Prime Minister Erna Solberg at Bergen Cleanup hosted by Clean Shores

PRESS RELEASE

Bergen, 6th September 2020 – A clean-up campaign at Nordre Rotøyna is organised by Clean Shores together with organisations In The Same Boat Vestland (supported by Agenda Vestlandet Foundation, created by the Norwegian bank, Sparebanken Vest), Naturvernforbundet, Keep Norway Clean, Bergen Og Omland Friluftsråd, Redningsselskap and many more.  

The special occasion invited Prime Minister Erna Solberg and Ogoori, a Norwegian ocean impact company that supplies traceable ocean plastic, to the cove to cleanup and start a dialogue around the plastic objects found there, as well as on Norway’s recent poor performance on circularity rate at 2.4%, below the global average at 8.6%. The finding is found in the Circularity Report 2020 published by The Circularity Gap Reporting Initiative, an initiative of Circle Economy, an impact organisation dedicated to accelerating the transition to the circular economy.  

Ope is a cleantech furniture company, that focuses on building sustainable products and services at the intersection of work and private life. Ope, together with Vestre and environmental activist, Rune Gaasø, founded Ogoori in 2019 pursuing their goal of turning Ope’s business regenerative. Ope plans to incorporate this ocean plastic collected along the Norwegian coastline into their design products, whilst also pushing the industrial value chain for plastic to become more circular. 

Both In The Same Boat and Ogoori are supported by Agenda Vestlandet Foundation, where their purpose is to promote sustainable projects within two main pillars, «Sustainable sea» and «green conversion», that will contribute to the business development in western Norway. They also help to accelerate ocean plastic cleanups and build the Regenerative Circular Value Chain. Siren Sundland, Chairperson of Agenda Vestland has also joined the cleanup crew.

Cleanup action at Nordre Rotøyna when CEO Larissa Slottet, CEO of Ogoori hands over the jar to PM Erna Solberg. Photo: Ogoori.

Larissa Slottet, CEO of Ogoori joined in on the cleanup action and got to hand over a jar of plastic granulate to the Prime Minister Erna Solberg. The jar contains 0.17kg of 100% ownerless marine plastic granulate originated from the beaches of Lofoten, Finnmark and Helgeland, and picked up by In The Same Boat cleanup crew in 2019. The plastic granulate is produced at NOPREC and registered on Empower plastic blockchain system. Prime Minister Erna Solberg will hold onto the jar of granulate until Ogoori are ready to include it in design objects. 

Blockchain technology ensures that the origin of ocean plastic is traceable and transparent. Information of the materials is stored on the blockchain app all the way from the collection point via recycling, production and use phase, as well as through future use cycles of the ocean plastic products.

Norway has a long way to go to reach a circular society, but the event today demonstrates the power of collaboration between organisations and initiatives to bring about the Regenerative Circular Value Chain for the plastic industry in Norway. Ogoori and their partners are ready to create the new plastic circular economy that Norway desperately needs.  

About Ope 

Ope is a cleantech furniture company, that focuses on building sustainable products and services at the intersection of work and private life. Ope aims to recreate a system that harmonises the interaction between industrial activities and the natural ecosystem by providing sustainable products and services, designed for the circular economy. This will open an opportunity to change people’s habit of consumption and leading them to protect the environment. In 2019, Ope, together with Vestre and an environmental activist, Rune Gaasø, founded Ogoori, a Norwegian ocean impact company that supplies traceable ocean plastic. Ope plans to incorporate this ocean plastic collected along the Norwegian coastline into their design products, whilst also pushing the industrial value chain for plastic to become more circular.  

Contact details:

Lars Urheim, CEO and Co-Founder.
Email: lars@ope.as 

Ope Shares with Minister Insights on Best Circular Practices

Photo credit: Marius Vervik

In the early morning of Monday 15th June, co-founder of Ope, Lars Urheim and Iselin Nybø, the Norwegian Minister of Trade and Industry met to discuss circular economy and regenerative business development. The meeting was arranged by Norwegian Research Council, for the occasion on scenic Sola beach, to highlight the problem of plastic pollution.

Together with Norwegian Retailers’ Environment Fund, The Norwegian Research Council has co-funded Ope’s project to turn ownerless ocean plastic into furniture. The project is now turned into a full-fledged daughter company, called Ogoori, co-founded with furniture company, Vestre.

On the sunny beach, Urheim and his team have set up Ope’s reusable and multi-functional modular system that is made up of panels to adapt to a variety of configurations based on the layout and the changing needs of the users. Their circular design with this system can be turned into a mixture of shelves, seating units, and space dividers.

Photo: Marius Vervik

Urheim handed over a jar of plastic pellets to Nybø from their first production of Ogoori’s 100% ownerless marine plastic made by Noprec – Norwegian Plastic Recycling. Then they performed a “digital handshake” through an app using technology partner, Empower’s blockchain technology. Minister Nybø will hold onto the granulate until Ope are ready to include it in design objects for homes and offices.

Blockchain technology ensures that the origin of ocean plastic is traceable and transparent. Information of the materials is stored on the blockchain app all the way from the collection point via recycling, production and use phase, as well as through future use cycles of the ocean plastic products.

Photo: Marius Vervik

National broadcaster NRK was present at the meeting, where both Urheim and Nybø were interviewed. The minister calls for more businesses to “think innovatively” to tackle climate and environmental challenges. Ope was selected by Norwegian Research Council to showcase an innovative company that is working towards the circular economy.

“It is really worthwhile to use ocean plastic in the circular economy and make a new product out of it, so that the plastic can have a new life. This [Ope] is a great company that is thinking in new ways and is thinking about being climate- and environmentally friendly,” said Nybø.

Ope’s ambition is to set an example for progressive, responsible, and profitable business practice that aims to regenerate damaged nature and create a negative environmental footprint.​

Ope’s Circular Design for SHE Conference

Ope was asked by SHE Conference to furnish the stage using our sustainable and reusable modular system. The system allows for a great variety of options, as it is designed for redesign and adaptability.

The theme that was chosen for the SHE Conference is called “Transformation”. Ope framed the sofa so that speakers like Gro Harlem Brundtland, Kristin Skogen Lund and Berit Svendsen could have a more intimate chat, and to reflect the theme. On-site adaptations to match the conference needs was an easy fix as the system allows for last-minute creative fancies and design modifications.

Ope continuously pushes the boundaries of circular economy, and now offers a furniture system exclusively on a “Furniture as a Service” model for the B2B market. But that is just the beginning. Ope has joined forces with their partner, Vestre to launch Ogoori, a company that offers plastics that is 100% ownerless marine waste on a ‘Material as a Service’ model.

Our goal is not just closing the loop, but to clean the planet, and store all the lost plastics in human objects forever.

Why was Ope at SHE Conference? Ope has always focused on circular design, and leverage diversity and female leadership within our field.

Could you think of using our circular designs for your home, office space or anywhere? Simply hit us an email at eirik@opework.com.

Photos below show how the Ope modules are showcased at the SHE Conference’s main stage and exhibits.