In Focus: Tim Silverwood

Posted on May 02 2016

In Focus: Tim Silverwood

Tim Silverwood is an ordinary guy who has found himself at the forefront of a global movement. His personal decision to start cleaning rubbish from his local surf breaks has led him down an extraordinary path of scientific research, activism, charity development and entrepreneurial success.

Tim is co-founder of the not-for-profit organisation Take 3 that asks everyone to simply take 3 pieces of rubbish with them when they leave the beach, waterway or…anywhere. What began as a grass-roots project to clean local beaches has developed into a global movement to ‘change the face of trash’.

Tim Silverwood

In 2011, Tim sailed 5000km across the North Pacific Ocean to study and document the infamous Great Pacific Garbage Patch, an accumulation zone containing vast quantities of plastic debris. Tim became a messenger for the oceans, delivering a powerful TEDx talk at Newcastle in 2011 and over 150 presentations and workshops since.

Tim’s story is entertaining and inspiring, reminding us that anyone and everyone can be a change-maker. A specialist in waste and its impact on the natural environment, Tim has built a successful career in addressing the urgent need to transform the way we make, dispose and think about ‘stuff’. 

Tim sees the challenges of sustainability through optimistic eyes. His convincing arguments and unbridled enthusiasm makes anyone believe change IS possible and that each of us can be part of the solution. His dedication culminated in him being awarded ‘Sustainability Champion’ at the NSW Government Green Globe Awards 2014.

In addition to building the Take 3 charity, Tim is using business to help solve complex environmental and social problems. Tim launched ReChusable (Re-choose-able) in 2012, a business that provides quality, sustainable alternatives to disposable plastic products. Tim is co-founder of Circular Economy Australia, a collective of innovators that aim to re-shape the way we think about our linear economy and champion new ways of sourcing, producing, transporting and re-processing goods.

Tim consults to government, industry, education sectors and community groups to development practical measures to reduce waste and prevent pollution. Tim is passionate about education and has pioneered techniques to stimulate and record complex behaviour change across many demographics. Tim is currently developing an innovative digital platform to transform the way we think about waste.

A passionate activist, Tim was a key figure in the successful campaign to introduce a 10 cent container deposit scheme in New South Wales and contributes to legislative reform projects targeting: plastic bags, packaging and micro-plastics.

Tim is a regular guest on various media channels to discuss waste, pollution and ocean conservation issues. Tim has featured in a number of international films and expresses his views and opinions for a variety of publications. Tim was awarded Sustainability Champion at the 2014 NSW Government Green Globe Awards, was a finalist in the 2013 Pride of Australia Awards, an Ambassador for Keep Australia Beautiful, an Australia Day Award winner and has received numerous other commendations. Tim lives with his partner in Bondi Beach, Australia. 

For more information visit or

Social media: @timsilverwood @take3cleanbeach

About the Author: Tim is co-founder of the not-for-profit organisation Take 3.

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