To show the real effect of plastic pollution to islanders, and "...immerse them in the reality of our time," Plastic Free Jersey teamed up with Ocean Culture Life to create an art installation made out with a week's worth of recycled plastic bottles from St. Helier.
5,200 plastic bottles are recycled each week in St. Helier - but across the island only 6% are, meaning that in 2017 more than 32 million were thrown away instead.
In 2017, 103 tonnes of plastic bottles were sent to the incinerator, which represents over 6,200 times the number of bottles Plastic Free Jersey and Ocean Culture Life have used for their ocean-inspired art installation.
The aim of the experience is to connect people to their ‘blue mind’ - a concept first established by scientist & author, Wallace J Nichols. His work on the ‘blue mind’ includes the cognitive, emotional, psychological, social, physical, and spiritual benefits that derive from connection to healthy waters and oceans throughout our lives.
Pictured: 5,200 bottles were used to create the art installation.
Luke Hosty, Co-Founder of OCL said: “We believe powerful storytelling is essential to encourage support, recognition and ultimately action. We believe in celebrating our blue planet through helping individuals and organisations create their own path to sustainable living.
"Visual Art allows us to create interactive and sensory experiences to share insight and knowledge about our ocean and human behaviour. Each one of us has the ability to access our blue mind, we just have to unlock it."
The art installation was created with a team from Les Amis who cleaned the bottles before the PFJ and OCL teams started threading the 5,200 bottles with rope.
It was presented last week at the Radisson as Jersey received its Plastic Free Community accreditation from Hugo Tagholm, the CEO of Surfers Against Sewage. Mr Tagholm described Jersey as "a shining beacon" in the fight against plastic pollution. He added that Surfers Against Sewage owed all islanders a debt of gratitude for the efforts made by the community to reduce single-use plastics.
Pictured: Linzi Hawkin Jane Burns and Sheena Brockie with Jersey's 'Plastic Free Community' accreditation.
The States Assembly was also awarded the ‘Plastic-free Parliament’ status, after States members agreed to eliminate a range of single-use plastic items while on official duty.
In addition, the States Greffe has been liaising with local firms who provide sandwiches and refreshments for use in the States Building to ensure they do not provide single-use plastic items.
Jane Burns, Eco Active Programme Manager, said: “States members’ agreement to address their own use of single-use plastics as part of ‘Plastic-Free Parliament’ complements the wider Plastic-Free Jersey initiative.
"Globally, plastic pollution is a vast environmental problem. In 2016, world plastics production totaled around 335 million metric tons. Unless we take urgent action to change our behaviour it is estimated that this will double by 2034. Small changes will collectively make a big difference.”
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