventions and practical measures work.

Read more about our environmental sustainability efforts.