Maersk will provide marine support to The Ocean Cleanup organisation by installing a pilot clean-up system in the Pacific. This will be the world’s first major initiative for collection of plastic from the ocean and it will be launched on September 8. The system will start from Ocean Cleanup’s assembly yard in Alameda, through the San Francisco Bay, toward the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
In September 2018, the first offshore cleaning system will be installed by Maersk Supply Service’s AHTS vessel, Maersk Launcher, in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP), located 1200 nautical miles off the coast of San Francisco.
The system will be towed at low speed, 250 nautical miles offshore for a sea trial before towage to the installation location at the GPGP. Maersk Supply Service will also monitor the Cleanup System 001. The campaign is expected to last 60 days.
The assembly of System 001 will be finalized on August 30, after which it will lowered into the Seaplane Lagoon, preparing it for the launch. In the evening of September 7, the system will be transferred from the lagoon to make tow with the Maersk Launcher at Anchorage 8. A second vessel will be fixed to the aft of System 001 to maintain a stable position.
The total contribution will be around USD 2m in vessel services and equipment which also includes providing transportation of equipment needed for the installation of Cleanup System 001, from the UK and Denmark to San Francisco, as well as providing open top containers for the collected plastic.
Claus V. Hemmingsen, Vice CEO of A.P. Moller – Maersk and CEO of the Energy division mentioned:
In addition to always taking great care that our operations do not pollute the oceans with plastic, we are also very pleased to take part in the world’s first major collection of plastics from the ocean. As a responsible maritime operator, we are committed to ensuring that the oceans can remain a healthy environment for generations to come.
The Ocean Cleanup’s aims to install at least 60 systems to remove 50% of the 80,000 tonnes of plastic in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch within five years.
Dutch inventor Boyan Slat founded The Ocean Cleanup at the age of 18 in his hometown of Delft, the Netherlands. The Ocean Cleanup’s team consists of more than 70 engineers, researchers, scientists and computational modelers working daily to rid the world’s oceans of plastic. By using the ocean currents to its advantage, the passive drifting systems are estimated to clean up half the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in five years.
The Ocean Cleanup is supported by many companies, organizations and governments, some of which include:
- The Government of Netherlands;
- The University of Vienna;
A livestream will be available on the page of The Ocean Cleanup on on September 8, starting at noon PDT / 3 pm EDT / 9 pm CEST, which will show the launch of the world’s first ocean cleanup system.