Just over a fortnight ago I flew into Corfu for a week long sailing trip around the Greek Islands with some friends. None of us had ever done anything like it before and it was definitely an unforgettable experience!
Imagine waking up just to grab your swimsuit for an early morning dip with views like this…
And in the evenings we had our dinner with views like this…
Note: we did also have storms like this…!
But sadly it wasn’t all glistening sunsets and hazy horizons.
Because far too often we would come across plastic waste like this…
In total over the week we saw:
- Plastic bottles x 10
- Plastic bags x 5
- Plastic straws x 2
- Fishing nets x 1
- Cigarettes x 2
- Rope x 1
- Bottle caps x 4
- Misc plastic pieces (unidentifiable) x 24
And as much as I’d read about the waste in our oceans and participated in the occasional beach clean up, I’d never spent such an extensive length of time at the sea to really appreciate the magnitude of the issue we have at hand.
But the biggest shock came on our last day when we anchored alongside a little island called Pitchia. At first it appeared like a beautiful place to spend our afternoon.
But as we got closer we noticed that the beach was absolutely covered in waste – consisting mostly of plastic water bottles.
So we moored up on the shore and had a little beach clean, filling our dinghy up to the top with as much as we could get our hands on.
It just highlights to me Annie Leonard’s quote: There is no such thing as ‘away’. When we throw anything away it must go somewhere.
So here comes my plastic pledge – to always choose the plastic free option whenever and wherever possible. What’s yours?