HONOLULU — Collecting ocean trash has come to Hawai‘i, and it has gone high-tech.
Two Seabins, a cross between a trash bin and a pool skimmer that collects trash out of the ocean, were installed last month in Ala Wai Harbor on O‘ahu.
The project is sponsored by a local premium beverage company from Princeville which has plans to install two more on Kaua‘i by the end of the year.
Hawai‘i Volcanic Water co-founder and CEO Jason Donovan said his wife and co-founder Channon Donovan are sponsors of the “Seabins For Hawai‘i Project” because it is pono (righteous thing to do).
“We are proud to be a part of this amazing project contributing to a cleaner and greener Hawai‘i,” Jason Donovan said. “We’re planning to install one or two units on Kaua‘i, likely Nawiliwili Small Boat Harbor, by end of 2020.”
Australians Andrew Turton and Pete Celinski, two avid water-lovers, invented the Seabin to collect pollutants like trash, oil, fuel and detergents from oceans and harbors. In 2015, Turton and Ceglinski launched their Australian company, Seabin Pty Ltd.
“The act of cleaning up is simply not enough,” Celinski said. “To turn off the pollution tap, we are putting an equal focus on litter education, prevention and clean up. And we will use our pollution index data program for monitoring with the intention of filling key knowledge gaps needed for informed decision-making.”
In 2019, Seabin successfully installed over 719 Seabins in 50 countries.
Jason Donovan said the Seabin sits mounted to a pontoon, slightly below the surface of the water, sucking the water through and out the bottom, catching marine debris including microplastics and microfibers.
“The Seabin filters 600,000 liters per day, absorbing oily pollutants that may be found on the water’s surface,” Donovan said. “It’s remote-controlled, just like a pool skimmer, 24/7, while humans empty the binds daily and sort the trash and recycle what can be recycled into new products.”
The Ala Wai Harbor pilot program has approval from the state Department of Land and Naturl Resources to initially run for six months. It is estimated that it will remove approximately 1.5 tons of microplastic marine litter and plastic fibers, and will filter and clean more than 218 million liters of water, according to Donovan.
“Seabin’s objective is to provide a comprehensive service package that includes cleanup, prevention and measurable impact for marine-litter reduction, with the aim of ending plastic and other pollutants in the ocean,” Donovan said.
Donovan said that, in addition to the service contracts, the pollution-index data-monitoring reports will be available to the City &County of Honolulu and other key stakeholders.
Seabin cost roughly around $7,000 per unit. The Donovans hope to team up with other businesses to sponsor and install units all through the Hawaiian islands.
Hawai‘i Volcanic Water currently has partnered up with Patagonia and Ryzone Media on O‘ahu as well as Oliver Design Studios and Makana Weiss Media on Kaua‘i.
Businesses interested in partnering up for this project may sign up at seabinsforhawaii.com.
Stephanie Shinno, features, education, business, and community reporter can be reached at 245-0424 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Source: The Garden Island