Stopover in Senegal 🇸🇳

  • Stopover 5
  • Port of Dakar
  • From February 14 to March 14, 2023

Stopover 5

Dakar, fifth stopover of Plastic Odyssey

It is a symbolic stopover for the Plastic Odyssey expedition! Indeed, it is here in Dakar that the idea of Plastic Odyssey was born seven years ago. Simon, co-founder of the project, imagined the first outlines on Hann Beach. Today, it is an entire team that has tackled, alongside Senegalese people, the major problem of plastic pollution in the territory, supported by valuable local actors such as the French Embassy and the French Institute.

In the streets of Dakar, multiple transparent water sachets litter the ground. One corner torn off, five sips taken, and the sachet discarded. These emblematic waste products reflect the country’s problem and its difficulties in dealing with the numerous plastic wastes.

Environmental soldiers, street collectors, entrepreneurs, and activists are fighting for effective collection solutions to be put in place and for the waste industry to be structured for the plastic to be valued for its environmental and social benefits.

Today, these motivated actors with a growing impact are still at the foot of the mountain. This mountain is the Mbeubeuss landfill with its 150 hectares of surface area, 20 meters in height, and over 3,000 tons of waste (all mixed together) that still arrive every day to complete 50 years of garbage collection.

Garbage [“Ordures” in french]? No, “pure gold” [“Or dur”in french] as Modou Fall, an entrepreneur participating in the OnBoard Laboratory, calls it. Although these numbers are disproportionately large, these are equally inspiring initiatives, full of hope, and dynamic actors that we met in Senegal. Looking back on a one-month stopover…

Key figures


new entrepreneurs

A community of motivated entrepreneurs, ready to start or develop their activity to value plastic waste.


awareness and education

In Dakar, 700 students visited the ship and more than 1000 French schoolchildren followed the live broadcast.


new machines

With the help of local partners, two low-tech recycling machines were built on-site and joined the onboard recycling workshop.

What should we remember from this stopover?

A constellation of projects was deployed during this month-long stopover. 700 Dakar schoolchildren from Aimé Césaire, Dial Diop, Jean Mermoz High School and many others discovered the profession of explorer aboard the ship and the solutions to fight plastic pollution on their scale.

26 of their older peers, recycling entrepreneurs, were welcomed on board to find keys to grow their business. In this country where everyone wants to be a change agent, dynamism and collaboration were at the rendezvous.

In parallel, the on-board recycling workshop on which researchers and entrepreneurs worked expanded. Two machines were built to develop new solutions for transforming waste into objects: a densifier to transform bags into pellets ready to be transformed, a plastic-sand extruder and molds for prototyping construction materials such as paving stones or tiles.

Other solution carriers have opened their arms to us, and beautiful projects are taking shape on the Senegalese territory for the months and years to come.

Web serie – Episode 1

Discover the first episode of the web series produced in partnership with Les Éclaireurs.


The Plastic Odyssey vessel makes a stopover in Dakar

About the Expedition

The Plastic Odyssey team navigates around the world to discover, reference, and share concrete solutions to fight against plastic pollution. A three-year expedition across three continents in countries most affected by plastic pollution.

Carte de l'expédition de Plastic Odyssey

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