ExplorersBio

David de Rothschild

Environmental Storyteller

Emerging Explorer

Photo: Plastiki sailboat floating on the ocean

Photograph by The Plastiki Team

Photo: David de Rothschild

Photograph courtesy Broomberg & Chanarin

David de Rothschild is an adventurer, environmentalist, and the founder of MYOO. It is MYOO's goal to inspire dreams, fuel conversation, share innovations, and activate change in order to give nature a voice.

His adventurous spirit, passion, and commitment to action have sent him to some of the world's most remote and fragile regions in order to bring widespread media attention and, moreover, solutions to urgent global environmental issues. He has a unique ability to take his no-nonsense call to action across all demographics, be it from children to world leaders, NGOs to NASA, industries to nonprofits.

In the summer of 2010, de Rothschild embarked on his most challenging and high-profile adventure yet, the Plastiki. The Plastiki set sail on an ocean adventure over 8,000 nautical miles across the Pacific Ocean from San Francisco to Sydney.

The Plastiki was no ordinary vessel. The 60-foot catamaran was built from approximately 12,500 reclaimed plastic bottles and a unique recyclable technology called Seretex. Seretex, innovated and engineered by the MYOO team, takes PET beyond clothing, drink bottles, and blister packs and uses it in a much smarter way. The idea is to avoid adding more plastic into the environment and instead harness a wasted resource and find smarter uses for it. This distinctive, one-of-a-kind construction demonstrated that the list of solutions available is far greater than the list of problems. The Plastiki created a platform to fuel conversation and shift public thinking and perception from plastic as the enemy to plastic becoming part of the solution. The mission: to beat waste. The adventure set the stage for a historic expedition and delivered a spectacular global "message in a bottle."

In November 2011 de Rothschild and a core crew traveled into the heart of Brazil's Amazon rain forest to discover the effects of the controversial Belo Monte dam project as part of MYOO's ARTiculate series.

The bigger the challenges, the more de Rothschild rises to face them, and it is this inspirational manner that's driven UNEP, Clean Up the World, and The World Economic Forum to recognize de Rothschild as a Climate Hero, Global Clean Up Ambassador, and a Young Global Leader, respectively. With numerous adventures, three books, a hit television series, and most recently a National Geographic documentary under his belt, de Rothschild isn't slowing down. He keeps dreaming bigger and pushing harder, and until real action and solutions are applied to the problems, he won't be content.

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Kids

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    Nat Geo E-Team

    What are David de Rothschild and the rest of the National Geographic Explorers up to? Meet the E-Team and learn about their projects in this interactive mural.

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    Interview With David de Rothschild

    Read an interview with David de Rothschild, NG Emerging Explorer and Adventurer.

In Their Words

People have a lot to learn about ecology—but first you have to get their attention.

—David de Rothschild

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