One of the tasks they regularly undertake is beach clean-ups.
Here YS is helped by their next-door-neighbour to gather some of the many plastic bottles and bags washed up or dumped on the beautiful south sea island shore. Horrified by the amount of plastic rubbish they see they've set up their own campaign, Say No to Plastic.
What a good idea, I thought. I can do that too and encourage others as well. Then I looked around my bathroom - where I was when I had this brilliant idea. At the shampoo, hair conditioner, shower gel and even soap in plastic bottles. Then I thought about the laundry room (that's a posh term for a shed). All my washing powder and fabric conditioner comes in plastic bottles as do most other things around the house. I'd never really thought about how much plastic we use every day.
How can I cut that down?!
I asked Younger Son who explained that he didn't mean every plastic container: that would be a ginormous if not impossible job. He meant plastic water bottles and plastic bags, the ones I put fruit in when I go to the supermarket for instance. 'Cut down on the ones you don't really need,' he said.
That's a bit more manageable. I could try and do that. I already re-use my plastic shopping carrier bags along with the non-plastic ones. (For some years we've been charged 5p a carrier bag in Wales. It took a while to remember to take bags with me but it's second nature now.) And I don't need to put my fruit and veg in bags - and I should stop buying them ready-bagged.
From the Blue Temple website:
Estimates suggest that each year between 500 billion and 1 trillion plastic bags are consumed, amounting to approximately one million plastic bags per minute. Further, on average, a person will use a plastic bag for only 12 minutes.
The damage that plastic does to the oceans and the life therein is widespread and long-lasting. It wouldn't take much effort on my part to do my little bit to help.
One other thing: YS explained that squirty soap contains micro-beads to help make it more lathery. Micro-beads are very bad for the oceans!* I've only recently swapped over to squirty soap instead of bars of soap so I'll have to revert. (Have you notice the sparsity of bars of soap in shops?)
And now for something that can be done with rubbish!
Could you Say No to Plastic?
* An aside: an article published last week in National Geographic says that the tiny metal particles in sun screen may harm marine creatures by damaging their defence mechanisms that protect their embryos. The micro metal particles are also used in toothpaste and cosmetics.