The life of Boyan Slat, a young man who wants to clean the oceans

At only 18, he thought of a system to clean up the oceans. Today, the whole world has its eyes on him and his great project, 'The Ocean Cleanup'. This is the life of Boyan Slat. With ChangeNOW Summit

One mission: to rid the world’s ocean of plastic

Dedicating one’s life to solve the plastic problem, that’s the choice Boyan Slat made, a Dutchman born in 1994. Passionate about science since he was a kid, he set a Guinness World Record at the age of 14 for launching 213 water rockets at the same time. Later on, he began his studies in engineering, before quitting to dedicate himself to the issue of plastic.

At that moment, the question that kept me thinking, couldn’t stop thinking about it, and then after half a year of aerospace engineering in university, I decided to drop out and start The Ocean Cleanup. After raising 2 million euros via a worldwide crowdfunding campaign, he embarked on his great project to clean up the oceans.

In 2018, he set up a first floating barrier to collect waste from the Great Pacific garbage patch off the coast of California.But after several months of trying, Boyan Slat and his teams faced many problems. In June 2019, after fixing the problems, a new design was launched into the Pacific Ocean. The objective is to collect 90% of plastic in the oceans. To this end, Boyan Slat also wishes to work on the source of pollution: the earth. 1,000 rivers are responsible for roughly 80% of the world’s plastic pollution. That’s 1% of rivers doing 80% of the damage.

Boyan Slat has already received many rewards: ONU - Champions of the Earth 2014, Forbes - 30 under 30 2016, and Reader’s Digest - European of the Year 2017. Today, the world has its eyes on him, hoping that his system will be an efficient solution to solve the plastic problem. Boyan Slat thinks transitioning the world from being non-sustainable to being sustainable is the biggest challenge of this generation.


02/06/2020 12:24 PMupdated: 06/08/2020 12:44 PM
  • 111.5k
  • 98


  • Yavna Y.
    05/11/2020 17:52

    Those kind of people should be making the headlines,not the Kardashians

  • John P.
    04/30/2020 08:40


  • Santa N.
    04/29/2020 23:30

    your a genius

  • Waleeja K.
    04/29/2020 21:37


  • Ricky M.
    04/29/2020 16:51

    Gre888 work.....

  • Roseline D.
    04/29/2020 16:45

    Thanks for your Brave

  • Linh N.
    04/29/2020 15:57

    Thank you 🙏🏻

  • Richard E.
    04/29/2020 15:05


  • Linda C.
    04/29/2020 14:51

    I make small contributions to 4 Ocean clean up for a few years now. You would not believe how much plastic there is in our oceans!

  • Dawna K.
    04/29/2020 13:05

    Heros...Perhaps when this virus has finished with us, We will rethink what Hero means? Celebrities? Sports? Nope...

  • Niki d.
    03/07/2020 07:58

    A much needed modern day environmental hero. .. brains, looks and AcTioN. He deserves recognition for his work and all the assistance and backing. Great job, Boyan Slat! We salute you and thank you.. . Keep uP the Good work! ✊

  • Jean C.
    03/01/2020 12:00

    I belong to a group in West Cape, South Africa who fill one litre plastic bottles that were thrown away, with foil and soft plastics. They get tightly stuffed and these bottles are then used with cement as bricks for building park chairs, plant beds and low cost buildings.

  • Ellee W.
    02/19/2020 20:30

  • Holly D.
    02/17/2020 15:50

    ALSO PART 2 of what we need to do... why don't we just STOP making plastics of all kinds to put an end to the cleaning and thereby save our environment.

  • Holly D.
    02/17/2020 15:49

    Agreed... This is the young person that should be Times Person of the Year, and be nominated for the Peace Nobel Prize.

  • Linda A.
    02/16/2020 23:10

    True no plastic.

  • Gertraud B.
    02/16/2020 22:11

    What a great young man! Greta could learn from him if she wasn't so buys abusing everybody!

  • Michael C.
    02/16/2020 15:07

    Absolutely beautiful thing this young man doing, unlike Greta

  • Sani Z.
    02/16/2020 11:05

    Well effort boyan great Man

  • Swagath .
    02/16/2020 10:40

    The real man