New sunglasses made from certified ocean plastic
Canadian PlasticsRecycling Sustainability
Offered by The Ocean Cleanup organization, the sunglasses are made from plastics recovered from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
The Ocean Cleanup, a Dutch-based organization founded to rid the oceans of plastic waste, has just unveiled its very first product for sale made with plastic certified from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch: The Ocean Cleanup sunglasses.
Each pair of The Ocean Cleanup sunglasses are made with plastics hauled in from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch – a widespread collection of marine debris in the North Pacific Ocean – and are designed to be easily recycled themselves once they reach the end of their life.
“We chose to make timeless sunglasses as our first product because they are durable, useful, and, since we’re dependent on word-of-mouth to spread our mission, we hope that by making something that is often carried around, they can also help create awareness,” said CEO Boyan Slat. A Dutch inventor, Slat founded The Ocean Cleanup in 2013.
“When making a product, we wanted to give value to this discarded plastic by turning it into something you never want to lose,” Slat continued. “We started by tracking and auditing the plastic the moment it left the ocean. By following the process laid out in the public standard developed by DNV GL, the plastic in the frames can be traced all the way back to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and you can be assured that the plastic in your sunglasses is that same plastic we removed from the patch in 2019. Through an independent laboratory, we also conducted extensive tests to ensure that the material is safe to use for sunglasses.”
The sunglasses were designed by Yves Béhar and developed by Safilo, one of the leading companies in the eyewear industry. The sunglasses are coloured blue using biobased color concentrates from Holland Colours, which spent months working with The Ocean Cleanup to develop two different shades of blue that could be dosed simultaneously to create a swirl pattern in the glasses frames that would mimic the ocean.
In addition to the post-consumer plastic frames, the lenses are polarized with full UV protection and have a special hinge design that makes for easy disassembly so the glasses can be recycled by material type. Additionally, the sunglasses’ case is made from recycled HDPE and the carrying pouch is made from recycled PET bottles.
The Ocean Cleanup estimates that an area equivalent to 24 football fields of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch can be cleaned from the proceeds of just one pair of sunglasses. All of the proceeds from sale of the sunglasses go back to The Ocean Cleanup to fund the continuation of the cleanup.
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Source: The Ocean Cleanup