+
interceptor trash fence, ocean pollution, river pollution

Literal islands of trash get created on the surface of the Caribbean Sea. This barrier aims to stop that.

The Interceptor Trashfence might sound like something out of an offbeat science fiction movie, but it's a very real tool being used to thwart further pollution in our oceans.

The Ocean Cleaunup, a nonprofit focused on technology that prevents plastics in rivers from drifting into the ocean, posted a video to YouTube revealing a trial of one of its latest innovations—The Interceptor Trashfence.

Living up to its name, the giant chain link fence was placed in Guatemala's Rio Motagua Basin, which The Ocean Cleanup believes to be the “heaviest polluting river in the world.” With an estimated 20,000 tons of plastic flowing through it each year, it’s a pretty safe assumption.

All of that waste goes directly into the Caribbean Sea, where blankets of garbage can be seen floating on the water’s surface. In 2017, the body of water was dubbed “the sea of plastic'' after disturbing photos showing those immense amounts of litter went viral.

However, with this trash fence intercepting an incoming tsunami of trash, there’s hope that the Caribbean Sea might return to its former glory.


The video shows the approaching wave, edging ever closer to the Interceptor. As the water impacts the Trashfence’s sturdy steel beams, all the plastic can be seen staying behind. It will take countless hours to clean up the literal mountains of trash left behind, but the good news is, the oceans would be clean and clear.

As the video progresses, we see that the Interceptor is not quite foolproof yet. Some bits of plastic are able to flow through certain weak spots in the fence. Still, the amount of garbage that stays behind is remarkable.

It’s hard to tell what is more uplifting— seeing the filtered water go about its merry way, or the look of delight the workers have at seeing their experiment get that much closer to success.

Many well-wishing commenters left their advice on how to prevent a potential breach in the future, such as molding the fence into a V shape pointing upstream, or doing a multifence approach. Others just came in to praise the nonprofit's efforts.

"Man this is heartbreaking to see yet so inspirational. You guys are doing amazing work," one person wrote.

Another added, "We need more people like you and the effort you put into this project to save our world for future generations and keep us from killing off our planet."

Even if the Interceptor wasn’t completely victorious, the overwhelming amount of trash accumulated could be enough of a shocking visual to at least bring a sense of urgency to the situation. As The Ocean Cleanup explained in the description section of its video, 1000 rivers are responsible for roughly 80% of ocean pollution. A twofold combination of removing plastic that’s already there, as well as stopping new plastic from entering (i.e., “closing the tap”), is essential.

The Interceptor is an innovative piece of technology, but a positive impact still primarily lies in the everyday choices we make as individuals. Relying less on single-use plastic items—making sure to bring cloth bags to grocery stores, not using plastic straws, opting for glass containers over Tupperware, and so on—is one small thing that can make a big difference. If there’s any doubt, just take another look at the video for a sobering reminder.

True

Innovation is awesome, right? I mean, it gave us the internet!

However, there is always a price to pay for modernization, and in this case, it’s in the form of digital eye strain, a group of vision problems that can pop up after as little as two hours of looking at a screen. Some of the symptoms are tired and/or dry eyes, headaches, blurred vision, and neck and shoulder pain1. Ouch!

Keep ReadingShow less
popular

Artist captures how strangers react to her body in public and it's fascinating

Haley Morris-Cafiero's photos might make you rethink how you look at people.

Credit: Haley Morris-Cafiero

Artist Haley Morris-Cafiero describes herself on her website as "part performer, part artist, part provocateur, part spectator." Her recent project, titled "Wait Watchers" has elements of all her self-descriptors.

In an email to us, Morris-Cafiero explained that she set up a camera in the street and stood in front of it, doing mundane activities like looking at a map or eating gelato. While she's standing there she sets off her camera, taking hundreds of photos.

Keep ReadingShow less
Joy

This Giving Tuesday, Furbo makes it easier than ever to support dogs in need

Every Furbo purchase helps provide additional support for dog shelters & rescues.

Image via Furbo

Furbo is using Giving Tuesday to support dogs in need

Every year, six million lost or abandoned animals end up in shelters or rescues. Thankfully, 76% of those pets are adopted by their forever family. Of course, the dream is to find every stray animal a loving home, but getting there takes time, money, and resources.


If you’re a dog lover, especially with a rescue pup, you understand the importance of supporting animal rescue organizations and shelters. Like you, Furbo Dog Camera wants to ensure all dogs are safe and happy at home. That’s why they founded Furbo For Good, the company’s charitable initiative that supports rescued dogs. And this Giving Tuesday, they’ll be doing more for pets in need than ever before!

Keep ReadingShow less

A metal detector hobbyist looking for treasure on the beach.

Joseph Cook, 37, is a popular metal detectorist on social media where he shares videos of the many treasures he finds on Florida beaches. But what’s even more engaging than his finds is the incredible excitement he brings to the hobby. It’s like watching Steve Irwin, but with a Florida accent.

Not only is his attitude infectious but he also makes a point of doing good when he finds lost items. He wears a necklace around his neck with multiple rings that he’s found to remind him of his mission to return lost treasures.

Recently, he told SWNS that he dug up "the biggest diamond I ever found” on the beach. "When I first found it I thought it would just be a nickel, but then I dug it up and it was just this big old diamond and platinum ring," he said.

Keep ReadingShow less
Pop Culture

Dwayne Johnson 'rights a wrong' at the 7-Eleven he used to shoplift from as a kid

The Rock admitted to stealing a Snickers bar every day for almost a year.

Johnson bought every Snickers bar in the store to "right a wrong"

Dwayne Johnson is a celebrity known for his generosity. Sure people know about his one-of-a-kind eyebrow raise an insane gym schedule, but it’s also common knowledge that he regularly makes surprise appearances to those in need. Not to mention his gifts are legendary—from puppies to trucks to houses.

So, it might not seem that out of the ordinary for the wrestler-turned-actor to buy every single Snickers bar at a 7-eleven and give them to customers for free. However, this was more than a good deed—it was an act of redemption.

As the “Black Adam” star shared in a video posted to his Instagram, this was the 7-Eleven he used to shoplift from while growing up in Hawaii.
Keep ReadingShow less