Through the month of April, Gate 39 Media’s Core Values Series posts will revolve around our earth and environment. We’ll highlight environmentally and socially responsible innovators, and earth-conscious companies discussing sustainability advances in agricultural technology, and share ideas on how we can all become better stewards of the earth.
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Over the past 50 years, plastic production has surged. It has become difficult, if not impossible, to fathom just how much of the plastic already produced has made its way into our oceans – yet its production is expected to double over the next 20 years. The World Economic Forum claims that by 2050 there may be more plastic than fish, by weight, in the sea. Today, up to 95% of plastic packaging material becomes trash shortly after its first use and only 5% goes on to become recycled for subsequent use.
The good news is there is a growing number of ocean friendly companies and projects that are removing plastic from our seas. Here are some of the companies and organizations that are helping to clean our world’s oceans.
Patagonia was one of the first earth-conscious companies and outdoors retail brand to start manufacturing fleece with recycled plastic bottles in 1993. They have also produced jackets using recycled nylon yarn which includes discarded fishing nets. The company was awarded the 2019 UN Champions of the Earth Award, a flagship honor for entrepreneurial vision and in recognition for its commitment to sustainability and advocacy for the protection of the planet’s fragile resources. Nearly 70 per cent of Patagonia’s products are made from recycled materials, including plastic bottles, and the goal is to use 100 per cent renewable or recycled materials by 2025.
Read Patagonia’s initiative “What We’re Doing About Our Plastic Problem”.
4Ocean decided to implement a business model that allows them to both spread the word about the ocean’s plastic crisis and pay for works and fund clean-ups that help the ocean. 4Ocean sells bracelets that are created out of the plastic they collect, the company pledges to pull a pound of garbage from the ocean every time someone purchases a bracelet. The company also hosts clean-ups around the world and educates developing countries on the importance of reusing and recycling plastic. To date, the brand has helped remove over 13 million pounds of trash from the ocean making them a leader among earth-conscious companies.
Learn more about 4Ocean.
A brand dedicated to protecting the world’s oceans and marine life, Sand Cloud sells eco-friendly towels, swimwear, clothing, and accessories. The company is best known for its beach towels and for appearing on Shark Tank where it landed a deal with Robert Herjavec. The company donates a portion of each sale to non-profit marine conservation organizations.
Read more about the Sand Cloud mission here.
United by Blue
With a philosophy that “change comes in waves”, United by Blue facilitate easy ways for their customers to generate less waste by creating products like reusable utensil kits. And they work to build community through our waterway cleanups, determined to spread the idea that if one business can make a difference, so can one person. United by Blue produces ethically sourced clothing and apparel, and for every product purchased they remove one pound of trash from the ocean. To date, the brand has helped remove over 1.5 million pounds of trash from the ocean.
Learn more about United by Blue.
Blueland sells a line of cleaning products that eliminate the need for one-use plastics which has the potential to eliminate over 100 billion single-use plastic bottles in the US alone, many of which can end up in the ocean. Blueland’s cleaners are sold as tablets that can be mixed with water in their separately sold refillable cleaning bottles. The refills are cheaper than buying a new full bottle of cleaner and help reduce the amount of packaging and single-use plastic.
Learn more about Blueland’s mission here.
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