The Se­abin: the de­bris-suck­ing saviour of the oceans

The Guardian Australia - - Environment -

Name: The Se­abin.

Age: Brand new.

Ap­pear­ance: It’s like a bin, but it’s in the sea.

Why would you put a bin in the sea? To col­lect rub­bish.

A bin in the sea is rub­bish. Not this one. The Se­abin is there to gather waste, not be waste.

How far do I have to swim out to put my gum in it? You don’t. Your rub­bish comes to the Se­abin.

I am not ashamed to say that I don’t get it. In­vented by Aus­tralian surfers Pete Ceglin­ski and An­drew Tur­ton, the Se­abin is a “float­ing de­bris in­ter­cep­tion de­vice” that uses a pump to suck rub­bish off the wa­ter’s sur­face. It can col­lect 1.5kg of de­bris a day, and holds up to 12kg be­fore it needs emp­ty­ing.

What does sea rub­bish con­sist of ? Plas­tic bot­tles and bags, crisp pack­ets, cig­a­rette butts – that sort of thing.

How dis­gust­ing. Can you use it to catch fish, by any chance? No, they don’t swim close enough to the sur­face to get sucked in. But it can re­move oil and de­ter­gents from the wa­ter.

Amaz­ing. So we put one of these ev­ery 50 yards across the ocean, prob­lem solved. The Se­abin isn’t suit­able for open ocean – too many waves. It’s meant for prob­lem ar­eas such as mari­nas, where tides and cur­rents con­cen­trate float­ing de­bris. One is cur­rently be­ing in­stalled in Portsmouth har­bour.

Will one be enough? Not re­ally. A typ­i­cal marina would prob­a­bly need four, but they cost £3K each.

Do you know how many bins I could buy at Ikea for £3K? This one floats, though.

Oh yeah. The in­ven­tors have set up a fac­tory in France, and hope to make 360 Se­abins a month.

My cal­cu­la­tions sug­gest that 360 bins a month will not rid the oceans of rub­bish any time soon. You’re cor­rect. Even Ceglin­ski and Tur­ton know the em­pha­sis needs to be on re­think­ing the way we treat our seas.

Ex­actly. Why can’t peo­ple put rub­bish where it be­longs, on un­fenced waste ground? It is also about liv­ing sus­tain­ably. Ceglin­ski and Tur­ton hope one day to make a Se­abin from re­cy­cled plas­tics col­lected by a Se­abin.

Do say: “The Se­abin may not be the so­lu­tion to ocean pol­lu­tion, but it’s a start.”

Don’t say: “Have you seen my new Canal­trol­ley? It’s like a shop­ping trol­ley, but it’s in a canal.”

Ace of waste … Peter Ceglin­ski and An­drew Tur­ton, in­ven­tors of the Se­abin.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.