A Small Hard Working Group
Plastic is everywhere. It is in the air we breath and the water we drink. It is is the seas, oceans and rivers. It litters beaches, streets and river banks the world over. It is a big problem. This is the reason we set up this Plastic Pollution Charity.
In 2021 a group of concerned individuals travelled to the West Coast of Scotland with a view to making a small difference. We spent 5 days picking up plastic from beaches.
Do we like tidy beaches? Yes we do. But more importantly we understand the urgency of removing plastic from beaches before it breaks down in to billions of micro and nano plastic particles, which will be impossible to remove.
The forming of this charity is a storey of annoyance, impactince, perseverance and lastly (of course) hope.
Will Thorpe (Thorpy) one of the six founding members of People Against Plastic Pollution, travelled to the Western Isles of Scotland with his young family in 2020, hoping to show them a beautiful unspoiled coastline. However, after walking for hours to reach the coast, it was found to be strewn with plastic of all shapes and sizes. This was rather upsetting.
For months Thorpy tried to raise funds, with a view to getting back up to the Western Isles and clean up the beaches. However, the fund raising did not go well.
In 2021 Thorpy’s company (Southwest Environmental) , gave a talk to University of Bristol Students (organised by Six Degrees). One of the students present Cairo, contacted Southwest Environmental with details of a funded internship, which was a welcome offer. Thorpy suggested that Cairo organise a beach cleaning trip, and as early fund raising attempts had failed, and being impatient, decided to meet costs privately for the trip.
Towards the end of July 2021, Cairo had organised the trip. And we set off in two cars full of camping equipment, bodies and baked beans. We took a day to travel from Bristol to Dumfries and Galloway.
The trip resulted us in removing around 16 cubic meters (about a bus full) of plastic from remote Scottish Beaches. But the trip was far from easy. We all expected the trip to be hard physically, but on the whole we were not met with universal support. In many instances we met with dismissal, distrust and anger.
But the six people who went on the trip, are Environmentalists, and in most cases Environmental Scientists, and we resolved to push back against this adversity, set up this charity, which with or without the original trustees will continue to do good work long in to the future.
If you would like to read more about the Scotland 2021 Trip please read Thorpy’s Project Journal.
Scotland 2022 saw us build on the successes of 2021, whilst avoiding some of the pitfalls. The result was very good and we managed to remove 48m3 of plastic pollution from 2 beaches over 1 week.
Land owners were also a lot more helpful this year. And the use of a feed trailer supplied by “Pod” likely resulted in us doubling our plastic pollution removal efficiency.
Our fuel costs this year were very high, likely exceeding £900. These costs were met privately by trustees.
Plastic Pollution Charity Status
As of February 2022, People Against Plastic Pollution is a Registered Charity Number: 1197869. The Charity is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation Registered with the Charity Commision for England and Wales.