French ship 'Plastic Odyssey' which will call to Malaga port on Saturday. / SUR

Unique conservation ship to call at Malaga port

The Plastic Odyssey, a scientific vessel dedicated to collecting waste from the sea for recycling, will make its only stop in Spain at the megayacht marina

IGNACIO LILLO

The Plastic Odyssey is to dock in the Port of Malaga on Saturday 14 January at the megayacht marina (near Muelle Uno). This remarkable ship began a worldwide expedition last year with the aim of fighting against plastic pollution in the oceans. The expedition, which includes 30 ports in Africa, Latin America and Asia, has chosen Malaga for its only stop in Spain.

The French ship, part of an NGO created in 2016 by Simon Bernard, Alexandre Dechelotte and Bob Vrignaud, set sail from the port of Marseille on 1 October and, after its first three stopovers in Beirut, Alexandria and Tunis, will conclude its mission in the Mediterranean in Malaga before continuing its journey to West Africa and South America.

Plastic waste

The project aims to highlight the fact that every minute 20 tonnes of plastic are dumped into the ocean around the world, and once in the sea, most of it is no longer recoverable.

This innovative 40-metre vessel is equipped with small, environmentally friendly engines, and plastic waste can be converted into the necessary fuel in its laboratory. Crew also set up small plastic recycling plants in the countries they visit, as has already happened in Togo and Guinea. And its volunteers carry out awareness-raising, research and educational activities.

IGY Malaga Marina which operates dock one (Muelle Uno), and part of dock two, at the port, invited the ship to make a technical stopover at its facilities to prepare for crossing the Atlantic.

As part of its environmental policy, IGY Malaga Marina, majority owned by the Spanish company Ocean Capital Partners (OCP), announced that it will provide the NGO with various material resources in line with OCP’s “commitment to promote care for the marine environment".

After calling at Malaga, the ship will set sail for Tangiers before continuing on to Senegal, Guinea and Cape Verde in the coming months. Finally, it will set course for South America. In total, it will call at 30 ports on three continents over the next three years.