A Wave of Change for Single Use Plastic in North Wales
by Hannah Earp, School of Ocean Sciences, Bangor University
The Bangor University hub of Capturing our Coast, a national citizen science project funded by Heritage Lottery Fund, in collaboration with Keep Wales Tidy, organised a screening of the award winning adventure documentary, ‘A Plastic Ocean’. The event was a huge success with over 300 people from all generations turning out to increase their understanding of the plastic pollution problem.
An adventure across the world’s oceans
The screening was kick-started by a talk from local charity, Keep Wales Tidy, about campaigns aiming to combat plastic pollution in Wales. The documentary then took the audience on adventures across the world’s oceans, illustrating the vast scale of the issue, the plight of remote islands being swamped by plastic debris, and the impact of plastics on human health. The documentary also highlighted positive steps being made to combat plastic pollution alongside small changes every person could make to reduce their plastic footprint.
Fun and games
Attendees at the event were also given the opportunity to take part in activities to increase their awareness of marine plastic pollution. These included estimating how long day-to-day items, such as water bottles and polystyrene, take to break down in the ocean as well as competing on The Sustainability Lab’s recycling game. Three other local organisations; Underwater Wales, The Snowdonia Society and the RSPB were on hand to share their experiences of local plastic pollution.
Wave of change
The evening’s message had a huge impact on the audience and inspired many to pledge to make changes to their daily plastic habits, recorded on the event’s “Wave of Change” wall. For example, one audience member pledged to “… buy fresh food not in plastic” and another to “… get a non-plastic toothbrush and cotton buds”. Furthermore, thirty people met up the next morning to collect 24 bags of litter from Dinas Dinlle beach.
Dr Siobhan Vye, Capturing our Coast North Wales Project Officer said:
The support and engagement we received for the documentary screening and beach clean was overwhelming and it really demonstrated the passion of people in North Wales to protect their marine environment.”
Contact Capturing our Coast North Wales