Support the Seabin Citizen Science Program and Ocean Health Lab

Charity: Seabin Foundation
Location: Australia
Genre: Education
The Seabin Foundation is dedicated to ocean health, with an emphasis on marine plastics litter prevention and education through data analysis, science and community engagement using the Seabin technology.

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Plastic pollution in marine environments is a major issue, affecting nearly every waterway across the world. More and more waste is discarded by people inappropriately, which results in pollution finding its way into the rivers and oceans of the world, severely impacting marine life, the environment and resulting in a myriad of other impacts that also affect humans via the food chain. The more plastic that enters our oceans, the greater the issue is, and the more difficult it is to restore the health of these marine environments to an acceptable quality. The oceans need our help.

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How Seabin Foundation’s project addresses this problem:

By growing a community of dedicated volunteers and of in-house scientists, we are able to gather regular information about what Seabins are collections from over 100 locations around the world and each Seabin City Programs. The City Programs are currently established in the Sydney Harbour and in Los Angeles. From the data, we understand the source of the problem and can act on it with stakeholders and communities. Citizen scientists also become ambassadors for the cause, as they experience firsthand the issue of marine pollution, and can share the information around them, supporting behaviour change through care for the marine environment they love.

The aim is to generate targeted campaigns and changes in policies, incentives, legislation and behaviour as a response to the factual information gathered. Reports are generated from a growing database of information about what Seabins are collecting. We are also building an online dashboard for the community to access data in real time. Baseline data can then be monitored compared to new data, as changes are occurring, to see if effective changes are in place.

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These are ongoing efforts from the Seabin Foundation, which requires significant funding to maintain its programs and initiatives.

  • Each Seabin unit requires $37,000/year for the hardware, bi-monthly servicing by Seabin Enviro technicians, daily empties and general maintenance for longevity in marine waters.
  • Data reporting (quarterly + annual) for each City Program of 30 Seabins, such as in the Sydney Harbour, costs $45,000/year
  • Adding water quality sensors (pH, Dissolved oxygen, Conductivity and Temperature) to obtain additional data on the water surrounding Seabins costs $15,000/Seabin unit for the hardware, installation, ongoing calibration, IoT connectivity and data analysis
  • The 5 inhouse scientists generating reports and coordinating the database and data analysis, inductions, protocols and methodologies, educational visits/excursions and STEM Lessons, and dissemination of recommendations amount to $300,000/year.

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