2018
Reducing Plastic in Oceans

R.E. Mountain Sustainability Corps

R E Mountain Secondary
  • Mixed Secondary School Grades
Video Project (1 video)

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Wildlife protection, technological development and humanitarian action are current global themes that have been prominent in the last few decades. But what if we tried uniting the three towards a final objective? Such is the motivation of the R.E. Mountain Sustainability Corps’s Reducing Plastic in Oceans Campaign.

As a cause of death for over 1 million marine animals each year, plastic in oceans has contributed to not only the ever-increasing level of pollution in the environment, but also to the direct detriment of marine ecosystems, which continues to degrade the cleanliness and health of our oceans. However, our Sustainability Corps has noticed a lack of attention in the community directed towards this issue. Because we cannot directly see the effects of our actions on marine ecosystems, it is difficult to raise awareness and create change. However, this is exactly what we have begun to do.

Furthermore, poverty has been a persistently growing issue, especially with the income disparity widening between more and less economically developed countries. This year, our corps made it a wish to be able to further impact the lives of those in poverty while alleviating our footprint on the environment.

Thus, the R.E. Mountain Sustainability Corps has decided to integrate both breaking the poverty cycle and reducing the flow of plastic to oceans in two ways. First, we have propagated the #stopsucking campaign throughout the school. As the hashtag alludes, it is a movement to eliminate the use of disposable plastic straws. With over 500 000 plastic straws used in the North America per day alone, many end up in oceans where they both pollute the oceans and restrict airways of marine animals, ultimately leading to their deaths. In transitioning from plastic to biodegradable paper, metal or otherwise-made eco-friendly or reusable straws,  we are encouraging the reduction of both the production of plastic straws and their impact in the environment.

Next, to expand the reach of our humanitarianism, we have teamed up with The Plastic Bank in hopes to alleviate the effects of poverty worldwide. In realizing the advantages of the Return-It program, the Plastic Bank converts plastic and recyclable waste into a currency that is thus able to draw plastic out of the oceans and allow it to be used as valuable material. To encourage fellow students to participate in small actions making a change, we have set out collection bins throughout the school. Furthermore, we will be collaborating with our school’s Summit Program for special needs students in the recyclable material collection process in order to unite even more of the student body towards a common goal.

The R.E. Mountain Sustainability Corps Reducing Plastic in Oceans campaign is a collection of small actions with large impacts. Not only as a team, but as a school, as a community, and as a world: such small changes can lead to synergistic efforts towards a global goal.

 

Video Music: Light Years, stock from Wondershare Filmora

Sustainability Corps Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thesustainabilitycorps/

The Plastic Bank: https://www.plasticbank.org/