The Geolana banner to clean the harbour. Maristanis achieves one of its projects in Marceddì

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Fabio and Davide unroll the woolen cloth on the dock, twenty meters white framed on a profile by a very thin blue tape. Here the workers of the Terralba municipality drill a hole with a screwdriver, at regular intervals of one and a half meters. A line segment is passed through the eyelets and then knotted. The size of the strap is calculated on the rising tide. Head by head the cloth is secured to the concrete structure of the dock, passed under the tires used as a fender, covering the rusty chains. Davide flattens himself on the wooden slats, Fabio works from the bow of an old boat. Until the long skirt hangs from the quay, which immersed for five centimeters in the water takes part in the small motion lifted by the breeze. Not far away, a spot of gasoline floats, iridescent. If not for the workers and some curious fishermen who approach the workers to ask about the novelty, Marceddì is immobile, a hallucination under the blue sky.

"In the water there are petrophagous bacteria that can break down the oil molecules, but they are scattered. The oil absorbers Geolana create a natural habitat that the bacteria colonize. Here, thanks to the ideal conditions of humidity and hydration, they can reproduce even for a year while breaking down the hydrocarbons. In the meantime, the material is consumed and the oil is biodegraded”, explains Leonardo Ruggeri, Geolanadistribution manager who came to oversee the last phaseof fixing, which began some months ago. The "banners" are just one of the products of the Geolana mare series produced by the avant-garde Sardinian company. The oil-absorbers of sheep's wool and vegetable fibers (the cork from Ottana favours flotation for heavier models) have been designed for the depollution of sea and lakes and the daily prevention of micro-spills in ports. A kilo of wool can neutralize up to 17 kilos of hydrocarbons. A revolutionary product for its perfect circularity: made in Sardinia with zero km industry (Edilana biotechnology) uses Sardinian wool underlayings, otherwise unusable and destined for disposal, deriving from the selection of the production of yarns, carpets and fabrics.

The oleo-absorbers banners have all the compulsory ministerial authorizations. Being Marceddì part of a protected area, the installation needed all the specific local authorizations (R.A.S Local institutions Department, R.A.S Agricultural Department, R.A.S Environment Evaluations, Porth Authorieties of Oristano and the permission from the local fishermen consortium), which have been obtain by the Terralba Municipality. The banners are one of the guiding projects carried out by the MEDSEA Foundation within the MARISTANIS project, and in particular of the 5.2 strategy, committed to identifying and combating the sources of pollution in the wetlands of Oristano.

"Hydrocarbons move at fast speed over water. The banners intervene not only on the hydrocarbons spilled by the recreational boats, and to a lesser extent by the fishingones, they also neutralize those coming from the open sea. “One liter of oil can stretch out to occupy a surface as wide as a football field”, explains on the quay Giorgio Massaro, an expert in environmental sciences at MEDSEA. "The film that hydrocarbons form on the surface of the water prevents gas exchange. It is not unusual to see a mullet rising to the surface and gasping, ‘sniffing’ as local fishermen say, to take oxygen. The ultimate danger is diffused death. But the poison is transmitted in the food chain, and by bioaccumulation the victims who ends up suffering the most are the human beings".