A couple of years ago while visiting my grandparents in New York, I went to an exhibition on climate change that both inspired and deeply moved me. When I returned to Barcelona, I had hundreds of ideas in my head: my Mediterranean was getting worse, all because of man-made waste.

I felt that the sea couldn’t breathe as it used to so, in 2019 I created the Jelly Cleaner, this utensil you see here. I didn’t create it as an engineering project, I’ve never studied engineering, but rather I wanted to make something simple and easy that everyone can make from the everyday materials they have at home.

It’s really quite simple, it’s basically a floating filter, made from recycled plastic water bottles, and old ballet tights that I had lying around. Water enters the large mouth of the center bottle where it passes through the fine mesh filter of the stockings and any microplastics or other garbage gets trapped. The two smaller outside bottles act to balance it and for flotation.

 You can use it to clean microplastics whenever you go out to the sea, lakes or rivers.  When you’re done, just turn the stocking inside out, clean out the garbage, recycle what you can, rinse and re-use!

 The most important part of the Jelly Cleaner for me is its ability to RAISE AWARENESS. It also represents the idea that every act, every step, no matter how small, can make a big difference.

How to create your own Jelly Cleaner 



Olivia Mandle and Ocean Cats RowingTogether with the Ocean Cats, united for a single goal: fight against microplastic.

It was amazing to meet up with a sister of my "Jelly Cleaner", pulled by a boat being rowed manually by the Ocean Cats, a super creative boat complete with solar panels and a joke-telling crew. Led by Martí, he and his crewmates made me laugh and were taken by surprise by my Jelly Cleaner, small and recycled, but powerful and effective! 

Olivia Mandle and her Jelly Cleaner

For more information about the 2020 Mediterranean Cleanup, see the video below or click here for photos.

Here is the video from the 2019 Mediterranean Cleanup and click here for photos.