Lonely Whale Foundation

Bringing courageous ideas to life to save our ocean from plastic pollution.

The Problem

Some 500 million plastic straws are used in the United States every day. Many end up in the ocean, polluting water and killing sea life. An estimated 71 percent of seabirds and 30 percent of turtles have traces of plastics in their stomachs; and when plastic breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces known as “microplastics,” small enough for fish to ingest, toxins enter the food chain, threatening human health, too. At the present rate, by 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish.

The Solution

Actor and activist Adrian Grenier founded the Lonely Whale Foundation to create empathy for the fate of the ocean by relating it to the everyday reality of ordinary people. The foundation aims to be an incubator for ideas that drive impactful market-based change on behalf of our ocean. Among its campaigns have been: Strawless in Seattle, which led to pledges by Seattle businesses to incorporate marine degradable alternatives to single-use plastic straws and to the city committing to ban single use plastic straw; and #StopSucking, a social media challenge that asks individuals, organizations, and brands to pledge to stop using straws. The foundation’s work is founded on the principle of “radical collaboration,” meaning that every campaign and initiative it supports must have at least one partner — because “We are more effective working together than if we choose to act alone.”

Stage of Development

  • Early Stage
  • Established Prototype
  • Scaling
  • Other

Organization to Receive Funds

Lonely Whale Foundation

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