What an exciting and sunny day aboard! Today we were visited by Imogen from Plastic Free Bournemouth who came along with a film crew to find out what we are doing on our odyssey. After getting mic'd up, Rebecca sat on the windlass and, just as this project inspires us with the willingness of people to get involved, Imogen inspired us by conducting her first ever interview - of us! Well done Imogen.
I was really interested to hear of her experience as a volunteer and Facebook group coordinator, trying to fit in coordination of beach cleans and the community’s response to the call for action from Surfers Against Sewage for Plastic Free Communities, with her day job as a ceramicist. At the time of writing there are 302 communities working towards Plastic Free Community status which requires a community to meet a number of objectives:
The local council commits to passing a resolution to support Plastic Free Coastlines, committing to plastic free alternatives and supporting plastic free initiatives within the constituency.
Local businesses and retailers pledge to remove at least three single-use plastic items in their businesses, and replace with sustainable alternatives.
Plastic free allies are developed in the local community, such as schools, community open spaces and libraries, and for large communities, a flag ship employer
Plastic free rallies are organised such as two beach cleans per year
A local resistance strategic group is formed including one local council member and a flagship business employee for larger communities.
I understood from her that it is hard to engage local businesses when you can’t communicate to them what the potential alternatives are and so it seems to me that there needs to be knowledge sharing of what products can be sustainably used as alternatives without say, deforesting other parts of the world. I shared our experiences of our Pokito collapsible coffee cups and our biodegradable Ecoffee cup, water bottles and Natbrands biodegradable kitchen scourers over a cup of smoky lapsang souchong after the interview wishing we could do more. I hope that our video can help her to find more volunteers to help Bournemouth on its journey towards reducing single use plastic.
Meanwhile Nick scribed our haiku of the day, as shared by Claire, onto treasure map paper and pinned it to a sandwich board to inspire the passers-by on the quay:
"What will outlast us?
Ideas, children, a floating
white carrier bag?"
I met Claire at a recent Women and Climate Change conference at the British Library and she is such a welcome addition to our odyssey, giving us a whole new perspective on how to communicate what can be difficult facts and ideas. A haiku is a short form of Japanese poetry usually in three unrhymed lines of five, seven, and five syllables. We really hope that this will be an interactive activity and so do get involved on our facebook feed.
It really was a day for visitors as Lisa Tweedie from Malmesbury Minimal Plastic June also visited, she coordinates a Facebook group designed to help support people within Malmesbury to reduce plastic use; if we all move a little way towards a lower plastic life, we can make a big difference together. A quick flick through their feed suggests the power of social media where members have made helpful shares of 5 plastic free shops swoops and travelling without plastic.
I wanted to make sure there was time to see what the residents of Poole could do about reducing plastic use so I visited surely the home of solid shampoo in the UK - Lush. Poole is the home of Lush, whose shops appear on many high streets and who, I have to admit, do tend to put people off with the smell. But I can't knock their eco-credentials having developed a closed loop recycling system for their black pots as well as their 'naked' shampoos, conditioners and soaps. The staff seemed genuinely proud to be able to share the actions with which Lush have backed up their ethos, and I heard all about their potato starch based packaging nuggets and the recycled fabric scarves they sell in store. Turns out the founders children are called Amelie Mae and Imogen Rose - that's not so far from Amelie Rose is it?
As we packed up the Amelie Rose plastic pollution investigation embassy, we totted up another 40 people who scrambled aboard today, which is a great achievement to have shared our mission and our passion for wooden boats with so many people. We finish up the day by “pre celebrating” Nick’s 50th birthday with a Dorset cider together with friends old and new.
Odyssey Log: 26.7 nm.
Total Engine Hours: 6 hours.
Visitors aboard = 101