A 1,6-million square kilometre garbage dump in the Pacific Ocean is a truism of the way we live and serious efforts are being made to clean up the plastic in the ocean with Kia at the forefront of this and ready to recycle the waste into its EV models.

Kia’s partner, The Ocean Cleanup, recently bagged record a 55-tonne haul from the ocean and recycling of the captured plastic will begin shortly and Kia will use a proportion of the material in future models.

Already, Kia has successfully implemented more than 30 sustainable solutions in various product areas, including fabrics and carpets using recycled PET, bio-based alternative leather, and BTX-free paint.

In the case of the EV9, the brand’s seven-seat all-electric SUV flagship model, for example, upcycled waste, including fishing nets retrieved from the ocean, is used to create the vehicle's floor carpets. The components used in the construction of the EV9 made from recycled plastic and bio-based, eco-friendly materials weigh approximately 34 kg.

Immediately after bringing the record haul to shore, The Ocean Cleanup announced the introduction of its new System 03 technology. Almost three times larger than System 002, System 03 can capture much larger quantities of plastic at a lower cost per kilogramme removed on a continuous year-round basis.

It also features more sophisticated environmental monitoring and safety technology, such as a new Marine Animal Safety Hatch designed to protect marine life. This scale-up marks the next phase towards The Ocean Cleanup’s objective of removing 90% of floating ocean plastic by 2040.

Charles Ryu, Senior Vice President and Head of the Global Brand & CX Division at Kia says: “The record catch of plastics brought to shore by The Ocean Cleanup for recycling is tangible proof of how technology can deliver sustainable solutions at scale. Kia’s partnership with The Ocean Cleanup demonstrates the brand’s commitment to having a positive impact.

“Initiatives such as this one perfectly align with Kia’s transition to a sustainable mobility solutions provider and our Plan S strategy, through which we embrace the needs of our customers and the protection of our environment by acting as a responsible corporate citizen.”

Colin Windell – proudly CHANGECARS