Created by Lenka Petráková, the design collects ocean debris and then breaks it down to be recycled. It won the Jacques Rougerie foundation’s 2020 Grand Prix Award for Architecture and Innovation.

The structure’s design and concept

Created to float on the Pacific Ocean, the 8th Continent is made up of five main parts:

  1. The Barrier collects waste and harvests tidal energy
  2. The Collector sorts, biodegrades, and stores waste
  3. The Research and Education Centre is where inhabitants can study, and showcase the effects on our oceans
  4. The Greenhouses is where plants are grown, and water is desalinated
  5. The Living Quarters where people live
Self-Sustainable Floating 'Continent' Cleans Ocean Waste

The “continent” shifts according to its position, its inside environment, and the ocean’s movements. The entire platform is self-sufficient, using energy from the waves as well as the sun from solar panels above the greenhouses. 

Petráková explained that she drew inspiration for her project from marine life — just like self-sustainable living aquatic organisms, the 8th Continent is fully self-sustainable, too.

As Petráková said to Euronews, “I realized how destroyed the oceans are and how many species are extinct, how much pollution is there, and that the parts that may have never seen a human being, feel the effects of our activities.”