It's no secret that our oceans are suffocating due to the overwhelming amount of plastic pollution. It's time to contribute to positive change.
Over 12 million tonnes of plastic enters our oceans every year, harming marine animals and their habitats. Nearly 700 species, including endangered ones, are known to have been affected by plastic pollution and it's time for us all to contribute to positive change. The BBC Earth Digital Team are taking on the challenge of ditching single use plastic throughout July.
Meet the Team
Hey, I’m Elie, a Content Producer for BBC Earth! I’ve always been super passionate about nature, wildlife and the environment, leading me to do a Masters in ecology. We took a field trip to Borneo, where I saw first-hand the effects of plastic on our oceans and wildlife in even the remotest parts of the world.
Though conscious of the issue, it’s incredibly difficult to avoid plastics, particularly single-use, in the society we live in. The convenience factor will be the biggest challenge as it’ll mean more pre-planning and saying no to being lazy! I’m really looking forward to finding out how much I rely on plastic, discovering the reasons why it’s so tough to give it up and sharing such an important message.
I’m Luke, I run YouTube channels for BBC Studios, I’m an improviser in The RH Experience and when I’m not doing either of those things I’m usually watching or talking about Doctor Who. Between all that, I try to do my bit for the planet; I’ve got my reusable and I recycle, but admittedly I don’t do enough, which is why I’m taking part.
I’m really excited (and also terrified!) to find out how much I rely on plastic on a daily basis, I’m looking forward to finding alternatives for some of the every-day uses. I think this is going to be a big shift for me so I’m keen to document this challenge as much as possible and hope to have made some real changes by the end of the month!
Hi, I’m Amy! I lived in Bali for a few years and what was disappointing to see in paradise was the amount of plastic that accumulated on the beaches. I was part of a beach clean-up group, but the endless amount of straws and plastic bags that littered the beaches and rivers was hard to keep on top of. Living in Bali definitely brought to my attention the problem our overindulgence of plastic is having on our oceans and all that inhabit it. I want to bring awareness (to myself and others) to the overindulgence of plastic use that we have today, and perhaps the small changes we can make in our daily lives that will truly make a difference. I even struggle to remember my tote bag when I go to the supermarket so this is going to be a huge challenge, but I’m excited to hopefully change the way I think about my plastic use by the end of the month.
I’m Chris, senior digital producer at BBC Studios – much more used to dealing with Daleks or Duggee than disposable plastics! I try to be a good person when it comes to the environment: I have a recycling bin. I try not to be wasteful with water or power. I try to walk as much as possible. That’ll get me into green heaven, right? Right!?!
So, I’d obviously like to be better at looking after the one planet we have (for now). The biggest challenge will be being more organised about food shopping to avoid buying a plastic bag of courgettes or a plastic net of onions at my local supermarket. I’m excited to see if I can manage to do it (I pretty sure I’m going to struggle).
Hi, I'm Jack, I've been lucky enough to film in some amazing locations with BBC Earth and having seen some of the damage that plastic pollution is having on the ocean and all the wildlife that live there, I wanted to learn what changes I can make to help protect these natural habitats.
I'm a sucker for convenience so am apprehensive to see just how reliant I am on plastics throughout my everyday life, but I'm also excited to see what are the small changes we can all make to cut out plastics from our lives, and also think what other steps need to be taken at a wider level to make it easier for all of us to avoid single use plastics.
Hello! I'm Rhyanna, Content Producer for BBC Earth. I was lucky enough to grow up by the coast and find myself bee-lining for the beach when I need to escape the hustle and bustle of London. Visits are becoming more and more bittersweet due to the overwhelming amount of plastic pollution in the ocean and on the beach. When I notice the main culprits - straws, coffee cups, plastic bags - in their masses it makes me realise how easy it should be for us to cut these out of our everyday life.
My main struggle will be purchasing fresh veggies that are not pre-packaged in plastic. I'm also going to a festival in July which will be extremely challenging due to strict rules around bottles and convenient street food packaging. Can't wait to see how we all get on!
Kia ora, I'm Kara, Digital Marketing Manager for BBC Earth. I was born and raised in New Zealand with breathtaking landscapes, bush and beach for my backyard and an awareness that we need to protect our natural environment and the animals that call it home.
As children were constantly taught to recycle, conserve water, pick up litter and be "a tidy kiwi", yet, like so many of us, while throwing out a coffee cup or putting a straw in my drink I didn't give much thought to my own plastic use and what happened to it once it was in the bin.
That was until working on the Blue Planet II digital campaign, when the size of the plastics problem came into focus and I really began to examine my own daily choices often made out of convenience or being on a budget.
I currently recycle as much as possible, carry a reusable coffee cup and water bottle, however I know there is much more that I could do. Luckily I live in an area that has several packaging free shops, but they are considerably more expensive than the local supermarket. My biggest worry is that this could be a very costly month!
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