If you have been watching the wonderful Blue Planet then you may well share in the shock and frustration of millions of viewers, at the damage plastic pollution is causing to our oceans. In response we have put together a list of actions you can take, that will have a positive impact on the issue of plastic pollution in our oceans and rivers. Not only will your actions help protect the oceans from further pollution, but you may also find a surprising benefit to your personal health and well-being, but more on that later….
Fight back against plastic pollution
- Join the Marine Conservation Society
Discover the extraordinary marine world around the British Isles and find out more about how you can help protect this precious environment. In response to the impact of the Blue Planet, the Marine Conservation Society is now offering one year of free membership to the first 5,000 new members, using the promo code of BLUEPLANET. This offer is valid until 30/11/17.
Regular membership costs £3.50 a month. Visit the Marine Conservation Society
- Get involved in Ocean Conservation via the Blue Planet
Find out about #2MinuteBeachClean’s, The Great Nurdle Hunt, or how to track Microbeads using the app Beat the Bead. The Blue Planet site also advises on becoming a citizen scientist with advice on how to report sightings of seabirds, seagrass and sharks. Visit the Blue Planet website
- Sign a petition
Yes, sometimes there a quite a few doing the rounds, however, that does not mean they are not worth the short time it takes to sign one. Here are two that we think reflect the ocean pollution question quite well
Bring back bottle deposits to stop plastic pollution in our oceans – we use an incredible 38.5 million plastic bottles a day, only half of which is recycled. Add your name the to the 38 Degrees petition that has almost reached 300,000. Alternatively, you could consider the Surfers Against Sewage petition with almost as many signatures.
Ban Balloon and sky lantern releases – these products may look nice but we now know they often end up causing slow and painful deaths to wildlife. Signatures are just over 40,000, help this petition reach 100,000.
- Do Some Lobbying
Studies estimate that 600 billion bottles will be produced globally this year – and Coca-Cola alone is responsible for one-sixth of all plastic drinks bottles sold across the world. In the UK, 16 million plastic bottles will be dumped into our environment every day. So, why not give their CEO a nudge and demand urgent action – Email Coca-Cola’s CEO.
Why Coca-Cola? The thinking is, that if enough of us target the single biggest polluter and get a positive reaction, the rest will follow. This is a major campaign for Greenpeace which you can read about here.
Alternatively, you could lobby your MP. The is Government has just announced it is considering a tax on takeaway boxes and other plastics. Why not lobby your MP to ensure this happens. If you don’t know their email address you can find it here.
- Support charities dedicated to ending ocean pollution
Every donation makes a difference. Here are a couple of organisations who we think deserve support.
Greenpeace – The Greenpeace campaign takes time to explain just how so much plastic ends up in the ocean and offers you the opportunity to donate to this high profile campaign
Plastic Pollution Coalition – this is the mother of all environmental campaigns. The sheer number of charities and organisations behind this group demonstrates the urgency of the plastic pollution problem. You can take the 4R’s pledge and donate.
- Learn To Use less plastic
Changing established lifestyle habits can be heard, but don’t worry, there is lots of advice out there, here are two examples from respected campaigners and bloggers
- Buy from a Zero Waste Shop
There are also a number of zero-waste shops opening up that across the country, offering customers healthy organic produce without creating packaging waste. To find out if one has appeared near you simply pop ‘zero waste’ and your location into your search engine of choice. The nearest option to the Naturesave option is Devon’s first zero-waste shop, Earth. Food. Love Read more here
- Place your insurance with Naturesave
Take out personal, travel or small renewable energy insurance with us and we will donate 10% of the annual premium to our charity, The Naturesave Trust. To date over £600,000 has been raised for environmental conservation projects across the UK. Whilst we cover a broad range of environmental activities we have supported a number of organisations involved with protecting marine and aquatic life. Recent examples include: –
The CRRU is a small charity based in northeast Scotland dedicated to the welfare, conservation and protection of whales, dolphins and porpoises through scientific investigation, environmental education, and the provision of a 24-hour veterinary service for sick, injured and stranded individuals. The Naturesave Trust helped fund ongoing life-saving rescue and conservation work, allowing the CRRU charity to increase its capacity for further training opportunities, public awareness raising and ongoing educational outreach work.
The Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust was able to undertake a restoration project in partnership with the Naturesave Trust at their reserves in the spectacular Cotswold Water Park wildlife haven. The project aim was to enhance the biodiversity and public access and engagement features on our nature reserves at Whelford Pools SSSI and Roundhouse Lake SSSI.
- Apply for funding with the Naturesave Trust
The primary function of the Trust is to encourage the greater adoption of sustainable development. The Trust obtains 100% of its funding from the premiums generated by Naturesave Insurance. If you would like to apply for funding simply complete our online application form
Final Thought – Trying to save the world is actually good for you!
Taking positive action on climate and pollution issues will certainly make a difference to whatever cause you pick. However, that is not the only benefit. As highlighted in her wonderful book, The Happy Hero, Solitaire Townsend reveals the surprising evidence that ‘trying to make a difference can actually extend your life, improve your relationships and even help you recover from a cold… because, it turns out, saving the world is good for you.’