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Turning the Tide on Ocean-Bound Plastics 

First Luxury Travel Company to Partner with Ocean Co.

 How Your Journey is Helping to Save the Ocean

Your Positive Impact on Ocean-Bound Plastic

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UBUNTU TRAVEL BOTTLES  

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OCEAN-BOUND PLASTIC COLLECTED

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LOCAL COMMUNITY SUPPORT

Ubuntu Travel’s Collective Impact

Last Updated March 2024

Luxury Big Five & Beach Safaris 

Beachside honeymoon dinner in Tanzania

Tanzania & Zanzibar

From $14,000 per person
Stanley & Livingstone, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Honeymoon Cape Town to Victoria Falls

From $105,000 per person
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Simply The Seychelles

From $15,950 per person

Frequently asked Questions from Ocean Co. 

Plastic Pollution and Ocean Health

Plastic Pollution and Ocean Health: Ocean health is crucial for all ecosystems and living organisms, and plays a vital role in regulating Earth’s climate. It not only provides a habitat for our marine life, but supports the livelihoods of millions through fisheries, energy, tourism and more. Over half of our oxygen we breathe is produced by the oceans, making it essential to our existence. However, plastic pollution is a growing threat to ocean health – each year, millions of kg of plastic waste ends up in the oceans, causing a multitude of problems. Harmful chemicals can leach into the water, creating a toxic environment to plant and marine life. The presence of plastics can also enter the food chain, causing injury, disease and death to many species.

What is Ubuntu Travel doing to support the Ocean’s Health

At Ubuntu Travel, our collaboration with Ocean Co. is dedicated to preserving oceans by preventing plastic pollution. We pledge to procure 64% recycled water bottles and coffee flasks from Ocean Co., supporting the collection of ocean-bound plastic. Additionally, for every traveler who chooses a safari with us, we fund the collection of 35 pounds of ocean-bound plastic, aiding plastic collectors and centers in Mombasa, Kenya. Together, we’re making strides in ocean conservation and community support.

Plastic is a big problem for the environment, and it gets worse by mismanaged waste, illegal dumping and insufficient infrastructure. Ocean Co. pay for coastal communities to collect plastic that could end up in the ocean and waterways, and they set up facilities where locals can recycle it, especially in areas where there aren’t sufficient ways to get rid of plastic waste. Ocean Co. focus on places near the coast because a lot of the plastic that ends up in the ocean starts out there, and gets transported by river streams. And for the people who live near all this plastic, it makes life harder because it pollutes their water, air, and land. By paying locals to gather up the plastic, we stop it from floating around and breaking into microplastics that harm marine life. This helps keep the ocean cleaner and safer for everyone. With the help of our community, Ocean Co. has already kept over 12M kg of plastic out of the ocean, and we’re working hard to do even more.

What is Ocean-Bound Plastic?

We define ocean-bound plastic as material that is prone to enter waterways, and therefore we focus collection within 50km of waterways or coastal areas. Our partners collect almost every kind of plastic type, and ensure that it is given a useful second life. High value plastics are recycled, low value plastics are up-cycled, and hard to recycle plastics are co-processed.

Ocean Co.’s Impact  

Plastic collection process: how is the plastic collected and what happens to the plastic

Ocean Co. operates within various coastal locations in Kenya, India, Indonesia, Brazil and Egypt. Some of these countries are listed in the top 10 most polluted oceans, however the paradox is that these countries do not consume the most plastic. Plastic waste ends up in their coastlines because of their high rainfall, geographical size, poor waste management systems, ocean currents, and imported waste from developed countries. The support from our Ocean Co. clients funds these coastal communities to collect plastic waste in exchange for money. They also gain access to social benefits such as healthcare, education and skills training, helping to steer waste collectors communities away from social marginalisation. We regularly update our stakeholders on the latest community projects that positively impact our collectors, and how their funding has been distributed. For some of our projects, we are able to fund the construction of material recycling facilities (MRF), which enable communities to recycle high-value plastics into everyday products, and down-cycle low-value plastics into longer-life materials. With the help of Ocean Co. clients, we fund the introduction of e-tricycles, and training, which allows collection workers to transport the plastic waste to our MRFs. Once the plastic is collected and recycled for a new purpose, our partners sell these products on to organisations across the globe.

Why does Ocean Co. collect ocean-bound plastic, rather than ocean plastic?

If your sink was overflowing, would you turn off the tap, or just start mopping the floor? Globally, our approach to plastic waste has been like the latter, meanwhile more plastic continues to flow into our seas. At Ocean Co. we want to turn off the tap by collecting plastic before it leaks into the water. We absolutely support the efforts of organisations who aim to retrieve plastic already leaked into our oceans, as together we can tackle the wider issue of plastic pollution and ocean health.

How does Ocean Co. ensure that plastic collectors receive a fair wage?

Ocean Co. has chosen three partners to work with based on a number of criteria, but namely their attention and efforts towards improving the livelihoods of collectors. These organisations do so by ensuring wages are regulated, all different types of plastic are collected, and workers can access social support, all of which are audited by leading third party certification bodies like WFTO, EcoVadis, and Verra. Ocean Co. also conduct on-going due diligence for all partners to ensure evidence is provided against criteria such as this, as well as working alongside our partners to support continuous improvement.