All of our projects aim to protect the species-rich and healthy underwater world of the Banda Sea. Primarily, this refers to coral reefs, home to 25% of all species living in the oceans. Our projects take place together with our Indonesian partner Luminocean (Yayasan Cahaya Samudera Indonesia) on the Banda Islands in Indonesia in the Banda Sea. Here you will find coral reefs which, with over 300 hard coral species, are among the most species-rich reefs in the world. More than 500 reef fish species as well as reef sharks, hammerhead sharks, oceanic rays, turtles, dolphins and whales use the coral reefs as hiding places, feeding grounds, breeding grounds or as a resting place during migration. Since 2012, our main focus has been on preventing plastic waste from threatening these sensitive ecosystems.
Floating garbage disposal
Since April 2021 we have been with "Tirta Intan", the floating garbage disposal between the 7 inhabited Banda Islands, collecting plastic waste. The boat was financed with the support of the Indonesian Tirto Utomo Foundation and enables us to reach all the remote villages.
Thanks to the German Marine Protection Foundation, the ship's operating costs are initially covered for one year. In the long term, the company should support itself through the income from shipping plastic for recycling and through the use of diesel produced specifically by pyrolysis.
Training in recycling & waste bank
Part of the "garbage collection package" is training the villagers to separate types of plastic in such a way that our team at the Luminocean Foundation only has to shred and pack them. Some of the plastic can be sent directly to Surabaya by cargo ship, where it is recycled into new plastic pellets. The other part is brought to our pyrolysis plant and processed into gasoline, diesel and kerosene. Everything that is aluminum-coated is "upcycled" in bags and purses.
In order to give an incentive to participate, everyone who gives us carefully separated plastic receives a per kg credit in a rubbish bank passbook. The amount saved can be paid out once a month.
Education in "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle"
Of course, nothing is as sustainable as developing a green consciousness. That is why we invite children, young people and adults to beach clean-ups together. We take school classes to our recycling hall and on our rubbish collection ship and motivate them to become active themselves. We also show you how beautiful the world of coral reefs is.
In our plastic-free schools program Children and teachers also learn to completely change everyday school life in order to completely ban single-use plastic from the classes and canteens. They will be accompanied by us for a year and instructed by volunteers.
Recycling hall & pyrolysis
The Luminocean Foundation has been operating the recycling hall financed by us and the Tirto Utomo Foundation since 2019. Here plastic is sorted, cleaned and shredded. The pyrolysis system financed by Collyer Logistics is also located here, with which diesel, petrol and kerosene are obtained from plastic (PP, LDPE and HDPE). We only need the specially produced kerosene for operation. With a self-made kerosene stove, we generate so much heat that the pyrolysis process starts and stays. From 10 kg of plastic we produce up to 5 liters of diesel and 2 liters of gasoline without any additional energy input.
We send PET and color-sorted PE to Surabaya where plastic pellets are made. For this we receive compensation that is sufficient to cover transport and part of the salaries of the employees in the recycling hall.
In order to process plastic packaging sustainably, we train women's communities from different villages to sew wallets and bags. To do this, they collect aluminum-coated packaging such as from powdered drinks and instant coffees. The packaging is laboriously folded and sewn together. The idea comes from the "Greenna" initiative from Bogor. The end product is beautiful splash-proof wallets and bags that sell very well to visitors. In this way, the women get their own income and do very good for the environment in the process. The pouches are available from us on request by email. From shopping baskets to wallets and laptop bags, there is something for everyone.
As top predators, sharks are among the most important inhabitants of the oceans. In coral reefs, too, they play a major role in keeping fish stocks healthy and the food web in balance. Large schools of bow-forehead hammer sharks can be found seasonally around the Banda Islands.
We clarify the relevance of the animals and make it understandable why live sharks are worth more than dead ones and reports to the responsible fisheries authority in the event of violations. The trade in hammerhead sharks is banned in Indonesia. It is also our aim to fascinate especially young people for the animals in order to increase the motivation for the protection.
Hatta Environmental Education Station
We have been renting a small house on the beach on the island of Hatta since 2017. This serves as a contact point for children after school. Here you can borrow snorkel masks, paint, do handicrafts and be creative. Our volunteers read books with the children and teach English and environmental topics in a playful way.
During regular beach clean-ups with the children, they learn that plastic is harmful to the environment and that it cannot simply be thrown into nature. We are particularly happy to have helping hands in this project. Volunteers with teaching experience and who enjoy working with children are particularly welcome.
Marine protection zones
The establishment of marine protection zones with different usage zones has turned out to be an extremely effective concept for the recovery of coral reefs and the increase of fishing yields.
We support the locally responsible organizations Coral Triangle Center and BKKPN in setting up a network of protection zones. So far there have been two locally managed zones around the Banda Islands around the islands of Rhun and Ai and a national marine park between Banda Naira, Gunung Api, Banda Besar and Pulau Pisang. In 2021 it was decided to merge all zones into a common marine park. Hopefully this will soon include more strictly regulated zones for sustainable fisheries.