Here’s how the Po stops tons of plastic before it goes into the sea


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Everything we throw into a river, we know, sooner or later ends up in the sea. And if the river in question is the Po we quickly understand the extent of the problem. What to do then? Try to prevent by stopping waste while you can.

Here’s how: in just four months, more than five quintals of waste (one of them plastic only) were intercepted and stopped along the Po River by the innovative Seasweeper system, promoted by the Po d’Amare project.

How does it work? The goal was to stop the waste before it reaches the Adriatic Sea and then send it for recycling, contributing to the national plan for the prevention and reduction of waste at sea. In fact, all the plastic collected was in good condition, so it was easy to recycle it back into the production cycle, saving new raw material.

For this reason, floating polyethylene barriersthat have no impact on animals and plants were installed in Pontelagoscuro (Ferrara) 40 km from the river mouth, whose task was to block the waste so that it could be recovered.

Photo from a plastic collection in Genoa

This was made possible with the above-mentioned Po d’Amare, an initiative against garbage in the sea prepared by the Foundation for Sustainable Development, the Corepla and Castalia Consortia, in collaboration with the Po River Basin Authority, and sponsored by the City of Ferrara and Aipo. This was an initial trial and the project that will continue throughout 2019.

Alessandro Volpi


Time to Take Action is the slogan of Medplastic, the project of the Journal of Sailing and Powerboats to safeguard the Mediterranean. Join the MedPlastic Team Facebook group, there you can post news, projects, photodenunciations, videos. And come visit us at the TAG Heuer VELAFestival in Santa Margherita (May 2-5) at the Medplastic Booth! In addition, if you have structured projects to propose that you think would be useful to the “cause,” please send an email to



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