Earth Day Crisis
Pandemic PPE Waste in Oceans

Contributed by BSM Staff

BOSTON and KINGSTON, RI -- MOO Inc., the digital print and design company, announced a year-long collaboration with The Ocean Agency to raise awareness of how plastic-containing PPE is exacerbating the ocean pollution crisis.

The Ocean Agency and MOO are developing the Ocean Image Bank and Creative Toolkit: a rights-free collection of images sourced from the world's leading underwater photographers and filmmakers.

Impactful "seeing is believing" images of plastic pollution on marine environments spotlight the unseen environmental catastrophe unfolding on a global scale. The Image Bank and Creative Toolkit program both support the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development.

"Like great design, images have stopping power," said Richard Moross, Founder and CEO of MOO. "Sharing the downstream impact of our choices through striking photography and video is intended to prompt deep conversation among business leaders and consumers alike. We agree that wearing masks for the foreseeable future is the way to keep all of us safe. At the same time, we cannot completely overlook the health of the planet in the process. We need to design better solutions to these dual challenges."

Recent estimates are that 129 billion face masks are used globally every month. Pandemic produced plastic is overwhelming municipal recycling systems and being discarded indiscriminately – with huge volumes ending up in the ocean.1

"While seeing face coverings doing obvious harm to these pristine marine environments is heart-wrenching, the problem our cameras cannot capture is even more insidious," said Richard Vevers, Founder of The Ocean Agency. "Both reusable and single-use face masks break down into plastic microfibers, which are easily consumed by marine life and enter the food chain. The pandemic's impact on plastic pollution is a major human health concern and now under investigation by scientists."

MOO recently introduced a single-use, recyclable face covering constructed of cotton paper, a fully recycled and recyclable material made using the fabric tailings from t-shirt manufacturing. The mask contains no plastic, elastic or glue and an independent laboratory evaluation indicates it is as effective as a plastic surgical-type mask at preventing droplet expulsion and spread.

MOO is a design, technology and manufacturing company headquartered in London with US offices in Boston and Lincoln, RI. Launched in 2006, MOO aims to disrupt the trillion-dollar global print industry by combining the values of professional design with the accessibility and reach of the web.

MOO focuses on helping its customers create, share or promote their professional identity and has subsequently become one of the fastest growing print businesses in the world, with over a million businesses served in over 200 countries in the last 2 years. For more information, visit

The Ocean Agency is a US nonprofit with a unique approach to ocean conservation - supporting and accelerating action through creative communication and collaboration. The agency's efforts include creating the Netflix Original Documentary, Chasing Coral – winner of the 2018 Emmy for Outstanding Nature Documentary, bringing Google Street View underwater, and completing the XL Catlin Seaview Survey – the most comprehensive underwater photographic survey and record of coral reefs with over 1 million images captured and analyzed.

For more information, visit