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October Newsletter 2016
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Is education the answer to plastic marine pollution?

Our leaders for tomorrow need to be well prepared to deal with the problems and issues of the future. Raising an environmentally literate generation of problem solvers who understand the connections between our lifestyles and our natural world will help ensure that our future decision makers are prepared for the challenges they are likely to face. Our oceans are the life sustaining force on our planet; from the air we breathe to climate regulation, food and medicine, there is much we depend on.
 
But it is not just children and young people that need to learn about the threats to our ocean. Everybody has a responsibility for caring for our ocean. We all need to understand how our choices with our food, water, housing, clothing, recreation and travel are impacting our future. By teaching the students and their teachers to care about, value and understand our oceans we can encourage these environmentally aware people to spread this message further into the wider community. By talking to their friends and family, to colleagues and acquaintances, by writing letters and using social media to discuss not only the problems but also the solutions and to lead by example with the lifestyle changes required to be good environmental stewards, change will happen.

Plastic Free Seas believes that education is absolutely the answer for this global issue of plastic marine pollution that is affecting our oceans and our lifestyles. Providing relevant, factual and interesting information is the key to enabling people to push for legislation changes, better product design, waste reduction, and cohesive waste management practices to be realised. Our goal is to design a comprehensive bilingual education program that can be used from kindergarten to university and within the community, inspiring and challenging people to do what they can to help solve this global problem.  

To support our work please join us at our 'Focus on Our Seas' Fundraising Evening.  
Plastic Free Seas in action:

To see all events for the summer click here

On land
From kindergarten to university, hundreds of students benefitted from talks, workshops, cleanup events and activities lead by the PFS team. What we learn on the beaches, we take in to schools as do the participants of the cleanups. Increasing the awareness of the problem on our beaches with first hand accounts is an effective way of enabling behavior change to reduce waste.
On the beach
October saw a number of typhoons affecting Hong Kong. One of the most noticeable after effects of these storms was the vast quantities of micro plastic pieces covering the beaches. From Lantau Island to Po Toi this insidious problem was widespread. Beach cleanups are largely ineffective at removing tiny pieces of plastic - the plastic must be prevented at source.
Out at sea
Various groups and individuals were all aboard the PFS Sea Classroom this month, with Girl Scouts, Home Schoolers, Primary and Secondary students, companies, and families on an AFCD community trip all taking part in sea surface trawls and other activities. The microscopic discoveries made in some of the trawls were fantastic to see.
Back to School!
Would you like Plastic Free Seas to come in to your school for a talk? If you are a parent and would like to introduce PFS to your child's school or teacher we would be grateful for the introduction. Please get in touch with Dana to discuss.  The PFS Sea Classroom program is also open for new bookings and Julia will be very happy to answer your questions.
Plastic cups be gone!
Plastic cups are used prolifically in our daily lives. Not only by the thousands at sporting and music events with beer and soft drinks, but also as packaging for smoothies, juices and even cut fruit and muesli mixes. There is an alternative to single use disposable plastic and we are very excited to stock a limited number of 20oz stainless pint cups by Klean Kanteen. Each cup also has a silicone ring and stainless steel carabiner for attaching to pocket loops or bags! All proceeds from the sale support the PFS education programs. Get yours before they run out!
Buy
Little Wins Campaign:
What can one person do to make a difference? Our response is always - a lot! Here is one reader's little win:

A group of DBIS parents set up a reusable plates and cutlery washing station at an event at our children's school this year.  It triggered a lot of enthusiasm and interest with like-minded parents, school and cafeteria staff, and it started a conversation on how we could reduce plastic waste. Since then many actions... Read more

October Eco-tip:
In just a few short days, Discovery Bay (Lantau Island) will be hosting it's much anticipated music festival - The Big Picnic. Previously it was held in a park but this year it is on the beach. As waste is a huge concern at any event, this year Plastic Free Seas is working with the organisers and food providers to reduce waste and recycle more. Here are a few tips to reduce your festival footprint (wherever that may be next):

  • PREPARE for the event with your own cutlery sets (and reusable straw), water bottle and reusable cups and plates. Click here for the PFS range!  
  • REDUCE your food packaging before you get to the event with reusable containers.
  • REFRAIN from purchasing glow sticks or accepting free balloons or other promotional gifts. Choose quality event souvenirs.
  • AVOID these products that CANNOT be recycled - Tetrapak boxes, foiled lined plastic packets, food contaminated packaging, pizza boxes, plastic straws, plastic lined coffee cups, paper, styrofoam or plastic plates. 
  • USE the recycling bins and avoid placing rubbish in an already overflowing bin.

Support:
Pledge to Knock Plastic Out Of The Ocean 
Sign the petition to Implement Laws on Refundable Plastic Drink Containers
Sign the petition to Ban Plastic Microbeads in Personal Care Products in Hong Kong


Competitions:  
2017 Ocean Awareness Student Contest - Ocean Pollution: Challenges & Solutions 

Upcoming Events:  

Community Beach Cleanup - November 6, Discovery Bay (Sam Pak Wan), 9am - 11am
'A Plastic Ocean' screening - November 12, Admiralty, 3:45pm - 5:40pm
'Focus on Our Seas' Fundraising Evening - November 18, 6:30pm - 9:30pm ticket flap.com/plasticfreeseas
Please join the Plastic Free Seas team for our inaugural fundraising evening to 'Focus on Our Seas'
The goal for this event is to raise a minimum HK$400,000 to enable us to create and deliver a comprehensive and exciting bi-lingual education program so that we can better reach students in local schools. The most important tool for solving the problem of plastic marine pollution is education - people need to know about the problem, and they need to know what they can do about it.  

The evening includes canapés, free flow wine and beer with an art sale and auction of award winning prints by international photographers as well as local original works of art and photographs. There will be a lucky draw and silent auction. 

In the News:

Plastic Free Seas is grateful for the generosity and support from individuals, companies, schools and foundations to fund our education programs.  If you want to contribute, your donation large or small will help continue to run the PFS land, beach and sea activities.
DONATE
Copyright © 2016 Plastic Free Seas, All rights reserved.

www.plasticfreeseas.org


 






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Plastic Free Seas · 21/f Chun Wo Commercial Centre · 23-29 Wing Wo St · Sheung Wan · Hong Kong

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