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Earthshot vs plastic: meet the people fighting plastic pollution on earth day 2024

Earthshot Prize vs Plastic: Earth Day 2024

Celebrated every year on April 22, Earth Day is a global event organised by our incredible Global Alliance Partner,

Dedicated to environmental protection, it’s a day when millions of people around the world are encouraged to come together to participate in activities that help to protect the natural world.

This year’s theme is ‘Planet vs Plastics’, which aims to raise awareness of the health and environmental risks of plastic pollution and push for a significant reduction in the production of single-use plastics and wasteful industrial practices.

A goal which directly aligns with our Earthshot to Build a Waste-Free World, where the waste product from one process is used as the raw material for the next.


Earthshot vs plastic

Today, just 9% of all the plastic ever produced has been recycled and only 12% has been incinerated. The rest lies in landfills or has been dumped into the oceans.

Despite, these scary-looking statistics, hope isn’t lost. There are clever people right now around the world working on solutions to tackle plastic pollution head-on.

In fact, some of our very own Earthshot Prize Finalists are leading the way in the movement towards a waste-free world.

Let’s take a look at their amazing work!

The Great Bubble Barrier

80% of plastic waste in our oceans comes from land and the highways for this are our rivers. Finalists from 2022, The Great Bubble Barrier, decided to do something about it with a solution that’s in their name… bubbles!

Using a perforated tube with air flowing through, it creates a barrier of bubbles that allows fish to swim through but plastic waste to be pushed to the side for collection.

Find out more


Polycotton is a blend of cotton and polyester, a kind of plastic, which makes it a tough fabric to recycle and a contributor to over half of all textile waste.

Finalists from 2023, Circ, have developed a solution that separates these fibres, allowing them to be recycled and made into new materials.

Find out more


Tyres cause harm to our health and the planet. Their friction on roads releases microplastics and other harmful particulate matter into the air causing pollution.

Enso, Clean our Air 2023 Finalists, are leading innovation in the electric vehicle space to make low-emission tyres accessible to all.

Find out more

The City of Amsterdam

Building a circular economy means building a system where waste is eradicated, and local livelihoods are thriving.

The City of Amsterdam, 2022 Earthshot Prize Finalists, took a radical step by becoming the first city to commit to building a circular economy. By 2030, the city will halve its use of new raw materials and by 2050, its economy will be fully circular.

Find out more


Imagine a world where plastic is no longer needed and instead, we use seaweed!

Winners of The Earthshot Prize in 2022, Notpla, are working to make this a reality. By using natural materials like seaweed, Notpla are replacing plastic with packaging that’s edible, compostable, and even dissolvable so that it can disappear back into nature without any harmful traces.

Find out more

The challenge of plastic pollution is daunting, but the solutions are within reach.

Our Finalists are paving the way in industries notorious for waste, from fashion to automotive to municipal planning.

Let’s rally behind these innovators, supporting and amplifying their efforts to forge a cleaner, healthier planet for generations to come.

Interested in joining the fight against plastic pollution? Visit to find out how you can contribute to the Planet vs. Plastics movement.

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