Floating down the Mississippi on a boat made of recycled materials

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ALTON, IL (KTVI) – It’s the mighty Mississippi River and his friends in France that are on the mind of Gary Bencheghib. The Frenchman is sailing down the river from St. Paul, Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico on a boat made of trash.

“So this is 90 percent recycled boat made out of 797 plastic bottles,” said Bencheghib, Recycled Mississippi Project. “So we’re literally floating on trash.”

Built in New York and tested on the Hudson River, this international crew is bringing light to the environment. But the terrorism in Nice, France is on everyone’s minds as they make their way down the Mississippi River.

“It’s completely tragic to hear what happened in France on Bastille Day,” Bencheghib said. “You know everyone was celebrating with their family. It was horrific to not be back home, experiencing it from here. I’m just completely moved by it.”

The group will go all the way to the Gulf of Mexico in their recycled boat.

“Some friends and I in New Zealand have been building kayaks made of plastic bottles and bamboo and going down rivers and coastline and this team came together and said we want to tackle one of the biggest most iconic rivers in the world,” said Dan Cullum, Recycled Mississippi Project.

The international super friends will continue cleaning up the waterways as they continue their journey.