We wanted to go on an adventure. A really big one. A life changing challenge. The Inside Passage was perfect! As ocean lovers, we wanted to make our challenge a really meaningful one, one that gave back to the ocean. That was how we decided to dedicate our paddle to the ocean. Without the ocean our adventure would not be. Both of us campaign for the oceans in Australia. By paddling the Inside passage we could spread our message across the oceans we love.
Most of us don’t read all the facts, it is a lot to get through. So here are some important videos where you can learn all about the issue of marine debris
The facts from The Tangaroa Blue Foundation
Catalyst Program highlighting the issue:
You can watch an important documentary “A Plastic Ocean” for $6 on youtube
We will completing the entire paddle without using single use plastic. No packaging, no ziplocks, no plastic bags. We are even looking at having kayaks made from recycled plastic for the journey! In the background we are putting proposal together for two marine conservation groups. One we already work with here in Australia, and one we hope to connect with in Canada/Alaska. This paddle is an opportunity to really get behind those people protecting out oceans and to spread the message to the everyday person.
The Tangaroa Blue Foundation is an Australian marine debris program that works to protect our oceans Australia wide. The Tangaroa Blue Foundation has been running a program called the Australian Marine Debris Initiative (AMDI) for the last 12 years. This program not only tackles the extensive task of removing man-made debris from our coastlines, but strives to target the source of this rubbish and prevent it getting into our marine environment in the first place. In fact, their motto is;
If all we do is clean up, that is all we will ever do
This mission is accomplished through thousands of volunteers and hard-working organisers who put all the information into the Australian Marine Debris Database, which is essentially a record of every single piece of rubbish collected as part of their clean-ups. Every. Single. Piece.
Amazingly (and terrifyingly), since the program started, there have been 7.3 million pieces of debris removed from beaches and input into the database. That’s INSANE!! From this information, they are able to identify what is littering our coasts, where it comes from, and they can then work with stakeholders to reduce marine debris from entering our oceans.
For the last 5 years between May and September the Tangaroa Blue Foundation has been organising week-long expeditions to Cape York, Australia. Many beaches in this beautiful area are not accessed by public, however are still littered with rubbish. Through collaborations between local Traditional Owners, Rangers and volunteers, approximately 12 tonnes of rubbish have been removed from the beaches in just 2016 alone
Living Oceans hosts a program called ‘Clear the Coast’. Similar to Tangaroa Blue Foundation it focuses on clearing coastal systems of the debris that wash up from our oceans. Clear the coast runs expeditions throughout the year in the area that we will be paddling in. We are excited to be sending some of our fundraising their way, but even more so we have plans in the tunnel to finish our paddle with a clean up!
“t’s a sad fact that no matter where one goes ashore these days or how often and how many volunteers clean beaches, the debris—mostly plastic—keeps coming, breaking down into smaller and smaller bits from the energy of the waves and the sun. During its time in the ocean, plastics collect organic pollutants from the seawater and those, too, enter the food web. The marine life affected will suffer a variety of ills, some of which will be passed down from generation to generation. Washed up ropes and nets pose an immediate entanglement threat to wildlife. It all must be removed.” Clear the Coast
Check out this video to see a bit about what they do;