Through the Plastic Lens:
Sailing Towards a
Sustainable Future.

Clynton Guzmán | Content Correspondent | 4ocean Guatemala.

As a cameraman, editor, and photographer, I have captured countless images throughout my career.

However, none compare to the impact of the first photos I took on a heavily beach in Quetzalito, Guatemala.

When I first arrived, plastic reached up to my knees. It was like walking through a desert, but instead of sand, everything was covered in plastic.

Before me stretched miles of beach filled with what used to be called "Miracle Material", a material that changed the world but also brought serious environmental, political, and health repercussions, which we didn't begin to understand until more than 50 years later.

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It's important to have the right tools for the job, whether that means boots, gloves, or cameras! 

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My very first day at 4ocean!

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After a hard day of work, I find myself in complete bliss!

Barge Day: The Weight of Single-Use Plastic.

Have you ever thought about the weight of the plastic items you use on a daily basis? At first glance, they seem lightweight.

But imagine carrying a super sack filled with them – it would weigh as much as an average person!

During Barge Days, between 180 and 200 sacks are loaded onto a large barge waiting offshore, with a total weight anywhere between 25,000 to 30,000 pounds.

This task requires five people per sack to transport them down the beach, into a panga, and out to the barge waiting offshore. 

Then, in Puerto Barrios, the plastic is unloaded, weighed, and sorted for recycling by another team.

A laborious but crucial process to finish off the day!


A member from Quetzalito moves one of the 188 sacks collected that day.


A barge arrives at the dock in Puerto Barrios after a long but rewarding day.

A Year with 4ocean: The First Line of Defense.

In over a year, I have witnessed the power of unity to combat ocean plastic pollution.

I have seen tired hands collect (literal) tons of plastic from our beaches and oceans.

But, above all, I have seen the miracle of how, little by little, our actions are making a difference.


In this photograph, two neighboring countries, Honduras and Guatemala, come together in the fight for a cleaner ocean.

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The Boom: A Shield Against Pollution.

In 2023, I was assigned to document the construction of an Elastec Boom in the Motagua River to intercept Guatemala's plastic waste.

It was a challenging project, but with dedication and teamwork, we successfully implemented it.

In just a short period of time, the boom stopped a MASSIVE amount of plastic from reach the ocean, resulting in the formation of what we called “The Plastic Island”. Why this name? Well, the plastic was so thick, you could literally walk across it! 

However, during a storm, the Motagua River's strength proved unstoppable, teaching us the power of nature's unpredictability.

We prepared for future challenges and now our boom is stronger than ever!


The plastic island, formed in 2023 shortly after operations began with the Boom in the Motagua River!

The Power Video: 15 Seconds that Moved the World.

Do you remember that viral video showing how plastic flooded Guatemala's shores?

Well, the world wouldn't have seen it if our team wasn't on the front lines, ready to start cleanup operations. 

Our Quetzalito team received news that a large monsoon had impacted the interior, sending massive amounts of plastic trash through the river systems. After carefully studying the movement of trash over the years, they knew it would soon end up on the beach. 

I received a shocking video from Mara Ortega of the Quetzalito team and instantly knew it had the power to change the world. 

We worked together to get the video out to news stations all over the world to educate people on the issue of ocean plastic pollution. 

It was a wake-up call and a painful reminder of the urgency of our mission.

Millions witnessed the devastating impact of plastic pollution and joined the cause for real and lasting change.

Sailing Towards a Bright Future.

We all have the power to make a difference in the fight against plastic. Whether by cleaning beaches, supporting technological innovations, or sharing inspiring stories.
Together we can create a world where nature thrives. I invite you to join us on this journey towards a sustainable future. 

The ocean needs us all!


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