If we stopped to think for a moment about settling down in a lonely virgin island in our planet in this present moment we would find out we aren’t as lonely as we think we are. Sea waste and plastic are the most abundant human elements arriving in most spots and beaches.
Text: Alberto Sarabia Hierro
Let’s run over some figures: up to 12 million tons of plastic get every year to our seas in the whole world, which means the 80% of the marine pollution and a whole island, bigger than France and Germany together, has been reflected in cartographies with waste coming from the whole world. These worrying headlines make the year 2018 become the year of micro plastics.
Micro plastics are those particles shorter than 5 mm. They come from diverse origins: from the disintegration of bigger items of plastic to the micro spheres of cosmetic and hygiene products. They are highly hazardous, they settle in the marine food webs and come from several origins: from the most indivisible fragments joining the plankton to bigger fragments which can be easily eaten by birds, fish and marine turtles. Its polluting substances could mean a risk for the human health.
These particles get to the archipelago through the stream in the Canary Islands, arriving in the islands from the north-west with fragments coming from different spots of the world.
The association AVANFUER organizes beach cleanses in different points of the «majorera» coast that, all through these years have removed huge quantities of plastic. The main protagonist of the association are the volunteers and we have lately created a youth section in AVANFUER, formed by a group of young people motivated by the preservation of natural areas in Fuerteventura.
This is why we have designed a project for the measuring of macro and micro plastics with which they create methods of citizen science. This way we gather science data to generate knowledge and at the same time bring out in the open, through workshops and other activities, the importance of this fact and of looking after our environment.
Our project, «Creating awareness with Science» has been the winner, among 290 projects, in the contest «outstanding young people» organized by the public authority for youth in the Government of the Canary Islands.
Bearing this situation in mind, from a scientific point of view it’s is very important to know about the spreading of plastic, but also making people aware about good practical actions for the environment. If you want to get further information about this project or if you want to cooperate, write to firstname.lastname@example.org