Sure, it may seem like lately, your feed is flooded with stories about the horrors of plastic pollution—like, 8 million tons of it ends up in the ocean, and by 2050, there will be more plastic in the sea than fish—but these innovative makers are giving us hope. From repurposing plastic into skateboards, sunglasses, and more here’s how a few folks are giving marine trash a total transformation.
1. American Express: Credit Cards
If you needed a reason to feel good about swiping your plastic (who doesn’t!), American Express is now offering the first-ever credit card made primarily with plastic debris found in the ocean. By teaming up with the Parley for the Oceans initiative, AmEx is also working to phase out single-use plastic straws at all its major offices as well pursuing a zero waste certification at its New York City headquarters by 2025.
2. Adidas: Sneakers
Here’s something to run for: shoes fashioned from plastic waste. Athletic powerhouse, Adidas, has also joined forces with Parley to create their iconic performance sneaks with recycled waste intercepted from coastal communities and beaches. The shoe line features trainers, runners, cleats, and everyday outdoor sneakers for everyone in the family.
3. Genusee: Sun and Eyeglasses
In the midst of the Flint, Michigan water crisis, where a contaminated water supply has affected thousands of the city’s residents, local eyewear makers, Genusee, are finding a way to fight back. With a tainted water supply since 2014, the city has had a steep need for bottled water; to help keep this plastic out of landfills, Genusee found a way to upcycle it into stylish frames and sunny shades. A single pair of the glasses helps save 15 plastic bottles. Now, that’s 20/20!
4. Bureo: Sports Equipment
This California sporting goods company is fishing for nets—to turn into skateboards, that is. On a mission to clear the marines from discarded fishing nets, which often pose a serious threat to marine life, Bureo helps collect old nets from coastal communities in Chile, cleans and sorts them, then shreds and melts the nets into recycled pellets. These pellets are then reborn into their signature skateboards, surf accessories, flyers, sunglasses, and even a special edition Jenga game.
5. 4Ocean: Jewelry
Who doesn’t love arm candy for a cause? Thanks to Florida-based eco-org, 4ocean, you can buy a simple (and super cute!) beaded bracelet and help fund the removal of one pound of trash from the ocean and coastlines worldwide. To date, 4ocean has helped removed 815,161 pounds, and counting, of marine debris. The bracelet beads are made from 100 percent recycled glass and the bracelets come adjustable, waterproof, and with a stainless steel 4Ocean charm—a perfect conversation starter the next time someone compliments your jewelry.
Feeling inspired? Help us #ChangeTheDay and keep our oceans cleaner this summer by taking our pledge: