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Think global. Act local.

by John Curnow, Editor, Sail-WorldCruising.com 21 Feb 2019 12:00 UTC
Sample of waste collected to be converted into buying power © Seaside Scavenge

In last week's editorial, 'The reality, and some good solutions', we were on a subject that does seem to be widely appreciated. Firstly, that is really, really good news. Nice one! Secondly, how wonderful is it that people stand up to it, rather than shirk away from this ever-growing, and ominous disaster. From one fellow human being to another, thank you.

Obviously we would not have had so much of an opportunity without the work of Jenevora Swann, and Steve Brown with his Coastal Clean-Up Campaign, so naturally, an extra-special round of applause goes to them. Cheers team! It was also utterly heart-warming to learn from Steve: "I have already have contacts from people who have read the piece and want to help make a difference. Many thanks for a great article." Like wow. Thank you...

Our Managing Editor, Mark Jardine, and I really do get a lot from all the correspondence that comes in, so we wanted to acknowledge everyone who makes the time to do so, in addition to reading the website. Cheers to you, and a round of applause from everyone inside the Sail-World team to you, as well. We appreciate your readership and following.

One such piece of correspondence was from Doug, who said, "Good Morning. I am an enthusiastic fan of Sail-World, and have been since its inception; keep up the great work. I am reading your 14 Feb newsletter regarding Coastal Clean-up Campaign, and couldn't help thinking about a wonderful story you could do on a young Australian woman's efforts establishing a local community voluntary clean up program that has now spread, not only Australia wide, but also into South Africa. It's called Seaside Scavenge." So thanks Dorothy Dicks, and your cheque is in the mail!

I had a look, because it sounded not only like a good idea, it had a cool name. To be honest, any mob who has as their opening line, "We like to get together, clean up our coastline, share our pre-loved stuff, and listen to funky live tunes," is certainly going to get my attention. I'll be honest; they had me at funky live tunes. Once a clubber, always a clubber, huh?!

At any rate, Seaside Scavenge's Founder, Anna Jane Linke, advises me that they are certainly not ageist, which is really, really cool, and they are totally welcoming to anyone who wants to help. AJ, as she is known, went on to add, "I founded Seaside Scavenge in 2014 as a response to the lack of awareness amongst Australians about the proliferation of waste on their local beach or waterway."

"The unique and fun approach of creating a currency out of the litter, and educating participants about clothing waste, was my solution to engage a new audience to be conscious consumers. The live music is the thread that sews the event together, and ensures everyone is having a good time. This is what is important me. I believe that for change to be effective and lasting, people need to feel it."

Plastic is a valuable product and a great resource, but not when it is used in a throwaway context. The production of plastic begins with the distillation of crude oil. It then goes through many process, and ultimately is moulded into the products we are familiar with; yogurt containers, biscuit trays, chip packets etc. The problem is, plastic endures. It doesn't break down easily, and when it does, only into tiny pieces called 'micro-plastics', which make their way into our waterways. As a result, 90% of seabirds have been found to have plastic in their stomachs. Microplastics are also present in 90% of table sea salt, and it's even in beer!"

"It's time to reflect on our consumer culture at a larger scale. Let's look at the fast fashion industry; textile production is one of the most polluting industries, sitting just behind coal! In Australia, every 10 minutes, 6 tonnes of textiles go to landfill! It's time that each of us individually is accountable for our everyday purchases. Our dollar is our biggest vote, so put it where it counts."

"Or come to the Scavenge and forget about money all together. Your litter currency will be able to purchase you an array of funky pre-loved goods set-up in our pop-up market All of which is supplied through donations from the community. Your trash tokens might even get you a beer, or a coffee or access to an upcycling workshop."

"I want people, entirely new to the movement of waste and conscious consumerism, to come in and be touched by a new kind of activism. One that is positive, full of connection, and most importantly, creates real behavioural change," concluded Linke. So yes, every step of the way can be made to create a difference, and I am so impressed with their attention to ensuring that reason and passion meets reality and possibility; wonderful tale, and brilliant project. Thank you, Doug. Good one. Think global, and act local indeed...

OK. Today you will find that we have information for you about the Great Barrier Reef, mapping the ocean floor, bushfires in Tasmania, looking after undersea life by going slowly above them, Cape Verde, aground in Honduras, ARC, getting youth into cruising, Neel trimarans, Anchoring (properly), the Bahamas, more from Jeanne Socrates, HRH The Princess Royal pays the Cruising Association a visit, sea levels and the economies that affects, red tides in Miami no more, the Coast Guard Foundation looks after the service's men and women, as well as much more.

So you see, there are stories, lessons, inspirations and history to regale yourself with. Please do savour... We're really enjoying bringing you the best stories from all over the globe. If you want to add to that, then please make contact with us via email.

Remember too, if you want to see what is happening in the other Hemisphere, go to the top of the Sail-WorldCruising home page and the drag down menu on the right, select the other half of the globe and, voila, it's all there for you.

In the meantime, do you love being on the ocean? Well remember to love them back too. They need our help. Now more than ever! Until next time...

John Curnow
Editor, Sail-WorldCruising.com

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