Brits throng to clean up plastic waste

Brits throng to clean up plastic waste

More than 20,000 of us joined beach and river clean ups over the autumn, the largest number ever says organiser Surfers Against Sewage

Twenty-one thousand volunteers cleared 36 tonnes of plastic pollution from beaches and rivers in UK’s biggest ever Autumn Plastic Clean-Up. Pictured above: plastic picking people below the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol
 
Beach and River Clean organiser Surfers Against Sewage says increased public awareness of plastic pollution led to 100 more cleans than took place a year ago, an increase of 26 per cent.  
 
More than 27,600 single-use drinks containers were picked up for recycling during the plastic clear-ups, which Surfers Against Sewage says spur the Government to action in setting up a Deposit Return Scheme for all plastic drinks bottles.
 
More than 21,200 volunteers of all ages gave 73,454 hours of their time to join cleans at nearly 500 beaches, river banks and lakes across the UK to remove a staggering 35.9 tonnes of marine plastic pollution, the equivalent of 8,991 full bin bags.
 
The cleans occurred just after Storm Callum battered the UK leaving our coastline covered in plastic waste.
 
Ben Hewitt, Surfers Against Sewage’s Director of Campaigns and Projects, says it's fantastic so many Brits want to tackle plastic waste : 'We can make sure we don’t choke our streets, parks and playgrounds with plastic pollution. Because if it’s on our street today, then it’s in our rivers tomorrow, and our beaches and oceans forever. We can make sure each of us understands that we can change this, whoever we are and wherever we live. But we must work together.
 
'We’re part of a community network across the UK that’s tackling single-use plastic from the beach, all the way back to the brands and businesses who create it.'
 
Clean up locations
 
Furthest North – Balnakiel, Durness
Furthest South – L’etacq, Jersey
Furthest East – Great Yarmouth
Furthest West –Portrush, Northern Ireland
Most Remote – Nort Uist, Outer Hebrides
33 - Urban Cleans
International Cleans – Morocco and Portugal
 
The beach clean series was organised by Surfers against Sewage and supported by partners Greggs, The Environment Agency, British Canoeing, Ecover, Parley For The Oceans, REN Skincare, Surfing England and WSL Pure.
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