According to Ocean Conservancy, scientists estimate that more than 8 million metric tons of plastic is entering our ocean every year. At this rate, within a decade, our ocean would be filled with one pound of plastic for every three pounds of fish. While the need to reduce the amount of trash in the ocean is abundantly clear, the problem is complex. As we have witnessed time and time again at SecondMuse, scaling solutions to problems like the ocean trash dilemma takes serious teamwork. Through a new collaboration with Circulate Capital, Ocean Conservancy, WeWork Labs India and McKinsey.org, SecondMuse is building The Incubation Network, ecosystems of waste management and recycling innovations to increase the quality and quantity of problem solvers working to reduce trash in our ocean.
SecondMuse and Circulate Capital, the impact-focused investment management firm dedicated to financing companies, projects and infrastructure that prevents ocean plastic, have come together to launch The Incubation Network. The Incubation Network is a new initiative to accelerate solutions to ocean plastic waste by partnering with existing incubators. The Incubation Network has been developed in partnership with Ocean Conservancy, a leading ocean protection nonprofit; this initiative is supported by a new grant from the U.S. State Department. For SecondMuse, this initiative also builds on more than a decade of leadership in the global innovation space, building financially meaningful and self-sustaining economic systems we know as “economies of the future.”
In the G7 Summit announcement, Todd Khozein, co-founder of SecondMuse, gave context to the new initiative, “For the last decade SecondMuse has been using business accelerators to build economies that create social and environmental justice. In doing so we have learned that the most resilient economies are those that are inclusive and adaptive to local circumstances. For a problem as big as ocean plastics, we need precisely these kinds of robust innovation ecosystems in cities throughout the region and we are thrilled to be partnering with Circulate Capital and the Ocean Conservancy to accomplish this.”
The Incubation Network builds on recent work by SecondMuse to accelerate innovative solutions in support of ocean health, particularly in Asia and Australia. This has included the Blue Economy Challenge and subsequent Aquacelerator, an effort led by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s (DFAT) innovationXchange (iXc) to revolutionize the aquaculture industry, develop local economies across the Indian Ocean region and improve our relationship with oceans, fishing and aquatic life. More recently, this has included Out of the Blue Box, an innovation challenge and collaboration between Great Barrier Reef Foundation, University of Queensland, SecondMuse and funded by Tiffany & Co Foundation to strengthen the recovery of Australia’s iconic Great Barrier Reef.
The Incubation Network’s first project, the Surabaya Ocean Plastic Prevention Accelerator (OPPA), is also supported by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. In the spirit of collaboration championed by SecondMuse across all of our programs, this new initiative looks to leverage a diverse range of partners to provide incubation, technical assistance and capacity building.