Bruce and Anne Kania have patented a system using shredded PET plastic bottles (one of the more difficult plastics to recycle) to construct floating islands that are planted with vegetation. The man-made islands had to be porous enough so that lots of water could flow through for cleaning, and yet solid enough so that plants could grow on them.
Shredded PET Bottles
Bruce, who is 57, is an inventor and entrepreneur who worked in prosthetics, textiles and sporting goods (he invented a broadhead arrow). Then, about a decade ago, he came up with the idea of turning plastic trash into man-made floating islands that can clean polluted water, spur the growth of fish, provide species habitat and sequester carbon.
About 400,000 islands have been built using Floating Island's intellectual property. … this year the company has commissioned four islands that are more than 20,000 sq. ft. Two of the biggest were bought by the Army Corps of Engineers and located in Dutchy Lake, Oregon, and Sheepy Lake, California, to act as nesting habitat for Caspian terns. The goal was to get the terns to locate away from the Columbia River, where they were preying on migrating baby salmon. (The designers placed 250 tern decoys on the island to lure the birds.) Early results are promising.