The International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) and marine conservation group Ghost Fishing Foundation have launched Good Net, a project recovering discarded fishing nets from oceans and recycling them into volleyball nets for local communities.
Good Net was launched on Copacabana Beach in Brazil, venue for the volleyball competition at the 2016 Olympic Games and home to a school that was renovated by the FIVB for the Games.
The launch event saw volleyball played with recycled fishing nets for the first time, with local people taught about the problem of ghost nets in the ocean.
"As volleyball players, nets are at the centre of our game and of our joy," Brazilian volleyball star Giba said at the launch.
"And we love the beach.
"So, for us, it was really hard to learn that, in the oceans, there are so many nets that are doing so much harm out of sight.
"With volleyball, we have the most watched sport at the Olympic Games.
"Who better to team up with groups like Ghost Fishing, so we can act as one to make Good Net?"
Each year, 640,000 tonnes of fishing gear are discarded in the ocean, trapping marine wildlife, it is claimed.
Good Net will aim to raise global awareness of this problem as well as contribute to the solution.
The project has also joined the United Nations Clean Seas campaign in the fight against marine plastic pollution.
Launched in February 2017, the Clean Seas campaign aims to increase global awareness of the issue of marine litter, as well as to implement measures that highlight and address the gaps in waste and recycling management.
"The key to advancing global sustainable development lies in collaboration," said Julie Duffus, sustainability manager at the International Olympic Committee.
""We are thrilled that the FIVB has joined the Clean Seas initiative.
"Together, we can use the power of sport to help tackle pollution and make an active contribution to society and the environment.
"Ghost nets are among the greatest threats to our ocean’s biodiversity, and as part of their Good Net project, FIVB are championing innovative solutions to tackle this global issue."