Boyan Slat has established himself as one of the most promising young entrepreneurs worldwide. The Dutch inventor creates technologies to tackle global issues of sustainability. He is the founder and CEO of The Ocean Cleanup, which develops technologies to extract, prevent, and intercept plastic pollution in the oceans.
Entrepreneur Boyan Slat: Photo credit: The Ocean Cleanup
Slat is to speak in a session called “Energy Game Changers”, on Wednesday 31 August. He will address how The Ocean Cleanup project will use offshore competence to facilitate “the largest cleanup in history”.
“Why move through the oceans if the oceans can move through you?” Slat asked himself.
Instead of going after the plastic with boats and nets, Boyan has devised a system that would allow the ocean currents to passively gather the plastic, through a long network of floating barriers. This reduces the theoretical cleanup time from millennia to mere years at a simultaneous multi-factor reduction of the costs involved!
Photo credit: Erwin Zwart/The Ocean Cleanup
Solvable – thanks to technology Slat says that the problem of plastic pollution has always been portrayed as something that is unsolvable. However, he believes that because we have been able to create a problem of this scale thanks to technology, we should be able to solve it through technology as well.
“When someone tells you something is impossible, the absoluteness of that statement should be enough to make you wary and want to investigate more. 20 years ago, without social media, video conferences and so on, The Ocean Cleanup would never have been possible. What we are doing has never been done before – we’re using state of the art offshore tech, working together with renowned offshore companies and institutes, from a shared belief we can rid the oceans of plastic,” Slat says.