CMG is pleased to annouce a $10,000 Action Grant was awarded to 5 Gyres. The grant will be going toward the final phase of a Community Action Campaign that began with a scientific discovery in the Great Lakes, finding plastic microbeads in Lake Erie that were traced back to personal care products. As most of the microplastics found at sea are impossible to source, this provided a rare, scientific “smoking gun” to support a 2-year, collaborative campaign that recently culminated in a national bill banning microbeads products from US commerce by 2018. Public awareness however remains low, and trillions of microbeads continue contaminating our waters daily. This project has taken a much more global reach and their awareness campaign now has an international focus, specfically the UK.
To engage the community in action, prevent further microplastic contamination, and develop a network of engaged leaders, 5 Gyres developed a public-facing awareness campaign, which is currently in its final phase. The campaign centers around a digital action kit containing tools and resources; a series of community-building webinars; an art piece with action and data capture iPad; and video assets. Participants who sign up for the campaign are invited to download the action kit (http://bit.ly/1s3fVjp), which includes a slideshow and talking points that can be shares from a phone, a mailing label for sending used products back, a DIY scrub recipe, and a community action guide. 5 Gyres is currently working on translating several components into Spanish, to broaden and diversify their community.
The conservation metric of this campaign is the number of plastic microbeads that are prevented from entering waterways. They have calculated that thus far, from launching their first pledge in 2015, they have engaged 12,000 people in preventing an estimated 12 billion beads from entering our oceans and lakes. Their goal is to prevent an additional 4 billion beads from entering our waterways by October 2016. The longer term goal is to engage a group of engaged leaders ready to participate in the next Community Action Campaign, currently in development around Styrofoam prevention.