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Recycled Island Foundation

The Recycled Island Foundation (RIF) is a young organization that was brought to life to find an active

approach to the worldwide plastic pollution in open waters. RIF aims at the retrieval of debris in rivers

and river mouths, sustainable re-use of plastics, organizing clean ups, creating awareness and education.

Recycled Park is realized with the support of BRG (Existing Rotterdam Territory), Citylab 010,

Rijkswaterstaat (Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management), Cargill, Van Der Vorm Real Estate,

Audi Environmental Foundation and all the partners that physically contributed to the realization.

Recycled Park

On July 4th the first Recycled Park will open in the Rotterdam harbour. Floating debris from the rivers and

port is retrieved and recycled to create a floating park of 140m2.

The aim of this iconic Recycled Park is to illustrate that recycled plastic from the open waters is a

valuable material and suitable for recycling. By re-using the retrieved plastics and by producing building

blocks with them, the plastics receives new value. As an extra the building blocks create a new green

area; Recycled Park. Floating green structures are a plus for the city and have an ecological function in

the river as habitat for micro and macro fauna as snails, flatworms, larva, beetles and fish.

Plastic soup

Plastic litter is a structural problem in open waters. Via rivers a large part of the plastics ends up in our

seas and oceans, where it becomes part of the worldwide pollution. Initiator Ramon Knoester of the

Recycled Island Foundation explains: “The water is in many cities the lowest point, resulting in the

unfortunate accumulation of litter in our rivers. When we retrieve the plastics directly in our cities and

ports we actively prevent the further growth of the plastic soup in our seas and oceans. Rotterdam can

set an example for port cities every where in the world. The realization of the building blocks in recycled

plastics is an important step towards a litter free river”.

Litter Traps

In Rotterdam the Recycled Island Foundation developed three passive Litter Traps to efficiently take the plastics from the New Meuse (Nieuwe Maas). During a trail period of 1,5 year the Litter Traps are tested, monitored and optimised. This resulted in a good working system, that works efficiently even with heavy ship traffic, tidal changes and different wind directions. The Litter Traps catch the plastics by using the existing stream of the river en keep the plastics inside even when the direction of the stream turns.

Floating green structures

To stimulate the retrieval of litter the Recycled Island Foundation looked into the potential of re-use and

recycling. In collaboration with the Rotterdam municipality we found the potential in floating green

structures. In this way we can stimulate the ecology in the Rotterdam harbour. With the recycled plastics

we construct hexagon shaped building blocks where on, at and in new vegetation grows. Birds, fish and

micro-organism find food, breeding ground and shelter in the floating park. Through the park runs a

small canal about half a meter deep; small fish and birds find here shelter and the space to grow before

entering the deeper waters.

For more information of Recycled Park: http://recycledpark.com/

Photo: Floating Park just realized

Photo: Recycled park improves (water) ecology

Photo: sorting waste

Photo: Litter Trap Rotterdam

Photo: making of Recycled Park