Aims of the association

The environmental organization One Earth – One Ocean e.V. (oeoo) is, according to its statutes, concerned with environmental protection, in particular water and coastal protection.

It has set itself the goal of developing and implementing a concept for ridding waters worldwide of plastic waste, as well as oil and pollutants.

In the multi-stage concept of “Maritime Waste Collection,” plastic waste is collected by special waste collection ships and then recycled or converted back into oil. In this way, around 800 liters of oil could be recovered from one ton of pre-sorted plastic waste.

In addition, the association is involved nationally and internationally in the areas of oil purification, microplastics, as well as in research, education and documentation on the topic of marine litter, in order to achieve a change in people’s behavior with regard to (plastic) waste in the medium to long term.

Since 2018, One Earth – One Ocean e.V. is an official partner of the UN environmental campaign #CleanSeas. In February 2017, the UN #CleanSeas started with the aim to engage governments, the public, civil society and the private sector as partners in the fight against plastic waste in the oceans.


Founding story / History

Günther Bonin, former Munich IT entrepreneur and enthusiastic sailor since his youth days, was annoyed by the ever-increasing amounts of plastic waste which he found on his sailing trips even in the most remote locations.

According to own research, plastic waste was only explored on a selective basis, and there were no technologies to recover plastic waste from the sea. He decided to let his IT company rest and deal intensively with solving this global problem.
In 2011, he founded the environmental organization One Earth – One Ocean eV, based in Munich and built up a team consisting of marine biologists and experts like Thomas Hahn, who co-ordinated the victory of the America Cup at BMW Oracle, or metal constructor Michael Lingenfelder, and other volunteers, to create concept of “marine litter cleanup” for the cleaning of world-wide water bodies from the plastic waste.


Meanwhile, the focus has expanded and oeoo is also working on bringing oil and chemicals out of the water.

First prototypes of the SeeHamster, smaller ships for garbage collection, have been used since 2012 in inland waters and the Baltic Sea.

In June 2015 the SeeKuh was the first prototype of a large coastal seaport.

It took three years to collect and implement the donations, and in autumn 2016 the ship was launched in a shipyard in Lübeck. Since 2017, the SeeKuh has been in use worldwide, including six months in Hong Kong in 2018.

In 2018 oeoo opened an office and laboratory in Kiel/Germany. Meanwhile the association is represented with offices in Munich-Garching, Hamburg, Kiel, Hong Kong, Battambang/Cambodia and Rio/Brazil.

Long-term projects for the removal of plastic waste from water bodies are currently underway in Cambodia (since 2018), Brazil (since 2019), Indonesia and Egypt (since 2020). The SeeHamster waste collection vessels are used for these projects.

Another SeeKuh vessel will be completed and start its work in mid 2020.



Award of the German federal award ecodesign, the highest national award for ecological design in Germany, in the category concept for the waste recycling ship SeeElefant. From more than 300 submissions, the jury chose the SeeElefant and the concept of Maritime Waste Collection as this year’s winner.

The prize, which is awarded annually by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, honours innovative products, services and concepts that possess outstanding ecological quality, an innovative approach and high design quality.


One Earth – One Ocean e.V. is awarded the Special Prize of the Gruner & Jahr SPA AWARDS 2019.

Günther Bonin receives the Special Prize of the Gruner & Jahr Spa Award 2019 from Brigitte Huber, editor-in-chief of BRIGITTE magazine, for her work against plastic waste in the oceans worldwide at a festive gala in Baden-Baden. In recent years, the Special Prize has been awarded to personalities such as 83-year-old oceanographer and environmentalist Dr. Sylvia Earle for her work in preserving the oceans, Franziska van Almsick for her social commitment and Prof. Dr. Michael Braungart for his commitment to eco-effectiveness (design concept cradle to cradle).


Nomination for the Ocean Tribute Award 2018 in the category Society. The award, presented by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation in cooperation with the German Sea Foundation and the water sports fair boot Düsseldorf, honors the most innovative and sustainable ideas on the subject of marine conservation.


The Deurex oil-binding cotton PURE, with which oeoo has been helping to eliminate oil contamination in Nigeria since 2015, was awarded was awarded the European Inventor Award 2017 in Venice in June 2017.

The European Patent Office awards this award every year for outstanding inventions. oeoo has been mentioned as a reference in this context.


Nomination of the SeeKuh for the Bundespreis ecodesign, the highest state award for ecological design in Germany. The jury nominated 26 projects, including the SeeKuh, from more than 350 submissions.

The award, which is presented annually by the Federal Ministry of the Environment, distinguishes innovative products, services and concepts that have an outstanding ecological quality, innovative approach and high design quality.


One Earth – One Ocean e.V. is honored with the prestigious GreenTec Award 2013 for its “marine litter cleanup” concept. The GreenTec Awards are Europe’s largest environmental and economic award, in which the most innovative green products, projects and environmental technologies are awarded annually in various categories.

Our Team

In addition to Günther Bonin, the founder of OEOO, and a core team of close-knit employees in and around Munich and in Northern Germany, there are additional members who support the work of the association in an ideal, financial and/or active way.

Dr. Rüdiger Stöhr


Microbiologist and teacher for biotechnology / biology from Kiel, member since 2012

Why join oeoo?

When Günther and I were ‘gossiping into the evening sky’ above the Kiel harbor, it was immediately clear that we were swinging on a wavelength. From the first small joint ideas, projects such as “Jugend forscht”, microplastic monitoring, oil wool PURE, plastic filters, etc. emerged, and there is a very exciting association work, for which I am enthusiastic.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

As an oeoo employee, I am responsible for the microplastic project. I hold lectures, workshops and give internships on the subject of plastic in the sea. I am interested in cooperations in which the plastic problem is researched and presented in a responsible manner.

Bettina Kelm


Environmental Education Officer, since 2013 honorary member of OneEarth-OneOcean e.V.

Why join oeoo?

I am a freelance journalist for travel and nature and I live in Bichl/Bavaria. In the Gulf of Panama 2010, I was shocked by how turtles had to deal with plastic waste and spontaneously wrote a comprehensive article about plastic in the sea. In 2012, I met Günther and his concept of “marine litter cleanup”. From the Panama-reportage, a photo lecture about plastic waste was made.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

Since 2013, I have lectures on schools and environmental education events all over Germany (focus on Bavaria). Depending on the age of the audience, there are different lecture concepts, from primary school pupils to adults. From the pollution of the Pacific Ocean off Panama, the curve stretches over the global situation in the world’s oceans to the extent that our German waters are already heavily loaded.

More information and contact

Dr. Harald Frank


Economist, 56 years old, strategic partner of One Earth – One Ocean e.V.

Why do I work for oeoo?
Climate change, the loss of biodiversity and the littering of the oceans require new ways of thinking and solutions in economy and politics. Without dogmatism, but with a lot of expertise and pragmatism, Günther Bonin and his team implement ideas and projects in the field of water protection. In 2009, David Suzuka, Canadian biologist and winner of the Alternative Nobel Prize, called for “Give back the eco to the economy”. Economy and ecology are a perfect match in many areas. We can demonstrate this in particular with the oeoo large-scale project “Marine Litter Cleanup” and the SeeElefant pilot system.

Area of responsibility and consulting fields for oeoo

Project development & project management, strategy, business analyses, financing and subsidies. I am team member for the implementation concept of the “Marine Litter Cleanup” and the SeeElefant pilot system.

Daniel Scheler


oeoo Project Manager in the Philippines

Why do I work for oeoo?

It is high time that there was less talk and more action. That’s why I decided to take action and become part of the solution. oeoo actively tackles the problem where it arises. In contrast to some projects with good approaches but little future perspective, the holistic concept of ‘Maritime Waste Collection’ is the most sensible one to get on top of the plastic floods in the long run. The components of science and education complete the picture and are, in my eyes, the only way to sustainably reduce the amount of waste entering our oceans.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

As Project Manager in the Philippines, I will be working with a local team to drive the Manila Bay clean-up project forward. Among other things, the Circular Explorer will be stationed here for at least 3 years. On site, I will coordinate the operational procedures and lead the team. At the same time, as part of our educational focus, I will promote cooperation with scientific and educational institutes and thus further develop the joint project of oeoo and Holcim.


Gesa von Pappritz


Teacher, 57, volunteer member and fundraising expert

Why do I work for oeoo?

My first encounter with oeoo was while looking for ways to do something against plastic waste on beaches and in the ocean. In order to counteract this global problem, it takes more than a vision, namely an energetic community in which everyone can participate according to their possibilities.

I am convinced of oeoo because solutions to the marine litter problem are really available here thanks to a high level of expertise and passion. In addition, the association is engaged in many activities in the field of education and research. In this way, a significant contribution can be made to cleaning up the world’s oceans and preserving our ecosystem.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

I contact foundations, companies and people in order to win them as financial supporters and/or new members. With this support, the elephant seal project should be able to be implemented as quickly as possible.


Frank Brodmerkel


communication expert from Munich, working for oeoo since 2012.

Why join oeoo?

When I read about oeoo 10 years ago in the daily newspaper, I spontaneously offered Günther the support of my PR agency. Plastic waste has received great attention as one of the most pressing civilization problems in recent years. But it does not help the environment to talk about it. We must act at last!

Area of responsibility at oeoo

At oeoo, I support the association’s concerns through press and public relations, including a regular newsletter for members and interested parties. I ‘m also responsible for the oeoo web presence. It is intended to further increase the awareness of the association and to help to win new members.

Justine Kaczenski


From Hamburg, singer and social media manager

Why join oeoo?

Every day my work in the marketing industry cofronts me with mass consumption – and the effects are devastating! Where to put the garbage? Not in front of my front door … wrong! Everywhere lies plastic garbage and plastic bags lying everywhere on the beach. Our oceans are the purest dump! Together with oeoo I want to tackle this problem and raise awareness for marine waste and consumer behaviour!

Field of activity at oeoo?

In a digital world that is becoming more and more complex, I support oeoo in the content creation of social media channels. My tasks range from strategy development, editorial work to community management and influencer relations – almost everything that has to do with emojis at oeoo ?

Birgit Westermayr


Member of the first hour at oeoo.

Why join oeoo?

Because plastic has lost nothing in the environment. Clean water, clean food and a functioning oxygen production are of central importance for all of us.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

I support the association and above all Günther Bonin with the administration, bookkeeping and member support.

Erich Groever


61, graduated engineer (TU) food and environmental technology, owner of an engineering office for waste and environment, has been active since 2013 for oeoo.

Why join oeoo?

In 2013 I had first contact with Günther in the tests of the first SeeHamster. His enthusiasm immediately struck me, his vision of clean seas is convincing. The global pollution of the oceans is a basic cause, we can not even overlook the consequences. Therefore my cooperation, in order to actively counteract and find a solution.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

Environmentally sound waste management is my profession and my vocation. I add to Günther’s idea of collecting plastic waste from the sea my professional background and the aspect of further processing. My task at oeoo is to develop the most ecological, economical and economical solution for utilizing the waste of plastic material.

Thaiane Maciel


Environmental Engineer and Head of oeoo Rio

Why join oeoo?

One Earth One Ocean is a global NGO that works hard to combat plastic pollution in the oceans and promote environmental awareness in different countries. It is very special to be part of a team of professionals who are very technically prepared and who work together to find solutions to change this situation. As an environmental engineer, I feel professionally fortunate to be involved.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

I am the director of One Earth One Ocean in Rio, coordinating collection activities and collaborations with fishermen as well as environmental education and awareness projects.

Caroline Verna


Caroline, 37, French, lives in Rio since 2014 and is exploring the Guanabara Bay.

Why join oeoo?

I decided to join oeoo as scientific director because I fell in love with the city of Rio and its region. When I see Guanabara Bay in the city area, I see an amazing ecosystem, beautiful beaches, and it would be great if it were restored. In the northern zone, children still swim in it, although it is heavily polluted by sewage, garbage, gasoline and plastic waste (mostly household garbage). The local fishermen sometimes fish more plastic than fish. The mangrove forest, which used to cover most of the coastline, has been reduced. I believe that fish, dolphins and whales would return to a clean bay, of which there are now only isolated specimens. The health of children and their families in the North Zone could be improved, and economic and tourist opportunities in the region (fishing, beach activities, diving, sailing …) could be created. The bay is still alive and I hope that one day my children will be able to swim in it again safely.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

Since we have relaunched oeoo in Rio, I am currently a bit of a girl for everything, although I am concentrating on the exploration of Guanabara Bay, mainly researching the types, amount and sources of plastic pollution, and building a network of contacts with universities and other NGOs active in Rio.

Shawn Maholick


IT(SM)-Administrator und aus München, Mitglied seit 2017, Angestellter bei oeoo

Why member?

During my travels, I was repeatedly confronted with littered rivers and beaches that urgently needed to be addressed. In 2016, I also spent some time volunteering in Cambodia and witnessed the increasing problems and challenges caused by the ongoing littering. When I met Günther and oeoo shortly after, I was inspired by the idea and the concept and joined oeoo as an active member in 2017.

Area of responsibility at oeoo

As an employee of oeoo, I am responsible for our global IT infrastructure, take care of our employees and projects in all technical matters and focus on “Green IT” and sustainability.

Press Review

Read the latest media report about One Earth – One Ocean:

Portrait of our new head of oeoo Rio in the online magazine 2050

  The new German online magazine “2050 – for a better future” has not only… Read more »

oeoo in Asia Times Pulse

On 3 April 2022 Asia Times Pulse posted an article about the beach cleanup of… Read more »

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