10-Year-Old Cleaned Up Coastline After Whale Died With 30 Plastic Bags Ingested
By Melinda Cafferty, Natural Blaze
No one can say this this little girl isn’t putting her money where her mouth is. She is the perfect example of someone who does something about a problem in the face of environmental adversity.
After hearing about a whale that died on the Norwegian coast with 30 plastic bags inside its digestive tract, a ten-year-old girl readied herself to travel 620 miles help clean up of the coastline from “Holland to the Norwegian coast so she can play a key role in a massive beach clean‑up and plastic waste conference,” GNN reported.
Lilly Platt joined her mother and grandfather as volunteers at the ‘Plastic Whale Coastal Clean‑Up and Conference’ that took place on April 25th on the Norwegian island of Sotra.
The clean up is in memory of the “plastic whale”, a Cuvier’s beaked whale that died on the Norwegian coast last year more than 30 plastic bags still contained in its stomach.
I started picking up rubbish after seeing the effect that it had on wildlife…
I knew that every piece I picked up, was one less piece that could harm a living creature.
As you can see, cleanup was no easy feat.
The Norwegian government supported the effort by providing cranes and other equipment to remove the heftiest debris.
“The natural world is the only one we have,” said environmentalist Kenneth Bruvik who initiated the Conference.
When he is not focusing on cleanup he is intent on changing the reliance on single-use plastics.
Which brings me to a slight point of critique.
While no one would discourage these cleanups efforts, even the involvement of children who wish to effect change, the real change should begin with the origin of waste and the origin of the products.
Lilly warms my heart with her tenacity and rolled up sleeves, but I’d love to see a world where children don’t compelled to rigorously labor to erase other peoples’ mess. Where children aren’t burdened to save the world because the adults in it have spoken up and made sure the waste isn’t created to begin with. Wonder what I’m talking about?
If anyone is interested in exploring these ideas, check out Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things by William McDonough or his TED talk on YouTube. It’s the idea that anything created should have the true ability to be “reborn” instead of becoming waste that doesn’t degrade.
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