Plastics OutreachOutreach comes in all shapes and sizes:
Alternatives to Plastic Bags - we've been selling (and using) 'green bags' since early 2007, and helping educate the public and stores about them. By 2009, we upgraded to a reusable canvas bag which is even more eco-friendly.
Classrooms - We work with kids, with particular focus on the hundreds of years it takes for plastics to decompose in the marine environment, and on their devastating impact on marine life.
Displays - we've created portable displays to provide vivid visual explanations of the impact of plastics in the marine environment. They are used at all manner of public events, by docents at the Coupeville Wharf, and in classrooms in Island County.
Naturalists - At Deception Pass State Park, and at Cama Beach State Park, Beach Watcher naturalists have interacted with, and provided information on plastics to, over ten thousand kids and adults since 2007.
Sound Waters - At this annual educational conference (500+ attendees), we have been essentially 'plastics-free' in 2008 and 2009. It's hard work, and took lots of planning, but it works.
Attendees were asked to bring their own resuable coffee mug, and this year 49.6% did. (Compostable cups were provided to the other 51.4%) Lunch was served without relying on any single-use plastic food containers or chip bags, and of the 118 pounds of waste generated by the conference, 97.5 pounds were composted.
Websites - to expand our outreach beyond Puget Sound, we started a website "Plastics And Us" in late 2008. The intent is to be a guide to the wealth of good resources that are already on the web (but often hard to find), and to augment those where we can make a difference.