United Nations
Microplastics research in lakes, rivers, seas and oceans
by By the Ocean we Unite (Non-governmental organization (NGO))
Plastic pollution has become one of the greatest environmental challenges of our time. Worldwide, on average eight billion kilos of plastics end up in our oceans every year – that is 23.000 kilos every single minute(!). Those plastics – ranging from large to microscopically small – cause devastating effects on the environment, animals and possibly ourselves. We no longer want to be on the sidelines.

By the Ocean we Unite is a Dutch foundation with charitable status (ANBI) that contributes to preventing more plastics from ending up in our oceans. Through the organization of a variety of activities – sailing expeditions, lectures, documentaries & more (see below) – we conduct research, create awareness, educate and activate people, organisations and governments to make much needed changes. By joining forces with partners worldwide we increase our outreach and positive impact. Collecting scientific data on microplastics in the water surface using the trawlshare program of the 5 Gyres Institute. Whether it be lake, river, sea or ocean, we combine the collection of data with awareness: taking the general public, companies and politicians sailing with us.

Progress reports
By 2025, prevent and significantly reduce marine pollution of all kinds, in particular from land-based activities, including marine debris and nutrient pollution
Type of commitment
  • Coastal clean-ups
  • Plastics product bans or restrictions
  • Plastics recovery/recycling/reuse
Feb 2019
Summary collected data 2016-2018
Staff / Technical expertise
Marine biologists
Basic information
Time-frame: August 2016 - February 2019
By the Ocean we Unite (NGO) 5 Gyres (NGO) Plastic Change (NGO)
Ocean Basins
  • Global
Beneficiary countries
Other beneficaries
Contact information
Thomas van Thiel, Founder, info@bytheoceanweunite.org, 00316 57 87 16 13
Almere, the Netherlands
Other SDGs
United Nations