Pierre Paslier, Rodrigo Garcia Gonzalez and colleague
2022 Finalist
Build a
Waste-free World

Notpla

Country: United Kingdom

6.3bn tonnes of untreated plastic waste currently litter our streets and fill our seas. Notpla shows us that the future is not plastic, it’s seaweed.

Their Story

Global awareness of the plastic packaging problem has reached record levels in recent years and the search for a true sustainable alternative is ongoing. Could the solution lie in the seas? London-based start-up Notpla, founded by Pierre Paslier and Rodrigo Garcia Gonzalez, believe so.

Just 9% of all the plastic ever produced has been recycled and 12% has been incinerated. The rest lies in landfills or has been dumped into the oceans. Notpla is an alternative to plastic made from seaweed and plants.

It is always totally natural and entirely biodegradable, and can be used to create a range of packaging products, such as a bubble to hold liquids, a coating for food containers, and a paper for the cosmetic and fashion industry.

At the London Marathon in 2019 36,000 Notpla-made Oohos, filled with Lucozade, were handed to runners. This year, Notpla has made over 1 million takeaway food boxes for Just Eat Takeaway.com, with the potential to replace over 100 million plastic coated containers in Europe in the future. The company is continuing to research and develop new formats and solutions, with flexible films and rigid materials in the pipeline.

Notpla’s impact is wide and varied. Seaweed farmed for its production captures carbon twenty-times faster than trees, addressing one of the key causes of the climate crisis. The packaging itself means less plastic clogging our seas, reducing ocean waste. Meanwhile, farms boost fish population and seaweed farming creates new opportunities for fishing communities.

Notpla is just at the beginning of its journey, with new materials in development that could one day replace single-use plastic packaging applications across various industries and at a global scale. Today, plastic continues to pile up in our oceans and landfills, but we may now have the answer. It’s not plastic, it’s Notpla.

Other Finalists in Build a Waste-free World

Learn About the Earthshots

Protect
and Restore
Nature
2022/23 PRIORITIES

By 2030, we choose to ensure that, for the first time in human history, the natural world is growing – not shrinking – on our planet. 

This Earthshot focuses on three main areas of interest: 

  1. Protecting and managing natural carbon stores such as peatlands and intact forests
  2. Restoring forests, wetlands, and other damaged ecosystems
  3. Developing and scaling regenerative agriculture
Learn more about this earthshot

Clean Our
Air
2022/23 PRIORITIES

By 2030 we choose to ensure that everyone in the world breathes clean, healthy air – at World Health Organization standard or better. 

This Earthshot focuses on three main areas of interest: 

  1. Engaging citizens in data collection and advocacy
  2. Efforts to stop burning in agriculture and forests
  3. Transitioning to clean personal transportation
Learn more about this earthshot

Revive Our
Oceans
2022/23 PRIORITIES

By 2030, we choose to repair and preserve our oceans for future generations. 

This Earthshot focuses on three main areas of interest: 

  1. Reducing and addressing overfishing 
  2. Developing ocean ecosystem services that mitigate climate change: ‘blue carbon’ 
  3. Advancing climate change solutions with ocean benefits 
Learn more about this earthshot

Build a
Waste-free
World
2022/23 PRIORITIES

By 2030, we choose to build a world where nothing goes to waste, where the leftovers of one process become the raw materials of the next – just like they do in nature. 

This Earthshot focuses on three main areas of interest: 

  1. Moving towards waste-free food, including efforts to shift to a plant-based diet
  2. Championing waste-free fashion 
  3. Circular solutions: extending the life of goods and/or eliminating single-use goods
Learn more about this earthshot

Fix Our
Climate
2022/23 PRIORITIES

We choose to fix the world’s climate by cutting out carbon: building a carbon neutral economy that lets every culture, community and country thrive. 

This Earthshot focuses on three main areas of interest: 

  1. Transitioning to renewable energy for all
  2. Reducing methane emissions
  3. Constructing buildings fit for the future
Learn more about this earthshot
The Earthshot Prize