Cleaning up and closing the tap
Over the past years, we have initiated projects to inform and educate about plastic pollution and ocean conservation. We have joined actions of other organizsations on Fuerteventura, the Canary Islands, and abroad and have helped push for positive change.
Lately, our main focus is to stop the source of the pollution problem and close the tap. To recycle and reuse is a good step but if we want a clean ocean, we have to stop our single-use mentality.
Playa Pallet is a wooden beach bin made out of recycled materials. It is placed all over the island of Fuerteventura to nudge and motivate people to do beach cleanings daily. When picking up the trash you find on the beach you prevent it from washing back into the ocean, entangling wildlife, and breaking into microplastics.
We launched project Playa Pallet in 2018 and currently have 30 Pallet bins on Fuerteventura, filling up with ocean debris on a daily basis. To get to know more and see the locations visit the Playa Pallet website.
Takeaway food and drink litter make up almost half of the human-made waste in the ocean. Used for a few minutes, single-use bags, plastic bottles, food containers and food wrappers are the four most widespread items polluting our seas. This is a sad result of a throw away mentality that needs to change. That is why we started Clean Business, a certification given to companies committed to reduce their plastic footprint and make sustainability part of the menu. A Clean Business is one that aims to eliminate single-use plastic and chooses sustainability over convenience. This means No Styrofoam , No take away single-use plastic, no plastic bags, No plastic straws, No beverages in plastic bottles and a general reduction on the daily waste. Become part of the change!Learn more about Clean Business
Women and the Wind / Clean Ocean Project goes sailing
Our project Coordinator Laerke Heilmann is taking Clean ocean Project on a voyage across the Atlantic Ocean with captain Kiana Weltzein and her wooden catamaran Mara Noka. The crossing is powered only by women, wind and willpower and will be a discovery of how plastic pollution is affecting different Atlantic Island communities. The team will be exploring low-waste practicis, local food sourcing and living on renewable energy. Get to know more and support the journey.Women and the Wind Website
Stop sucking. The Clean Straw Project.
When the disturbing image of a turtle with a plastic straw in her nose went around the world, the outcry was huge. At least for a moment, people thought about their habit of using single-use plastic straws. But nothing has changed, on the contrary, consumption is rising. Read more
Just to give you an idea: Plastic straws are among the fifth most common waste found on Spanish beaches. According to Greenpeace, Spain consumes around 13 million straws a day, the highest consumption of plastic straws in a European country. Straws that are used for around 10 minutes, but will sit in landfills for up to 500 years or end up in our oceans.
With The Clean Straw Project we created a simple approach to taget this problem locally. We visit local bars and restaurants, asking them to sign a compromise contract with the environment. By signing the contract, they would promise to never use plastic straws again. We informed them about alternatives like reusable bamboo straws, paper straws, or simply no straws. All the places that sign our contract received a wooden sign, stating that they don’t offer plastic straws, this way the customer gets informed and the establishment makes a statement too. We also offered to collect all the plastic straws in stock and send them to a recycled plant that turned them in to furniture.
Plastic bag ban on Fuerteventura
The change of a habit is the hardest thing to do. Like using plastic
bags. We are used to it, we get them for free. Although we know that
they are a huge problem to the environment, we stick to it. It is a
routine of both, the local business and the customer.
Therefore the Clean Ocean Project startet the “Shop without plastic
bags” campaign on Fuerteventura. We contact local shops and offer them a
deal: They do not offer plastic bags anymore. In exchange we collect
all the plastic bags they have in stock and recycle them. If the local
shop sign the agreement, a sticker on his entrance door will distinguish
him as a trustful green partner. And a place where the customer likes
to go shopping. Because he can support the environment and the local
We will support this change of habit by providing information which
shops joining the campaign. A little guide for a new green shopping
If you are a shop owner feel free to contact us.Contact us
Planet or Plastic?
In a world where “green” and “sustainable” have become the new black, it can be hard to tell good intentions from greenwashing. Big companies are eager to show their engagement in the fight against climate change and plastic pollution, but is it just to green-wash their hands to the public? See our open letter about Neslés collaboration with National Geographic.Read the open letter
Clean Coffee Project
Buy it, consume it and throw it away. Single-used coffee capsules are the latest lifestyle product. They suit our laziness and single-use mentality. A huge problem. Because the production is a tremendous waste of valuable resources and the mix of even toxic materials like plastic and aluminium makes recycling difficult, expensive and a waste of energy. In the end most of the capsules are thrown in the general trash, than pile up on the landfills and finally end up in the ocean.
With our Clean Coffee Project campaign we want inform about this problem and force the European Government to implement a deposit system for single-use coffee capsules in the European Union.
Clean Coffee Mug
Whereever we are, a cup of coffee is with us. Coffee-to-go is a lifestyle, a symbol of our throw-away society which has a huge impact on the environment. In Germany alone 2,8 Billion single use coffee cups made of paper and plastic were thrown away in 2015. In the UK the numbers agree, imagine the output on a world wide scale.
Thrown away almost immediately, disposable cups are a horrendous waste of valuable resources as they are made from virgin materials. And the recycling is difficult, nearly impossible. Especially because of the plastic coating and the plastic or silicone lid. That’s why we will develop a 100% plastic free reusable coffee cup. To do so we collaborate with the ecosign Academy in Cologne, a university which is specialized on connecting design with sustainability.
To fund this project we launched a crowd-funding campaign. Because we believe that everyone can be a part of a green solution. The Clean Coffee Mug. No waste. No plastic. Just coffee. (button link to website: www.cleancoffeemug.org)
Every day 30 million drinking containers are being consumed in Spain, sadly only a very small amount gets recycled. All this waste is polluting our environment and washing up on our beaches. It is proven that a deposit and return system for drinking containers is the best solution to this massive problem. By reusing materials we save resources, money, and best of all - make sure that plastic bottles and cans don’t end up in the ocean.
We are working together with the Spanish non-profit organization Retorna whose goal is to implement a deposit system. We work on both a political level and joining campaigns to amplify the message. We need action to create a CLEAN PLANET!Retorna Website
It all started with bad news: REPSOL, a spanish oil giant planned to drill for oil close to Fuerteventura and Lancerote. We couldnt believe it. After a short moment of numbness we took action and initiated a petition page to collect signatures against the ignorance of politicians and the audacious behaviour of REPSOL.
After one month we already passed the little milestone of 15.000 signatures and on the 24th of March 2012 the Canary Islands has seen the biggest demonstration ever. Ten thousends of local people where on the streets of Puerto del Rosario/Fuerteventura and Arrecife/Lancerote. They had one clear message: NO OIL ON CANARY ISLANDS!
In 2012 more than 300 environmental groups joined the fight against the oil drilling. And three years later REPSOL withdraw. The next goal is to protect the area by declaring it a national biosphere reserve.