So far 2020 has been a year of surprises; we surely couldn’t have predicted this pandemic. Having to cancel our national Run Against Plastic campaign was one of the biggest impacts we felt from COVID-19. We were really disappointed that we could not go out and meet all of you along the road, but fortunately, as restrictions and lockdowns clear up, new opportunities have risen! We’re getting back on track, and like always, we have big plans that we’d love to share with you.
In this newsletter, we are announcing a new student-run national fundraiser campaign, Kilometres for the Coastline. We’ll also discuss our Plastic Badge citizen science program and our upcoming work in Fiji.
Kilometres for the Coastline
To honour our intended Run Against Plastic campaign, students Alexandra Baaske and Matias McDonald, have organized a national running challenge, Kilometres for the Coastline. They’re hoping to get 800+ Canadians to run or walk 10 km each and pick up litter on the way! Additionally, runners are encouraged to join the official Kilometres for the Coastline GoFundMe team to support our efforts. Through this campaign we aim to both clean up Canada, as Andy Sward does each year, and raise funds to support our remote and uninhabited shoreline cleanups.
Alexandra Baaske is a student at the University of British Columbia, pursuing her Bachelor of Science with a specialization in Food, Nutrition and Health. A strong sense of social responsibility and a desire to create an actionable opportunity for individuals to address climate change motivated her to start Kilometres for the Coast.
Matias McDonald is pursuing his Bachelor of Design at the Wilson School of Design. With a background in product design, he has a unique perspective on consumption habits which informs his creation of sustainable products. His experience with sustainability led him to co-found Kilometers for the Coast with Alexandra.
Although our 2020 public events were cancelled due to the pandemic, these two brilliant leaders found a way for us to get back on track and still clean up Canada while implementing physical distancing!
Want to get involved? Go to kilometres-for-the-coast.com to start organizing your own run. Anything you can contribute will go a long way to supporting our work. If you can’t directly participate in this campaign, please share it with you friends, family, colleagues, clubs, and groups. All efforts matter!
All of the proceeds from the KFTC Fundraiser supports Plastic Oceans Canada’s remote and uninhabited shoreline cleanups with circular economy solutions. Because remote shorelines are hard to reach, they unfortunately act as primary catchments of waste plastics. Keeping in mind Canada has the largest coastline in the world at 243,042 km, you can imagine the impact.
Our focus is twofold:
1 – Deploy to essentially inaccessible coastlines and uninhabited islands.
2 – Employ circular economy solutions to financially offset the demand on donor funding.
We aim to utilize the fuel derived from end-of-life plastics to power the vehicles required for further expeditions across Canada, cleaning our shorelines. Learn more about our remote and uninhabited shoreline cleanup project here.
Interested in other ways to get involved? Did you know that if you complete a scavenger hunt for our Plastic Badge program, you can enter to win one of two trips to Tofino on an eco-adventure? All you need to do is print off a scavenger hunt, do a little cleanup, record what you find, and send the form back to us. Interested? Be sure to check it out soon as the contest ends on August 31, 2020.
You can also enter to win by hosting a bottle drive fundraiser! If you need some inspiration, just check out these amazing photos from a community group in BC, Cleaning Up Aldergrove. (pictures from Aldegrove).
Equally as exciting, our Plastic Badge program is now available for people sailing in the south pacific too. We’ve put together Plastic Badge Yacht Edition to help us with data collection on remote shores, with cruising yachts that have already signed up to help! We’ve also aligned with the Okeanos Foundation for the Sea and the Drua Experience in Fiji, utilizing their extensive fleet of traditional sailing canoes throughout the Pacific Island Nations. With 100% local influence assisting our data collection towards fully cleaning these shores, these partnerships mean more than words can express.
Check out episode two of our Saving Moana series; sailing to uninhabited islands between Tonga and Fiji. Soon we will be continuing efforts in the region of cleaning remote, normally inaccessible, shorelines.
Thanks for catching up with us, and for supporting us throughout these rough patches. It means a lot to have your support!