Boyan Slat: I am Boyan Slat, age 19. I'm the founder and president of the "The Ocean Cleanup Foundation". I invented a method to cleanup almost half the Great Pacific garbage patch in just 10 years using the current to my advantage.
I was diving in Greece, I suddenly noticed I came across more plastics bags than fish. Then investigated the problem itself and why it's so difficult to cleanup. There is 150 million kilos of plastic in the Great Pacific garbage patch. In the past, there have been many ideas to cleanup plastic from the ocean, but they are all based on vessels with nets that would sort of go fishing for plastic. Not only it would take many billions of dollars and thousands of years. Yeah, it would also create bycatch in emissions and this plastic would doesn't stay one spot. So it keeps turning around in the ocean.
Why would you move through the oceans if the oceans can move through you ? So instead of going off to the plastics we touch a floating structure to the seabed and that first captures and concentrates the plastic before it can then get out of the ocean. From this Great Pacific garbage patch where we focused recent job. Almost half the plastic can be extracted within the ten years, so that is equal to about 70 million kilos of that extraction.
Once every one and a half month the plastic would need to be collected by a large tanker ship to land and it would there be turned into something else. We have proved plastic can be turned into oil, but perhaps there are even some other possibilities to use it into new materials.
The oceans are the most important life support system of a planet. It regulates the climate, it produces oxygen. The fast majority of biodiversity can be found in the ocean. The last few decades, especially there have been a lot of problems and they increase in intensity. Particularly,plastic pollution has been on the rise.
I don't really view my age as a disadvantage to get these things done. Simply, I thought about how to tackle the problem and worked for a couple of years to bring it closer to reality. The internet really made this project possible of course. Thanks to things like these presentations and crowdfunding you can do a large amount of things with limited amount of resources. Spreading the words would definitely be helpful and ,I think, in 20 years that this project has succeeded. Of course, I have other ideas. I'll still be busy.There may be small errors in this transcript.