Drones are helping to clean up the world's plastic pollution


For the Beach X scenario, “we need to speak to the fishing industry and get some regulation around dumping of ghost nets,” she tells CNN. Whereas for Beach Y, “it’s about educating people not to flush things down the toilet and speaking to local sewage outlets.”

The technology allows Ellipsis to carry out a survey in a matter of minutes — much faster than the typical method on foot.

The startup, which was officially founded in 2019 following several years of research and development, has undertaken projects all over the world — from the UK coastline to the banks of the Ganges river in India.

The project that hit home most for Mackay was in the Galapagos Islands, roughly 620 miles off the coast of Ecuador. “There are coastlines there that have not changed since [Charles] Darwin set foot on those beaches, all those years ago,” she says. “The only difference — the only evidence that man exists — is in the plastic all over the beaches.”
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