Reef Shopping: Opolis

by | Jun 27, 2024 | Conservation, Industry | 0 comments

Since the very beginning, Opolis knew it wanted to develop collections that would reflect its commitment to shifting the industry standard of optics manufacturing, AND their commitment to cleaning up the planet. To date, they have removed over 380,000 water bottles from the ocean!

Their StokedPlastic® collection is made of 100% recycled Polyethylene Terephthalate also known as rPET. Polyethyune Terapthalate is the main ingredient in plastic bottles. Opolis has teamed up with local rPET manufacturers based in Bali, Manila, and Nairobi to assist in the cleanup of their beaches, oceans and landfills. The rPET/upcycled materials are then shipped via climate-neutral shipping to our facilities in China, where Opolis eyewear is manufactured. They are ensuring that local businesses that are making a positive impact on their community and environment are being recognized and rewarded.

The story of Opolis:

James Merrill’s decade of experience as an USAID contractor led him to developing Opolis – a truly sustainable line of sunglasses. James first saw how single-use plastic led to degradation of natural resources, and impacted low-income communities. Through technological innovation, Opolis uses plant based and rPET plastic that is, or would end up in, the ocean as upcycled material for durable goods like sunglasses.

Opolis is intentional about the sourcing of the plastic to be reused through creating jobs in Kenya, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Eventually, the rPET will be able to be used in other durable goods to put plastic to use instead of the garbage. As consumers, James and Opolis wants to empower consumers to take accountability into their hands by researching products’ supply chains to determine if it aligns with their own definition of sustainability.

It starts with shades. Yes. Opolis is making sunglasses out of plant based and recycled plastics. But that’s just the beginning. That’s just to get people’s attention. It’s to help people to see the world through, not Opolis’ eyes, but hers – Earth.

  • xeniaforever

    As senior editor here at reefs, I get to work with scientists from all over the world, and have made some wonderful friends in the industry! I also write for the site, and am the office manager at FRESH New London and the mother of two brilliant, talented young women.

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