Vital Ocean is a new, solution driven, implementation focused organization working on the front line, hand-in-hand with cities and local waste partners to build clean, circular waste systems that collect and recycle all plastic waste in the places where it matters most. Our efforts directly reduce ocean pollution and support other change makers around the world with tools and tactics to be successful.


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Our mission is to build a coordinated movement to sustainably reduce ocean plastic pollution by 50% by 2025, and ultimately end all ocean plastic by 2035, starting in Indonesia.


Plastic consumption is forecasted to grow 50% in ten years to reach 380 million tons annually by 2025. At the same time, ocean plastic is expected to grow from today's 13 million tons a year to 20 million tons a year by 2025, giving us a rapidly expanding target. 

This is an extraordinary time to take actions of consequence.

We're past the point of preventing plastic pollution, but future damage can still be minimized. There is a dire need to slow, and eventually eliminate, ocean plastic pollution around the globe. While the ultimate solution will be an economy designed to eliminate waste and pollution through product and process innovation, we cannot afford to sit idly by while waiting for this to happen. Good, locally appropriate, clean, circular, zero waste management solutions are needed now to stem the tide on plastic pollution, and reduce global ocean plastic levels by 50%.


Today, around the world, numerous inspiring initiatives address pieces of the marine debris challenge from successful local refill bottle campaigns, to campaigns to end illegal dumpsites. While every effort adds up to make an important impact, marine debris levels continue to steadily rise against growing plastic consumption. We need to approach this challenge in a new way. Until individual initiatives, funding, and policy can be coordinated, we will continue to make only incremental progress.


We need a more collaborative approach that pairs proven tools and tactics, cities, local changemakers, funding and decision makers that can create an environment that incentivizes and de-risks circular waste management projects and investment.  City by city, together, we need to build clean, circular waste systems that collect and recycle or reprocess all plastic waste.


And when we get this right, everyone wins. Thousands of collection and sortation jobs emerge. Waste picker livelihoods are protected and their health, as well as the health of the greater community, improves. Operators and recyclers have greater quantities of secure feedstock in the format and quality they need. Investors can be guaranteed that their funds will accomplish a reduction of plastic waste leakage into the ocean. Greenhouse gases, especially from methane and black carbon, are minimized, and waste is beneficially diverted from landfill. Marine life are protected. And everyone has an opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to one of the most important challenges of our time.


Human health


Maritime economies

  • Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) estimates ocean plastic pollution costs APEC member tourism, fishing and shipping industries $1.3 billion in lost revenue 

  • Dumping waste directly into waterways can exacerbate flooding with economic consequences 

  • Building clean, circular, zero waste systems however creates new jobs, and improves health and working conditions of countless people working in the waste sector

Marine life health

The environment


"When you do nothing you feel overwhelmed and powerless. But when you get involved you feel the sense of hope and accomplishment that comes from knowing you are working to make things better." 

- Maya Angelou