Kids and plastics…

Together with kids aged 9-12 I conducted a beach clean-up Ameland, the Netherlands. Ameland is located in the north of the Netherlands, and is a scarcely populated area. The goal of the collection was to show them how much plastic can be found on a beach… even when it appears to be very clean when you look at the beach from a distance. We collected several garbage bags full of plastic (and other) waste within 30 minutes. Next we identified some of the plastics using a standardized guide.

We found, among other items, the following:

  • Shopping bags
  • Garbage bags
  • Drink bottles
  • Caps/lids
  • Pens
  • Beach toys
  • Straws
  • Ropes, strings and fibers
  • Nets
  • Fishing lines

We discussed how these plastics could impact the environment, including a paper on garbage in sperm whales, and the amount of “invisible”microplastics. A follow-up series of mini-lectures at school will focus in more depth about this issue… to be continued!

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