The first Seabin marine rubbish bin in all of Northern Europe was launched and placed in test use on May 9th, 2017 in Uunisaari, off the coast of the Kaivopuisto district of Helsinki. Another floating rubbish bin will be installed in Helsinki at the turn of June.The Seabin is a floating rubbish bin that is located in the water at marinas, docks, yacht clubs and commercial ports, where it collects all floating rubbish. Water is sucked in from the surface and passes through the catch bag inside the Seabin. The water is then pumped back into the marina leaving litter and debris trapped in the catch bag to be disposed of properly.
The Seabin also has the potential to collect some of the oils and pollutants floating on the water surface. The Seabin Project's team currently uses 12-volt submersible water pumps that can utilise alternative and clean energy sources. These may include solar, wave or wind power, depending on the location and available technology. The Marine Professional had profiled the concept in the March 2016 edition of the magazine when a sponsor was being sought out.
Wärtsilä will be operating as the Seabin Project's global pilot partner for the next three years and will donate floating rubbish bins to the City of Helsinki and the Port of Helsinki for the duration of the partnership programme. These bins will be responsible for operating and maintaining the floating bins in Helsinki. Wärtsilä is also negotiating the donation of floating rubbish bins for the Turku guest harbour on the Aurajoki river and for the city of Vaasa.
The other six pilot partners are La Grande Motte in Southern France, Porto Montenegro in Montenegro, Port Adriano in Mallorca (Spain), Butterfield in Bermuda, and Safe Harbor Marinas in the United States.
Seabin Project launched its new V5 Hybrid model at the end of April. It then began installing prototypes at its pilot partners' sites. For a three-month trial period, the pilot partners will provide information about how the floating rubbish bins have functioned. Seabins are expected to go on commercial sale in August.
Wärtsilä is also continuing its long-term collaboration with the Keep the Archipelago Tidy Association, working towards a clean marine environment. In 2017, the collaboration and support will be weighted towards the beach clean-up work promoted by the Clean Beach campaign. Wärtsilä has supported the Keep the Archipelago Tidy Association's operations and coastal cleanliness since 2009.
Seabin Project's Pete Ceglinski says: "The installation of the V5 Seabin here in Helsinki marks a real turning point in the fight against plastics and littering. Wärtsilä is the first big industry entity to partner with the Seabin Project, which is a world first. We hope that this partnership with Wärtsilä inspires other big industry players to partner with smaller businesses that have big ideas for a cleaner environment."
"The cities of Helsinki and Turku together initiated the Baltic Sea Challenge ten years ago. The floating rubbish bin will raise awareness of plastic littering in the sea - one of the world's greatest environmental problems. Plastic rubbish breaks down into tiny microplastic particles that can contaminate fish and then end up being eaten by people. Cleantech and the environmental business are key sectors for the City of Helsinki. The floating rubbish bin has been developed by people who are passionate about solving problems," says Helsinki's Deputy Mayor, Anni Sinnemäki.