4ocean Reaches
New Heights!
35 Million!

Mikaela Walsh, 4ocean Research Analyst

Did you hear the great news? 35 Million pounds of trash removed from our oceans!

4ocean is reaching new limits and has successfully removed 35,000,000 pounds of plastic debris and trash from our waterways! Our company started in 2017 when two surfers took a trip to Bali and saw the immense amount of plastic debris floating in the ocean. This discovery highlighted the seriousness of plastic pollution and acted as a catalyst, creating 4ocean’s mission to end the oceanic plastic crisis. To fulfill this mission, the two surfers devised an idea to sell recycled bracelets to fund cleanup missions worldwide. The plastic debris collected by our captains and crews is repurposed and made into beautiful bracelets by our artisans in Bali. In just seven years, 4ocean has removed 35 million pounds of trash from our oceans.

 Let’s break that number down into something more tangible!

35,000,000 pounds of plastic is equivalent to

  • 195 Million Plastic Water Bottles
  • 37.8 Billion Plastic Straws
  • 2.9 Billion Plastic Bags
  • 13.2 Billion Rubber Balloons
  • 2.6 Billion Plastic Forks
  • 3.5 Billion Plastic spoons
  • 882 Million Toothbrushes
  • 175 Million Two-Liter Bottles
  • 1.1 Billion Soda Cans
  • 7.1 Billion Bottle Caps
  • 2.1 Billion Styrofoam Cups

*These calculations are based on the average mass of commonly used items.


Our Co-Founder, Alex Schulze says, “When we started 4ocean, we had no idea the size, the magnitude, and the impact we would have as a business. It’s incredible to see the momentum we have been able to build and grow, and ultimately be able to fund not only the removal of plastic and trash from the ocean but also to employ these captains and crews worldwide.” The impact of having such a worldwide benefit on local economies and providing full-time jobs to these local captains and crews is one of the most impactful parts. Working with the team and getting out in the ocean is one of his favorite things! Upon hearing the magnitude of the impact 4ocean is making for our ocean, across all teams, it brought a sense of accomplishment. The lifespan of plastic debris is much longer than you may have presumed. These synthetic plastics can stay on Earth for up to 500 years. So you may be asking, what happens with all this plastic we remove? 

Recycling these plastic items is our highest priority. Depending on where this plastic pollution is collected, the plastic will go to our facilities. This is where the plastic debris gets weighted, documented, and photographed and then gets sorted by the type, color, and condition of the plastic. This plastic will then undergo different recycling protocols based on the waste management systems in these countries. There are a few different destinations for this debris, whether it goes to one of our partners, gets made into different products, or is upcycled into building materials. We have started co-processing some of the plastic that does not fit into any of the recycling criteria, meaning, instead of using fossil fuels, we have been able to turn this plastic waste into energy! This process is used for cement kilns and creating cement bricks that can be used for other building materials. The most important aspect of removing this trash from the ocean is recycling and creating less of a need for new plastic.

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4ocean Signature Bracelet

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Plastic debris is suffocating our ocean ways. The newest estimates show that only 5-6% of plastic is recycled annually. Furthermore, up to 95% of plastic debris is not recycled and consequently exists on the earth's surface longer than intended. This includes the plastic that is placed in the recycling bins as they are not always properly disposed of after the fact. This leads to plastic debris piling up in the landfills and even worse, entering the natural habitats and ocean systems. Plastic debris has been shown to negatively affect all forms of marine life. In some instances, these negative effects have proven to be fatal. Plastic is not biodegradable but will rather break down into smaller pieces of plastic. Plastic particles that are less than five millimeters are referred to as microplastics. Microplastics have been found in human beings and almost all forms of aquatic life.

Plastic is creating chaos in the environment. Luckily, 4ocean has consistently surpassed its goals in ocean clean-up and is determined to further its success. Plastic debris is found across all coastlines, even in remote locations such as the Galapagos islands which are conserved for science. In the middle of the Pacific Ocean, there is a massive collection of plastic debris known as ‘the Great Pacific Garbage Patch,’ estimated to be twice the size of Texas. This region is full of plastic debris and abandoned fishing gear, both of which are devastating the Pacific Ocean's marine life. Without a doubt, plastic pollution is causing detrimental effects across the globe, but your support makes it possible to reverse these effects!

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For every bracelet or item purchased from our website, you can help fund our captains and crews across the globe. Our captains and crews are dedicated to cleaning the ocean and marine life conservation. The ocean is one big body of water that has enormous effects on human life and the well-being of our planet. To tackle the root of this issue, we need to strive to reduce single-use consumption. Thank you to all our supporters who have allowed us to continue working to end the oceanic plastic crisis. Hearing that 35 million pounds of plastic debris has successfully been removed from our oceans, rivers, and coastlines further inspires our clean-up mission. “Its’s 35 million, it’s an amazing accomplishment, but we are just getting started!” -Alex Schulze. We are one step closer to ending the oceanic plastic crisis thanks to you! This fight is far from over, and we won’t stop until our oceans are clean!

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4ocean Signature Bracelet

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