“Save our Ocean. We only have one.” 4Ocean, a company focusing on changing the world, one pound of trash at a time, was founded on January 4, 2017, by Alex Schulze and Andrew Cooper, two determined men with a mission: to cleanse the ocean of harmful trash, with making bracelets from recycled materials.
In an interview with the Matador Messenger, Brian, a 4Ocean staff member, traced the origins of the company and its mission.
It all started on a trashed beach in Bali, Indonesia, where the two experienced an eye-opening shock of reality. The two men had saved up enough money for a trip to remember; one of their plans was to visit a popular beach. But when they arrived, garbage was polluted this what was known as a “beautiful” beach. To their surprise, a local told them that the beach had been cleaned only a few hours ago. Trash continued to flow in from the waves. This made them realize that they needed to help.
“Alex and Andrew decided to hire boat captains and other local workers to clean the ocean and coastlines full time. In order to make the biggest impact on this global problem, they launched their efforts in places like Bali where a lot of plastic and other garbage regularly accumulates.” stated Brian. “Inspired by successful lifestyle brands that were able to build passionate followings, they decided to implement a business model that would allow them to grow quickly so they could pay workers, fund cleanups, and spread the word about the ocean plastic crisis.”
And 4Ocean bracelets was born, pledging to clean one pound of trash from the ocean for every bracelet purchase. 4Ocean uses the profits to organize cleanups, make donations to other ocean related- nonprofits, and build a sturdy infrastructure to support later growth. The 4Ocean bracelets are made from 100% recycled materials. The beads are made from recycled glass bottles and the cord is made from recycled plastic water bottles.
National Geographic reports that the numbers regarding plastic pollution in the ocean are “staggering.” “There are 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic debris in the ocean. Of that mass, 269,000 tons float on the surface, while some four billion plastic microfibers per square kilometer litter the deep sea.” Since 2017, 4Oceans has collected 6,752,324 pounds of trash removed from the ocean. Each day thousands of tons of trash and waste are dumped into the oceans of the world. “Ocean pollution kills more than one million sea birds each year. Discarded fishing nets kill approximately 300,000 dolphins and porpoises every year,” reports SoftSchools.
How we can help:
“The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it,” remarked Robert Swan, polar explorer, environmentalist and the first man ever to walk unsupported to both the North and South Poles. Imagine a ocean full of trash. In fact there are already bodies of smaller water polluted with garbage. Brian says, “Reduce your use of single-use plastic and seek alternatives such as reusable water bottles and shopping bags. It’s going to take some time to clean the ocean, although we can’t do this alone. As we work to increase our company, we hope we can count on you to help us clean the ocean— we’re all in this together.”