A global campaign to fight plastic pollution.
The 2023 Global Ocean Cleanup took place on June 16–17, 2023 in partnership with Sea Turtle Week and organizations worldwide. More than 3,100 volunteers joined forces to remove 88,004 lbs (39,911 kg, or 44 tons) of trash from marine and coastal environments globally, and 7 partners created inspiring artwork from the marine debris they collected. Watch our cleanup results video for a complete recap!
Ocean Cleanup Partners & Results
We are proud to showcase the official cleanup partners for the 2023 Global Ocean Cleanup Campaign and the results of their ocean cleanup efforts. Thanks to our generous sponsors, Oceanic Society supported each organization with $2,000 to help them clean an ecologically important and polluted coastal or ocean habitat on June 16-17, 2023. Each partner also created a piece of artwork using their collected waste as part of a friendly art competition. In addition to the 8 cleanups below that were sponsored by Oceanic Society, another 34 cleanups were held worldwide during Sea Turtle Week (June 8-16) as part of the 2023 Global Ocean Cleanup. See complete cleanup results.
Location: Beqa Island, Fiji
Partner: Beqa Lagoon Initiative
The Beqa Lagoon Initiative cleaned beach and mangrove areas in Rukua and Raviravi villages on Beqa Island, Fiji. These areas border two marine protected areas that are home to coral reefs, seagrass beds, native tree species, and nursery grounds for juvenile fish and birds. Additionally, the local community depends on the ocean for subsistence, and the beaches serve as walking paths for schoolchildren, community members, and visitors. The Beqa Lagoon Initiative is a cooperative program of Pacific Blue Foundation that aims to promote nature-based solutions to alleviate poverty and enhance community development. Learn more. This cleanup was made possible by Oceanic Society's Expeditions Impact Fund.
- 65 volunteers
- 2,202 lbs of waste collected
- Most unusual item collected: Mattress
Location: Cerro Verde, La Coronilla, Uruguay
Karumbé, a non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of sea turtles and their habitats, led a cleanup in the Cerro Verde Marine Protected Area. This area is a vital feeding and developmental zone for green sea turtles in the Southwestern Atlantic Ocean, yet it faces a significant threat from plastic pollution. Studies have shown that over 70% of examined turtles in the area have ingested plastic, endangering the species' viability in the region. Karumbé organized staff and volunteers to remove plastic waste and other marine debris as part of the Global Ocean Cleanup, with the goal to help safeguard the turtles and their ecosystem. Learn more about Karumbe.
- 23 volunteers
- 80 lbs of waste collected
- Most unusual item(s) collected: Nasal weaning table for calves
Location: Daanbantayan, Cebu, Philippines
Partner: People and the Sea
People and the Sea cleaned the coastline in the municipality of Daanbantayan on Cebu Island, Philippines, where large amounts of marine debris are known to accumulate. This region is also home to a variety of sensitive marine habitats including sandy bottoms, seagrass meadows, mangroves, and coral reefs that are impacted by marine debris, among other stressors. And just 8km to the east lies Monad Shoal seamount, one of the only places in the world where endangered thresher sharks can reliably be seen. People and the Sea is a non-profit organization that supports coastal communities in the Philippines to sustainably manage and benefit from their vital marine resources. Learn more about their work.
- 65 volunteers
- 340 lbs of waste collected
- Most unusual item collected: Television
Location: East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia
Partner: Ranitya Nurlita & Wastehub
Ranitya Nurlita and her organization Waste Solution Hub (Wastehub) led an underwater cleanup in the world-renowned Komodo National Park (TNK) and a land-based cleanup in Labuan Bajo City, Indonesia. Both locations are within a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve, yet are being impacted by unmanaged municipal solid waste and high levels of water pollution. The cleanups mobilized local communities and stakeholders to help mitigate those challenges and protect the natural beauty of these remarkable locations. Wastehub is an innovative organization that focuses on circular economy and green initiatives in urban and touristic areas through an integrated systems approach. Learn more.
- 116 volunteers (including 14 scuba divers)
- 2,012 lbs of waste collected
- Most unusual item collected: Spray cans and paint cans
Location: Diani-Chale Marine Reserve, Kwale, Kenya
Partner: Olive Ridley Project
The Olive Ridley Project led a cleanup of Diani Beach in Diani-Chale Marine Reserve, Kwale County, Kenya. As a significant tourist destination, the reserve is under immense pressure from tourism, overfishing, and plastic pollution. At the same time, Diani Beach is also important for nesting green and hawksbill turtles. This cleanup was organized in partnership with local conservation organizations, youth and women community groups, and the fisherfolk community, and took place alongside the annual Diani Sea Turtle Festival. The Olive Ridley Project works throughout the Indian Ocean to protect sea turtles and their habitats through rescue and rehabilitation, scientific research, and education and outreach. Learn more.
- 105 volunteers
- 452 lbs of waste collected
- Most unusual item collected: Hair extensions
Location: Quintana Roo, Mexico
Partner: Parley for the Oceans
Parley for the Oceans cleaned up Punta Allen in the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve. This location is adjacent to the Tulum/Xcacel Xcacelito Turtle Nesting Sanctuary, and provides nesting and feeding habitat for sea turtles. Despite being a remote location, the area receives marine debris carried by currents. Properly disposing of the collected waste is challenging and expensive, requiring special effort. The Parley Global Cleanup Network is an alliance of organizations taking direct action against marine plastic pollution. Their cleanup collaborations remove plastic waste from beaches, remote islands, rivers, mangroves and high seas, and intercept ocean-bound plastics in coastal communities. Learn more.
- 56 volunteers
- 1,053 lbs of waste collected
- Most unusual item collected: Mattress
Location: Kheireddine Canal, Tunis, Tunisia
TunSea, a newly registered NGO in Tunisia, began as a Facebook group during COVID to foster exchange between scientists and the public to help make science more accessible. Its founders include scientists, engineers, students, and fishermen. Their cleanup took place at the Kheireddine Canal in Tunis, which connects the northern lagoon of Tunis to the Mediterranean Sea and plays a vital role in water renewal. It also provides breeding, nursery, and migratory habitat for many species, including the endangered European eel. However, pollution from urbanization, tourism, and fishing poses significant risks, including plastic waste and ghost fishing. Learn more about TunSea and their mission.
- 90 volunteers
- 1,102 lbs of waste collected
- Most unusual item(s) collected: Clothes & electronics
Location: San Francisco, California, USA
Led by Oceanic Society
Oceanic Society led a cleanup of Ocean Beach in San Francisco, California, our home base since 1969. The San Francisco Bay and our offshore waters are some of the most productive ocean areas on earth and are home to a wide range whales, dolphins, pinnipeds, seabirds, and even leatherback sea turtles. Yet with the Bay Area population approaching 8 million, all types of solid waste makes its way into the sea where it has the potential to harm wildlife. Oceanic Society is America's oldest non-profit organization dedicated to ocean conservation, founded in San Francisco in 1969. Learn more about our work. This cleanup was generously sponsored by Seiko.
- 17 volunteers
- 208 lbs of waste collected
- Most unusual item(s) collected: Rugs
To harness the power of visual storytelling and showcase the global impacts of plastic pollution, participating projects created artwork using the waste collected during their cleanup. The artworks were shared online and judged by a panel of artists and conservationists as part of a friendly competition, with additional funding awarded! Learn more at the link below.
We are grateful to the following sponsors of the 2023 Global Ocean Cleanup.
Seiko is proud to sponsor the Global Ocean Cleanup for the second year in a row. Their support is part of a long-term partnership with Oceanic Society that has included sea turtle conservation efforts and coastal cleanups throughout the U.S. and worldwide. Learn more about the Seiko Prospex Mission and Seiko's commitment to ocean conservation.
The 2023 Global Ocean Cleanup Campaign was organized by Oceanic Society in partnership with Sea Turtle Week and organizations worldwide. Learn more about the partners below.
Sea Turtle Week is a network of 172 partner organizations in 45 countries working to promote the sea turtle conservation during an annual event that begins on World Oceans Day, June 8, and ends on World Sea Turtle Day, June 16. SEE Turtles is the organizer of Sea Turtle Week. Learn more about Sea Turtle Week.