The world produces 300 million tons of plastic each year, but only about 10% is recycled. The rest is dumped, landfilled or escapes as trash into landscapes, lakes, rivers and eventually, the ocean. About 8.3 million tons of plastic end up in the ocean every year, making up roughly 75% of all marine debris. Due to this, over 100 million marine animals die each year. In the past 10 years, we’ve made more plastic than the rest of last century combined. And by 2050, the population of fish will be outnumbered by our dumped plastics.
Around 15% of those marine debris usually end up back on our beaches, and when the tide is high, it is common that those trash can get carried back to the ocean. Beach cleanups aim to help this problem, but is often faced with issues such as sporadicity, since there are no dedicated platforms to host these events which also causes the events to be hard to find, since have to know what you're looking for on the internet if you're searching for beach cleanup events. Frequent organizers might also have a hard time tracking the history of cleanup events because of that lack of a dedicated platform.
What it does
Sealer provides a solution in the form of a website organizing beach cleanup events. There are 3 main things offered by Sealer :
- People and organizations that have concerns about the ocean and beach trash pollution can organize a beach cleanup event.
- Volunteers or even your average joe who are interested in joining beach cleanups can participate without any hassle.
- We serve as intermediaries between trash recycling plants and the cleanup organizers so that the collected trash is handled properly afterwards.
How we built it
We went into our ideation phase with some base knowledge, and came up with the basic idea, and then prototyped it in figma, and finally built our web application using the React.js framework.
Challenges we ran into
- Coordinating and working effectively while developing our services remotely.
- Coming up with new ideas about what problem we should tackle and how we should solve it.
- Doing a lot of work, from brainstorming to prototyping, in such a short amount of time.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are proud that we managed to complete this project even though we worked remotely from different cities. And we are also very excited to deploy our platform to be used to help revitalize the ocean.
What we learned
We actually learned a lot about marine life and how at risk so many species and ecosystems are, especially since we live in Indonesia, a maritime country with over 17,000 islands, and our lives revolve around the ocean!
Here's how our platform impacts the world.
Firstly, our platform greatly reduces beach trash and ocean water pollution. With our platform easing the task of organizing a cleanup event, more cleanups can be done and more people can participate.
This also means an increase in recycling and upcycling, which boosts the economy for the better.
Thirdly, our history feature allows governments to map beach waste for research purposes, as well as reduce clean-up costs that can go up to 500 million US dollars for a mere 90-towns-cleanup-project.
Last but not least, our web application also increases awareness amongst the public about ocean waste and the huge volume of plastics that come up to shore every year.