A start-up invents a “cleaner buoy” that redirects and collects waste in rivers with the force of water

In a report published by EarthWatch Europe, we learned that 80% of the plastic waste that ends up in the oceans arrives there through the rivers that come to be thrown into them… and rivers to try to contain the problem. Plastic waste found in the oceans is mainly plastic bottles (14%), food packaging (12%) and cigarette butts (9%), the rest being cotton swabs, food boxes, straws and cups. In an attempt to combat this plastic pollution, preventing it from reaching the oceans, an Italian start-up, Mold, has invented a system of floating buoys that redirects waste, but allows the passage of boats and fish. Presentation.

Who is cleaning the river?

Vanni Covol, is the CEO and owner of the Mold company that develops this concept. He is also the owner of patent pending River Cleaning. Thanks to its ingenious river pollution control system, he received the Leone D’Oro of Veniceaward that rewards the best innovations in the country. Alex and Andrea Citon, are the founders of River Cleaning. The partnership with the inventor allows you to develop your amazing project and make it grow again.

Photo credit: Cleaning the River

The system for rivers, Cleaning Rivers

This concept consists of several floating elements that look like buoys. They are arranged diagonally in the watercourse and can intercept plastic waste and direct it to the shore. thanks to its rotating system that is underwater. The floating buoys are scalable, making it possible to adapt them to the size of the river, the flow or current of the equipped river. Furthermore, they were designed to be carried along by the passage of a boat… So, when a “chola” boat with a buoy takes it with it, passes and the buoy is repositioned after passing.

How it works ?

The buoys are 100% autonomous and rotate thanks to the force of the current. The lower part of the buoy forms a kind of helix that, when rotating, directs the garbage to the coast, where it can be collected. No energy other than the force of the current is needed for River Cleaning to work, so there is no no impact on the environment or ecosystem: the fish can go your way, no problem!

“Current solutions use boats with drainage systems, nets or barriers that temporarily block access to the river. Each installation requires specific resources and studies, which entails high costs; it is also extremely difficult to create permanent facilities, precisely because of the inconveniences involved. The solution we studied is a solution with a very low environmental impact, modular and capable of adapting to any watercourse. As part of the study for this project, physical simulation tests were performed using software, and prototypes were built and tested to verify their functionality.” River cleaning

the fuel system

River Cleaning doesn’t stop in the fight against plastic waste! Another form of “buoy” is being developed: this new innovative system could soon make it possible to proceed in the same way as with plastics, but with the oils and fuels thrown into the rivers. A parallel Plug-in will be integrated into the original system with various possibilities. River Oil, which is its name, can be an additional module made up of absorbent sponges, or more sophisticated, a suction and filtration system installed in the center of the float. The River Cleaning system can be an excellent solution for cleaning rivers and rivers… We really hope it will be installed in many parts of the world!

a buoy system to capture waste in rivers
Photo credit: Cleaning the River
river cleaning buoys
Photo credit: Cleaning the River
Several river cleaning buoys
Photo credit: Cleaning the River
Close-up of a river cleaning buoy
Photo credit: Cleaning the River


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